You are on page 1of 92

^ s)

-* ^

l2ff6X}^
^^*.
'**"'"<::'
PRINCETON, N. J.

Division

Section . r\ ^ I jO
Shelf Number yj.^..y<^
AN

AMERICAN COMMENTARY

ON THE

NEW TESTAMENT.
EDITED BY

ALVAH HOVEY, D.D., LL.D.

PHILADELPHIA
AMERICAN BAPTIST PUBLICATION SOCIETY,
3420 Chestnut Street.
COMMENTARY
ON THE

Epistle to the Galatians.

BY
ALVAH HOVEY, D. D., LL.D.

PHILADELPHIA
AMERICAN BAPTIST PUBLICATION SOCIETY,
1420 Chestnut Street.
Entered, according to Act of Congress, in the year IBQO, by the
AMERICAN BAPTIST PUBLICATION SOCIETY,
in the Office of the Librarian of Congress, at "Washington.
INTRODUCTION TO THE EPISTLE TO THE GALATIANS.

There are a few general questions in respect to such a writing as the Epistle to the
Galatians which should be answered, if possible, before attempting an explanation of its

language, paragraph by paragraph, and verse by verse. They relate to the writer, the
readers, the occasion, the structui-e, and the date of the Epistle, together with the influ-
ence which it has had upon Christian doctrine and life, and the use which has been made

of it in modern controversy. Correct answers to these questions will lighten the inter-
preter's work, and render it more useful to the reader.

I. THE WRITER.
This Epistle purports to have been written by the Apostle Paul (1 1), and it is num-
:

bered by Eusebius among his undisputed writings. "The epistles of Paul are fourteen,
all well known and beyond It should not, however, be concealed that some have
doubt.
set aside the Epistle to the Hebrews, saying that it was disputed as not being one of
Paul's epistles." ("Hist. Eccl.," III. 3.) This statement deserves full confidence, for
Eusebius was acquainted with a considerable body of Christian literature produced in the
first three centuries, and current at tlie beginning of the fourth, but since lost, and his

account of the estimate which had been i)ut upon the several books of the New Testament,
down to his own time, has never been successfully impeached.
His statement is also confirmed by the earliest versions, for this Epistle is found, in
connection with the other epistles of Paul, in the Syriac and Old Latin Versions which
are assigned to the Second Century, and in the Egyptian, which was probably completed
before the middle of the Third. It is clearly recognized in the Muratorian Canon not
later than A. D. 170, and is contained in all the early manuscripts of the epistles of Paul,
{E. g., xABCDEFa.)'
The statement of Eusebius
is still further confirmed by the language of Irenaeus

"Against Heresies " (111.13:3; 6:5; 7:2; 18:7; 21:1; 22:1; V. 3 5 11:1; : ;

21 1 : 32 2), according to the old Latin translation, which is, of course, less decisive
;
:

than the original Greek would have been by the argument of Tertullian, in his treatise
;

"Against Marcion" (V. 2-4), which attributes the Epistle to Paul, and reasons from it as
if it were accepted by Marcion, who rejected many books of the New Testament by ;

quotations from it in the writings of Clement of Alexandria ("The Pedagogue," I. 6, 11,


and "Stromata," III. 15), who sometimes mentions the name of Paul, and, at others,
calls him simply "the apostle"; and by the words of Origen (e. g., on Rom. 3 27, 29) :

as translated by Rufinus. Jerome says that Origen "wrote five volumes on the Epistle
of Paul .to the Galatians," but only three fragments of this commentary have been pre-
served in a Latin translation,
6
INTRODUCTION TO THE EPISTLE TO THE GALATIANS.
Having Kuch evidence of its genuineness, we need not appeal to traces of an acquaint-
ance with this Epistle on the jtart of the AjHjstolical Fathers, who do not specify tlic New
Testanjent books from which th(;y quote. Yet their writinjfs furnish a degree of proof,
not altogether unwelcome, that this Epistle was extant at the beginning of the Second
Century. (See Cleiuent of K(;nie od Corinth. 3:1; Ignatius ad Polyc. 1 ; Polycarp ad
V\n\. cc. 3, 5, 0, VI.)
It is well known that the Epistle to the Galatians is one of the four which were
recognized by F. C. JJuur as genuine, and that the principal writers of his school have
agHM.'d with their master in this respect. To say nothing of other reasons for their
opitii<m, must bo admitted that the character of these four epistles affords the clearest
it

evidence of their genuineness, for they are intensely real and practical. "They deal with
specific evils ; they refute definite errors ; they repel particular slanders ; they check
given disorders; they assert special rights ; they prescribe rules for the treatment of dis-
tinct offenses. Sharp logic, open rebuke, fervid appeal, generous praise, follow one
another in quick succession. What lov(! to those addressed glows in the writer's lan-
guage ! What readiness to be spent in their service What downright horiesty, fidelity,
!

and greatness of soul breathe in every page These sentences were called forth by the
!

wants of living men, or we may close up the volume of history. Whoever can look upon
them as spurious, must have lost the sense of reality, the power of distinguishing between
the actual and the ideal, and may well despair of findir)g anything trustworthy in all the
records of the past." (Quoted from the author's sermon in "Madison Avenue Lectures.")
It is incHidible that either of these letters was written by any other luan than the
Apostle Paul.
II. THE llEADEliS.
The churches addressed by Paul in this Epistle were located in Galatia, a middle
province of Asia Minor, one third larger than ]*alestine west of the Jordan, and inhabited
by a mixed population of Phrygians, Gauls, (ireeks, Jews, and I'omans. Speaking in a
g(;neral way, the llomaris were there as civil or military officers, with their attendants and
soldiers, and naturally formed a class by themselves, sufjcrior to tlie rest of the people,
and distinct from them in social life. The Jews were there, as in all parts of Asia Minor,
for traffic and, to accomjilish the purpose of tlieir foreign residence, they must have
;

mingled in business with men of every class. The Greeks also were there for a somewhat
similar purpose, and in such numbers that their language became the medium of general
intercourse, Vjcing understood by all the more intelligent peojde. JJut all these were,
nevertheless, to a certain degree foreigners. On the other hand, the IMirygians were the
original possessors of the land, yet, since B. C. 241, if not 279, a period of not less tlian
three centuries, they had been a subject race in Galatia, less influential, and pcjrhaps less
numerous, than the Gauls for the latter, a restless swarm from the full Celtic liive of
;

Western Eurrjpe, had given their name to the province conquered by them, and, it is be-
lieved, had also imparted somewhat of their special temperament to the Christian churches
founded among them by I^iul.
" Galatia," says Jjightfoot, " was parceled out among the three tribes of which the in-
vading Gauls were composed in the following way: the Trocmi occupied the easternmost
jiortion, bordering on C'i{)padocia and Pontus, with Tavium, or Tavia, as their chief town ;

tli(! Tolistobogii, who Wfire situated to the west, on the frontier of IJithynia and Phrygia-

Epictetus, fixfid upon the an(;i(!tit Pessinus for their capital the Tectosages setthwJ in the ;

centre, between the other two tribes, adopting Ancyra as their seat of government, re-
INTRODUCTION TO THE EPISTLE TO THE GALATIANS. 7

garded also as the metropolis of the whole of Galatia." All these tribes were subjugated
to the Roiuan power by the Consul Manlius iu 189 B. c, and the whole territory was
made a Roman province by Augustus in 25 B. c. This was its civil status when visited
by Paul, three quarters of a century later, the Eastern Gauls having learned, with their
Western kiiisnien, the futility of resisting the niiglit of Inijjerial Rome.
Rut what were tlie characteristics of the (Jcltic race, as descrihed Ity classic writers?
And how do they agree with the traits wliich api)ear to haves distinguished the (ialatian
Christians addressed by Paul ? 'J'iie Roman and Greek writers speak of the Celts, or
Gaula, as men of large stature, white skin, blue eyes, and light-colored hair. They refer
to their ingenuity and versatile talent to their warlike sjjirit and desperate courage
; to ;

tlieir restless activity and predatory life. JJut they accuse them of fickleness, intemi)cr-
ance, and superstiticjn. Yet acomiietent modern scholar affirms that "a braver set of men
never faced the enemy than the (Jalli with whom Caesar fouglit. Most of them were chil-
dren of poverty, brought up to suffer and to die. We often read, at earlier periods, of their
losing, through intemperance, the fruits of a hard-fought battle; but nothing of this kind
appears in the Gallic wars." (George Lovo, in "Diet, of Gr. and Rom. Geog.," page 904.)
Caesar remarks that they were "a nation greatly given to superstitions" (rdif/ionihiis).
And it will hardly be denied that, as a race, they were ardent, imjjulsive, and brave, but
at the same time rash, unstable, and, i)erhaps, volatile. This description, drawn from
classic sources, accords in a very striking manner with the suggestions of the K])istle to
the Galatians as to the character of the persons who received that Epistle.
But may be presumed that some of those addressed were of Plnygian descent, and
it

the question may be asked, Wliat sort of men were the Phrygians? As previously stated,
they appear to have been the earliest inhabitants of Central Asia Minor. "Their dispo-
sition was peaceable. No one of their traditions or legends points to a heroic period in
their history, but have a somewhat mystic or fantastic character. Agriculture was
all

and they never took or exacted an oath. Tlieir proper divinities


their chief occupation,
were Cybele and Dionysus, called by them Sabazius. With the worship of these deities
were connected the celebrated orgiastic rites, accompanied by wild music and dances,
which were subsequently introduced among the Greeks. All that we hear of the religion
of the Phrygians during the historical times appears to show that it w;is a mixture of
their own originalform of worsliip with the less pure rites introduced by the Syro-
Phoenician tribes." (Quoted freely from Leonhard Schmitz, in "Diet, of Gr. and Rom.
Geog.," II., page G23.) It may then be conjectured, from all that is known of the
mixed population of Galatia, that the churches founded by Paul were composed chiefly of
persons of Gallic or Phrygian descent, the former being f;ir more influential tlian the
latter, while there was in all of them a small fraction of Greeks, Jews, and po.ssibly

Romans.
III. THE OCCASION.
In his second missionary journey (a. d. 51 or 52) Paul preached Christ for the first
time in Galatia. (Acts IG 6.) The people received the apostle with great kindness and
:

respect (Gal. 4 13, 14), many of them becoming followers of the Lord Jesus.
: About
three years later (t. e., in the autumn of A. D. 54, or early in A. n. 55), he revisited the
churches of this province (Acts 18 27), and was led by what he saw to warn them in
:

strong language against perversions of the gospel which he had preachfid to them ((Jal.
1 .9.) Already, therefore, it may be presumed, had Judaistic doctrines been broached
among them, and listened to with some degree of favor. But the apostle's urgent protest
8 INTRODUCTION TO THE EPISTLE TO THE GALATIANS.
against those doctrines seemed to be effectual, and he left them, doubtless, with the feeling
that anj' danger to their faith had been averted.
Yet he was mistaken. The Judaizing zealots ere long resumed their efforts, asserting

that Gentiles could not be saved without being circumcised and obeying the law. Their
influence was so great that, within a comparatively short time (Gal. 1 6), many were :

almost persuaded to submit to the rite of circumcision. They must have impugned the
apostolic authority of Paul, partly by laying stress on the fact that he had never been
taught by Christ himself, but had obtained his knowledge of the gospel at second hand,
and partly by saying that his doctrine was different from that of Peter and James, who
observed the Jewish law.
How many adversaries of Paul appeared in the Galatian churches, it is impossible to
ascertain ; but it is were Jewish Christians, rather than simply
safe to conclude that they
Jews, for the latter would have urged the Galatians to renounce Christ and obey Moses,
instead of teaching them to supplement the gospel with the law. We may also assume
that this movement did not spring from the churches themselves, but that it came to
them from abroad, and perhaps from Palestine. Compare Acts 15:1; Gal. 2 12. :

But whether these perverters of the gospel were few or many, were from Palestine or
some other place, they were so plausible in their criticism of Paul's authority as an
apostle, or so persuasive in their reasoning for obedience to the law as a condition of ac-
ceptance with God, or so earnest and urgent in their assertions and appeals, that their
Celtic hearers were greatly moved, and on the point of yielding submission to the new
doctrine. This was the emergency which called for the Epistle to the Galatians, and with
assertion most direct, and argument most powerful, and appeal most tender, did the
apostle meet the emergency.

IV. THE STRUCTURE.


This was evidently determined by the object to be accomplished, and, viewed in that
and clear. Indeed, it would be difficult to find anywhere a
light, it is perfectly logical
better specimen of cogent and persuasive writing. The first two chapters assert and
establish Paul's claim to a knowledge of Christian truth as original and complete as that of
the earlier apostles. It had been received by him from Christ by direct revelation, and it
comprised all the f\icts and principles essential to the gospel of the grace of God.
The next two chapters verify the truth and sufficiency of that gospel by an appeal
to the experience of his readers when and since they received it, by an exposition of
the way of life according to the ancient Scriptures, and by a statement of the relation
of the law of God to his promise, of Mosaic legalism to justification through faith in
Christ.
And the last two chapters warn the Galatians against any misapprehension or abuse
of his doctrine by explaining the operation of faith and exhorting them to a holy life in
the freedom which belongs to sons of God.
A fuller and beautiful analysis of the apostle's course of thought is quoted, in con-
nection with the successive paragraphs of the Epistle, from an article by Dr. Hackett in
the "Christian Review" for October, 1861, pages 577-584.

V. THE DATE.
This may be placed without hesitation after Paul's second visit to Galatia, on his
third missionary journey (Acts 18 ; 23), and either during his residence of more than two
INTRODUCTION TO THE EPISTLE TO THE GALATIANS. 9

years ia Ephesus (Acts 19 8, 10, 22), or his visit to Macedonia and Corinth thereafter.
:

(Acts 20 In this period the most interesting group of his epistles was written;
: 1-3.)
namely, those sent to the Corinthians, Galatians, and Romans. And the question to be
answered is this : Was the Epistle to the Galatians written in the first part of his residence
in Ejihesus, or Macedonia and Corinth? Was it written before the
dm-ing his visit to

two Epistles to the Corinthians, or after them? For careful interpreters agree that the
Epistle to the Romans was probably written later than any other belonging to this group.
The principal argument for dating it in the early part of his sojourn at Ephesus is

drawn from (lal. 1 6 ''I marvel that ye are SO SOON removing from him that called
:

you in the grace of Jesus Christ unto another gospel" for "so sooa" (owrws raxews) is
thought to imply that only a short time had passed since his last visit to them, or, possi-
bly, since their conversion. A change taking place after three years would not have been
thus characterized. Indeed, most of those who rely on this argument believe that only a
few months could have elapsed between the earlier events which the apostle has in mind
and the change in the state of the churches which called forth his letter e., betweea i.

his last visit to them and the letter he was writing.


But the inference from these words seems to me precarious. (1) Because the
terminus a quo is by no means certain. It may have been the titue when the Judaizing
teachers began, or resumed, their efforts to shake the confidence of the Galatians in the
apostle and his gospel. If anything in the context forbids this, it must be the words,
"from him that called you in the grace of Jesus Christ," which refer to their conversion
more than three years (if not six) previous to his writing this Epistle. But Paul's refer-
ence to their conversion, as a work of God's grace in Christ Jesus, agrees with the whole
strain of argument in the Epistle, and can easily be accounted for without assuming that
it was the date from which he reckoned in using the words "so soon." (2) Because, as
Lightfoot remarks, "it is possible that 'soon' (raxeW) here may signify 'readily, rashly,'
that is, 'quickly' after the opportunity is oflFered, a sense which the present tense, are
turning renerjades (^"a-weecree)^ would facilitate. See 1 Tim. 5 22 2 Thess. 2:2. In : ;

this case there will be no reference to any independent point of time." The sole refer-
ence would be to the quickness or rapidity of the change. Hence the argument from
Taxe'oi! is untrustworthy.

But the reasons for thinking that this Epistle was written a short time before the
Epistle to theRomans appear to me of real weight. And the most important of these is
the remarkable coincidence of thought and expression in many passages of the two letters.
The following instances of similarity are adduced by Lightfoot in his Introduction to this
Epistle (1) Gal. 3 6=Rom. 4:3; Gal. 3 7=Rom. 4 10, 11
: : Gal. 3 8=Rom. 4:17; : :
; :

Gal. 3 : 9=Rom. 10=Rom. 4:15; Gal. 3 ll=Rom. 3 21, seq. Gal. 3:12=
4 23 Gal. 3
: ; : : : ;

Bom. 10:5; Gal. 3 13, 14=Rom. 4 23, 24 Gal. 3 ]5-18=Rom. 4 13, 14, 16 Gal.
: : ; : :
;

3 I9-21=Rom. 7
: 1-3 Gal. 3 22=Rom. 11 32 3 9, 10; Gal. 3 23-26=Rom.
: ; : : ; : :

7:1-3; Gal. 3 27=Rom. 6:3; 13:14; Gal. 3 29=Rom. 9:8; Gal. 4


:
6, 7= : : .5,

Rom. 8 14-17. (2) Gal. 2 16=Rom. 3 20. (3) Gal. 2 19=Rom. 7:4, cf 6 2-5
: : : : :
;

Gal. 2 20 (cf 5 24 6 14)=Rom. 6 6, 8, 1.


:
(4) Gal. 4 23, 28=Rom. 9
: ; 7, 8. (5)
: : 1 : :

Gal. 5 I4=Rom. 13 8, 9, 10.


: (6) Gal. 5 16=Rom. 8:4; Gal. 5 17=Rom. 7 23, 25
: : : :
;

Gal. 5 17=Rom. 7 15
: Gal. 5 ]8=Rom. 8 2. (7) Gal. 6 2=Rom. 15:1.
:
These ; : : :

parallels render it extremely probable that the two epistles were written about the same
time, or within two or three months of each other.
And it is no less evident that the Epi.stle to the Galatians was written before, rather
10 INTRODUCTION TO THE EPISTLE TO THE GALATIANS.
than after, the Epistle to the Romans, for the former reads like a first draft, and not like
a condensation of the The ampler and calmer unfolding of doctrine
latter. in the Epistle
to tlie Romans agrees with all the circumstances of the case, if we assume : (1) that the
Epistle to the Galatians was written under the excitement of intense anxiety occasioned
by a sudden and dangerous crisis in the churches addressed (2) that those churches were
;

saved from apostasy, and fixed in their adhesion to Ciirist as the only Saviour, by means
of this letter and (3) that, two or three months later, relieved of his extreme anxiety
;

CoDceniing the cliurch at Corinth and the cliurches of Galatia, yet sensible of the un-
wearied activity of tlic Judaizing party, and wishing to forestall its work in Rome, he
wrote the greatest of his epistles to the Christians of that city, and set forth in it with
elaborate care, on the lines which he had sketched in his earlier epistle, the gospel of the
grace of God through the death of Christ for the sins of men.
It seems probable, therefore, that the Epistle to the Galatians was written early
in A. D. 58, soon after Paul's arrival in Corinth, or while he was on his way to that city.


VI. USE AND MISUSE.
As students of the German Reformation are aware, Martin Luther prized this Epistle
very highly, and commented on it frequently. In it he discovered the marrow of the
gospel : the doctrine of justification through faith in Christ.
"It is very necessary," he
wrote, " that this doctrine be kept in continual practice and public exercise, both of read-
ing and hearing. and repeated enough. If this doctrine be
It can never be taught, urged,
lost, then is iilso and salvation, lost and gone. If this doctrine
the doctrine of truth, life,

flourishes, then all good things flourish religion, the true service of God, the glory of
;

God, the right knowledge of all things which are necessary for a Christian man to
know." (Preface, page 130.) The Epistle to the Galatians has been one of the clearest
sources of evangelical truth since the Bible was put in the hands of the people.
But it has also been compelled to serve those who deny the divine origin of the
gospel which it teaches. "The earliest form of Christianity," it is argued, "was a modi-
fied Judaism. The distinctive features of the system current under this name were added
by St. Paul. There was an irreconcileable opposition between the apostle of the Gentiles

and the apostles of the Jews a personal feud between the teachers themselves, and a
direct antagonism between their doctrines. After a long struggle, St. Paul prevailed, and

Christianity our Christianitj'
was the result." (Lightfoot, Introduction, page 66.)
An will, however, lead to a different conclusion
impartial study of the Epistle a conclu-
sion that the account which Paul gives of his relation to the other apostles is worthy of
entire confidence. And, if so, there was no personal feud between the apostles, and no
radical diff"erence between them as to the true way of life through Christ, but, on the
contrary, a full recognition, after suitable proof, of Paul's apostolic mission and doctrine,
on the part of James, Peter, and John, together with an amicable division of the work
of evangelization between them and him. To build upon this Epistle such a theory as
that of Baur is, therefore, I am persuaded, a misuse of its language which will not bear
the test of unbiased criticism.
Note. Among the works consulted with profit in the preparation of this commentary,
besides the grammars of Winer and Buttmann, are the commentaries of Lightfoot,
Ellicott, Jowett, Howson, Sanday, Schaff", Beet, and Luther (translated) in English, with
those of Sioff"ert-Meyer, Ruckert, De AVctte, and Wieseler in German, and those of
Calvin and Bengel in Latin, while, in f?tudying some of the doctrinal passages, the works
INTRODUCTION TO THE EPISTLE TO THE GALATIANS. 11

of Usteri ("Der Paulinische Lehrbegriff "), Messner ("Die Theologie der Apostel"),
and Weiss ("Theology of the New Testament"), have been examined. The writer is
also greatlj' indebted to his former teacher, Dr. H. B. Hackett, not only for the Analysis
which he published first in the "Bibliotheca Sacra," and later, with additions, in the
"Christian Review" for 18G1, 577-584, but also for his articles in the "Bibliotheca
Sacra," XIX., 211-225, and XXII., 138-149, on the translation of several passages of
the Epistle, and for the eloquent oral exposition of the whole Epistle which he gave to
the class of 1848 in tbe Newton Theological Institution, as preserved in notes and a
paraphrase written at the time.
THE EPISTLE TO THE GALATIANS.
CHAPTER I.

PAUL, an apostle, (not of men, neither by man, but 1 Paul an apostle (not from men, neither through
by Jesus Christ, and God the Father, who raised 1 man, but through Jesus Christ, aud God the Father,
him from the deaa ;

1 Or, a mau.

Ch. 1 1-5 Address and Greeting. appeared in Galatia, that his authority was
: :

"In the introduction," says Dr. Hackett, derived from men, perhaps from the church at
"Paul asserts in the strongest manner the Antioch. Neither by man (or, nor through
divine origin of his apostleship, and his ap- By this added clause Paul denies
a man).
pointment to it witiiout any human interven- any man had been the medium or chan-
that
tion ; and invokes on the Galatians the usual nel through which his commission to serve as
benediction from God the Father and the an apostle had been made known to him. It
Lord Jesus Christ. In this connection he was in.no sense or degree human. Doubtless
brings incidentally into view the sacrifice and it had been urged in favor of the higher dig-

death of Christ as the means of human salva- nity of the earlier apostles that they had been
tion, and thus announces the great theme of commissioned by the lips of Christ himself,
the Epistle at the outset. (1 1-5.)" See
: while Paul must have received his commis-
" Christian Review" for 1861, page 578. sion through some one who was a disciple be-
1. Paul
called Saul in the earlier chapters fore him. But by (throtigh) Jesus Christ
of the Acts. (7:58; 8:1; 9:1,4, 8.) The name who had appeared to him on the way to Da-
'
Paul appears for the first time in Acts 13
' mascus (ac3 9:3, seq. 26: 16-18), and had pointed
: ;

9, after the apostle had entered upon his dis- out at that early day the special work which
tinctive missionary work among the Gentiles. he was to perform. Even if we suppose that,
Saul is a Hebrew, and Paul a Roman name. according to Luke's narrative in Acts 9 3, :

The meaning of the former is asked for, and seq., Jesus Christ made use of Ananias as his
the meaning of the latter little. The resem- mouthpiece, the words of Christ to Paul ren-
blance in sound must be considered accidental. dered the language of Ananias virtually
Probably both names were given him in child- Christ's language, and the apostle was there-
hood, as by descent he was a Jew or Hebrew fore justified in treating it as such, overlooking
(Phil. 3 :
5), and in civil standing a Roman. the human agency. And God the Father
(Acts 16 37; 22 25-28.)
: :

Apostlc uscd here in the
that is, his apostolic commission was con-
highest Christian sense of the word to denote veyed through Jesus Christ, who is insepar-
one specially commissioned to preach the gos- ably united in action with God the Father, so
pel. The apostles held the first place under that Christ's action is really his Father's action
Christ in his kingdom. See 1 Cor. 12 28, seq. :as well. In this case, at least, what Jesus did
Eph. 4 11. In addressing his epistles to the the Father did. The expression 'Father' is
:

Thessalonians, Paul had made no reference to best understood as moaning here the Father
his apostleship, doubtless because it was ad- of Jesus Christ. Who raised him from the
mitted without question by them but now, dead. This seems to have been added be-
;

writing to churches in which his equality with cause it was not during his earthly life that
the original apostles had evidently been de- Jesus appeared to Paul and made him an
nied, he asserts it promptly and positively at apostle; it was rather after his resurrection
the outset, and in his later epistles he does the and ascension. And that resurrection was the
same thing vvith more or less emphasis. Not work of his Father, though not in such a sense
of (or, froTYi) men. These words deny that as to exclude his own participation in it. The
his commission was of human origin. This meaning of the Greek expression, translated
denial may have been called forth by the in- 'from the dead' ( vtKpi,v), is explained by
sinuations of Judaizing teachers, who had Winer( "Grammar," p. 123), as follows: "'the
13
14 GALATIANS. [Ch. L
2 And all the brethren which are with me, unto the 2 who raised him from the dead), and all the brethren
churches of Galatia: who are with me, unto the churches of Galatia:
3 Grace be to you, and peace, from God the Father, 3 Grace to you aud peace i from God the Father,
and from our Lord Jesus Christ, 4 and our I-ord Jesus Cbrist, who gave himself for
4 Who gave himself for our sins, that he might de- our sins, that he might deliver us out of this pres-
liver us from this present evil world, according to the ent evil 2 world, according to the will of ^ our God
will of God and our Father:

1 Some ancienc authorities rend from God our Father, and the Lord Jeaua Christ 2 Or. age 3 Or, God and our Father.

dead' appears to signify 'the assembly of the The preposition 'from' is connected with both
dead.'" See also Thayer's " Lexicon of the names, and marks them equally as sources of
New Testament," on the word vexpo^. grace and peace; not one as the source and
2. And all the brethren which (that) are the other as the medium, but both as the
with me. This does not mean all the mem- source a form of expression consistent with ;

bers of the church where he was, or all the the doctrine of the Trinity, but inconsistent
Christians that happened to be present with with any other view of Christ's relation to the
Paul when he indited this letter, but rather Father. Paul conceived of divine grace as
'all the brethren who are at present my com- coming from Christ as well as the Father.
panions in travel and preaching.' Thus, when 4, Who gave himself for our sins that
writing to the Thessalonians, he associated is, delivered himself up to death with refer-
with himself Silvanus and Timothy in his ence to our sins, or on acccount of our sins
salutation to the church. In the present case that is, to make expiation for them. See 3 12, :

he forbears to give the names of his associates seq., and Rom. 3 23, seq. This submission :

in labor, though he must have communicated to death for the expiation of our sins' was in
'

to them his purpose of writing the letter, and order to something further which is named
very likely tiie substance of the letter itself in the next clause.
Unto the churches of Galatia that is, the That he might deliver us from {out of)
churches located somewhere in the province this present evil world {age). 'The pres-
of Galatia. It maybe
inferred that they were ent age' is here described as morally evil, be-
not all in one but were independent bod-
city, cause the men who give character to it are
ies found in different places. None of them wicked. Compare with this language the
can be positively a.ssigned to particular cities, words of Paul in the last part of the first chap-
as Ancyra, Pessinus, or Tavium. ter to the Romans. There can be no doubt of
The entire absence of commendation in this the awful moral condition of mankind in all
address is worthy of notice. The Christians parts of the known world when the apostle
to whom he writes are simply 'churches.' He wrote this Epistle. Of course, deliverance out
can pray for them, but he is now in no mood of the present evil age must mean deliverance
to praise them. Deeply agitated by what he out of its influence and its doom, a deliver-
has heard of their fickleness and inclination to ance which could only be effected by rescuing
Judaism, he has no heart to speak in this place men from the power and the penalty of sin.
of the evidences of divine life in those to whom According to the will of God and {even)
he writes. our Father. This expression is to be con-
3. Grace be to you, and peace. 'Grace' nected with the words 'gave himself for our
is unmerited favor, and when it is God's favor sins,' as modified by the end sought, that he '

its natural result is 'peace.' From God the might deliver us,' etc. The voluntary death
Father. According to Westcott and Hort, it of Christ which was prerequisite to the salva-
should be 'God our Father,' the pronoun tion of men, is here declared to have been in
'our' being connected with Father' and not accord with the will of God, who is at the same
'

with Lord.' But the common reading has time characterized as 'our Father." The pro-
'

more support in the uncial manuscripts and noun 'our' naturally refers to Paul and his
the early versions than the reading adopted readers, regarded as Christians, and therefore
by Westcott and Hort. It should therefore be to all who are the children of God by adop-
preferred. And {from) our Lord Jesus tion. See Rom. 8: 15-17. It cannot be safely

Christ. Here grace and peace are supposed interpreted as representing mankind, irrespect-
'
'

to come from Christ as well as from the Father. ive of union with Christ. The Greek original
Ch. I.] GALATIANS. 15

5 To whom he glory for ever and ever. Amen. 5 and Father : to whom be the glory i for ever and ever.
6 I marvel tbat ye are so soon removed from him Ameu.
thai called you into the grace of Christ unto another 6 1 marvel that ye are so quickly removing from
gospel him who called you in the grace of Christ unto a
1 Gr. unto the ages of the ages.

may, however, be translated 'according to the once as false, merely on the ground of such
will of our God and Father'; and this trans- difference." (Hackett).
lation is preferred by Liglitfoot, on the ground 6. I marvel that ye are so soon re-
that "tlie article not being necessary before moved {so quickly removing) from him that
God (9eoD), seems to be added to bind the two called you into {iyi) the grace of Christ
clauses togetiier and connect both with 'our' unto another gospel. Dr. Hackett translates
di/ttii')" literally, 'of us.' But a comparison of thus "I marvel that ye are so soon removing
:

the same expression in Phil. 4: 20; 1 Thess.l 3 from him who called you in the grace of Christ
:
;

3: 11, 13, with a somewhat similar expression unto a different gospel." The abruptness
in Eom. 1 7 1 Cor. 1 3 2 Cor. 1 2, is favor- with which Paul introduces the occasion for his
: ; : ; :

able to the translation first given. Epistle reveals his intense and painful anxiety
5. To whom be (the) glory forever and
an anxiety mingled witli surprise and press-
ever. Amen. It is better to retain the ar- ing for expression. The word translated mar- '

ticle of the original text before the word vel' occurs very often in the New Testament,
'glor^',' for the glory referred to must be, and in the Common Version is frequently
either that which is due to God for his gracious rendered 'wonder.' It may denote either a
will in the work of redemption (see the pre- joyful or a painful surprise (Man. 8:10; Mark 6:6),
vious clause), or that which "especially and a sudden and powerful emotion occasioned by
alone belongs to God" (EUicott), and is there- something that is very admirable or ver3'^ dread-
fore a definite glory. ful, and in either case unexpected. Whether
Thus the apostle enriches his address and the Greek words translated 'so quickly'
salutation to the churches of Galatia with the have any reference to the short time which
principal truths which he is about to defend had passed since their conversion, or since the
as the only gospel. Among these truths are apostle's last visit to them, is doubtful. They
the sacrificial death of Christ, his resurrection may refer to the quickness with which the Ga-
by the power of God, his divinity and union latians had yielded in some measure to the
with the Father, his direct agency in making new doctrine, to the celerity or rapidity with
Paul an apostle, and the fact that all this was which they were turning a friendly ear to the
done in obedience to the Father's will. Judaizing teachers who had come among
6-10. Paul's Surprise AT THE Sudden them. And if so, they furnish no clue to the
Falling Away of his Headers to an- date of the Epistle. At most, they point to the
other Kind of Gospel, and his Denunci- shortness of the time since the false teachers
ation OF THOSE WHO TaUGHT IT A DE- had begun their evil work in Galatia. Sne
NUNCIATION WHICH IS Natural because Introduction, V. According to the teach-
REDOES NOT SeEK HuMAN FaVOR BUT THE ing of Paul elsewhere, the words 'him that
Approval of God. Paul " expresses his as- called you' must refer to God the Father
tonishment at the sudden defection of the Ga- (Rom. 8:30), though the Call may have been
latians from the truth, characterizes the error ministered to them by the Holy Spirit and
which they had embraced, or were in danger the word of truth. (zThess. 2: u; Eph. 3:6.) The
of embracing, as an utter and fatal perver- words in the grace of Jesus Christ' are added
'

sion of the gospel, and pronounces the conduct toshow thatthisdivine calling has its ground
of those who had perplexed and misled them to or source in Christ. As Christians "were
be deserving of the severest reprobation and chosen in him before the foundation of the
punishment. He takes the ground that the plan world" (Eph.i:4), so likewisc are they called
of salvation as preached by himself was the in his grace. The whole work of salvation
true and unalterable way of salvation, and springs from him. Hence, according to the
that any different sj^stem, though taught by Lord himself, prayer is to be offered in his
an angel from heaven, must be rejected at name, and the answer to it from God will come
16 GALATIANS. [Ch. I.

