PAUL, THE APOSTLE TO THE GENTILES
Paul in his life time had four, possibly five missionary journeys. Being a Roman Citizen and from the Roman City of Troas, a City that was known for its diverse scholastic society and its universities, Paul could freely travel on the Roman Highway throughout the Empire. As a young man he studied in Jerusalem under one of the most famous teachers of the Pharisees.
Paul's first three years as a Christian was spent in Arabia, then he went to Jerusalem for two weeks. Paul became well known as a teacher and an apostle for Christ, not only to the Jewish Christians but he taught many Gentiles the Truth of Jesus. All are created of God but many were and are under the influence of the enemy of God. Christ sent Paul to open the minds and eyes of the Gentiles, to turn them from the power of Satan to The Kingdom of God so that they may receive forgiveness of sins, to have hope in God because of the resurrection of both the righteous and the wicked.
EACH INDIVIDUAL PERSON MAKES THEIR OWN CHOICE TO BECOME A
CHILD OF THE KINGDOM OF GOD THROUGH JESUS CHRIST AND RECEIVE ETERNAL LIFE
AS A GIFT FROM GOD.
Paul taught in Antioch before his first missionary expedition. While in Cyprus, with Barnabas, (COLOUR IN CAMEO) Paul preached of Christ's death and resurrection in every village and the Governor invited him to speak, but a Jewish wizard (magician) kept opposing and interrupting Paul as he was telling the Governor about the Kingdom of God-so by the power of The Holy Spirit Paul commanded that the wizard be struck blind temporally. The High Official believed on Christ and was astonished at the power of God's message. ACTS 13.
God often worked through women, rich and poor. Many opened their homes for Paul to preach and new believers would be filled with joy and with The Holy Spirit. In Galatia (Turkey) a man who was born crippled, heard Paul preach and saw that The Holy spirit was working miracles. Paul called to him to stand up and walk. This miracle made the local people think Paul was a god and they began to worship him. Yet, a few days later Traditional Jewish people who still believed in the Law arrived, they were very jealous of Paul and began to speak against his teachings and the same people who witnessed the miracle of God before, stoned Paul, they thought he was dead and they dragged him out of the city.
The Jewish Teachers of the Law wanted all the Gentiles to follow their man-made rules and some of the Laws given to Moses celebrating the feasts and Sabbaths. Paul made a special trip to Jerusalem, Christian Council was held and Paul was given written documents according to God's word that this was not so which proved the Juadizers were the false teachers.
Both Jews and Gentiles ARE NOW UNDER A NEW COVENANT THAT HAD BEEN PROPHESIED AND FULFILLED IN CHRIST. ACTS 14 &15.
Paul met Lydia, (COLOUR IN CAMEO) a Gentile business woman, in Philippi, Greece on his second missionary trip who had a hunger for spiritual Truth and she found it in Christ, by hearing The Word of God. She was baptised, and publicly declared her confession of faith, (trust and belief) in The Lord Jesus Christ as her Saviour, and so great was her enthusiasm, her whole house hold came to know of Christ and all were baptised. Her transformation was evident, she was eager to give the missionary group her hospitality. Paul and his helpers accepted her invitation to stay at her house as guests. It became common practice for Lydia to show hospitality to travelling Christians as well as holding church meetings at her home. Her home became the first European Church. She was a full co-labourer will Paul for the gospel of Christ. Christians met regularly at her spacious home.
As at Philippi in Greece, Paul delivered a demon-possessed girl in The Name of Jesus Christ, but because this girl belonged to men who made their living from demonic fortune-telling Paul and Silas (Paul's companion) were thrown into jail, stripped, beaten and placed in stocks. Despite this, they sang praises to God. They were divinely rescued in a dramatic way; an earthquake caused the chains of every prisoner to fall off and the doors flew open. The jailer was about to kill himself thinking all the prisoners had run away, but Paul assured him they were all still there. That night the jailer and family were baptised into the family of God and the next morning the judges ordered Paul and Silas to be set free. ACTS 16
Apollos (COLOUR IN CAMEO) a Jew from Alexandria, arrived in the city of Ephesus where the church had been established for three years and decided to speak at the local Synagogue. Priscilla a female teacher of the Word of God and her husband, Aquilla heard him preach of the message of John The Baptist, they noticed he was a very learned man with a thorough knowledge of the Scriptures. He spoke with great zeal, but did not speak of the new life in Christ. They invited him to their home, and explained to him the works of God and more adequately the finished work of God in Christ. Priscilla trained and instructed Apollos in The Word of God and in The knowledge of Christ. He became one of the best speakers of Scripture for the early Church and debate successfully those who opposed the message of Christ. He continued to preach powerfully and enthusiastically. God used his gifts greatly to strengthen, build and encourage the believers in the Church with great boldness. He was greatly used of God and he powerfully refuted Traditional Jewish arguments in public debates. ACTS 18
God is able to reconcile mankind to Himself because all sin has been reckoned to Christ instead of the sinful human race born under Adam, born separated form God. Christ's death was in the place of mankind. To those who faithfully believe that Jesus was God and that He did die for them on The Cross, God counts righteous in Christ, and are reconciled to God. God desires that all would be restored to Him and Christians, who are The Body of Christ throughout the world have the privileged ministry of reconciliation and honour to tell others of the works of Christ, like John, The Baptist. Ever since rebellion alienated humankind from God, He has always established covenant relationships, and initiated an individual's cry, wanting the response of reconciling each one with Himself.
