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Paul Confronts Peter

[W]hen they saw that I had been entrusted with the gospel for the uncircumcised, just as Peter had been entrusted with the gospel for the circumcised (for he who worked through Peter making him an apostle to the circumcised also worked through me in sending me to the Gentiles), and when James and Cephas and John, who were acknowledged pillars, recognized the grace that had been given to me, they gave to Barnabas and me the right hand of fellowship, agreeing that we should go to the Gentiles and they to the circumcised. They asked only one thing, that we remember the poor, which was actually what I was eager to do.

But when Cephas came to Antioch, I opposed him to his face, because he stood self-condemned; for until certain people came from James, he used to eat with the Gentiles. But after they came, he drew back and kept himself separate for fear of the circumcision faction. And the other Jews joined him in this hypocrisy, so that even Barnabas was led astray by their hypocrisy. But when I saw that they were not acting consistently with the truth of the gospel, I said to Cephas before them all, “If you, though a Jew, live like a Gentile and not like a Jew, how can you compel the Gentiles to live like Jews?” (Galatians 2:7-14, NRSV)

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Categories: Galatians, paul, peter

Incredible Friendship

I wonder if I’ve ever experienced the kind of support that Paul provides Onesimus. I wonder if I’ve ever provided the kind of support that Paul offers.

Categories: onesimus, paul, philemon

Paul, a Prisoner

Interesting that Paul writes about freedom for his friend while imprisoned by the authorities.

Categories: paul, philemon

Introduction to Philemon

Paul makes a case for Philemon’s owner to forgive his escape from slavery.

Categories: paul, philemon

Paul’s Goodbye Speech

From Miletus, Paul sent to Ephesus for the elders of the church. When they arrived, he said to them: “You know how I lived the whole time I was with you, from the first day I came into the province of Asia. I served the Lord with great humility and with tears and in the midst of severe testing by the plots of my Jewish opponents. You know that I have not hesitated to preach anything that would be helpful to you but have taught you publicly and from house to house. I have declared to both Jews and Greeks that they must turn to God in repentance and have faith in our Lord Jesus.

“And now, compelled by the Spirit, I am going to Jerusalem, not knowing what will happen to me there. I only know that in every city the Holy Spirit warns me that prison and hardships are facing me” (Acts 20:17-23, NIV).

Review of 2 Corinthians

Paul had his work cut out for him.

He had some strong words for the Corinthian church,.

History indicates that this strengthened their resolve.

Sometimes the church is foolish today. Strong words may be exactly what is needed for the church to stay faithful in today’s world.

Categories: 2 Corinthians, Church, paul

Avoiding Confrontation

For there’s nothing we can do to oppose the truth; all we can do is align ourselves with it. You see, we celebrate when we are weak but you are strong. Our prayer is simple: that you may be whole and complete. How I hope I am saving you by writing this to you in advance; this letter will spare me from using the Lord’s authority to come down on you when I arrive. His intention in giving me this authority is to build you up, not tear you down (vv. 8-10).

Categories: 2 Corinthians, paul
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