7 WLich is not another; but there be some that 7 different gospel which is not another (/o.?;)^/; only
;
i

trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. there are some that trouble you, and w ould pervert
8 liui tlioiigli we, or an angel liom heaven, preach 8 the gospel of Christ. But though we, or an augel
any other gospel unto you than that which we have from heaven, should preacli -unto you any gospel
preached untu you, let hiiu be accursed. ^olher than that wliich we preaclied unto you, let
9 As we said before, so say 1 now again, If any man 9 him be anathema. As we have said before, so say
preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have I now again, If any man preacheth unto you any
received, let him be accursed. gospel other than tliat which ye received, let him be

1 Or, which ia nothing else save that, etc 2 Some ancieut authorities omit unto you 3 Or, contrary to that.

in his name. (John i6: 23.) Paul is never weary sion of it. The Judaists bring you another "
of extolling tiie grace of Jesus Christ. And by gospel, but it is no gospel at all." (Ellicott.)
the grace of Jesus Christ he evidently means The gospel of Christ' may here signify either
'

the unmerited favor bestowed on men by rea- the gospel proclaimed by him or the gospel con-
son of the voluntary death of Christ in their cerning him that is to say, good news issuing
Lehalf, since he died a just One for unjust. from him as its source, or good news concerning
iSee 1 Peter 3: 18. The expression 'another him as its object. The latter interpretation is
gospel' signifies in the original, 'another sort preferable, though certainty cannot be gained.
of gospel' or a gospel ditfering in kind from 8. But though (even if) we, or an angel

that which Paul had preached. The adjective from heaven, preach any other gospel
here rendered 'another' (eTepoc) is familiar to unto you than that which Ave have
us in the first syllable of the English word preached unto you, let him be accursed
heterogeneous, and is distinctfrom the word "But even if we, or an angel from heaven,
translated another
'
' in the next clause.^ Paul should preach to you any other gospel con-
means by it a 'different' gospel. trary to that which we preached." (Hackett.)
7. Which is not another that is, not The Greek expression (irap" &) may mean 'con-
another real gospel deserving the name and trary to that which,' or 'different from that
worthy to be called a second gospel. This it is which.' (Acts 18 : 13; Rom. 1:26; 1 Cor. 3:11.) The first

not, because, though proclaimed as such, it is and sharper meaning is preferable here. The
no gospel at all. But there be some that expression, which we preached (as good
'

trouble you, and Avould pervert the gos- news) to you,' must refer to the preaching of
pel of Christ. Perhaps it would be wiser to Paul and his companions in Galatia, at his
translate the words rendered 'but,' (ei ij-v) first and second visits to that province, the

'save that' (Ellicott), for such is their ordi- gospel which led to their conversion, and
narj' meaning, and to explain the clause as which, until recently, they had cherished as
follows: 'AVhich is not another, except in the power of God unto salvation without the
this sense that there are some that harass help of Judaism. Thus Paul invokes the
your minds and wish to pervert the gospel of judgment of God upon any and every one
Christ' 'there are some who are troubling
;
who might pervert the gospel and from the ;

you by heir desire and attempt to pervert tremendous earnestness of his language it is
the gospel.' The thought may also be ex- necessary to believe that be had absolute con-
pressed as follows, 'which is not another,' fidence in the correctness of his own doctrine.
except that it is a peace-destroying perversion He knew that what he preached was the very
of the gospel; and so, a different kind of gos- truth, as it is in Jesus; and he felt that the
pel. In other words, there are those among preaching of a different gospel would imperil
you whose teaching is no true gospel; but, the salvation of men and obscure the grace of
though dealing with the gospel, and perhaps God.
claiming to improve it, is a complete perver- 9. As we (have) said before, so say I

tYet it is not always used in its distinctive sense. 1:8. " Thus while aAAos is generally confined to a nega-
Often It appears to be simply equivalent to aAAos. tion of indentity, erepoj sometimes implies the negation
Lightfoot says tliat aAAo? is another as one besides,' ' of resemblance." See 2 Cor. 11 4, where the two words
:

irtpos another as 'one of two' .... Thus aAAoy are used appropriately, as they are here. In many cases,
adds, while eVepos distinguishes. Now when our atten- however, they will be interchangeable compare Matt. :

tion is confined to two objects, we naturally compare 11:3 with Luke 7:20. Hesychius explains eVepoi'.
and contrast them hence erepo^ gets to signify unlike,
;
' aAAoi-' r) aAAoto>'' ij eV Toil' Svolv' rj apuaTtpov, viov
opposite,' as Xenophon's " Cyropedia, " VIII. 8 Ex. '.i, ;
&evTtpov.
Ch. L] GALATIANS. 17

10 For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek 10 anathema. For am I now seeking the favour of men
to please men? for if I yet pleased men, I should not or of Uod? or am I striving to please men? if!
be the servant of Christ. were still pKasing men, I ."hould not be a servant
11 But 1 certify you, brethren, that the gospel which of Christ.
was preached of me is not after man. 11 For 1 make known to you, brethren, as toucliing
the gospel which was preached by me, that it is nut

1 Gr. bondservant.

now again, if any man (one) preach any men, though it was no time for him to do this
other gospel unto you than that ye have now? 'Now' (apTi) he could not be a bond-
received, let him be accursed. See Re- servant of Christ, if he were to speak smooth
vised Version.* The apostle doubtless refers things to the Galatians, or to hesitate to de-
not to the pre-
in the first clause of this verse nounce those who were leading them to accept
ceding verse, but to his preaching, together a difl'erent gospel, even one that weakened
with others, to the Galatians, when he visited their faith in Christ. Others suppose that he
them tlie second time and, if so, he must
; may refer implicitly to what he had done
then have detected (or foreseen) the presence before his conversion. (Hackett.) But this
of false teachers among them. For tlie im- is less probable.
precation is too strong to have been uttered 11, 12-2 : 14. The Apostle Confirms his
when there were no signs of peril. From his Teaching by Showing that he had not
language in this verse it is also manifest that Received his Gospel from Men, but
Paul did not entertain the view which is now FROM Jesus Christ Himself, by Direct

somewhat popular tliat it is of little conse- Revelation. His theme is stated in verses
quence what a man believes, provided his 11and 12, and its proof is given in the remain-
conduct is blameless. He knew that spiritual der of this chapter and the first fourteen verses
life must be nourished by truth, and not by of the next. Says Dr. Hackett: "He claims
error; and he was profoundly disturbed by that his knowledge of the gospel proved to is

the danger to which the Galatians were ex- be not of human, but of divine origin, nega-
posed. tively, by the fact that immediately on his
But the apostle was aware that such lan- conversion he entered on the full exercise of
guage would seem to his readers severe and his office as an apostle, without any consulta-
repulsive; therefore he explained his motive tion with human advisers (i:ii-i7); that he
for using it. preached the gospel for years without any
For do I now persuade men, or
10. intercourse, or even personal acquaintance,
God? The word 'persuade' ('am I now with the apostles; and that when at length he
persuading') is here used in the sense of con- went to Jerusalem and saw some of their
ciliating; and the apostle meant to affirm by number, it was a visit of friendship merely,
this question that he was writing thus sternly and had no relation whatever to his attaintnent
with a view to the friendship of God, rather of a more perfect knowledge of the Christian
than the good will of men. In other words, doctrines, (i : 18-24.)
"

he was not attempting to gain human favor, Slightly' diflTerent is the paraphrase of Light>
but divine. And by the next question Or foot: "The
Son in me, the
revelation of his
do I seek (am I seeking) to please men? preach to the Gentiles, were acts of his
call to
he denies with emphasis such a motive for his good pleasure. Thus converted, I took no
language, and then adds: If I yet pleased counsel of human advisers. I did not betake
(or, were still pleasing) men, I should not myself to the elder apostles, as I might natur-

be the servant of Chirst literally, Christ's ally have done. I secluded myself in Arabia;
bondservant. 'Yet,' or, still; that is, after and, when I emerged from my retirement,
all his experience. "The Greek for 'yet (tVt) instead of going to Jerusalem I returned to
'

does not imply tliat Paul had ever been a time- Damascus."
server." CLightfoot. ) No; but may it not 11-12. Theme. But I certify to you,
imply that he had often sought to conciliate brethren. The Revised Version is better For :

'
" As we have said before if any one preaches to you any other gospel contrary to that which j9
received." (Hackett.)
18 GALATIANS. [Ch. I.

12 For I neither received it of man, neither was I I 12 after man. For neither did I receive it from i man,
nor was 1 taught it, but il came lo me through reve-
taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ. |

1 Or, a man,

I make known to you, brethren. Documentary 12. For I neither received it of man,
evidence in favor of 'for' (yap) slightly out- neither was I taught it. The 'I' is some-
weighs that in favor of 'but' (S), and may what emphatic, perha))s because there is an
therefore be followed. The connection of unexpressed reference to the older apostles;
thought is accordingly this If I should seek 'for neither did I, any more than the other
: '

to please men when the gospel is being per- apostles, receive it from (a) man, for example,
verted as now, I should not be Christ's faithful Peter.' Sicffert objects to this as improbable,
bondservant, for this gospel was received by me because there has been no allusion thus far to
from Christ himself and so expresses his will.' the other apostles, and suggests that the im-
The formula 'I make known to you' shows plied reference may be to the readers of the
that Paul attaches grave importance to what Epistle: 'I did not (as did you) receive it
he is about to say. Compare 1 Cor. 12 3 from a man.' But according to Buttmann the
:

15: 1; 2 Cor. 8: 1, and the similar phrase, pronoun is sometimes inserted without being
!"I would not have you ignorant," in Kom. emphatic and, if that be the case here, there ;

.1 : 13 ; 1 2 Cor. 1
Cor. 10 :8 11 ; 12 : 1 ; : ; is no tacit reference in it to any unnamed
Thess. 4 13. Observe, however, that he now
:
party. 'Neither (nor) was I taught it.'
addresses the members of the churches of Gal- Lightfoot remarks that this clause was added
atia as brethren.' They are not, then, in his
' to explain and enforce the foregoing state-
estimation, apostates from Christ. They have ment, and thus to bring out the contrast with
not rejected the gospel of the grace of God. 'by revelation': "I received it, not by in-
But they are in danger of doing this, for they struction from man, but by revelation from
'

are looking in the wrong direction, giving ear Christ." But Ellicott holds that the verb
to dangerous in a move-
error, and involved '
was taught' points more to subjective appro-
ment which, continued, will separate them
if priation, and 'received' to objective. And
from God. And the whole object of his Epis- SiefTert finds the distinction to be simply this,

tle is to arrest this movement and bring them that one verb defines the mode of communi-
back to steadfast confidence in Christ as their cation while the other does not. Certainly
sole and sufficient Saviour. So he addresses the second verb is more definite as to manner
them heartily as 'brethren.' That the than the first, and so gives natural progress to
gospel Avhich was preached of me. Com- the course of thought. But (it came) by
pare Revised Version, As totichiyig the gospel (through) the revelation of Jesus Christ.
which was preached by me. Perhaps the full Omit the definite article before revelation as in
force of the original would be given by such the Revised Version, and understand that 'of
a rendering as this " in respect to the gospel Jesus Christ' means 'proceeding from Jesus
:

which was preached as good news by me" Christ.' The Greek word translated 'revela-
(to vayyiKi.ov to fvayy(\i.aBiv.) IS nOt alter tion' signifies, literally, an uncovering, un-
man, or, that it is not after man. That is, veiling, disclosing. But in the New Testa-
it is not of such a nature as it would have ment it always denotes a disclosure of reli-
been if originated by man, it is not "after gious truth before unknown. This disclosure
any human fashion or standard," it is neither is made to the soul either by God himself or
in essence or object such a gospel as accords by the ascended Christ, especially through the
with human ideas of religion. Evidently operation of the Holy Spirit 10), and is
(i Cor, 2 :

Paul did not suppose that his gospel was a thus distinguished from other modes of in-
fruit of human speculation, or experience, or struction. (Thayer, sub voce.) It maj' be
consciousness. Moral and religious evolution effected in part by a theophany or Christo-
had no place in his conception of the origin of phany, but no visible manifestation is neces-
Christianity. He knew of man-made religions, sary to it. A partial revelation of Christian

,and esteemed them wholly unlike the gospel truth, before unknown, was made to Paul
or the gospel wholly different from them. when Jesus appeared to him on the way to
Ch. I.] GALATIANS. 19

Vi For ye have heard of luy conversation in time 13 lation of Jesus Christ. For ye have heard of my
past iu the Jews' religinu, liow Ihut beyond measure manner of life in time past in the Jews' religion,
I persecuted the church <if Ciod, and wasted it: how
that beyond measure X persecuted the church of
H And profiled in the Jews' religion above man^ my 14 God, and made havock of it: and I advanced in the
equals in mine own nation, being more exceedingly Jews' religion beyond many of mine own age ^among
eealous of the traditions of my fathers. my countrymen, being more exceedingly zealous

1 Gr. in my race*

Damascus; but we cannot suppose that his Stephen (Actss: i), and some of them doubtless
knowledge of the gospel was completed at went as far as Damascus, preaching the word
once. Says Ellicott: '"
It is a subject of con- there, and probably making disciples; but as
tinual discussion whether the teaching of St. yet there was but one church. By calling it
Paul was the result of one single illumination, 'the church of God,' Paul shows how sacred
or of progressive development. . The most an institution he now felt it to be, and how
. .

natural opinion would certainly seem to be deep was his compunction for attempting to
111 is: that as, on the one hand, we may rever- lay it waste. Not that he speaks of his effort
ently presume that all the fundamental truths as a wholly futile atteinpt; he means rather
of the gospel would be fully revealed to St. to say that he was engaged for a time in perse-
Paul before he commenced preaching, so, on cuting and devastating it. This is the most
the other hand, it miglit have been ordained, obvious explanation of the,tense of the Greek
that (in accordance with the laws of our spir- verbs. Many were put to death; many were
itual nature) its deepest mysteries and pro- imprisoned. (Aci* 8:3; 9 2; 26 lO; 1 Cor. 15:9.)
: l, :

foundest harmonies should be seen and felt And the apostle mentions this to prove that he
through the practical experiences of his apos- could not have received the gospel from men
tolical labors." One cannot avoid conjectur- before his conversion, since he was at that
ing that during the first three years of his time a fierce persecutor of the church.
conversion a great part of the truth which he 14. And (that I) profited {advcmced) in the
was to preach as the only gospel was revealed Jews' religion above many, my equals in
to him with divine clearness and evidence.my own nation. "And went forward in
13-2 : 14. Proof that He did Not Re- Judaism beyond many companions of the
ceive THE Gospel from Man. same age." (Hackett.) 'My equals' means
13. For ye have heard of my conversa- 'of my own age.' He outstripped the Jewish
tion in time past, etc. Compare Revised young men of his years in knowledge of the
Version above. Probably from his own lips law, and in zeal for its observance. Writing
when he preached the gospel to them. " The concerning this part of his
to the Philippians
history of his past career as a he describes himself as one who was, "as
persecutor life,

formed part of his preaching. See Acts 22: touching the law, a Pharisee as touching ;

2-21; 20 4-23; 1 Cor. 15 8-10." (Lightfoot.) zeal, persecuting the church as touching the
: :
;

So remarkable had been his spiritual life that righteousness which is in the law, blameless."
a sketch of it would in many c.ises be not only (3 5, 6.) Paul must then have been a very
:

appropriate, but almost neces-arj\ In the scrupulous as well as zealous Pharisee, a pro-

Jews' religion literally, in Judaism means nounced ritualist, and a conspicuous adversary
while he still observed the Jewish rites, and of the new sect that was rising in Jerusalem.
trusted in obedience to the Mosaic law for Being more exceedingly zealous of (for)
salvation. In the Jewish religion is perhaps the traditions of my fathers. This clause
the best translation. How that beyond points out the sphere in which he excelled
measure I persecuted the church of God, many of his own age. The adverb (7repr<7o-
and wasted (or, made havoc of) it. The T><uj) retains its comparative sense, 'more ex-
'

church may here signify, it is said, the Chris- ceedingly.' He was far more of a zealot than
'

tian brotherhood, when-ver they might be; many of his coevals for the traditions handed
but it may signify as well the first organized down by the rabbins from the fathers; he fol-
society of Christians, located at Jerusalem. lowed them, upheld thein, asserted them with
To 1)6 sure, these were scattered abroad by the almost fonatical earnestness. Compare Matt.
persecution that broke out after the stoning of 5 21 15 2; Mark 7 3. : They were prob-
; : :
20 GALATIANS. [Ch. I.

15 But when it pleased God, who separated me from 15 for the traditions of my fathers.But when it was
luy mutlKTs womb, and called me by his grace, the good pleasure of God, who separated lue, even
Iti To reveal his Son in me, that I might preach him from my mother's womb, and callt-d me through
among the heathen; immediately I conferred not with 16 his grace, to reveal his Son in me, tlial I might
Hesh and biood preach him among the Gentiles; immediately I

ably as sacred to him as the law of Moses; to nature, and led him so quickly' into the new
some they appear to have been more sacred. life. The change of that moment was radical,
So then it was certain that he had not been permanent, and wholly of grace. "Observe,"
taught the Christian religion by any man be- says Lightfoot, "how words are accumulated
fore his conversion, and he now proceeds to to tell upon the one point on which he is in-

giiow that he could not have been taught it in sisting the sole agency of God as distinct
that way after his conversion. Says Liglit- from his own efforts." 'To reveal his Son in
foot: "Then came my conversion. It was the me' that is, within me, in my spirit or con-
work of God's grace. It was foreordained sciousness, so that I for the first time perceived
before I had any separate e.vistence. It was his true character and work. This prepares
not therefore due to any merits of my own it one for the next clause far better than does the
;

did not spring from any principles of my own. explanation 'through me,' which is favored
The revelation of his Son in me, the call to by Lightfoot and others, appealing to ver. 24
preach to the Gentiles, were acts of his good and 1 Tim. 1 16. Besides, there is great
:

pleasure. Thus converted, I took no counsel weight in Ellicott's view, that wherever the
of human advisers. I did not betake myself primary meaning [of the preposition iv\ gives
to the elder apostles, as I might naturally a sense which cannot be objected to dogmati-
have done. I secluded myself in Arabia, and cally or exegeticall}-, we are bound to abide
when I emerged from my retirement, instead by it. Both subjectively, by deep inward rev-
of going to Jerusalem, I returned to Damas- elations, as well as objectively, by outward
'

cus. manifestations, was the great tipostle prepared


15, 16. But when it pleased God, who for the work of the ministry."
separated me, etc. The moaning of the That I might preach him among the
original would be more exactly represented heathen (or. Gentiles'). It was God's good
l)y the following translation: But when he pleasure to reveal his Son in the heart of
that set me apart from my m,other' s womb, Paul, in order that Paul might preach him
and called me through his grace, was pleased among the Gentiles. Are we then authorized
to reveal his Son in me, that I m,ight preach by this lan.guage to say that one of the reasons
him among the Gentiles, etc. 'Set me apart' why God's grace was imparted to Paul was
that is, assigned or devoted me to a special the extraordinary service, which, when con-
work, even the preaching of Christ to the verted, he would be qualified and employed
Gentiles. Compare Kom. 1 1 and Acts 13 2.
: : to render in preaching to the Gentiles? It is
The word 'separated' in the Common and an interesting and far-reaching question which
the Revised "Versions is ambiguous. Paul we thus propose to the reader, without giving
represents himself as singled out and
apart set a categorical answer to it ourselves. Im-
by the will of God from his very birth to the mediately I conferred not with flesh and
apostleship. And the next clause, 'called me blood. The adverb 'immediately,' or,
by his grace,' directs attention to another act straightvmy appears to modify, not only this
of God namely, the divine agency in his con- statement, but also the two following state-
version. The same verb is used in Rom. 8 : ments. He first declares what lie did not do,
30: "And whom he foreordained, them he and then what he did do, directly after his con-
also called." This divine calling compre- version. Of course, the adverb is not to be so
hends all that God does to awaken the mf)ral urged as to make it contradict the account of
nature of a sinner and bring hitn to repent- Luke, that Paul abode three days in Damas-
ance. In Paul's case it was the supernatural cus before his sight was restored. Its use in
pffulgonce and the voice of Christ, together other parts of the New Testament forbids so
with the work of the Holy Spirit in, his .soul, narrow an interpretation. See 3 John 14. Like
which had so powerful an effect on his moral many other words, it is more or less affected by
Ch. I.] GALATIANS. 21

17 Neither went I up to Jerusalem to them which 17 conferred not with flesh and blood: neither went
were apostles before tiie; but 1 went iuto Arabia, aud I up to Jerusalem to them wiio were apostles belore
returned again uuto Dauia^cuij. me: but 1 went away iuto Arabia; and agaiu I
IS Theu after three years 1 went up to Jerusalem to returned unto Damascus.
see Peter, aud abode with liiui lifteeu days. 18 Theu alter three years I went up to Jerusalem
1 to visit Cephas, aud 'tarried with him fifteeu days.

1 Or, become acquainted with.

the context.' For the meaning of flesh and '


case he was unable during this period to re-
blood' compare Matt. 16:17: "Flesh and ceive instruction from men. As to the length
blood did not reveal it unto thee." The phrase of time passed in Arabia nothing is said. It
appears to be equivalent to weak human could not have been more than three years
nature, viewed probably in contrast with the (see ver. 18), and probably was not less than
divine source from which Paul hud received two. Compare the account n Acts 9 '20-*23.
i
:

his gospel. In his brief sketch of Paul's life, Luke had no


17. Neither went I up to Jerusalem to occasion to speak of this sojourn in Arabia.
them which were apostles before me. And returned again unto Damascus. The
Tiiere some uncertainty about the text in little word 'again' connects his conversion
is

this clause.The Revised Version, Westcott with Damascus, though nothing is said of that
and Hort, and Tischendorf, Eighth Edition, city in th6 previous verses. But we know
have 'went up' (avfiMov) while Ellicott says from the Acts that Paul was in that city dur-
that this reading "seems obviously, a cor- ing three days directly after Christ's appear-
rection, and is rejected by all the best edi- ing to him in the way, and the word again ' '

tors." (1859.) Bathe would not write thus here implies that he left Damascus to go into
at the present time.* By 'those who were Arabia. The two records, therefore, comple-
apostles before me Paul means
' the Twelve, ment and confirm each other, yet without af-
or as many of them as were then at Jerusa- fording the slightest evidence of any intention
lem. As to James, the Lord's brother, noth- to do this.
ing need be said at this point. His position Then, after three years, I went up
18.
will be noticed in explaining ver. 19. But I to Jerusalem. The date from which he
Avent {away) into Arabia. It has been com- reckons the three years' must be the time of
'

monly supposed that Paul went into some conversion, not the time of his return to Da-
part of Arabia not far from Damascus. But mascus. For the former was the great epoch
this is by no means certain, and the opinion of his life, while his return to Damascus was
that he visited the region about Sinai is stren- a comparatively unimportant event. Besides,
uously defended by Ligiitfoot and others. See itwould be difficult to make out any reason-
his general note on "St. Paul's sojourn in Ara- able chronology of the apostle's life if his first
bia." Whether he went into Artibia for the visit toJerusalem took place six years after
purpose of preaching the gospel, or for the his conversion. With this view most inter-
purpose of preparing himself to do this work preters agree for example, Winer, Fritzsche,
more effectually, after a period of solitary Riickert, Usteri, Olshausen, DeWette, Hil-
communion with God, no one can say. In genfeld, Ewald, Wieseler, Hofmann, Meyer,
either case he was doubtless guided by the Ellicott, Lightfoot, Hackett, Cony-
Sieffert,
Spirit of Christ to do as he did and in either ; beare and Howson, and others. This is the

1 The compound Greek word translated conferred' is '


the Armenian and the Ethiopic, while in support of
worthy of particular notiee, though well explained in ini,\9ov he appeals to B I> E F G, the Sy riac, etc. The
Thayer's Lexicon. irpo<r-ava-Ti0r)n.i.. 1. To lay up in documents for one are therefore nearly equal to those
addition.2. Middle, (a) To lay upon one's self in addi- f'^)r the other, and the probabilities of change from one

tion ; to uid^jlake besides, (b) With a dative of the per- to the other by transcribers are indecisive. For a tran-
son to put one's self u/>on another by going lo him i. e., to scriber might unintentionally have written a.i>fi\6ov
commil or betake one's self to another, for the purpose of instead of an-^ASof because the former was so often
consulting him, hence to coniu//, to /ate 0H into counsel used of going to Jerusalem, or he might have written
(.Authorized Version, to confer with). airrtKOov instead of iivr]K9ov because his eye fell at the
2 In support of a.vj)K0ov Tischendorf (Eighth Ed.) ap- moment on the former verb in the next clause.
peals to KAKLP with the Peschito and the Coptic,
22 GALATIANS. [Ch. I.

19 But other of the apostles saw I none, save Jauies 19But other of the apostles saw I none, i save James
the Lord's brother. 20 the Lord's brother. Now touching the things
20 Now the things which I write unto you, behold, wliich I write unto you, behold, before God, I lie
before God, I lie not. 21 not. Then I came into the regions of isyria and
21 Afterwards I came into the regions of Syria and
Cilicia:

1 Or, but only.

first journej' of Paul to Jerusalem, narrated nevertheless, numbered with the apostles in
by Luke in Acts 9 26. : the wider sense. Compare 1 Cor. 15 5. This :

To see (or, visit) Peter. More exactly, explains the supplementary mention of his
to become acquainted with Cephas. Evidently, name. 'James the Lord's brother' was not
Cephas or Peter was a very prominent apostle James, son of Alpheus, as many have sup-
in Jerusalem at that time. According to the posed, but a natural brother of Jesus (nait.
Acts he was the principal figure among the 13:35; Maik6:3)j
a son of Mary, James the Just
apostles bold, outspoken, enterprising, a nat- (Hegesippus in Eusebius 2 23), from birth a:

ural leader of men, and so occupying tiie posi- Nazarite, who only believed after the resur-
tion which he was qualified to fill. Hence, rection of Jesus (1 Cor. 15:7; Acts! 14), but ob- :

although Paul was already established in the tained very high apostolic esteem among the
Christian faith and abundantly able to preach Jewish Christians (i:9), and became the hon-
the gospel, was perfectly natural for him to
it ored bishop of the church at Jerusalem."
desire the acquaintance of Peter, and of any This view is upheld by a majority of mod-
other apostles who might then be in the holy ern scholars; for example, by Olshausen,
city. And abode (tarried) with him fifteen De Wette, Hilgenfeld, Wieseler, Lightfoot,
days. Too short a period for any very Meyer and Sieffert.*
thorough study of Christian truth under the 20. Now the things Avhich I Avrite unto
tuition of Peter. Paul considers this self-evi- you, behold, before God, I lie not. A
dent. The Galatians could not possibly be- solemn asseveration of the truth of what he
lieve that such knowledge
he possessed of
as has just written as to the purpose and result of
the way of life through Christ had been his visit to Jerusalem, as far as they had any
gained in a fortnight from any human teacher. bearing upon the source of his knowledge of
Besides, as we learn from the narrative of the gospel. He evidently makes this solemn
Luke, Paul was "going in and going out at appeal to God for the truth of his words, be-
Jerusalem," during those fifteen days, cause his readers could have no other evidence
" preaching boldly in the nante of the Lord as to the time which he then spent in Jeru-
and he spake and disputed against the Grecian salem, or as to the purpose which led him to
Jews; but they went about to kill him." go there. It looks as if he was aware that
(Acta 9: 28.) Paul did not deem it necessary to the Judaizers in Galatia had represented him
say all this: it wasenough to remind his read- as having received the gospel, at second hand,
ers of his purpose in going up to Jerusalem, it was
from Peter and other apostles, and that
and of the short time which he spent in that show the utter falsity of
desirable for him to
city. their representation. The Greek construction
19. But other of the apostles saw I may be represented by the following version :

none, save James the Lord's brother. " Now as to what I am writing to 3'ou, before
The SeifFert-Meyer Commentary says "Thus God I declare that I lie not." (Ellicott.)
:

thisJames is distinguished from the Compare 2 Tim. 2 14; 4:1.


circle of :

the Twelve, to which Peter belonged; but is, 21. Afterwards I came into the regions

'"Are we to translate 'I saw no other apostle save the other hand, the sense of ct(bov ('other') naturally
James,' or, ' I saw no other apostle, but only .Tames ' ? It links it with fi JTjj ('save'), from which it cannot be
will be seen that the question is not whether ei ^j separated without harshness, and Tfpo- ('other ') car-
('save'), retains its exceptive force or not, for this it ries T<i' ojroirTdAuy (' the apastles') with it. It seems,

seems always to do, but whether the exception refers to then, that James is here called an apostle, though it
the whole clause or to the verb alone. That the latter does not, therefore, follow that he was one of the
is quite a possible construction will appear from Matt, twelve." (Lightfoot.) Se Thayer's " Lexicon," under
12:4; Luke 4 26,27; Gal. 2 16; Rev. 21 : 27. But, on
: : <i Mi, III, c.8,/3.
Ch. I] GALATIANS. 23
22 Aud was unknown by face unto the churches of 22 Cilicia. And I was still unknown by face unto the
Judea which were in Christ: 23 churches of Judea wiiich were in Christ: but ility
2:{ Uut ihey had heard only, That he which persecuted only heard say, He that once perstcuied us now
us in times past now preacheth the faith which ouce preacheth the laitli of which he ouce made havock;
he destroyed. 24 and they glorified (jod in me.
24 And ihey glorified God in me.

of Syria and Cilicia. According to Acts sonal appearance, though he was known to
9 : Paul appears to have sailed from Ce-
30, tliem by report, as the next verse clearly
saroa to Tarsus in Cilicia, from which place states, and as might be safely inferred from
he passed into Syria, preaching in the two the nature of the case. Note the plural
provinces four or five years. See Hackett on there were churches of Judea.
Acts 9 30. : His object in this passage is 23. But they had heard only or. But
simply to direct attention to the regions where they were only hearing. This was a report
he preached as remote from Jeriisalem, where which, during those years of the apostle's life
the apostles then were and he therefore men-
;
of which so little is recorded, they were hear-
tions the provinces m the order of their im- ing again and again. He which {that) per-
portance. "Cilicia,'" says Ewald, " was con- secuted us in times past that is, '
was our
stantly little better than an appendage of persecutor, known as such, distinguished as
Syria." " It is also to be noticed that these such beyond others.' Now preacheth the
two countries are always named in that order faith which once he destroyed. To preach '

(see Acts 15 23, 41), and that order agrees


: faith' maybe ti preach the duty or import-
with the land route from Jerusalem to Cilicia, ance or nature of subjective faith in Christ;
which was the one more commonly taken. but to 'preach the faith' is to preach the gos-
Hence, Paul may have adhered to that order pel, regarded as a message of which faith in
in Gal. 1 21 from the force of association,
: Christ is the central and distinctive truth.
though in this instance he went first to Cilicia, Hackett explains the expression in Acts 6 7 :

and from there made missionary excursions as meaning "the faith-system- that is, the
into Syria." (Hackett on Acts 9 30.) It : gospel"; and Lightfoot remarks, "It is a
should be added that Paul may have preached striking proof of the large space occupied by
at this time more extensively in Syria than in '
in the mind of the infant church, that
faith '

Cilicia, and that of his


in recalling this period it should so soon have pasi^ed into a synonj'm
ministry, the former province, on that account, of the gospel. See Acts 6 7." Compare,
:

tnok precedence in his mind of the latter. also, Jude 3. This appears to be the more
Thus there is no reason to suppose any contra- obvious and correct view, though many deny
diction between this passage and the account that the word faith is used in the New Testa-
given by Luke. The difference between the ment of anything but the subjective act.
two rather establishes our confidence in both, Certainly Paul preached the doctrine of faith
when properly interpreted, for it demonstrates in Christ; and it was those who received this
their independence. doctrine and believed in Christ whom he per-
22. And was unknown by face unto secuted and wasted. So 'the faith' here rep-
the churches of Judea which were in resents, first, the gospel, and, secondly, those
Christ. By 'the churches of Judea' must who received it. The core, the heart of both,
be meant the churches of the province, out- was faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.
side of Jerusalem. For the apostle has before 24. And they glorified God in methat
spoken of his brief sojourn in that city, and is, they found in me occasion to praise God.

Luke describes, in a few powerful words, his "He does not say that they marveled at me,
public efforts there. Many of the churches in they praised me, they were struck with admir-
Jerusalem had, therefore, seen his face and ation, but he attributes all to grace. 'They
heard his voice. But this was not the case glorified God,' he says, 'in me.'" (Chrysoa-
with the churches of the province generally. tom.)
*By face,' or, in respect to face that is, per-
24 GALATIAN3. [Ch. II.

CHAPTEK II.

