Saturday, February 22, 2020

Did The Apostle Paul Exist?

        The available patristic testimony is unanimous on the authorship of the Pauline corpus. Even liberal scholars believe that Paul wrote at least a few of the New Testament books attributed to him. The fact that there is any discussion regarding Paul as a historical figure presupposes his existence.

        It is because of Paul that the gospel was spread to the Greeks and the Romans. Early church tradition was unanimous that he had founded churches in cities such as Corinth and Ephesus. Paul was martyred around AD 65 under the reign of Nero. Men such as Clement (Philippians 4:3), Linus (2 Timothy 4:21), and Peter (2 Peter 3:15-16) would have known him.

        We have no argument from the first century disputing Paul's existence. The church could not have reasonably fabricated such a character out of thin air. He was known and written about by the Christians of the first and early second centuries.


  1. Just as wacky is the suggestion that Paul isn't speaking of the same Christ, or that his understanding of Christ is not informed by Christ Himself one way or another. They look at his letters and don't see the same lessons imparted by Christ. To one such person, I suggested that we don't know the extent of his preaching to any of the churches to whom he wrote, and that all the person would demand of Paul likely was taught in person, making the repetition of Christ's teachings unnecessary in his letters.

    In any case, it seems Paul takes a lot of heat.

  2. Secular, atheist, historian Will Durant, known for his scholarly 11-volume "The Story of Civilization" assumed Paul was who the Bible says he was.