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Galatians 2

June 15, 2012

Moving right along to chapter 2.

by Susan Barnes
26

Susan Barnes

~ writer of insightful posts about God and faith

26 thoughts on “Galatians 2”

  1. There are several things in this chapter that I find interesting one is Paul’s description of the leadership structure in Jerusalem. Personally we have moved a lot geographically and therefore we have been apart of a lot of different churches, which believed they had a New Testament leadership structure. Of course these leadership structures were all different simply because there are many different models of leadership in the NT. Yet wherever we were the leadership structure was promoted as if there were only one model. In reality people were attracted to the leadership structure they preferred and called in NT leadership. Here in Galatians we find a very loose arrangement in the leadership v.2 “to those who seemed to be leaders” v.6 “who seemed to be important” v.9 “reputed to be pillars”. I think it says there is no one “right” way to do leadership. Any model can be good and likewise any model can be abused.

    Secondly I find it interesting that there are always people who v.4 “infiltrate our ranks to spy” some people are not in our fellowships to learn, to grow etc. Some are there because they want to give us a hard time. Sad but true and we need to be aware of it.

    Thirdly v.21 if we could be made right by doing good things than Christ died for nothing. Some reduce the need for Christ’s suffering by maintaining they are gaining something by their good works. How appalling! God made an enormous sacrifice in sending Jesus to live and die for us. How dare anyone discount it.

  2. There are several things in this chapter that I find interesting one is Paul’s description of the leadership structure in Jerusalem. Personally we have moved a lot geographically and therefore we have been apart of a lot of different churches, which believed they had a New Testament leadership structure. Of course these leadership structures were all different simply because there are many different models of leadership in the NT. Yet wherever we were the leadership structure was promoted as if there were only one model. In reality people were attracted to the leadership structure they preferred and called in NT leadership. Here in Galatians we find a very loose arrangement in the leadership v.2 “to those who seemed to be leaders” v.6 “who seemed to be important” v.9 “reputed to be pillars”. I think it says there is no one “right” way to do leadership. Any model can be good and likewise any model can be abused.

    Secondly I find it interesting that there are always people who v.4 “infiltrate our ranks to spy” some people are not in our fellowships to learn, to grow etc. Some are there because they want to give us a hard time. Sad but true and we need to be aware of it.

    Thirdly v.21 if we could be made right by doing good things than Christ died for nothing. Some reduce the need for Christ’s suffering by maintaining they are gaining something by their good works. How appalling! God made an enormous sacrifice in sending Jesus to live and die for us. How dare anyone discount it.

  3. Wendy from the EX...

    I am amazed at the timing …. 3 years before Paul actually went to see the apostles… you see, I would think the timing should have been quicker to bring the message to the Gentiles… but the Lord’s timing is always perfect. That has been proven to me time and again in my personal life. He was taught by the Lord and was not influenced by anyone…very important…the Lord must have taught him intensely about His grace because he was a learned man in the Jewish ways and knew the law well…more scales removed from his eyes??? In Galatians 1, Paul states in vs.14.
    “I was advancing in Judaism beyond many Jews of my own age and was extremely zealous for the traditions of my fathers.”
    So I’m thinking that is why it was so easy for him to see Peter’s hypocrisy and for him to note that the Galatians had so soon turned aside from the teaching of grace…Gal 1:6 “….you are so quickly deserting the one who called you by the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel— which is really no gospel at all. Evidently some people are throwing you into confusion and are trying to pervert the gospel of Christ.” This is happening today … only there has been a whole new set of Gentile dos and don’ts set in place…. lol… we are so pathetic …Give thanks for the Grace of our Lord Jesus Christ.

    More challenges re: the preD scriptures in the previous blog for anyone who dares to read them… lol

    ejexw

  4. Wendy from the EX...

    I am amazed at the timing …. 3 years before Paul actually went to see the apostles… you see, I would think the timing should have been quicker to bring the message to the Gentiles… but the Lord’s timing is always perfect. That has been proven to me time and again in my personal life. He was taught by the Lord and was not influenced by anyone…very important…the Lord must have taught him intensely about His grace because he was a learned man in the Jewish ways and knew the law well…more scales removed from his eyes??? In Galatians 1, Paul states in vs.14.
    “I was advancing in Judaism beyond many Jews of my own age and was extremely zealous for the traditions of my fathers.”
    So I’m thinking that is why it was so easy for him to see Peter’s hypocrisy and for him to note that the Galatians had so soon turned aside from the teaching of grace…Gal 1:6 “….you are so quickly deserting the one who called you by the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel— which is really no gospel at all. Evidently some people are throwing you into confusion and are trying to pervert the gospel of Christ.” This is happening today … only there has been a whole new set of Gentile dos and don’ts set in place…. lol… we are so pathetic …Give thanks for the Grace of our Lord Jesus Christ.

