Not of human origin

“Now I want you to know, brothers and sisters, that the gospel I preached is not of human origin.”

Galatians 1.11

What Paul preached came from God. It alone is true. Therefore, it cannot be modified in any way. Whoever changes it stands under God’s condemnation, because he gave it to save.

Is what the Bible says the only truth about God and plan of redemption? Yes! No other book, no other message, carries the divine stamp. Philosophies and theologies are useless to save.

#votd #Galatians #gospel

Each carry his own load: Galatians 6.5

“For each one will carry his own load.”

Galatians 6.5

The apostle Paul is all about helping others, even correcting an erring brother so that he not be lost. Jesus said we must love each other. But some things others cannot do for us. There is individual responsibility.

It doesn’t matter what others do, or fail to do, in their responsibility toward God, toward the church, or toward the family. I must do my part. I am responsible and will answer to God for my words and actions. The failures of others do not release me from my load.

#votd #Galatians #responsibility

Why were the Galatians turning away from the gospel?

A valid question worth considering is asked in the “Discussion Questions” section on p. 64 of the Gospel Advocate’s Foundations Adult Bible study book for Galatians (Summer 2018, Lesson 5, The Works of Law or of Faith).

The reason the question is valid is because the answers still apply to individuals today. It asks, “Why do you think the Galatians had turned (or were contemplating turning) from the gospel message Paul preached to them?”

The answers are bit subjective for obvious reasons but the question is rooted in reality. Why do people, who have obeyed the truth, turn from the trustworthy to the untrustworthy? Let me share a few answers.

  1. The Galatians were “somewhat new” to the religion of Christianity. Perhaps this different version of the gospel scratched their itching ears in some way (2 Timothy 4:3; Galatians 4:10). Familiarity can be good thing, but it can also become a stumbling block. Such has happened in the past, and continues to happen with the “installation” of “Christian holy days” meant to replace pagan holiday days. Being new to Christianity introduces great emotions into our lives, but these emotions can also become a weakness if we’re not careful.
  2. The presence of very persuasive false teachers could have also played a large factor in the Galatian’s situation. We know the false teachers had the desire (Galatians 4:17) and, according to the results they were getting, it seems as if they had the talent. Such is also the case today with charismatic and linguistically skilled people who present doctrines that blatantly reject the first principles of the gospel.
  3. The absence of sound teachers seems to be a possible contributing factor to the aforementioned work of false teachers. Dangers abound and wolves feast in the absence of a shepherd’s guidance. Consider the fact, unlike in other epistles, that Paul did not mention any laborers by name in the Galatian letter and that may be a clue concerning the leadership situation the churches of Galatia had on their hands. Sound teaching is not optional! (1 Timothy 1:10; 2 Timothy 1:13, 2:2; Titus 1:7-9, 2:1) Its absence will become a detriment that can and will lead to deception in any congregation.

#galatians, #gospel-advocate, #questions-and-answers

The revelation of Jesus Christ in Galatians

The book of Revelation isn’t the only “revelation of Jesus Christ” in the New Testament. There are a few actually. One in particular is found in Galatians 3:23:

But before faith came, we were kept under guard by the law, kept for the faith which would afterward be revealed.” (NKJV)

In the middle of a conversation about justification from sin, the burden of the justifying one’s self with the law of Moses, a promise made to Abraham and the role of Moses’ law in relation to the faith which saves our soul, Paul makes an interesting statement about how God would ultimately justify his people. He says it was God’s plan to reveal the faith after the Law fulfilled its purpose.

The word “reveal” comes from the Greek word “apokalupto” meaning, “to uncover, to lay open what has been veiled, to disclose; to make known.” So, in other words, Galatians 3:23 is the revelation of Jesus Christ in Galatians (note that the Greek for the book of Revelation comes from “apokalupsis” which for all intents and purposes has the same root meaning).

The “revelation” in Galatians is important because the Gospel of Jesus Christ teaches (in more ways than one) that something is “removed” or “unveiled” when an individual stops depending upon their own work through the Law of Moses and starts depending upon the work of Jesus through faith (2 Corinthians 3:12-18). That thing (the veil or covering) removed through the glory (or light) of the gospel, in one specific manner, is our ignorance concerning God’s intent and endpoint concerning the role of Moses’ Law – that being that the way Abraham was saved was meant to last in order to justify us all (Galatians 3:22), not the Law, which was added 430 years after the promise concerning Abraham, faith, justification and Jesus was made (Galatians 3:13-18).

This is why Abraham rejoiced when he saw the “revelation of Jesus Christ” in Galatians which had been revealed to him so long ago (John 8:56); and it’s why we should rejoice about it today!

Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me His prisoner, but share with me in the sufferings for the gospel according to the power of God, who has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was given to us in Christ Jesus before time began, but has now been revealed by the appearing of our Savior Jesus Christ, who has abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel,” (2 Timothy 1:8-10 NKJV)

#galatians, #greek-grammar, #justification-by-faith, #justification-by-the-law-of-moses

Short introduction to Galatians

One concern about early Christianity was how (if at all) it differed from the Mosaic economy. Early saints conflicted regularly over which (if any) applications of the Law remained relevant to Christians.

Paul argues in Galatians that the “works of the law” were inferior to the “faith of Christ,” as the former led to the latter (3:19-25). This proved the superiority of Christ’s system, and demonstrated that all believers – regardless of whether they had previously submitted to ordinances of the Mosaic Law — are equal heirs of God’s promise to Abraham (Gal. 3:26-29; cf. Gen. 12:1-3, et. al.).

