Since the rise of modern biblical scholarship there has not been unanimity as to how to characterize Paul. He has been praised for having delivered Christianity from Judaism. Lately it has been argued that he remained so thoroughly a Jew that he was not a Christian at all. Others think he became a Christian because he had become a totally frustrated Pharisee by his failure to observe the law of Moses. Some consider him to have been a male chauvinist with few redeeming qualities. Others see in him a messianist with masochistic tendencies. Some think he was a conceited authoritarian who had no patience with the views of others. For a time it was popular to see him as a mystic who wished to lose himself by being in Christ. It has been said that, as one concerned with the life of the Spirit, he saw reason as the enemy of faith and required his converts to sacrifice the intellect on the altar of submission to authority. All these are, at least in part, reactions against the prevailing picture of him as the one who laid the foundation for the doctrines of righteousness by faith and the God of grace on which the Protestant Reformation was built. - Dr. Herold Weiss, Introduction to Meditations on the Letters of Paul
With this beginning, the reader is invited into a Bible study with Dr. Weiss that will not be just an exegetical exercise but will, more importantly, be a personal journey into the Messiah's gospel that Paul so fervently shared throughout the known world of his time and continues to share in our day. Be forewarned that you may find yourself spending more time than you counted on as you truly meditate on the words and the spirit of Paul's letters.