THEN fourteen years after I went up again to Jeru-


salem with Baruabas, aud took Titus with me also.
1 Then after the space of fourteen years I went
up again to Jerusalem with Barnabas, lakiiig Titus

Ch. 2 : "Again, he claims that the same visit is comprised in two verses: "And the

thing [tliat his knowledge of the gospel is not disciples [at Antioch], every according man
of human but of divine origin] is proved to his ability, determined to send relief unto
affirmatively by the fact that, on his coming the brethren that dwelt in Judea; which also
at a later period into fuller connection with they did, sending it to the elders by the hand
the apostles, his views of truth were sanctioned of Barnabas and Paul." There is nothing in
by them, as perfectly coincident with their this which suggests, even remotely, such trans-
own, though they had been taught personally actions as the apostle describes in the passage
by our Lord (.i:i-6); that he was recognized before us. Still more briefly does Luke notice
by them as standing ia all respects, officially, the fourth visit of Paul: "And when they
on a level with themselves (2:7-10); and that, had landed at Cesarea, he [Paul] went up and
so far from having acted at any time in subor- saluted the church [at Jerusalem], and went
dination to them, or having acknowledged down to Antioch.''
any dependence on them, he had in one in- But it may
be said that the account of Luke
stance opposed his own authority to that of in the fifteenth chapterof the Acts differs very
one of the most eminent among them. (2 11-13.) : greatly from the account here given by Paul.
In the controversy at Antioch, he had not This is true, yet the two accounts relate to the
shrunk from reproving Peter himself publicly same general subject, and may without diflS-
and to his face for having practically aban- culty be seen to complement each other.
doned the great principle of justification by Luke's account is that of a historian desiring
faith alone, inasmuch as he had timidly con- to present a sketch of the proceedings in so far
cealed for a time his real convictions, and acted as tliey aflected all the churches; Paul's
as if Jewish rites must be superadded to faith account is that of a man who desires to estab-
in Christ as essential to salvation. (2:14-21.)" lish a single point, namely, that his teaching

(Hackett.) and authority were admitted to be Christian


1-10. Paul'sGospel and Apostleship and apostolic by the greatest of the Twelve;
Kecognized by James, Peter, and John Studied in this light, the two accounts will be
AT a Convention in Jerusalem, wherein seen to belong together.
THE Duty OF Believing Gentiles toward But from what event is the period of four- '

THE Jewish Law avas Considered. teen years' reckoned? Obviously, from his
1. Then fourteen years after (or, after going up to Jerusalem to make the acquaint-
went up again
the space of fourteen years'^) I ance of Peter, as previously described. (1 :i8.)
to Jerusalem with Barnabas, etc. With This ter'Tninus a quo is suggested by the
which of the apostle's visits to Jerusalem, word 'again,' and must be accepted as the one
mentioned by Luke in the Acts, can this be in Paul's mind, unless there are insuperable
identified? See Acts 9 26; 11
: 30; 15 1,
: : objections to it. The weightiest objections are
seq.; 18: 22; 21 15. Obviously with the third,
: chronological, but they do not appear to be
if similarit3' of purpose is any guide to the decisive. Says Lightfoot: "As the latter visit
truth. For this is the only one of the five, is calculated independently to have taken
except the last, which Luke describes as hav- place a. d. 51, the date of the first visit will
ing to do with questions allied to those men- according to this view be thrown back to
tioned by Paul in the first part of this chapter, about A. D. 38, and that of the conversion to
and this Epistle was certainly written before about A. D. 36, the Jewish mode of reckon-
his last visit to Jerusalem. His first and last ing being adopted." This seems to us a more
visits may therefore be left out of the question, natural interpretation than to suppose that
and our inquiry restricted to the second, third, Paul meant fourteen years after his conver-
and fourth. All that Luke says of the second sion. Compare Ellicott on the passage, with

1 Compare Mark 2:1; Acts 24 : 17.


Ch. II.] GALATIANS. 25
2 And I went up by revelation, and communicated 2 also with me. And I went up by revelation; and I
untu tlieiu that gospel wliicn 1 preucli among the Gen- laid before them tlie gospel which I preach among
tiles,but privately to llieiii which were of reputation, the Gentiles, but privately before them who ' were
lest by any niean.s I should run, or had run, in vain. of repute, lest by any means I should be running,

Cony beare and Howson, chapter vii. 'With of Chri.stian truth and freedom might be
Barnabas' agrees with Luke's narrative in gained lor the public conference. "The pri-
Acts 15: 2, which represents Paul and Barna- vate consultation was a wise precaution to
bas as sent by the church at Antioch to the avoid misunderstanding: the public confer-
apostles and elders at Jerusalem because of ence was a matter of necessity to obtain re-
dissensions in resjtect to the necessity of cir- cognition of the freedom of the Gentile
cumcision to Siilvation. From that nsirrative churches." (Lightfoot.) Compare Acts 15:
it appears that "certain other" members of 4, 6, 12, 2'2. Lest by any means I should

the church were sent in company with Paul run (literally be running), or had run in
ami Barnabas.
vain that is, 'in vain' so far as concerned
And took Titus with me also. The form establishing the freedom of the Gentile Chris-
of expression here employed niai<es Paul him- tians from the law of Moses, without a breach
self the leading person in this company, for in with the' Jewish Christians. For however
some sense lie took with him Barnabas and true and divine his doctrine might be, if it was
Titus also. The latter niaj' have been in- not understood and accepted by such men as
cluded in Luke's " certain other " brethren, James, Peter, and John, who were pillars of
though Paul appears to have wished him to the church at Jerusalem, his work in the
go, perhiips as a representative of heathen present and in the past would be to a great
converts to the truth. For other notices of extent neutralized. Says Pfleiderer: " AVe
him, see 2 Cor. 2 13; 7: 6, 13, seq. 8:6, 16, may imagine in what a painful situation the
: ;

23; 12 18; 2 Tim. 4 10; Titus 1 4.


: : : iipostle found himself. If the party
. .


2. And I went up by revelation that is, zealous for the Law siiould be successful with
ill accordance with 'revelation,' or, perhaps, their demand that the believing Gentiles must
with !i revelation. This revelation may have by circumcision stii>mit to the Jewish Law,
preceded and occasioned the action of the and if it should be confirmed that in this de-
churcli, or it may have followed thiit action, mand they really had the parent church, to-
assuring Paul of his duty to go up to Jerusa- gether with the apostles on their side, the mis-
lem for the purpose contemplated. In either sion to the Gentiles was at an end, and the life-
ca.<e it was natural for the historian Luke to work of the apostle to the heathen was hope-
relate the action of the brethren in respect to less. ... If Paul had, on the other hand,
Paul's visit to Jerusaletn, and equally natural simply ignored the demands of the Judaizers,
for Paul to speak in this letter of the special without coming to any understanding with the
revelation by which he was moved to do the earlier apostles and obtaining their sanction
same thing. And communicated unto of his Gentile mission, with its freedom from
them that gospel which I preach among the Law, he would have severed the connec-
the Gentiles. Paul made to them ' '

that is, tion of his heathen churches with the ])arent
to the Christians at Jerusalem
a careful state- church, and the Gentile church, thus isolated
ment of the gospel which he was preaching from the very first and degraded to a sect,
among the Gentiles. This was a wise proceed- would hardly have been able long to maintain
ing, for he had reason to fear that it liad been its existence. The continuance or the destruc-
more or less misrepresented by his detractors. tion of his life work depended therefore now,
But privately to them which (w/io) were to Pauls mind, on whether he succeeded in
of reputation. This is not to be understood obtaining from the parent church and its lead-
as explaining the previous clause, and deny- ers the acknowledgment of their Christian
ing thiit tliere was any ptiblic conference for fellowship for his Gentile Christians as such."
the saiTie purpose, liut as cttl ling attention to ("The infltience of the Apostle Paul on
certain priviite meetings with the leaders of Christianity," p. 85.) The clause before us is
the church, bj' which their influence in favor a very diflUcult one to interpret. Ellicott gives-
26 GALATIANS. [Ch. II.

3 But neither Titus, who was with me, being a Greek, 3 or had run, in vain. But not even Titus who was
was compelled to be circumcised : with me, being a Greek, was compelled to be cir-
4 And that because of false brethren unawares 4 cuiucised: 'and that because of the false brethren
brought in, who came in privily to spy out our liberty privily brought in, who cume in privily to spy out

I Or, but it was 6 </

the following version: " Lest by any means he was contending; namely, that Gentile sin-
I might be running, or have run, in vain." ners could be saved through faith in Christ
The verb 'run' represents Paul's apostolic without submitting to the Mosaic law. There
ministry under the figure of a race. His worlt is no evidence in this passage, however, or in
was performed as eagerly, and strenuously as the narrative of Luke in the Acts, that any of
the running of an athlete in the race course, the apostles sympathized with those whode-
and at this time he was not without apprehen- manded the circumcision of Titus, though it
sion of losing the prize for which he had is perhaps conceivable that they may have
striven. Unless he could gain the support of advised him to yield the point for the sake of
James, Peter, and John, with most of the peace. Yet we discover no hint of even this,
church at Jerusalem, there was no human and the later weakness of Peter must not be
prospect of maintaining the liberty of the allowed to cast any shadow upon his action at
Gentile churclies, without breaking wholly Jerusalem. In the narrative of Luke he ap-
with the converts from Judaism. Hence his pears as the consistent advocate of admitting
private interviews with these men, as well as Gentiles to Christian fellowship upon their
his public explanation of the gospel which ho acceptance of Christ.
preached. Tlie verb 'run' is here used first 4. And that, because of the false breth-
in the present subjunctive, and in the aorist ren unawares (pjHvily) brought in. This
indicative. Compare 1 The?s. 3 5. "In the difficult verse is best explained by regarding it
:

second clause the change of mood from the as a continuation of the preceding sentence,
subjunctive (rpixw) to the indicative (eSpaiov) from which it should be separated by a comma
is rendered necessary by the change of tense, only. Some interpreters hold that it was
since the consequences of the past were no added in order to show- why the pressure to
longer contingent but inevitable. " (Light- have Titus circumcised was ineifectual. That
foot.) pressure was occasioned by the presence of
3. But neither (not even) Titus, who certain false brethren,who were more Jewish
Avas with me, being a Greek, was com- than Christian, and whose aim and spirit were
pelled to be circumcised. The phrase thoroughly hostile to the principles which
'being a Greek' is to be understood as conces- Paul was there to sustain. And Paul's lan-
sive; 'who was with me, although he was a guage is thought to imply that he might have
Greek,' and therefore of course uncircum- consented to the circumcision of Titus, if it
cised. The language of this sentence, espe- had been called for by the scruples of 'the
cially when taken with what follows, plainly weaker brethren,' instead of the bigotry of
implies that his circumcision was insisted But is this at all probable?
false brethren.
upon so strongly that refusal was difficult. Can we suppose that, after what had occurred
Nor is this surprising. For the question to be at Antioch (Actsisri, seq), Paul would have
practically settled at this time was deemed of consented to pacify weak consciences hy the
vital importance by the Judaistic party as well circumcision of Titus? Or that in this Epistle
as by Paul and Barnabas. Titus, an uncir- to the Galatians he would have intimated the
cumcised Greek, was there associated with possibility of such consent? The circum-
Paul, and nothing could seem more indispens- stances of his visit to Jerusalem and of his
able to the Judaistic spirit than his circum- writing this letter alike forbid the thought.
cision. To see him there as a Greek was like It seems better, therefore, to suppose that the
Haman's seeing Mordecai at the king's gate. apostle added these words to point out the
On the other hand, it was impossible for Paul occasion of this unsuccessful attempt to secure
to consent to his circumcision, even for the
the circumcision of Gentiles the occasion of
sake of peace, for it would be surrendering in this entire transaction, especially as it was
a crucial instance the very principle fOr which illustrated in the case of Titus. Not even
Ch. II.] GALATIANS. 27
wliicb we have ia Christ Jesus, that they might bring our liberty which we have in Christ Jesus, that
us into bondage

Titus, who was present with me (to say noth- but convinced at length by his representations
ing of otiicrs less conspicuous, or of the Gen- that such a concession, at such a time, would
tilfs in general), was compelled by the voice be fatal, they withdrew their counsel, and
of tlie church to be circumcised, and that on gave himtheir support." (Lightloot.) As
account of the false brethren, etc. The whole previously remarked, this conjecture as to the
controversy, he means to say, was occasioned first advice of the apostles has no proper foun-

by these brethren.It was a desire to satisfy dation in the language of Paul or of Luke,
tlieni which led to. the proposal to circumcise and should not be received with any great
Titus. It was their character and aim which confidence. The Greek word (7rapi<TaxTous)
led Paul and Barnabas to withstand them in translated 'brought in privily' might be ren-
Antioch and later in Jerusalem. And it was dered 'insidiously brought in.' Possibly it
precisely these, their spirit and aim, which has the active sense, 'wlio have stolen in.'
weakened their influence in the churcii, and The figure is that of spies, let in or stealing in.
rendered it possible, humanly speaking, for If the word is used here in the passive sense,
tlie friends of Christian liberty to prevail. there must have been Ciiristians in the church
The only other ^iew which suits the connec- at Jerusalem, and perhaps elsewhere, who
tion is this, that the conjunction (5e) should be facilitated the entrance of these false brethren,
translated '
but,' be supplied as knowing more of their views and spirit than
and the ellipsis
follows :
'
but (this came
on account of were openly avo-wed.
to pass)
the false bretliren surreptitiously introduced.' Who came iu privily to $py out our lib-
That is, the entire transaction, embracing the erty which we have in Christ Jesus, that
effort to have Titus circumcised, and the re- they might bring us into bondage. They
linquishment of that effort as impracticable or were Pharisees in disguise, coming into the
wrong, was occasioned by the presence and church to bring it under the law of Moses, as
influence of the false brethren, etc. It is diffi- interpreted by Kabbinic tradition, or, as Paul
cult to decide between this and the preceding often calls it, the law of works. Their interest
interpretation. Either of them is consistent was in the law rather than in the gospel, and
with tlie language and the situation, but nei- they crept into the church for the purpo.se of
ther of them is obvious. The passage is con- upholding ritualistn and resisting the progress
fessedly obscure, and scholars have thus far of spiritual freedom, for the purpose of bring-
labored in vain to reach a perfectly satisfac- ing the Christians back to Judaism. This
tory interpretation of it. finishes the apostle's brief but vigorous char-
"Three ideas," remarks Jowett, "seem to acterization of the extreme Judaists whom he
be struggling for expression in these ambigu- found in the church at Jerusalem, and we
ous clauses [ver. 3-5]: (1) Titus was not cir- have no reason to pronounce it harsh or un-
cumcised; (2) though an attempt was made true in any particular.
by the false brethren to compel him; (3) Notice, on the other hand, his view of the
which as a matter of principle we thought it Christian's state when united with Christ. It
so much the more our duty to resist." "What is one of liberty. His service of Christ springs
part was taken in the discussion by the apos- from love and gratitude, not froin fear. He is
tles of the circumcision? On the whole not under law, as a means of acceptance with
. . .

it seems probable that they recommended St. God, but under grace. Freedom is here '
'

Paul to yield the point, as a charitable conces- freedom from obligation to obey the law of
sion to the prejudices of the Jewish converts; Moses as a means of salvation.*

lOn the use of iva with the future, Light foot says: ponderanee of uncial authority [A B C D E (with X)l,
" It found several times in the New Testament with
is and the improbability of a correction very great, still
the future, and sometimes even with tlie indicative the instances of iVa with the ftiture are so very few,
present, as In 4 17. This, though not a classical usage,
: that we are not justified in saying more than this, that
is justified by similar constructions of dirw?, o(t>pa in the future appears used to convey the idea of ilurntion,
classical writers." Ellicott is more doubtful, saying: or perhaps, rather, of issue, xfiquencf, more distinctly
"Although this reading is confirmed by a decided pre- than the more usual aorist subjuuclive."
28 GALATIANS. [Ch. II.

5 To whom we gave place by subjection, no, not for 5 they might bring us into bondnge; to whom we
an hour; that the truth of tlie gospel might continue gave place in the way of s-ubjeeiion, no, not for
witn you. an hour; that the triitli of the go>pel miglit con-
()Hut of those who seemed to be somewhat, whatso- 6 tinne with you. But from those wlio iwere reputed
ever they were, it makelh no matter to me; (iod ac- to be somewhat (-whatsoever they were, it makeih
cepteth uo man's person for they who seemed to be
: no matter to me: (Jod accepteth not man's person
xomew/uil in coufer>;uce added nothing to me: they, I say, who were of repute imparted nothing to

1 Or, are 2 Or, what they once were.

5. To whom we gave
place by subjec- other apostles because they once enjoyed the
tion, no, not for an hour. A more literal personal teacliiug of Christ and depreciated
rendering would be 'To whom we yielded: Paul because he never had it. God accept-
not ven for an hour by the subjection' de- eth no man's (Revised "Version, not man s)
manded of us.' That the truth of the gos- person. Tlie latter rendering is equivalent to
pel might continue with you. The con- saying No outward differences between men
:

trolling motive in the minds of Paul and Bar- God's treatment of them. He looks at affect
nabas was a desire to have the good news of them as they are and' acce])ts tliem for what
salvation by grace, without the deeds of the they are worth. Wordly distinctions count
I^aw, remain in their possession as a perma- for nothing with him. The circumstance that
nent blessing. James, Peter, and John were acquainted with
6. But of those who seemed to be Jesus and instructed by him, during his

somewhat (r, as in the Revised Version, earthly life, gives them no advantage in the
But from those who were reputed to be some- sight of God over one who had received the
what. Here the sentence breaks off, the apos- same knowledge of Christ b^- revelation. The
tle turning aside from the thought which he expression 'to be somewhat' is not in itself
has begun to express, to make, by way of pa- depreciatory, though it may be made so by
rentliesis, the remarks of the next two clauses, the context. Sieffert imagines that it here be-
and then resuming his opening thought in a trays "a certain irritation in respect to his
different construction. If, then, we learn his adversaries who would not admit his equality
first thought from the last clause of the verse, with the original apostles, as if 'the being
he began to say But from those reputed to somewhat' belonged especially to them." And
:
'

be somewhat notliing was comtnuiiicated to Lightfoot remarks that "the exact shade of
me,' or added to my knowledge of the gos- meaning which it bears must always be de-
'

pel.' Yet he turns away from this thouglit termined \>y the context. Here it is depreci-
when it is but half expressed to remark con- atory, not indeed of the Twelve themselves,
cerning 'those reputed to be somewhat,' but of the extravagant and exclusive claims
whatsoever they were, it maketh no mat- set up for them by the Judaizers."
ter {difference) to me, or, in other words, is For they who seemed, etc. (or, as Re-
a matter of no account to me. Yet another vised Version, They, I say, who were of re-
rendering of this clause is possible: "What pute imparted nothing to me). The order of
they formerly were makes no difference with the Greek words mtikes the pronoun 'me' at
me.'' In this case the word translated for- '
the beginning of the phrase emphatic: 'to
merly (iroTe) is an adverb of time, as it is said
' nie, I say, they who were of repute imparted
to be in every other passage of the New Testa-
nothing' that is, nothing which pertains to
ment where it occurs. If so understood here, the gospel, no knowledge in respect to Christ
Piitil means to say that their former connec- or the waj' of life which I did not have before.
tion with Jesus as his disciples is really of no Indeed, the verb probably signifies to make a
consequence to him, for God does not grant his communication to, and Paul denies thtit they
favor on account of any outward advantage communicated any religious truth to him. It
of one tnati over another. And if so under- seems, therefore, that his communications to
stood, the words clearly imply that the assail- them were so full and clear that they did not
ants of Paul's apostolic authority extolled the make any attempt to instruct him.
' T)r Haclcett translates: "To whom we yielded the almost a tautological repetition of cifa^ec. It is the
Biibjeetiiin {f'^^iiiei' rfi vnorayrj), no, not for an hour,' svhjectiondemanded in this matter of circumcision
and adds: "Our translators make the rji vnorayy which is meant."
Ch. II.] GALATIANS. 29

7 But contrariwise, when they saw that the gospel 7 lue but contrariwise, when they saw that I had been
:

of the uuciruuiuci.-.ioii was coiuniitted unto me, us l/te intrusted with the gospel of tlie uiicircumcisioii,even
gospel of the circ-uiaci.ion icax unto Peter; 8 as Peter with the yux^iel of tlie circumcision ^lor he
8 (For he tlial wrought etteutually in Peter to the who wiouglit for Peter unto the apostleship oi the
apostleship of the circinucisiou, the same was mighty circumcisiou wrought for iiic also uiiio the tientiles)
ill im- toward the Ueuliles; 9 and wlien they perceived the grace that was jjivcu
y And when James, Cephas, and Jolin, who seemed unto me, .lames and Cephas and .lohn, they who
to be pillars, perceived the grace that was given uiilo 1 were reputed to be pillars, gave to me and iiariui-
me, they gave to me and liaruabas the rignl hands of bas the right hands of lelluwsnip, thai we should go
fellowship; that we should yo uuto the heathen, and uuto the Ueutiles, and ihey uniu the circumcisiou;
they unto the circumcision.

It is, perhaps, worthy of notice that the who heard it, and why they did not attempt
Greelv expression liere used (oi SokoOi'tcs) may to instruct him
in regard to the gospel or
signify eitlier 'they wlio were of repute' or concerning his work among the Gentiles.
'
tlioy who are of repute.' Lightfoot greatly God, who had been with Peter, and had
prefers the present tense, thinlving that Paul wrought for liim, to make his ministry
iuis in mind the reputation enjo^'ed by them among the Jews effectual, had wrought as
among the Jewish Christians at the time when manifestly for Paul, to make effectual his jnis-
he wrote this letter. For they were now sion and message to the heathen. Apostolic
lauded by the men who were aiming to per- gifts had been imparted to both in perhaps
vert the gospel among the Galatians as well as equal measure. The Greek word employed is
honored by the church at Jerusalem. In suggestive in the first place of spiritual influ-
either case, the meaning of the passage is per- ence, energizing the inward life, increasing
tinent and forcible, and with either translation faith, zeal, and courage. Indirectly it em-
it agrees with all that is known concerning brtices also the outward signs and workings of
the history of the earl^' churches. that faith, everything, indeed, including mint-
7. But contrariwise, when they saw, by which God wrought for the
cles, apostles,
etc., the remainder of the verse better, as in and made their ministry ettectuul.
tlie Kevised Version, tJiat I had been en- 9. And when James, Cephas, and John,
trusted with the gospel of the uncircumcision who seemed to be pillars, perceived the
even as Peter with the gospel of the circum- grace that w^as given unto me. The Avord
cisiun. Thus Paul resumes his interrupted translated 'saw' in ver. 7, refers, according
tliiiught and states in another form what lie to Ellicott, "to the mental impression pro-
had begun to say in the first clause of the pre- duced, when the nature and success of St.
ceding verse; namely, that instead of correct- Paul's preaching was brought before them " ;

ing his doctrine, or of imparting to him any and the word here translated 'perceived'
new truth, they had seen in his communication refers to "the result of the actual information
to them evidence of his having been commis- they derived from him." Accordingto Light-
sioned to preach the glad tidings to the uncir- foot, the former word "describes the appre-
cumcised, and evidence as clear as they had of hension of the outward tolcens of his commis-
Peter's commission to preach the same glad tid- sion, as evinced by his successful labors; the
ings to the circumcised. For the word 'circum- latter, tha conviction arrived at in consequence,
cision' stands for circumcised, the abstract for thsit the grace of God was witli him. See
the concrete, and the word tincircumcision
'
4 8, 9." They gave to me and Barnabas
'

for uncircumcised, in like manner. the right hands of fellowship. In this verse
8. For he that Avrought effectually in James outranks Peter, though just before Peter
Peter to the apostleship of the circum- is mtide the representative apostle of the cir-
cision, the same was mighty in me cumcision. The prominence of James in this
toward the Gentiles. In this parenthetic is explained
public expression of fellowship
sentence Paul assigns the reason why by the
he was the pastor of the
his fact that
communication was so convincing to those church at Jerusalem, and seems to have pre-

According to the Revised Version the conjunction


'
|
and the best translation of it is I say.' See the .irtlcle
'

(yap) which introduces this clause is not causal but ex- in Thayer's New Testament Le.\icou under the word
plicative; Boise says: "intensive and explicative "; |
yoip.
30 GALATTANS. [Ch. II.

10 Only Ihey would that we should remember the 10 only they would t\id.t we should remember the poor;
poor; the same which I alsu was forward to do. which very thing I was also zealous to do.
11 But when Peter wa^ come to Antioch, I withstood n But when Cejjhas cauie to Antioch, I resisted
him to the face, because he was to be blamed. 12 hiui to the face, because he stood condemned, l-'or
12 For before that certain camefiom James, he did before that certain came from James, he did eat
eat with tlie (jentiles: but when they were come, he with the Gentiles: but when they came, he drew
withdrew and separated himself, fearing them which back and separated himself, fearing them that
were of ihe circumcision.

sided at the public conferences. He would, Kom. 15 : 27 ; 1 Cor. 16 : 1, seq. ; 2 Cor. 7 : 1,


therefore, naturally take precedence of Peter seq. ;
Acts 11 : 30, seq. ; 24 : 17. The desire
and John on this occasion, in the formal recog- of the 'pillar apostles' that Paul and Barna-
nition of Paul as the chief apostle to the bas should remember the poverty of the Jew-
Gentiles. It is also noticeable that, in describ- ish Christians, and render them charitable aid
ing this visit to Jerusalem, Paul does not call in time of need, shows their friendly feeling;
James 'the brother of the Lord,' as he did in for they would not have asked alms from any
describing his first Jerusalem (i:i9); but friends.
visit to
for James, the brother of John, was no longer 11-21. Paul's Ekproof of Peter at
alive, and the only James now prominent and Antioch for his Inconsistent Conduct.
lilcely to be thought of by his readers, Wiis the 11. But when Peter (Cephas) was come
brother of the Lord, known far and wide as (came) to Antioch, I withstood (resisted)
tlie bishop at Jerusalem. Such apparently him to the face, because he was to be
incidental agreement of language with his- blamed (stood condemned) literally, was con-
torical fact is a striking proof of the authen- demned; whether by the course which he had
ticity of this letter. That we should go allowed himself to take, or by the judgment
unto the heathen {Gentiles), and they of the church, we cannot certainly affirm, but

unto the circumcision that is, to the end, are inclined to the former view. Of the fact,
with the understanding tiiat, 'we, to the Gen- however, that he had been and was con-
tiles; and they, to the circumcision.' Whether demned, there can be no doubt, as it is certi-
the full expression would be 'should go,' or fied to us by the inspired apostle. And no one
'should be apostles,' is not perfectly certain. can be rightfully condemned who has not
Of the main thought there can be no doubt. done wrong. The expression, 'resisted him
Paul and Barnabas were to give themselves to the face,' accords with all that is known of
chiefly to work for and among the Gentiles; the openness, the courage, and the decision of

James and Cephas and John were at least, Paul. Peter was, in some respects, the first

for the present to give themselves to Chris- of the apostles, a naturtd leader of men, a
tian labor for the Jews. But the understanding path breaker in evangelical work, and one
(it may be presumed) was not that either the highly esteemed by his brethren. It was,
one or the other should confine himself strictly therefore, no easy task to oppose him face to
to Gentiles, on the one hand, or to Jews, on the face, because his conduct was inconsistent and
other. Neither is it to be supposed that this disastrous. Yet Paul declares that he did
was an arrangement for life. It suited the this, and we have every reason to believe his
existing state of the work, and might be ex- statement strictly true. In the next verse he
pected to continue until new circumstances justifies his declaration that Peter was con-
called for some modification of it. demned as follows
10. Only they would that we should 12. For before that certain came from
remember the poor, the same Avhich I James, he did eat with the Gentiles; but
also was forward to do (which very thing when they were come (came\'^ he with-
I uias also zenlnus to do) that is, Paul, inde- drew (c?rf?<; back) and separated himself,
pendently of their desire or request, was eager fearing them Avhich (that) were of the
to render assistttnce, through the help of Gen- circumcision. By such conduct, whatever
tile churches to the poor saints in Judea. See he maj' have thought of it himself, or what-

1 Several early documents (viz , X B D* F G, with wrong," though supported by X B, a combination which
Origen and a few cursives) read, " but when he (that is, is usually very strong, yet, in the present case, weak-

James) came" ore c fi\6(v butthisisa rcadingwhich
; ened by the Western documents D * G.
' '

even Westcott and llort pronounces "unquestionably


Ch. II.] GALATIANS. 31

13 And tlie other Jews dissembled likewise with 13 were of the circumcision. And the rest of the Jews
hiiu; iiisotuiich thut tJaruabas alsu was curried away dissembled likewise with him; insoiiiucli that even
with their dissiui ilation. Barnabas was carried away with their dissimula-
14 But when I saw that they walked not uprightly 14 tion. But when I saw that they walked not
accoriliiig to the truth of the gospel, I said uuio Peter uprightly according to the truth oi' the gospel, I
before tkem all, If thou, being a Jew, livest after tlie said uulo Cephas before thvm all, If thou, beiug

ever the people may have said of it, Peter example, added to the urgency of their kins-
was eondenined. The expression 'certain men from the mother church, led tlie other
from James may signify that the persons in
' Christian Jews of Antioch to si![)arate them-
question were sent by him to Antioch, or that selves from the Gentiles, though they, as well
they came from the church of which he was as Peter, did this against theii better judg-
the bishop, and professed to represent his ment. There is no evidence that Peter solic-
opinion. But from all we know of his steadi- ited them to take this course. It is even pos-
ness of mind, it would be unjust to suspect sible that he yielded with many a protest to
him of authorizing the course pursued by these But that he yielded at
the Judaizing faction.
Judaists. 'Did eat with the Gentiles' that
all, was a fact that could be used with tremen-

is to say, was eating with them, or was in thedous effect by zealots for the law, and for a
habit of eating with them the verb being in
; brief period it seemed as if a great wave of
the imperfect tense. The Greek verbs ren- Jewish ritualism were about to sweep away
dered, 'drew back and separated himself,' de- the old landmarks of the church, as if the
form of godliness were to take the place of its
scribe his action in progress and at completion.
lie seems to have broken off his free inter- power, and pretense get the upper hand of
course with Gentiles somewhat gradually and sincerit}'. The second part of the verse shows
how powerful was the Judaistic current.
reluctantly, but at last the separation was the
same as that between ordinary Jews and Gen- 'Even Barnabas,' the fast friend tmd enlight-
tiles. Yet observe that he did not do this ofened companion of Paul, was carried away by
Ills own accord he did it rather through his it. He was the last man to be moved in that
fear of losing the good will and confidence ofdirection, and the circumstance that even he
the Jewish brethren, represented by those was swept along with the rest, though reluct-
who hiid come there from Jerusalem, and antly, shows that a crisis had been reached in
who doubtless had said a great deal about the the church. But by the good providence of
Jewish manner of life for which James is God there was on the ground a Hebrew of '

reported to have been conspicuous. " It is


the Hebrews' whose grasp of principles, and
remarkable," says Prof. Jowett, "and may foresight of consequences, and courage in
be considered as a proof of the truth of the asserting the truth, were equal to the emer-
history, that his conduct, however unintelli- gency. It was for him to wrest the victory
gible, is in keeping witii Peter's character. from those who must have thought themselves
"We recognize in it the lineaments of him who to be already in full possession of the field.
confessed Christ first, and
denied him;
first 14. But when I saw
that they walked
who began by refusing that Christ should not uprightly according to the truth of
wash his feet, and then said, "not my feet the gospel, I said unto Peter (Cephas)
only, but my hands and my head" ; who cut before them all. Lightfoot explains the
off the ear of the servant of the high priest, firstpart of this verse by saying, "they di-
when they came to tsike Jesus, and then for- verge from the straight path of the gospel
sook him and fled. Boldness and timidity truth." "Thepreposition translated 'accord-
first boldness, then timidity
were the char- ing to' here denotes not the goal to be
(np'oi)

acteristics of his nature." But the matter did attained, but the line of direction to be ob-
not end with Peter's withdrawal. Others served." The reasons why Paul took occa-
followed his example. sion to reprove Peter before the whole church
13. And the other Jews (the rest of the were doubtless these: that Peter's offense was
Jews) dissembled likewise with him : in- in some sense public, that its bad influence
somuch that Barnabas also (or, even could be averted in no other way, and that
Jinrnnbns) was carried away with their many had dissembled with him and needed
dissimulation. Thus the weight of Peter's reproof as well as he. Both Jews and Gentiles
32 GALATIANS. [Ch. II.

manner of Gentiles, and not as do the Jews, why com- a Jew, livest as do the Gentiles, and not as do the
pellest thou the Oeiililes to live as do ihe Jews? Jews, how compellest thou the Gentiles to live
15 We uho are Jews by nature, and not sinners of 15 as do the Jews? We being Jews by nature, and
the Gentiles, 16 not sinners of the Gentiles, yet knowing that a
16 Knowing that a man is not justified by the works man is not justified by 'the works of the law, but
of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Ghrist, even we through faith in Jesus Christ, even we believetl on
have believed in j'eMis Christ, that we might bejustitied Christ Jesus, that we might be justified by faith in
by the faith ol Christ, and not by the works of the law; Christ, and not by the works of the law: because
for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified. by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.

1 Or, works of law.

must be made to see that not even this great when they heard these words and recollected
apostle'sexample could be safely followed Peter's visit to Cornelius, his account of the
when it was inconsistent with the gospel. If sheet let down from heaven, his speech at the
the remedy applied by Paul was drastic, it so-ciiUed council, and his intercourse with
was without doubt needed tind effectual. Hav- the Gentile converts before their own arrival
ing the consciences of believing Jews and in Perhaps they began at that
Antioch.
Gentiles in Antioch on his side, a public moment to see that they had not counted the
method of dealing with the matter was safe cost when they undertook to overturn Paul's
and wise; at any rate, it was in keeping with work in Antioch. His bold and strong words
his own character as revealed to us by the must at least have gone to the conscience of
New Testament. Peter. But Peter was of so true and no~ble a
We now come to the address itself, w^hich spirit that he could bear reproof tmd listen to
appears to be rehearsed by the apostle In a argument as well.
condensed form, but with substantial accu- After this argumentum ad /lominem, Paul
racy'. A few years, it is true (possibly six or courteously associates himself with Peter,
seven), had passed since he nitide it, but the when it would have been just as easy for him
occasion was so exigent and the effect of his to have continued his address in the second
words so important that they must have been person singular. A little below, with the
often recalled by him with thankfulness to same spirit of courtesy, he passes to the first
God for the grace which enabled him to speak person singular, (ver. is.)
them. Moreover, we are justified in believing 15-16. We who are (literally, we being)
that the Spirit of inspiration co-operated with Jews by nature, and not sinners of the
natural circumstances in making his memory Gentiles, (yet) knowing that a man is not
faitliful. If thou, being a Jew, livest after justified by the works of the law, but
the manner of the Gentiles, and not as (save) by [through) faith in Jesus Christ,
do the JcAvs, why compellest thou the even we believed in Jesus Christ, that
Gentiles to live as do the Jcavs? This Ave might be justified by the faith of (in)
direct appeal to the inconsistencj' of Peter's Christ, and not by the Avorks of the law :
conduct could only be met by confessing that for (hecavse) by the works of the laAV no
he had done wrong in living as do the Gen- flesh shall be justified. The first clause is
tiles, or by confessing that he was wrong in concessive: 'Although we were Jews by
refusing to live thus, when his refusal would birth, and not heathen-born sinners'; the
sanction the efforts of the Judaizing party, second is causal, 'yet because we knew that a
and would by so much tend to compel the man is not justified by the works of the law,
Gentile believers to live as Jews, for the sake but only through faith the third is declara-
'
;

of unity and peace. When Paul speaks of tive, 'even we believed on Christ Jesus' the ;

Peter as living (present tense) like the Gen- fourth is fintil, to the end 'that we might be
tiles, he refers to his recent and well-known justified by the faith in Christ, and not by the

]iractice and he is able to do this with all the works of the law
;
and the fifth confirmatory,
'
;

more confidence because the principles of 'because by the works of the law shall no
Peter would require him to live "ethnically" flesh (or, sinful man) be justified.' There
whenever his apostolic work called for it. It seems at first sight to be some needless repeti-
is easy to imagine the consternation which tion in this verse, but, strictly speaking, there
stole into the hearts of 'certain from James,' is none; the fullness of statement in every
Ch. IL] GALATIANS.
17 But if, while we set-k to be justified by Christ, we 17 But if, while we sought to be ju.stified in Christ, we
ourselves also are found sinners, is therefore Christ the ourselves also were louiul sinners, is Christ a luin-
minister of sin? God forbid. 18 ister of sin? (iod forbid. For if I build up again
IS l'"()r if I build again the things which I destroyed, those things which 1 destroyed, I prove myself a
1 make myself a transgressor. 19 transgressor. For 1 through i
the law died uulo
Ij For 1 through the law am dead to the law, that 1
might live unto (jod.

clause is empliatic. It is, however, to be ob- tified by Christ, without the works of the law,
served that the last sentence, 'because by the we also ourselves, as these sticklers for the law
deeds of the law shall no flesh be justified," is affirm,were found in the way of sin and on a
inserted as an Old Testament proof of the pre- plane with tlie Gentiles, for then it would
ceding clause. It is probably a free citation follow that Christ is 'a minister' and pro-
of P.-i. 143 2, which reads tlius:
: "And enter moter of sin; a conclusion abhorrent to every
not into judgment with thy servant; for in believer ! We
did not then break the law and
tliy siglit shall no man living be justified." commit sin by looking to Christ alone for
Paul introduces the words, by the deeds of ' acceptance with God, although in doing this
the law,' on the assumption that when God is we ceased to keep the law as a means of justi-
said in the Old Testament to 'enter into judg- fication. Just the opposite of this is true.
ment' with any one, the law must be the For if I build (w^;) again the things which
standard, obedience to the whole law the only I destroyed, I make (prove) myself a
ground of justification, and disobedience to transgressor. In this verse the apostle sub-
any i)art of it a suflScient ground for condem- stitutes, with great delicacy of feeling, the
nation. To keep tlie law is to keep the whole first person singular for the first person plural.

of it; to break the law is to disobeyany com- For the act supposed was precisely that for
mand of it. It may also be remarked that the which Peter stood condemned. "What he had
meaning of the ajtostie in the sentence, 'a been doing by his example was a building up
man not justified by the works of the law,
is again of legal observances, which he had be-
but (eic pirj) tlirough faith,' is correctly repre- fore destroyed by testifying that they were no
sented in English by translating the Greek longer obligatory on Christians as the ground
(eav fii?, seq. ) 'but only' through faith in of justification, and were means of condemna-
Jesus Christ. The whole statement may then tion rather than of justification. The true pur-
be reproduced as'Although we pose of the law was to convitice men of sin and
follows:
were Jews by birth, and not heathen-born drive them away from itself to Christ. Hence
sinners, yet because we knew that a man is those who turn back to legal works as a condi-
not justified by the works of the law, but only tion of forgiveness and life, transgress the very
through faith in Jesus Christ, even we, I say, nature and purpose of the law. This thought
believed on Christ Jesus, in order that we is explained and justified by the next verse.
miglit be justified by faith in Christ, and not Apart from that verse, we might be in doubt
by works which the law requires; bectiuse by respecting the import of this, but with it the
the works of the law (as it is written) shall no meaning of this is perfectly clear.
flesh be justified.' Compare Kom. 3 20. Thus 19. For I through the law am dead
:

Paul assumes, as a fact which Peter will admit, (died) to the law, that I might live unto
that both of them had turned away in despair God. The etnphatic words arc; 'through the
from legal works as a condition of acceptance law.' "It was the law itself, doing its ap-
with God, and had put their trust in Chri.st pointed work, by which I was slain to the
alone.
Let us now see what use he makes of law that is, driven from it and made utterly
tiiis unquestiornxble fact. dead to it as a means of salvation. It refused
17. But if, while we seek (sought) to be me hope; it said, 'To rely uptm me is to
justified by (in) Christ, we ourselves also perish; thou hast sinned, and the soul that
are (ve.re) found sinners, is therefore sinneth shall die; trust me not, but flee to the
Christ the {a) minister of sin? God for- mercy of God in Christ.' Thus by the proper
bid ! It cannot for moment be supjiosed, tir- action of the law I was made to relinquish all
a,

gues Paul, tliatin and by our seeking to be jus- my confidence in it as a means of justification
C
34 GALATIANS. [Ch. II.