Priscilla and her husband Aquilla were close friends of Paul and often travelled with him. In Ephesus, God, by the power of The Holy Spirit did unusual miracles through Paul so that when parts of Paul's clothing were placed upon sick people they became well, because of the Name of Jesus and the power of The Holy Spirit, and any demons within the people left them. Those who practised black magic of the occult, sorcery and all the tools of the devil, confessed their deeds and burned their books, charts and charms publicly. The books were worth thousands of dollars but now these new believers of Christ had found the true, greater and lasting Power of God. The whole area was stirred by God's message. ACTS 19
Paul had decided to travel and revisit the Christians in Asia Minor and those in Greece, to strengthen and minister to them. On the Way back to Jerusalem, Paul was ministering to a group at Troas, (north-west Turkey today) which went late on into the night. Many lamps were burning and although a lad named Eutychus was sitting in the window for fresh air, he succumbed into a deep sleep, because of the fumes from the burning oil. He fell three stories to his death. Paul went down stairs immediately and lay prostrate upon him and the young man's life was restored to him. Their meeting continued with much joy and continued until daybreak. ACTS 20
Paul travelled many miles preaching, teaching and establishing churches. He did as Christ commanded, "Take up your cross and follow Me". (NEED TO KNOW TEXT) Matthew 10:38 a total commitment to God in all areas of his life. Paul was imprisoned and taken to Rome in chains, for this was God's Plan for him. Jewish Traditional Teachers of the Law, given to Moses did not believe that Jesus, was The Christ, their Messiah, nor that He rose from the dead, (NEED TO KNOW TEXT) yet they could not explain all the wondrous miracles that were done by the power of The Holy Spirit in Jesus' Name. Another added insult to these teachers, was The Holy Spirit (NEED TO KNOW TEXT) continued these miracles on throughout the 'despised' Gentile Nations. The acts of God's signs and wonders, (NEED TO KNOW TEXT) physically and spiritually which include all of the gifts as well as the ministering gifts of the Holy Spirit (NEED TO KNOW TEXT) will not cease until Christ's return, "When that which is perfect has come". 1 Corinthians 13:10 and "He will wipe away the tears from their eyes and there will be no more death, not sorrow, nor crying, nor pain. All that has gone forever". Revelation 21:4. ACTS 24- 25-26.
All the Apostles and Disciples of Christ did miracles in Jesus' Name. Both Peter and Paul healed the sick, cast out demons, raised the dead-these miracles still occur today. Both Peter and Paul were imprisoned, and both had divine help for the releasing of their chains in jail. Both were given divine revelation that God's will and intention was to include non-Jewish people into the Kingdom of God.
Paul also was used of God to preach of Christ before royalty and nobles and people in high places of Government because of his imprisonment. Paul was a prisoner in chains bound for Rome when during the voyage, there was bad weather, the ship ran aground on a sand-bar and was broken to pieces. The guards wanted to kill all prisoners but the captain of the guards believed Paul had been given a message from God, told to him by an angel, that all would survive. Later, when on the beach, Paul lit a fire, a poisonous snake came out of the wood and bit Paul but had no ill effect at all. The people of the island were all healed of their sicknesses by the power of The Holy Spirit working through Paul. Later they were able to sail off for Rome on another ship, Paul, still a prisoner. At this time Peter was in Jerusalem with Jesus' half-brother James, both of whom were part of The Christian Church Council in Jerusalem, which was made up of Apostles and Elders. (ACTS 15.) Paul continued to preach and teach in Rome even though he was under house-arrest. ACTS 27-28
55 A.D. Paul wrote many letters to instruct and correct the churches, all inspired by The Holy Spirit to encourage the believers in The Body of Christ before and after his imprisonment for the sake of the Gospel. "Now you have every grace and blessing; every spiritual gift and power for doing His will, are yours during this time of waiting for the return of our Lord Jesus Christ. And He guarantees right up to the end, that you will be counted free from all sin and guilt on that day, when He returns". 1CORINTHIANS 1:7,8,30.
Paul was detain under guard on house arrest in Rome, after his second arrest, as a condemned prisoner, he was confined in the Mamertime Dungeon in chains. He was still able to proclaim the gospel among all classes of society, to those in the Roman Senate to prison guards and other prisoners. Paul was executed after a trial, during the reign of Nero, the Roman Emperor who was a persecutor of Christians. Tradition holds that Paul was beheaded at a spot on the Ostian Way outside the City of Rome in A.D. 68.
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