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Myths of Jesus vrs Paul

RGacky3

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Commonly people think of Jesus being the free wheeling hippie figure concerned with being nice and egalitarianism and going against authority and law and the such, being about love and brotherhood and so on whereas Paul was more rigid and concerned with authority and making the "church" and moving away from a more lovey dovey christianity. So people talk about Jesus' christianity vrs Pauline, the former being supposedly more egalitarian and based on ethics the latter being more clerical and based on rules and the hereafter.

Problem is this has nothing to do with history.

Jesus was a Jew who thought that Jews and ONLY Jews were Gods chosen people, his message was only for the Jews, Paul was a universalist, who thought all men were equal before God.

Paul spoke a whole lot more on personality traits and kindness than Jesus did, (at least from what he have in writing), and emphasised love over all.

Jesus kept the law and didn't want to get rid of the law, Paul was against the law and thought it should be abolished for christians. Infact the big dispute between James (brother of Jesus) and Paul was over Jewish legalism.

Jesus was born into a poor family, Paul was born into the professional class and CHOSE poverty (he went from being an ancient version of a lawer to a tent maker).

Jesus was never blatently political against Rome, he was focused on opposing the Jewish high priesthood and aristocracy. Paul talked about the powers and governments as being enemies, (people always bring up his pragmatic letter to the Romans and ignore the condemnations of worlly powers other places).

Paul consistantly focused on redistribution of wealth and caring for the poor (as did Jesus of coarse), but in pauls case it was in the context of an actual institution, and just like Jesus condemned persuit of wealth.

Paul, even though you can find some "sexist" parts of his letters (some of which some scholars think are later additions), he was very egalitarian, he supported female prophets and leaders, and had the famous "there is neither male nor female, jew nor greek" and so on.

Paul was not the leader of the church, infact he was very often in conflict with the leadership (Peter, James, John and others from the 12).

Jesus was apocolyptic, talked about Gods judgement against the wicked, Paul generally focused on the positive hope that the church had.

Paul was arrested by the authorities all the time.

(If you'd like scriptural backing I'll provide it for you).

My point is among many so called "liberal christians" who like the idea of Jesus as a sort of proto-anti-establishment figure, but then look at Paul as someone who ruined it have that concept based on popular imagination and not actual scripture or history. Paul was NOT a strict legalist, was not a judgmental guy going around trying to be the boss, Jesus wasn't just a lovey dovey ethicist while paul was an authoritarian doom and gloom preacher.

Nor did their theologies really conflict, Jesus was the jewish massiah for the jewish people ... Paul was the apostle to the nations bringing the Christian message to the universal stage. Jesus dealt with a theological framework, Paul dealt with institutional practice.
 

Captain Adverse

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Commonly people think of Jesus being the free wheeling hippie figure concerned with being nice and egalitarianism and going against authority and law and the such, being about love and brotherhood and so on whereas Paul was more rigid and concerned with authority and making the "church" and moving away from a more lovey dovey christianity. So people talk about Jesus' christianity vrs Pauline, the former being supposedly more egalitarian and based on ethics the latter being more clerical and based on rules and the hereafter.

Problem is this has nothing to do with history.

Jesus was a Jew who thought that Jews and ONLY Jews were Gods chosen people, his message was only for the Jews, Paul was a universalist, who thought all men were equal before God.

Paul spoke a whole lot more on personality traits and kindness than Jesus did, (at least from what he have in writing), and emphasised love over all.

Jesus kept the law and didn't want to get rid of the law, Paul was against the law and thought it should be abolished for christians. Infact the big dispute between James (brother of Jesus) and Paul was over Jewish legalism.

Jesus was born into a poor family, Paul was born into the professional class and CHOSE poverty (he went from being an ancient version of a lawer to a tent maker).

Jesus was never blatently political against Rome, he was focused on opposing the Jewish high priesthood and aristocracy. Paul talked about the powers and governments as being enemies, (people always bring up his pragmatic letter to the Romans and ignore the condemnations of worlly powers other places).

