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The Book of: Galatians

Well I'm glad to see you are still with us. We have just come from our study of Leviticus, Deuteronomy, and Numbers. We witnessed the giving of God's Law to the people of Israel and their inability to live accordingly. The law served as a mirror to show our own shortcomings and inability to measure up to God's standard. We learned the breaking of one small portion of God's law was equal to breaking all of the law. God gave the various sacrifices as a means for the Israelites to look forward to the sacrifice of Christ on the Cross.. If the Israelite responded to the directions for the sacrifice in a positive fashion he fulfilled the requirement of Faith.

So far in our New Testament study we have learned that we are saved by Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and his Word. This requires no work on our part, only an acceptance of Christ and our submission to his Word. In this study of this book we find that Paul is not too happy with some of his Gentile converts who are being influenced by some converted Jews who are teaching at least a partial obedience to the law by observance of the rite of circumcision. He has no complement for this group of believers, but is very stern with them because of the danger they faced.

Paul starts off in verse 1 to establish his authority by direct appointment by Jesus Christ.

(chpt:  1 Vs: 001)  Paul, an apostle, (not of men, neither by man, but by Jesus Christ, and God the Father, who raised him from the dead;) 

In verse 2 we learned that this epistle is addressed to a number of Galatian churches.

(chpt:  1 Vs: 002)  And all the brethren which are with me, unto the churches of Galatia: 

In verse 3 Paul calls them to a state of grace to be followed by peace that is received from God the father, by Jesus Christ as our Lord.

(chpt:  1 Vs: 003)  Grace be to you and peace from God the Father, and from our Lord Jesus Christ, 

Verses 4 and 5 are considered by the old teacher to be eternal verses. If we look at all conditions around us with the evil and sin everywhere we can become very discouraged and feel very hopeless. But verse 4 gives us a promise of our rescue from this environment.

(chpt:  1 Vs: 004)  Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father: 

(chpt:  1 Vs: 005)  To whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen. 

The Galatians are told, starting in verse 6, that they are being taught a perverted gospel and that anyone who teaches any doctrine that deviates from what Paul taught should be considered to be accursed. Paul continues in the rest of the chapter giving the experience that qualifies him to be in authority.

(chpt:  1 Vs: 006)  I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: 

(chpt:  1 Vs: 007)  Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. 

(chpt:  1 Vs: 008)  But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. 

(chpt:  1 Vs: 009)  As we said before, so say I now again, if any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed. 

(chpt:  1 Vs: 010)  For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men? for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ. 

(chpt:  1 Vs: 011)  But I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man. 

(chpt:  1 Vs: 012)  For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ. 

(chpt:  1 Vs: 013)  For ye have heard of my conversation in time past in the Jews' religion, how that beyond measure I persecuted the church of God, and wasted it: 

(chpt:  1 Vs: 014)  And profited in the Jews' religion above many my equals in mine own nation, being more exceedingly zealous of the traditions of my fathers. 

(chpt:  1 Vs: 015)  But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother's womb, and called me by his grace, 

(chpt:  1 Vs: 016)  To reveal his Son in me, that I might preach him among the heathen; immediately I conferred not with flesh and blood: 

(chpt:  1 Vs: 017)  Neither went I up to Jerusalem to them which were apostles before me; but I went into Arabia, and returned again unto Damascus. 

(chpt:  1 Vs: 018)  Then after three years I went up to Jerusalem to see Peter, and abode with him fifteen days. 

(chpt:  1 Vs: 019)  But other of the apostles saw I none, save James the Lord's brother. 

(chpt:  1 Vs: 020)  Now the things which I write unto you, behold, before God, I lie not. 

(chpt:  1 Vs: 021)  Afterwards I came into the regions of Syria and Cilicia; 

(chpt:  1 Vs: 022)  And was unknown by face unto the churches of Judaea which were in Christ: 

(chpt:  1 Vs: 023)  But they had heard only, That he which persecuted us in times past now preacheth the faith which once he destroyed. 

(chpt:  1 Vs: 024)  And they glorified God in me. 

