The risen, ascended, glorified Lord revealed a vast amount of new information to Paul. Paul referred to these revelations as “secrets.” God had revealed none of these things to the prophets. Jesus had not revealed these truths in His earthly ministry or to the Twelve. From Paul alone do we learn the truths of Christianity: about Christ’s work of our salvation, our sanctification, our rescue from a Christ-rejecting world, and our destiny. Holding to Pauline truths has always been a hard-fought battle. Satan knows when these truths are taught and believed the Church is strong, He therefore constantly fights to keep them hidden and to keep believers occupied with tradition and false-teaching. At the end of his life, Paul wrote Timothy,
“You are aware of the fact that all who are in Asia turned away from me, among whom are Phygelus and Hermogenes” (2 Timothy 1.15).
This was a tragic statement. Paul had expended tremendous effort and had experienced great suffering in Asia. Paul’s declaration provides insight into how theology took the direction it did and what is wrong with the theology of Christendom. Many Church Fathers were fairly orthodox but they also held unscriptural views, especially in their abandonment of Paul. Tragically, little has changed. Most churches spend the greatest portion of their time in the Gospels and Old Testament, rather than in Paul’s epistles. This was contrary to what Paul taught (2 Corinthians 5.16). And when Paul is taught, his doctrines are mixed with Scriptures that pertain to Israel and vice-versa. The result is confusion and contradiction.
Nothing is wrong with the Gospels. Nothing is wrong with the Old Testament. But we find nothing of the Church there. Only through studying Paul and his writings do we learn about God’s work, purpose, and destiny for the body of Christ, the Church. Read more »