What is context? The Oxford dictionary says: The circumstances that form the setting for an event, statement, or idea, and in terms of which it can be fully understood and assessed. Also: The parts of something written or spoken that immediately precede and follow a word or passage and clarify its meaning.
With this in mind, let’s take a look at Paul the Apostle from the circumstances that form the settings of the events he wrote about. Firstly, who or what was Paul (or Shaul)? Paul has credentials. Philippians 3:4-6 lays them out.
Paul was zealous in all that he did. He was from the tribe of Benjamin, and when describing himself, he said he was a Hebrew of Hebrews; in regard to the Mosaic Law, a Pharisee; as for zeal, persecuting those who believed Yeshua was the Messiah; as for legalistic righteousness, faultless.
Paul was a Jew of the nation of Israel, circumcised the 8th day according to Jewish custom. He remained a Jew until he died. He did not institute a new religion (Christianity), but became one of the leaders of a sect of Judaism known as The Way.
Paul was of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews. The tribe of Judah are the Jews. The tribe of Ephraim are Ephramites, the tribe of Levi are Levites, etc. From the time of Paul to today, the collective tribes of Israel have come to be known as Jews. The Benjamites were a particular favorite of Judah because when the northern tribes were scattered by Assyria, the Benjamites voluntarily chose to return to Judah. Jerusalem is located on the land originally allotted to Benjamin. Paul’s given name was Shaul (Saul), named for the first king of Israel. His entire life exuded Jewishness.
As to the law a Pharisee - The Pharisees were the great teachers of the Torah. Training to become a Pharisee began very early and by twelve years of age, all five books of Torah had to be memorized. . . verbatim. Shaul was the protege of one of the greatest Pharisees, Gamliel. He studied Torah and Oral Law and was zealous for enforcing (with violence, if necessary) the letter and traditions of both. He would have had money, authority, and prestige, all used to the fullest in His Torah terrorist mode.
2 Corinthians 10-13 records Paul's determined defense of his apostleship and authority. After his “conversion,” he used his education, his position, and his earthly connections just as zealously to promote the good news of Yeshua as he did previously to try and discredit Him. Paul’s personality and purpose were not changed, only his focus, and this is true for all of us who receive the blessing of life in Yeshua.
In 2 Peter 3:15-16, Peter accepts Paul and refers to him as "our beloved brother." He states that Paul wrote "according to the wisdom given him." Finally, Peter refers to a collection of Paul's letters and calls them "Scripture." In the early church, the term "Scripture" was generally used to refer to that of the Old Testament, but Peter perceived the writings of Paul to be on a par with "the rest of the Scriptures," indicating that he considered Paul's writings as inspired by YHVH.
We have disregarded Paul’s heritage and the scope of his life by interpreting what we have of his writing from a history of those who came before and had ulterior motives. His letters were intended to deal with specific issues of his day according to principles already established in Torah. To see Paul as anti-Torah is wrong. Everything he did and said continued to uphold Torah (translated as: the Law) because Torah was his life - both before and after he came to know Yeshua haMashiach.