Paul part B question

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  • Part B- Acts and Letters. Evaluate the claim that Paul's primary focus was always to protect the church
    • Paul believed that he was called at his conversion to be an apostle and to spread God's word to the ends of the earth. Paul is prepared to face arrest and imprisonment and suffering to achieve his goal therefore this clearly shows his concern for church
    • There are many examples in Acts which prove that Paul's primary concern was to protect the church.
      • At the end of the first journey he revisits each church he had founded "strengtheninh the disciples and encouraging them to remain true to the faith" He also established leaders in each church to sustain the faith he had planted.
    • In his speech at Miletus in chap 20, we see Paul the pastor showing great care for the Christian elders from Ephesus
      • He inspires them to "keep watch over yourselves and the flock of which the Holy spirit has made you overseers". He also warns them to beware of the savage wolves who would come in and ravage the flock
    • Paul writes his letter to the Galatians in order to protect the church from false teaching and a distorted message. He refers to his row with Peter in Antioch. Paul takes him to task about this clearly wishing to avoid any divisions which had occurred at Corinth.
    • In his letters to the Corinthians again he is very protective of his church. He speaks out against divisions which had occurred at Corinth.
    • Some would say that Paul's primary concern was to defend himself. In his trials this is very evident.
      • On the steps of the barracks he defends himself in front of an angry mob baying for his life. Before the Sanhedrin he defends himself very cleverly and this religious court don't find him guilty.
    • Before Felix he defends himself very capably against four allegations made by Tertullus, a lawyer. Equally, before Festus he defends himself and Festus cannot find a case against him.
      • if Paul loses any of the trials he would face death. So you could argue that he is fighting for his life.
        • In Galatians Paul defends himself against a charge that he wasn't a true apostle and he has to defend himself here.
    • Even in his trials Paul still has the gospel in mind. He has to defend himself in the trials to make sure he remains alive and reaches Rome where he will fulfil Jesus' command in Acts 1:8. He defends himself in order to defend the gospel and reach Rome

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