Some quick thoughts on the Historical Paul

Did Luke theologize Paul’s blindness? Hang on, let me flesh this out.

First, Galatians 4.13-15. Here, he says the Galatians would have ripped out their eyes for him. Later in the chapter, he signs the letter with a very large signature. He was, perhaps, going blind.

Now, remember the conversion story of Paul in Acts 9. If Acts is written long after Paul’s death, and with the same theological motivation the Evangelists applied to Jesus, then is it possible that Luke takes the known disability of Paul and theologizes it inside the conversion story?

Anyone have any scholarly articles on this?

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3 Replies to “Some quick thoughts on the Historical Paul”

  1. In 2 Maccabees, a persecutor of the Jews is stopped on the road by a vision, blinded, cared for Jews while he recovers, and then converts to the faith of the people he once opposed. It seems pretty clear to me that this was at least in part the literary origin of Paul’s conversion in Acts (of which the writer, who was clearly not trying to convey historical history, gives three contradictory accounts).

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