For follow-up discussion and general commentary on the topic. Comments are sorted chronologically.
The word "epistle" is the old word for the word "letter". There is an interesting point with regard to the Epistles.in the New Testament. St.Paul is the major contributor among the.writers of the Epistles. He has fourteen Epistles to his credit as against seven in all contributed by the other four writers. But not a single Epistle is referred to in his name while we have Epistles in the names of James, Peter, John and Jude.
The Gospel According to Luke and the Acts of the Apostles are letters of Luke to Theophilus but there appears no concluding words in these two letters.
As each of us are the same, we are also made different. We interprete the authors perception. Two people could be at the same dinner party, asked to write a review, both will have their own writing styles and recollections of the event. I believe the bible has one continuous theme shared with fresh eyes and style. God gave us the Ten Commandments. These were the rules he wished us to abide by. Every choice and decision we are confronted with in life can be guided by these commandments. The bible shares stories written showing consequences and reward of choices and decisions people made. By following the Ten Commandments we are helped to understand Gods wishes as he will judge our obedience. Just my thoughts.
The whole bible is the word of God. It is all to us but not all for us. Ephesians 3:1-5. The dispensation of grace was not known in past ages. The doctrine or truth of grace apart from works was given to Paul. Acts 16:31 Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved and thy house.
Romans 11:6. All grace, no works. If we could be saved by works, then Jesus died in vain. Galatians 2:21.
Salvation by grace excludes the law. Ephesians 2:8-9 For by grace ye are saved, through Faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the GIFT of God, not of works, lest any man should boast.
John 3:16-18. Once we believe on Jesus we can no longer be condemned. Unbelievers are condemned already because they have not believed on the name of the Son of God.
Romans 6:23 For the penalty for sin is death, but the GIFT of God is eternal life, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Jesus paid our sin debt in full so we can never be condemned again.
We can be chastened by the Lord, but never be condemned. John 1:12
Romans 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the POWER of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth, to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.
The gospel. First Corinthians 15:1-4. Once we believe it we are saved forever. Sealed by the Holy Spirit who is our guarantee of eternal life. Ephesians 1:13-14. Ephesians 4:30. And grieve not the Holy Spirit, in whom ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. The rapture of the church.