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No Other Gospel December 7, 2012

Posted by flashbuzzer in Books, Christianity.
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Here are my thoughts on Galatians 1:6-10.

Summary: Paul begins by gently reproving the Galatians for allowing themselves to be easily carried away from Christ – who has called them by grace – and adhering to the doctrine of the false apostles. He then sharply reproves the false apostles for:

  • deceiving them
  • laboring to overthrow the Gospel of Christ as a result of their deception.

Now he asserts that if either 1) he, 2) those who have been preaching the Gospel of Christ, or 3) an angel from heaven were to preach another gospel, they should be accursed by God. He drives home this point by asserting that if the false teachers were to preach a gospel other than the one that the Galatians received from him, they should be excommunicated.

Paul concludes by asking the Galatians a rhetorical question: has he been trying to gain human favor, or has he been serving God? The Galatians know that he is being constantly persecuted, implying that he is not adhering to his former way of life where he gained human favor.

Thoughts: In this passage, we see that Paul gently rebukes the Galatians for their errors while sharply condemning the false apostles for their actions. Luther offers some thoughts on this point in his commentary on verse 6:

You see how Paul treats his Galatians, who had fallen away and had been seduced by the false apostles. He does not at first set upon them with vehement and rigorous words but uses a very fatherly manner. Patiently he bears their fall and in a way excuses it…But since his purpose is to raise up those who had fallen and to call them back with a fatherly love from their error to the purity of the Gospel, he does not use such harsh words, especially in the opening; he speaks to them most gently and mildly.

Indeed, Paul was amazingly patient with his spiritual children, especially those who were in error. Even though Paul did not approve of the errors of his spiritual children, he knew that false teachers generally played a significant role in terms of encouraging these errors. This shows that those who are placed in positions of responsibility in the church are held to a higher standard than those who are placed in their care, and they will be rewarded – or punished – to a greater extent based on their deeds. On a related note, I am now confident that this stroll through Galatians will be a pleasant reminder of my excursions through 1 and 2 Corinthians.

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Comments»

1. alienambassador - December 7, 2012

“Not many of you should presume to be teachers, my brothers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly.” Jamers 3:1 NIV 1984.


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