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The Apostle Paul


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The Apostle Paul

  1. 2. <ul><li>Next to Jesus, the most intriguing figure of the 1st century of Christianity </li></ul><ul><li>Far better known than Jesus because he wrote letters that we have as primary sources today </li></ul><ul><li>Paul wrote thirteen letters which are included in the New Testament </li></ul><ul><li>Letters Were Written To: </li></ul><ul><li>Romans Corinthians Galatians </li></ul><ul><li>Ephesians Philippians Colossians </li></ul><ul><li>Thessalonians Timothy Titus </li></ul><ul><li>Philemon </li></ul>
  2. 4. <ul><li>Romans did not pay much attention to the Christians. Seeing Christianity as just another sect within Judaism </li></ul><ul><li>Romans tolerated other religious as long as they did not threaten public order or public morals </li></ul><ul><li>All Romans were supposed to participate in public rituals honoring Roman gods </li></ul><ul><li>Christians only believed in one God and refused to take part in these ceremonies </li></ul><ul><li>Romans saw this refusal as an act of treason, punishable by death </li></ul>
  3. 5. <ul><li>While Jesus is regarded by Christians as the founder of the faith, Paul's role in defining Christianity can't be ignored. &quot;Paul is regarded as the great interpreter of Jesus' mission, who explained, in a way that Jesus himself never did, how Jesus' life and death fitted into a cosmic scheme of salvation, stretching from the creation of Adam to the end of time.&quot; </li></ul><ul><li>As a youth in Jerusalem, Saul/Paul became part of the opposition to the newly formed Jerusalem </li></ul><ul><li>Saul was an active persecutor of the Jerusalem Church, entering its synagogues and arresting its members </li></ul><ul><li>The high priest entrusted Saul with an important mission, to travel to Damascus and arrest prominent members of the Jerusalem Church </li></ul><ul><li>On the way to Damascus, Paul experienced a vision of Jesus that converted him from persecutor to believer </li></ul>
  4. 6. <ul><li>Christianity grew slowly in the first century, took root in the second century, and spread widely during the third </li></ul><ul><li>Christianity was personal and offered everyone an eternal life </li></ul><ul><li>It was familiar in that it contained elements of familiar and popular religions. Paul's new religion had the advantage over other salvation-cults of being attached to the Hebrew Scriptures, which Paul now reinterpreted as forecasting the salvation-death of Jesus. </li></ul><ul><li>It filled the human need to belong by offering Christian community groups where people could come together and help one another in times of sickness and need </li></ul>