Flashcards in NT: Exam 2 Deck (60):
(1 Corinth) Greek philosophical background and world-view
-HUMANISN: if it can't be felt or experience with the human body it isn't real - it's all about the body
-INTELLECTUALISM: if it can't be reasoned rationally or discerned intellectually it can't be real - it's all about the mind
(1 Corinth) Lots of issues/messed-up church–Factions forming due to intellectualism
(A city in Greece, influenced by Greek Philosophy)
“Ancient Corinth was a city of debauchery, lewdness, and evil. Even by pagan standards the Corinthians were notoriously sensual and immoral (incest). Their very religion itself centered around the worship of Aphrodite (Venus) and included the sacrificing of chastity by virgins. Drunkenness, lasciviousness, and sexual sin were proverbial. And as is natural in such a society, the people of the Roman colony of Corinth were given to faction and strife, and to the solving of moral issues through philosophical contention.”
Corinth and Unity (A Church Divided Over Leaders)
"...all of you agree with one another in what you say and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly united in mind and thought."
"What I mean is this: One of you says, “I follow Paul”; another, “I follow Apollos”...still another, “I follow Christ.”
Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Were you baptized in the name of Paul?"
Lawsuits brought to non-believers
(1 Corinth) View of Christ’s crucifixion
"...but we preach Christ crucified: a stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles..."
“Stumbling-block” = offense, scandal, trip-wire that sets off a trap (Greek: skandalon)
“A major stumbling block of the Jews in Jesus’ day, for instance, was their expectation about what the Messiah would do when He came, such as emancipating them politically. But Jesus of Nazareth was not such an emancipator; thus to the Jews His death was a confirming stumbling block!… The Greeks, on the other hand, regarded the whole idea of a crucified Messiah as foolishness.” (the body and resurrection seems like a foolish idea)
To Gentiles: the idea of worshipping a convicted criminal was foolish
(1 Corinth) 1 Cor. 3 and body is a temple
*Y’all together as a group
(i.e. the church congregation) are the temple of God
*Temple = metaphor for Church
(1 Corinth) Sexual immorality and Paul’s directions about it in Corinth
"...hand this man over to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, so that his spirit may be saved on the day of the Lord."
*“Deliver to Satan” = excommunicate
"...not associate with anyone who claims to be a brother or sister but is sexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or slanderer, a drunkard or swindler. Do not even eat with such people."
* “fornicators” = non-members
* “Brother” = church member
* “eat” = have fellowship with, they cannot partake of the sacrament
*Don’t hang out with Church members who openly break commandments
physical vs. sexual appetite (food vs. sexual intimacy)
Do you not know that he who unites himself with a prostitute is one with her in body? For it is said, “The two will become one flesh.” But whoever is united with the Lord is one with him in spirit
(1 Corinth) Question from Corinthian saints and Paul’s response about issue of marriage (married/single/divorced/ missionaries/ part-member households, etc) and sex within marriage
*Some Corinthian saints wrote a letter to Paul claiming that it was a good thing to shun marriage and sexual desire.
*Paul writes back and declares that the general rule is that men and women should get married.
Unmarried/widows: It is good for them to stay unmarried but if they cannot control themselves, they should marry, for it is better to marry than to burn with passion.
Married: A wife must not separate from her husband. But if she does, she must remain unmarried or else be reconciled to her husband. And a husband must not divorce his wife.
If any brother has a wife who is not a believer and she is willing to live with him, he must not divorce her. (vice versa) For the unbelieving husband has been sanctified through his wife. Otherwise your children would be unclean, but as it is, they are holy. But if the unbeliever leaves, let it be so.
* “Unmarried” = “widowers”
* “Abide” = “remain / stay”
*Paul’s gift / ability is to remain unmarried (the gift of celibacy)
*Paul wants widows and widowers remain as they (and Paul) are: unmarried.
*Let them marry, who don’t have this gift. It is better to satisfy your sexual drive in marriage, than outside of it
*Paul advocated temporary celibacy because of the urgent need for missionaries, just like we do today! (To the virgins)
*Paul felt that single missionaries can devote themselves to the Lord more without having to worry about family back home.
*In theory at least, single elders or sisters won’t be distracted by girlfriends or boyfriends back homee
(1 Corinth) Sacrament
(1 Cor. 11:23-25)
23 For I received from the Lord what I also passed on to you: The Lord Jesus, on the night he was betrayed, took bread, 24 and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, “This is my body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of me.” 25 In the same way, after supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood; do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me.”
*Earliest ref. to sacrament (earlier than Gospels) = It was symbolic (“in remembrance”), not literal (“transubstantiation”).
*Only ref to sacrament in Paul’s letters. If Paul didn’t mention it here, we wouldn’t know he knew about it.
*Conclusion: Paul’s letters don’t tell us all he knew. Paul knew much more than he tells us in his letters
(1 Corinth) Dress code for women
*In 1st century A.D. culturally conservative standards of modesty were different than today.
*In conservative society, sight of a woman’s hair on her head was considered immodest.
*In conservative society, it was husband’s exclusive prerogative to see his wife’s hair uncovered.
*Don’t take offense at Paul’s cultural standards of modesty. Seek to understand the context, and then apply what general principles you can. (Not everything will be directly applicable!)
*Because of his culture, Paul had some attitudes toward women that we don’t share in our culture.
