Summary: Paul and Timothy discussed
1. “When it was time, in the gracious plan of God, to proclaim the Gospel throughout the world, Paul was the special instrument chosen by God to lead the way in world missions…Paul’s missionary work made his very prominent in the Bible. In fact, outside of Jesus Christ, no person is more prominent in the NT than the Apostle Paul. [Butler]
2. It is always profitable and a delight to study one of Paul’s inspired letters.
3. The Introductional Lead.
Colossians 1:1 (NKJV)
1 Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, and Timothy our brother,
I. First, the Testimonial of a man of God. 1:1-2a
A. The Author.
Paul – ðáõëïò a name, Nom, masc.
“At the head of the letter is the name “Paul,” used by the apostle in the Hellenistic-Roman world in place of the Jewish “Saul.” Jews in the Greek speaking areas took names which closely approximated to the sound of their Hebrew and Aramaic names.”
[Word Biblical Commentary]
Saul was his Hebrew name, and Paul was his Roman name, the Latin meaning “small.” This is in line with what we know about him (2 Cor. 10:10).
1. His Race – a full blooded Jew. Ac. 22:3/Phil.3:5
Being from the tribe of Benjamin, the tribe King Saul was from, it is understandable the he would be named Saul. This meant that he was circumcised on the 8th day (Phil.3:5), according to the instructions given to Abraham (Gen. 17:12), at which time he would have been given two names, Saul and Paul.
2. His Region – Tarsus, a city located some 10 miles inland from the Mediterranean Sea in south east central region of the Roman province of Cilicia. The province of Cilicia was located in the northwest end of the Mediterranean Sea (Ac. 21:39).
In the civil wars of Rome the city took Caesar’s side, which resulted in it becoming a “free city” that is, a city which had the privilege of self-government. Favor with Rome resulted in Roman citizenship for those in Tarsus. Thus, Paul could claim Roman citizenship (Ac. 22:25-28).
3. His Raising.
a. His Training – in Jerusalem under Gamaliel (Ac. 22:3)
b. His Trade - that of a tentmaker (Ac.18:3)
Stalker, “It was a rule among the Jews that every boy, whatever might be the profession he was to follow, should learn a trade, as a resource in time of need.
This was a rule with wisdom in it; for it gave employment to the young at an age when too much leisure is dangerous, and acquainted the wealthy and the learned in some degree with the feeling of those who have to earn their bread with the sweat of their brow.”
4. His Religion – he was no atheist; not a superficial religious person but one zealously immersed in Judaism (Gal. 1:14). His father was a Pharisee (Ac. 23:6), of which Paul also became (Phil. 3:5).
5. His Rejection of Christianity.
a. His Consenting – to Stephen’s death (Ac. 7:58)
b. His Condemning – Ac. 8:1-3; 9:1,13-14, 21; 22:4-5, 19-20; 26:10-11/Gal.1:13,23
I Cor. 15:9/I Tim. 1:13).
6. His Regeneration. Ac. 9:3-18
a. The Son of God was manifested to him.
b. The Sun was shinning brightly – it was noon. (Ac.22:6; 26:13) Even the sun shinning in its brilliance was nothing compared to the light of God’s glory!
c. The Sinner was near Damascus. 9:2
d. The Sparing mercy of God – if Paul got what he deserved he would have busted hell wide open!
e. The Speaking of Jesus. 9:4
He Confronted the sinner – “Saul, Saul why are you persecuting me?”
He Comforted the saints – by identifying Himself with the persecuted church.
He brought the sinner under Conviction – 9:4; 22:7; 26:14.
He Converted the sinner from death unto life.
B. The Apostle.
An apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God – the possessive genitive “Jesus Christ” shows who the apostle now belonged to (I Cor. 6:19). The preposition äéá with the genitive “the will” expresses that it was God’s will that Paul be an apostle (Gal. 1:15-16).
He was an apostle – one sent out on a mission by God.
1. Apostles are a Remnant.
a. Quantity – Twelve + 1 Mt. 19:28/Rev.21:14/2 Cor. 11:5)
b. Authority (Mt. 10:1-2)
c. Identity (Mt. 10:3-4)
2. The Requirements to be an apostle. Ac. 1:20-26
a. The Commission – directly from Jesus Himself (Jn.15:16/Gal.1:1)
b. The Resurrection – had to have literally seen Jesus Christ in His glorified body.
3. The apostleship was Reinforced by sign gifts – Ac. 2:43; 4:33; 5:12/2 Cor. 12:12.
4. The Retirement.
a. All apostles have Deceased.
(1) Their ministry and office was NOT Perpetual – this is indicated by the fact that the Epistles lay out qualifications for Bishops and deacons, but none for apostles.