20 1 am crucified with Clirist: nevertheless I live; 20 1the law, that I might live unto God. I have heen
yet not i, but ( hiist liveth in lue: and the life which crucified with Christ; and it is no longer 1 that
1 now live in the flesh I live by ihe taith of the Son of live, but Christ live:li in me: and that lijt which I
God, who loved me, and gave liim^elf for me. now live in the tiesh 1 live in faith, Ifiefailh wliich
is iu the Son of Ood, who loved me, and gave hini-

before God. By own impulsion


I turned in me, that they n.ay be perfected into one."
its

from it have any lite-relation to (John 17: 23.) There must be something very
and ceased to
it, but in this very act I turned to Christ in real and wonderful to justify such language:
faith, to the end that I might enter upon a a union of Christ witii his people which can
new and true life, a life which is closely re- only be described by saying that his life per-
lated to God, is sustained by his grace, and is vades their life, giving it power and purity
consecrated to his service." This appears to and peace not its own. And the life which
be the import of the apostle's language in the I now live in the flesh. The word 'flesh'
present verse, and it fully explains and con- is here equivalent to body, and life in the
firms the preceding verse. body is conceived to be a life exposed to weak-
Paul has now reached the core of the gospel, ness and temptation a life of toil, of conflict,
as understood and preached by him and so and perhaps of persecution a life which will
;
he must needs dwell upon it a moment longer. fail of the highest good, unless it be to him
For surely this, if anything, will reach the who is empowered by the Divine Spirit in the
heart of his brother Cephas, and prevail upon inner man, and looks " not at the things which
hini'to give up the attempt to build again are seen, but at the things which are not seen."
what he has once destroyed. (2 Cor. 4 18.) Such a mall was the apostlc. He:

20. 1 am {have been) crucified with Christ. was in the flesh, but not the servant of it; for
Nothing is deeper in the writings of Paul than he said, "I buftet my body, and bring it into
'his conception of the believer's union with bondage: lest by any means, after that I have

Christ. He dies to the law and to sin by trust- preached to others, I myself should be re-
ing in Christ. His legal standing and his jected." (iCor.9:27.) I livc by (yh) the faith
spiritual condition are reversed in a moment of (ivhich is in) the Son of (liod, who loved
by that act and the union which depends upon me, and gave himself (?<7:>) for me. Faith
it. In the preceding verse, and also in this, was the element in which Paul was living and
the reference is chiefly to the former, yet the breathing, and that faith had for its object the
latter isdoubtless involved. Paul's crucifixion Son of God. In him the apostle trusted, and
with Christ was first realized at his conver- not in his own righteousness; in the Son of
sion, but the continuance of that crucifixion God, and not in legal observances, or holy
had been experienced by him all along from resolutions, or perfected character. He ex-
that hour to the present. Essentially the same pected salvation as a free gift through a Divine
thought is repeated by the apostle in his letter Saviour. The last clause, 'who loved me and
to the Romans; "Knowing this, that our old gave himself up for me,' is a pathetic and
man was crucified with him, that tl;e body of grateful recognition of Christ's voluntary
sin might be done away, that so we should no death for the redemption of sinners, and of
longer live in bondage to sin for he that hath the holy impulse which moved him to so groat
;

(lied is .justified from sin." (6:6.) Compare also a sacrifice. At the same time it shows how
Rom. G: 8; Gal. 5: 24; 6: 14: Col. 2: 20, and tender and personal was the relation of Jesus
Rom 6:4; Col. 2: 12. Translate: And it is to the apostle, ifwe accept the apostle's vii-w
no longer I that live, but Christ liveth in me. of that relation. Blessed must this sorely-tried
That is, I have no longer a separate existence, servant of Christ have been when he uttered
for Christ is the life of my life. He is its source, this sentence, and believed that it would bo as
its animating principle, its object. " For to dear to the heart of Peter as to his own I And
me to live is Christ." (Phii. i :2i.) "When
having said this, he closes with a declaration
Christ, who is our life, shall be manifested," and a reason for it; both of which relate to
etc. (Col. 3:4.) "I am the vine, ye are the the controversy about Jewish observances aa a
branches." (Johni5:5.) " I in them, and thou condition of acceptance with God.
Ch. IL] GALATIANS. 35

21 I do not frustrate the grace of (iod for if right-


: I 21 self up for me. I do not make void the grace of
edusuess come by the law, then (Jhiist is dead in vain. bod for if righteousness is through ' the law, then
:

I
Christ died for nought.

21. I do not frustrate (make void) the cause it seems incompatible with the highest
grace of God asdo those who insist upon apostolic inspiration. To reconcile this epi-
obedience to the Jewish Law as a condition sode in Peter's life with the Papal theory of
of salvation; for if righteousness come by his being the vicar of Christ on earth seems
(i. tkroiKjh) the law, then Christ is dead impoissible, but a few things may be said of its
in vain [died for nought). Evidently Paul bearing on the doctrine of apostolical inspira-
assumes that a falling back upon legal works tion.
for justification or righteousness is radically First, the circumstance may be recalled,
inconsistent with justification through faith in that in the articles of pacification, adopted at
Christ. It must be one thing or the other: a Jerusalem a few weeks before, nothing was
combination of the two is out of the question. said in respect to the ii^tercourse of Jewish
If a man can be justified by the law, he needs converts with Gentiles. The Holy Spirit
no Saviour. If he needs Christ at all, it is seems to 'have waited for certain events to
because he is condemed by the law. Observe take place before revealing to Jewish believ-
how closely the death of Christ and the grace ers the impropriety and danger to Christian
of God are here connected. To reject one is life which a permanent observance of the
to reject tiie other. Indeed, the death of Christ Mosaic ritual involved. He foresaw that the
is esteemed by the apostle the grandest expres- destruction of the temple would at no distant
sion of God's grace, and anything which pro- day fill their minds with serious questions as
claims this death unnecessary is a thorough to the duty or possibility of preserving intact
denial of God's grace in human salvation. their ancestral customs. And there is reason
There is much reason to believe that Peter to suppose that not much was given
instruction
was convinced of his mistake by this address them respecting the evils of their caste system
of Paul, and that he never fell into the same of religious life till they were providentially
again. And, though we may regret his timid qualified to receive it kindly. Even Paul,
yielding to Jewish zealots at thi^ time, we who was perfectly aware of the danger of
cannot be too thankful that Paul was on the clinging to legal rites as a condition of accept-
ground to maintain the truth in its purity. ance with God, was willing to live as a Jew
The narrative has always been troublesome with Jews for the sake of gaining them for
to Roman Catholics, because it shows so clearly Christ. He knew, indeed, as did Peter and
the weakness of Peter and his being subject to Barnabas also, that it was right for Jews to
correction by Paul. To talk of him as prince mingle freelj' with Gentiles in the service of
of the apostles and head of all the church in Jesus, but it does not appear that he or they
presence of this piece of history requires vast had been led by the Spirit of God to protest
assurance. Hence, this is by no nieansa favor- against the course of James and of many
ite passage with Roman Catholic writers, and others in keeping the law. This must be duly
.eonie of them have made desperate attempts considered in forming an estimate of Peter's
to discover in it some other meaning than it conduct.
obviously contains. But its meaning is indu- Secondly, Peter is not represented as saying
bitable. Peter did in this case, as once before, anything in justification of his conduct, or
yield to fear, and do what he could not ap- against free social intercourse on the part f)f

prove. This must be conceded, though with Jews with Gentiles. He seems to have
yielded
reluctance, by Romanist and Protestant: with to pressure in so far as his action was con-
rcluctan e by the Romanist, because it dis- cerned, but he may have hoped to gain the
agrees with his doctrine of the rectoral Judaizers by temporary concessions. He may
supremacy of Peter in the college of the apos- have said to them: "I go with you, becau.se
tles and in the whole militant church; and my mission isto you rather than to the Gen-
with reluctance by the Protestant also, be- tiles, but I do not admit the correctness of
36 GALATIANS. [Ch. III.

CHAPTER III.
FOOLISH Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that O foolish Galatians, who did bewitch you, before
ye bhoiild not obey the truth, before whose eyes whose eyes Jesus Christ was openly set lorth cruci-
Jesus Christ halh beeu evidently set lorth, crucitied
among you ?

your concede that it was wrong


position, or OF God through Faith in Christ Cruci-
for me and I expect that
to eat with Gentiles ; fied. (1-5.*)
"Having thus, in the first two
you will soon look at the matter as I do!" chapters, vindicated his authority as an apos-
Such a course may have seemed to Cephas other words, shown that the gospel
tle, or, in

almost necessary, at least for a time, and the which he preached must be true, because he
far-reaching consequences of it may have was taught it by direct revelation, Paul pro-
been overlooked by him until Paul brought ceeds in the next place to argue the truth of
them to mind. from a consideration of the system,
this gospel,
Thirdly, from this instance, as well as from both as viewed in itself and as attested by the
the liistory of the ancient prophets in Israel, it appropriate external marks of its divine char-
is evident that divine inspiration was never acter. A summary of the argument as devel-
meant to insure a perfect life to its possessor. oped connection is the following: The
in this
There is but one such life described in the New gratuitous system of justification as contained
Testament, and none in the Old.Somewhere, in the gospel must be the true one in opposi-
then, a line must be drawn between teaching tion to that of merit or works; first, because
and conduct, and it must be conceded that a the Holy Spirit accompanies its reception as a
hian may be enabled to deliver a true message witness that those who embrace it are the chil-
from God, though his knowledge and his life dren of God (ver. 2-4) sccond, bccausc it has
;

are imperfect. been sanctioned by miracles (ver. 5) third, be- ;

Fourthly, worth while to remember


it is cause it accords with the manner in which
that God's providence is a factor of history. Abraham was justified (ver. 6, 7) fourth, be- ;

A man was then present in Antioch by the cause it fulfills the predictions of the Old Tes-
will of God who could meet the emergency in tament, which declare that Christ was to be
such a way that even Peter's dissimulation the medium through which spiritual blessing
was overruled for good. Humanly consid- should be conferred on mankind (ver. 8. 9) fifth, ;

ered, it was just the place and the time for this because it iigrees with the entire teaching of
occurrence. A great and hitherto unsettled the Old Testament in regard to the justifying
question could now be answered in such a power of faith (ver. ii); and, finally, because it

manner as to satisfy the Gentiles, if not the is the only system adapted to men as sinners."
Jews. It was thus answered in strict agree- "In confirmation of this last point, it is
ment with the spirit and genius of Christi- shown that on the ground of obedience justifi-

anity. If the divine hand ever discernible


is catiim is because the obedience
impossible,
in human affairs, it is in this sad but important which the law demands must be perfect; and
transaction at Antioch. And it was a trans- as no individual renders this, it is evident that
action, the recital of which could not fail to as many asare of the law are under the curse.
impress upon the Galatians the high authority Under these circumstances, therefore, Christ
of Paul as a Christian teacher, and the per- gave himself as a ransom to redeem us from
fect clearness and truth of his gospel. It intro- the curse of the law, being made himself a
duced, therefore, in a most effective manner curse for us, and thus providing a way of sal-
the argument which he was about to make in vation which is applicable to all. Gentiles as
support of the doctrine of salvation by the well as Jews, on condition of faith. (Ter. lo,

grace of God through faith in Christ. VM4.)" (Hackett.)


1. O foolish Galatians, who hath be>
witched yoii, etc. By these words Paul
Ch. 3 : In support of his gospel, that justifi- resumes his direct appeal to the Galatians.
cation is of grace through faith, Paul now Having vindicated his claim to be an apostle,
appeals instructed by Christ himself through revela-
1. To THEIR Experience of the Grace tion, and recognized as their peer by the elder
Ch. III.] GALATIANS. 37

2 Tliis only would I learn of you, Received ye the 2 fied? This only would I learn from you, Received ye
Spirit by ihe works of llie law, or by the hearing of the t?pirit by the works of the law, or by the - he;u-
i

lailh? 3 iug of faith? Are ye. so foolish? haviug begun iu


;{Are ye so f<K)lish? having begun in the Spirit, are
ye now made perl'eci by ihu heah'/
1 Or, worlu of law 'i Or, meseage.

apostles, he brought, by the repetition of Spirit by {the) works of {the) law or by


is

hiii protestand argument against Peter's {the) hearing of faith? The preposition
course ia Antioch, to tlie deepest ground of translated 'by' signifies out of, as a result
his opposition to the Judaislic error, wliicli is, of, or, by means of. In this place it is prop-
that it nullifies the grace of God by virtually erly rendered 'by,' in the sense of, by means
pronouncing Ciirist's death unnecessary. So of. The noun wliich is translated 'hearing'
irrational does this appear to the deeply is also used to denote organ of hearing, or ear,
moved apostle, that he cannot refrain from and what is heard, whether it be instruction
great plainness of speech in addressing the or rumor. Hence, it is an open question
Gulatians. Their course suggests the influ- whether Paul describes them as having re-
ence of such fascination as is popularly attrib- ceived the Holy Spirit by hearkening to the
uted to "the evil eye." It is a surprising, good news with faith, t)r by means of preach-
unaccountable course, especially when the ing, which' related to faith as the condition of
apostle recalls the clearness with which he justification. In either case the emphasis falls
had portrayed to them the atoning death of upon faith as contrasted with works. And as
Clu-ist.i he appeals to their own experience, it is almost
Before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath certain that the works of the Holy Spirit had
been evidently (was openly) set forth cru- been so marked at the time of their conver-
cified? that is, was portrayed as crucified. sion and, probably, afterward as to be
The word translated 'was openly set forth' easily perceived by them and distinguished
(n-poevpo<f>r|)Is used to remind them of the from everything else in their inner life. It is
clear and vivid manner in which Paul had likewise probable that many of them had
delineated the death of Christ; and the word been endowed with special gifts by the Spirit
'crucified' {eaTa.vpmit.tvot], placed for the sake of of God, as those of prophecy, speaking with
emphasis at the end of the sentence, is used tongues, or miracles. Of course, the apostle
to recall the dreadful character of that death. conceives of but one answer as possible to the
The language of this clause is interesting as question proposed. They had received the
giving a hint of the "matter and manner" of Spirit by listening with faith to the gospel of
Paul's preaching. In Galatia, as well as in Christ. This was certain to him, and, in his
Corinth, the substance of his message was, opinion, certain to them as well.
'Jesus Christ, and him crucified.' See 1 Cor. 3. Are ye so foolish? Namelj", as the
1 :2.3, seq. And his manner, it cannot be next question is about to suggest. In the New
doubted, was bold, earnest, impassioned, and Testament, the adverb 'so' (oOtw?) often points
often tender, (xcu-to-.n.) The question of this to what follows. Having begun in the
verse, indicating so much surprise and sorrow, Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the
is followed by other questi(ms which show the flesh? Compare 2 Cor. 8:6; Phil. 1 6. :

reasons for his surprise at the irrationality of Perhaps the middle sense of the verb is pref-
their conduct. They V)ring out the inconsist- erable, 'Are ye now making an end in the
ency and folly of it in striking language. flesh ? " Having made a beginning in Chris- '

2. This only would I learn o( (from) tianity, are ye now making an end in Juda-
you. As if the answer to the single question ism ? " (Boise.) One becomes a Christian,
lie was about to propose would be conclusive not by natural birth, but by spiritual birth,
of the whole matter. Received ye the "That which isborn of the flesh is flesh, and that

The words 'that ye should not otiey the truth' I were added from Gal. 5 7. They are omitted by
:

must, be rejected as fomiing no part of the original Tischendorf, Tregelles, Westcott and Hort, and the
text. They are wanlin<; i ii X -^ B D ' F" <^1 P, <''nd some Revised Version,
of the best cursives. LIghlfoot conjectures that they |
38 GALATIANS. [Ch. III.
4 Have ye suffered so many thiugs in vain ? if it be 4 the Spirit,' are ye now perfected in the flesh? Pid
yet in vain. ye many things in vain ? if it l)e indeed in
sutl'oi- so
5 He therefore that ministereth to you the Spirit, 5 vain. He
therefore who supplieth to you the .spirit,
and workelh miracles among you, doth he it by the and worketh - miracles 3 among you/ilortfi he it by
works ot the law, or by the hearing of faith ? * the works of the law, or by the'* hearing of faith?

1 Or, do ye now make an end in the flcah J 2 Gr. powers 3 Or, in 4 Or. morAs o/ law 5 Oi-, j

which is born of the Spirit is spirit." (John 3 :


6.; half-hidden hope that the fruit of their suffer-
'Illthe Spirit' refers to the element in which ings will not be lost by their actual adopti^in
the new life of the Christian has its beginning of the Judaistic error. Paul leaves the path
now, as well as in the tirst age. But the open to a return to the way of life which they
Jewish which the Galatians were urged had formerh' entered with joy in the Lord. The
rites,

to observe as necessary to salvation, were meaning of this clause is admitted to be ob-


carnal ordinances, intended to be superseded scure, but that which we have stated is more
by the heart worship of a more spiritual econ- obvious than any other, and it agrees witli the
omy. course cf thought in this pai't of the apostle's
4. Have ye suffered so many things in argument. Lightfoot's note is striking.^

vain? or, according to the Kevised Version, 5. He therefore that ministereth to you
''Did ye suffer?' etc. Just what sufferings the Spirit, or that siipplieth to t/ou the Spirit.
for Christ's sake these Galatian disciples may The now returns to the thought of
apostle
have borne we do not know. But the perti- ver. 2 and from which he has deviated for
3,

nency' and force of the apostle's question de- an instant that he might refer to their heroic
pend upon their severity. Light sufterings sufterings on account of fidelity to the truth.
would not have suggested such an appeal. But even that deviation was merely formal,
Their liberty in Christ must have been pur- if we suppose that he regarded, and expected
chased at no small cost of afflictions. And his readers to regard, their endurance of suf-
the apostle calls upon them to consider the ferings as a fruit of the Spirit's work in their
question whether they are ready to look upon hearts, giving them strength to bear affliction
their endurance of wrong in the past as use- with joy. According to tiiis view, the con-
less. Had
they been following a "will o' the junction 'therefore' is resumptive, or, per-
wisp" into all manner of distress ever since haps more exactly, as EUicott remarks of the
they received the gospel and put their trust in original word (ovi/), '^ continuative and retro-
Christ? The pertinenceof thisquestion would spective rather than illative." Every inter-
be more obvious still if a large part of their preterknows that in the Gospel of John the
sufferings had been due to Jewish enmit3' same word (ovv) is frequently translated 'then'

against Christians an enmity which the^' instead of 'therefore,' because the sentences
would not have provoked if they had kept introduced by it do not appear to be in any
the Jewish law. obvious sense inferences from that which pre-
Many give to the word translated 'have cedes them. So here the sense would be
suffered'the meaning ''have experienced,' clearly expressed by translating: 'He then
and understand 'many things' to signify who is supplying to you the Sjiirit,' etc. And
blessings. This interpretation suits the con- worketh miracles among you (or, in you).
text perfectly and the verb certainly has
; The ambiguity of the last words cannot be
this meaning sometimes in classical Greek. certainly removed by anything in the preced-
But, aside from this passage, it never has that ing language or in the context. They may
meaning in the New Testament, and hence signify' 'in you' or 'among you,' though
we liesitate to fall back upon it here. If it there is a slight presumption in favor of the

be yet (or, indeed) in vain 'As your atti- former, as giving the ordinary meaning of
tude toward Judaism seems now to affirm the preposition, if the sense of the passage
!
'

Yet there is also suggested by this clause a thus rendered is equally satisfactory. For

1
If it be really in vain.' It is hard to believe this
'
;
speaker. The alternative rendering, ' If it is onfy in

the apostle hopes better things of his converts. Ei yt vain, and not worse than in vain,' secais harsh and
leaves a loophole for doubt, and koI widens this, imply- improbable.
ing an unwillingness to believe on the part of the
Ch. III.] GALATIANS. 39

6 Even as Abraham believed God, and it was ac- 6 Even as Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned
counleU lo him for righiemisuess. 7 unto him for righteousness. ' Know therefore that
7 Know ye therefore that they which are of fuith, they who are of faith, the same are sons of Abraham.
the same are the children of Abraham.

1 Or, Te percev

'
worketh miracles in you,' see 1 Cor. 12: quotation is borrowed from the Septuagint

28 and Mutt. 14 2. Thus understood,


: Version of Gen. 15 6, wliich, however, fairly
:

Paul must refer to spiritual gifts, such as reproduces the sense of tlie Hebrew original.
speaking with tongues, interpretation of That original is translated in the Canterbury
tongues, discerning of spirits, propheysing, lievision : "And he believed in the Lord, and
and tlie like, which were bestowed by the he counted it to him for rigiiteousiiess." The
Holy Spirit according to his own will. Yet same passage is quoted by the apostle in his
bodily cures of an extraordinary character in Epistle to the Romans (< sj with the important
;

answer to praj'er might perhai)S be described in comment: "Now to him that worketh, the
tliese terms. If, however, the versions are reward is not reckoned as of grace, but as of
correct in translating the words 'among you,' debt. But to him that worketh not, but be-
th.s principal reference may
be to miracles in lieveth on him that justifieth the ungodly,
the w(rld of sense, though others would not his faith is reckoned for righteousness."
of necessity be e.xcluded. At all events, the (ver. 4and5.) Clearly, then, according to Paul,
apostle here appeals to miracles as unques- Abraham's faith was accepted by God, in
tionable facts in the history of the Galatian place of righteousness, or a perfect life, as a
churches, and founds upon them an argu- condition of jiLstification. "Because of this
ment against the Judaistic teaching, that men faith in Christ," says Martin Luther, "God
could not be acceptable to God through faith seeth not my doubting of his good-will toward
in Christ, without obeying the Jewish Law. me, my distrust, heaviness of spirit, and otiier
Doeth he it by the works of the law, or sins which are yet in me. For as long as I live
by the hearing of faith? The subject of the in the flesh, sin is truly in me. But because I am
whole sentence is without any doubt God, and covered under the sliadow of Chri.st's wings,
the manifest assumption of the apostle is, that as is the chicken under the wing of the hen,
the gift of the Holy Spirit to the Galatians, and dwell without fear under that most ample
and his marvelous working in them, had de- and large heaven of the forgiveness of sin.s,
pended in no degree on their obedience to which is spread over me, God covereth and
the Jewish Law, but altogether on their faith pardoneth the remnant of sin in me that is
in Christ. Indeed, there is no evidence that to say, because of that faith wherewith I began
they had yet observed the Jewish rites to any to lay hold upon Christ, he accepteth my im-
considerable extent, or, if any of them had done perfect righteousness even for perfect right-
this, Paul was certain that they could not as- eousness, and counteth my sin for no sin, which
cribe this working of the Holj' Spirit in them notwithstanding is sin indeed."
or among them to their legal Hence he
works. 7. Know ye therefore that they which
presses the question boldly as one that must are of faith, the same are the children of
receive an answer which would refute all pos- Abraham. With equal propriety the verse
sible arguments for keeping the law as a con- maybe rendered Ve know therefore that they :

ditinn of justification with God. who are of faith, these are sons of Abraham.
2. Confirmation of this View by an The word 'these' is emphatic, these and no
Appeal to the Bible ArcouxT of Abra- others. Though the imperative 'know' is more
ham's Justification. (0-9.) animated than the indicative 'ye know' or
6. Even as Abraham believed God, and perceive, it seems less natural in a passage so
it was accounted (m'/oinrrf to him for argumentative as this has now become. The
)

righteousness. The answer of the previous readers are presumed to see that only persons
question is left to be supplied by the reader. of the same religious spirit as Abraham can be
It must be: 'surely of faith,' and with this in properly called his sons. Compare the same
mind the apostle adds: 'Even as Abraham apostle's words in Rom. 4:11, seq., and the Sav-
believed God,' etc. The phraselogy of the iour's words in John 8:8, 39. Lightfoot explains
40 GALATIANS. [Ch. III.

8 And the Scripture, forseeing that God would justify 8 And


the scripture, foreseeing that God ' would justify
the heatheu thiuugh fauli,
reached beloie ilie gospel
(
the -Gentiles by faith, jireached the gospel before-
unto Abraham, suymy, lu thee shall all nations be hand unto Abraham, suyiuy, lu thee shall all the
blessed. 9 nations be blessed. So then they who are of faith
y !So then ihey which be of faith are blessed with
faithful Abraham.

1 Gr. justifteth 2 Gr. nations.

the phrase 'who are of faith' (oi U 7ri<TTc<os) as Compare 1 Cor. 7 14." But this seems to put :

meaning, "they whose stsiriing-point, whose Abraham very nearly' in the place which Paul
fundamental principle is faith," and Sieffert- everywhere else a.ssigns to Chri.st. Sieffert
Meyer says that it " designates the believers remarks: " In thee,' that is, in this fact, that '

according to their specilic peculiarity geneti- thou art blessed, is contained (as a conse-
cally. Faith is that from wliich their spirit- quence) the being blessed of all the heathen,
ual condition springs. Compare Rom. 2:8; in so far, namely, as all the heathen were
3: 26; 4: 14; John 18: 37." to attain through faith to justification and
8. And the Scripture, foreseeing that through justification to the reception of the
God would justify the heathen through Holy Spirit, but in the blessing of Abraham,
faith, the Gentiles by faith. 'The Scripture' the father of all believers (Rom. 4), the connec-
is here personified as having divine foresight, tion of faith and justification was revealed
doubtless because it is conceived of as being the and established for all future time." This
word, and til ere fore, virtually, the intelligence is better. Jowett thinks that 'in thee' is equiv-
of God. Compare Rom. 4 3, 9, 17 Jolin 7 38, alent to "in thee as their type," or "in thy
: ; :

where it is spoken of as saying that which faith," adding that "the general meaning is
God says in and by it. The verb would jus- as follows: It was not a mere accident that it
'

tify is in the present tense to denote the rule was said, 'In thee shall all the Gentiles be
'

of action fixed in the mind of God and fol- blessed but because Abraham was justified
'
;

lowed by him. And the words 'by faith are by faith, as the Gentiles were to be justified
'

emphatic, containing the jirincipal thought of by faith." It may then be sufficient to say
the participial clause. Preached before the that Abraham was the primary and palmary
gospel unto Abraham. See Revised Ver- example of justification by faith, in whom
sion. Of course, it was God, whose words were made known to mankind the principle
were subsequently recorded and are preserved and condition on which all men in subsequent
I

in Scripture, who did this. In the personifi- ages were to find acceptance with God. There-
'

cation, the Scripture is siinply said to do what fore all who resemble him in faith are called
I

God, the Supreme Author of it, really did. his sons, and their justification is conceived of
Saying, In thee shall all (the) nations be !
as but a repetition or amplification of his.
blessed. "That promise was an evangel be- !
There does not appear to be any explicit ref-
fore the evangel." (Sieffert.) It is to be found erence to Christ in the word 'thee' that ref- ;

in Gen. 12:3, according to the.Septuagint, erence is to be found in the added words of


though the apostle has substituted 'all the ver. 16, "thy seed."
nations' for 'all the families of the earth.' 9. So then they which (thai) be of faith
In Gen. 18: 18 the same promise is repeated are blessed with faithful Abraham. Here,
with reference to Abraham: "And all the by way of general conclusion, Paul affirms
nations of the earth shall be blessed in him." that believers are blessed with the believing
The precise sense of 'in thee' cannot be easily Abraham. 'With Abraham' the apostle now
fixed. Lightfoot says: "'In thee,' as their writes, not 'in him' by which the joint par- ;

spiritual father" but we ask, In what sense ticipation in the blessing of God on the same
;

is Abraham the spiritual father of believing terms is simply and strongly affirmed. The
Gentiles? Eilicott says a little more: "'In spiritual attitude toward God which was ac-
thee' as the spiritual father of all the faithful, ceptable in the case of Abraham is acceptable
the preposition with its usual force specify- in every man, whether Jew or Gentile. Com-
ing Abraham as the .^uhstratmn, foundntion, pare Rom. 4: 23.
on which, and in which, the blessing rests. Paul has now appealed, (a) to the early ex-
C:i. III.] GALATIANS. 41

10 For as many as are of the works of the law are 10 are blessed with the faithful Abraham. For as many
under the curse: for it is written, Cursed every one as are of i the works of the law are under a curse :
that couiiiiuoih not in ;ill thiugs which are written iu lor it is written, Cursed is every one who coutinuelh
the book of the law to do Iheui. not in all things that arc written iu the book of the

1 Or, works of law.

])erience which the Gahitiaiis eiijoj'ed of the way, by showing from the same divine word
Holy Spirit's wurk in their hearts, (6) to the that they cannot be justified by obedience to
great sufferings wliich they had been enabled the law. Compare Rom. 4 : 15. By those who
to bear for Christ's sake, and (c) to the extra- 'are of works of law' are meant those " whose
ordinary spiritual gifts which tliey had re- character is founded on worUs of law." Their
ceivedall coming to them througii faith in spirit is the legal spirit, a spirit which is fos-
Christ, without the performance of legal tered by legal observances when these are
works, as proof that not such works, but looked upon as the ground of acceptance with
rather faith, is the condition of acceptance God. The exact shade of thought intended
with God. Tills truth he has also contirmed here is probably "those who depend on them
by showing through the testimony of Script- for justification." (Boise.) For it is written.
ure (n) that Abraham was justified by faith, Cursed is every one that coutiiiueth not
and (6) that all the nations are to be partakers in all things which are written in the
of the grace of God on the same terms with book of the law, to do them. See Deut.
him. His next step is to prove from the Holy 27 26. Quoted freely from the Septuagint
:

Scriptures : which, in turn, is a free translation of the He-


3. That No Sinner can be Justified brew. For the Hebrew reads: "Cursed be
AND Blessed by God on the Ground of he that confirmeth not the words of this law to

hisObediencetothe Law. (10-12.) Light- do them " the Septuagint, " Cursed be every
;

ft)0t's summary or paraphrase is excellent: man that continueth not in all the words of
"Having shown by positive proof that justifi- this law to do them"; and Paul, as above,
cation is of faith, he strengthens his position inserts the words, 'in the book of,' and substi-
by the negative argument derived from the tutes 'the things written in' for 'the words
impossibility of maintaining its opposite, jus- of But these changes do not affect the sense
tification by law. This negative argument is of the passage. They merely serve to bring
twofold: First, it is impossible to fulfill the out more distinctly the meaning contained in
requirements of the law, and the non-fulfill- the briefer original. The word 'cursed' sig-
ment lays us under a curse (ver. lo) secondly, nifies "condemned and suffering God's just
;

supposing the fulfillment possible, still the displeasure." The effect of that condemna-
spirit of the law is antagonistic to faith, which tion was not, in the case of the chosen people,
is elsewhere spoken of as the source of life, reserved altogether to a future state. It often
(ver. 11, 12-)" Ctmipare the analysis of Hackett took the form of temporal calamities. Yet
before the notes on ver. 1. under the clearer light of the Saviour's teach-
10. For as many as are of the works of ing we learn that it will eventuate in eternal
the law are under the () curse. This is ruin. The final clause, to do them,' describes
'

introduced by 'for,' because it is meant to be the way in which one must 'confirm' or 'con-
a confirmation of the conclusion just stated, tinue in' all the requirements of the law, in

that men are justified through faith. The order to escape condemnation. Perfect obe-
general premise admitted by all Christians dience, obedience in all things, is demanded.
was that men may be justified. The special Transgression in one point is sin. James re-
premise here assumed is that this must be fers to the same fact: "For whosoever shall
effected in one of two opposite ways, through keep the whole law, and yet stumble in on&
faith or through obedience to law. Having point, he is become guilty of all." (2:10.) Paul's
produced evidence from the experience of the statement, then, means that all who depend
Galatian believers, and from the word of God, upon works of the law for justification are
that men have been from of old until now c<indemned for every one who fails to obey
;

justified through faith, he confirms his posi- that law perfectly is condemned, and every
tion that this is the way, and indeed the only man has failed and will fail to obey it thus.'
42 GALATIANS. [Ch. III.