Paul simply wants women to adhere to the culturally conservative standard of modesty
(similar to what we do today)
(1 Corinth) eating meat sacrificed to idols
*I know that the idols are nothing and if I eat meat offered to them, it won’t hurt me.
*But if I know that a “weak” Christian is watching, and he/she will be encouraged to participate in pagan sacrifice by what they see me doing, I will not eat the meat.
*Although I have proper knowledge that it is harmless, it is more important that I try not to hurt others (esp. members), than to get my way because I am right.
*Go ahead to the feast and eat; it won’t hurt you. But if the host makes a big deal that the meat was offered to idols, don’t eat.
*This is so your host and the others won’t think you approve of sacrifice to idols.
*Go ahead and buy meat at the market; just don’t ask any questions
(1 Corinth) Place of spiritual gifts,
Spiritual Gifts- "“But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal.”/ Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. (12:7)
-a message of wisdom
-a message of knowledge
-gifts of healing
-distinguishing between spirits
-speaking in different kinds of tongues
-the interpretation of tongues
*Paul and Barnabas were apostles, but may not have been members of the Twelve.
(1 Corinth) [Place of spiritual gifts]...specifically Tongues and Prophets
*There are two primary manifestations of the gift of tongues.
1) to speak in known languages
2) to speak in unknown languages
*The gift of tongues should be a means to an end, and not an end in and of itself (i.e. not just to impress people).
*The end should be edification through divine communication (i.e. revelation, knowledge, prophecy, doctrine, etc.)
*If you don’t edify or communicate something, it doesn’t do any good to speak in an unknown tongue.
*Paul makes rules for speaking in tongues at church.
*Only a few may speak in tongues; they must speak one at a time; and they must have an interpreter. (if not, don’t speak in tongues)
[there has to be a purpose and has to have a translator]
*The spirit of prophecy (= the gifts of the spirit) should be subject to the prophets (= those who have the gifts).
*Those who have the gifts should be in control of the gifts, and not vise versa.
*There must be order, communication, and learning in the church, for God is the author of peace, not confusion.
(1 Corinth) Charity a sine qua non [refers to an indispensable and essential action, condition, or ingredient] for salvation
Definition of Charity (Faith, Hope, Charity)
Pure love of Christ.
a) We love Christ.
b) We love others w/ a Christlike love.
c) Christ loves us. (1 John 4:8, 19)
Without charity we are NOTHING
(1 Corinth) Resurrection
*If Christ did not rise from the dead, we are liars, because we have testified that WE HAVE SEEN HIM WITH OUR OWN EYES!
"Without the Resurrection, the gospel of Jesus Christ becomes a litany of wise sayings and seemingly unexplainable miracles — but sayings and miracles with no ultimate triumph. No, the ultimate triumph is in the ultimate miracle: for the first time in the history of mankind, one who was dead raised himself into living immortality…. The witnesses of this wonderful occurrence cannot be impeached.” - Howard W. Hunter
(1 Corinth) Baptism for the dead
*Some Corinthian saints are preaching against the resurrection of Christ
*(i.e. he may have died for our sins, but he is not alive again).
*Why do you baptize for the dead if you don’t believe in the resurrection?
*If the dead won’t be resurrected, there is no need for baptism for the dead.
Baptism for the Dead
-use it as a proof for the resurrection
-did not happen in the temple
(1 Corinth) Celestial & terrestrial bodies
*“Terrestrial” = “earthly”; and “Celestial” = “heavenly”
*There are different kinds of terrestrial/earthly bodies
(i.e. men, beasts, fish, birds)
*There are different kinds of celestial/heavenly (resurrected) bodies (i.e. sun, moon , stars).
*Paul is simply contrasting terrestrial/earthly/mortal bodies with celestial/heavenly/resurrected bodies.
-Men/Beasts/Fish/Birds, Corruption, Dishonor, Weakness, Natural Body
-Sun/Moon/Stars, Incorruption, Glory, Power, Spiritual Body
*But Paul was contrasting mortal and resurrected bodies
Resurrected bodies are differentiated by the kind of glory they can endure.
*“Flesh and blood” is simply a reference to “mortal.”
*Mortal bodies will not inherit the celestial kingdom.
*Resurrected bodies do not have blood.
There are heavenly body, and mortal (earthly bodies)
We have an earthly but when we get resurrected we get a heavenly body
There will be a physical resurrection
Celestial bodies(glows like the sun) are different
(2 Corinth) appears to be two different letter (likely at least 5 different letters total)
Paul’s First Visit
Letter A (1 Cor 5:9 indicates that Paul had written Corinth after he had left warning the saints against dealings with immoral people)
Letter B (1 Corinthians, written from Ephesus on 3rd Journey)
Paul’s Second, “Painful” Visit
Letter C (Letter written “with many tears,” 2 Cor 2:3-4; 7:8-9)
Letter D (2 Corinthians 1-9, written from Macedonia)
Letter E (2 Corinthians 10-13, written as an addendum or sequel to Letter D)
Paul’s Possible Third Visit
*2 Corinthians is a very difficult letter to interpret
*Paul seems to jump around from point to point and to digress into tangents quite a bit
*Paul’s tone varies
(ch. 7 is conciliatory; chs. 10-13 are argumentative)
*Many scholars have proposed that 2 Cor. is a compilation of a few fragments of different letters (all spliced together into one)
*Even if 2 Cor. is one unified letter, it is a very mixed letter
*Did the Corinthians follow Paul’s counsel the first time?