This chapter continues with the theme that was started in the last half of the previous chapter

(chpt:  2 Vs: 001)  Then fourteen years after I went up again to Jerusalem with Barnabas, and took Titus with me also. 

(chpt:  2 Vs: 002)  And I went up by revelation, and communicated unto them that gospel which I preach among the Gentiles, but privately to them which were of reputation, lest by any means I should run, or had run, in vain. 

(chpt:  2 Vs: 003)  But neither Titus, who was with me, being a Greek, was compelled to be circumcised: 

(chpt:  2 Vs: 004)  And that because of false brethren unawares brought in, who came in privily to spy out our liberty which we have in Christ Jesus, that they might bring us into bondage: 

(chpt:  2 Vs: 005)  To whom we gave place by subjection, no, not for an hour; that the truth of the gospel might continue with you. 

(chpt:  2 Vs: 006)  But of these who seemed to be somewhat, (whatsoever they were, it maketh no matter to me: God accepteth no man's person:) for they who seemed to be somewhat in conference added nothing to me: 

(chpt:  2 Vs: 007)  But contrariwise, when they saw that the gospel of the uncircumcision was committed unto me, as the gospel of the circumcision was unto Peter; 

(chpt:  2 Vs: 008)  (For he that wrought effectually in Peter to the apostleship of the circumcision, the same was mighty in me toward the Gentiles:) 

(chpt:  2 Vs: 009)  And when James, Cephas, and John, who seemed to be pillars, perceived the grace that was given unto me, they gave to me and Barnabas the right hands of fellowship; that we should go unto the heathen, and they unto the circumcision. 

(chpt:  2 Vs: 010)  Only they would that we should remember the poor; the same which I also was forward to do. 

(chpt:  2 Vs: 011)  But when Peter was come to Antioch, I withstood him to the face, because he was to be blamed. 

(chpt:  2 Vs: 012)  For before that certain came from James, he did eat with the Gentiles: but when they were come, he withdrew and separated himself, fearing them which were of the circumcision. 

(chpt:  2 Vs: 013)  And the other Jews dissembled likewise with him; insomuch that Barnabas also was carried away with their dissimulation. 

(chpt:  2 Vs: 014)  But when I saw that they walked not uprightly according to the truth of the gospel, I said unto Peter before them all, If thou, being a Jew, livest after the manner of Gentiles, and not as do the Jews, why compellest thou the Gentiles to live as do the Jews? 

Starting in verse 15 Paul again emphasizes the fact that we are not saved by the works of the law, but by the Faith of Jesus Christ. Before he gets to the end of the chapter he makes this statement three times. In other versions of the English Bible this statement may be changed and made to appear that the Faith spoken of is our Faith . The statement is made again in verse 22 of the next chapter. Since this statement is made by Paul four times in this small epistle I believe it means what it says. While Faith is necessary on our part to receive salvation, it is based upon the faith of Christ himself who responded in a positive fashion to the plan of God. He could've backed out anywhere in his earthly life but chose to carry out the plan to the end.

(chpt:  2 Vs: 015)  We who are Jews by nature, and not sinners of the Gentiles, 

(chpt:  2 Vs: 016)  Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified. 

(chpt:  2 Vs: 017)  But if, while we seek to be justified by Christ, we ourselves also are found sinners, is therefore Christ the minister of sin? God forbid. 

(chpt:  2 Vs: 018)  For if I build again the things which I destroyed, I make myself a transgressor. 

(chpt:  2 Vs: 019)  For I through the law am dead to the law, that I might live unto God. 

(chpt:  2 Vs: 020)  I am crucified with Christ: neverthless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. 

(chpt:  2 Vs: 021)  I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain. 

Paul continues in this chapter to define the difference between trying to serve the law and being saved by Faith .

(chpt:  3 Vs: 001)  O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth, crucified among you? 

(chpt:  3 Vs: 002)  This only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith? 

(chpt:  3 Vs: 003)  Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh? 

(chpt:  3 Vs: 004)  Have ye suffered so many things in vain? if it be yet in vain. 

(chpt:  3 Vs: 005)  He therefore that ministereth to you the Spirit, and worketh miracles among you, doeth he it by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith? 


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