Paul vs. Jesus? Not exactly.

A thread over at the false gospel-preaching Sojourners Blog had multiple accusations against a commenter about whether Jesus and Paul taught the same Gospel, saying things like:

. . . the question of whether the Gospel according to Paul agrees with the Gospel according to Jesus seem largely ignored.

A commenter there referred to someone quoting Paul as a “Paulian” instead of a “Christian” and a commenter here literally said that “Jesus trumps Paul.”  Another one kept saying that “Paul didn’t know about committed same-sex relationships,” as if the Holy Spirit didn’t know either or wasn’t involved in the writings.  And there have been whole TV shows and analyses about the alleged differences between Jesus and Paul.  But is this really the case?

The “Jesus vs. Paul” debate is what is known as a false dichotomy, or a false dilemma.  It implies that you have to choose one side or the other, when there are actually other options.  Please consider this:

1. Jesus is God.  The Bible is the word of God.  Therefore, it is all the word of Jesus.  The original writings turned out just like He wanted them to, including Paul’s letters.

2. The “red letters” (direct quotes of Jesus sometimes printed in red ink) carry no more authority than any of the other verses, let alone the ~3,000 verses saying, “God said,” “The word of the Lord came to me,” etc.

3. Roughly 10% of the “red letters” quoted the “black letters.”  Jesus unapologetically and frequently quoted from the Old Testament, including the most controversial parts such as Adam and Eve, Noah, Jonah and Sodom and Gomorrah.  And the red letters said to believe black letters: Matthew 4:4 But he answered, “It is written, “‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”

4. Peter referred to Paul’s writings as scripture.  This verse not only demonstrates that but exposes why the “Christian” Left dislikes Paul and misinterprets him!

2 Peter 3:16 He writes the same way in all his letters, speaking in them of these matters. His letters contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other Scriptures, to their own destruction.

5. None of the people making this argument seem to question what Luke wrote in his Gospel, so why do they question what Luke documented about Paul in the book of Acts, including his encounters with Jesus and his acceptance by the other Apostles?

6. Unless you think Paul made up his whole story — which would raise a whole new set of issues — then his claims are just as authoritative as the Gospel writers.

For example, Luke was not a direct follower of Jesus but was a careful historian and under the tutelage of Paul.  Mark leveraged Peter for his Gospel.  But Paul heard directly from Jesus.

7. Think about how much you know about the concept of grace and love and where that came from.  Do you really want to toss that out?  Why don’t these “Christian” Leftists object when someone quotes 1 Corinthians 13?

8. Jesus and Paul don’t disagree.  The clear trumps the unclear, but a Gospel writer’s presentation of Jesus’ teachings doesn’t trump Paul’s presentation of Jesus’ teachings.

9.  Much of Paul’s writings pre-date the Gospels.

So I don’t think Paul disagrees with what others documented directly and indirectly about Jesus, and even if they did you wouldn’t necessarily go with the Gospels.

Quoting Paul doesn’t make one a “Paulian” instead of a Christian, it just means you are quoting the word of God.  Don’t let anyone dismiss your claims because you quote Paul.  And be wary of those arguing against Paul — because they are also arguing against the Holy Spirit.

Just quote scripture, in context.  It’s all good.

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17 thoughts on “Paul vs. Jesus? Not exactly.”

  1. One lefty blogger on my list of lefty bloggers likes to opine about how Paul never knew Christ at all, pointing to so much of what Paul doesn’t say in his letters to various churches, as if he never spoke to them previously. That is to say, if I was to tell you face to face about certain truths, would I necessarily need to repeat myself in my letters to you? There is also the issue of what Paul wished most to stress to these peoples, and whether it was required that he constantly go over every detail of the life of Christ in passing along these lessons.

    It is clear that those who make these Jesus versus Paul arguments are simply trying to cast doubts about all of it.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Well written analysis! It clearly shows how the “Christian” Left is as weak at logic and they are at God’s word. My rejoinder to those who sniff “I don’t think much of Paul” is this – Do you believe Jesus is God? Do you believe that the Bible is the inspired word of God? Then they’re ALL red letters”

    Unfortunately many of those that insist on calling themselves The “Christian” Left and Red Letter “Christians” will answer “No” to one or both of those questions.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. The curious thing about being blind and deceived is that you don’t know it. If you knew it then you wouldn’t be deceived would you? As I read through your comments section I thought on what Jesus said, “If the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch.” I admire your zeal, but strongly disagree with you.

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    1. What an amusing comment! Let’s recap:

      Me: Here are 9 specific reasons why the “Paul vs. Jesus” argument fails.
      You: You are blind and deceived! I disagree with you but will offer no reasons why, I’ll just insult you and say that you are blind and deceived! So I win the argument!

      Thanks for the concession speech.

      Like

      1. Sir, thank you for your reply. I would be happy to continue our conversation, but you have proven my main point once again. That is that blind and deceived people are not aware of it. You fall into that category and cannot hear my words. Jesus said this to the Pharisees and it is true of you as well. I hold no animosity towards you. I only pity you.

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      2. You are truly pathetic. Your whole site is about the fallacious Paul vs Jesus nonsense, yet you can’t refute s single point of mine! Once again you have just come with petty insults that anyone could make. Just saying “you are blind” isn’t an argument, it is a concession speech. You are done here for wasting my time twice.

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