*Paul told (threatened?) the Corinthians that he would come visit them again and take care of the problems himself.
(2 Corinth) earnest of the Spirit
*“sealed” = set his seal (i.e stamp of approval) on us. The seal is the Holy Ghost
*“given us the earnest of the Spirit” = given us his Holy Spirit as the earnest payment (i.e. down-payment on eternal life)
*I need to “do my best” to be “in the covenant” (have God’s stamp of approval).
*How do I know when I am “doing my best” / am “in the covenant” / have God’s stamp of approval? = If I have the gifts of the Spirit in my life!
The Earnest of the spirit? What is it?
As used by Paul it means that the Lord gives us His Holy Spirit in this life as a foretaste of the joy of eternal life. The Spirit is also the Lord’s surety that He will fulfill His promise to give eternal life to the faithful”
When we feel the Spirit of the Lord, we can know that we are accepted of the Lord and that His promises are in effect in our lives.
(2 Corinth) purpose of writing epistle?
* “without our measure” = beyond our right
*I have the apostolic right to declare my authority to you boldly and without apology, even if some may think I am boasting.
*2nd purpose of 2 Cor.: To defend his apostolic authority.
*(Remember 1st purpose: To apologize for harsh letter!)
Titus brought him news from Corinth that an earlier letter Paul had sent had been well received by the Saints there. The Corinthian branch was making progress, but Paul also learned of false teachers there who were
corrupting the pure doctrines of Christ. Sometime after Paul’s initial visit to Corinth and a probable second visit, when Paul seems to have chastised some of the Saints, preachers from the Jerusalem area came to Corinth and began teaching the Saints that they must adopt Jewish practices, contrary to Paul’s teachings. Much of 2 Corinthians addresses the problems caused by these unwelcome teachers. Paul referred to them as “false apostles” and “deceitful workers,” who were “transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ”. Some of these men accused Paul of dishonest actions and even challenged his authority as an Apostle. Paul’s letter addressed both those who desired more of his words and those who
had neither the desire to repent nor the inclination to accept his counsel. In general, the text of 2 Corinthians reveals several purposes of this letter:
(1) to express gratitude to and strengthen those Saints who responded favorably to his previous letter
(2) to warn of false teachers who corrupted the pure doctrines of Christ
(3) to defend his personal character and authority as an Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ
(4) to encourage a generous financial offering from the Corinthian Saints to the impoverished Saints of Jerusalem
(2 Corinth) unequally yoked
*Don’t marry (“be yoked with”) non-members!
*[Also, don’t marry members who don’t believe the same as you — you won’t be able to change them!]
*Paul earlier (1 Cor 7) said if your spouse is a non-member, don’t break up the family, but Paul was speaking of couples who are already married, and then one spouse joins the church.
-if you're dating a nonmember, do not enter a covenant relationship with those that don't believe the same things you do
(2 Corinth) new testament
“testament” = covenant (Greek: diathēkē)
The New Testament as a collection of books did not exist at this point in time.
God has commissioned church members, to be ministers of the new covenant (which is the gospel) as opposed to the old covenant (which is the Law of Moses)
-made us ministers of the new covenant
-Christ has come to minister a new living covenant
(2 Corinth) Paul is angry enough that he feels forced to defend his apostolic authority against the “super-apostles”
* “chiefest apostles” = super apostles
*Those so-called “super apostles” are really false apostles! Don’t listen to them—they are deceivers!
In contrast to the false apostles in Corinth, Paul testified that he was an authentic Apostle, who was in no way inferior to “the very chiefest apostles." In 2 Corinthians 12:12, Paul invited the Corinthian members to consider if his works among them were signs of a true Apostle that authenticated his ministry.
False Apostles (2 Cor. 11:13)
-evidence of apostasy within
(2 Corinth) third heaven
-the vision of the celestial kingdom
-understands what's going on
-sees the visions in heaven
“Paul ascended into the third heavens, and he could understand the three principal rounds of Jacob’s ladder—the telestial, the terrestrial, and the celestial glories or kingdoms, where Paul saw and heard things which were not lawful for him to utter. I could explain a hundred fold more than I ever have of the glories of the kingdoms manifested to me in the vision, were I permitted, and were the people prepared to receive them.”
By sharing this experience—one that neither his detractors nor the “false apostles” in Corinth could match—Paul reinforced his authority as an Apostle of Jesus Christ.
(2 Corinth) thorn in the flesh
*To keep me humble, God gave me a “thorn in the flesh” or “messenger of Satan”.
*Was this a human enemy (super apostles?), a temptation, sickness, or weakness?
*We don’t know — but Paul was imperfect.
*Paul asked God to get rid of it.
-God allowed Paul to have a thorn in the flesh
-reminds him that he needs god, makes him humble
-thorns could have been guilt, apostasy of the church, the weakness of the people he teaches, his pride
(Romans) How do the Gentiles live the law of God?
Through him we received grace and apostleship to call all the Gentiles to the obedience that comes from faith for his name’s sake. And you also are among those Gentiles who are called to belong to Jesus Christ.
To all in Rome who are loved by God and called to be his holy people:
Grace and peace to you from God our Father and from the Lord Jesus Christ.
First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is being reported all over the world.
(Romans) What allowed Abraham to be justified?
