Most books about Paul the apostle are long and very detailed, and for many a potential reader a daunting prospect. A Short Book about Paul is deliberately brief, but its brevity is not at the cost of accuracy.
We trace the main contours of Paul’s life, which turn on the hinge of the singular event outside Damascus in c. AD 34. From that time the leading persecutor of the disciples became the dedicated preacher of the message about Jesus.
This short book shares with many the opinion that Paul remains the most influential voice from Greco-Roman antiquity apart, that is, from the Lord whose servant he was. At the same time, many critics have found fault with him, especially from the time of the Enlightenment.
Paul’s achievements were considerable. Between AD 47-56 he established a network of congregations in five Roman provinces–Syria-Cilicia, Galatia, Macedonia, Achaia, and Asia. His thirteen surviving letters are witnesses to his dedicated pastoral care of these tiny, far-flung gatherings. Not to be missed was his remarkable skill in recruiting a small army of loyal coworkers like Timothy, Luke, and Titus.
The result of Paul’s decade-long journeys in the provinces of Anatolia and Greece was the planting of the seeds of Christianity that would develop into the official religion of the eastern Roman Empire, based in Constantinople.