The Jews are Godís special people, who come from the family of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Paul belonged to their nation, as did Jesus.
In each town or city that Paul visited, he first declared Godís good news to the Jews. He urged them to trust God to save them by means of Christís death. God wanted to use them to declare his message to people from other nations.
Paul was careful not to offend the Jews by his behaviour. He respected their laws and customs. He tried to live as they did. He only acted differently from them if that was necessary in order to obey Christ.
Paul loved the laws that God had given to the Jews. He tried to show them how, by those laws, God was teaching them to trust Christ.
The Jews had added many rules and traditions to those laws. Paul could not approve of many of those rules and traditions. However, he still respected the people who were sincerely trying to serve God by means of those rules and traditions. He used Godís law to teach them, so that they could serve God in a better manner.
Paul knew that God had made him free. A Christian has Godís Spirit to guide him instead of the law (Galatians 5:18). A personís life pleases God when the Holy Spirit guides that person (Galatians 5:22-23). Such a person is free, but he should not use his freedom to please himself. Like Paul, he should use his freedom to serve other people on behalf of God (Galatians 5:13-14).
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© 2014, Keith Simons.