Abraham justified through FAITH, works
Why Abraham instead of Moses (for a Jewish crowd)
-Abraham didn't live the Law of Moses and was righteous ( the first father)
-was righteousness before he was circumcised, his righteousness was a result of the law
Since Abraham lived centuries before the law of Moses was given, he was an ideal example of someone who was justified through faith in Jesus Christ and not through the law of Moses
Thus, Paul was able to show from scripture that individuals were not justified through obedience to the law of Moses—they were justified through faith in God’s promises.
(Romans) Justification, Sanctification, Grace, Faith, and so on
*To be treated by God as if you were innocent with respect to His laws
(It happens when you enter and keep the gospel covenant = justification by grace through faith)
being declared not guilty
being born again
being alive in Christ
being “perfect in Christ”
being “yoked”/united w/ Christ
becoming holy and pure
obtaining the divine nature
becoming as Christ
“It is by grace that we are saved,
after all we can do.”
“After all we can do,
it is by grace that we are saved.”
*Yes, good works are required.
*But good works do not save us!
The main idea of the word is divine means of help or strength, given through the bounteous mercy and love of Jesus Christ.
(Romans) What does Paul say about the advantages of being of the House of Israel?
Israel Foreordained: Election of Grace
Elder Melvin J. Ballard wrote: "There was a group of souls tested, tried, and proven before they were born into the world, and the Lord provided a lineage for them. That lineage is the house of Israel, the lineage of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and their posterity. Through this lineage were to come the true and tried souls that had demonstrated their righteousness in the spirit world before they came here" (The Three Degrees of Glory, pp. 218-219).
the Greek term translated as predestinate means “to appoint beforehand” and refers
to the foreordination some people receive, based on God’s foreknowledge, to follow Jesus Christ and become like Him
(Romans) What does Paul say about human nature? Why do we sin?
Why are we sinners? Blame our sinfulness on Adam. We received the consequences, fallen state, tempted to sin
*Everyone (even Paul) struggles with their fallen nature…which tempts us to do things we know are wrong.
For the natural man is an enemy to God, and has been from the fall of Adam, and will be, forever and ever, unless he yields to the enticings of the Holy Spirit, and puts off the natural man and becomes a saint through the atonement of Christ the Lord.” (Mosiah 3:19)
(Romans) “Joint-Heirs”/Are the Jews still God’s chosen people?
*Being a literal descendant of Israel (a Jew), does not guarantee you are part of God’s covenant.
*Being a non-Israelite (Gentile) does not guarantee you are not part of God’s covenant.
*Covenant status is not based on your genealogy but rather if you keep the promise (covenant) made to Abraham
*Real covenant status is an inward quality
*When we show the faith and obedience of Abraham…
*Then we are Abraham’s children.
“The principle of adoption brings those who are not Abraham’s descendants but who accept the gospel into his family. The Lord accounts them heirs of the covenant with its blessings and obligations; they become members of the house of Israel… We thus make no distinction between the literal seed of Abraham and his heirs through adoption, for they are ‘all one in Christ Jesus’.”
-Kent P. Jackson
(Acts) Know the following people:
Aquila and Priscilla
Herod Agrippa II
Aquila and Priscilla - Paul met a Jew named Aquila, a native of Pontus, who had recently come from Italy with his wife Priscilla, because Claudius had ordered all Jews to leave Rome. Paul went to see them, and because he was a tentmaker as they were, he stayed and worked with them. Then he left the brothers and sisters and sailed for Syria, accompanied by Priscilla and Aquila. They arrived at Ephesus, where Paul left Priscilla and Aquila. Meanwhile a Jew named Apollos, he began to speak boldly in the synagogue. When Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they invited him to their home and explained to him the way of God more adequately.
Eutychus - Paul spoke to the people and kept on talking until midnight. Seated in a window was a young man named Eutychus, who was sinking into a deep sleep as Paul talked on and on. When he was sound asleep, he fell to the ground from the third story and was picked up dead. Paul went down, threw himself on the young man and put his arms around him. “Don’t be alarmed,” he said. “He’s alive!” The people took the young man home alive and were greatly comforted.
James - Brother of the Lord; known as James the Just. He occupied an important position in the Church of Jerusalem
Peter - disciple
Paul - I am a Jew, born in Tarsus of Cilicia, but brought up in this city. I studied under Gamaliel and was thoroughly trained in the law of our ancestors...
Lydia - a dealer in purple cloth
Silas - Paul's companion
Luke - writer of Acts
Felix - governor, procurator of Judea at the time of Paul’s arrest by the Roman military authorities
Festus - Felix was succeeded by Porcius Festus, Paul’s Trial Before Festus, Festus Consults King Agrippa
Sanhedrin - The Jewish senate and the highest native court in both civil and ecclesiastical matters. Under the presidency of the high priest it regulated the whole internal affairs of the Jewish nation.
Herod Agrippa II - king, Agrippa said to Festus, “This man could have been set free if he had not appealed to Caesar.”
(Acts) the incident at the temple in Jerusalem
Paul followed the Church elders’ suggestion that he visit the temple and participate in the Jewish purification rites. At one point, Jews from Asia confronted Paul in the temple and caused a riot against him. They accused him of teaching against the law of Moses and the temple and of bringing a Gentile into the inner courts of the temple, where Gentiles were forbidden. Though Paul was innocent of these charges, they were capital offenses, and Paul’s life was in peril as the crowd dragged him out of the temple and began to beat him.
(Acts) Paul on trial before Sanhedrin
Paul protested that he was a Roman citizen and was therefore protected from examination
*Claudius Lysias wanted to hear about Paul from the Sanhedrin (Acts 22:30).
