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MustafaMc
04-05-2013, 02:37 AM
Paul’s Gospel
by William R. Newell


William R. Newell (1868-1956), pastor, long-time associate of the Moody Bible Institute, evangelist, author of Bible commentaries, Bible teacher, conference speaker, and composer of the text of the beloved Gospel song (1895)— At Calvary.

There are two great revelators, or unfolders of Divine Truth in the Bible—Moses in the Old Testament and Paul in the New. Someone may say, "Is not Christ the Great Teacher?" In a sense this is true; but in a real sense Christ is the Person taught about, rather than teaching in the Gospels. The Law and the Prophets pointed forward to Christ; the Epistles point back to Him; and the Book of Revelation points to His Second Coming, and those things connected with it. The Four Gospels tell the story how He was revealed to men and rejected by them. Christ, Himself, therefore is the theme of the Bible. Moses in the Law reveals God’s holiness, and thus by means of the Law reveals human sin and the utter hopelessness and helplessness of man. Paul in his great Epistles reveals Christ as our Righteousness, Sanctification, Redemption, and All-in-All.

The twelve Apostles (Matthias by Divine appointment taking the place of Judas) were to be the "witnesses" (Acts 1:22) of Christ’s resurrection—that is, of the fact of it. They (the disciples) were not to unfold fully the doctrine of it as Paul was. The twelve were with Jesus personally and knew Him as a man, and when He died they saw it. When He was buried, they knew it personally as eye-witnesses. And when He was raised, they found it out experimentally, visiting His actual tomb and seeing that it was empty. They were also to see and handle the physical, risen body of our Lord. And it was with them that our Lord abode on earth forty days after His resurrection, "shewing Himself alive [physically, in a body] by many infallible proofs" (Acts 1:3).

This great fact—that is, that the Person whom the Jews themselves well knew they had crucified and buried, was risen from the dead and ascended to Heaven—this tremendous fact the twelve Apostles witnessed to Israel at Jerusalem and everywhere else. Thus we find the opening chapters of the Book of Acts filled with the single testimony that Jesus of Nazareth had risen from the dead and that remission of sins was through Him.

But unto none of these twelve Apostles did God reveal the great body of doctrine for this Age. Just as God chose Moses to be the revelator to Israel for the Ten Commandments and all connected with the Law dispensation, so God chose Saul of Tarsus to be the revelator and unfolder of those mighty truths connected with our Lord’s death, burial, and resurrection and His ascended Person. And all the "mysteries" or "secrets" revealed to God’s people in this Dispensation by the Holy Spirit are revealed by Paul. Finally, Paul is the unfolder of the great company of God’s elect, called the Church, the Body of Christ, the individuals of which Body are called members of the Body of Christ—members of Christ Himself.

No other Apostle speaks of these things. Peter himself had to learn them from Paul (2 Pet. 3:15-16). When Paul finishes his thirteen great Epistles (Romans to Philemon) those which belong to the Church, God indeed permits him to give a message then to the Hebrews. This is not part of the Church’s doctrine, but is simply explaining to Hebrew Christians the character, the real application, the typical meaning, of their Levitical system—that is, how it pointed forward to Christ.

James addresses his Epistle to "the twelve tribes"—that is, his Epistle has special reference to the Jewish Christians in the early days and to such throughout the Dispensation, for that matter. Peter writes to "the strangers who are sojourners of the Dispersion," that is, to the dispersed Jews who acknowledge Jesus as the Messiah.

In the second chapter of Galatians we are distinctly told by Paul that James, Cephas, and John were to go to the circumcision, while Paul tells us that his message was to the Gentiles. Since then the testimony by the Jewish Apostles to the Jews was duly given, there is now no distinction between Jews and Gentiles; and Paul’s message holds good for the world, both Jews and Gentiles. So that we find Paul finally sets the Jewish nation aside in the last chapter of the Book of Acts and opens his great Epistle to the Gentile’s center of the world with the statement that "there is no difference" between men; for "all have sinned," and there is again "no difference," for "whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved," since the same Lord is "Lord of all" (Rom. 3:22-23; 10:12).