    More challenges re: the preD scriptures in the previous blog for anyone who dares to read them… lol

    ejexw

  5. there is always so much stuff int hese small books of the Bible that it is hard to say noe thig sicks out over another…

    I definitly have seen the whole “spys in the church” scneario play out this last year here in our home church…church politics and people there only to cause trouble…rediclous…

    I find him calling peter out interesting as well….peter was what one would call the head of the church at the time and for paul to call him out had to have been a big deal…had to…

    are we willing to step and testify against false teachings or are we scared?

    i am scared more often than not.

  6. there is always so much stuff int hese small books of the Bible that it is hard to say noe thig sicks out over another…

    I definitly have seen the whole “spys in the church” scneario play out this last year here in our home church…church politics and people there only to cause trouble…rediclous…

    I find him calling peter out interesting as well….peter was what one would call the head of the church at the time and for paul to call him out had to have been a big deal…had to…

    are we willing to step and testify against false teachings or are we scared?

    i am scared more often than not.

  7. jON

    i’m not sure how much of a big deal it was, honestly. not the way we think of a “big deal.” i have to agree with susan that the leadership structure seemed very loose. and i think one of the main reasaons for this is that these men realized that we have only one authority: god.

    and this brings me to what paul refers to twice in this chapter. “the truth of the gospel.” from what i can gather from the context, this “truth” would be that we are not “in good” with god by doing or practicing any certain things as regards to the flesh. which in theory can sound nice, but in practice, from a human perspective, what you end up with is anarchy.

    but a different kind of anarchy. an anarchy that is no anarchy as everyone is subjected to the spirit of god to guide them into truth. yet, it would seem, that this spirit would speak different things to different men at different times based on what was needed at the moment.

    which, i think, is what makes the cross so radical. “the truth of the gospel.” christ’s death on the cross removing our sin for all time. puts us in a very precarious place of freedom. because there are then no traditions or laws that can be placed on us. we have been set free to do as we wish. in truth, we have no authority but god. and god has no authority above him.

    where is the balance here? i think that is different for everyone. but one thing is clear from this chapter. paul is adamant that NOTHING be added to the gospel. nothing be added to the cross. we should never say that you must believe in christ AND THEN YOU MUST…

    such is our freedom. and difficult to give someone else the grace to use their freedom as they see fit if i do not agree with the way they use it. it is much easier to try to control them or lay down rules to ensure they will do what helps me to feel comfortable with being around other people.

    sorry. paul covers all of this in a bit. i’ll leave with this. one of my favorites in all of the bible.

    Gal 2:21 “I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!”

    fhakbiz

  8. jON

    i’m not sure how much of a big deal it was, honestly. not the way we think of a “big deal.” i have to agree with susan that the leadership structure seemed very loose. and i think one of the main reasaons for this is that these men realized that we have only one authority: god.

    and this brings me to what paul refers to twice in this chapter. “the truth of the gospel.” from what i can gather from the context, this “truth” would be that we are not “in good” with god by doing or practicing any certain things as regards to the flesh. which in theory can sound nice, but in practice, from a human perspective, what you end up with is anarchy.

    but a different kind of anarchy. an anarchy that is no anarchy as everyone is subjected to the spirit of god to guide them into truth. yet, it would seem, that this spirit would speak different things to different men at different times based on what was needed at the moment.

    which, i think, is what makes the cross so radical. “the truth of the gospel.” christ’s death on the cross removing our sin for all time. puts us in a very precarious place of freedom. because there are then no traditions or laws that can be placed on us. we have been set free to do as we wish. in truth, we have no authority but god. and god has no authority above him.

    where is the balance here? i think that is different for everyone. but one thing is clear from this chapter. paul is adamant that NOTHING be added to the gospel. nothing be added to the cross. we should never say that you must believe in christ AND THEN YOU MUST…

    such is our freedom. and difficult to give someone else the grace to use their freedom as they see fit if i do not agree with the way they use it. it is much easier to try to control them or lay down rules to ensure they will do what helps me to feel comfortable with being around other people.

    sorry. paul covers all of this in a bit. i’ll leave with this. one of my favorites in all of the bible.

    Gal 2:21 “I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!”

    fhakbiz

  9. I think Jon makes a very good point here: “yet, it would seem, that this spirit would speak different things to different men at different times based on what was needed at the moment” David is a good example of this in 2 Samuel 5:19 and then 5:23. Twice the Philistines had come and twice David inquired of the Lord and got different answers.

    Whereas we are inclined to inquire of the Lord once and expect His answer to be all encompassing for all situations for all time for all people which is just not the case.

    So freedom means we need to be less controlling and more trusting God.

  10. I think Jon makes a very good point here: “yet, it would seem, that this spirit would speak different things to different men at different times based on what was needed at the moment” David is a good example of this in 2 Samuel 5:19 and then 5:23. Twice the Philistines had come and twice David inquired of the Lord and got different answers.

    Whereas we are inclined to inquire of the Lord once and expect His answer to be all encompassing for all situations for all time for all people which is just not the case.

    So freedom means we need to be less controlling and more trusting God.