Paul consistantly focused on redistribution of wealth and caring for the poor (as did Jesus of coarse), but in pauls case it was in the context of an actual institution, and just like Jesus condemned persuit of wealth.

Paul, even though you can find some "sexist" parts of his letters (some of which some scholars think are later additions), he was very egalitarian, he supported female prophets and leaders, and had the famous "there is neither male nor female, jew nor greek" and so on.

Paul was not the leader of the church, infact he was very often in conflict with the leadership (Peter, James, John and others from the 12).

Jesus was apocolyptic, talked about Gods judgement against the wicked, Paul generally focused on the positive hope that the church had.

Paul was arrested by the authorities all the time.

(If you'd like scriptural backing I'll provide it for you).

My point is among many so called "liberal christians" who like the idea of Jesus as a sort of proto-anti-establishment figure, but then look at Paul as someone who ruined it have that concept based on popular imagination and not actual scripture or history. Paul was NOT a strict legalist, was not a judgmental guy going around trying to be the boss, Jesus wasn't just a lovey dovey ethicist while paul was an authoritarian doom and gloom preacher.

Nor did their theologies really conflict, Jesus was the jewish massiah for the jewish people ... Paul was the apostle to the nations bringing the Christian message to the universal stage. Jesus dealt with a theological framework, Paul dealt with institutional practice.

If one is a "Christian" then one believes Jesus is both the Son of God, and GOD himself in human form. No problem with that dichotomy because GOD can do anything.

Paul is a fellow human being and cannot be compared to either GOD or his Son. To a "Christian" your whole thesis is completely irrelevant.

The only value I ascribe to it is that it reinforces my positions regarding the importance of following the words spoken by Jesus as provided by the four books of the apostles who witnessed them; and the fact that the works of Paul of Tarsus merit no more consideration than the words of any other human being.
 

RGacky3

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If one is a "Christian" then one believes Jesus is both the Son of God, and GOD himself in human form. No problem with that dichotomy because GOD can do anything.

Paul is a fellow human being and cannot be compared to either GOD or his Son. To a "Christian" your whole thesis is completely irrelevant.

The only value I ascribe to it is that it reinforces my positions regarding the importance of following the words spoken by Jesus as provided by the four books of the apostles who witnessed them; and the fact that the works of Paul of Tarsus merit no more consideration than the words of any other human being.

I'm talking about the historical Jesus, i.e. Jesus the person and his theology vrs Paul the person vrs his theology.

Obviously if you think Jesus is God incarnate than you can't compare them ontologically or anything like that. I'm talking about the historical Jesus and the historical paul. I'm not talking about how a christian should view those individuals or whatever. I'm talking history.
 

Captain Adverse

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I'm talking about the historical Jesus, i.e. Jesus the person and his theology vrs Paul the person vrs his theology.

Obviously if you think Jesus is God incarnate than you can't compare them ontologically or anything like that. I'm talking about the historical Jesus and the historical paul. I'm not talking about how a christian should view those individuals or whatever. I'm talking history.

Really? Exactly what "historical sources" are you using which provide your information about the "historical" Jesus? Please cite them so I can "compare notes."

My understanding is that while most historians agree that a Jesus of Nazareth existed, there is almost no evidence of what he was like outside of the four books written by the apostles. That historians simply attribute Jewish characteristics to him (as you do) by assuming he was simply just another typical Judean of that era. However, it is all speculation. "Typical Jews" don't found new religions. ;)
 
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RGacky3

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Really? Exactly what "historical sources" are you using which provide your information about the "historical" Jesus? Please cite them so I can "compare notes."

The New Testament.
 

Captain Adverse

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The New Testament.

Exactly. You are using "Christian" texts to diminish the Son of God into a mere "Jewish man." That's like making Krishna, an incarnation of Vishnu, a mere "Indian."
 

RGacky3

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Exactly. You are using "Christian" texts to diminish the Son of God into a mere "Jewish man." That's like making Krishna, an incarnation of Vishnu, a mere "Indian."

