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Is it true that Paul did not quote Jesus a single time in the entire New Testament (of which he wrote 50%)?

Did he ever refer to the virgin birth?

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Who makes this claim? Providing a source for it would be helpful. –  Dan Feb 11 '14 at 21:21
It is something I heard in a course I am taking, there is no way for me to provide a source sorry. –  user1361315 Feb 11 '14 at 21:38
then simply say that, "I am taking X course at university Y and professor Z claims A." Not necessary, but it helps us evaluate the claim in the event the claimant has previously published or has a well known bias or interpretive perspective that should be taken into account. –  Dan Feb 11 '14 at 21:41
@Darr But to avoid any of that bias claims, I'd rather someone just tell me the verse etc. I don't want bias to come into the answer. I appreciate your concern though. –  user1361315 Feb 11 '14 at 22:34
If Paul wrote Hebrews, he authored 51.85% of the books but only 29.38% of the verses and 31.60% of the words (English translation) of NT. The numbers are closer to one fourth if he didn't write Hebrews. You were probably just using 50% for emphasis, but that number is artificially high because he wrote a lot of short letters. It doesn't take into account the gospels, Acts, or Revelation. –  mojo Feb 12 '14 at 7:32

4 Answers 4

1 Corinthians 11: 23-26
For I received from the Lord what I also handed on to you, that the Lord Jesus, on the night he was handed over, took bread, and, after he had given thanks, broke it and said, “This is my body that is for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” In the same way also the cup, after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.” For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the death of the Lord until he comes.

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Welcome to C.SE. When you get the chance, please check out our tour and specifically How we are different than other sites. Normally, we want more explanation than just a verse - but this question is the exception. Thank you for reading what the question said! –  Affable Geek Feb 12 '14 at 4:29

I don't know if you intend to place restrictions on what constitutes "quoting Jesus" (compared to the Gospels or Acts), but these instances are at least Paul attributing commands or words to him.

1 Corinthians 7:10-11 (NASB)
But to the married I give instructions, not I, but the Lord, that the wife should not leave her husband (but if she does leave, she must remain unmarried, or else be reconciled to her husband ), and that the husband should not divorce his wife.

2 Corinthians 12:9 (NASB)
And He has said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness." Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me.

Acts describes an instance where Paul, saying his final farewell to the Ephesians, quotes Jesus.

Acts 20:35 (NASB)
"In everything I showed you that by working hard in this manner you must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He Himself said, 'It is more blessed to give than to receive.'"

Paul spent more time (in writing) quoting the Old Testament than he did quoting anyone who was his contemporary.

It might not be entirely reasonable to make an issue of this if we are only considering his writings. There are no historical narratives in the canon that are attributed to Paul, and that's where Jesus is, by far, the most quoted. You can probably find as many quotes or attributions to Jesus in Paul's writings as in any other New Testament epistle in the Canon.

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Does Paul ever actually quote Jesus anywhere?

Acts 26:14-18

And when we were all fallen to the earth, I heard a voice speaking unto me, and saying in the Hebrew tongue, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me? it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks. 15 And I said, Who art thou, Lord? And he said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest. 16 But rise, and stand upon thy feet: for I have appeared unto thee for this purpose, to make thee a minister and a witness both of these things which thou hast seen, and of those things in the which I will appear unto thee; 17 Delivering thee from the people, and from the Gentiles, unto whom now I send thee, 18 To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me.

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Paul is not widely believed to have written Acts. It is thought that this book shares an author with the Gospel of Luke. –  Reluctant_Linux_User Jan 26 at 12:09

Google some portion of "The resurrection myths about Jesus;” a Progressive Christian interpretation, by R. C. Symes." I found it at religioustolerance.org, but it is also elsewhere. In this treatise, Mr(?). Symes concludes:

"The gospels' resurrection stories about Jesus are not factual accounts, but rather made up ones to support the theological agendas of their authors. They were "recorded in order that you may hold the faith that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that through this faith you may possess life by his name" (John 20:31). The gospel accounts are not veridical history. They are myths."

Mr. Symes makes a compelling case, using the resurrection, to demonstrate that the Gospels written after Paul's death are fictions. Obviously Paul couldn't quote fictions that were invented after his death. Notice too, that he never mentions the walking-on-water-incident or any other miracles witnessed by Peter in spite of the fact that Paul met Peter on one or more occasions, as well as James, Jesus' brother. These omissions aren't necessarily proof that the Gospels are a fraud, but c'mon... Paul really had no occasion to reference the story of Lazarus being raised from the dead? the healing of a blind man? turning water to wine? etc.? Paul had no occasion to quote Jesus' parables whilst making converts? Having a few Jesus quotes at the ready certainly would have made his job easier!

So who was Paul and what was his game? I suspect that the Jewish hierarchy was becoming corrupt as the [fictitious?] Gospels indicate. The four books may likely be fiction based on fact. Considering that there were 46 other apocryphal books (or thereabout) which didn't get included in the "official" bible, this idea becomes somewhat easier to accept. Obviously somebody was penning a lot of fluff! At any rate, Paul clearly came to a crossroad with the Jewish hierarchy and, I think, latched on to the Jesus story, whatever it might have been, and lionized him in order to start a new church under his guidance so that he could impose his moral compass on those who would follow.

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The truthfulness of miracles is offtopic for this question. –  curiousdannii Jan 25 at 4:54
This doesn't answer the question. It starts from the premise that miracles are false, and therefore Paul couldn't quote from a story that hadn't been invented yet. From that, it goes on to suggest a conspiracy theory that resulted in the Gospels. Sounds like a logically strained argument. –  Affable Geek Jan 26 at 2:30

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