Was the Apostle Paul a false prophet?
There is a belief spreading mostly within the Hebrew roots movement that Paul was a false prophet. The motivating force behind this claim is they believe Christians should submit to the letter of the Old Testament Law, but the stumbling block to overcome is the fact Paul clearly disagrees with them. Therefore, instead of following truth wherever it may lead, they are led to claim the vision Paul saw on the road to Damascus was actually Satanic in origin, instead of being the light of Jesus. However, could Christianity stand if Paul was an instrument of Satan? Could the bible survive the blow of Paul being a false prophet? I will examine these issues by proposing the full impact and disregard this self serving theology imposes on scripture.
The first issue would lead to the credibility of Luke. Doctor Luke wrote the Book of Acts, however, if Paul’s road to Damascus experience was Satanic, the book of Luke would fall apart. If Luke’s creditably is lost then we would have to call into question the whole Gospel of Luke?
Luke’s gospel has many events not found in any of the other biblical gospels; including the most detailed events which surround Jesus’ birth. Below are a couple of important events that we would have to call into question:
1. Jesus’ genealogy starting all the way back to Adam
2. The miraculous of the birth of John the Baptist
John’s birth was the fulfillment of Old Testament prophecy which if it didn’t happen, this would call into question the unity of scripture:
3 This is he who was spoken of through the prophet Isaiah:
“A voice of one calling in the wilderness,
‘Prepare the way for the Lord,
make straight paths for him.’”
11 Then an angel of the appeared to him, standing at the right side of the altar of incense. 12 When Zechariah saw him, he was startled and was gripped with fear. 13 But the angel said to him: “Do not be afraid, Zechariah; your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you are to call him John. 14 He will be a joy and delight to you, and many will rejoice because of his birth, 15 for he will be great in the sight of the Lord. He is never to take wine or other fermented drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit even before he is born.
The angel Gabriel appearing to Zechariah, John’s father, as the angel struck him mute until he named his son John.
The visit of the angel Gabriel to Mary
What about Mary’s credibility as she gave her Testimony to Luke of what she was told from the Angel Gabriel?
26 In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, 27 to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. 28 The angel went to her and said, “Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.”
29 Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. 30 But the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary; you have found favor with God. 31 You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you are to call him Jesus. 32 He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, 33 and he will reign over Jacob’s descendants forever; his kingdom will never end.”
When Mary visited her cousin Elizabeth and her unborn child
John the Baptist was filled with the spirit of the Lord before he was born. Should we then question Elizabeth’s testimony as she was filled with the Holy Spirit when John leaped in her womb?
39 At that time Mary got ready and hurried to a town in the hill country of Judea, 40 where she entered Zechariah’s home and greeted Elizabeth. 41 When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. 42 In a loud voice she exclaimed: “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the child you will bear! 43 But why am I so favored, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? 44 As soon as the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy. 45 Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfill his promises to her!”
The Angel’s appearing to the Shepherds
This is the only gospel that tells us that there was no room for Mary and Joseph at the inn. Would there ever be truth in setting up our manager scenes again at Christmas time?
Could there ever be truth in singing Christmas songs like;
While shepherds watch their flocks by night
Oh Holy Night
Hark the herald angels sing
The first Noel
Or even silent night?
8 And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 9 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”
13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,
14 “Glory to God in the highest heaven,
and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”
The prophecies of Simeon and Anna when Mary and Joseph brought Jesus to the temple as an infant
Was Simeon really told by the Holy Spirit that he would not die until he saw the Messiah? Was he really foretelling what would be in Jesus’ future, including that a sword will pierce Mary’s heart with grief? These are some of the questions we would have to ask about Luke’s gospel.
25 Now there was a man in Jerusalem called Simeon, who was righteous and devout. He was waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was on him. 26 It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he had seen the Lord’s Messiah. 27 Moved by the Spirit, he went into the temple courts. When the parents brought in the child Jesus to do for him what the custom of the Law required, 28 Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying:
29 “Sovereign Lord, as you have promised,
you may now dismiss[d] your servant in peace.
30 For my eyes have seen your salvation,
31 which you have prepared in the sight of all nations:
32 a light for revelation to the Gentiles,
and the glory of your people Israel.”
33 The child’s father and mother marveled at what was said about him. 34 Then Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, his mother: “This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against, 35 so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too.”
36 There was also a prophet, Anna, the daughter of Penuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was very old; she had lived with her husband seven years after her marriage, 37 and then was a widow until she was eighty-four.[e] She never left the temple but worshiped night and day, fasting and praying. 38 Coming up to them at that very moment, she gave thanks to God and spoke about the child to all who were looking forward to the redemption of Jerusalem.
Jesus being lost when He was brought to Jerusalem, when He was twelve years old and was found teaching the religious teachers in the temple
Was Jesus really lost and then found teaching and amazing the teachers in the temple? Did His amazing knowledge help prove that He was God as He wasn’t taught by the Jewish religious teachers?