A key word of the book is “liberty.” “Liberty” must be defined by God. It is not freedom from restraint, but freedom from the broken moral and spiritual systems found in the world. Liberty in Christ involves humble, sacrificial service (5:14-18; 6:1-4), moral excellence (5:19-26), and a promise of everlasting harvest (6:7-10)

—Rick Kelley, Prestonsburg KY church bulletin

#galatians, #liberty, #nt-introduction

10th Minnesota Bible Lecture

Please post on bulletin boards you pass or share with friends and invite them to attend. The study of Galatians will be important to emphasize God’s plan of salvation through Jesus Christ. Important topics of Abraham and faith, fruit of the spirit and the Christian’s walk, baptism and much more will be discussed. God bless you!

—Dan Mayfield, Owatonna MN

10th Minnesota Bible Lecture April 27, 2013 (Lord willing!)


#galatians, #lectureships

More comfortable with being uncomfortable

Productive Living on Davidco

People are more comfortable being uncomfortable than being comfortable, if they have been uncomfortable for an extended period of time. It’s simply an ingrained pattern, and familiarity is more comfortable than novelty. Most people have for so long experienced the gnawing sense of anxiety about all the un-captured and un-clarified “work” of their life, that’s what they’re used to. Then no matter how clean and in control they get at some point, they will soon let themselves slide, let things mount up again, unprocessed, sufficiently to get them back to the level of stress they are accustomed to.

This point seems to offer a spiritual application as well. People are often more comfortable with their old sinful life than with the life of Christ, than with the “feeling of freedom,” as Allen mentioned. We love our burdens and weights too much to lay them down. We want to keep our old familiar prejudices and hates and habits. Along with the context of Galatians, might not this truth give extra meaning to chap. 5, verse 1,

“For freedom Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not be subject again to the yoke of slavery.”

Christ has given us freedom. That freedom was meant to be exercised and enjoyed, not stifled by the inner or religious need to prove one’s own worth to God. This hopeless effort produces only frustration, but some, who already know only this, prefer it to the freedom of having sins totally forgiven and living in the free obedience to the will of God.

Enhanced by Zemanta

#galatians, #gtd, #habits, #legalism, #spiritual-freedom

Visit Forthright Press stand at FHU Lectures

Barbara Ann will be manning the Forthright Press booth at the Freed-Hardeman University Annual Bible Lectureship. Go by and say hi to her. And buy a book.

• Got any insight into what Paul meant when he said that it pleased God to reveal in him the Son (Ga 1:16)? I’ve written an article on it, but still would appreciate any insights you might have. Not an easy phrase, that.

• As I mentioned yesterday, we got company coming, and they’re about to drive up. I’m grateful that we have people like this couple who have the heart of mission to reach places that have no gospel message.



QBiT: Sowing to the Spirit

Part of sowing to the Spirit is sharing all good things with those who teach the gospel. Ga 6.6-8

Text: 6 One who is taught the word must share all good things with the one who teaches. 7 Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap. 8 For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life.

Quick Bible Truths

#consequences, #galatians, #sowing-to-the-spirit

Responsibility: Galatians 6.5

Answering the nudge about a verse on responsibility, here’s my choice. The God’s Word version gets to the point of Galatians 6:5: “Assume your own responsibility.” Similar to it is the NLT: “For we are each responsible for our own conduct.” The ESV and other versions sound more like we’re used to hearing: “For each will have to bear his own load.”

Fewer and fewer in this world are willing to heed this truth. Many even in the church are ready to let others take responsibility, pushing their work off on to preachers, elders, and deacons.

Reminds me of a preacher who directed a youth camp and purposefully broke the rules. Later, he told the board of directors, “I assume responsibility,” but the phrase was more of a scapegoat than a statement of submission. He does his own thing and rules to him are an inconvenience. Including the Lord’s rules.

#accountability, #galatians, #responsibility

Peter caves in, again

Today’s Nudge was inspired by Paul’s telling in Galatians 2, our reading for today, about Peter caving in to the Judaizers in Antioch. Since no one mentioned it, I’ll choose it for my case. NLT gives the sense of verse 12:

When he first arrived, he ate with the Gentile Christians, who were not circumcised. But afterward, when some friends of James came, Peter wouldn’t eat with the Gentiles anymore. He was afraid of criticism from these people who insisted on the necessity of circumcision. (emphasis mine)

With this step back, the very gospel was at stake, so Paul got in his face and rebuked him. The NLT Study Bible has an interesting comment on Peter’s fear:

The friends of James intimidated Peter, who had previously withstood the same sort of criticism with power and eloquence (Acts 11:2-18). Peter might have been trying to avoid creating a barrier for the evangelism of Jews, or he might have been concerned for the safety and well-being of the Jewish Christians in Judea, who experienced persecution from non-Christian Jews (cp. 5:11; 6:12). In any case, his actions were inexcusable.

For all the explanations, I don’t think Peter thought it through, he merely reacted. He saw the pressure coming and ran from it. Was he intimidated by the James party, so called, as an extension of James’ powerful influence in the Jerusalem church? (That’s stretching, I know; also, there’s no indication that this party actually represented James’ position; to the contrary.)

He might have tried one of those explanations on for later defense, but fear reacts first and then reaches for justification.

Paul doesn’t reveal Peter’s response to his rebuke, but knowing the foot-in-mouth apostle, he was one to back up when he realized his error.

#apostle-peter, #galatians, #gospel, #peer-pressure

One of my favorite Bible verses is Galat…

One of my favorite Bible verses is Galatians 2:20 because Paul understood the redemptive work of Christ as being personal. He uses seven personal pronouns in this one verse. To know that the redemptive act of Christ is personal, living in an impersonal world, means more to me than words can express.

“Yes, Jesus loves me! Yes, Jesus loves me! Yes, Jesus loves me! The Bible tells me so.”

#favorite-bible-verse, #galatians, #love