*Paul knew he would not get a fair hearing from them.
*Paul wisely diverted the attention of the angry Sanhedrin away from himself, and onto something else. (talked about being a Pharisee)
(Acts) Paul’s appeal to Caesar
Paul realized that his life would be in danger if he returned to Jerusalem to be tried, as Festus suggested he do. Therefore, Paul chose to appeal to Caesar instead. As a Roman citizen, Paul had the right to appeal to have his
case tried directly before Caesar in Rome.
(Acts) Journey to Rome
Due to his appeal, Festus had no choice but to send Paul to Rome.
Paul departs for Rome; during a severe storm he prophesies of a shipwreck, but that none will lose their lives; shipwreck at Melita (Malta)
Paul is unharmed by a snake’s bite, proclaimed a god by inhabitants of Malta, heals the sick there
Journey to Rome completed & Paul placed under house arrest, where he preaches to Jews & Gentiles
(Philemon) Slavery in ancient world
-Legal under Law of Moses for 7 years
-Could become voluntary after time expired
-Numerous legal rites
-ROMAN SLAVERY NOT BASED ON RACE
-Master owned the labor and the slave
+no crime to abuse or kill your own slave
+this did happen, but it was not very common
-Not necessarily abusive relationship (it was an OCCUPATION)
+plenty of slaves were well-educated and hired as tutors
+some slaves were more educated than their masters
+slaves could hold government or business leadership positions
+slaves could own property (even their own slaves!)
Ways to become a slave in Roman Empire:
*Prisoner of war
*Parents sell children
*Punishment for crime
*Exposure of infants
*Sell yourself (if you were in debt or if you couldn’t get other employment)
Why did Paul not abolish slavery for Christians?
*Remember that Roman slavery was not simply a mirror image of cruelty associated with slavery of pre-Civil War United States.
*Paul probably viewed slavery generally the way we view “employment” today.
*If you are “under contract” to your master (or employer), honor it.
*If you don’t like your situation as a slave (i.e. your “job”) and can legally get set free from it, go ahead (and find other employment).
*If you can’t, then make the best of the situation.
(Philemon) we are slaves to Christ
“The term ‘redeem’ means literally ‘to buy back.’ Satan owned us; we were his slaves, and Christ bought us back. But Jesus didn’t buy us with his own blood so that we could belong to ourselves — we now belong to him. That’s why he is the Master and we are his servants… We are his servants, bought and paid for with his precious blood.”
*We are all servants of Christ, to be obedient to his will.
*We are all to serve one another, as Christ did.
(Philemon) Paul’s role as mediator
*Paul wants Philemon to receive back his slave Onesimus as a “brother” in the Gospel (Paul does not abolish slavery for Christians; cf. Paul’s advice to slaves in Eph. & Col.).
*Paul has Onesimus go back home to Colossae. Why? Why not just leave Onesimus alone?
*Onesimus is not Paul’s slave, but Paul’s friend.
*Onesimus is still owned by Philemon and has “stolen” himself. If Onesimus is caught (as a runaway slave), he is in big trouble.
*If Paul is caught harboring a runaway slave, Paul is in big trouble.
“Let every man abide in the same calling wherein he was called. Art thou called being a servant? Care not for it; but if thou may be made free, use it… Let every man, wherein he is called, therein abide with God.” (1 Cor. 7:20-21,24)
*“Abide in the same calling” = “remain in the same circumstance”
*”Wherein he was called” = “when he was converted.”
*If you are “called/converted” when you are a slave, don’t worry (you won’t miss out on any blessings!—slaves and free get same blessings)
*If you are a slave, and want to and are able to get freed, go ahead.
*In the Gospel, we are all free (and slaves to Christ!)
Symbolism of Philemon
Who could Paul represent? How?
Who could Philemon represent? How?
How is Onesimus like us?
Redeemer = Go’el
To redeem = “to buy back”
(Philippians) Happy epistle—Why?
The words for “joy” and “fellowship” appear nearly 20 times in Philippians
“This Epistle is a letter of friendship, full of affection, confidence, good counsel and good cheer. It is the happiest of St. Paul’s writings, for the Philippians were the dearest of his children in the faith. . . ."
(Philippians) Article of Faith 13
The Admonition of Paul (Phili 4:8)
We believe in being honest, true, chaste, benevolent, virtuous, and in doing good to all men; indeed, we may say that we follow the admonition of Paul—We believe all things, we hope all things, we have endured many things, and hope to be able to endure all things. If there is anything virtuous, lovely, or of good report or praiseworthy, we seek after these things.
Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.
“Made himself of no reputation” = “he emptied himself” (kenosis)
*Emptied himself of his own will to do the will of God the Father
*Came to earth as human
*Died upon the cross
(Philippians) ancient hymn & meaning
*Paul counsels the Philippian saints to be unified, humble, and charitable.
*This is the example that Christ set for them.
*How did Christ set this example? (Paul quotes an early Christ-hymn/poem which talks about this—Philip. 2:6-11)
“Christ Jesus, who being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God; But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men; and being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.”
“In the form of God” = “in nature/status like God”
(Paul is not merely talking about shape or looks, but divine nature and status)
“Robbery” = “something to be clutched to one’s self & not given up”
“Made himself of no reputation” = “he emptied himself” (kenosis)
*The Book of Mormon calls this doctrine: “The Condescension of God”
*Christ condescended to give up his divine status, come to earth as a human, and suffer death upon the cross.
