preview

Paul's Faith

Satisfactory Essays
Controversy arises regarding the definition of faith, because it is often defined in a number of different and conflicting ways by religious persons. Even demons have faith (James 2:19) – but only one faith is true. We have learned that faith is necessary to please God and it is also a key for salvation. Nonetheless, faith is commonly referred as both the firm belief in something to which there is no proof, and as the belief of traditional doctrines of a religion. For Christians, faith is mainly based on the work and teachings of Jesus Christ. In Hebrews 11:1 Paul defines faith as follows:
“Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.”(Hebrews 11:1)
The passage confirms that in compliance to the scripts, Faith is indeed a leap of trust. A risk to believe in something we do not see. Consequently, it has become a synonym for salvation. For Paul, Faith and salvation began in the cross and the resurrection of Christ; it also concerns justice, and reconciliation granted to men by God. The word conviction in the passage exudes the idea of bringing forth evidence that demonstrates an idea, outstandingly an idea that is contrary to what the case is.
The core of this paper is to analyze the relationship between Faith and salvation, as well as to contrast Paul’s doctrine with Jesus’. Over the past years, a paradigm shift in the New Testament has led researchers to question whether the church understood accurately firs-century Judaism and the apostle Paul. These allegations cannot be easily put aside, for they strike directly at our understanding of salvation.
The New Testament is known as the last and definite revelation of God, through Jesus Christ. The events are no longer th...

... middle of paper ...

... the death and resurrection of Jesus. In fact, this is the main reason their definition of faith and salvation differ. What sets Paul apart from Jesus, is also the massive interest in the Holy Spirit and the Gentle mission, his negative attitude toward the Old Testament, and teachings on the church as a ‘body’.

In my opinion, Paul taught a doctrine that opposed teachings attributed to Jesus. He replaced Jesus’ selfless actions with a selfish desire to gain the gift of salvation. Despite the widespread, uncritical adulation of Paul by those who listen to others instead of thinking for themselves, Thomas Jefferson, wrote in a letter to James Smith, that “Paul was the first corrupter of the doctrines of Jesus.” (Works, 1829 edition, vol.4, p.327.) And finally, English playwright quoted “it would be a better world if Paul had never been born.”
Get Access