41 Every year Jesus’ parents went to Jerusalem for the Festival of the Passover. 42 When he was twelve years old, they went up to the festival, according to the custom. 43 After the festival was over, while his parents were returning home, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem, but they were unaware of it. 44 Thinking he was in their company, they traveled on for a day. Then they began looking for him among their relatives and friends. 45 When they did not find him, they went back to Jerusalem to look for him. 46 After three days they found him in the temple courts, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. 47 Everyone who heard him was amazed at his understanding and his answers. 48 When his parents saw him, they were astonished. His mother said to him, “Son, why have you treated us like this? Your father and I have been anxiously searching for you.”
49 “Why were you searching for me?” he asked. “Didn’t you know I had to be in my Father’s house?”.
There are also 11 parables of Jesus which are NOT in any of the other gospels here is a list below.
∙ Two Debtors (Luke 7:41-43)
∙ Good Samaritan (Luke 10:30-37)
∙ Importunate Friend (Luke 11:5-8)
∙ Rich Fool (Luke 12:16-21)
∙ Barren Fig-tree (Luke 13:6-9)
∙ Lost Piece of Silver (Luke 15:8-10)
∙ Τhe prodigal Son (Luke 15:11-32)
∙ Unrighteous Manager (Luke 16:1-9)
∙ Rich Man and Lazarus (Luke 16:19-31)
∙ Unjust Judge (Luke 18:1-8)
∙ Pharisee and the Tax Collector (Luke 18:9-14)
Is it possible that Jesus did not teach these parables? Such well-known ones, like the Good Samaritan, the prodigal son and the rich man and Lazarus?
All of these events are only recorded in the book of Luke, however The Bible tells us that every word is inspired by God and all books of the bible are a unity containing the full message of God.
2 Timothy 3:16
All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness,
There is important events in the Book of Acts that would also have to call into question under the Jewish roots and other similar Pauline heresies.
Did the Holy Spirit really come on the day of Pentecost? This led to Peter’s first sermon, when over three thousand Jews were converted on that same day.
Did a great persecution start on the day of Stephen’s death as recorded in Acts Chapter 8?
We would also have to call into question Ananias’s credibility who said he was sent to Paul by Jesus through a vision. Would we now have to consider that this vision too was of Satan?
There are many more events in the book of Acts which we couldn’t verify if Paul was a false prophet and Luke was mistaken.
People who claim the vision Paul saw was Satanic, also claim that Paul contradicted himself in addition to some of the apostles teachings, These people are using the Book of Acts to discredit Paul but the book of Acts actually supports Paul. Doctor Luke stated that it was Jesus in the vision and that Paul was God’s chosen Apostle to spread the gospel to the gentiles.
3 As he neared Damascus on his journey, suddenly a light from heaven flashed around him. 4 He fell to the ground and heard a voice say to him, “Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?”
5 “Who are you, Lord?” Saul asked.
“I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting,” he replied. 6 “Now get up and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do.”
15 But the Lord said to Ananias, “Go! This man is my chosen instrument to proclaim my name to the Gentiles and their kings and to the people of Israel.
The books of Acts is very same source they use to discredit Paul, however, it is the very same source which supports Paul. Therefore, there argument is confused and divided?
When Jesus cast out a demon, He stated that a kingdom divided against its self cannot stand.
24 But when the Pharisees heard this, they said, “It is only by Beelzebul, the prince of demons that this fellow drives out demons.”
25 Jesus knew their thoughts and said to them, “Every kingdom divided against itself will be ruined, and every city or household divided against itself will not stand. 26 If Satan drives out Satan, he is divided against himself. How then can his kingdom stand?
Paul also cast out a demon.
18 She kept this up for many days. Finally Paul became so annoyed that he turned around and said to the spirit, “In the name of Jesus Christ I command you to come out of her!” At that moment the spirit left her.
This confirms that the power came from God not Satan. Paul always glorified God through his works and if Satan did deceive Paul then Satan would be divided against himself. The fruits of Paul’s ministry reveal the truth, that it was Jesus in Paul’s vision and not Satan.
Paul had the support of the apostles as they dwelt together and started different churches with the same teachings and message. If the churches Paul started had the same teachings as the other churches, started by the apostle, then how did Satan deceive Paul? If it was Satan in Paul’s vision, then Satan’s deception failed as the message Paul received actually strengthened the church and helped the church grow. Christian lives were also saved when Paul received his vision on the way to Damascus, as he was going there to arrest Christians.
2 Peter 3:15
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.
Peter calls Paul his brother and not one of the apostles ever rebuked Paul’s for his teachings.
Jesus also commanded the church to take the gospel to the whole world
18 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
Paul’s stated many times that the gospel had reached the whole known world during his life time showing that the fruits of his ministry revealed the truth of who Paul was.
The truth of who was in Paul’s vision is revealed within these verses below, when Peter and some of the apostles were arrested and brought before the Sanhedrin.