God does as He pleases, and it pleased Him to choose —first to save people in this Dispensation through "the foolishness of preaching" [the "preached thing"]—that is, through the message about the Cross and what was done there (See 1 Cor. 1:21). And second, it pleased Him (God) to choose Paul to be the great proclaimer and revealer of just what the Gospel is for this Dispensation.

You can judge any man’s preaching or teaching by this rule—Is he Pauline? Does his doctrine start and finish according to those statements of Christian doctrine uttered by the Apostle Paul?

No matter how wonderful a man may seem in his gifts and apparent consecration—if his Gospel is not Pauline, it is not the Gospel; and we might as well get our minds settled at once as to that. Paul calls down the anathema—that is the curse of God Himself—upon anyone who preaches any other Gospel than that which he declared (Gal. 1:8-9).

Not for one moment are we to believe that James, Peter, and John were at variance with Paul—not in the least. They were given certain things by the Spirit to say to certain classes of people. They do not conflict with Paul. And their words are included in the statement that "All Scripture is profitable" (2 Tim. 3:16).

But nevertheless, Paul is the declarer and revealer of the Gospel to us. Take Romans to Philemon (written by Paul) out of the Bible and you are bereft of Christian doctrine. For instance, if you were to take Paul’s Epistles out of the Bible, you cannot find anything about the Church, the Body of Christ, for no other Apostle mentions the Body of Christ. You cannot find one of the great mysteries, such as the Rapture of the Church (1 Thess. 4; 1 Cor. 15) or the mystery of the present hardening of Israel (Rom. 11). No other Apostle speaks of any of those mysteries. Paul alone reveals them—the great doctrines such as Justification, Redemption, Sanctification. And what is perhaps the most tremendous fact of every real Christian life, that of his personal union to the Lord in glory. Paul is the great Divinely-chosen opener to us of truth for this Age.

The great doctrines that Paul reveals may be outlined as follows—

....(omitted for brevity)...
http://www.middletownbiblechurch.org/dispen/newell.htm

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MustafaMc
04-06-2013, 01:34 PM
I came upon this short article after listening to a show by a Christian TV evangelist, Les Feldick, where he pretty much said that Paul was the one to whom the message of Christianity was revealed. I, as a Muslim, grasp the significance of this claim as also supported by the first chapter of Galatians. Now the question remains if that 'revelation' to Paul was authentic or if it was a misguidance from Shaytan. I do not believe that Christians grasp the significance of this article and the claim that Paul made about himself. I believe that Christianity as we know it today was predominantly based on the writings of Paul as William Newell pointed out above, but Christians believe that the gospel Paul preached was the same as what Peter and the other disciples preached. I believe they were quite different and actually diametrically opposed. This concept is further supported in the book "Lost Christianities" by Bart Ehrman.
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Eric H
04-07-2013, 06:20 PM
Greetings and peace be with you MustafaMc my friend,

I find Paul’s writings have a deep and profound meaning for me, they add to the message of Jesus. He was blinded, imprisoned a number of times, bitten by a snake, shipwrecked, whipped and still he proclaimed the message of God in a most positive and caring way.

In the spirit of praying to ‘One God’

Eric
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MustafaMc
04-07-2013, 08:14 PM
Peaceful greetings to you as well, Eric H, ol' chap,

It is interesting that you wrote about Paul in a way that I similarly feel about Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) who endured being strangled, having camel entrails dumped on him in prayer, being chased out of Taif by people pelting him with stones and was economically boycotted for delivering the message that (we believe) was revealed to him. Yet through all of this he maintained his composure and stayed the course of preaching Islamic monotheism. Most impressive to me was his spirit of forgiveness toward the people of Taif and his not taking revenge upon the inhabitants of Mecca upon its conquest.

