February 1, 2019

Episode 11 – The Life of the Apostle Paul

Posted in: Show Notes

Welcome back ladies! We just wrapped up our second challenge week where we were reading through the book of Philippians, not once, but TWICE a day. The hope is that you would be a pro on the words of Paul as we get ready to start this new series.  Today, Annabel and Jill are digging further into the background of Philippians as the discuss its author, Paul.

  • Knowing the context of whatever you are reading in Scripture is important! When we play the game of “Bible roulet” it is hard to understand what God is communicating through the big picture of His story.  
  • It gives you TRUE application of the text when you understand who/why/what it was originally intended for.  This stage is called “comprehension”
  • “Interpretation”–what does this mean?
  • “Application”–how do I apply this?  It is tempting to jump right to this stage, but we have to first comprehend and interpret the text.  
  • Paul is the author of the book of Philippians.  He wrote this letter to the early church.
  • Paul wrote thirteen of the Epistles which is over half the new testament over a time period of about seventeen years.  
  • Scripture interprets scripture and gives background for itself.  
  • We fencounter the character of Paul in the book of Acts.
  • In Acts 7, we first meet Paul as “Saul” at the stoning and execution of Stephen, a Christian martyr.
  • Acts 8:1-3 says, “And Saul approved of his execution. And there arose on that day a great persecution against the church in Jerusalem, and they were scattered throughout the region of Judea and Samaria, except the apostles. Devout men buried Stephen and made great lamentation over him.  But Saul was ravaging the church, and entering house after house, he dragged men and women and committed them to prison.”
  • Paul was a Jew which meant he believed in God and was practicing the laws of the Old Testament.  He believed the ten commandments, He believed in the King of Kings, but He did not believe that the promised Savior had come yet.  He did not believe that Jesus was the Messiah. He believed he was doing right in the eyes of God. He believed that what Christians were teaching was blasphemy.  
  • Acts 9: 1-22
    • Jesus meets Saul on his way to Damascus.  
    • God causes Saul to lose his sight.
    • The Lord tells Ananias to go lay his hands on Saul so he might regain his sight.
    • The Lord commands, and Ananias responds in obedience.
    • The scales fall from Paul’s eyes, He is immediately baptized, and he immediately joins the disciples in preaching that Jesus is the Son of God.
    • Saul, who was once wreaking “havoc” in Jerusalem, is now preaching the Gospel.  
    • God uses whoever he wants to be a “chosen instrument” for His work.
  • The MOMENT Paul was saved, He was able to participate in the work of the Lord.  
  • As new believers, we can immediately proclaim the Gospel, and we do not have to continue walking in shame.  
  • Luke, who is the author of Acts, calls Saul “Paul” for the first time in Acts 13: 9.
  • Some fun facts:
    • It does not tell us in Scripture that Saul was given the new name “Paul” by Jesus in his conversion while on the road to Damascus.  “Paul” is the Greek version of the name Saul which was who he was ministering to during that time.
    • Paul was a tentmaker. The town he was from was well known for producing and exporting goat hair that was highly sought after for making tents.  
    • He went on three major missionary trips.  Acts 13-21 covers these journeys of him going to the Gentiles and planting churches.  
    • Paul brought the message of the Gospel to the Gentiles who were not God’s chosen people, so many of them had not heard of the promise of a Savior to come.  
    • It was on Paul’s second missionary journey that he planted the church of Philippi.  The book of Philippians is a letter to this church, and he actually wrote the letter ten years after the church was founded.  
    • Paul wrote letters to follow-up with the churches that started after he shared the Gospel with them on his missionary journeys.
    • Paul was shipwrecked three times that we can see in Scripture.
    • Acts 27-30 tells the crazy story of Paul getting shipwrecked, landing on the island Malta, getting bit by a snake, and then living in Rome for two years while waiting to be put on trial, sharing the Gospel all throughout the midst of this time.   
  • We cannot always see the whole picture of what the Lord is doing.  We let “shipwrecks” become things we complain about and prevent us from doing the thing the Lord has right in front of us.  
  • Whatever you think of as a hindrance in your life, stop asking the Lord “why” and start asking God “what” you can be doing in the midst of it to serve Him.
  • Paul spends four years in prison and then more years in house arrest for sharing the Gospel, and it doesn’t stop him from doing the thing he wants to do.  He continues telling the people around him about Jesus.
  • All of us are able to do something right where we are.  No matter where you are or whoever you are, if you give your life to Christ, God will absolutely show up and equip you for right now, right where you are, to be used.  
  • Biggest takeaway from Paul: I want to be used.
  • Paul was executed, and 2 Timothy is the last letter Paul wrote while he was waiting to be executed.  

2 Timothy 4:6-7 says, “For I am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time of my departure has come. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.”

We love you ladies.  Do us a favor and share this with someone.  Praying that you would love Jesus more as you reflect on the life of Paul.  

-The OHT team

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