03.11.22 EChurch@Wartbburg N. T. Wright on Paul and the Transformative Gospel

A Morning Prayer: Syrian Clementine Liturgy:1st century

O God, Who art the unsearchable abyss of peace, the ineffable sea of love,
the fountain of blessings, and the bestower of affection,
Who sendest peace to those that receive it;
open to us this day the sea of Thy love, a
nd water us with the plenteous streams from the riches of Thy grace.
Make us children of quietness, and heirs of peace. Enkindle in us the fire of Thy love;
sow in us Thy fear; strengthen our weakness by Thy power;
bind us closely to Thee and to each other in one firm bond of unity;
for the sake of Jesus Christ.

Prayer For Charity Coptic Liturgy of St. Cyril link

O God of love,
Who hast given a new commandment through Thine only begotten Son,
that we should love one another, even as Thou didst love us,the unworthy
and the wandering, and gavest Thy beloved Son for our life and salvation;
we pray Thee, Lord, give to us, Thy servants, in all time of our life on the earth,
a mind forgetful of past ill-will, a pure conscience and sincere thoughts,
and a heart to love our brethren;
for the sake of Jesus Christ, Thy Son, our Lord and only Saviour.

The Apostles’ Creed

I believe in God the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth,
And in Jesus Christ his only Son our Lord,
Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, Born of the Virgin Mary, Suffered under Pontius Pilate,
Was crucified, dead, and buried. He descended into hell;
The third day He rose again from the dead; He ascended into heaven,
And sitteth on the right hand of God the Father Almighty; F
rom thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Ghost; The Holy catholic Church,
the Communion of Saints; The Forgiveness of sins; The Resurrection of the body, And the Life everlasting.


Harnish: A Scottish Benediction link

Give us, O Lord, grace and strength to forebear and to persevere.
Give us courage, gaiety, and the quiet mind.
Spare to us our friends, soften to us our enemies.
Bless us, if it may be, in all our innocent endeavors,
And if it may not be, give us the strength to encounter that which is to come so that we may be,
Brave in peril,
Constant in tribulation,
Temperate in wrath,And in all changes in fortune, down to the gates of death,
may we be loyal and loving to one another.


03.11.22 EChurch@Wartbburg N. T. Wright on Paul and the Transformative Gospel — 13 Comments

  1. The gospel for this dispensation is I Corinthians 15:1-4, which succinctly describes what Paul discusses in detail in Romans chapters three through five. There is more than one gospel in the Bible (Kingdom gospel Jesus and the twelve preached in Matthew, Mark, Luke and John preached to Israel, Everlasting gospel in Revelation 14:6,7 that will be preached during the tribulation), but Paul tells us in Ephesians 1:13 that those hearing his gospel (see Romans 2:16 and 16:25 and II Timothy 2:8) and place their faith in Christ are sealed by the Holy Spirit until the day of redemption. Paul also tells us in Galatians 1:8 that there is a curse upon anyone preaching any other gospel than the one Paul preached. The denominations are all led by individuals of sharp minds and deep intellects, but hardly any discuss the unique message Jesus gave to the Apostle Paul that was completely different than what Jesus preached to Israel (see Matthew 10:6 15:24)in MMLJ or Peter and the other 11 preached in Acts. See Ephesians 3 and Colossians 2, as well as Galatians 1 and 2 for details on the mystery revealed to Paul. See graceambassadors.com

  2. Dale Rudiger:
    One Lord, one faith, ONE gospel.

    This seems a good place to discuss some apparent problems and issues with Hyper / Ultra dispensationalism.

    There are some denominations that don’t actually call themselves a denomination a lot of times but call themselves “Grace” churches with “grace believers“. They have also been referred to as hyper-dispensationalism or ultra-dispensationalism from outside.

    One may come across the names Scofield and his widely-used study Bible, Bullinger, Stam, or O’Hair. Some of them arguably use a prooftext of 2 Timothy 2:15 and “rightly dividing the word of truth” to divide everything that came before Paul’s arrival and everything after until the end of the time of the Gentiles. Some then appear to use some or all of Paul’s epistles as the prism through which church doctrine is to be learned and established and modern belief, profession, and practice is to be primarily seen, studied, and observed.

    Some of their conclusions seem to be devoid of proper contextualization within Scripture but dependent on proof texts. In that vein, some (under which seems to be problematic assertions and conclusions) put baptism as a Jewish rite that should not be observed in this “dispensation“, specifically targeting the Great Commission as only going out to the “apostles” of the previous dispensation that some assert only applies to Jews. (Never mind Paul’s words about how he had baptized some and the recording of baptisms post-Acts 15, nor how reaching the uttermost parts of the earth per Acts 1:8 would fit with their view.)

    Then, there’s the arguable proof-texting of the use of the word “mystery“ and Paul using the term “my gospel“ to actually assert that Paul brought a different gospel then what was brought by Peter and the other apostles. Much murkiness as far as assertions and conclusions as to what constitutes the Gospel of the kingdom appears to be employed towards bolstering that contention. The “rightly dividing“ doctrine (sic) reportedly emphasizes what Paul says in Galatians 2 about Peter and the rest of the apostles going to the Jews and Paul going to the Gentiles towards the same end. Some of them actually appear to assert that the Jews had to be saved through the law.

