I came across this post while surfing looking for something pureland related (thanks google lol!) I just want to add my opinion here. I'm a pureland buddhist, but before I started learning the pureland teachings, I began with Theravada. My journey began in 2008, I practiced meditation read the few Theravada texts available in print and thought I was on the road to nibbana.
However, I realised very early on, that although relatively simple to practice, Theravada was not working for me. Meditation was difficult I could never quieten my mind I felt my practice was robotic and empty without feeling any sense of advancement. I began looking at other schools in buddhism and long story short came to pureland.
Now in short pureland seems the easy way to enlightenment and often criticised by Thervada monks
if not the entire mahayana school because of the sutras and their age etc. However unlike most pureland buddhist's, who simply believe that if they chant Amitabha's name they will be saved and carry on their daily routine then that is a great mistake.
Just as with Theravada buddhism where one uses ones own self effort to cultivate their mind and acquire merit, so to do pureland buddhists. If you don't bother to use your own self effort to practice pureland in as much as recitation of the Buddha's name and reading of the sutra's , keeping the precepts then by simply chanting Amitabha's name will not advance you further in buddhism.
Self effort and a commitment to learn the sutra's (which should not be judged so badly by theravada as they are exceptionally complicated and thought provoking) is part of the way in pureland, we as pureland buddhists acknowldege that we cannot attain this nirvana entirely on our own, we'll give it a good try but Amitabha is there to cultivate the part of us we cannot infuse with the dharma.
Pureland is by no means easy, it's a lot about focusing and quietening the mind through buddha recitation, I was a very immature person in 2008, though I've long way to go, the 2018 version of "me" is somewhat subdued mellow, amicable and I believe pureland has helped me cultivate this.
Regarding sutra origins, if we were all in the same room and I said all of this to you in person and at a later date posted it here, does make my words less valid? no, likewise the sutras put to writing at a later stage having been orally transmitted for centuries are just as valid. We are all buddhists and we should avoid the false superiority argument "mine is better because the writing is older" We share a wonderful teaching and we should cultivate from it together.