Before and After

Before he was saved, Paul was a Pharisee (Php 3:5), and like any Pharisee he would’ve prayed the prayer seen on the left (source: Encyclopedia Talmudit, Vol.4, Jerusalem 1956, p.371). Religious pride feeds itself by drawing lines between us and them. It says, “Thank you God that I am not like other men” (Lk 18:11). But grace tears down dividing walls (Eph 2:14).

Paul was so radically changed after he encountered Grace on the road to Damascus, that religious distinctions no longer mattered. It was his revelation of Jesus, who loves all the children of the world, that prompted Paul to write the words you see on the right (Gal 3:28). Whether you are circumcised or uncircumcised, short or tall, left or right, rich or poor – the only thing that matters is that you are in Christ, who is your life (Gal 5:6, Col 3:4).

2 Comments on Before and After

  1. I love that you used “Radically changed” as a description of Paul. One of the things that I so often tell people is that Christians are radicals, because if you are conforming to society, then you are not conforming to Christ’s image. Paul conformed to His image and was seen as a radical or revolutionary in His way of thinking and acting. He was sent to trial for this reason. Shouldn’t we all be willing to go to trial for our belief in Christ?

  2. I think we misunderstand the comparison a bit. Paul is saying not that the destinctions are bad, but rather that each is beautiful. I trying combining all this for a little while only to discover that it felt very uncomfortable. Another way, by the way, to say this, is that there is neither first nor second in Christ Jesus. In a sense some are very blessed on many ways, while for others, the blessings are subtle, awaiting the glorious kingdom to come.. Thanks again Paul 🙂

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