I'm not talking about the divinity of christ or anyhting like that .... I'm not dimishing him iether, I'm nto dealing with the quesion ... I'm discussing him AS HE WAS AS A HUMAN BEING. If you think it's wrong to discuss Jesus the 1st century Jewish carpenter turned preacher from Galilee without discussing him as divine then don't join the discussion ....
 

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I'm not talking about the divinity of christ or anyhting like that .... I'm not dimishing him iether, I'm nto dealing with the quesion ... I'm discussing him AS HE WAS AS A HUMAN BEING. If you think it's wrong to discuss Jesus the 1st century Jewish carpenter turned preacher from Galilee without discussing him as divine then don't join the discussion ....

We don't much know what he was like as a human being. We get a couple of stories prior to his 30th birthday...basically the tale of his birth, and a few glimpses of him as a boy. Then suddenly he is in his 30's and we are talking about his progression to godhood. During this period he does not seem to be speaking to just Jews, but to anyone who will heed him. Humans don't walk on water, feed multitudes with a couple of fish, raise the dead, heal the blind, cast out demons...etc.

The idea is that he was always GOD, but portrayed the human Son of GOD in order to experience the life of a man. God has no limitations, therefore as GOD he can do this.
 

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Jesus didn't embrace redistribution of wealth in the same sense that Obama and the liberals promote it. In Biblical Christianity, giving is voluntary (although 10% is a commonly ascribed figure to give and help the poor). The liberals want 30, 40, or 50% or more confiscated by the government. And in the Bible, nowhere does Jesus say giving has to first be filtered through a corrupt and inefficient government.

In fact, Jesus would probably condemn today's liberal redistribution of wealth scheme. And the reason is that it violates the Tenth Commandment. It covets a neighbor's goods and money, rather than people earning it themselves. It's basically greed for other people's money.
 

RGacky3

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We don't much know what he was like as a human being. We get a couple of stories prior to his 30th birthday...basically the tale of his birth, and a few glimpses of him as a boy. Then suddenly he is in his 30's and we are talking about his progression to godhood. During this period he does not seem to be speaking to just Jews, but to anyone who will heed him. Humans don't walk on water, feed multitudes with a couple of fish, raise the dead, heal the blind, cast out demons...etc.

The idea is that he was always GOD, but portrayed the human Son of GOD in order to experience the life of a man. God has no limitations, therefore as GOD he can do this.

There are plenty of Historical Jesus scholars who go through the NT and happened to find A LOT of evidence to reconstruct the human Jesus ... But if you really believe we can't know what he was like as a human individual, then leave the discussion.
 

RGacky3

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Jesus didn't embrace redistribution of wealth in the same sense that Obama and the liberals promote it. In Biblical Christianity, giving is voluntary (although 10% is a commonly ascribed figure to give and help the poor). The liberals want 30, 40, or 50% or more confiscated by the government. And in the Bible, nowhere does Jesus say giving has to first be filtered through a corrupt and inefficient government.

In fact, Jesus would probably condemn today's liberal redistribution of wealth scheme. And the reason is that it violates the Tenth Commandment. It covets a neighbor's goods and money, rather than people earning it themselves. It's basically greed for other people's money.

Stick to the actual issues. Jesus was a Jew, and Jewish law was extremely redistributive and communal.

If you want to discuss bibilcal christianity and social justice I have thread up here
http://www.debatepolitics.com/religious-discussions/156925-social-justice.html
 

Captain Adverse

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There are plenty of Historical Jesus scholars who go through the NT and happened to find A LOT of evidence to reconstruct the human Jesus ... But if you really believe we can't know what he was like as a human individual, then leave the discussion.

When you become the owner of this site, then you can decide how it works and who can participate. Until then, my comments are as valid in this thread as your's are and I will continue to participate as long as I feel the desire to. What you do in response is entirely up to you.
 

