As we continue our biographical study of the life of Paul the Apostle we now come to the last point in our outline: his legacy. What was the lasting impact of his life? Only God really knows the full answer to that question.
Reflecting on this I came up with at least four areas where his lasting impact is obvious: the church, his mentees, his books and especially the book of Romans.
God chose him to explain how in the church believers from all cultures are brought together into one body. The church already existed when Paul was saved. In fact, he was committed to destroying the church and was on his way to Damascus to wipe it out in that city. After he was saved he was passionate about reaching Jews. In every city he went to the synagogue first to share the good news with Jews and any God fearers who were present. In most places some responded positively to the message.
But when other Jews saw Gentiles responding they resisted and opposed the message, often following this up with persecution. When this happened Paul turned his attention to reaching Gentiles. The challenge then was to encourage Jewish believers to join with the Gentile believers to make up the church of Jesus Christ in one body.
This unique institution, in spite of its many shortcomings and failures over the centuries, is the instrument God chose to represent Himself and His love to the world. The church universal, multifaceted and triumphant is uniquely a significant part of Paul’s legacy.
What is your legacy going to be as a Christian?