11 But that no man is justified by the law in the 11 law to do them. Now that no man is justified i by
sight of Ciod, U is evident : for, The just shall live by the law in the sight of (iod, is evident: for. The
faith.
12 righteous shall live by I'aith and the law is not of
;

12 And the law is not of faith: but, The man that faith; but. He that doeth them shall live in them.
doeth them shall live in ihem.

Hence justification bj' legal works is impossi- liance or faith is meant in our passage is evi-
ble, and as many as rely upon them for it are dent; it is deniiinded by a clause in the pre-
under a curse. To make this doubly certain ceding verse " wait for it." (Hab. 2:3.) :

he presents the matter in another light, as fol- And the law is not of faith. That is, ac-
lows :
cording to the apostle, faith is not the working
11. But [now) that no man is justified principle of the law, the idea from which it
by the law in the sight of God, it is evi- proceeds and upon which it depends for its efii-
dent : for, The just {righteous) shall live cac3'. Compare Rom. 10 5. But, the man :

by faith. Compare Rom. 1 17 B 21, seq.; that doeth (or, hath done) them shall live
: ; :

Heb. 10:38. The cogency of this reasoning in them. An abbreviated quotation of Lev.
depends on the assumption tliat justification by 18:5: " Ye shall keep my statutes, and my
legal works cannot blend with or be co-ordi- judgments, which if a mtin do, he shall live in
nate with justification by faith. The methods them." Hence obedience is the condition of
diflTer one excludes the other. And true life under the law. Doing, not believing,
radically ;

this is more evident after what is said in is the central idea of the legal system. Hft
the
the preceding verse, which really shows that that has done what the law requires shall have
the only persons to be justified are sinners. life in and by the works which he has per-
By the law might be rendered in the law,' formed. By epitomizing the words of Levi-
' ' '

that is, in its sphere and domain, where it de- ticus so freely, Paul shows that he believed the
termines the standing of every one. 'The Galatians to be familiar with this part of the
righteous shall live by faith.' SeeHab. 2: 4. Old Testament. It is possible that he had
Another rendering which is adopted by many himself used it for a similar pur|iose when
scholars, connects 'faith' with the adjective with them, and equally jxtssible that it was
'righteous' instead of the verb 'shall live,' frequently used by the Judaizing teachers who
thus: 'He, who is righteous by faith, shall hiid come among them since his last visit. To
live.' This rendering suits the argutiient of infer from the apostle's free manner of citing
Paul better than the ordinary one. but it is the Old Testament in this instance that the
not so natural a translation of the original Galatians were known by him to be well ac-
text. For that appears to mean The right- quainted with the entire Old Testament would
:
'

eous man through his steadfast trust' be going too far; yet a similar usage meets us
will live
(in God). "The word rendered 'faith'," in the Epistle to the Romans, and it is per-
says Cook, in the "Bible Commentary," " has fectly safe to conclude that he was in the habit
the fundamental sense of steadfastness, hence of appealing to the Old Testament in his
trustworthiness, faithfulness in the discharge of preaching, and that the churches founded by
all duties, especially of promises; as a personal him, as well as those founded by the apostles
quality, truth in deed and word, and in man's of the circumcision, were taught to search the
relation to God, firm belief and reliance on the Scriptures to see 'whether these things were
divine promise, the special sense in this pas- so.' (Acts 17:11.) A good cxamplc for all to
sage whatever may betide others who "will follow! No part of the Bible has become an-
;

not believe" (Hab. i:d), the righteous who be- tiquated and useless, and no class of men is
lieves and trusts will live. Tliat the word is excused from the direct examination of the
properly rendered 'faith,' taken in the full, sacred record. It was given to the people
true sense of trustful faith, is clear from the originally, and was adapted to their capacity.
usage of the word in the palmary text: "And It is suited to them now, for their intelligence
he believed the Lord, and he counted it to him is not inferior to that of men in the apostolic age.
for righteousness." (Geu.isie.) That such re- Having shown that all who rely upon legal
Ch. III.] GALATIANS. 43
i:j Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the 13 Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law, having
law, being luaile a curse for us; for it is written, Cursed become a curse for us: for it is written, (.'ursed is
is every one tliat liangeih on a tree: 14 every one that hangcth on a tree: that upon the
H That ihe tiks>inf; of Abraliani might come on the lieiitilcs might come the blessing of Abraham in
Geuliles through .le.siis Christ; that we might receive Christ Jesus; tliai we might receive the promise of
the promise of the spirit through laith. the Spirit through faith.

works God are under with an omission of the words 'by God,' thus:
for justification before
a curse, the apostle now how it is
explains "For every one hanged upon a tree is cursed
4. That some through the Exercise by God." The Hebrew of Deut. 21 22, 23, is :

OF Faith have beex Delivered from thus translated" in the Revised Version "And :

THAT Curse. (13, 14.) if a man have committed a sin worthy of


13. Christ hath retleemed us from the death, and he be put to death, and thou hang
curse of the law, being made (having be- him on a tree; his body shall not remain all
come) a curse for us. Tlie sense would be night upon the tree, but tliou shalt bury him
truly expressed if the last clause were trans- the same day for he that is hanged is accursed
:

lated by becoming a curse for us.'


'
For the by God." Hanging was a public exposure
participle shows how the redemption was ef- after death in the case of great crimiiuils,
fected, ratlier than something which preceded which added to the ignominy and shame of
that redemption. And the word 'redeemed' their punishment. Jesus Christ, then, suf-
signifies, literally, 'bought out from,' in this fered death in a form prescribed for the worst
case from the curse or condemnation of the criminals, and was treated after a manner
violated law. It is most frequently applied to which signified that the curse of God rested
the act of ransoming one from .slaverj'. The on him. His body was not allowed to remain
particular way in which 'Clirist hath re- upon the cross over night, but was treated as
deemed us,' by becoming a curse for us, is something accursed. The clause is a paren-
explained b^' the following quotation. And thesis, and the next verse is to be connected
the sense in which he became a curse for us is with the first part of this; namely, 'Christ
explained in some measure by the apostle's redeemed us from the curse of the law by be-
language in 2 Cor. 5:21: "Him who knew coming a curse for us.'
no sin he made to be sin in our behalf, tliat we 14. That the blessing of Abraham
might become the righteousness of God in might come on the Gentiles through
him." He suffered death, as though he were (in) Jesus Christ. Tliat blessing, as before
a sinner, in behalf of those who were sinners. shown, was obtained through faith, and not
He bore the punishment due to them for their by obedience to the law a thought which
sins. The noun 'curse' is more forcible than was now burnt into the minds of the Gala-
the adjective 'cursed.' Besides, in the Jewish tians. That we might receive the prom-
ritual "the victim is regarded as bearing the ise of the Spirit through faith. The 'we'
sins of those for wiiom atonement is made. is here comprehensive of all, whether Jews or
The curse is transferred from them to it. It Gentiles, who have true faith in Christ. For
becomes in a certain sense the impersonation this blessing, the fulfillment of the promise of
of the sin and of the curse. This idea is very the Holy Spirit, or the promised Spirit, was
prominent in the scapegoat." (Lightfoot. bestowed on believing Gentiles as well as be-

For it is written or, 'because it has been lieving Jews, and it is scarcely natural to .sup-
written.' That is to say, in the Sacred Script- pose that the apo.stle here thinks of Jews only,
ures. When this formula is used in the New especially as he began his argument with the
Testament it always refers to something which Galatians by appealing to the Spirit's work
stands written in the Old Testament. So high in them, when and after they believed. "The
was the character of that volume, so abso- Holy Spirit is the divine power of that life in
lutely unique its position and authority, that which the blessing promised to Abraham con-
it alone was suggested when anything was sists; he founds it, regulates its development,
spoken of as written, unless some qualifying and pledges its completion therefore he is ;

statement was added. Cursed is every one called the Spirit of life. (Rom.8-2.)" (Sief-
that han<i;eth on a tree. This expression is fert. 'Through faith' faith is the organ by
)

taken from the Septuagint of Deut. 21 23, which the Spirit is received.
:
From these
44 GALATIANS. [Ch. III.

15 Brethren, I speak after the manner of men; 15 Brethren, I speak after the manner of men
Th.iuyh it he but a man's covenant, yet ij' it be con- Though it be but a man's covenant, yet. when it bath
Uriuea, no man Uisannulleth, or addeth thereto. been confirmed, no one maketii it void, or addeth
Hi Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises 16 thereto. Now to Abraham were the promises sijuken,
made, lie saith not, And to seeds, as of many but as ; and to his seed. He saith not. And to seeiis, as (.1
of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ. many; but as of one. And to thy seed, which is

verses (13, 14) it appears that Paul regarded his exposition then receive close attention, and
the viciirious death of Christ as necessary, in just, ifnut generous, treatment!
order t< the fultillmentof the promise to A bra- He saith not. And to seeds, as of many ;
hatn. Human salvation depends upon the death but as of one. And to thy seed, which is
of the lledeemer as a propitiatory sacrifice, and Christ. On this verse Dr. Hackett sa^'s:
has always depended on that death. "The apostle does not refer here to any par-
Paul next proceeds to show ticular passage in the Old Testament which
5. That the Promise to Abraham Can- contains these words but avails himself . . . ;

not HAVE BEEN Annulled or Changed by of this compendious mode of speaking as a


THE Law WHICH WAS Given Long After- convenient formula for summing up the entire
ward. (15-18.) Compare Kom. 4 13, 14, 16. teaching of the Scriptures on this subject. It
:

15. Brethren, I speak after the manner will be noticed that the singular and the plu-
of men. Observe the cordial address, 'breth- ral differ in this, tiiat 'seed' {anipixa) denotes a
ren.' The feelings of love and kindness are unity of genus or class with a plurality of
deep iti the apostle's hetirt, and they now find parts (as, for example, the wheat is one,
expression. After the manner of men that though the kernels, are many), and 'seeds'
' '

is to say, '
I am about
an illustrationto use (o-irep/aaTa) a plurality of classes, as wheat, bar-
from man's way of dealing with man.' ley, rye. Compare
in 1 Sam. 8: 'seed' i]^"^])

Though it be but a man's covenant, yet 15. Paul had said:


It is, therefore, as if
if it be confirmed, no man disannulleth, "Search the Scriptures from Genesis to Mal-
or addeth tliereto. There seems to be no achi the promises all run in one strain; they
;

absolute necessity for the insertion of 'but' make no mention of a plurality of seeds, such
in the first clause, and therefore, as it repre- as a natural and spiritual seed, at the same
sents no word in the original, it may be time; they spetik of a single seed only, the
better to omit it, thus: 'A covenant which believing race, those who are like Abraham in
has been ratified, though a man's, yet no one his faith (see Rom. 4 12), whether Jews or :

sets aside or adds to it.' The word 'man's' is Gentiles; and as this restriction of the lan-
emphatic, in contrast with the word 'God's,' guage to the one seed limits and exhausts the
understood. That is, when a contract between promises as to any share in the blessings of
different men is once ratified or confirmed, it Abraham's justification, there are no promises
ctmnot be changed by setting it tiside alto- of this nature for other seeds, such as Abra-
gether, or by adding new stipulations. It is ham's natural descendants, merely as such, or
fixed and sacred. Jews by adoption, in virtue of their submis-
16. Now to Abraham and his seed sion to Jewish rites." It may be observed:
Avere the promises made. See Revised (1) That the promises made to Abraham were
Version and Gen. 13:15; 22:17, 18. It made also to his spiritual 'seed,' the collective
is the words 'and his seed' which Paul noun denoting one body of posterity, not sev-
uses in the following exposition. His ar- eral bodies. Compare ver. 7, 9, 14, above.
gument has been freely That Christ was the glory of Abraham's
criticised as Rab- (2)
binical, and by Baur as " plainly arbitrary seed, the One whose trust in God was absolute,
and incorrect." But it is our duty to hesitate and in whom pre-eminently all the nations
l(mg before charging the apostle with unsound were to be blessed. (3) That Christ is the uni-
interpretation or doctrine. Very likely his fying power in all true believers. In him
tliought is deeper than we perceive, and wor- they are 'one' person' ('). See ver. 28. In-
thy of admiration, rather than of contempt. deed, it has been said that Paul was fully jus-
Certainly he was correct in looking upon these tified in regarding all the promises as made to
promises as having more reference to the seed Christ, because Christ was the principle of
of Abraham than to Abraham himself. Let spiritual life in Abraham and in all who, like
Ch. III.] GALATIANS. 45
17 And I say, thai the covenant, that was con-
this j
17 Christ. Now this I say; A covenant confirmed be-
of (iod in Christ, the law, which was lour
firuieil lieforu lorchand by Uod, the law, which came four hundred
hundred and thirty years alter, cannot dibauuul, that and thirty years after, doth not disannul, so as to
it should make the promise of none etteet. |

him, believe. To
dwelling by liis raelites in Egypt was four hundred and thirty
Christ,
Spirit in the faithful of every age, were the years. Compare the language of Stephen in
promises really made. Compare the notes of Acts 7 t), and Hackett's note on the same. :

Ellicoit, Lightfoot, Cook, Beet, oi] this pas- The sojourn in Egypt is there spoken of in
sage; also Balentiiie in " Bibliotheca Sacra," round numbers as tour hundred years. But,
188o, and on the other
page 508, side of the according to tlae best computation, two hun-
question Bauer, Meyer, and others. Tiie argu- dred and fifteen years elapsed between the
ment of tile apostle not without difficulty,
is time when the promise was first given and the
but there is no ground for the charge that it is time when Jacob and his sons went down into
fallacious. Much rather should we suppose Egypt at the invitation of Joseph so that the
;

that it rests upon a deeper view of the unity of law came more than six hundred years after
believers with Christ than is cominonly enter- the promise. What shall be said of this dis-
tained. To this fact Paul often refers in lan- crepancy ? This, in the first place, that Paul's
guage of startling force. reasoning is not affected in the slightest de-
17. Now this I say in other words, '
This gree by the length of the period. The law
is my
meaning, the principal thought which I
was given long after the promise whether four
have connection with my remark
to express in hundred and
years or six hundred and thirty-
concerning a man's covenant.' The conjunc- forty-five j'ears, more or less, is of no conse-
tion now' (6ej is resumptive; for the apostle's
'
quence. It was enough for him to refer to the
argument had been interruiited momentarily period in such terms as would bring it dis-
by the explanation of 'his seed,' in ver. 16. tinctly before the minds of his readers. He
The covenant that was coiifirined before is not fixing points of chronology, but recall-
of (by) fciod in Christ, the law, which was ing a well-known period. Accordingly
(came) four hundred and thirty years 1. Paul may have followed the Septuagint,

after, cannot disannul (or, annul) that it which contains an addition to the Hebrew
should make the promise of none effect text of Exod. 12 40, making it read, 'in the :

that is, if human covenants once ratified are land of Eg3'pt and in the land of Cajianii,'
sacred and cannot be abrogated or essentially and may have done this because the Greek
modified afterward, much less can the law, version was suflSciently accurate for his jnir-
which was given long after the covenant had pose and was generall3' used by the Galatians.
been established by God himself with Abra- His object was not to teach them Biblical
ham, annul the promise contained in that chronology, but to remind them of the fact
covenant. Whatever else may have been the that the law was given long after the promise,
design of the law, it cannot have been in- and could not be supposed to destroy or change
tended to set aside, or to modify by new the latter.
terms, the promise of justification through 2. He may have followed the Hebrew text,

faith. "The gifts and the calling of God are making the dose, instead of the beginning of
without repentance." (Rom. ii 29.) the patriarchal age, the starting point in his
:

But though the bearing of this verse on reckoning; for the promise was repeated to
Paul's argument is very clear, objection has Isaac and Jacob, and was, therefore, contem-
been made to it as containing an erroneous poraneous with the whole patriarchal period.
chronological statement. For the words, With this would agree the plural, 'promises,'
'which came four hundred and thirty years in ver. 16, if this plural relates to a repeti-
after,' are said to imply that the whole period, tion of essentially the same promise, which is
from the first giving of the promise to Abra- certainly probable.
ham to the giving of the law, was only four 3. He may have followed the Septuagint
hundred and thirtj' years while Exod. 12 40, Version, because it was correct in sense. In
; :

41, where, and where onlj' the same period is support of this view, which limits the actual
mentioned, shows that the sojourn of the Is- sojourn of Israel in Egypt to two hundred
46 GALATIANS. [Ch. IIL

make the promise of none efiect. For if the inherits


18 Fur if the inheritance be of the law, it is no more 18

of promise: but Goa gave U to Abraiiam by promise,


auce is of the law, it is no more of promise but God :

la Wherefore then i,erceth the law? It was added


19 halh granted it to Abraham by promise. What then
is the law V it was adaed because of irausgressions,

iind fifteen years, appeal is made to Exod. of enabling us to establish a claim to the Di-
0:20 and Num. 2(3:59;according to
for, vine favor, what end, the objector may ask,
these passages, " Amram, grandson of Levi, was it designed to answer? (3:i9.) In reply
marries liis father's sister, Jochebed." And, to this question, the apostle explains the great

as it appears probable by a comparison of object of the law to be to prepare men for the

dates that Levi was born when Jacob was reception of the gospel by awakening them to
about eight3'-seven, Levi would have been a consciousness of their sins and convincing

forty-three when he came into Egypt; there them of their need of the deliverance from
he lives ninety-four years. (Kxod. 6:i6.j As- guilt and condemnation, which the redemp-
suming, then, that Jochebed was born in the tion of Christ atibrds. (3:i0-22.) We may
last j^ear of Levi's life,
which is by no means suppose that while Paul would describe this

probable, she must have befen at least two as the office of law in general, and one, there-

hundred and fifty-six years old when Moses fore, which it is adapted still to perform as a

was born, if the sojourn in Egypt be four means of bringing men to Christ, he means to
hundred and thirty years." (Eilicott. ) If affirm here more especially of the Mosaic
it

there are no missing links in the genealogy Economy, that great embodiment of the legal
of Exod. 6 20 and of Num. 26 59, the so-
: :
principle which was established to prepare the
journ of the Israelites in Egypt could not way for another and better system and then, ;

liave lasted more than about two hundred and as to its outward forms, its rites and symbols,
fifteen years But the most obvious interpre- was destined to come to an end. (3:23-25.)
tation of a genealogical table is not always Under this more perfect system which is real-
trustworthy; for unimportant names are fre- ized in Christ, those who wore only the natural
quently omitted from such a table. On the descendants of Abraham become by faith his
whole, then, either the first or the second spiritual seed ; those who were servants, groan-
explanation is preferable to the third but in ;
ing under the bondage of sin and the law,
no case can the truthfulness of Paul's hm- become free. (3 26-29.) Those who were chil-
:

guiige be impeached. dren in a state of minority and pupilage, are


'
18. For if the inheritance be (is) of the advanced to tiie dignity of sons and heirs of
laAV, it is no more of promise : but God God, and receive the seal of their adoption as
gave {linth given) it to Abraham by prom- such in the presence of the Spirit of God in
ise. 'For' makes this confirmatory of the their hearts. (4:!-7.)" (Hackett.)
preceding words, 'so as to make the promise 19. Wherefore then serveth the law?
of none effect.' It would be better, perhaps, that is to say. What is the object of the laiv ?

in this instance, to insert no article before the The same meaning would be gained by trans-
word 'law' 'If the inlieritance is of law, it
: lating the question, '
Why then the law? '
If
is no more of promise,' as it was before the men cannot be justified by means of it, what
law was given. Yet the reference may be to good end does it serve, or why was it given?
tlie law of Moses. Hath given.' The orig-
'
The question which the apostle asks is one that
inal word means hath freely given. Once could hardly fail to arise in the minds of the
more, therefore, the apostle insists that true Galatians. Having been taught to accept the
heirship is a free gift. It cannot be earned Old Testament as a divine revelation, and the
by obedience to the law. Justification is by law given by Moses as coming really from
grace through faith. God, it was impossible for them to believe
Tlie apostle now proceeds to point out that it had no holy purpose to serve. And if
0. The Ob.jkct for which the Law was their teacher had now proved that no man
Givkn; Namely, to Awaken in Men a could be saved by obedience to it, they would
Consciousness of Sin, and thus Lead naturally insist upon his pointing out the
them to Faith in Christ. (3 19-24.) : reason for its existence, the good end which
"But if the law have no value as a means it was meant to accomplish. The apostle an-
Ch. III.] GALATIANS. 47

because of transgressions, till the seed should come till the seed should come to whom the promise hath
to whom the promise was iiiude; and it was ordiiiuud been made; </ (7 ((.< ordained throuj^h angels by
by angtls in the hand ot a mediator. 20 the hand of a mediator. Isow a mediator is not a
20 Now a mediator is not a mediator of one, but God
is one.

swcrs : It was added because of {the) Moses, who received the law and made it

transgressions. The word translated 'be- known Thougii nothing is said


to the people.
cause of signifies, primarily, for the sake of, in the book of Exodus concerning the minis-
and it is best to retain that meaning here. tration of angels at the giving of the law,
Thayer's "Lexicon" explains the phrase their presence is referred to in Deut. 33 2, :

"for tiie sake of tran?gres.sions" as meaning, and their service in Acts 7 53 and Heb. 2 2. : :

" to create transgressions that is, that sins But it is useless to conjecture what precisely
might take on the character of transgressions, their service was. This only is imjilied by the
and tliereby the consciousness of sin be intensi- argument here, as well as by the course of
fied and the desire for redemption aroused." thougiit in Heb. 2 2, that the ministry of
:

This interpretation is favored by the language angels must be supposed to have diminished,
of Paul in Rom.
20; 7 7-9, and by his rather than to have increased the intrinsic
5 : :

discussion below. See ver. 22 and 24. It is grandeur of the occasion and the iinportance
the office of the law to awaken in men the of the law. A direct communication from
consciousness of sin, in order that thej' may God himself would have served to enhance
feel the need of a Saviour; for such is the the dignity and sacredne^^s of that which wtis
nature of sinful men, as even heathen writers communicated. This will become more evi-
have confessed, that they are provoked by dent from our study of the next verse.
just restraint, and are sure to covet what is 20. Now a mediator is not {a mediator)
forbidden. Hence, conscious transgression is of one; but God is one. This language is
increased by a clear revelation of the law confessedly dark. A great truth is hinted,
which it breaks, and tlie soul is made, at the rather than fully expressed. 'A mediator'
same time, distinctly aware of its perverse (for the definite article in the Greek here
self-will and inclination to wrong doing. It marks the noun as generic), it is said in the
is, then, perf(>ctly plain that actual transgres- belong to one; and this
first clause, does not
sion is often occasioned by law and therefore implies that he belongs to two, and that a
;

the pi-oximate purpose of law may be to mul- covenant established between two, through
tiply transgressions, though, in case of the the service of a mediator, must, from the
divine law, its ultimate purpose is certainly to nature of the case, depend for its fulfillment
prepare the way for salvation through Christ. upon both. Thus was it, the apostle suggests,
This is plainly asserted by the apostle in the in the giving of the law through Moses. The
sequel. Till the seed should come to blessing of it was conditioned upon its being
whom the promise was (hath been) made honored by the people as well as by God.
(literally, given). According to ver. 16, 'But God is one,' and in giving the promise
'the seed' mu.st be Christ; and it is implied he acted without a mediator, and made the
tliat the functions of the law were to become fulfillment of his promise independent of

far less important after his coming. Indeed, human works. Saj's Sieffert: "The thought
the ritual parts of it were to be annulled and of ver. 20 in its historical application is the
the moral parts assigned to their true place in following The law is inferior to the i>roinise,:

the New Economy. Hence, all that was strictly because the mediator of it does not belong to
dictinctive in the law of Moses was to pass God alone, but to him and the people of Israel
away. And it was ordained by (thrnxgh) at the same time, and this can only mean
angels in (or, />i/) the hand of a mediator. what was intimated in ver. 15-18, that the
Tlie law was thus given. Bring ordained, law, as a covenant relation, mediately estab-
or, having been ordained, would be a literal lished between God and the people, and de-
version of the Greek, but less readable En- pending for its validity ujion the conduct of
glish than the one adopted by the Revisers. the people, can only represent theconditicmed
"By the hand of a mediator"; namely, will of God, but cannot, as the promise given
48 GALATIANS. [Ch. III.

21 Is Ihs law then against the promises of God? 21 medinlor of one; but God is one. Is the law then
God forbid: for if there liad been a law given which against the promises of God? God forbid: for il
could have given life, verily righteousness should have there had been a law given which could make alive,
been by the law. verily righteousness would have been of the law.
2> But the f>cripture hath concluded all under sin, 22 Howbeit the scripture shut up all tilings under sin,
that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be tliat the promise by faith in Jesus Christ might be
given to them tliat believe. given to them thai believe.
23 But before faiih came, we were kept under the 23 But before faitli came, we were kept in ward
law, sliut up unto the faith which should afterwards under the law, shut up unto the faith which should
be revealed.

directly by himself, be an adequate expres- and especially the law which it reveals, a law
sion of his absolute will, of his eternally valid which shows every man to be a transgressor,
purpose of salvation." ^ havmg the guilt of sin resting upon him. The
21. Is the law then against the promises neuter, rendered 'all things,' is evidently used
of God? God forbid! {Let it not be!) for the sake of emphasis in place of "all men."
The connection between this verse and the The object of God law was to
in giving the
preceding may be thus stated: "Having shown bring men to a clearer and more pungent con-
that the law is inferior to the promises, must sciousness of sin, by making it take the form
we go a step further and conclude that it of definite transgressions. In other words, it
works again.st them, that it does anything to was to make them understand their real inner
prevent their fulfillment or to render them life, their alienation from himself, and their

less necessary to human salvation? Let such need of his grace. In the last chiuse, 'the
a thought never enter the mind It is incred-
! promise' is equivalent to the fulfillment of the
ible. For, in the^i^-s^ place, does not super- promise, and 'by faith in Jesus Christ,' to on
it

sede the promise and render its fulfillment condition of faith in Jesus Christ; while the
useless, for it cannot give spiritual life, justifi- special importance of faith is shown by tlie
cation, peace with God. (ver. 21.) And, in the double reference to it in the words, 'by faith
second place, it prepares men for the grace in Jesus Christ,' and in the final expression,
which was promi.sed through Christ by awak- 'to them that believe.' Looking at salvation
ening in their hearts a sense of sin, and lead- from the human side, it depends not upon
ing them to the Saviour. For if there had works of obedience to the law, but upon faith
been a law given which could have given in Jesus Christ, the Saviour of lost men.
life {make alive), verily righteousness Even the law itself was intended to compel
should {would) have been of the law. In men to distrust the possibility of justification
this wjiy, and in this alone, could the law work before God on the ground of obedience, and
against the fulfillment of the promises. But, its to trust alone in the mercy of God through
before proved, it has no power to deliver men the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. Thus tlie law is
from sin and death. Its purpose is far humbler, not 'against the promises,' but subservient to
though exceedingly important; and this pur- them.
posed work of the law the apostle at once pro- 23. But before faith (or, better, the faith)
ceeds to explain. came, we were kept {kept in ward) under
22. But the Scripture hath concluded the law, shut up unto the faith which
{shut up) all {things) under sin, that the should afterwards be revealed. 'The
pr>miseby faith of (m) Jesus Christ might faith here means the system of doctrine of
I

'

be given to them that believe. By 'the which faith is a distinguishing featurethe


I

Scripture must be meant the Old Testament, faith system. Compare Jude3: "I was con-

1 ]Srore than three hundred different explanations of Mosaic Law in the first clause, with a proof of its in-
the thought intended by this verse are said to have feriority to the promise in the fact that a mediator
been given. The statement seems incredible, but human appertains, not to one, but to many. Thus Moses acted
ingenuity is boundless. In the last edition of Meyer's for the whole people. 3. Those which are too capri-
" Commentary," Sieffert reduces the weightiest mod-
'
cious and diverse to be brought under any one point of
ern explanations' to three classes: 1. Those which find view.
in the first half of the verse a tacit reference to the Under each of these heads several expositors are
Mosaic Law, and a proof of its inferiority to the prom- named,, and the special features of their interpretations
ise in the fact that a Mediator naturally iiuplios tivo criticised. Sieffcrt's explanation belongs to the first

parlies. 2. Those which find a tacit reference to the class.


Ch. IIL] .GALATIANS. 4&
24 Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster In bring 24 afterwards be revealed. So that the law become
is
us uiuo Christ, that we might be justified by i'aitli. our tutor to bring us unto Clirlst, tliat we niiglit be
'la Hut after iliat faith is come, we are no longer under 25 justified by faith. But now that faith is come, we
a schoolmaster. 2G are no longer uuder a tutor. Fur ye are all sous of
Hi For ye are all the children of God by faith in
Christ Jesus.

strained to write unto you exhorting you to 25. But after that faith, etc. (or, wow that
contend earnestly for the faith which was de- the faith has come) we are no longer under
livered once for all to the saints," where 'the a tutor. If we understand 'the faitii to be, '

faitli' CJinnot easily be under.*tood of snhject- as in ver. 23, the message of faith, or the gos-
ive trust or belief: it must rather signify the pel, the coming of the gospel is here said by
Christian truth delivered to men and received Paul to have changed the religious condition
by faith. For a believing spirit was not given of Jewish believers, so that they were no
once for all to the saints; it was the gospel to longer under tutelage, but in a state of free-
be believed which was thus given. So here dom. "Now, when faith is come, the school-
'
the faith which should afterwards be re- master, with his heavy and grievous office, is
vealed' cannot be subjective faith, but must constrained to give place. The law tcr- . . .

be the gospel. Compare Acts 6:7; Jude 3. rifieth and tormenteth us no more. For . . .

The pronoun 'we' appears to represent the Christ, taking upon him our flesh, came once
Jewish Christians who, before the gospel into the world: he abolished the law with all
came, ^jroclaiming the way of life tlirough its effects, and delivered from eternal death
ftiith in Christ, were guarded under the law, ail those who receive his benefit by faith. If,

lest they might escape from its control. 'Shut therefore, ye look unto Christ, and that which
up unto the faith about to be revealed.' In he hath done, there is now no law. And, . . .

this clause, 'the faith' evidently means what since the law is gone, we are not kept under
is believed by Christians, not "the form in the tyranny thereof any more; but we live in
which the truth is subjectively appropriated" joy and safety under Christ, who now sweetly

(Weiss, as quoted by Tiiayer) that is, in reigneth in us by his Spirit." (Luther.) This,
brief, the gospel itself. Says Lightfoot: "The however, according to Luther, is the ideal
use of . faith in these verses (22,23,25) links view.
. . There is another side to the Christian
together its extreme senses, passing from the life in its present imperfect state. "Accord-
one to the other: 1. Faith, the subjective state ing to the spirit, we serve with Paul, the 'law
of the Christian; 2. Tlie faith, the gospel, tlie of God: but according to the flesh the law of
objective teaching, the system of which faith' sin.' '
As long as we live in the flesh,
. . .

is the leading feature." which is not without sin, the law oftentimes
24. Wherefore the law was {hath been) returneth and docth his office, in otie more,
our schoolmaster (tutor) to bring us unto and in another less, as their faith is strong or
Christ, that we might be justified by weak, and yet not to their destruction, but to
faith. The strict supervision and moral train- tlieir salvation. For this is the exercise of the

ing of the'law were a preparation for the free- law in the saints namely, the continual mor-
dom under Christ. Its office was similtir to tification of the flesh, of reason, and of our
that of a pedagogiie, or tutor, who has the own strength, and the daily renewing of our
care and control of children, watching them, inward man."
restraining them, and often subjecting them Having thus exj)lainod the change in the
to rigid discipline. "Among the Greek and religious condition of those Jews who had
Latin writers the idea of guardianship, and accepted the grace of God in Christ Jesus
also of strictness and severity, is distinctlj' The Apostle turns to the G-alatiaxs
prominent." (.Ellicott.) 'Unto Christ,' or for AND DeSCRIHES THEIR KeLATION TO GoD
Clirist, marking Christ as the THROUGH Faith.
the preposition
object or end for which the law was a tutor. 26. For ye are all the children (sons) of
The law accomplished its pedagogic work by God, through faith in Christ Jesus liter-
awakening a sense of sin, and thus preparing ally, 'through the (iiith in Christ Jesus,' the
tho-:e under it to welcome the redemption faith which has been so often referred to in
purchased by Christ. this discussion, and whichi has in Jesus Christ
50 GALATIANS. [Ch. III.