  11. jON

    amen, sister. amen. i think this is why jesus and paul taught us to recognize fruit. not external actions. to learn how to recognize the spirit of a situation. because that spirit may just be the holy spirit. and if we are not careful, and we live our lives and judge others according to “things of the flesh” (which is what paul is talking about in this book), we just may find ourselves speaking out against holy spirit. and that, my dear friends, should terrify us more than anything as it is the ONLY sin that will not be forgiven.

    odjiogr

  12. jON

    amen, sister. amen. i think this is why jesus and paul taught us to recognize fruit. not external actions. to learn how to recognize the spirit of a situation. because that spirit may just be the holy spirit. and if we are not careful, and we live our lives and judge others according to “things of the flesh” (which is what paul is talking about in this book), we just may find ourselves speaking out against holy spirit. and that, my dear friends, should terrify us more than anything as it is the ONLY sin that will not be forgiven.

    odjiogr

  13. Dee

    This one had me a little bit confused for awhile but I guess that is why we study the bible.

    It seems to me that much of this gospel deals with the difference between the christians who had been jews and those who had been gentiles. Some of them feel the ritual of circumcision is very important while the other have does not put that much importance in it. They felt that Peter spoke for the circumcized while Paul spoke for the uncircusized. In reality the same gospel was given to both men but they travelled diferent paths.

    It was as though those who spied wanted to divide the church in different directions.

    But before it was over with,they realized that both men were preaching the same gospel and embraced them.

    I agree with Hershel. I would have liked to have witnessed Paul calling Peter out as he did.

  14. Dee

    This one had me a little bit confused for awhile but I guess that is why we study the bible.

    It seems to me that much of this gospel deals with the difference between the christians who had been jews and those who had been gentiles. Some of them feel the ritual of circumcision is very important while the other have does not put that much importance in it. They felt that Peter spoke for the circumcized while Paul spoke for the uncircusized. In reality the same gospel was given to both men but they travelled diferent paths.

    It was as though those who spied wanted to divide the church in different directions.

    But before it was over with,they realized that both men were preaching the same gospel and embraced them.

    I agree with Hershel. I would have liked to have witnessed Paul calling Peter out as he did.

  15. Wendy from the EX...

    I think the blaspheming of the Holy Spirit is done purposefully. It is done by those who know exactly what they are doing…it is in the demonic realm. Satan is guilty of this and he will not be forgiven.
    Jesus didn’t say His sheep were at risk at all to do this. We may grieve the Holy Spirit with our doubts and fears but it is not in us to blaspheme Him.
    “My sheep hear my voice and they follow me” So to all those who love the Lord with all your heart mind body and strength and love your neighbour as yourself…

    RELAX.
    “There is no fear in love”

    1John 4:17-19 “Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world.There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love. We love him, because he first loved us.”

    Let’s not be terrified of anything
    We are walking alongside the Lion of Judah.

  16. Wendy from the EX...

    I think the blaspheming of the Holy Spirit is done purposefully. It is done by those who know exactly what they are doing…it is in the demonic realm. Satan is guilty of this and he will not be forgiven.
    Jesus didn’t say His sheep were at risk at all to do this. We may grieve the Holy Spirit with our doubts and fears but it is not in us to blaspheme Him.
    “My sheep hear my voice and they follow me” So to all those who love the Lord with all your heart mind body and strength and love your neighbour as yourself…

    RELAX.
    “There is no fear in love”

    1John 4:17-19 “Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world.There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love. We love him, because he first loved us.”

    Let’s not be terrified of anything
    We are walking alongside the Lion of Judah.

  17. jON

    wendy, hopefully you’ll be back to read this. i just read you last comment.

    so what do you think blaspheming the holy spirit is? i certainly think it is intentional. but i think it is done in ignorance because those who do it DO NOT KNOW HIM. if they did, they would not be blaspheming the way they are.

    rmhgh

  18. jON

    wendy, hopefully you’ll be back to read this. i just read you last comment.

    so what do you think blaspheming the holy spirit is? i certainly think it is intentional. but i think it is done in ignorance because those who do it DO NOT KNOW HIM. if they did, they would not be blaspheming the way they are.

    rmhgh

  19. v.4 This matter arose because some false believers had infiltrated our ranks to spy on the freedom we have in Christ Jesus and to make us slaves.

    Some people are keen to make us slaves. It seems they can't handle the freedom we have in Christ.

  20. v.4 This matter arose because some false believers had infiltrated our ranks to spy on the freedom we have in Christ Jesus and to make us slaves.

    Some people are keen to make us slaves. It seems they can't handle the freedom we have in Christ.

  21. v.13 The other Jews joined him in his hypocrisy, so that by their hypocrisy even Barnabas was led astray.

    No matter how long we have been a Christian and how much we "know" the fear of what others think of us, can still lead us astray.

  22. v.13 The other Jews joined him in his hypocrisy, so that by their hypocrisy even Barnabas was led astray.

    No matter how long we have been a Christian and how much we "know" the fear of what others think of us, can still lead us astray.

  23. v.21 I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!

    Righteousness cannot be gained through the law.

    If God could have spared Jesus the pain and suffering of the cross he would have, but there was no other way for us to be saved.

  24. v.21 I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!

    Righteousness cannot be gained through the law.

    If God could have spared Jesus the pain and suffering of the cross he would have, but there was no other way for us to be saved.

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