(Ephesians) General epistle
Appears to be more of a stake or general letter, rather than to a specific community
-“to the Ephesians” lacking in most mss.
-Lacks customary list of names at the end, as well as repeated references to “all the saints.”
-Tends to discuss church in universal, rather than specific, terms.
= “foreordained us”
= “to choose or decide beforehand”
“Foreordination is like any other blessing — it is a conditional bestowal subject to our faithfulness. Prophecies foreshadow events without determining the outcome, because of a divine foreseeing of outcomes. So foreordination is a conditional bestowal of a role, a responsibility, or a blessing which, likewise, foresees but does not fix the outcome.” (Neal A. Maxwell, “A More Determined Discipleship,” Ensign [Feb. 1979], 70-71).
According to Paul, what is being foreordained?
= Foreordained to “the adoption AS HIS children”
*We were foreordained to (among other things) enter into the covenant of baptism and become the children of Christ.
(Ephesians) earnest of the spirit/holy spirit of promise
*The Holy Spirit of Promise is the Holy Ghost (i.e. it is the Holy Spirit which assures us of God’s promises to us)
“The Holy Spirit of Promise is the Holy Ghost who places the stamp of approval upon every ordinance: baptism, confirmation, ordination, marriage. The promise is that the blessings will be received through faithfulness.”
-Joseph Fielding Smith
*“The Holy Spirit of Promise” is our “earnest” money or “down-payment”
*God sends it to us, reminding us that our contract is still valid, concerning our future inheritance.
* What is the “purchased possession” which God has “redeemed” (bought)?
*God has already purchased us (at baptism) and owns us!
*God will eventually pay in full and “redeem” (buy) us.
(In the mean time, God gives us the Holy Ghost as a down-payment)
(Ephesians) emphasis upon unity/Role of Women in home and church
God Made Both One
“Both” what? Both Jews and Gentiles.
“Broken down the middle wall of partition” = made all people equal, no matter their background.
How is it Done? By the atonement (“in his flesh” or “by the cross”).
“No more “strangers or foreigners” = gentiles are no longer outsiders, but all people can be insiders.
Paul taught that all members of the Church should submit themselves to one another, or in other words, place others ahead of themselves. He then explained how the principle of submitting oneself applied in family and household relationships, starting with wives and husbands. For wives, this means
submitting themselves to their husbands as they would to the Lord; for husbands, this means loving their wives as Christ loved the Church and gave Himself for it. If couples are truly united, then any sacrifice made on behalf of one’s spouse inevitably brings blessings to oneself; thus, “he that loveth his wife loveth himself”.
Paul’s counsel that wives should submit to their
husbands (see Ephesians 5:22) does not justify maledominion. People in Greco-Roman society regarded the father as being the head of the extended family and the absolute authority over the entire household. Therefore, Paul’s teachings represented a dramatic change to these traditional ideas because he defined husbands’ and fathers’ roles in terms of Christ’s love and sacrifice for the Church.
(Ephesians) armor of God
Armor: Belt, girt (tied around waist)
What it represents: Truth
Protected Part: Loins
Body Part Represent: Our chastity, moral purity
Armor: Breastplate (made of bronze or chain)
What it represents: Righteousness, uprightness
Protected Part: Heart
Body Part Represent: Our affections, emotions,
Armor: Boots (rugged shoes studded with nails for traction)
What it represents: Preparation of the gospel of
Protected Part: Feet
Body Part Represent: Our course in life,actions, places we go, goals
Armor: Shield (large oval made of two layers of wood, held together with iron and leather)
What it represents: Faith
Protected Part: Entire body
Body Part Represent: Our whole soul
Armor: Helmet (made of bronze with leather straps)
What it represents: Salvation
Protected Part: Head
Body Part Represent: Our thoughts, intellect
Armor: Sword (weapon made of steel—only weapon listed)
What it represents: The Spirit, which is the word
Protected Part: Entire body
Body Part Represent: Our whole soul
(Colossians) Colossian Heresy
*Colossae is a Christian congregation where Paul had not personally visited (cf. Paul’s epistle to the Romans)
Details in the Epistle to the Colossians suggest that in the region of Colossae, heretical beliefs and worship practices had developed, blending Christian, Jewish, and pagan ideas. These heresies minimized or denied the divine role of Jesus Christ. Such false ideas threatened the Church but had not yet won over the many Colossian Saints who remained “faithful brethren in Christ”
*Apparently the Colossians were being deceived into believing and practicing various forms of human philosophy (Jewish and/or Gentile philosophy?)
Colossians demonstrates the dangers of intellectual heresy—It shows what can happen when the intellect trumps the spirit.
(Colossians) Jewish/Roman angels
“Worship of angels” = either Jewish archangels or pagan heroes and divine beings (or maybe Christian Gnosticism).
Paul warned the Colossian Saints not to be deceived by those who promoted the worship of angels. Although angels hold a position of honor in God’s kingdom, they are not to be worshipped. The worshipping of angels is evidence that some teachings of Gnosticism were making their way into the Church, since Gnostic philosophy held that God communicated with mortals through angels and that the physical body was evil. Paul denounced this false religious system.
(Colossians) Invisible God
*“Invisible” = “unseen”
*Christ made all things (including any other so-called divine beings).
“Consist” = “have life”
As the creator, the power of Christ brings life (physical and spiritual) to all things.