27 For as many of you as have been baptized into 27 God, through fiith, in Christ Jesus. For as many
Clirist have put on Christ. of you as were baptized into Christ did put on
28 There neiiher Jew nor Greek, there is neither
is 28 Christ. There can be neiiher Jew nor Greek, there
bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for can be neithiT bond nor free, there can be no male
ye are all one in Christ Jesus. and female for ye all are one 7iian in <;hrist Jesus.
:

29 And if ye be. Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, 29 And if ye are Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed,
and heirs according to the promise. heirs according to promise.

its object and resting place. "He saith not, denoting the complete assumption of the na-
ye are the children of God because ye are ture, etc., of anotner." See Col. 3 9, 10. :

circumcised, because ye have heard the law 28. There is (can he) neither Jew nor
and have done the works thereof (as the Jews Greek, there is {can be) neither bond nor
do imagine and the false apostles teach), but free, there is {can be) neither male nor
by faith in Jesus Christ. What tongue, female : for ye all are one {man) in
. . .

eith(!r of men or angels, can sulBcientiy extol Christ Jesus. See Revised Version. Light-
and magnify the great mercy of God toward foot's paraphrase is excellent: "In Christ ye
us, that we, who are miserable siimers, and by are all sons, all free. Every barrier is swept
nature the children of wrath, should be called away. No special claims, no special liabilities
to his grace and glory, to be made the children exi.stin him; none cam exist. The conventional
and heirs of God, fellow-heirs with the Son of distinctions of religious caste or of social rank,
God, and lords over heaven and earth, and even the natural distinction of sex, are ban-
that by means of our faith only which is in ished hence. One heart beats in all: one mind
Christ Jesus." (Luther.) guides all: one life is lived by all: ye are all
27. For as many of you as have been ojie man, for ye are members of Christ." The
(we7-e) baptized into Christ have (did) put unity here affirmed relates to spiritual life and
on Christ. Tor' shows that this verse was standing before God. It is, therefore, per-
written to confirm the preceding statement, to fectly consistent with diversity of offices, du-
show that all believers in Christ, the Son of ties, gifts
whether in the church or in the
God, are so united with him as to be, in con- world. See the apostle's discussion in 1 Cor-
sequence of that union, also themselves sons inthians chapters 12 and 14. There is or,
of God. To express this, baptism must have can be (eVi). For the origin and meaning of
represented the beginning of true faith in the the Greek word, see Thayer's "New Testa-
soul. And the words, did put on Christ,'
'
ment Lexicon," sub voce; "Winer's "New
describe the act of baptism as their own act. Testament Grammar," page 80; and EUicott,
They do not agree with the idea that baptism Lightfoot, and others on this passage. Com-
was intended to produce failh in any one who pare Col. 8 and James 1 17, where the
: 11 :

did not wish to be a servant of Christ, or to same word occurs. Thayer defines it, "is in,
implant the germ of it in infants. All who is among, is present, has place" for the New
were baptized did by that act avowedly put Testament; but says that in profane authors
on Christ, did ritually and solemnly and pub- it
'^
often signifies can be, is possible, is law-
licly confess their having entered upon a new ful." Lightfoot explains its meaning here as
spiritual life of faith in the Son of God. Elli- " there is no room for, place for."
cott explains into Christ as meaning, in this
'
' 29. And if ye be Christ's, then are ye
place, "into communion with him, and in- Abraham's seed, and heirs according to
corporation in his mystical body." He also the promise that is, if you belong to the
says that "from the instances which Wettstein person of Christ, then, being one with him,
has collected on Kom. 13, 14, it would appear the Seed to whom the promise was given, are
that 'to put on one' is a strong expression, ye Abraham's seed, heirs according to promise.
Ch. IV.] GALATIANS. 51

CHAPTER IV.
lyOW I say, That the heir, as long as he is a child, 1 But
I say that so long as the heir is a child, he
l\ tliffereth nothing from a servanl, though he be ditTereth nothing from a bondservant, though he is
lord of all 2 lord of all; but is under guardians and stewards
2 But is under tutors and gjveruors until the time 3 until the term appointed of the father. So we also,
appointed of the faiher. when we were children, were held in bondage under
A Even So we, wlieu we were children, were in bond-
age under the elements of the world:

Cli. 4 : The Apostle Describes the Re- pears to be this that the duties of the latter were
lation OF Christians to God as that of commonly restricted to the care of the house-
Sons and Heirs, Instead of Minors or hold, while the duties of the former were not
Bondservants. (1-7.) Dr. Hackett, as we thus restricted, but might include the care
have seen (s is), understands these verses to and training of children.
: Until the time '

tench tliat "those who were children in a state appointed by the father.' The Greek (t^
of minority and pupihige, are advanced to the 7rpo9e<7-Mia) means the'before-appolnted doxy or
dignity of sons and heirs of God, and receive hour, the word day (ij/nepa), or hour (ipo)
the seal of their adoption as such in the being understood. Yet the expression 'the
presence of the Spirit of God in their hearts." term appointed' is sufficiently accurate, be-
1. Now I say, Thtit tlie heir, as long as cause the day or hour fixed was the terminus
he is a child, diflfereth nothing from a of a period. It is said that among the He-
servant, though he be lord of all. Com- brews, Greeks, and Romans, the age at which
pare the Revised Version, which is more children ceased to be minors was fixed by law
exact. Tiie apostle now explains his conclu- or custom, so that a father had nothing to do
sion that " if we are Christ's, then are we . . . with that matter in making his last will and
heirs according to promise." (3:29.) The testament. He could select the guardians for
word translated 'child' is often applied to his children, but could not appoi'nt the day
one who is but an infant, not having learned when the children should become of age.
to speak but it is also applied to one who is
; Some interpreters have supposed that a differ-
older, and here to one who has not reached ent custom prevailed in Galatia, "but this
his majoritj-, so as to be able to speak for him- view," says Lightfoot, "seems to rest on a
self in business atfairs. The English word mistaken interpretation of a passage of Gains
'infant' lias by derivation the same primary I, I 55." But is there an_v need of sui)i>os-
sense, and in common use it signifies a babe, ing that Paul has in mind the case of an heir
but in legal documents it often signifies a whose father is dead? While both were liv-
minor. 'Differeth nothing,' or in no respect, ing the father had supreme authority over the

'from a bondservant' that is, his legal status son, and often committed the son to the care
is substantially that of a slave. He is subject of overseers, and the management of his es-
to those who over him by his
are placed tate to stewards. See Matt. 21 38
: Luke
;

father. This is assumed to be customary by 16 31.


: It is better, then, to assume that the
the language of the verse, and there is no apostle had in view the condition of children
reason to call in question the correctness of whose father was still alive.
this assumption. Doubtless there were points 3. Even so we, when we Avere children,
of diflference between the ordinary' treatment were in bondage under the elements
of minors and the ordinary treatment of (rudbnents) of the world. Does the 'we'
slaves, but both were under the legal control refer to all Christians, whether Jews or Gen-
of others. 'Though he be lord of all.' By tiles by birth, or to Jewish Christians alone?

nature and in his own right he is lord, while Lightfoot, Beet, Boise, and Sieffert hold that
his present condition is like that of a servant. it means all Christians, especially in view of

2. But is under tutors and governors the following context, but ElHcott thinks that
(better, overseers and steioards) until the the primary reference is to converted Jews, as
time (Revised Version, term) appointed of the previous context suggests, while there is a
the father. The distinction between 'over- secondary reference to converted Gentiles, as
seers and stewards {itirp6nov<; koI oixovonou?) ap- the following verses show.
' '
' Certainty on this
52 GALATIANS. [Ch. IV.

4 But when the fulness of the time was come, God 4 the rudiments of the world: Imt when the fulness
1

woman, made under the


sent lorlh liis Son, made of a of the time came, God sent forth his ."^on, horn of a
law, 5 woman, born under the law, that he might redeem
5 To redeem them that were under the law, that we them that were under the law, that we might re-
might receive the adoption of sons.
2 Or, elements.

pjint is beyond our reach, but we incline to hour of supremest need"; and Chrysostom,
the opinion that Paul has in mind Christians that when "men were specially near destruc-
without regard to nationality. This is favored tion, then they were saved." No reverent
by the last part of the verse, 'were held in Christian can doubt that he came at the best
bondage under the rudiments of the world.' moment possible. But the apostle simply
"What, then, is meant by 'the rudiments of the aflBrms that when the pre-Messianic period
world (tix aroixela ToD Kotrfj-ov) ? The word trans- was completed, God sent forth his Son,
'

lated rudiments signifies: (1) The elements of made (horn) of a woman, made {born)
speech, the letters of the alphabet. (2) The under the law. Forth' '

that is, away from
elements, or a, b, c, of any art, science, disci- his presence, or, more accurately, from 'the
pline, or religion. See Heb. 5: 12, 13; Gal. glory which he had with the Father before
4:9; Col. 2 8, 20. (3) The elements of the the world was.' (John 17 5; compare 1 1
:
: :

physical universe. (2 Peter 3


: 10, 12.) (4) The and 1 John 1:2.) The apostle starts with the
heavenly bodies. The word is used in only incarnation, though his words may embrace
the second and third senses by New Testament Christ's appearance among men. Manj' in-
writers. Here it must denote the crude, ele- terpreters look upon this passage as one of a
mentary ideas of religion which were known few in the New Testament which teach the
to the heathen as well as to the Jews, which proper Sonship of the Word (Ad-yos) to the
were in fact the possession of the world of Father before the incarnation. This may
mankind, and Avhich were embodied in ritual have been in the apostle's mind, but I do not
acts testifying of sin, but bringing no peace to see that it tnust have been. Could he not
conscience. The burdensome rites of Juda- have said,
" God sent forth Jesus Christ, born

ism, as they were taught and practiced by of a woman, born under the law," though he
many in Paul's day, were just as powerless did not intend to say that Jesus Chri.st as such
before God as were the superstitious forms of was pre-existent? And if so, could he not
idolatry. Neither of them brought the free- write, 'God sent forth his Son, born of a
dom of sonship to God. Both of them kept. wonian, born under the law,' though he did
the souls of their devotees in bondage and not intend to say that the Word was, strictly
fear. And this was the condition of all who speaking, Son before the incarnation ? Com-
clung to mere legalism before the advent of pare his language in Phil. 2 6, where the pro- :

Christ. noun " who," in the clause " who being in the
4. But Avhen the fulness of the time form of God," represents "Jesus Clirist," the
was come (or, cayne). This language answers only possible antecedent. As Jesus Christ, by
to 'the time appointed by the father' in ver. virtue of his higher nature, existed, before liis
2, and according to Meyer signifies "the mo- humiliation, in the form of God, so God's
ment through which the period of time wliicih Son, the san.e Jesus Christ, by virtue of his
was to pass before the Saviour came was made higher nature, was sent forth from glory, etc.
full." But why so long a period was fixed by There is surely nothing absurd in this inter-
the wisdom of God before the advent of his pretation. The clauses, 'born of a woman,
Son, no one has been able to explain. Some born under the law,' describe certain grctit
have thought it was precisely adapted to the features of the incarnation. The former calls
moral or religious preparation which the attention to his genuine humanity. He was a
world, and especially the chosen people, veritable man. His human nature was derived
needed for the comingof Christ. Others have from the common stock. He partook with his
thought that it was fixed at the hour "when brethren of flesh and blood. But he was also
human nature, having gone through every a Jew, born under the law and subject to all
'
'

form of wickedness, Wtis in need of healing." its requirements.


Theophylact says that Christ came "in the 5. To redeem {that he anight redeem)
Cii. IV.] GALATIANS.
G And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the 6 ceive the adoption of sons. And because ye are
Spirit of his Sun into your hearts, crying, Abba, sons, (Jod sent fortli the f^pirit of his Sou into our
i-'ather^ 7 hearts, crying, Aliba, Fallier. So that thou art no
7 Wherefore thou art no more a servant, but a sou ; longer a bondservant, but a son and if a sou, t.ieu ;

and if a sou, then an heir of God through Christ. an heir through God.

them that were under the law, that we For the adoption of sons is not here spoken of
might receive the adoption of sons. as promised, and it includes far more than
'Them that were uiuiur the law' literally, Adam had before the fall. See EUicott and
'those under law,' meaning, doubtless, the law Meyer, and compare the use of the same verb
of Moses. Yet the Jewish law was not differ- in Luke 16 : 25. ^

ent in principle from any other revelation of 6. And because ye are sons, God hath
God's law. All men are naturally under law, sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your
and by it are condemned as transgressors, un- hearts, crying, Abba, Father. Union with
less thej' have been ransomed by the blood of Christ, sonsiiip to God, and inworking of the
Clirist. For all are guilty of doing what they Holy and the
Spirit are inseparable blessings,
knew to be wrong, and when their consciences apostle here points out their logical orderand
are awake, if at no other time, they see them- relation. The Galatians hud been endued
selves to be under condemnation. Hence, with the Holy Spirit (3 ^. seq.), because they :

their frantic efforts to appease imaginary gods, were sons of God by adoption. It is this
and the hopelessness with which they look Spirit that cries from their hearts through
into the future. Seeing no prospect of deliv- their lips, 'Abba, Father.' In other words, it

erance from the bondage and curse of the law, is this Spirit who gives them filial love and
as it is revealed to them, they long for annihi- confidence, so that they call upon God as their
lation, or, at least, for the rest of existence Father in heaven. Observe, however, that
without feeling. In the last clause, 'that we the language of Paul recognizes the Holy
might receive tlie adoption of sons,' the 'we' Spirit as pertaining to 'his Son,' Jesus Christ.
embraces all Christians, whether Jews or Gen- Compare John 15 : 26; 16 : 7; Rom. 8:9;
tiles. And adoption is the divine act of assign- Phil. 1 : 19; Acts 17 : 7; 1 Peter 1 : 10, 11; 2
ing to believers in Christ the position and Cor. 3 : 17, 18. Hence the filmque, the 'pro-,
privileges of sons. " It is a favorite thought ceeding' of the Holy Spirit from the Son, as
with the apostle that the Christian is the well as from the Father, is manifestl}' the
adopted son of God. He is not merely a pros- teacliing of the divine word. But the proces-
elyte brought from another nation to share the sion spoken of or imj)lied in these passages
privileges of the Jewish people; he is made a cannot properly be understood of an eternal
member of the family of Christ. The custom process within the Trinity, but must be re-
of adoption was familiar both to the Greek ferred to the action of the Spirit in renewing
and the Roman law, and is used by the apos- and .sanctifying men, or in revealing to them
tle, wiio was the Roman citizen of a Greek religious truth.
city, like some other legal notions (Eom. 7: GmI. i : Wherefore (or, .so thnf) thou art no
7.
3:ii;*:i) to c.xpress the relations of God and more {longer) a servant, bnt a son ; and
man." (Jowett.) "Whether the preposition in if a son, then (or, a/.so)an heir of {fJu-ongk)
the Greek word for 'that we might receive' God. By changing the address from 'ye' to
(iiroAa/Sujiei') adoption of sons
signifies that the 'thou,' Paul renders his words more personal
was looked upon by Paul good receivedas a and impressive. For 'thou' means every sep-
in fuliiliment of a promise, or as a good re- arate Christian among the Galatians. In the
ceived back again after being lost, or merely last clause of ver. 5 it is 'we' ; in ver. 6 it is

as a good received from another, cannot easily 'ye'; and now in ver. 7 it is 'thou.' Notice
be decided but the last explanation is open to
; and expansion of the saniv
the reiteration
fewer objections than either of the preceding. thought in Rom. 8: 14-17; "For as many as

'The compound verb aiTo\.ai).fia.veiv occurs in the fol- place, without any implication in Itself that what is re-
lowing pa.sages Luke 15 27 16 25 18 30 23 41
: : -, : ; : ceived is pay or punishment, or had been promised or
; :

Rom. 1 '27; Col.


: 24; 2 John 8, And it seems to me posscs.sed liefore. These tilings depend on the context,
.'i :

that the word signifies to lecehe from some jjcrson or not on the verb.
54 GALATIANS. [Ch. IV
8 Howbeit then, when ye knew not God, ye did ser- 8 Howbeit at that time, not knowing God, ye were
vice unto them which by nature are no gods. 9 in bondage to them that by nature are no gods :but
y But now, after tliat ye have known God, or ratlier now ilial ye have come lo know God, or rather to be
are known ol' Uod, how turn ye again to the weak and known of God, how turn yo back again to the weak
beggarly elements, whereunto'ye desire again to be in and beggarly ' rudiments, whereuuto ye desire to
bondage?

1 Or, elemenU,

are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons God, ye did service unto them which by
of God. For ye received not the spirit of nature are no gods. See the Revised Ver-
bondage again to fear; but ye have received 'Did service' should be rendered, 'did
sion.
the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, bondservice,' or were in bondage,' for this is '

Father. The Spirit itself beareth witness with the proper meaning of the word, and besides
our spirit, that we are children of God: and it carries forward the representation of bond-
if children, then heirs; heirs of God and joint- age emphasized in the preceding cotitext. It
heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with properly characterizes the service. From this
him, that we may be lso glorified together verse it may be inferred that nearly all the
{ivitk him)." AVhat more is it possible for Galatian Christians had been idolaters. In-
Christians to have? deed, the whole Epistle makes upon one the
But why does the apostle say (for this is the impression that its readers were converts from
correct reading), 'an \\e\v through God,' when heathenism. Tliey had been in bondage to
we miglit rather expect him to say 'an heir of those that by nature were not gods, though
God' ? Probably because he was thinking at they were called gods and were served witii
this moment of God as the one by whom every fear. The word 'howbeit' is a somewhat vague
heir to himself, save Christ, had been adopted, word, used in this place to avoid the employ-
because he was thinking more of the privilege ment of 'but' in two successive clauses. The
and glory of being made a son by God's own original (iAXa) is, however, best represented by
gracious act than of the blessedness that would the ordinary equivalent 'but.'
result from the relation thus established. To 9. But now, after that ye have known
think of either is enough to break the heart God, or rather are known of God. The
with joy. word translated 'have known' differs from
The Folly of the Galatians in Re- that translated 'knew' in ver. 8, and may be
ttjrning to the bondage of legalism. rendered, 'have come to know' or 'have rec-
(8-11.)

"In view of this superiority of the ognized." See Revised Version.
Christian Dispensation to the Jewish, Paul 'Or rather are known of God' that is, by
then remonstrates with the Galatians on their God. This clause appears to have been in-
folly and ingratitude in turning back to the serted by the apostle, lest perchance the Gala-
beggarly elements of the past. (4:8-ii.) He tians might assign undue importance to their
adds his most earnest entreaty that they would recognition and knowledge of God, while
return and trust again with him in Christ he God's recognition of them was infinitely more
;

strengthens this appeal by a touching allusion important, as well as more perfect. Compare
to their former affection for him, and distinctly 1 Cor. 8 '2 and 13
: 12. Or if the idea of ap-
:
'

apprises them that in becoming alienated from probation is involved in the word as here
'

him they had been made the dupes of artful used, how instantly does God's knowledge of
men, whose pretended zeal for the law origi- them fill the mind and expel every thought of
nated in a selfish regard for their own ease and their knowledge of him! The latter is the
reputation. (4:12.20.)" (Hackett.) more probable explanation. How turn ye
8. Howbeit then, when ye knew not again to the weak and beggarly elements.

iThe note of Lightfoot on the two words is instruct- these ideas arising out of the stress which yii'w<rici>
ive. " Thus yivuiOKeiv will be used in preference to lays on iheprocfsi of reception. Both words occur very
ctScfat: 1. Where there is reference to some earlier frequently in the First Epistle of St. John, and a com-
state of ignorance, or to some prior on which the
facts parison of the passages where they are used brings out
knowledge is based. 2. Where the ideas of thorough-
'
this distinction of meaning clearly."
DPSs, familiarity,' or of 'approbation,' are involved:
Ch. IV.] GALATIANS. 00
10 Ye observe days, and months, and times, and 10 be in bondage over again ? Ye observe days, and
years. 11 months, and seasons, and years. I am afraid of you,
11 I aiu afraid of you, lest I have bestowed upon you lest by any means 1 have bestowed latjour upon you
labour ill vuiii. iu vaiu.
12 lirelhruii, I beseech you, be as I am; for I am as 12 I beseech you, bretliren, become as I am, for I also
ye are : ye have not injured me at all.

whereunto ye desire again to be in bond- 'Seasons' must mean the periods allotted to
age ? The Revised Version reuds back '
the annual festivals, such as the Passover, the
again,' instead of 'again,' in the first clause of Pentecost, the Feast of the Ingathering, etc.
tills question. The apostle here speaks as if and 'years,' tiie seventh sabbatic year, to-
the process were already begun, as if they gether with the fiftieth or Jubilee. Meyer
were now perpetrating the folly described by and Sieti'ert maintain the opinion that 'months'
hiin. 'The elements' of religion possessed by does not signify new moons, but rather peri-
the Galutians before their conversion are char- ods of a full month, and that certain months
acterized as 'weak,' because they had no of every year were esteemed specially sacred.
power to deliver men from condemnation; This, however, is less probable than the view
and 'beggarly' or 'poor,' because they given above. For if any months were spe-
utterly failed to enrich the soul with any real cially sacred, it must have been because of the
good. And in neither of these respects would religious festivals observed in them, and these
the legal observances of Judaism prove to be festivals are doubtless meant by the word
any better than those of paganism. Tlie Greek 'seasons.' To suppose them twice mentioned
words employed {ird.\iv avuiBei') are inadequately is unnatural. Dr. Boise takes the enumera-
rendered by 'again' in the Common Version. tion to be of a general nature, thus: "Days
'Over again' in the Revised Version is an years: a general expression (which we sliould
improvement, especially if Lightfoot is correct not attempt to define too particularly) with
in pronouncing them "a strong expression to reference to the Jewish observance of times
describe the completeness of their relapse." iind seasons."
But it is better to regard the second word 11. I am afraid of you, lest I have be-
(ava)9ei') as signif^'ing 'afresh' or 'anew,' and stowed upon you labour in vain. Revised
the two words as meaning that their proposed Version: lest by nnij means. This fear reveals
form of legal religion was a fresh start on an the danger to which they were exposed and
old way, a resumption de novo of a religious the deep interest which the apostle felt in their
life which they had known and relinquished. welfare. They were on the point of turning
Compare the use of the second word (ayioBev) away from the true and full gospel which they
in John 3 : 3. had received, to a religion of works that would
10. Ye observe days, and months, and prove their ruin. Should they really do what
times (seasons), and years. This may be they were solicited to do, it would be a renun-
read as a question " Days do ye scrupulously
: ciation of confidence in Christ as their Saviour,
observe and months, and seasons, and years?" and a virtual rejection of the gospel.
But with that change the meaning would Pkbsoxal Appeal to the Galatians. re-
main essentially the same. The Galatians (12-20.) See Hackett's analysis before ver. 8,
seem to have begun to keep some of the Jew- seq.
ish sacred times, perhaps the Jewish Sabbath, 12. Brethren, I beseech you, be as I
thus committing themselves in principle to am ; for I am as ye are. Says Dr.
the keeping of all the rest. The word 'days' Hackett: "A more correct translation . . .

probably refers to the weekly sabbaths and would be: Become as I am. for I also have '

other set days observed by the Jews. See become as ye are, brethren, I beseech you.'
Col. 3 16 and Rom. 14 5, seq. Tliere is no The passage has been treated as needlessly ob-
: :

ground for believing that Paul embraced the scure. We have the key which unlocks the
Lord's Day in this category. The word meaning in 1 Cor. 9:20,21. "Unto the Jews,"
'months' is commonly supposed to signify in Paul says there, "I became as a Jew, that I

this place neio moons that is, the first day of might gain the Jews; ... to them that are
every month. See Num. 10 10; '28 11 Isa. without law (I became) as without law. that
: : ;

1: 13; Hosea 2: 11 1 Chron. 23 31 Ts. 81 3. I might gain them that are without law"
; : ; :
56 GALATIANS. [Ch. IV.
13 Ye know how through infirmity of the flesh I 13 avi hucomp asye are. Ye did me no wrong but ye :

preaclied tht; gospel unto jou at tlie first. know that because of an infirmity ot ihe flesh I

(ifdjuous). Meyer's translation fulfills every ing the gospel in Galatia was not included in
linguistic and logiciil condition of the sentence, the plan for his second missionary journey.
and represents the view of the best scholars: But owing to a bodily disease, which is proba-
'Werdet wieich; denn audi ich bin vvie ihr bly alluded to in 2 Cor. 12 7, seq., he was :

geworden.' " Become ye as I for I also have constrained to remain for a time in that prov-
;

become as ye." We merely repeat have be- ince where he preached tiie gospel with great
'

come' {iyevoixriv} in the sccond clause from be- success. AVe find it impossible to identify
come (yicco-fle) in the first, and supply the sub- his 'infirmity of the flesh' with any particu-
stantive verb. For 'I also' (xiyio), equivalent lar form of disease, though it was evidently
to / 071 tny part, compare 1 Cor. 11 1. The painful and humiliating. Perhaps it was all
:

sense, then, is " Become in your relinquish- the more so, because he could often obtain
:

ment of Jewish rites as I am in that respect; mii'aculous healing for others, though not, in
for I also, who am a Jew, and consequently this case, for himself. ''The thorn in the
attached to such rites by every tie of natural flesh, a messenger of Satan," was not removed,
sympathy, have forsaken them, and become as even at his thrice-repeated prayer, but such

you are that is, have placed myself upon the grace was given him that 'his strength was
Gentile ground, which is that of the non-ob- made perfect in weakness,' and he was able
servance of the Jewish Law. It is but reason- 'to glory in his infirmities.' It is not indeed
able, therefore, that I should ask you (Seo^iai demonstrable that he refers to the same in-
iiaMi/) to concur with me, and thus be simply firmity here and in 2 Cor. 12, but it seems ex-
true to your own natural position, when I, ceedingly probable. The two letters were
against every bias of birth and education, written about the same time, and the language
have cast aside the forms of Judaism, and used in both might naturally be applied to one
assimilated to the Gentiles." The other possi- and the same disease.
ble explanation would be: "Become as I am, A few interpreters have urged with much
because I also was (once) as ye are (in your zeal the opinion that it was a disease affecting

present status) that is, I was under the Jew- the eyes, and have appealed to the blindness
ish Law and was trusting in obedience to it produced by the light from heaven at his con-
for justification beff)re God, as you now pro- version (Acts9:3, 8) as favorable to this opinion.
pose to do." But this does not suit the con- But that blindness, however caused, was healed
nection as well as the first explanation. Ye by miracle (Acts9: n, is), and it is scarcely prob-
have not injured me at all. Revised Ver- able that thisdivinecure was imperfect. They
sion : Ye did me no wrong. Paul, however have also discovered in Acts 13 9 14 9 21 3 : ; : ; :

grieved with their distrust of his Lord, had no a slight indication of imperfect sight, though
reason to complain of any wrong done to him- the same expression is frequently used of those
self Far from it. He remembered with joy who are not presumed to have weak eyes or a
the reception which they gave to him and to his dim sight (see Luke 4: 20; 22:5G; Acts 1:10;
message wlien he was first among them. They 3:4; 6:15; 7:55; 10:4; 11:6), and cannot
had welcomed him with an open and cordial be relied upon as evidence that the apostle's
spirit, with impulsive generosity and confi- vision was impaired. Reference has also been
dence. made in support of this hj'pothesis to Gsil.
13. Ye know how through infirmity of 4:15; 6:11, on the ground that ophthalmia
the flesh I preached the gospel unto you would account for what is said in both places;
at the first. The Revised Version is more but it will appear upon examination that there
accurate: But ye know that because of an in- is no need of this hypothesis to account for the
jirmity of the fJesh I preached the gospel unto language of eitheT passage. Hence the argu-
you the first time. Literally: 'the former ments in support of the conjecture that Paul's
time,' for he had preached among them at two " thorn in the flesh " was a painful inflamma-
different times, as we haveseen. (i:9) This tion and weakness of eyes "seem to melt
verse preserves to us a singularly interesting away under the light of careful examination."
fact respecting the apostle's ministry. Preach- (Lightfoot.)
Ch. IV.] GALATIANS. 57
14 Aud
uiy tciuptation which was in my flesh ye de- 14 preueht-d the you the tirst time: and
go.-.|)el iinio '

Bpised nut, nor rejected but received me aa au angel


; that which wan a tiiuptalion to you in my llesh ye
o:' God, errn as Christ Jesus. despised nol, nor ^leji^eled; but nceived me as an
15 W
here is then (lie blessedness ye spake of? for I hear 15 angel of (iod, (v-h as Christ Jesus. Where then is
you record, that, if it had hem po>silile, ye would have that gratulation ^of yourselves? for 1 bear you wit-
plucked out your own eyes, and have given theiu to uie. ness, that, if possible, ye would have piucued out
11) Am
I therefore become your enemy, because I tell 16 your eyes and given them to me. iSo then 1 be- am
you the truth?

1 Ot. former 'I Gr. $pat out 3 Or, of yours.

The conjecture of Lightfoot, supported by a self-felicitation ?Your boasting of happiness,


parallel account coiiccriiiiig a malady with in view of my
presence and preaching among
which Alfred the Great was afflicted, ''that it you ? Hits it vanished so .soon ? Have you
was of the nature of epilepsy," must not be no longer any heart to congratulate yourselves
accepted as more than a conjecture, though it on hiiving tiie gospel ministered to you, or on
is very ingeniously defended. See note on having been accepted in Christ and made
"St. Paul's Infirmity in the Flesh,'' p. 169, seq. heirs of God?' But if the other reading be
14. And my temptation whicli was in preferred, the sense will naturally be: "Of
my flesh ye despised not, nor rejected.
what sort, then, was your self-felicitation?
Revised Version is better: And that loJdch your calling yoVirselves happy, because of my
was a tem-ptation to you in, my flesh, ye de. ministry of the gospel among you? How
spised not, nor rejected. A more literal ren- shallow and vain it must have been Or, !

dering would be: Your trial in iny flesh ye how strange and inexplicable in the light of
'

despised not, nor spurned (or loathed). The your present course!' The former reading
'

reading 'yo?<r trial' is much better supported and explanation are preferable, we think, to
than 'my trial.' 1 So the apostle's disease ap- the latter.'' For I bear you record that, if
pears to have been of such a nature as to test it had been possible, ye would have
their candor and regard for him, of such a plucked out your own eyes and have given
nature that he feared it would destroy confi- them to me. Here the Revised Version is
dence and excite disgust. Yet it did not. more accurate For I bear you witness, that, :

But received me as an angel of God, even if possible, ye would have plucked out your
as Christ Jesns. That is, they listened to eyes and given them to me. The emphasis
him as if he were a messenger of God to them, belongs to the word 'eyes,' not to the pronoun
as if he were Christ Jesus himself. lie could 'your,' and therefore 'own' should not be
not have been received with more respect; added in translating the Greek. The 'eyes'
tliey welcomed his message as divine and him- are mentioned because of their preciousness.
self as Ciirist's ambassador to them. The Compare Ps. 17 8; Zech. 2 8. Paul means : :

apostle recalls their treatment of himself and to say that the Galatians were at that time
of his 'good news' with the most cordial grat- ready to do anything in their power for him.
itude. This is characteristic of him, and in Tlieir love was then ardent and apparently
this he is an example whicli every Christian free from any tincture of selfishness or su.'^pi-
should seek to follow. oion. Notwithstanding his infirmity in the
15. Where is then the blessedness ye flesh those were blessed days to the apostle,
spake of? The text of this clause is uncer- and he feels that a reference to them must
tain. If we adhere to the best supported read- touch the hearts of his Galatian children.
ing, the sense is this: 'Where then is your 16. Am I therefore become your ene-
1 Lachmann, Tischendorf, Westcott and Hort, and the tuted for Ti>, "especially as .several of the Greek com-
Canterbury Revisers insert 'your' in the text with mentators who read ti explain it by irov," while it is
X * A B I) * F G, and the Vulgate and Coptic Versions. hard to account for the displacing of iroC by tU. Per-
Besides, as the more difficult reading, it would not have haps the great preponderance of manuscript authority
bren likely to take the place of an easier one. should be considered decisive in favor of the easier
2 The reading nov ovv is supported by the earliest reading in such a case as this. Yet if it were necessary
MSS. X A B C F G P, and is accepted by Tischendorf, to adopt the more difficult reading ti ov>', the meaning
Tregellcs, Lachmann, Westcott and Hort,Siefrert. Light- niighl still he (as Lightfoot insists),-" What has become
foot and Meyer supj/ose that the original text was of your rejoicing? Where has it vanished Cunder-
how could be substi- standing "
nt ovi', since it is easy to see iroC <7Ti) 7
58 GALATIANS. [Ch. IV.

