Many in the religious world, including “Christendom”, label the apostle Paul as a fraud guilty of changing the teachings of Jesus into something that better suited his own beliefs. Hence the phrase, “Pauline theology.”
But is such the case? Not according to the church of the first century.
Fact is, concerning his conversion, Paul acknowledged the amazement of the early church when he said, “And I was unknown by face to the churches of Judea which were in Christ. But they were hearing only, “He who formerly persecuted us now preaches the faith which he once tried to destroy.” And they glorified God in me.” (Galatians 1:22-24 NKJV)
Paul didn’t change the faith taught by Jesus, the faith taught by Jesus changed Paul!
For those who say defending someone by using a quote from that same individual is untrustworthy, all you have to do is read the book of Acts. Or is the entire book of Acts unreliable too?
Labeling someone as fraud because you do not what like what they teach (as is the case with Paul) is no different than what the Jewish leaders did to Jesus when they refused to hear what he said about his relationship with the Father (John 5:16-47).
“For do I now persuade men, or God? Or do I seek to please men? For if I still pleased men, I would not be a bondservant of Christ. But I make known to you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached by me is not according to man. For I neither received it from man, nor was I taught it, but it came through the revelation of Jesus Christ.” (Galatians 1:10-12 NKJV)