One law very much in question concerned circumcision, a religious rite that meant for Jews much the same thing as baptism came to mean for Christians of a later period. The Christians whose background had been in Judaism could see no reason why this rite should not be required of all Christians, as it was for Jews. As they understood it, the laws given by God through Moses were binding for all time and could never be set aside by human beings or by any set of circumstances that might arise.
One law very much in question concerned circumcision, a religious rite that meant for Jews much the same thing as baptism came to mean for Christians of a later period. The Christians whose background had been in Judaism could see no reason why this rite should not be required of all Christians, as it was for Jews.
As they understood it, the laws given by God through Moses were binding for all time and could never be set aside by human beings or by any set of circumstances that might arise. When people with a Gentile background became followers of Jesus and sought admission to the Christian churches, they saw no particular value in the observance of the rite of circumcision and wanted to be excused from it.
Paul, invited to work with the Gentile element in the church, was sympathetic to their position. The experiences that he encountered with the Mosaic Law prior to his conversion convinced him that no one could ever be saved by mere obedience to a set of external laws.
His own conversion to the Christian faith was brought about by the conviction that the spirit manifested in the life of Jesus took possession of the hearts and minds of individuals and enabled them to be saved. Accordingly, if Gentile Christians were possessed by this spirit, which for Paul was the true meaning of faith, it made little or no difference at all whether they conformed to the letter of the Mosaic Law.
So long as Paul remained with these churches, the Jewish and Gentile elements seemed to get along without any serious trouble, each group following the dictates of its individual conscience. But after Paul left on one of his missionary tours, trouble began when prominent officials of the church in Jerusalem visited the newly established churches in Galatia.
These church visitors insisted that the law concerning circumcision, as well as the other requirements of the Mosaic Law, was binding on all Christians, including those coming from a Gentile background.
Furthermore, they launched a vicious attack on Paul because of his attitude about this matter. They even went so far as to charge that he was an impostor and was guilty of misleading the membership of the churches.
In response to these charges, Paul wrote the Epistle to the Galatians. At the beginning of the letter, Paul expresses astonishment at what has taken place during his absence from the Galatians. Surprised at the attitude taken by the so-called leaders of the Jerusalem church, he is deeply disappointed when the people among whom he labored are persuaded by these visiting brethren to turn from the message that he proclaimed and accept as obligatory the requirements characteristic of Jewish legalism.
Replying to the accusation that he is not a qualified leader of the Christian community, Paul defends his apostleship by declaring that Jesus Christ — not men — called him to that office. In support of this claim, he reviews the experiences that led to his conversion and the circumstances under which he carried on his work among the churches.
He describes his relationship with the so-called "pillars of the church" at Jerusalem, explaining both the purpose and the outcome of his conferences with them. Although he did not receive from them any directive concerning the content of the message he was to proclaim, they were fully informed about the work he was doing and gave their approval to it, specifying in particular that he should devote his main efforts toward working with people entering the church from a Gentile background.
Following this introduction, Paul proceeds to the main point of the letter: The Law, he maintains, lays bare the defects in a person's character. In this respect, its function is like that of a looking-glass, which reveals blemishes but does not remove them.
He writes, "So the law was put in charge to lead us to Christ that we might be justified by faith. By faith, Paul means something more than a mere intellectual assent to a number of facts in connection with the earthly life of Jesus.
He means a commitment on the part of an individual to the way of life exemplified in the person of Jesus. A person possessed by the same spirit present in Jesus will be saved from sin and the spiritual death that sin brings.Summary of the Book of Galatians This summary of the book of Galatians provides information about the title, author(s), date of writing, chronology, theme, theology, outline, a brief overview, and the chapters of the Book of Galatians.
Galatians "For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed [is] every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them.".
I summarised the Bible on Twitter between Aug and Nov - one tweet per chapter, one chapter per day. The @biblesummary account peaked at over 30, followers, . Galatians This is a great summary of the entire book, as Paul once again refutes the legalistic idea that we can work our way into a relationship with God.
In truth, all that matters is the cross. A summary of Galatians, chapter by chapter, from @biblesummary. Every chapter of the Bible in characters or less.
I summarised the Bible on Twitter between Aug and Nov - one tweet per chapter, one chapter per day. The book of Galatians is a Pauline Epistle (letter from Paul).
It was written by the Apostle Paul about 49 A.D. prior to the Jerusalem Council which had taken place in 50 A.D. This quite possibly could have been Paul’s first letter. The key personalities of this book are the Apostle Paul, Peter, Barnabas, Abraham, Titus, and false teachers.