Monday, September 2, 2013

Gal 1:13-14

Paul, an emissary of Yahshua, appointed by Yahshua to the Gentiles. 
Here in the western world we tend to read the Scriptures with a western mindset.  We don't completely understand the eastern/Hebraic view of Scriptures.  I was looking for something I remember reading about being a pupil of Gamaliel and could not find it.  If I remember correctly to be one of his students you had to have the entire Tanach, Old Testament,  memorized.  Before I list the two verses I want you to keep in mind the words of Peter concerning Paul and his teachings then I will list two quotes about Paul's education.
2Pe 3:15 and reckon the patience of our Master as deliverance, as also our beloved brother Sha’ul wrote to you, according to the wisdom given to him,
2Pe 3:16 as also in all his letters, speaking in them concerning these matters, in which some are hard to understand,1 which those who are untaught and unstable twist to their own destruction, as they do also the other Scriptures. Footnote: 1See 1 Cor. 11:6.  2Pe 3:17 You, then, beloved ones, being forewarned, watch, lest you also fall from your own steadfastness, being led away with the delusion of the lawless,
 
Peter gives us an adequate warning about the teachings of Paul.  They can be hard to understand as they are very deep especially concerning his teachings on the law or Torah.
 
Gal 1:13 For you have heard of my former way of life in Yehuḏaism, how intensely I persecuted the assembly of Elohim, and ravaged it. Gal 1:14 And I progressed in Yehuḏaism beyond many of my age in my race, being more exceedingly ardent for the traditions of my fathers.
 
 
Act 8:1 And Sha’ul was giving approval to his death. And on that day there was a great persecution against the assembly which was at Yerushalayim, and they were all scattered throughout the countries of Yehuḏah and Shomeron, except the emissaries.
Act 8:2 And dedicated men buried Stephanos, and made great lamentation over him.
Act 8:3 But Sha’ul was ravaging the assembly, entering every house, and dragging off men and women, putting them in prison.
Act 8:4 Then those who had been scattered went everywhere bringing the Good News: the Word!

Dr. Nelson Price "Meet the pedagogy and his star pupil. Gamaliel was one of the most revered teacher of his time. He taught some of the best young scholars of his era. He knew Jewish law and prophecy both of which were enhanced by his wisdom. His teaching was so broad he insisted that his pupils study the Greek poets. That was most unusual for that period.
Saul of Tarsus was one of his students. Gamaliel is the reason that years later when Paul, using his Latin name, went to Athens he could quote the line from one of Greece’s most renowned Third Century BC poets, Aratus of Soli: “In him we live and move and have our being.” Paul applied to line as referring to Jesus.
When it came time for the Sanhedrin to appoint a chief investigator to review reports of a resurrection Saul, the apple of the court’s eye, was chosen. He was given credentials authorizing him to do what was necessary to resolve the controversy.
While walking around enjoying the beauty of Beit Gamaliel  (house of) my wife noticed a plaque and called for our friend, a guide in Israel for over forty years, and me to come see it. It read: “Buried here: Stephen and Nicodemus.” Our well schooled guide did not know of it and was astounded to see it.
Nicodemus was a fellow member of the Sanhedrin with Gamaliel. Stephen was the first Christian martyr. Why would such a prestigious scholar as Gamaliel have these two men of all people buried on his estate?
Following is merely conjecture but sometimes theory proves to be correct. Inductive reasoning led me to the following conclusion.
Could it have been the scholarly student who was appointed by the court came back and shared with his venerable mentor his findings and Gamaliel also became a believer? As such he had his two fellow believers interred on his estate.
At least two other members of the court had become believes, Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimathea. A third believer was the chief investigator, Paul, who voted for Stephen’s death.
More complex conundrums than this have belatedly been proven to be correct."

Grace Notes:  "Paul's Education
"Paul was educated by his mother until the age of five. From age five to ten he studied with his father in the Hebrew scriptures and traditional writings. At the same time, being a Roman citizen and living in a Greek and Roman environment, he received a thorough education in the Greek language, history, and culture.

He was sent to Jerusalem at about the age of ten to attend the rabbinical school of Gamaliel, who was the son of Simeon the son of Hillel. Gamaliel was a most eminent rabbi who was mentioned both in the Talmud and in the New Testament (Acts 5:24-40; 22:3). Gamaliel was called Rabban - one of only seven teachers so called. He was a Pharisee, but he rose above party prejudice. He composed a prayer against the Christian "heretics". He lived and died a Jew.

At this time, Herod was dead, and the Romans had complete control of Judea, hence, there was Roman money, language, and culture. The Jews, therefore, were inclined to cling more closely to their religion as the center of unity. [Refer to the topic: Judean History]

There were two great rabbinical schools, those of Hillel and Schammai. Hillel, the grandfather of Gamaliel, held that tradition was superior to the Law. The school of Schammai despised traditionalists, especially when there teachings clashed with the writings of Moses.

The religious school of Gamaliel (Hillel) was chiefly oral and usually had a prejudice against any book but Scripture. They used a system of Scriptural exegesis, and Josephus in his writings expressed the wish to have such a power of exegesis. When school was in session, learned men met and discussed scriptures, gave various interpretations, suggested illustrations, and quoted precedents. The students were encouraged to question, doubt, even contradict.

When Paul became a Christian, his very thorough education was enormously helpful. He was able to assimilate Christian doctrines rapidly and relate them accurately to the Scripture teaching he had received. From his education, both from Gamaliel and in the desert from the Lord Jesus Christ, Paul developed a divine viewpoint attitude toward human history."

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