Why does Paul say the following when Acts 10 shows Peter bringing the gospel to the Gentiles?

... the gospel for the uncircumcised had been committed to me, as the gospel for the circumcised was to Peter (for He who worked effectively in Peter for the apostleship to the circumcised also worked effectively in me toward the Gentiles)... (Galatians 2:7-8, NKJV).


Peter was present when the gospel was first introduce to the Gentiles — Cornelius being the first. Peter was the first (or was present) for the introduction of the gospel to all major groups (Jews, Samaritans, Gentiles).

That does not means that that was Peter's primary mission field. Paul's primary mission field was initially to Jews living outside of Israel, but eventually changed to be primarily Gentiles (Acts 18). Peter's primary mission field remained to the Jews in Jerusalem.

"Bringing the gospel to the Gentiles" is not a one-time event, but a career. Keep in mind that Acts covers a rather large block of time from just before the Ascension (c. 33 AD) to just before Paul's execution (67 AD).

  • Can you cite historical sources (ideally the text itself) to verify your claims?
    – Dan
    Dec 2 '13 at 19:51
  • Is the argument that he had to be present for the opening of the kingdom to each group because he had the keys? I think Tertullian makes an argument like that if I remember correctly. Aug 3 '14 at 6:42
  • @david interesting thought. Something like that seems to be happening in Acts 8:14-17 Aug 3 '14 at 12:54

Peter is the God ordained Apostle to the Gentiles

ACTS 15: 6 The apostles and the elders met together to consider this matter. 7 After there had been much debate, Peter stood up and said to them, “My brothers,[b] you know that in the early days God made a choice among you, that I should be the one through whom the Gentiles would hear the message of the good news and become believers. 8 And God, who knows the human heart, testified to them by giving them the Holy Spirit, just as he did to us; 9 and in cleansing their hearts by faith he has made no distinction between them and us. 10 Now therefore why are you putting God to the test by placing on the neck of the disciples a yoke that neither our ancestors nor we have been able to bear? 11 On the contrary, we believe that we will be saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus, just as they will.”

So whose vision do you believe?

  • Peter's vision of a sheet being let down from heaven 3 times (3 is a divine confirmation) containing unclean animals for him to kill and eat, representative of the Gentiles whom God calls clean and fit to receive salvation by Jesus. or..
  • Paul's vision of Jesus as a bright light and voice, blinding him, on the road to Damascus. Remember, Satan masquerades himself as an angel of light. Jesus always appeared in the flesh after his resurrection.

Revelation chapter 21 states there are 12 Apostles of the Lamb. We know that Matthias replaced Judas as the 12th. Matthias met the criteria the 11 Apostles decided upon for apostleship, that of having been with Jesus from the beginning to the end of his earthly ministry. Paul had no such distinction.

  • This answer will undoubtedly be downvoted into oblivion. However, I think it is somewhat accurate as to the view of Acts, which clearly for all its Paul worship doesn't view him as greater or even equal to the 12. Acts never calls Paul an apostle except in Acts 14:14 where its says "the apostles Barnabas and Paul tore their robes," putting Paul on the same level as Barnabas (a virtual nobody) and even listing Barnabas ahead of him. Aug 3 '14 at 6:36
  • very interesting ...are you sure that Acts never calls Paul an apostle? Dec 31 '14 at 18:04