paul makes no sense???

by highdose 16 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • highdose

    is it just me, but when i read my bible (nwt) i found whole pages of pauls writing that i didn't understand and couldn't make head nor tail of. I also noticed that the borg tended to only quote certain scriptures that they thought they could make sense of pauls writings, and these were quoted over and over again. but surely the whole bible is supposed to be inspired and benifical ... bla bla bla etc?

    So... what are our thoughts? Was Paul a mad old man? should we pay attention to what he wrote ( the bits we understand that is) and why do these books exist in the bible that are not understandable? I mean i thought the light was supposed to be getting brighter?

    JW apologists feel free to post, would be interesting to see what the party line is on this one, Vs the rest of the world full of free thinkers

  • Leolaia

    Try reading a non-literal translation. When I was a JW I never understood Paul through the pages of the NWT but once I read other more idiomatic translations, the reasoning and rhetorical structure of Paul's writing came into sharp focus. I especially like the Jerusalem Bible because not only is it written in clear English but it organizes the structure of the epistle into sections and sub-sections with headings and so forth. That made it much much easier to see the flow of the argument and see where each point (or digression) is headed.

  • Narkissos

    Well, in that case I would strongly recommend that you pick another Bible; Pauline rhetorics is not always easy, not always convincing from a modern perspective (or even an ancient one sometimes), but it certainly makes sense (whether you agree or not). Only the JW habit of quoting separate verses about unrelated topics rather than reading entire works, added to the NWT rendering -- sometimes fanciful, always painful -- doesn't help.

  • Psychotic Parrot
    Psychotic Parrot

    The bible makes sense most when read under the influence of mescaline

  • greenie

    I would love one of JWNs resident biblical scholars to explain Paul a little more, especially since it seems like soooooooo many of the JW "rules" come from his letter to the Corinthians. How is one supposed to read that chapter? I was reading it the other night and was surprised at how many JW laws were in there. I've heard that it was directed to that specific congregation bc they were particularly unruly. Is that true? Can it be proven?

  • PSacramento

    Sometimes it is best to read a few different translations to get an idea of what Paul ( or any other witer) was trying to convey. has an option that when you get to a verse that is a bit confusing, you can click on it and view a buch of other translations and many times that helps to clear things up.

    Remember, Paul was writing in HIS day for the people of HIS day from HIS point of view.

    Its also important to take what Paul wrote with the understanding of Paul's core beliefs.

  • Chalam

    Hello HD,

    Yes some of Paul's writings are hard to understand, Peter agrees!

    2 Peter 3:15-16 (New International Version)

    15 Bear in mind that our Lord's patience means salvation, just as our dear brother Paul also wrote you with the wisdom that God gave him. 16 He writes the same way in all his letters, speaking in them of these matters. His letters contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other Scriptures, to their own destruction.

    Anyhow, the WT distort scripture to their own destruction (and that of the lives of others).

    I agree with the other posters, get yourself a new bible, choose any here you like the look of A searchable online Bible in over 100 versions ...

    Also, you need a new teacher, the WT teachings are totally confusing

    1 Corinthians 2:14 (New International Version)

    14 The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned.

    John 14:26 (New International Version)

    26 But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.

    All the best,


  • WTWizard

    It makes perfect sense--the Bible lies.

  • sinis

    Paul was a Roman officer... the Bible was a work in progress during the 3rd century. Its ALL BULLSHIT!!!

  • Doug Mason
    Doug Mason


    When you read Paul's writings, remember that he is not writing to us. He was not writing to people 1000 years ago. He was writing to people of a particular culture living in his own time. Do you understand the significance of that? We need to climb into the period and understand its culture, idioms, and so on.

    Further, Paul often did not do the writing. Rather, he might be pacing up and down in his room, which was often a prison cell, calling out his thoughts while his scribe was busily trying to capture his message. Imagine the emotion, the dust and heat. This is so far removed from the etherial atmosphere of a Cathedral or Monastry.

    Do you expect that Paul sat down for a long period where he crafted an analytical, carefully structured, missive? Paul was so imbued by the Jewish Scriptures that they were part of his life and of his language.

    The methodologies Paul used to interpret the Jewish Scriptures, and to reapply them to his faith in the Jewish prophet Jesus Christ is another exercise to ponder.

    There is so much light and shade, color, and emotion. It's a big 3D color production.

    And Paul's writing are not a tool to knock the other guy, simply being used to prove that "I'm right!". Use Paul as an aid in personal growth


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