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Commonly people think of Jesus being the free wheeling hippie figure concerned with being nice and egalitarianism and going against authority and law and the such, being about love and brotherhood and so on whereas Paul was more rigid and concerned with authority and making the "church" and moving away from a more lovey dovey christianity. So people talk about Jesus' christianity vrs Pauline, the former being supposedly more egalitarian and based on ethics the latter being more clerical and based on rules and the hereafter.

Problem is this has nothing to do with history.

Jesus was a Jew who thought that Jews and ONLY Jews were Gods chosen people, his message was only for the Jews, Paul was a universalist, who thought all men were equal before God.

Paul spoke a whole lot more on personality traits and kindness than Jesus did, (at least from what he have in writing), and emphasised love over all.

Jesus kept the law and didn't want to get rid of the law, Paul was against the law and thought it should be abolished for christians. Infact the big dispute between James (brother of Jesus) and Paul was over Jewish legalism.

Jesus was born into a poor family, Paul was born into the professional class and CHOSE poverty (he went from being an ancient version of a lawer to a tent maker).

Jesus was never blatently political against Rome, he was focused on opposing the Jewish high priesthood and aristocracy. Paul talked about the powers and governments as being enemies, (people always bring up his pragmatic letter to the Romans and ignore the condemnations of worlly powers other places).

Paul consistantly focused on redistribution of wealth and caring for the poor (as did Jesus of coarse), but in pauls case it was in the context of an actual institution, and just like Jesus condemned persuit of wealth.

Paul, even though you can find some "sexist" parts of his letters (some of which some scholars think are later additions), he was very egalitarian, he supported female prophets and leaders, and had the famous "there is neither male nor female, jew nor greek" and so on.

Paul was not the leader of the church, infact he was very often in conflict with the leadership (Peter, James, John and others from the 12).

Jesus was apocolyptic, talked about Gods judgement against the wicked, Paul generally focused on the positive hope that the church had.

Paul was arrested by the authorities all the time.

(If you'd like scriptural backing I'll provide it for you).

My point is among many so called "liberal christians" who like the idea of Jesus as a sort of proto-anti-establishment figure, but then look at Paul as someone who ruined it have that concept based on popular imagination and not actual scripture or history. Paul was NOT a strict legalist, was not a judgmental guy going around trying to be the boss, Jesus wasn't just a lovey dovey ethicist while paul was an authoritarian doom and gloom preacher.

Nor did their theologies really conflict, Jesus was the jewish massiah for the jewish people ... Paul was the apostle to the nations bringing the Christian message to the universal stage. Jesus dealt with a theological framework, Paul dealt with institutional practice.

2 Peter 3
[15] And account that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation; even as our beloved brother Paul also according to the wisdom given unto him hath written unto you;
[16] As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction.
[17] Ye therefore, beloved, seeing ye know these things before, beware lest ye also, being led away with the error of the wicked, fall from your own stedfastness.
[18] But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen.

Not sure what you mean. Most people when they make Biblical claims, include scripture.
 

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Paul, as a Roman citizen, had to accept that people could become 'gods', politicians like Julius Caesar, for instance. The effect of this on the transmission of Jewish monotheism to the gentiles is, I'd have thought, pretty obvious. Jesus and his followers were primitive socialists, Paul a reformed Pharisee with a mission to convert gentiles. That is a sort of hunch, though, obviously, since Paul's letters are the first scriptures we have, but the Trinity is an invention of genius for cross-cultural development, fair play!
 

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Not sure what you mean. Most people when they make Biblical claims, include scripture.

Galatians 2
"7 On the contrary, when they saw that I had been entrusted with the gospel for the uncircumcised, just as Peter had been entrusted with the gospel for the circumcised 8 (for he who worked through Peter making him an apostle to the circumcised also worked through me in sending me to the Gentiles), 9 and when James and Cephas and John, who were acknowledged pillars, recognized the grace that had been given to me, they gave to Barnabas and me the right hand of fellowship, agreeing that we should go to the Gentiles and they to the circumcised. 10 They asked only one thing, that we remember the poor, which was actually what I was eager to do."

