How Did Paul Get His Knowledge
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Bible students know from Paul’s own testimony that he was well educated. “I am indeed a Jew, born in Tarsus of Cilicia, but brought up in this city at the feet of Gamaliel” (Act 22:3 NKJV). Luke also has this comment concerning Gamaliel, “Then one in the council stood up, a Pharisee named Gamaliel, a … [Click to read more …]

Further Study: Paul: Apostle to the Gentiles
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For the relationship between personal conversion and the church, read Ellen G. White, “Individual Independence,” pp. 430–434, in Testimonies for the Church, vol. 3. For a helpful map of the early life of Paul and commentary on his conversion, see The SDA Bible Commentary, vol. 6, pp. 226–234. “Paul had formerly been known as a zealous defender of the Jewish … [Click to read more …]

The Galatian Letter – a Great Read
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I was introduced to Galatians in Bible class many years ago. “Pauline Epsitles” was the name of the teaching unit. The lecturer was a theological academic and the students were a bunch of third and fourth-year undergraduate science students studying for London BSc Part 2 examinations. It was an interesting time. Anybody who has studied … [Click to read more …]

Wednesday: The Gospel Goes to the Gentiles
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Where was the first Gentile church established? What events caused the believers to go there? (Acts 11:19–21, 26). What does that remind you of from Old Testament times? (See Daniel 2.)   The persecution that broke out in Jerusalem after Stephen’s death caused a number of Jewish believers to flee three hundred miles north to Antioch. As capital of the Roman … [Click to read more …]

Tuesday: Saul in Damascus
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During Saul’s encounter with Jesus, he was blinded and then instructed to go to the house of a man named Judas and to wait there for another man, Ananias. No doubt Saul’s physical blindness was a powerful reminder of the greater spiritual blindness that led him to persecute the followers of Jesus. The appearance of … [Click to read more …]

A Look at Galatia
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This map (produced in Bibleworks maps) shows the general area of Galatia, the setting of this quarter’s lessons, in what is now the country of Turkey. It is a region that forms a high plateau over 3000 ft (1000 m) in elevation and would have been more comfortable for Paul than Tarsus would have been … [Click to read more …]

Monday: Saul’s Conversion
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“And he said, ‘Who are You, Lord?’ Then the Lord said, ‘I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting. It is hard for you to kick against the goads’”(Acts 9:5, NKJV). Although Saul’s persecution of the early church begins rather inconspicuously (as he only holds the coats of Stephen’s executioners), it quickly intensifies (see Acts 8:1–3; 9:1, 2, 13, … [Click to read more …]