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Apostle Paul and the Law - Research Paper Example

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Apostle Paul and the Law

What does seem clear is that the traditions of Mosaic Law have been placed outside of Christian life is distinguished from its Judaic heritage by replacing ritualistic worship to that of faith based worship. The place of the Law within Christian life, however, seems to have much less definition to modern readers. The following paper will first discuss the ways in which the life of Christ exemplified an ‘otherness’ that was difficult for new Christians to grasp without the condition of Mosaic Law to create ritual and order. The discussion will then focus on the Epistle to the Galatians and then the Epistle to the Romans in order to define what Paul said in relationship to law for the Church. Finally, an examination of the issue will bring to light how the letters written by Paul can be related to the Gospel revelations of the nature of Christ and his teachings to his followers. Through a look at faith based Salvation and the need for order through Law, the writings of Paul can be used to help uncover Mosaic Law traditions in relationship to the new responsibilities and freedoms of the followers of Christ. Social Differentiation, ‘Otherness’ and the Discussion of Law Defining individuals through social structures that place them into groups has been a long remembered method of defining the population across the world ‘Otherness’ was a problem in that the openness with which Christ taught was incongruent with the way in which people saw one another. Christ gave examples in order to show that he embraced all people for their differences, their faults, and even for their sins. When pressed to define who was a neighbor He made a Samaritan into the hero of the story at a time when Samaritans were looked down upon with contempt. After Jesus had left the world, however, the social differentiations that existed began to emerge as an issue where practices and traditions infiltrated the nature of the message that Paul gave in how to worship. Paul found that he had to dampen the belief in old ways so that the new could thrive in a world in which ritual was a strong part of life. Ritual still defines how people find structure in their life. Through the acts of ritual, order is established. It is far easier to do something than to simply believe in something. Paul saw that the need for ritual was clouding the message that he had brought to followers, the belief that in doing certain acts that followed Mosaic Law salvation could be gained. People rather naturally fall to doing to express what they feel rather than feeling what is needed to create faith. Faith is a difficult concept even in its simplicity. Faith means to believe, but there is a great deal of baggage between knowing and believing which can get in the way. People tend to fall to doing rather than devoting their time to belief as faith has such a deep emotional context that it can be hard to maintain. Culture and the Law tend to be an issue. As people take comfort in the rituals that build the familiar, the show of enacting the Law was outside of the practices of worship that Paul had given to followers. It was not the rituals themselves that were a problem but that he was afraid that they were using ritual in place of belief. In reading the work of Thompson ...Show more

Summary

Paul and the Law: Focus on Galatians and Romans Table of Contents Introduction 3 Social Differentiation, ‘Otherness’ and the Discussion of Law 3 “Works of Law” 6 Galatians 8 Curse 8 Ritual 10 Romans 11 Food 12 Love 13 Some Thoughts on Modern Life and the Example of Christ 14 Conclusion 15 Bibliography 16 Paul and the Law: Focus on Galatians and Romans Introduction Mosaic Law has been an issue of contention between scholars in relationship to its role in Christian life…
Author : garrykreiger
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