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me by his grace to reveal his Son in me, that I might preach him among the heathen, immediately I conferred not with flesh and blood. Neither went I up to Jerusalem, to them which were Apostles before me, but I went into Arabia and returned again to Damascus." Now from this, there is no evidence that he had any further communication concerning the Christian scheme, than he received through his own vision, and the message of Ananias, that Jesus was the Messiah, and that he was to be preached to the Gentiles.
It does not appear, that any more is referred to, in the following allusion to the subject in his Epistle to the Ephesians. “For this cause I, Paul, the prisoner of Jesus Christ for you Gentiles, (if ye have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which is given me to youward,) how that by revelation he made known to me the mystery, as I wrote before in few words, whereby, when ye read, ye may understand my knowledge in the mystery which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men, as it is now revealed unto his holy Apostles and prophets by the Spirit.” The same truth had been shown to Peter by a vision at Joppa, before the conversion of Cornelius, “ that the Gentiles should be fellow heirs and of the same body, and partakers of his promises in Christ by the Gospel. Whereof I was made a minister, according to the gift of the grace of God given unto' me, by the effectual working of his power, unto me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ."
That no other revelation is here referred to than the one at his conversion, would appear from his speech to the Jewish council, delivered when he was apprehended and sent to Rome many years after. The next vision that he there relates himself to have had after his conversion, was after his three years' sojourn in Arabia, and his return to Jerusalem.“ And it came to pass, that when I was come again to Jerusalem, even when I was praying in the temple, I was in a trance, and saw him saying unto me : Make haste and get thee quickly out of Jerusalem, for they will not receive thy testimony concerning me. And I said, Lord, they know that I imprisoned and beat in every synagogue them that believed on thee, and when the blood of thy martyr Stephen was shed, I also was standing by, and kept the raiment of them that slew him. And he said unto me, Depart, for I will send thee far hence unto the Gentiles."
Christ seems often to have appeared to Paul, during his life, for his encouragement and direction ; miraculous intimations seem to have been made to him of the Divine will, and of future events, but we have no instance in which anyonew doctrine was communicated, not contained in the teaching of Jesus.
What then was the Gospel as preached by Paul? The same that was preached by the other Apostles, as contained in the four Evengelists and the Acts. The first and fundamental article which he preached to the heathen, we have in his speech at Athens, and it is the doctrine of one God, the Maker of heaven and earth. “God, that made the world, and all things therein, seeing that he is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands." "He hath appointed a day in which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained, whereof he hath given assurance unto all men in that he hath raised him from the dead." When he preached to the Jews, who were already acquainted with the one God, he preached Jesus as the Messiah, as when he came to Thessalonica, where was a synagogue of the Jews.
“ And Paul, as his manner was, went in unto them, and three sabbath days reasoned with them out of the Scriptures, opening and alleging that the Messiah must needs have suffered, and risen from the dead, and that this Jesus whom I preach unto you is the Messiah."
He preached the doctrine of repentance. This, we have just seen, he preached at Athens, “but now commandeth all men every where to repent.” This however, seems to refer especially to the sin of idolatry, of which he had just been speaking. In that passage which we quoted at the commencement of this lecture, from his speech before Agrippa, le says, “that he showed first to them of Damascus, at Jerusalem, and throughout all the coasts of Judea, and then to the Gentiles, that they should repent and turn to God, and do works meet for repentance." Now how could he preach repentance to the Gentiles? They could repent only of what they had consciously done amiss, that is, what they had done in violation of the law of God written on their hearts. As our Saviour said on a certain occasion; “ And even of yourselves judge ye not what is right?” It was to this law that he appealed, when “he reasoned to Felix of righteousness, temperance, and judgment to come,” and the hardened Roman trembled. He made the basis of his teaching those universal principles of righteousness which God hath written on all hearts.
He preached the resurrection. He was brought before the court of Areopagus at Athens, “ because he preached Jesus and the resurrection." He preached, he tells the Corinthians, the resurrection of all men, as proved by the resurrection of Jesus. In his examination before Felix, he says!“ And I have hope toward God, which they themselves allow, that there shall be a resurrection of the dead, both of the just and the unjust.” He preached a future judgment. “God will judge the world in righteousness.”
Such is the Gospel according to Paul, and a comparison of his public speeches with his Epistles, fully
explains the phenomena of those compositions. Like the rest of the Apostles, he was miraculously made certain of a few great central facts, truths, and principles, which he was commissioned and assisted to preach to the world. In inculcating and illustrating those great facts, truths and principles, he drew upon the resources of his own mind, on his previous stores of Jewish and Gentile learning, and on the thoughts and analogies which suggested themselves to his mind at the moment. Those primitive truths are the Gospel, which is common to all the Apostles. The particular illustrations and arguments are Paul's, ard bear the stamp of his peculiar mind. They add nothing to the certainty of the truths which they illustrate, for they are already certain on higher ground than that of argument, but they commend and render more intelligible those truths to those whom he addresses, and whom he is endeavoring to instruct. The Epistles, moreover, do not contain the general discourses of Paul, but only his particular directions and exhortations to particular communities of his own founding, which were called for by particular occurrences, errors, and sins, which he wished in his absence to correct. Such portions of them are applicable only to those to whom they were addressed, or to others in the same situation. They are, on the whole then, rather commentaries upon the Gospel, than the Gospel itself. These circumstances indicate to us the