Paul got his commision from the apostles, the 3.

11 But when Cephas came to Antioch, I opposed him to his face, because he stood self-condemned; 12 for until certain people came from James, he used to eat with the Gentiles. But after they came, he drew back and kept himself separate for fear of the circumcision faction. 13 And the other Jews joined him in this hypocrisy, so that even Barnabas was led astray by their hypocrisy. 14 But when I saw that they were not acting consistently with the truth of the gospel, I said to Cephas before them all, “If you, though a Jew, live like a Gentile and not like a Jew, how can you compel the Gentiles to live like Jews?”[c]

Peter and James vrs Paul

Also Compare the Epistle of James and salvation through works with Epistles of Paul and salvation through faith.

Also look at the different issues regarding the law and circumsicion in Acts 15, James and Paul were in conflict until they got to a compromise.
 

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I have heard variations of this in the past--that Jesus and Paul taught different messages, etc. and the truth is, yes of course they taught different messages! Jesus had His ministry and Paul's had his ministry. The two ministries, while different, do not conflict.

And because all of the Scriptures are inspired, we do not give any greater weight to the teachings of Chirst than we do to anyone else since the authors of the Old & New Testaments were speaking for God and Jesus was God there is no conflict.
 

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Paul, as a Roman citizen, had to accept that people could become 'gods', politicians like Julius Caesar, for instance. The effect of this on the transmission of Jewish monotheism to the gentiles is, I'd have thought, pretty obvious. Jesus and his followers were primitive socialists, Paul a reformed Pharisee with a mission to convert gentiles. That is a sort of hunch, though, obviously, since Paul's letters are the first scriptures we have, but the Trinity is an invention of genius for cross-cultural development, fair play!

That's total nonsense .... Paul was a Roman citizen but he was througholy Jewish ands Jews were excused from worshiping the emperor ... He was a Roman citizen legally, but culturally 100% Jewish, he was a Pharasaic laweer.

Paul didn't invent the trinity, it didn't come from Paul at all, nor did Paul make christianity palatable for the Roman Empire, he refused idolatry, infact got arrested for inciting a mob when he preached against idols, his making Christ "lord" and so on other titles that were given to the emperor were subversive.

Jesus didn't practice primitive communism, he preached a social gospel for the poor but did have any institutions, his disciples did post easter... and Paul fully supported that, collecting funds for the effort.

Paul being a Roman citizen didn't influence his theology at all really, he was a pharasee first and no Jew would EVER accept that a person could become a God like Ceasar, Roman citizen or not, and neither did Paul.
 

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That's total nonsense .... Paul was a Roman citizen but he was througholy Jewish ands Jews were excused from worshiping the emperor ... He was a Roman citizen legally, but culturally 100% Jewish, he was a Pharasaic laweer.

Paul didn't invent the trinity, it didn't come from Paul at all, nor did Paul make christianity palatable for the Roman Empire, he refused idolatry, infact got arrested for inciting a mob when he preached against idols, his making Christ "lord" and so on other titles that were given to the emperor were subversive.

Jesus didn't practice primitive communism, he preached a social gospel for the poor but did have any institutions, his disciples did post easter... and Paul fully supported that, collecting funds for the effort.

Paul being a Roman citizen didn't influence his theology at all really, he was a pharasee first and no Jew would EVER accept that a person could become a God like Ceasar, Roman citizen or not, and neither did Paul.
Under what Roman law was he excused from this normal citizen's duty, please? And were you around to see what was happening before the Scriptures were written? Why did the Early Church have all things in common if they weren't socialists? Gestures are not arguments, you know. Think of what the Popes made of Christianity, or the American Mammon-worshippers called 'fundamentalists' before you lay down the law in this wild way.
 

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Paul was one of the twelve apostles of the Church of Jesus Christ. They had real authority from heaven. they did not choose on their own to pursue this calling, God chose them, and they are guided by the Holy Ghost and visitation of angels. So both Christ and Paul did not do their will but God's will. Just because Jesus was commanded not to teach the gentiles in person while he was on earth doesn't mean it was meant for all time or he hated gentiles, it just was not the gentiles time yet.
 