I think, however, that few Christians would profess a love for Paul that Muslims have toward Muhammad, instead the focus of love for Christians is on Jesus. I don't remember a single gospel song where Paul was even mentioned, yet he was the one to whom the gospel of Jesus' death, burial and resurrection was revealed to.

Would you agree with William Newell that, "God chose Saul of Tarsus to be the revelator and unfolder of those mighty truths connected with our Lord’s death, burial, and resurrection and His ascended Person" and, correspondingly, "Christ is the Person taught about, rather than teaching in the Gospels"? What is your perspective on his interactions with the disciples?
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Eric H
04-07-2013, 09:52 PM
Greetings and peace be with you MustafaMc; my not so ol' chap;

It is interesting that you wrote about Paul in a way that I similarly feel about Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) who endured being strangled, having camel entrails dumped on him in prayer, being chased out of Taif by people pelting him with stones and was economically boycotted for delivering the message that (we believe) was revealed to him. Yet through all of this he maintained his composure and stayed the course of preaching Islamic monotheism. Most impressive to me was his spirit of forgiveness toward the people of Taif and his not taking revenge upon the inhabitants of Mecca upon its conquest.
It seems that many of the prophets had to suffer in some way to pass on their message, all their stories of forgiveness are a great inspiration to me.

I think, however, that few Christians would profess a love for Paul that Muslims have toward Muhammad, instead the focus of love for Christians is on Jesus. I don't remember a single gospel song where Paul was even mentioned,
Agreed

yet he was the one to whom the gospel of Jesus' death, burial and resurrection was revealed to.
Along with many others of Jesus disciples.

Would you agree with William Newell that, "God chose Saul of Tarsus to be the revelator and unfolder of those mighty truths connected with our Lord’s death, burial, and resurrection and His ascended Person" and, correspondingly, "Christ is the Person taught about, rather than teaching in the Gospels"?
Agreed

What is your perspective on his interactions with the disciples?
Paul is introduced in the Bible persecuting the disciples, and being present at the stoning to death of Stephen. In human terms there should not be any further interactions with the disciples, only God can break down these barriers.

Paul has some profound words to say about unity through Jesus.

In the spirit of praying to 'One God'

Eric
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MustafaMc
04-07-2013, 10:25 PM
Originally Posted by Eric H
Greetings and peace be with you MustafaMc; my not so ol' chap;
LOL, so you think one who is 52 would be a "not so ol' chap", huh? I always fond that phrase with an English accent to be quite amusing.
It seems that many of the prophets had to suffer in some way to pass on their message, all their stories of forgiveness are a great inspiration to me.
Your words brought to mind the beautiful story of Joseph and his brothers.
Paul is introduced in the Bible persecuting the disciples, and being present at the stoning to death of Stephen. In human terms there should not be any further interactions with the disciples, only God can break down these barriers.
This one fact is the most amazing aspect of Paul's story to me and somewhat reminds me of Omar ibn Al-Khattab and Khalid ibn Al-Walid.
Paul has some profound words to say about unity through Jesus.
Can you share a few examples of what Paul wrote concerning the unity of God that are particularly profound to you with what they mean to you personally? How do his words bring glory to the Father, specifically?
In the spirit of praying to 'One God'

Eric
In the spirit of striving toward mutual understanding as we worship our Creator,

MustafaMc
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Eric H
04-07-2013, 11:47 PM
Greetings and peace be with you as always MustafaMc;

LOL, so you think one who is 52 would be a "not so ol' chap", huh? I always fond that phrase with an English accent to be quite amusing.
Only 52, a mere slip of a lad, anyway it is past my bedtime, and I shall ponder on your questions.

In the spirit of striving toward mutual understanding as we worship our Creator,

MustafaMc
You say it so much better, I might just borrow this.

