Paul of Tarsus

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Analyse the contribution that Paul of Tarsus had on the development and expression of Christianity. Paul of Tarsus, originally Saul grew up as a Pharisee, seeing Christianity as a movement that undermined religious traditions and often went around imprisoning and killing Christians to prevent this. On the road to Syrian, the city of Damascus, Saul had an encounter with the ascended Jesus who appeared to him from heaven, blinding him and performed a miracle that changed his life forever; Saul became a Christian and later changed his name to Paul. He was a powerful preacher and became a great missionary, spreading the news about Jesus to many people. After this encounter Paul became a very significant individual who used letters and his writing to powerfully contribute to towards the development of Christianity. Christianity began as a sect out of Judaism and as a follower individuals believed strictly in the laws of Mosses which included dietary restrictions and the act of circumcision. Those that were non Christian Jews (Gentiles) were viewed as unclean and of inferior quality. Paul challenged the ideas of Judaism in aim to veer Christianity away from Gods laws and political goals, highlighting Jesus as a figure of universal salvation. “The fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace patience, kindness, goodness, fullfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Galatians 5:22-23.” Paul’s powerful statements such as Galatians 5:22-23 demonstrates his intentions to provoke Christianity as a world religion, focused on individual belief and ethics rather than rituals or Mosaic Law. Paul continued to challenge Christianity with his ideas and interpretations of God’s word; this is demonstrated through his significant proportion of writing in the New Testament. While it can be argued that Paul’s writings incorporated no direct quotes from Jesus
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