Jesus's Words

The Cult of Paul

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Contrast #01: their citizenship...

Though Paul was a self-proclaimed Roman citizen regularly respected by the authorities,(Acts 16:37, 22:25-28) Jesus is portrayed as coming from the home of a common Jewish laborer2 and as an itinerant preacher often met with scorn and disdain.(Matthew 13:54—58, Mark 6:3, and John 6:42.)

2: Though common Christian tradition cites Jesus as having been a "carpenter", the actual Greek word used in the relevant verses is tekton, Strong's #5045, a word that actually meant "laborer" or "artisan." While some scholars have noted that this would have made Jesus a well-respected craftsman of sorts, the opposite is more than likely to have been the case, with the average peasant artisan residing even below the peasant farmer on the sociological pecking order of the day. Indeed, there was no "middle class" to speak of in more ancient times. Rather, there were those like Paul and his family who had wealth, and there was everyone else who essentially didn't. This would explain the disdain and even disrespect that Jesus obviously receives in the above-cited verses. Indeed, it is intriguing to note that Jesus never once mentions the bustling city of Sepphoris in the Gospels, and this even though he grew up within sight of its walls. He also rarely talks in urban images, even though he was raised near a mid-sized metropolis, and even though his family probably worked regularly therein. As such it seems that Jesus quite obviously knew that cities were the places where opulence gathered, and that cities were the sources of the very same peasant oppressions that his ministry was designed to stifle and quell.

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