According to the gospels, Jesus said not a single stroke could be erased from Law of the Jews (the Torah) until heaven and earth pass away.
Paul, the author of at least 7 letters in the bible (that scholars recognize as legitimately written by him), says the Law is a curse that isnt to be followed anymore, the Law is dead, and the Jewish faith is over.
Who should Christians believe? Neither.
Rather than rewriting this next bit over and over in the thread below (as I have been), I’ll put it here for everyone to see:
Read what Paul says here in Galatians:
“When Cephas [Peter] came to Antioch, I opposed him to his face, because he stood condemned. For before certain men came from James, he used to eat with the Gentiles. But when they arrived, he began to draw back and separate himself from the Gentiles because he was afraid of those who belonged to the circumcision group” (Galatians 2:11-12).
Right there we have Paul saying, in his own words, that James (Jesus’ brother who was left his ministry according to all early church works) and Cephas (Peter) continued to strictly follow Mosaic Law after Jesus was dead, including not even speaking to or going near non-Jews. They believed the Law HAD to be followed, which is the opposite of what Paul taught his followers.
Notice Paul mentions ‘the Circumcision Group.’
A 2nd century historian named Hippolytus wrote about the ‘Circumcision Group.’ He said in 1st century Judea they were a group of Jewish zealots of the Essene school who carried daggars and forced circumcision on anyone talking about the Law. If they didn’t circumcise themselves on the spot, they killed them:
“If they happen to hear any one maintaining a discussion concerning God and His laws, supposing such to be an uncircumcised person, they will closely watch him and when they meet a person of this description in any place alone, they will threaten to slay him if he refuses to undergo the rite of circumcision. Now, if the latter does not wish to comply with this request, an Essene spares not, but even slaughters” (A Refutation of All Heresies 9:21).
Think about this. Paul in Galatians says Jesus’ brother James sent this very group of Jewish zealots known as the Circumcision Group to Antioch, and when they showed up, Peter right away distanced himself from the non-Jews (gentiles) in Antioch because he was scared they would report to James that he wasn’t following Torah Law.
This proves that even though Paul says to not follow the Law in all his epistles, James and Peter, who actually knew Jesus and carried on his ministry, DID follow the Law and demanded everyone else in their ministry did so too. As Hippolytus pointed out, they killed those who didn’t circumcise themselves.
This is why the earliest followers of Jesus out of Judea (Nazarenes/Ebionites) rejected Paul’s teachings and called him a liar and a blasphemer (as the early church writings confirm). These groups stayed Jewish, followed the Law, and didn’t believe Jesus was a god.
To believe Paul, therefore, is to believe the words of someone who never knew Jesus (by his own admission) over Jesus’ own brother and continuing Jewish ministry, who clearly carried on as strict Jews far after Jesus was dead. It’s all there in Galatians in Paul’s own words.