34 But a Pharisee named Gamaliel, a teacher of the law, who was honored by all the people, stood up in the Sanhedrin and ordered that the men be put outside for a little while. 35 Then he addressed the Sanhedrin: “Men of Israel, consider carefully what you intend to do to these men. 36 Some time ago Theudas appeared, claiming to be somebody, and about four hundred men rallied to him. He was killed, all his followers were dispersed, and it all came to nothing. 37 After him, Judas the Galilean appeared in the days of the census and led a band of people in revolt. He too was killed, and all his followers were scattered. 38 Therefore, in the present case I advise you: Leave these men alone! Let them go! For if their purpose or activity is of human origin, it will fail. 39 But if it is from God, you will not be able to stop these men; you will only find yourselves fighting against God.”
Paul’s teachings are still being taught in the church today almost two thousand years later, Paul gave God all of the glory thus proving that this vision was from God, not Satan.
Some arguments against Paul are that he contradicts what Jesus said in some of His teachings. Paul was at times misunderstood and was taken out of context. One argument is that the angles said in the book of Acts that Jesus would come back the same way He left, physically up to the clouds. Jesus will come back the same way He left but that doesn’t rule out Jesus appearing in visions like He did to Ananias or to John in the book of Revelation.
In Acts 9:7 Luke repeats the accounts of Paul’s testimony.
7 The men traveling with Saul stood there speechless; they heard the sound but did not see anyone.
In Acts 22:9 Paul says that his companions saw the light
9 My companions saw the light, but they did not understand the voice of him who was speaking to me.
This is not a contradiction but just different accounts of what his companions saw, they did see the light but they didn’t actually see Jesus.
Paul talks to different audiences, at different times, this is not a contraction or against what the apostles taught, it is just a partial account. Just like after the meeting of the Jewish council when the council wrote a letter to Gentile Believers recorded in acts 15:24-29.
29 You are to abstain from food sacrificed to idols, from blood, from the meat of strangled animals and from sexual immorality. You will do well to avoid these things.
10 All they asked was that we should continue to remember the poor, the very thing I had been eager to do all along.
In Acts 15 the letter was given to the believers in Antioch, Syria and Cilicia but in Galatians Paul is talking to the believers in Galatia. Paul is talking to two different audiences; one is a quote from the letter, the other is a message that came from the meeting. Both are meant to encourage them in their walk of faith.
Some believe that Paul stated that the law wasn’t important or should be abolished and that Paul introduced his own law. This is not true. When the Jewish Leaders brought Paul up before Felix, Festus and King Agrippa, no one could prove that Paul did anything wrong regarding the law.
14 However, I admit that I worship the God of our ancestors as a follower of the Way, which they call a sect. I believe everything that is in accordance with the Law and that is written in the Prophets.
Paul believed in everything in accordance with the law. Paul knew that Jesus didn’t abolish the law but that Jesus fulfilled the law. Paul understood that the Jews before the cross were saved by grace through faith in a future Messiah and that the law never saved anyone as they were not saved by works but by grace through faith. Paul also understood that the law was bondage to the unbelieving Jews. This is why all Israel can’t be saved, only true Israel, the church, can all be saved.
Some heretics claim Paul is admitted to being a liar.
7 For if the truth of God has increased through my lie to His glory, why am I also still judged as a sinner?
Paul is not admitting that he is a liar he is paraphrasing what people were saying about him. Let’s also read the verses before and after this verse.
5 But if our unrighteousness demonstrates the righteousness of God, what shall we say? Is God unjust who inflicts wrath? (I speak as a man.) 6 Certainly not! For then how will God judge the world?
7 For if the truth of God has increased through my lie to His glory, why am I also still judged as a sinner? 8 And why not say, “Let us do evil that good may come”?—as we are slanderously reported and as some affirm that we say. Their condemnation is just.
Paul states in verse 7 that he was speaking as a man, not as a teacher of God’s word to prove a point that lying is wrong. Paul also states that people who lie bring condemnation upon themselves, he wasn’t justifying lying to glorify God even more. As for Paul admitting he was a liar, he was simply paraphrasing what was being misunderstood regarding these verses.
Jesus stated that the gates of hell would not prevail over the church, obviously, under the Jewish roots paradigm the gates of hell did prevail over the church for over 1900 years. This would make Jesus out to be a false prophet…
18 And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.
Jesus and the apostles laid the foundations of the Church before the Bible was written, collected or canonized. Therefore, the church was not founded out of the New Testament cannon, rather, the New Testament was founded in the life of the church. To claim the church was deceived for 2000 years is to question the ability of the Apostles to pass down information to the church and also questions the guidance of the Holt Spirit. Even a person with the most basic understanding, or no understanding for that matter can confidently rebuke this false teaching because it was never taught by the historic church
I hope that this write-up helps anyone struggling with modern heretical movements tainting the internet with such fallacies. Paul was the chosen messenger of God who helped spread the gospel to the gentiles. Paul’s actions and teachings are unified with the rest of the bibles teachings and that the fruits of Paul’s ministry have helped the church grow and are still being taught 2000 years later.