*As the Creator and the Firstborn, Christ is the “preeminent” divine being
*(Christ is better than all those other angels or divine beings you are worshipping).
Paul said Jesus Christ is “the image [meaning the likeness or manifestation] of the invisible God”. By describing God as invisible, Paul meant that He is “unseen” but not necessarily “unseeable” or “incapable of being seen.” The Apostle’s point was that although God is presently unseen by our human eyes, Jesus Christ’s appearance and character demonstrate what the Father is like. This is true of the Father’s spiritual nature and His physical nature, as we learn through latter-day revelation and the Prophet Joseph Smith’s eyewitness account of the Father’s physical body
(1 Corinth) Audience
Modern readers of 1 Corinthians can find strength in Paul’s words to the Saints in Corinth, who struggled with disunity, false doctrines, and immoral wickedness in the society in which they lived. Paul addressed a variety of gospel topics in this letter, such as how to promote unity in the Church, how to learn the things of God, the role of the physical body as a temple for the Holy Ghost, the nature of spiritual gifts, and the reality of the Resurrection.
(1 Corinth) Where & When
Early in his third missionary journey, Paul went to Ephesus, where he preached for approximately three years (see Acts 19:10; 20:31). It was during this time— sometime between a.d. 54 and 57 (see 1 Corinthians 16:8)—that Paul wrote letters to the Corinthian branch, including the epistle known as 1 Corinthians. This epistle was likely written earlier than any of the other New Testament books, including the Gospels. If this
is true, Paul’s brief references to the Last Supper, the Crucifixion, and the Resurrection of Jesus Christ found in 1 Corinthians 11:23–26 and 15:3–4 are the earliest New Testament accounts of these events.
As a wealthy trade center, Corinth attracted people from throughout the Roman Empire, making it one of the most diverse cities in the area. Idol worship dominated Corinthian religious culture, and there were numerous temples and shrines throughout the city. At the time of Paul’s ministry, the Corinthians had a reputation of being grossly immoral. For instance, ritual prostitution was reportedly practiced at the temple of Aphrodite.
Paul had established a Christian branch in Corinth during his second missionary journey. Paul remained in Corinth for 18 months, pro- claiming the gospel and organizing the Church. Later, while Paul was preaching in Ephesus during his third missionary journey, he received communication from Church members in Corinth. He wrote a response to the branch, but unfortunately this epistle was lost. Later, Paul received another report from Church members in Corinth concerning problems in the Church there. Hence, the epistle known today as 1 Corinthians is actually Paul’s second letter to members in Corinth.
1 Corinthians makes it clear that Church members lacked unity and that some pagan beliefs and practices had begun to influence their observance of gospel principles and ordinances
Paul’s Second Epistle to the Corinthians stands out for its themes of comfort in the midst of affliction, strength in the midst of weakness (as exemplified by Paul him- self), and the discerning of true teachers from false ones. Paul’s example and teachings recorded in 2 Corinthians serve as a call for all Saints to remain true and faithful to the eternal covenants they have made with God, the Eternal Father, no matter the circumstances or
Shortly after Paul wrote 1 Corinthians, a riot developed in Ephesus in opposition to his teachings, and he departed to Macedonia. It appears that while he was there he wrote 2 Corinthians. In addition to 1 Corinthians, it is believed that Paul wrote two other letters before writing 2 Corinthians. We know about these letters because Paul mentioned them.
While Paul was in Macedonia, Titus brought him news from Corinth that an earlier letter he had sent had been well received by the Saints there. The Corinthian branch was making progress, but Paul also learned of false teachers there who were corrupting the pure doctrines of Christ. Sometime after Paul’s initial visit to Corinth and a probable second visit, when Paul seems to have chastised some of the Saints, preachers from the Jerusalem area came to Corinth and began teaching the Saints that they must adopt Jewish practices, contrary to Paul’s teachings. Much of 2 Corinthians addresses the problems caused by these unwelcome teachers. Paul referred to them as “false apostles” and “deceitful workers,” who were “transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ”. Some of these men accused Paul of dishonest actions and even challenged his authority as an Apostle.
Paul’s letter addressed both those who desired more of his words and those who had neither the desire to repent nor the inclination
to accept his counsel. In general, the text of 2 Corinthians reveals several purposes of this letter:
(1) to express gratitude to and strengthen those Saints who responded favorably to his previous letter
(2) to warn of false teachers who corrupted the pure doctrines of Christ
(3) to defend his personal character and authority as an Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ (4) to encourage a generous financial offering from the Corinthian Saints to the impoverished Saints of Jerusalem
The Epistle to the Romans is regarded by many people as a scriptural masterpiece and the greatest of Paul’s epistles. Written near the end of Paul’s missionary journeys, this epistle contains some of Paul’s most developed thinking, including his most complete explanation of the doctrine of justification by faith in Jesus Christ rather than by the performances of the law of Moses. It contains many teachings about the doctrines of salvation and the practical application of those doctrines to daily life. Moving passages throughout the epistle teach of all humanity’s need for the Atonement of Jesus Christ and of the hope and peace that all people may find in Christ.
It was written after the Epistles to the Galatians and the Corinthians, and it refines many teachings from those earlier epistles. Several clues suggest that Paul wrote Romans during the three months he stayed in Corinth.
