Propositional Analysis applied to Paul’s Speech
The Opening Words:
The Opening Words:
and esteemed fathers.
Listen to me as I offer my defence.
I am a Jew,
born in Tarsus,
a city in Cilicia,
I was brought up
educated here in Jerusalem
As his student,
I was carefully trained
in our Jewish laws
I became very zealous
to honour God
in everything I did
just like all of you today.
And I persecuted
the followers of the Way,
hounding some to death,
arresting both men and women
and throwing them in prison.
The high priest and the whole council of elders can testify that this is so.
For I received letters
to our Jewish brothers
to bring the followers of the Way
to be punished.
Paul’s Testimony (Acts 22:6-21)
As I was on the road
approaching Damascus about noon,
a very bright light from heaven suddenly shone down around me.
I fell to the ground
and heard a voice saying to me,
‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?’
‘Who are you, lord?’
And the voice replied,
‘I am Jesus the Nazarene,
the one you are persecuting.’
The people with me saw the light
but didn’t understand the voice speaking to me.
‘What should I do, Lord?’
And the Lord told me,
‘Get up and go into Damascus,
and there you will be told everything you are to do.’
I was blinded by the intense light
and had to be led by the hand to Damascus by my companions.
A man named Ananias lived there.
He was a godly man,
deeply devoted to the law,
and well regarded by all the Jews of Damascus.
He came and stood beside me
‘Brother Saul, regain your sight.’
And that very moment I could see him
then he told me, ‘
The God of our ancestors has chosen you
to know his will
and to see the Righteous One
and hear him speak.
For you are to be his witness,
telling everyone what you have seen and heard.
What are you waiting for?
Get up and be baptized.
Have your sins washed away
by calling on the name of the Lord.’
After I returned to Jerusalem,
I was praying in the Temple
and fell into a trance.
I saw a vision of Jesus saying to me,
‘Hurry! Leave Jerusalem,
for the people here won’t accept your testimony about me.’
“‘But Lord, they certainly know
that in every synagogue
and beat those who believed in you.
And I was in complete agreement
when your witness Stephen was killed.
I stood by and kept the coats they took off
when they stoned him.’
But the Lord said to me,
‘Go, for I will send you far away to the Gentiles!’
I am sure you will see what I have done to lay this speech out in propositions. I have on occasions rearranged the verbal dialogue stems – He said, I argued, etc so they align. All other related elements align directly below their parallel segments. All subordinate or explanatory segments align as well. It makes it easier for you to follow which segments relate to which and how they are related. Now you need to track Paul’s speech to see how the key parts of his defence have been structured.
Following this initial speech we have the words:
The crowd listened until Paul said that word. Then they all began to shout, “Away with such a fellow! He isn’t fit to live!”
They yelled, threw off their coats, and tossed handfuls of dust into the air.
The commander brought Paul inside and ordered him lashed with whips to make him confess his crime. He wanted to find out why the crowd had become so furious. (Acts 22:22-24)
Now I trust it is very clear to you what is going on, just from the way I have laid out Paul’s speech. It is clearer to me than ever it was. But then I have been doing this kind of work for a long time. This might be your first encounter with Propositional Analysis. I trust you find it helpful. I think I don’t need to say anything more now. I will leave you to digest what I have given you. I think it will help you immensely to see what is going on.
Talk to me. Tell me if this was helpful to you and why.
Tell me if it wasn’t helpful and why.
Even doing that will help you further. Believe me, I know. I have been in your position before when I was first taught Propositional Analysis before under my first teacher, Prof Basil Brown, and then under Bruce Hooley during my Wycliffe training.
The man who denies God is like the fish who denies the existence of water. Ian
Eta Carinae is a star in the Milky Way that is 5 million times brighter than our sun. The immensity of the universe is not for us, it’s to show the magnitude and glory of God.
The untrackable unfathomable vastness of the Universe is a parable of the vasteness of the riches God and the depth of His word. John Piper
The ocean is so deep in places that no person, however capable a swimmer, could survive its extremities. But when the ocean touches the land, the water is so shallow and the waves lapping the beach are so gentle that even a toddler can safely play there. Like the ocean, the Bible’s depths can never be fathomed. Even after a lifetime of study, the most brilliant theologians admit they’ve only begun to plumb its depths. The Bible can be intimidating and yet approachable at the same time. Deron Spoo
Now with Propositional Analysis I trust it is a little easier for you to track. Ian