17 They zealously affect you, but not well yea, they ;


I 17 come your enemy, ^ by telling you the truth ? They
would exclude you, that ye might atfect them. zealously seek you in uo good way nay, they desire
;

18 But i/ is good to be zealously atiected always in a 18 to shut you out, that ye may seek them. But it
good tkiitfj, ana not only when I am present wiih you. is good to be zealously sought in a good matter at all
1.) My little cliildieii, of whom 1 travail in birth times, and not only when I am present with you.
again until Christ be formed in you, 19 My little children, of whom I am again in travail

1 Or, hy dealing truly with you.

my, because I tell you the truth? thtit those from whom tlie Judtiists wished to
Com-
piire tlie Kevised Version So then
: am
I exclude their followers were also teachers.
become your enemy ? etc. The apostle discerns 18. But it is good to be zealously
in them a change of feeling toward himself as affected always in a good thing, and not
well as toward the gospel which he had always only when I am with you. If we have cor-
preached, such a change that they treated him rectly exphiined ver. 17, the Kevised Version
as if he were an enemy rather than their spir- should also be followed in this But it is good :

itual father. Because I tell you the truth


'
to be zealously sought in a good matter at all
is a present or imperfect participle (dAjjeeOioi'), times, a7id not only when I am present ivith
and might be tr.inslated 'by speaking to you you. Thus Paul approves of their being
the truth,' or even 'by dealing truly with sought in a good ctiuse, or, better still, in a
you.' The former is generally preferred, as good way (EllicLtt); for they had been sought
the apostle had dealt with them as a preacher most earnestly by himself when he was pres-
and teaclier, and as speaking truth is the or- ent with them, and they were even now
dinary sense of the word. "To what period sought by him when he was not present in
does the participle refer? Certainly not (a) person, but was making his appeal by letter.
to the present Epi-^^tle, as the apostle could not According to Sieffert-Meyer the sense is as fol-
now know what the effect [of it] would be lows: While those Judaists do not seek j-ou '

(Schott); nor (6) to i\ie first visit, when the in a good way, it is nevertheless good that one
state of feeling (ver. is) was so very different, be sought in a good cause, and therefore good
but (c) to the second (acu 18:23), when Judaism that ye should be sought by me in good at all
had probably made rapid advances." (EUi- times, and not merely when I tim with you in
cott. That visit took place not long after the person.' No other explantition of the verso
)

scene at Antioch, described in 2 11-21. : is so satisfactory as this. The obvious mean-


17. They zealously affect you, but not ing of the Ctmimon Version is very different;
well; yea, they Avould exclude you, that namely, that Paul approves of their being
ye may affect them. The Revised Version zealous themselves in a good causeat all times,
substitutes 'seek' for 'affect,' 'in no good and not merely when they tire stimuhited by
way' for 'not well,' and 'nay' for 'yea.' his presence. This is unsatisfactory, (1) be-
There appears to be no sufficient reason for cause it assigns to the verb 'to be zealously
rendering the Greek word (iAAaj either 'yea' affected a sense which it cannot have in the '

or 'nay,' for the usual translation 'but' ful- preceding verse, and (2) because the words
fills every claim of the context, thus: They 'good' and 'in a good thing' naturally con-
zealously seek you in no good way, but they nects this verse with the first clause of ver.
desire to shut you out, that ye inay seek them. 17, and not with the last. Ellicott's transla-
The word translated 'zealously seek' evi- tion brings out very clearly the thought of
dently signifies 'pay court to.' But froin ver. 17, 18: "They pay you court in no
what do the Judaists desire to exclude their honest way; yea, they desire to exclude .you,
Gtilatian adherents? Probably "from other that ye may pay them court. But it is good
teachers who do not belong to their clique, as to be courted in honesty at all times, and
Paul and those agreeing with him" (Sieffert), not only when I am present with you."
or "from Paul and that sounder portion of 19. My little children, of whom I travail
the church with which he in thought as.soci- in birth again until Christ be formed in
ates himself" (Eilicott. ) We prefer the you. The Revised Ver.-ion says: 'I am
former, because the word 'them in the clause again in travail for 'I tnivail in birth again.'
' '

'that ye may seek them' probably refers to Paul compares his deep solicitude and painful
them in their role as teachers, and Suggests anxiety for the Galatians to the feelings of a
Ch. IV.] GALATIANS. 59
20 I desire to be |>reseiit with yoii now, aud tocbange 20 until Christ be formed in you yea, I could wish to
my voice; lor I stand in doubt of yon. be present with you iiott, and to change my voice ;
.il Tell me. ye thai desire to be under the law, do ye for 1 am perplexed about you.
not hear the law ? 21 Tell me, ye that desire to be under the law, do ye

uiollier in tfavail. He had "because I


perplexed about you." Liter-
once before ex- am
])erienced a similar anxiety in their behalf, ally, 't you,' winch is not good English,
namely, at tlie time of their conversion. Now though the preposition 'in' points to the ob-
he experiences the same again, as he waits for ject or sphere in which his perplexity takes its
their return to Clirist. This return he speaks rise.
of as if it were a new l)irth. Yet it would be Conclusion of the Argument by a Bib-
pressing his wordS unduly to find in thein the lical Allegory. (21-31.) "This second
doctrine of a "second conversion," in the part of the discussion he closes by employing
modern sense of the expression. They had the history of Abraham and his family as an
indeed turned away from the simplicity of allegory or illustrtition of the two systems
the faith, and had begun to look upon legal which he has been considering. Thesubjoined
works as necessary to salvation". At the same are the main points of the comparison which
time, as we may safely conclude, the ardor of he institutes here. Judaism, or the legal sys-
their love to Christ had diminished. In such tem, of which Hagar, wiio was a bondwoman,
circumstances their return to hi in would be may be considered as a type, imposes a spir-
the renewal of their Christian life; and he itual bondage on those who adhere to it;
would then be formed in them, the hope of wheroiis Christianity, wiiieh is a Free Dispen-
glory. a wonderful tenderness and sation, and hence fitly represented by Stirah,
Tliere is

faith expressed by these words of the great who was a freewoman, libertites men from
apostle, especially if we ascribe to him in this this bondage, and makes them the children
passage the use of John's endearing word, of God. Again, as Ishmael was born in a
'little children.' But there is some reast)n to mere natural way, so tiie Jews are a mere
doubt whether he wrote tliis word. It may natural seed; but Christians, who obtain jus-
be due to an error of transcription.^ Yet the tification in conformity with the promise made
singular fitness of the affectionate diminutive to Abraham, are the true promised seed, even
to the context pleads in its support, as well as as Isaac was. Further, as in the typical his-
the possibility that a transcriber may have tory, Ishmael persecuted Isaac, the cliild of
thought the word 'children' Ptiuline, and the promise, so it is not to be accounted strange
word 'little children' Johannine. Westcott that, under the gospel, the natural seed, that
and Hort, Ellicott, Lightfoot, Sieftert-Meyer, is, the Jews, should persecute the spiritual
and a majority of scholars retain the diminu- is. Christians. And, finally, as Isaac
seed, that
tive. was acknowledged as the true heir, but Ish-
20. I desire to be present with you now, mael was set aside, so must it be as to the dif-
and to change my voice ; for I stand in ference which exists between Jews and be-
doubt of you. The Revision reads: " Fea, I lievers. The former, or, in other words, tho.se
could wish to be present vnth you now, and to who depend on their own merit for obtaining
change my voice; for I am perplexed about the favor of God, will be rejected; while those
you." Ellicott translates: "I could indeed who seek it by faith shall realize the blessing.

wish," etc. that is, if it were possible, and (4:21.23.)" (Hackett.)
this represents appropriately what is implied 21. Tell me, ye that desire to be under
by the imperfect tense of the verb. He feels the law, do ye not hear the law? The
tliat they cannot understand him as they word law appears to be used in the first clause
would, if he were there speaking to them vivo of tlie Mosaic Code, and in the second of the
voce. If he were with them, he could use Pentateuch in which that code was written.
more gentleness and less severity. His tone Those addressed are supposed to be inclined
could be changed. And the reason why he to accept the doctrine of the Judaizing teach-
could wish this is expressed in the last clause. ers, and to rely upon obedience to the law as

1 Forannmberofthebe.stuncialshflvechildpn (T<ci'a\ I wliile the lr.<!S important uncialsX* A C D'" E K L P,


instead of ' little children ' (xeKua) p. j^., {< * BD*F G, '
have '
little children '
[rticvia).
60 GALATIANS. [Ch. IV.

22 For it is written, that Abraliam had two sons, the 22 not hear the law? For it is written, that Abraliiim
one by a bondmaid, the oiher by a tree woman. had two sous, one by tlie handmaid, and one by the
23 Jiiit he iflw was of the bondwoman was born after 23 treewouutu. Howbtit the sun by the handmaid is
tlie flesh
; but he of the freewomau was liy promise. born after the llesh but the sun by the freewomau
;

24 Which things are an ullef;ory for these are the


: 24 is burn through promise. Which things contain an
two covenants; tlie one from the mount Sinai, which allegory for these women are two covenants oiie
: ;

gcndereih to bondage, which is Agar. from mount Sinai, bearing children unto bondage,
2.) ior this Agar is mount Sinai in Arabia, and 25 which is ilagar. i Now this Hagar is mount Simi,
answereth to Jerusalem which now is, and is iu bond- in Arabia, and ausweieili to the Jerusalem that
age with her children. now is: for she is iu bondage with her children.

1 Many aucieot autboritie^ read For Sinai is a mountain in Arabia.

well as upon the work of Christ as a ground "suggests something besideg what is heard."
of acceptance with God. Whether 'do ye The expression '
which things' refers not only
not hear the law?' means 'do ye not hear it to the facts of the birth of the two sons, but
read in your meeting? or do ye not hearken
" '
also to the principal features of the narrative
to it, giving ear to what it really says?' is as a whole and in geiienil. For these are
perhaps doubtful. The question, however, is
the two covenants rather, these women are,
quite as striking, if understood in the former or represent.! two covenants. The 'for' makes
way. In that case, the apostle expresses by this sentence explanatory of the preceding
it his surprise that they can wish to be under statement. 'Which things contain an alle-
the law after having even heard it read, to gory ; for these women mean two covenants.'
say iKjthing of having penetrated by earnest CoiTipare Matt. 13 : 39; 26 : 26-28; Gen. 40 :

attention its deeper meaning. In either case, 26, 27. The one from the Mount Sinai,
however, the sense is pertinent. which gendereth to bondage, which is
23. For it is written, that Abraham had Agar. 'The' before Mount Sinai is wrongly
two sons, the one by a bondmaid, the inserted by the translators, and the Revised
other by a free woman. Compare Genesis, Version is, on the whole, better: One from
chiipters 16 and 21. The Revised Version is Mount Sinai, bearing children mito bondage,
more litenil: 'One by the handmaid, and one whicfi is Hagar. "The Sinaitic Covenant is
by the free woman,' the word 'handmaid' be- allegorically identical with Hagar." (Sieftert-
ing regarded as synonymous with the word Meyer.
'bondmaid.' 25. For this Agar is mount Sinai in
23. But he {whoiinis) of the bondwoman Arabia. A
very difficult sentence, trans-
was borp after the flesh ; but he of the lated as follows in the Bible Union Revision:
free woman was by promise. Here the " (for the word Hagar is Mount Sinai in Ara-
Common Version translates 'bondwoman,' bia)." The article before Hagar in the Greek
instead of 'bondmaid,' in the preceding verse. text is not feminine, as it must have been if
Uniformity of rendering would have been the reference were to the bondmaid of Abra-
better. Again, the Revisers have supplied ham, but neuter, as if pointing to the word
the word 'the son,' instead of 'who was," and itself, or to its meaning and use in Arabia.
of 'he,' which is an improvement: 'Howbeit The noun Hagar, Paul says, is equivalent in
the son bj'^ the handmaid is born after the Arabia, or among the Arabs, to the name
flesh, but the son by the free woman (is born) Mount Sinai. "Paul informs us," says Dr.
through promise.' The birth of Ishmael had Hiickett, "in Gal. 4 25, that one of the names :

in it nothing indicative of divine intervention, of Sinai in Arabia was Hagar. No other


nothing contrary to the course of nature; but writer mentions such a name, and the apostle
that of Isaac was due to the promise of God, may be supposed to have learned the ftict
and was brought to pass by virtue of that during his visit to that country, (cai. i:i7.)
promise, against the ordimiry course of nature. This contact between the two passages is cer-
24. Which things are an allegory or, tainly remarkable." "'I went into Arabia,'
according to the Revised Version, contain an saj's St. Paul, in describing his conversion to
allegory., which seems to be a just interpreta- the Gentiles. It is tiselcss to speculate, yet
tion of the original word. For that word sig- when, in a later chapter of the same epistle,
nifies to express one thing under the figure of the words fall upon ourownears, 'This Hagar
another. "An allegory," says Hesychius, is mount Sinai in Arabia,' it is difficult to re-
Ch. IV.] GALATIANS. 61

2?; But Jerusalem which is above is free, which is the 2G But the Jerusalem tljat is above is free, which is
mother of us all. 27 our mother. For it is written,
27 For it is written, Rejoice, thou barren that bearest Kejoiee, thou barren that bearest not
not; break I'.jrtli ami cry, thou that travailest not: for Biealv forth and cry,tliou that travailest not:
tlie desolate hatli many more cliildreu than she which For ni();-e are the children of tlie desolate than
hath a husbind. of her who liath the husband.
28 Now we, brethren, as Isaac was, are the children 2S Now 1 we, brethren, as Isaac was, are children of
of promise.

1 Mauy aacieut authorities read yt.

sist may have stood Compare 21:2. 'The Jerusalem above' is


the thought that he, too,
upon the rocks of and heard from Arab therefore a figurative expression, equivalent
Sinai,
lips the often repeated 'Hagar,' 'rock,'
to the heavenly Jerusalem or the new Jerusa-
suggesting the double meaning to which the lem, conceived of as tiie home of believers in
text alludes.'' (8tanley,"8inai and Palestine," Christ. Whicli is the mother of us all
p. 50.)' And aiiswereth to {tJie) Jerusalem more accurately: which, is our 7nother ; for

Avhicli now is or the present Jerusalem. the word 'all' is an addition to tbe original
'Answereth' is in the row or rank with, text. In the Hebrew idiom, a city is spoken
stands in the same category with. But what of as the mother of her citizens. Her condi-
is the subject of this verb? Is it 'one' (cov- tion is theirs, and their condition is hers.
enant) from Mount Sinai, or Mount Sinai They are born in her, and are often called in
where the covenant was established, or Hagar a collective sen.se her 'daughter.' (is:i.52:2;
the bondwoman who is figuratively identical 62 : 11 ; Jer. 4 : :il ; 6:3; Micah 4 : 5.)

with the covenant and with Sinai ? The next 27. For it is written. Rejoice, thou
clause is an argument in favor of holding the barren, that bearest not: break forth
subject of this verb to be Hagar. For she is and cry, thou that travailest not: for the
in bonda;e. The Kevised Version of that desolate hath many more children than
clause is correct namely, for she is in bond-
; she which hath a husband. Addressed to
age with her children. The present Jerusalem confirm the preceding statement tlmt the free
with her children are the Jewish people in Jerusalem is our mother. The last clause is
bondage to the law, just as Hagar was in translated as follows in the Revised Version:
bondage with her children. "for more are the children of the desolate
26. But {the) Jerusalem Avhich is above than of her which hath the husband" and ;

is free. We
insert the article from the Greek by the Bible Union Version " because many :

text before Jerusalem, in order that the con- are the children of the desolate, rather than
trast between 'the Jerusalem which now is' of her who has the husband." Hence the
jind 'the Jerusalem which is above' may De meaning must be either that, while both
fully preserved. In his Epistle to the Philip- have children, those of the former are many '

Paul declares that "our citizensiiip is


))ians, but those of the latter are not; or that, while
in heaven" (^:2o); in the Epistle to the He- both have children, those of the former are
brews it is written: "but ye are come unto many, even more than those of the latter.
mount Zion, and unto the city of the living Tlio words are quoted from the Greek Version
God, the heavenly Jerusalem" (12:22); and in of Isaiah 54:1, a passage whose Me.<sianic char-
the Book of Revelation it is said: "I will acter was generally admitted. It is the Jeru-
writeupon him the name ... of the city of salem above, the New Covenant, represented in
my God, the new Jerusalem, which cometh the allegory by Sarah, that is to be so fruitful.
down out of heaven fif)m my God." (Sfiz.) 28. Now we, brethren, as Isaac was.

1 Yet the text is doubtful. Instead of to yap (X CF Paul. For the M.SS. in favor of the insertion are decid-
GKL P), TO Se is found in -several of the best MSS. But edly superior to those in favor of the omission of "Ayap,
the meaning of the sentence is about the same wliich- and the reading is also a more difficult one.
ever conjunction is proferred. Tischendorf has the The reading instead of 'and,'
2 'for,' is required by
former, Westcott and Hort the latter. A fjai n, ".Vvap BCD
the best MS.*^. (X A * FG P) and several of the
is read before 2i>'a in A B D E K L P, but is wanting in
early revisions (Snhidio, Memphilic, Syriao Peschito),
K C F G and the later Fathers. On internal as well as and with this reading the natural stibject of the verb is
external grounds, it seems necessary to consider this '
the i)resent Jerusalem.'
word a part of the te.Kt as it came froiu the hand of
62 GALATIANS. [Ch. IV.

29 But as then he that was born after the flesh perse- 29 promise. But as then he that was born after tlie
cuted him Ikat was burn after the Spirit, even so it is flesh persecuted bim t/iat was born alter the Spirit,
niiw. 30 even so it is now. Howbeit what saiih the Script-
:iO Nevertheless what saith the Scripture? Cast out ure? Cast out the bandniiid and her son for the :

the bomhvouian ami her sou: lor the son of the bond- sou of the handmaid shall not inherit with the son
woman shall not be heir with tlie son of the free woman. 31 of the freewoman. Wherefore, brethren, we are not
31. So then, ijret'iren, we are not cliildren of the children of a handmaid, but of the freewoman.
bondwoman, but of the free.

are the children of promise. A more pre- ing its counterpart in the regeneration of men
cise rendering of tlie Greek text would omit by the Spirit of God.
'the' bef(jre 'children.' And it is also note- 30. Nevertheless what saith the Script-
worthy that 'promise' is rendered emphatic ure? Cast out the bondwoman and her
by tlie position which is given it in the sen- son: for the son of the bondwoman shall
tence. The Bible Union Revision follows an- not be heir with the son of the freewoman.
other text, and translates the verse But ye, The words of Sarah quoted in this verse are
:
'

brethren, after the manner of Isaac, are chil- called 'the Scripture,' or what 'the Scripture
dren of promise.' ^ The essential meaning of saith,' as if they were a disclosure of the
the verse is the same whichever pronoun is divine will. (Gen. -21:9.) And this they cer-
correct. There is, however, some reason on tainly were for, though grievous to Abraham
;

the ground of textual authority to prefer ye,' (see ver. 11), they were distinctly approved
'

and this direct application of the thought to by Jehovah (ver. 12): "In all that Sarah saith
tiie Galatians must be pronounced very nat- unto thee, hearken unto her voice; for in

ural and forcible. Isaac shall thy seed be called." The import
29. But as then he that was born after of this in Paul's discussi(jn is very plain. Not
the fleish persecuted him that was born only are those who simply trust in Christ
after the Spirit, even so it is now. The without the works of the law accepted and
language of this verse probably refers in the justified by God, but those who rely upon
first instance to Gen. 21 9, where Sarah is
: legal ordinances and service for divine favor
said to have seen Ishmael 'mocking,' or, lit- are rejected. The law must give place to the
erally, laughing. Perhaps the laughter was gospel; Judaism must be severed from Chris-
mocking laughter. "As Abraham had laughed tianity. Those who are insisting with fanat-
for joy concerning Isaac, and Sarah had ical zeal upon the necessity of circumcision to
laughed incredulously, so now Ishmael laughed salvation, are Ishmaelites, not Israelites, sons
in derision, and probablj' in a persecuting of the bondwoman and not sons of the free-
and tyrannical spirit." (Bp. Harold Browne, woman. Yet at this very time the Judaizing
in the " Bible Commentary.") Compare Gen. party in the churches of Palestine was preter-
21 6 and Ezek. 23 32.
: The tense of the verb naturally active tind apparently successful.
:

'persecuted' (iSiwKev) represents the action as How absolute was the apostle's confidence in
in progress or continuous, not as completed; the truth of his gospel
and it is conceivable that Paul regarded the 31. So then, brethren, Ave are not chil-
event described in Gen. 21 :9 as only the first dren of the bondwoman, but of the free.
manifestation of a hostilitj' which had been A better text is followed bj' the Revisers
characteristic of the Ishmaelite line ever si nee. Wherefore {Si6, instead of opa), brethren, we are
Compare Ps. 83 7 1 Chron. 5 10, 19. Born not children of a (not 'the') handmaid {bond-
: ; :
'

after the fli-sh' means born in a natural man- woman), but of the freewoman. 'A bond-
ner; 'born after the Spirit' means born in a woman' is equivalenUto any bondwoman, be-

superniitural manner that is, in accordance cause there are manj' legal systems by which
with a promise given and fulfilled by the men are kept in bondage. ^The freewoman,'
Sjtirit of God. It is plain that Paul looked because there is but one cftvenant of promise,
upon the extraordinary birth of Isaac as hav- represented in the allegory by Sarah. How

'This text supported by excellent manuscripts


is and Hort, with the Canterbury Revisers, prefer 'we.'
(B D*F 67 ** and others), thouph not by the
Ct 6. 17. 61. It is diflicult to decide between these readings, but the
most important early versions. Lachmann, Tischen- occurrence of the first and 31
per.son plural in verses 26
dorf, Trcgelles, SiefFert-Meyer, Ellicott, l.ightfoot, Boise, may have led transcribers to change the ye into we
'
'
'

und many others accept the reading 'ye,' but Westcott in this intervening verse.
Ch. v.] GALATIANS. 63

CHAPTER V.
STAND fast tlierefoie in the liberty wherewith Christ 1 For freedom did Christ set us free: stand fast
hath made us free, aud be nut eutungled again witli therefore, aud be not entangled again in a yoke of
tlie yoke of bondage. bondage.

highly did tlie apostle prize the freedom of tainTheik Free Christian Status, and
Christian and ln)pe!
life NOT BY Circumcision to Bind Themselves
Here may be found the last step in Paul's TO Keep the Whole Law.
argument for tlie gospel as revealing a perfect Stand fast therefore in the liberty
1.

way of life. The remainder of his Epistle is wherewith Christ hath made us free, etc.
more practical than argumentative or contro- This translation follows a Greek text, not so
versial. But it is no less instructive on that well supported by manuscript authority as the
account: it is full of thought, some of which text followed in the Revised Version With :

is complementary to what has been already freedom did Christ set us free; stand fast
written. therefore, etc. Still better is the marginal
rendering, For freedom,' etc' And the word
'

Ch. 5 : "The apostle here exhorts the Gala- 'freedom' is emphatic. Y or freedom, and not
tians to maintain their liberty in Chri.st, be- for pupilage or any inferior state, did Christ
cause the surrender of it would deprive them set us free/ His deliverance of us from bond-
of all benefit from the gospel, and render them iige to the law was for the purpose of estab-
debtors to keep the whole law in order to be lishing us in the family of God as sons and
saved. (1-6.) He reminds them of the sad heirs. Yet none of these translations, except
contrast between their present state and the the first, preserves the article before 'freedotn,'
commencement of their Christian career; though it belongs to the original text. Paul
cautions them against the danger even of in- evidently refers to the liberty of which he has
cipient error, and reminds them how absurd been speaking in the previous chapter that is,
it was own example in excuse Christian liberty, and his meaning would be
to appeal to his
for their perversion of the rite of circum- more exactly expressed by retaining the article
cision. (7-12.) He expresses the wish that and inserting an explamitory phrase: 'For
those who were misleading them might be cut the freedom' [of sons and heirs] 'did Christ
off from all connection with them, and be set us free.' Tlie same result might be secured
accounted as outcasts and heretics. (12.) He by translating the article tJiis: For this free- '

then turns to warn them again.st an abuse of dom did Christ set us free.' But it is, perhaps,
their Christian liberty, enjoins upon them an better to forego perfect clearness of statement
observance of the law as a rule of duty, the than to purchase it by an addition to the origi-
essence of which is love, and the requirement nal text, or by a free rendering of the article.
of wiiich in that respect they would be enabled To introduce his exhortation, the apostle gath-
to fulfill by following the dictates of the Spirit. ers up into a single sentence the result of his
(13-18.) To enable them to judge whether discussion, giving the place of emphasis to the
they are actuated by the Spirit, or an opposite word 'freedom' 'With (or, for) the freedom :

principle, he enumerates, first, some of the (just spoken of) did Christ set us free; stand
works of the flesh, and then the characteristic fast, therefore, and be not entangled again in
fruits of the Spirit. (19-26.)" (Hackett.) a yoke of bondage.' * Entangled,' or, en- '

1-G.TheGalatians Exhorted to Main- snared, is sometimes u.sed with reference to a


1 Far die Freiheit hat uns Christus be/reit, is Weizsac- in XABC*DEFGP and many cursives, or in the
ker's translation. Compare Buttniann (Thayer's), pp_ Vulgate, Memphitic, Sahidic, Armenian, Gothic, or
178, 179. Syriac (Peschito) Versions. Only Cc K L and many
2 The text of the first clause is by no means certain, cursives have it. Nearly the same manuscripts and
yet the readiiij; approved by the Revised Version, West- versions have this conjunction after (rrijiceTe. The rela-
cott and Ilort, Tischendorf, Meyer, Schaff, and others, tive jj is wanting in N A B C D* P and present in
b et c
jjjjfj niany cursives. It is ea-sy to see how
is sustained by a clear preponderance of testimony. It J) ]^ y^

differs from the Tcxtus Receptus by placing ovv after might be inserted by a transcriber for the
this relative
CTTijictTe instead of eAeuSepta, by having no relative jj,
sake of rendering the language of the apostle more per-
and by reading i^mo? instead of xptaTos )/nos.
xP"''''os spicuous.
The ovv is not foun.'. in the first clause after Awd<pia
64 GALATIANS. [Ch. V.

2 Behold, I Paul say unto you, that if ye be circum- 2 Behold, I Paul say unto you, that, if ye receive
cised, Christ shall profit you nothing. 3 circumcision, Christ will profit you nothing. Yea,
3 i'or I testify again to every man that is circum- I testify again to every man that receiveth eircum-.
cised, that he is a debtor to do the whole law. 4 cision, that he is a debtor to do the whole law. Ye
4 Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever are i severed from Christ, ye who would be justified
of you are justitied by the law ye are fallen from
;

grace.

1 Gr., brought to nought.

net in which one is caught and held; and here obligation to obey every part of it. He that
a yoke of religious bondiige is evidently con- trusts f9r salvation in his obedience to any
ceived as something in which the Galatians requirement of the law, makes his salvation
were liable to be cauglit and held captive. depend on obedience to everj' requirement of
Formerly they had been in bondage to the the law. "For whosoever shall keep the
superstitious fears and rites of heathenism; whole law, and yet stumble in one point, is
now they were in danger of accepting the no become guilty of all."' James 2 10, Revised :

less useless and burdensome ritual of Judaism. Version compare Gal. 3 10. The adverb
; :

They were moving in the wrong direction, again implies his utterance of the stime truth
'
'

away from spiritual liberty into spiritual sla- before, probably when he was last with them
very, and the apostle's heart is deeply moved (1:9); if not at that time, then in this Epistle.
with anxiety to preserve them from so great a See 3 10. :

calamity. 4. Christ is become of no eflect unto


2. Behold, I Paul say unto you, that if you, whosoever of you are justified by
ye be circumcised, Christ shall (will) the laAV. It is difficult to make a satisfactory
profit you nothing. In their circumstances, translation of the first clause. The Revised
submission to circumcision would involve a Version reads Ye are severed from Christ.'
:
'

relinquishment of their faith in Christ, a vir- The Bible Union Version 'Ye are separated :

tual confession that he was not an all-suiBcient from Christ.' Dr. Davidson " Ye wepe sepa- :

Saviour, "the way and the truth and the life," rated from Christ." It is better, however, to
and a return to worl<s of law as being the only render the Greek verb in this clause by the
ground of acceptance with God. It may be English perfect tense: 'Ye have been sei)a-
assumed that they would not entertain the rated from Christ' that is, your separation
thought of being circumcised, unless they were from Christ is a completed act in the case of
led to suppose they could not be saved without those of you who are seeking to be justified in
it, and so were led to trust in obedience to the law. There is no article before the original
law for salvation; and Paul saw that, if they word for 'law,' and though the Jewish Law be
were to do this, they would be in a more hope- meant, it is thought of as standing for all
less condition than they were before hearing divin6law; and the meaning is this, that one
the gospel. By the words, I Paul,' the iipos- who is now resorting to law for justification
'

tle assumes a right to speak with authority, has thereby severed his connection with Christ.
and shows that he expects his authority to Hence, Paul employ's the tense of completed
have some weight with those addressed. action in the next clause: Ve are fallen
3. For I testify again to every man that from grace. And this is as much as to say,
is circumcised, that he is a debtor to do by your first movement toward the legal sys-
the Avhole law. Observe the changes in tem, toward a reliance upon works of law for
the Revised Version

'yea' instead of 'for,' acceptance with God, j'ou have surrendered in
and 'roceiveth circumcision' instead of 'is principle your confidence in Christ as the
circumcised.' In both cases the Revision is an ground of hope. The apostle has in view their
improvement. The apostle is speaking to the standing before God as fixed by a logical inter-
point. Every Galatian Christian who allows pretation of their conduct. By that conduct
himself to be circumcised undertakes by that they turn away from salvation through grace,
act to obey the whole Jewish Law, moral and and sink back into the condition of men who
ceremonial. For that law in its origin and are seeking to work out a righteousness of their
purpose is a unit, and he that confesses his own. What Christ himself may yet do for
obligation to obey one part of it admits his them in his great mercy is not said, but the
Ch. v.] GALATIANS. G5

5 For we thnmgh the Spirit wait for the hope of 5 by the law ye are fallen away from grace. For
;

righteousness by faith. we through tlic Spirit by faith wait for the hope of
G For in .Iomis Christ neither circumcision availeth 6 righlcoiisness. For in Christ Jesus ueithtT circum-
any thing, nor uucircuiucisiou; but faith which workelli cision availeth anything, nor uncirciinicision but ;

by love. 7 faiih 1 working through love. Ye were running


7 Ye did run well; who did hinder you that ye well; who did hinder you that ye should not obey
should not obey the truth?

1 Or, wrought.

attitude which they are taking toward his little. Faith is the one indispensable thing,
woriv for them is faithfully shown. Hence, and faith, if genuine, works by love; that is to
the apostle is not teaching in this passage the say, it exerts itself, puts forth its energy by
modern doctrine of "falling from grace," means of love to Christ, to Christians, and to
whatever may be the bearing of the entire men. Faith, indeed, has great power, and
Epistle on tlie truth of that doctrine. through the channel of love it lays hold of
5. For we through the Spirit wait for God and man. "It is as much as to say,"
the hope of righteousness by faith. The remarks Lutlier, "he that will be a true Chris-
connective 'for' make this verse confirmatory tian indeed, must be a true believer. . . .

of the preceding statement, (ver. 4.) The fact Now he believeth not truly if works of charity
that true Christians await in faith the fulfill- follow not his faith. . . . Paul, therefore, in
ment of their hope
an evidence that one
is whole life of a Chri.s-
this place sets forth the
wlio is turning to legal works for salvation has tian man; namely, that inwardly it consist-
fallen away from the method of grace. 'The eth in faith toward God, who hath no need
hope' cannot here mean the feeling of hope, of our works; and outwardly in our charity
because Christians are not 'waiting for' that; or good works toward men, whom our faith
they already possess it. It must rather signify profitcth nothing."
that which hoped for, the object of hope.
is This verse is often alleged in proof of Paul's
But this hoped-for good is in some way defined radical agreement with James. For the faith
by the words 'of righteousness.' What then which he describes as the root of the new life
does the word righteousness here signify? It is an energetic working principle; it is not

may either denote a perfect moral character only a hand opened to receive, but also a hand
as that which is hoped for, or it may denote opened to give if it has boundless capacity
;

acceptance with God through Christ, which is for trust, has equal capacity for love. The
it

the pledge of that which is hoped for, that is, passage has also been alleged in proof of the
eternal life. In other words, it may signify slight importance of any outward rites, even
either righteousness or justification. And as though appointed by Christ. But without
the latter meaning is suggested by the whole reason for the apostle makes no reference to
;

previous argument, as well as by the sense of Christian duties or ordinances, and love, with-
the corresponding verb in the foregoing verse, out which faith is dead, insists upon obedience
we adopt it here. Thus this verse teaches tliat to the commands of the Master who is loved.
eternal life, for which Christians wait in hope, Kitual ob.-ervances as expressions of faith must
belongs to justification and will eventually not be confounded with ritual observances as
flow from it; that this justification and hope works of righteousness on which the soul relies
are dependent on faith in Christ; and that this for justification.
faith itself is due to the 7-12. He Deplores their Leaning
work of the Holy
an exceedingly rich cluster of truths, TOWARDS Judaism, but has Confidence
S|)irit:
every one of which is a protest against the THAT THEY YET AbIDE IN THE TrUTH,
Judaistic movement among
the Galatians. AND Will Cast Out the Leaven of
6. For Jesus Christ neither circum- False Teachers.
in
cision availeth anything, nor uncircum- 7. Ye did run well: who did hinder
cision ; but faith which worketh by love. you that ye should not obey the truth?
Union with Christ is the only condition of The imperfect tense of the Greek verb 'to
acceptance with God. Obedience to the Jew- run' is more exactly rendered in the Revised
ish Law has no power to help one who is in Version Ve were running well. As Paul
:

fellowship with Christ; heathenism has as looks back over their Christian, course pre-
66 GALATIANS. [Ch. V.

8 This persuasion comefh not of him that calleth you. 8 the truth ? This persuasion came not of him who
9 A little leaven leaveneth the wli le lump. 9 calleth you. A liitle leaven leaveneth the whole
10 I have contidetice in you through the Lord, that 10 lump. 1 have confidence to you-ward in the Lord,
ye will be none otherwise minded but he that troub-
: that ye will be none otherwise minded but he that
:

leth you shall bear his judgmeut, whosoever he be. 1


troub'leth you shall bear his judgment, whosoever

vioiis to the arrival of Judaizing teachers we think it highly probable that the zeal of

among them, he can speak of it with praise. the Judaizers, even more than the plausibility
Tliey were doing their work bravely. They of their teaching, was effective in spreading
were mindful of the truth which he had tlieir influence.

preached to them, and were seeking to grow 10. I have confidence in you through
ill the grace and the knowledge of Clirist. the Lord, that ye will be none otherwise
But a change was now manifest. They were minded. Better / have confidence in regard
:

no longer pressing forward in the way of life. to you in the Lord, etc. The pronoun 'I' is
And so he asks with some surprise and perhaps emphatic I myself, whatever others may say
:

indignation Who is it that has cut off your


:
'
or think, have confidence in you. 'In the
way and arrested your progress (compare 1 Lord' is added by the apostle because tlie
Thess. 2 18; Kom. 12 22; 1 Peter 3 7), so
: : : source of his confidence as to tlie future belief
that ye should not hearken to the true gospel ?' of the Galatians is in Christ. The second
Some one's persuasion had evidently been clause, that ye will be none otherwise
'

more effective with them than that of the minded,' seems to mean that ye will think
truth itself, as preached by Paul, and by and feel as I have expressed myself in regard
others who accepted his views of the gospel. to this matter. In stiying this he may have
8. This persuasion cometh not of him had in mind the context from ver. 7 to ver.
that calleth you. A literal translation would which shows that the Judaists had
9 inclusive,
read :The persuasion is not from him that away from the truth in a
led the Galatians
calleth you. That is, the persuasion to wliich dangerous manner, or he may have htid in
I have just referred, and to which you have mind the proverb just quoted, believing that
hearkened, instead of hearkening to the truth, they would agree with him as to the danger
is not from God who calls you from darkness suggested by it. In either case, he is confident
to light. The word persuasion may be
'
that his Galatian bretliren, forewarned and
'

either active or passive it may signify the act


; instructed, will agree with his view and, resist-
of persuading, or the result of that act, being ing the teachers of error, regain their trust in
persuaded. Here it is commonly and cor- Christ alone for salvation. But he that
rectly supposed to be active, especially because troubleth you shall bear his judgment,
of its connection with 'him that calleth.' whosoever he be. Literally, 'the judgment'
How dangerous this persuasion might be the which his sin merits. The word trfjubleth
' ' '
'

apostle now shows by an illustration. signifies to disturb the mind or the community.
9. A little leaven leaveneth the whole Both these evils were no doubt occasioned by
lump. What is represented here by 'a little the new teaching which contradicted that of
leaven'? Many answer, false teaching; and the apostle. Even the ardent, impulsive, un-
others, false teachers. The former insist that stable Galatians were not likely to be carried
the influence of erroneous teaching is more over to Jewish legalism without a sharp strug-
like the influence of leaven than is the influ- gle in the minds of individuals or without
ence of false teachers. But the latter insist loud controversy in the churches. Shall bear '

that the context directs the mind to a small his judgment' is a clear recognition of divine
company and that their work government and justice. The teacher of false
of teachers,
would through the churches as doctrine, however conspicuous he may be,
diffuse itself
leaven diffuses its energy through the whole will not escape retribution. The ringleader
mass. We
incline to the latter view, but do of this proselyting raid is accountable to God,
not see that the meaning of the passage would and at his tribunal will surely be made to bear
be essentially difl'erent if the former were a heavy burden of displeasure. Yet there
intended. The latter, however, throws a little may be no reference to any particular leader.
more emphasis on the personal element, and The singular may perhaps be used merely for
Ch. v.] GALATIANS. 67

11 And I, brethren, if I yet preacli circumcision, why 11 he be. But I, bretliren, if 1 still preach circum-
do I yet Slitter persecution? then is the ott'ence of the cision,why am I still persecuted? then hath the
cross ceased. 12 stumblingblock of the cross been done away. 1
I would they were even cut ofF wliich trouble you.
12 would that they who unsettle you would even ' go
For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty
1:J ;
beyond circumcision.
only ti.se not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by 13 For ye, brethren, were called for freedom only ;

love serve one another. tisf not your freedom for an occasion to the flesh,
but tlirough love be servants one to another.

