The Apostle Paul is the most notable Christian missionary and perhaps the most influential New Testament author. The greatest theologians in the church’s history—Augustine, Calvin, Luther, Karl Barth, and others—have repeatedly turned to Paul, and the central doctrines of the church hinge on the theology found in Paul’s writings. Yet in recent decades, disputes over the historicity of Paul’s letters and the emergence of the New Perspective have led scholars to reevaluate central Pauline texts, leading to controversy, dispute, and a fractured understanding of Paul’s intent.
In recent years much has been written on spiritual direction. However, confusion and at times outright contradiction exists between the aims and methodologies of various models of Christian spiritual direction. In order to develop solid criteria for evaluating and critiquing these models it is necessary to root the practice of spiritual direction in the biblical record. The intention of this study is to provide such biblical moorings by examining the Apostle Paul as a case study in his function as a spiritual director—with respect to his aims and praxis of spirituality forming the members of the congregations he founded.
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