The Apostle Paul: The Man and His Letters
In this six week study of the Apostle Paul we will look at what we know about the man,
the culture in which he went o his missionary trips, and about the letters he wrote.
- What makes Paul so unique and so important to Christianity? What was his role in the formation of the faith?
- How do we use the letters he left behind?
- What about the claim that Paul was a misogynist?
- That he was really raising money for his own use instead of for the continuing mission?
We will discuss all of these topics and more as we delve into Paul the man and missionary and his letters.
There will time each week for questions and discussion of this multi-faceted man.
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Week 1 Paul as man, persecutor, missionary
- What do we know about Paul, his culture, his life, his job? Where is this information found?
- Why is Paul so important to Christianity?
- Why did he initially persecute the Jesus followers?
- His conversion experience
- Formation of Paul’s doctrine
Week 2 Paul’s letter and the New Testament
- About the New Testament – when and how transmitted
- Paul’s 13 letters, almost 1/2 of the New Testament
- What is so important about these letters?
- Were all of the letters actually written by Paul?
- What does it mean to be reading an occasional letter 2000 years later?
Week 3 The First Letter to the Corinthians
- What was Corinth like?
- Paul’s ministry in Corinth
- Was it actually the first letter?
- What about the passage admonishing women?
- The four problems addressed in the letter
- The one problem causing all of the others and Paul’s answers
Week 4 The Letter to the Roman Communities
- Looking at the format of Paul’s letters
- Why was this letter written?
- Paul did not start any churches in Rome so what was the connection?
- Paul’s theology and doctrine laid out
Week 5 Paul and the Community in Galatia
- Difference between this letter and Paul’s other letters
- Why Paul is so angry at this community
- Why the discussion of circumcision is so key to the question of salvation for the Gentiles
Week 6 Finishing Up Our Discussion of Paul
- The pastoral letters
- Finishing anything left from previous meetings
- Discussion of reading Paul’s letters – does it make a difference in reading them to know the background, culture, and context?