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Paul was one of the twelve apostles of the Church of Jesus Christ. They had real authority from heaven. they did not choose on their own to pursue this calling, God chose them, and they are guided by the Holy Ghost and visitation of angels. So both Christ and Paul did not do their will but God's will. Just because Jesus was commanded not to teach the gentiles in person while he was on earth doesn't mean it was meant for all time or he hated gentiles, it just was not the gentiles time yet.

Paul was not a "true Apostle," one of the original Twelve. He claims he encoutered Jesus as a vision while on the road to Damascus years after the crucifixion. We've heard this claim from many people since that time. All we do know is that he was a Jew who became a believer and began to preach conversion to Romans and other non-Jews through his status as a Roman citizen.
 

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Paul was not a "true Apostle," one of the original Twelve. He claims he encoutered Jesus as a vision while on the road to Damascus years after the crucifixion. We've heard this claim from many people since that time. All we do know is that he became a believer and began to preach conversion to Romans and other non-Jews through his status as a Roman citizen.

We'll have to disagree.
 

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We'll have to disagree.

Perhaps. But there is one thing that you must acknowledge: Paul of Tarsus was a MAN; not the Son of GOD (or GOD). The four true apostles who witnessed the words of Jesus provided those direct words in scripture. Paul of Tarsus writes his own interpretations of doctrine in his letters to various church groups.

One cannot compare Paul to Jesus as "man to man" like the OP is trying to do.
 

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Perhaps. But there is one thing that you must acknowledge: Paul of Tarsus was a MAN; not the Son of GOD (or GOD). The four true apostles who witnessed the words of Jesus provided those direct words in scripture. Paul of Tarsus writes his own interpretations of doctrine in his letters to various church groups.

One cannot compare Paul to Jesus as "man to man" like the OP is trying to do.

But we have to keep in mind that Paul's letters are the first things we have. The destruction of the Church in Jerusalem as a result of the anti-Roman rising clearly skewed things his way, and it's very hard, now, to know what other viewpoints were around.
 

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But we have to keep in mind that Paul's letters are the first things we have. The destruction of the Church in Jerusalem as a result of the anti-Roman rising clearly skewed things his way, and it's very hard, now, to know what other viewpoints were around.

The writings of the three apostles, Mathew, Mark, and Luke, take precedence. They witnessed in fact. if you search the catholic apocrypha there is also a Gospel attributed to Mary Magdalene that was rejected by the Church primarily because it was written by a woman and they did not accept her witness as fact.

The Book of John is actually an anonymous compilation of stories beginning with John the Baptist and his encounter with Jesus.

Paul is simply a man who helped build the church.
 

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Jesus kept the law and didn't want to get rid of the law, Paul was against the law and thought it should be abolished for christians. Infact the big dispute between James (brother of Jesus) and Paul was over Jewish legalism.

Not really. The sermon on the mount specifically claims that the law is not enough. Intent, inner change is what counts. Hence the structure of the sermons "You have been told [by the Law] that X; but I say Y." It is a complete rejection of the Law as a means of transformation.

And don't cite Mat 5:18, since his whole point there is, if you want to be stuck with the condemnation of the law, rather than the free grace he offered, then you'll be stuck with it.

At other points Jesus explicitly says the law is bad. Hence Mat 19:8 -- where Jesus says that the law of divorce was to accommodate the "hardness of their hearts".

Finally, when asked about what laws to keep, Jesus says that loving your neighbor and God is the real law, which doesn't even appear in the 10 commandments, but is buried in Leviticus. It would have struck a Jew at the time as odd.

Finally, I can't think of one major theological doctrine articulated by Nicene that appears in Jesus' sayings. Same is true of Paul of course. The preoccupation with trinitarianism, original sin, etc. are all later developments that neither Paul nor Jesus cared about. They cared about a new creation, the transformation of the self, through the gospel message and God's love.
 
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