Eric
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IAmZamzam
04-08-2013, 12:01 AM
One day at the Christian high school I once went to I walked into my history class and found that the teacher was late and as a result the blackboard had not yet been erased from the previous period's theology class. I saw that the teacher from that period had drawn a series of three concentric circles. In the middle one was the word "CHRIST", in the second one the word "PAUL"; in the outermost circle was the word "CHURCH". Even as a Christian I found this unpleasant because I could see how the history of Christianity was summed up all too well. And I certainly remembered it ever afterward, long after embracing Islam. This thread really made me think of that day.
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Eric H
04-08-2013, 08:29 AM
Greetings and peace be with you IAmZamzam;

One day at the Christian high school I once went to I walked into my history class and found that the teacher was late and as a result the blackboard had not yet been erased from the previous period's theology class. I saw that the teacher from that period had drawn a series of three concentric circles. In the middle one was the word "CHRIST", in the second one the word "PAUL"; in the outermost circle was the word "CHURCH". Even as a Christian I found this unpleasant because I could see how the history of Christianity was summed up all too well. And I certainly remembered it ever afterward, long after embracing Islam. This thread really made me think of that day
Sadly we both missed that theology class, which means that we missed the context that the lecturer was trying to convey.

Paul was a powerful speaker and evangelist; he clearly said that people should not follow Paul or Apollos as they are both only servants of God.

1 Corinthians 3 – 3

Paul talks passionately about Christ at the centre of the church and Christ’s relationship with the Church.

Ephesians 5; 19- 32

Like our friend MustafaMc quoted, Paul was more of a messenger for Christ.

In the spirit of striving toward mutual understanding as we worship our Creator,

Eric
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IAmZamzam
04-08-2013, 01:23 PM
I believe you mean 1 Corinthians 3:1, 5-6. Eric, there are three different places in his letters to the Corinthians (1 Corinthians 7:12, 7:25, 2 Corinthians 11:17) in which Paul explicitly states that he’s about to speak only for himself and most definitely is not inspired but what good did that do? When a man is telling people what they want to hear sometimes that’s all that they do hear. They drown everything else out. Perhaps there is just some natural—what’s the word? “Jungian”?—appeal to the human mind in this concept of death and resurrection releasing one from sin and the Ebionite and Gnostic movements were doomed from the start. They were up against some very powerful primordial psychological forces. Just a thought.
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Eric H
04-09-2013, 07:05 AM
Greetings and peace be with you IAmZamzam;

I believe you mean 1 Corinthians 3:1, 5-6. Eric, there are three different places in his letters to the Corinthians (1 Corinthians 7:12, 7:25, 2 Corinthians 11:17) in which Paul explicitly states that he’s about to speak only for himself and most definitely is not inspired but what good did that do? When a man is telling people what they want to hear sometimes that’s all that they do hear. They drown everything else out. Perhaps there is just some natural—what’s the word? “Jungian”?—appeal to the human mind in this concept of death and resurrection releasing one from sin and the Ebionite and Gnostic movements were doomed from the start. They were up against some very powerful primordial psychological forces. Just a thought.
When people post something from the Quran on this forum, I try and search for a greatest good meaning. My thoughts are that Muslims are also striving to do God’s will. I find this helps me in many ways, even though I do not feel drawn towards Islam, somehow we exist side by side with our differences.

In the spirit of striving toward mutual understanding as we worship our Creator,

Eric
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IAmZamzam
04-09-2013, 11:10 PM
I don't see what any of that has to do with anything I said, Eric. Do you not think that I have the right attitude or something? I was merely saying that just because Paul said A does not mean that people aren't going to claim B anyway--even in his own name. Probably because they're too interested in C and D--and trying too hard to connect it to a Z written by another person entirely.
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MustafaMc
04-10-2013, 01:43 AM
One thing that strikes me as a glaring dichotomy is that the 'gospel' preached and is accepted by Christians is quite different from the 'injeel' that Muslims believe was revealed to Jesus. Muslims see Jesus as a messenger of Allah (swt) while Christians see Jesus is God Incarnate although one would be hard pressed to find quote reported from Jesus' lips that unequivocally support this most fundamental belief.
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Eric H
04-10-2013, 04:14 PM
Greetings and peace be with you MustafaMc; my friend;

while Christians see Jesus is God Incarnate although one would be hard pressed to find quote reported from Jesus' lips that unequivocally support this most fundamental belief
John 20
28 Thomas said to him, ‘My Lord and my God!’