The Epistle to the Romans is addressed to members of the Church in Rome. The origins of the Church in Rome are unknown but probably date to soon after the day of Pentecost, when Jews visiting from Rome heard Peter preach. Though Paul had not yet been to Rome, he wrote greetings to specific Saints he knew either by prior acquaintance or through others who had lived in Rome, such as Priscilla and Aquila. There seem to be at least three main reasons why Paul sent the Epistle to the Romans:
To prepare for his future arrival in Rome. For years Paul had wanted to preach the gospel in Rome. Paul had “fully preached the gospel” from Jerusalem to Illyricum - from the center of the Jewish world to the threshold of Rome. He hoped the Church in Rome would provide him assistance and serve as a base from which he could serve a mission to Spain.
To clarify and defend his teachings. Paul faced repeated opposition from individuals who misunderstood or distorted his teachings about the law of Moses and faith in Christ. Paul evidently had reason to suspect that such misunderstandings had reached the Church members in Rome, so he wrote to alleviate any concerns before he arrived.
To promote unity between Jewish and Gentile members of the Church. In about a.d. 49 the emperor Claudius expelled all Jews, including Jewish Christians, from Rome. By a.d. 54, the year of Claudius’s death, Jews were beginning to return to Rome. Jewish Christians would have returned to predominantly Gentile Christian congregations in Rome, a situation that may have given rise to some of the tensions and problems between Jewish and Gentile Christians. As “the apostle of the Gentiles”, Paul sought to integrate Gentile converts into the Church; yet as a Jew, Paul continued to feel great desire for his own people to accept the gospel. Paul promoted Church unity by teaching how doc- trines of the gospel apply to all Saints
Luke addressed the book of Acts and his Gospel to a man named Theophilus. We do not know who Theophilus was or what positions or honors he held, though he appears
to have been a Christian. Though Luke addressed his writings to a single individual, anyone who reads his writings will find greater understanding of the gospel of Jesus Christ and the early Church.
Philemon is perhaps the most personal of all Paul’s letters, and it clearly illustrates the fact that when people join the Church of Jesus Christ, they become brothers and sisters in the gospel. One principle that Paul taught Philemon was that when a person is offended or hurt by another, it is the injured person’s duty to forgive the wrongdoer.
The Epistle to Philemon was prepared by Paul while the Apostle was in prison, presumably during his house arrest in Rome about a.d. 61 or 62. It was probably written around the same time as Colossians and perhaps Ephesians.
Paul wrote this Epistle to Philemon, a Greek convert who probably lived in Colossae. He allowed a Church congregation to meet in his home. Philemon owned a slave named Onesimus, who had run away from Philemon and then sought help from Paul. Onesimus subsequently converted to the gospel. Paul wrote to Philemon to encourage him to receive Onesimus back without the severe punishments that would usually be inflicted on runaway slaves. Paul said that Onesimus had changed from being “unprofitable” to “profitable” for both Paul and Philemon and that Philemon should “therefore receive him”. More significantly, Paul suggested that Onesimus was now “a brother beloved” since he had come unto the Lord. Paul even offered to make up any financial loss suffered by Philemon because of Onesimus being “unprofitable”. In this letter, Paul neither approved of nor opposed the institution of slavery, but instead he emphasized how Philemon’s identity as a Christian ought to dictate the way he treated his servant.
When Paul wrote his Epistle to the Colossians, false teachings and practices in Colossae were influencing the Saints there and threatening their faith. Similar cultural pressures pose challenges for Church members today. Part of this epistle’s great value lies in how it identifies and exposes falsehoods while emphasizing Jesus Christ’s divinity and saving work. As modern readers deepen their conversion to the Savior—like the Saints in Colossae did—they are more fully protected from deception and sin.
This epistle was written to the faithful Saints in Colossae, a site in modern-day Turkey. Paul instructed the Colossian Saints to share the letter with the members of the Church in nearby Laodicea. Details in the Epistle to the Colossians suggest that in the region of Colossae, heretical beliefs and worship practices had developed, blending Christian, Jewish, and pagan ideas. These heresies minimized or denied the divine role of Jesus Christ. Such false ideas threatened the Church but had not yet won over the many Colossian Saints who remained “faithful brethren in Christ”. In writing this epistle, Paul hoped to communi- cate his personal concern for the Saints, to counteract the false teachings and practices that threatened their faith, to testify of the divinity and preeminence of Christ, and to exhort the Saints to deepen their conversion to the Savior.
In his Epistle to the Philippians, Paul gave the Saints in Philippi encouragement and exhorted them to stand fast in the faith. Paul also exhorted the Saints to claim the unifying and exalting blessings that would come from humbling themselves. Perhaps one of the most important principles Paul taught in Philippians is that trusting in the Lord brings “the peace of God, which passeth all understanding”. Paul’s messages of encouragement in this epistle can help motivate modern readers in their personal efforts to endure faithfully. As members of the Church strive to follow Christ, they too can gain confidence and like Paul declare, “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me”
Philippi was the first place in Europe where Paul formally preached the gospel and established a branch of the Church. One purpose for Paul writing this letter was to express gratitude for the affection and financial assistance the Saints in Philippi had extended to him during his second missionary journey.
Paul also praised the members in Philippi for their faith in Christ and gave them counsel based on information about the city that he had received from a Philippian disciple named Epaphroditus. Paul’s counsel included encouragement to be humble and united. Paul
also warned the Philippians to beware of corrupt Christians, such as those who taught that circumcision was necessary for conversion. Such individuals were known as Judaizers, who falsely claimed that new converts had to submit to the former Old Testament law of circumcision before becoming Christian