    Even what Paul says about hearing from Jesus directly from above seems to be used to emphasize the supposed divide and difference. Of course, what’s contained in Acts 10 and 11 – – where Peter hears from above and is chosen to share with the Gentiles (also noted in Acts 15:7) – – and Acts 15 – – where Peter emphasizes in verse 11 that “we believe that through the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ we shall be saved, even as they” – – seems to be largely overlooked in order to draw the above conclusions.

    Paul also preached to both, “earnestly testifying both to the Jewish and to Greeks repentance in God and faith in our Lord Jesus” (Acts 20:21), which arguably points to what occurred in Galatians 2 as more of a specification of the area of ministry concentration for particular ministers rather than to exclusively restricting their focus according to supposedly different gospels for different people and dispensations.

    Despite what is noted in the preceding verse and where it occurs, some of them actually assert that the preaching of repentance was something restricted to the previous dispensation. Also, rather than the “mystery“ being that Paul was given a different gospel than the apostles had received that had previously been hidden but then would go to the Gentiles starting with Paul’s unique ministry, the “mystery of revelation” described in Ephesians 3:2-7 indicates “that the Gentiles are joint-heirs, and a joint-body, and joint-partakers of the promise in Christ Jesus, through the gospel” (Eph. 3:6) – – something that evidently had been pointedly emphasized and specified in Acts 10, 11, 15, etc.

    Reportedly, some of the hyper-dispensationalists deem all of Paul’s words to be taken as “commandments of the Lord”, others emphasizing his “prison epistles”, and still others something in between. Some apparently put their “rightly dividing” line on modern relevance and applicability of Scripture at Acts 2, others at different junctures of Paul’s ministry such as Acts 9, others Acts 13, others solely the prison epistles, and so forth.

    Along those lines, I recall from an interwebs blog comments section where someone evidently from one of these perspectives could seem to have an issue when others would post relevant Scripture from anywhere but Paul’s epistles — even Paul’s own words from the book of Acts — to counter some of these assertions. And perish the thought that someone would cite the Gospel accounts and even the words of Jesus, which may be countered with an assertion that He was speaking to Jews alone during His earthly ministry, was only sent to the lost sheep of Israel, and other claims that seemed to call for proper contextualization — such as the context of what was said to the Syro-Phoenician woman and potentially allowing for a greater point to be made there related to those to whom God would offer salvation through Jesus, etc.

    Some pointedly refer to “Pauline authority“ and Christendom’s general rebellion against that in what seems an “us versus them” divide concerning doctrinal truth, pointing again and again to the uniqueness of Paul’s ministry and “his“ gospel. The reported remedy according to some of them is to primarily study Paul’s epistles – – though again, you have to figure out which individual part of them a particular group of adherents will specify / rightly divide (sic). Of course, there’s what Paul himself said about the “holy scriptures” / “sacred writings” and “all scripture“ / “every scripture” in 2 Timothy 3:14-17.

  3. Troy: See graceambassadors.com

    If I go there, can I ever hope to understand why Paul gets top billing for virtually everything in the Christian religion?

  4. JDV: Never mind

    Lots of never mind this but emphasize that.

    At one point, we all used Thompson Chain Reference Bibles, NASB version. We let the Bible wholisticly explain itself as a complete document. The cross-references were important.

    Nowadays, we look it all up using the Internet.

    Thank God for the World Wide Web.

  5. Muff Potter,

    good point, Muff

    the way I see it, for some it is easier to ‘interpret’ Paul in their own image than to attempt to take Christ’s Words and manipulate them . . .

    when Our Lord has spoken, there ARE NO ‘in other words’

    St. Paul’s words have been twisted a lot of ways to ‘support’ a lot of strange agendas but the same groups that do this barely mention Jesus Christ or quote Him in the four Holy Gospels of sacred Scripture.

  6. Muff Potter,

    Muff, I went there and I ain’t goin’ back!
    There’s a sermon ….. can’t remember the title verbatim….. but, ‘Be Followers of Paul’ is pretty close.

    Out with the old, in with the new for them, I guess.

  7. JDV,

    Hats off to you, JDV. Great arguments and explanations!
    Even if I had a very thorough knowledge base in that area, I would not have had the patience to lay out and argue the points half as well as you did.
    Thank you.

  8. christiane: when Our Lord has spoken, there ARE NO ‘in other words’

    Double and triple YES!

    christiane: St. Paul’s words have been twisted a lot of ways to ‘support’ a lot of strange agendas but the same groups that do this barely mention Jesus Christ or quote Him in the four Holy Gospels of sacred Scripture

    In many circles, Paul’s words are selectively followed almost as strictly as ultra-Orthodox Jews follow Torah.
    They don’t do the ‘holy kiss’ thing (so far as I know), but they’ll make damn sure there ain’t a woman in the pulpit.

  9. christiane: interpret’ Paul in their own image

    Projecting. Another pulpit snake oil strategy that you have called out. Good call.

    IMHO, a lot of the theodudebro lit is written in this vein, vain, mindset.

  10. Muff Potter: ultra-Orthodox Jews follow Torah.

    I understand following the Torah.

    But the Talmud? Wild goose chase.

    Evangelical Theodudebro Lit, IMHO, is the Christian version of the Talmud.

    Apparently these writers skip over the Bible verses about not adding to the Word of God.