29 Then Jesus told him, ‘Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.’
I am not sure how far we can compare our scriptures; whilst we journey in the spirit of striving toward mutual understanding as we worship our Creator.

Blessings

Eric
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IAmZamzam
04-10-2013, 04:26 PM
Eric, that doesn't sound any different to me from any other instance of a shocked man saying, "Oh my God!" And Jesus's response, when not taken out of context, is clearly referring to Thomas finally accepting the fact of the resurrection (that is, it's a fact according to the text anyway). Whereas you get a very different picture in a similar moment in Matthew, in which when hearing about the resurrection Peter says, "God forbid it, Lord!" Think about that exclamation, Eric. Think very carefully. You're the one who insists on taking these oaths literally so it seems to me that you’ve kind of painted yourself into a corner here.

And please—I'm trying to ask nicely here as you're such a nice man—please don't make your next post consist of the old "but they're two different persons in the Trinity" or "but he was both perfect God and perfect Man", because I'm beginning to really lose my patience with both of those. They're just excuses not to think.
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Eric H
04-10-2013, 06:16 PM
Greetings and peace be with you IAmZamzam;

And please—I'm trying to ask nicely here as you're such a nice man—please don't make your next post consist of the old "but they're two different persons in the Trinity" or "but he was both perfect God and perfect Man", because I'm beginning to really lose my patience with both of those. They're just excuses not to think
I have found a profound sense of peace through my faith, and I do not expect you to understand my reasoning. I feel any further explanations on my part will only cause further debate and disagreements; which I feel will not be helpful to either of us. As I said in my last post; I am not sure how far we can compare our scriptures; whilst we journey in the spirit of striving toward mutual understanding as we worship our Creator. This is an Islamic forum, and I try and respect our differences.

Blessings

Eric
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IAmZamzam
04-10-2013, 06:42 PM
You don't expect me to understand your reasoning? Did you not hear the part about me going to a Christian high school? I was at the top of my class in theology, Eric. I merely know a cop-out when I see one. Now there is nothing at all wrong with wanting to keep the peace and I respect that--but if you ever do feel like responding then you know where to find me.
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Eric H
04-12-2013, 05:58 AM
Greetings and peace be with you IAmZamzam;

You don't expect me to understand your reasoning? Did you not hear the part about me going to a Christian high school? I was at the top of my class in theology, Eric. I merely know a cop-out when I see one. Now there is nothing at all wrong with wanting to keep the peace and I respect that--but if you ever do feel like responding then you know where to find me.
I came on this forum 8 years ago in the hope of journeying together with my Muslim brothers and sisters, as we worship our creator. Thanks for starting the thread, A survey you have probably never seen’ I am more than happy to post Islamic scriptures that inspire me, I feel this is a way we can journey together.

I have been a Street Pastor for the last five years, this involves going out until 3 – 4 am on a Saturday morning, we come into contact with fights, angry people, troubled people, drunks and lots of wonderful people also. We don’t go out to preach but people ask us about God.

This ministry requires a certain amount of faith and trust in our creator, I have found St. Paul’s letters to have a deep and profound meaning for me, they are a great inspiration to do something.

We have eight different denominations working together as Street Pastors in our town, I would love the opportunity to be a part of an interfaith scheme where we do not have to debate and argue about our faith, rather we live it together.

In the spirit of praying for a greater interfaith cooperation

Eric
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