1 Or, mutilate thetntelve4.

emphasis, and the application be to every one in kind from the terrible practices of the
wlio was engaged in pressing circumcision on heathen priests." (Lightfoot.)
the Galatians. 13-15. Paul Exhorts them not to
11. And I, brethren, if I yet preach cir- Abuse their Christian Freedom by
cumcision, why do I yet suffer persecu- Neglecting to Obey the Law of Love.
tion? then is the offence of the cross 13. For, brethren, ye have been called
ceased. Or (Revised Version), But unto liberty. By the word 'for' this state-
/, breth-
ren, if I still preach circurncision, why am I ment is made to justify the sharp language of

still persecuted f then hath the stumbling- the previous verse. 'I cannot, as you per-
block of the cross been done away. The con- ceive, look'upon these Judaistic "subverters,"
nection of this verse with the preceding is who are creating dissension and bringing you
obscure. But it may be supposed that Paul under a yoke of bondage, without deep indig-
was reminded by his strong language concern- nation for ye were called by the grace of
;

ing Judaists, that he had been himself accused God unto freedom in Christ his Son.' Yet,
by tliem of conceding the necessity of circum- while justif^'ing all he had said against the
cision, for example, in the case of Timothy, advocates of circumcision and the Jewish Law,
and that he now proposes by one decisive the apostle feels the need of cautioning the
argument to prove the absurdity of the charge. brethren in Galatia against an abuse of their
'
But as to m^'self, brethren, if it is circumci- Christian liberty. Perhaps he knew that some
sion that I still preach, as I certainly did be- had already begun to turn their liberty into
fore my conversion, wh^' am I notwitlistanding license; and, therefore, he adds, only use
this persecuted?' For to my persecutors the not liberty for an occasion to the flesh.
only stumbling-block pertaining to the cross, Whether 'use' should be supplied in English
or to the gospel, is its dispensing with obe- to bring out the full sense of the Greek, or
dience to the law as a means of justification some other verb, like make, is somewhat
;

and if I so preacli it as to include in it obe- doubtful but looking at the Greek sentence,
;

dience to the law as necessary to acceptance we prefer 'make' (Troterre) 'Make not your :

with God, the stumbling-block is removed, freedom into an occasion for the flesh' mean-
and their hostility to me becomes inexplic- ing by 'the flesh' the entire sinful nature of
able. man. Thus the apostle " at once hastens, with
12. I would that they were even cut off more than usual earnestness, to trace out the
which trouble you. The Greek interpreters ineffaceable distinction between true spiritual
all understand thisof self-mutilation. "Would freedom and a carnal and antinomian license."
that they who unsettle you would even mutil- (Ellicott. ) That 'the flesh' here means the
ate themselves." (Davidson.) So understood, whole sinful nature of man is evident from
the language is an instance of just sarcasm. the following i)aragraph. (vcr. 16-J6.) But by
Let those zealots for a fleshly rite who resort love serve one another. An exhortation
to desperate misrepresentation in defense of of deep and far-reaching import, reminding
it, go the whole figure and make themselves us of a wonderful scene at the close of our
eunuchs, like the priests of Cj'bele. "Cir- Lord's ministry, when he taught his disciples
cumcision under the law and to the Jews, was to render the humblest service to one an-
the token of a covenant. To the Galatians, other. See John 13 4-16. The word trans- ;

Under the Gospel Dispensation, it had no such lated 'serve,' signifies to render bondservice;
significance. It was merely a bodily mutila- and as it is in the present tense, it denotes
tion, as such differing rather in degree than continuous serving; so that the Revised Yer-
68 GALATTANS. [Ch. V.

14 For all the law is fulfilled in one word, eren in 14 For the vchole la* is fuMUed in one word, even
this; Ihou shall love tliy neighbour as thyself. in this; Thou sbalt love thy neighijour as tby-
15 But if ye l>ite and devour oue another, take heed 15 self. But if ye bite and devour one another, take
that ye be not consumed one of another. heeil that ye be not consumed one of another.
But1 sav, Walk by the Spirit, and ve shall not
K; This 1 say tlieu, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall 16
not fultil the lu'sl of the flesh. 17 fulfil the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lustith
17 For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh;
Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one for these are contrary the one to the other; that ye
to the other so that ye cannot do the things that ye
;

would.

sion gives the sense correctly, Through love there is some reason to believe that Paul, by
'

be servants one to another.' You can do the his prompt and powerful defense of the gos-
'

Immblest work with the utmost freedom of pel, together with his earnest delineation of a
spirit, if you do it for the benefit of your breth- true Christian life in contrast with a life of
ren and under the blessed influence of love.' sin, arrested the influx of error and restored
No man ever perceived the beauty and energy harmony in the truth.
the churches to
of love with a more distinct vision than the 16-26. Contrast Between a Life Con-
writer of this Epistle. trolled BY THE Flesh and a Lifk Con-
14. For all the law is fulfilled in one trolled BY the Spirit: the Former
word that is, by observing one precept. The Unchristian, the Latter Christian.
Greek verb is in the perfect tense, and there- 16. This 1 say then more exactly, Noiv
fore the apostle teaches that whoever has done I say (Revised Version), or, mean. Walk
what required by the single command which in the Spirit. Better, Walk by the Spirit
is

he has in mind, has obeyed the whole law. Of


that is, under the guiding impulse of
course, he does not intend to affirm that any one the Holy Spirit, and so in conformity with
has done this, but only that doing this involves his will. And ye shall not fulfil the
doing the rest. Even in this; thou shalt lust of the flesh. The double negative in
love thy neighbour as thyself. See Lev. the Greek may
be properly rendered, as in
19:18; Matt. 22:39; Luke 10:27; Kom. the Revised Version, ye shall by no means
13 : 9, 10. To obey this command one must fulfil the lust of the flesh. The word 'flesh'
have perfect love to his neighbor, and such does not here signify the bodily part of man,
love cannot exist in a heart that is not filled to the exclusion of his spirit, but his sinful
with supreme love to God. The excellence
nature that is, his entire nature before conver-
of the gospel is seen in this, that by it love to sion, and whatever is sinful in his nature after

God and man is implanted in the heart as it conversion. According to Thayer's "Lexi-
never is by the claims of law so that by driv- con," it "denotes mere human nature, the
;

ing men from itself to Christ, for pardon and earthly nature of man apart from divine influ-
peace, the law gets an honor and love that it ence, and, therefore, prone to sin and opposed
can obtain in no other way. As a rule, for to God." The word translated 'lust' signifies
those who have begun to love God, the law is 'desire,' 'longing,' 'craving,' and especially',
not only holy, but also good while as a means
;
desire for what is forbidden.' Compare Rom.
'

of salvation for sinners it is powerless. Com- 7 : 7, 8; James 1 : 14, 15. When, as in this

pare Kom. 7: 12; Gal. 3: 21. place, the context in the


shows that it is used
15. But if ye bite and devour one an- latter sense, it may
properly be translated
other, etc. " He says not simply bite, which lust,' although the reader must bear in mind
'

indicates sudden anger, but devour, which that it has no special reference to sensual
implies continuance in an evil mind." Again, craving.
" h^trife and contention are destruction to those For the flesh lusteth against the
17.
who introduce them, as well as to those who and the Spirit against the flesh;
Spirit,
welcome tliem." (Chrj-sostom.) The more and these are contrary the one to the
sacred and intimate the fellowship disturbed, other. A confirmation of the foregoing
the more difficult is it to restore harmony. statement. The desire of man's heart before
" A brother offended is harder to be won than conversion, and of his remaining evil nature
a strong city and such contentions are like after conversion, is opposed to every impulse
;

the bars of a castle." (Pn.t is I9, Rev. Ver.) But of the Spirit, and in acting against the work
. ;
Ch. v.] GALATIANS. 69

18 Bui if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the 18 may not do the things that ye would. But if ye are
law. I'J led" by the Spirit, ye are nut under the law. the Nuw
19 Now the works of the flesh are manliest, which works of the flesh are manifest, which are these, for-
are Uune, Adidtery, fornication, uucleanness, lascivious-
11 ess,

of the Holy Spirit, may bo said to oppose tbo Spirit, you are prevented by the flesh to the
Spirit liimself. Honoe the apostle adds the extent of its power; and you would
in case

sentence, 'and these are contra i-y tlie one to do works of the flesh, you are prevented by
the other.' According to the better textual the Spirit's influence. This is certainly con-

documents (K* B D* E F G against N<= A = ceivable, bearing in mind the porsonilication

K L P), the true reading is '


for,' instead of of the flesh and the personality of the Sjiirit;

'
and.' 'The seems to me a less natural thought than
flesh lusts against the Spirit and but it

the Spirit against the flesli, because they are the one expressed by so that,' etc.
'

contrary,' etc. So that ye cannot do the 18. Bit if ye be led of the Spirit (are
things that ye would or (Revised Version), led by the -S>i?-e7), ye are not under the law

that ye may not do the things that ye ivould. or, under law.
For the article is wanting
The probable meaning of the clause, when in the original text, and need not here be sup-
compared with Rom. 7 15, 16, is that the plied in translation. In this verbe the apostle
:

opposition of sinful desire arrests the better declares that the influence of the Spirit is of
choice 'so that' it is not carried into effect. such a nature as to deliver one from bondage
to the law as a means of justification. Ani-
'

It will also be noticed that the verb 'lusteth


is not expressed after the word '
Spirit.' Many mated by that influence, he is truly free, and
interpreters would, therefore, supply a word does the will of God under the impulse of
of similar import, but less associated with love. Hence, the fact that one is led by the
evil,such as contends,' or strives.' Yet tliis
' ' Spirit renders it certain that he is not under

isboth unnecessary and unnatural. Compare law. Moreover, it is evident from a compari-
Luke '22 15, " With desire I have desired to
:
son of this verse with ver. 16 and 17, that
eat this passover with you before I suffer." the law is conceived of as in some way arous-
As to the force of tlie Greek word tlva), trans- ing the selfish nature of man into controlling
lated 'so that,' see Buttmann's "Grammar," action, while the Spirit inspires him with grati-
239, who argues that it may be translated so tude and benevolence. The former may beget
that in a number of passages. Winer, Meyer, fear and remorse on the one hand, or self-
and Fritzsehe insist upon the telic sense. Dr. righteousness and pride on the other; but it
Hackett maintains that the telic sense may be does not produce the fruit of trust or love or
retained here. "Tlie apostle predicates the personal devotion, while the latter produces
teleological aim here of the 'flesh' ((ripf), or these, iind thereby weakens, if it does not de-
man, which, according to a
sinful principle in stroy, self-righteoiisness, pride, and fear.

correct anthropology, is viewed as the ascend- 19. Now


the w^orks of the flesh are
ant influence before the beginning of a new manifest, which are these or, 'of which
life, and after that, as still striving to maintain class are' the following. The apostle does

its After having said that the


ascendency." not aim to give a full list of sinful works, but
two principles are thus arrayed against each specimens which are well known to his read-
other, he goes on to adjust the sequel of the ers. This enumeration is translated more cor-
sentence to that posture of the conflict: " They rectly in the Revised Version than in the
are opposed to each other, I say, and the dan- Common Version, thus: Fornication, iin-

ger you
is that will remain under the old cleanness, lascivionsness, idolatry, sorcery,
domination the flesh, in this struggle with enmities, strife, jealousies, wraths, factions,
the Spirit, striving to bring it about that you divisions, heresies, envyings, drunkenjtess,
should not do the things which the Spirit has revellings, and snch like a black catalogue
taught you to approve." etc. Meyer and of sins issuing from a selfish heart! Compare
" For out
Ellieott understand that each of these princi- the words of Jesus in Matt. 15 19, :

ple.'? strives against the other, that you should


of the heart come forth evil thoughts, mur-
n(.tdo the things which you would do, or will. ders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false wit-

In case you would do what is approved by the nes.s, railings: these are things which defile
70 GALATIANS. [Ch. V.

20 Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, |


20 nicationj uncleanness,lascivioiisness, idolatry, sorce-
wratb, strife, seditions, heresies, ry, enmities, strile, jealousies, wraths, factions, divi-
21 Euvyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and 21 sions, parties, euvyings, drunkenness, revellings,
sucli like: of the which I tell you before, as 1 liave and such like: of the which I ' forewarn you, even
also told you in time past, that they which do such as I did ' forewarn you, that they who practise such
things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. 22 things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. But
i2 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long- the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffer-
sutt'ering, gentleness, goodness, faith.

1 Or, tell you plainly.

the man." Bengel divides these sins into sometimes used where there is no complete
those 'committed (1) with one's neiglibor; intoxication. Of the which I tell you be-
(2) against God; (3) against one's neiglibor; fore, as I have also told you in tim.es
(4) on one's self.' liightfoot groups them in past (forewarn you, even as I did foreunirti
the same way as (1) sensual passions forni-
yon) that they which do (practise^) such
' :

cation,' 'uncleanness,' 'licentiousness'; (2) things shall not inherit the kingdom of

unlawful dealings in things spiritual 'idol- God. 'Even as I did forewarn you' refers to
atry,' 'witchcraft'; (3) violations of hrotherly what he had said during his second visit to the
love 'enmities,' 'murders'; {i) intem- churches of Galatia, when some of these 'works
. . .


perate excesses 'drunkenness,' 'revellings.' of the flesh had begun to appear among them. '

The word 'fornication' appears to signify, in 'Shall not inherit,' etc. Whatever may be
this place, illicit sexual intercourse in the case the relation of men to the church, however
of those married or of those unmarried; 'un- loud their profession of faith in Christ, they
cleanness,' impurity of profligate living, in- will perish at last, if their works are such as
cliiding pederasty and 'lasciviousness,' open those just enumerated.
; Tliey that are of tlie
wantonness of conduct, bold defiance of moral flesh cannot please God, nor can they "partake

order for example, in the case of whoremong- of eternal salvation in the Messiah's king-
ers and harlots. Idolatry denotes the open dom " for they are not sons of God through
' '
;

recognition and worship of false gods, and faith in Christ Jesus, since the faith which
'sorcery' the use of magical arts, many of they profess to have does not work through
which were practiced in secret. The specifi- love. See ver. 6.
cations following these need no explanation 22. But the fruit of the Spirit. Sieffert
;

thej' are sins which spring from selfishness holds, against Mej-er, that "the collective
and produce contention, division, and weak- singular, 'fruit,' is intended to fix attention
ness in the churches. I would
on the inner unity of the fruit of the Spirit,'
translate the '

words 'enmities, strife, as contrasted with 'the works of the flesh,'


jealousy, wraths, in-
trigues, divisions, factions, envyings, murders, which spring out of many difterent desires."
drunkenness, revellings.' The word trans- Is love, joy, peace, longsulTering, gentle-
lated wraths appears to denote outbursts of ness, goodness, faith. The Revised Ver-
'
'
'

wrath." The last two nouns, 'drunkenness' sion substitutes 'kindness' for 'gentleness,'
and 'revellings,' differ in that the latter is and faithfulness' for faith in both CM.ses ' ' '

more comj)rehensive in meaning. It gener- an improvement in the former, because the :

ally includes the former, though it may be Greek word (xpitrTOTin) signifies 'kindness'

1 The word for '


murders is not found in the Sinaitic
' and irpaa-trtiv, though the words are of similar
jToi'eii'

and Vatican MSS., or in five cursives. But it is in A meaning. " Roughly speaking, n-oien' may he said to an-
C D E FG K L P, and most cursives also in both forms ; swer to the Latin /nrfr;'f, or the English do rtpaaaeiv. to
<if the Syriac, the Meniphitic, the Armenian, ^thiopic, agere, or English, praelwe. Tloinv, to designate perform-
Gothic, and Vulgate Versions and is accepted by Laoh-
; ance wpo<T<Teii', intended, earnest, habitual performance.
;

mann, Meyer, the Revisers. Compare Rom. 1 : 29. " The IloieiV, to denote merely productive action -rpaaaav, ;

fact, however, of the same alliteration occurring in an- definitely directed action, rioieii', to point to an actual
other epistle written about the same time, is rather in result npatrafiv, to the scope and character of the re-
;

its favor, and the omission in some texts may be due to sult. In Attic, in certain connections the difference
the carelessness of a copyist transcribing words so between them is great; in others, hardly perceptible."
closely resembling each other. The reading must, there- (Schmidt.) "The words are a.'sociated in John 3 20, :

fore, remain doubtful." (Lighlfoot.) 21; 5: 29; Acts 26 9, 10; Roui. 1:32; 2:3; 7:15, seq.;
:

s A distinction ought to be made in translation between 13 : 1." (Thayer.)


Ch. v.] GALATIANS. 71

23 Meekness, temperance : against such there is no |


23 ing, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, raeeknesSj
law 4 1 temperance: against such there is no law. And
24 And they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh they that are of Christ Jesus have crucified tlie
with the att'eetions and lusts. tle>h with the passions and the lusts thereof.
2) If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the 25 If we live by the .Spirit, by the Spirit let us also
Spirit. 26 walk. Let us not be vainglorious, provoking one
26 Let us not be desirous of vainglory, provoking another, envying one auotlier.
one another, envying one another.
1 Or, ael/'COHtrol.

or '
graciousness,' rather than 'gentleness,' ci>nsidered, as here, this ethical mortification
though gentleness nitiy be included in kind- of tlie flesh is something already accomplished
ness; and in the latter, because the context (compare Kom. G 2-14); but in reality, it is :

requires us to think of a quality which has also renewed continually (Rom. 8:i3; Cui. 3:5),
respect to human relations. though the latter fact is not mentioned in this
23. Meekness, temperance. Self-control place." (Meyer.)
is a better rendering of the Greek word for 25. If we live in (or, by) the Spirit, let
'temperance.' If there be any special refer- us also walk in {by) the Spirit. Let the
ence to tiioderatii>n in the use of food or drink, outward life agree with the inward. If the
this reference must be inferred from an as- latter is moved and directed by the Spirit of
sumed contrast between this word and the God, the' former should be controlled by the
words 'drunkenness' and 'revellings' in ver. same divine influence. But that is not an in-
21, and not from any such limitation in the fluence which operates without regard to
me-ining of the word itself. The most that human freedom. No Christian will be kept
can safely be said is this, tbat self-control in the narrow way, unless it be by his own
fairly embraces thorough 'temperance' in the consent and choice. The exhortation means
use of food and drink. Neither food nor watchfulness, prayerful ness, and effort. The
drink of any kind should be used in such a Greek verb for 'walk' is not the same in this
manner as to injure health of body or of verse and in ver. 16. The one used here
mind. Against such there is no law. They suggests the idea of an orderly procedure,
are all good, and not evil. The law is for perhaps of moral and religious conduct regu-
them, not against them. " If ye are led by lated by a settled purpose.
the Spirit, ye are not under law." (ver. is.) 26. Let us not be desirous of vain-
"Law is not made for a righteous man, but glory, provoking one another, envying
for the lawless and disobedient," etc. (i ffm- one another. If we give to the Greek word
1:9,10.) Yet it approves all that is right, translated 'be' its usual signification, the first
though it cannot produce it in fallen man. part of this verse must be translated, 'Let us
24. And they that are Christ's have not become vainglorious,' as if that were a sin
crucified the flesh with the affections to which Christians were liable, but of which
and lusts. The Revised Version is prefer- the Galatians had not in any marked degree
able, And they that are of Christ Jesus have been guilty. A conceited, vainglorious per-
crucified the flesh tvith the passions and the son is certain to i)rovoke others to dislike and
lusts thereof. Yet the word 'thereof might criticize him. At the same time, he is liable
properlj' be stricken off, because unnecessary to be envious of those who receive the atten-
to the sense and representing no word in the tion and respect which he imagines to be due
original. The verb have crucified expresses
' '
to himself. It is, therefore, very diflBcult to
SI contpleted act, referring, without doubt, to preserve brotherly love in churches where
their conversion. At that time they died with some are puffed up with pride, thinking of
Christ that they might live unto God. See themselves more highly than they ought to
2 19, 20; 3
: 26, 27. " To Christians ideally
:
,
think. See Rom. 12 : 3.
72 GALATIANS. [Ch. VI.

CHAPTER VL
BRETHREN, if a man
be overtaken in a f.,ult, ye 1 Brethren, even if a man be overtaken lin any
wliich are spiritual, restore sucli a one in the spirit trespass, ye who are spiritual, restore such a one iu
of uieekness; considering tliyself, lest tlioii also be a spirit of meekness looking to thyself, lest thou
;

tfiiipted. 2 also be tempted. Bear ye one another's burdens,


2 Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfill the
law of Christ.

1 Or, by.

Ch. 6: "He adds in tlie last chapter several sage in John, we prefer the former. The
general directions, siicli as relate, for example, offense referred to (jrapajTTOMa) is, "a lapse from
to the spirit with which Christitins should ad- truth and uprightness."
In the Revised Ver-
monish those who fall into sin, the patience and Eritzsche
sion it is rendered 'trespass,'
which they should exhibit toward each other's saj's that it differs "in figure," but not "in
faults, the duty of providing for the wants of force," from the Greek word {aixdpTrina), which
Christian teachers, and, in short, performing denotes a sinful deed. Ye which are spir-
unweariedly every good work, with the assur- itual. Thus the apostle assumes that there
ance that in due time they should have their were those in the churches of Galatia who
reward, (i-io-) He warns them once more were led by the Spirit of God, and who, under
against the sinister designs of those who were the influence of that Spirit, might deal wisely
so earnest for circumcision, holds up to their with offenders. But he does not exhort those
view again the cross of Christ as that alone in who were unconscious of bearing 'the fruit of
which men should glory, and closes with a the Spirit' (0:22. 23) to undertake this delicate
praj'er for them as those whom he would still and difficult task of restoring a brother that
regard as brethren, (u-is.)" (Hackett.) has been guilt}' of known sin. Restore such
1-10. General Exhortatio>s and a one in the spirit of meekness. The Re-
"Warnings. vised Version in a spirit of meekness answers
'
'

1. Brethren. This word must be regarded perfectly to the original. A spirit of meek-
as a spontaneous, unstudied expression of the distinguished by that
ness is a disposition
apostle's feeling to ward the Galatians. Though and produced by the indwelling of
quality
heha'^ reproved and admonished themsharply, the Holy Spirit. See 5 23. A proud or con- :

he still loves them as brethren in the Lord, and tentious spirit would utterly disqualify one
addresses them with deep affection. Thus love for the service contemplated bj' the ajiostle in
pleads when argument is exhausted. If (Re- this exhortation. Considering thyself, lest
vised Version, even if) a man be overtaken thou also be tempted. "The transition
in a fault. The meaning of the verb (jrpo- from the plural to the singular gives the charge
Xriii<i>e^), translated 'be overtaken," is consid- a direct personal application: each one of jou
ered doubtful. It may signify (as (taTaAo/ajSavw, individually." (Lightfoot.) The word also' '

in John 8:4),' be detected,' or, surprised ' '


shows that the fault,' or lapse into sin, spoken '

that is, This in- of in the first clause, is occasioned b}' tempta-
in the act of transgression.
terpretation is approved by Light- tion, and that even spiritual men are liable to
Ellicott,
foot, and others. If correct, the case supposed be overcome by temptation. "Let him that
by the apostle is one which admits of no doubt thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall."

as to the offense that is, as to the certainty of (1 Cor. 10: 12.) A consideration of one's own
its having been committed. Others believe weakness will prevent harsh dealing with an
that the verb describes its subject as involved, offending brother. This general direction of
before he is fully aware of it, in transgression. Paul is perfectly consistent with the more de-
He is taken, when off his guard, by tempta- tailed method of procedure laid down by
tion and, before he clearly apprehends his Christ in Matt. 18 15-18. The aim in both
; :

condition, lapses into wrongdoing; so that his cases is restoration, not excision though the ;

offense is less culpable than it would have latter must follow if the former fails.
been had he acted deliberately. It is difficult 2. Bear ye one another's burdens, and
to decide which of these significations best so fulfil the law of Christ. Not only should
suits the context; but, on account of the pas- Christians possess a sympathetic spirit which
CiJ. VI ] GALATIANS. 73
3 if a man think himself to be something, when
For 3 and so fulfil the law of Christ. For if a man think-
he nothing, he deceiveth himself.
is eth himself to be something, when he is nothing, he
4 let every man prove his own work, and then
But 4 deceiveth himself. Kut let each man i)rove his own
shall he have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in work, and then shall he have his glorying in regard
another. 5 of himself alone, and not of i his neighbour. l>"or
5 For every man shall bear his own burden. each man shall bear his own -burden.
6 Let him that is taught in the word communicate 6 Hut let him that is taught in the word communi-
uut him that leacheih in all good things.

1 6r. (A other 2 Or, load.

enters into the condition and shares the sorrow is more accurately rendered in
of the verse
of a trespassing brother, but their mutual love, Union Revision ".^nt/ then shall
the Bible :

sympathy, and helpfulness should embrace all he have [thel ground of glorying in reference
the cares and sorrows of the spiritual brother- to himself, and not to another.'^ For the
hood. The love of all the members of a Chris- Greek word (Kavxi)ti-aL) has the article, and does
tian church to one another should be like that not signify 'rejoicing,' but rather the ground '

which Christ has for them. For this evidently of glorying'; here, the ground of glorying
is 'the law of Christ' referred to by tlie apos- which the character of his own work furnishes.
tle. "This is m^' commandment, tliat ye love Compare the words of Paul in 1 Cor. 4:5:
one another, even as I have loved you." (John "And tlven shall every man have his j)raise
15: 12.) Compare 1 John 2 7-11. Though the from God" literally, "the praise from God"
: ;

Fourth Gospel was not yet written, it is evi-


that is, the praise due to each. But in this
dent that Paul knew the substance of the place the apostle has in mind what a Christian
Lord's sweet and wonderful command to his man should deem an occasion for exultant
disciples. thankfulness; it is the service or suflering
3. For if a man
think himself to be which, by the grace of God, he is himself en-
sometliin^, when he is nothing, he de- abled to bear; it is his work tested by the law
ceiveth himself. This verse confirms the of love, and not his work as compared with
preceding by showing the evils of an opposite 'the other' Christian's work, which may be of
spirit and life. He that imagines himself to the poorest quality. Ellicott's interpretation
be strong and able to stand alone, when in is excellent: "If any one wishes to find mat-
fact he is weak in faith and love, deludes him- ter for boasting, let it be truly searched for in
self Conceit is not only un.sympathetic, it is his own actions, and not derived from a con-
alsounihristian and delusive. The man whose trast of his own fancied virtues with the faults
piety is not in his life, but in his imagination, of others." Compare 2 Cor. 10 : 17; 11 : 30;
is subject to a fatal but cherished error. Faith 12 : 9. In the next verse astatement of the
is

that does notwork by love will not be recog- reason for this method of proving one's own
nized as genuine at the last day. work.
4. But let every man prove his own 5. For every man shall bear his own
work. As 'but' indicates, the proving of burden. Dr. Hackott proposes to translate
orie's own work, here recommended, is neg- this verse as follows: 'For each one shall
lected by tiie man who thinks that he is carry his own load,' remarking that "the
sometiiing when he is nothing. "By their burdens which the apostle urges his readers to
fruits ye shall know them" is a rule that can 'bear' (ver. 2) are the faults and offenses of
be applied to ourselves as well as to our neigh- others, toward which we are required to be
bors. And it is easier for a Christian to test tolerant, charitable; and the 'load' which
his work by the law of love than it is for him every one has to 'carry' is that of his own
to test his whole spiritual condition by that accountability for and deficiencies,
all his sins

law. For the work is a definite outcome from be it as it may with otliers, whether they are
his inner life; it is positive, voluntary, and in more or less guiltj"^ than himself"
a sense visible; he can look at it, measure it, 6. But. This particle is omitted in the
weigh it, prove its quality, and go back with Common Version. It belongs, however, to
it as a lamp into the still, obscure depths of the text and must be considered in the inter-
the soul which he could scarcely enter without pretation. Giving it, as usual, a slightly ad-
it. Compare 1 Cor. 11 31. The remainder ; versative sense, the connection of thought is
74 GALATIANS. [Ch. VL
7 Be not deceived God is not mocked for wliatso-
; : 7 cate unto him that teacheth in all good things. Be
ever a man
soweth, tliat shall he also reap. not deceived (jod is not mocked for whatsoever
; :

8 For that suweth to his flesh shall of the flesh


lie 8 a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that
reap corruption but he that soweth to the rfpirit shall
;
soweth unto his own flesh shall of the flesh reap
of the Spirit reap life everlasting. corruption ; but he that soweth unto the Spirit

as follows: 'But,' though in the matter re- other point of view, and with a far-reaching
ferred each one will carry his own load, it glance into the future, the thought of ver. 4.
to,
should not be so in everything, let him that 7. Be not deceived. Paul uses the same
is taught in the word communicate unto admonition elsewhere, with reference to what
him that teacheth, in all good things. immediately follows it. See 1 Cor. 6:9;
A more literal rendering would be: 'let him 15 33. So also here. God is not mocked
:

that is taught ... go shares with him that


that is, with impunity. Contemptuous treat-
teacheth in all good things.' Compare 1 Cor. ment of him is sure to bring evil on those who
9: 11: "If we have sown unto you spiritual are guilty of it. The very laws of their nature
things, is it a great thing if we shall reap your are his servants, doing his will. Yet every
carnal things?" If the word translated 'let act of sin expresses contempt for his being,
him participate with [KoivuiveCTm) is pressed to authority, and judgment. It will therefore
'

its utmost extent, it may be taken to mean bring upon the sinner a punishment answer-
that members of a Christian church should ing to his sin. For whatsoever a man
considertheir property as a possession common soweth, that shall (or, will) he also reap.
to themselves and their religious teachers. This is one of the profoundest testimonies of
But this cannot be the apostle's meaning. All Scripture as to the moral government of God.
that his words imply is that the laborer is There is nothing arbitrary in that govern-
worthy of his hire, that one who gives his ment. Retribution will be proportioned to
time and strength to the religious instruction sin, and will be seen to grow out of it with a
of others should receive from them the worldly terrible certainty. " They would none of my
things necessary to health and appropriate to counsel, they despised all my reproof. There-
one in his condition. See 1 Thess. 2:6,9; fore shall they eat of the fruit of their own
Phil. 4 10-18 : 1 Tim. 5
; 17, 18. Some have way, and be filled with their own devices."
:

supposed that 'in all good things' must refer (Prnv. 1 :3o, 31.) But the Same principle obtains
to spiritual possessions, and that the apostle in the direction of good as well as of evil.
exhorts the people who are still in need of re- 8. For he that soweth unto his {own.
ligious instruction to be partakers in all divine Revised Version) flesh shall of the flesh
knowledge with their teachers, by eagerly reap corruption. By 'his own flesh' is
listening to their words and becoming familiar meant his own sinful nature, and by 'sowing
with all they know. But this thought is less unto' it must be meant making it the seed
suited to the context than the other. For the plot or ground which he cultivates, and from
exhortations of the preceding paragraph show- which his life proceeds; in other words, it is
that the Galatians werfe deficient in mutual suffering his sinful nature to rule his conduct
love, sympathy, and helpfulness, and these
nay, it is adopting its influence as the rule
deficiencies are closely allied to neglect of of his life. And, therefore, the harvest is
those who served them in the gospel. Com- 'corruption,' moral worthlessness and decay,
pare also the use of the same verb in Phil. the ruin of soul and body forever. But he
4 15 and Kom. 12 13. In the former, Paul that soweth to the Spirit shall of the
: :

saj's that "no church communicated with me Spirit reap life everlasting. Paul does
as concerning giving and receiving but ye not say 'to his own Spirit,' thus setting the
only"; and in the latter, "distributing (com- higher principles and powers of man's nature
municating) to the necessities of the saints." over against the lower, and tracing the har-
Compare 1 Cor. 9 11. It is also said that all vest of eternal life to man himself; but he
:

the Greek Fathers who interpret the passage says, to the Spirit,' thus testifying that a true
'

give it the meaning adopted by us. Christian counts all his right-living a fruit of
The apostle proceeds now to enforce what he divine grace in his soul. He yields himself to
has just said by an appeal to the divine law of the influence of the Holy Spirit, and strives
retribution, thus taking up again from an- with that Spirit to overcome and destroy the
Ch. VI.] GALATIANS. 75

9 And
let us not be weary in well doing: for in due y shall of the Spirit reap eternal life. And let us not
season we sliutl reap, if we faint not be weary in well-doing; for in due season we shall
10As we have therelore opportunity, let us do good 10 reap, if we faint not. .So then, 'as we have oppor-
unto all mtn, especially uulo them who are of the tunity, let us work that which is good toward all
household of faitli. men, and especially toward them that are of the
11 Ye see how large a letter I have written unto you household of the faith.
wiih mine own hand. 11 See with how large letters I 2 write unto you with

1 Or, since 'i Ur, have i

influence of the flesh. And Matt. 5 44-48 22 39 Luke 10 29-37. The


the harvest is : ; : ; :

'everhisting (or, eternal) life'! Not merely


'opportunity' of doing good to foreigners and
endless existence in some unknown condition,
strangers is comparatively rare, but the dispo-
out of harmony, perhaps, with God and his sition to do them good may be constant. More-

universe, but life, full, free, pure, joyous, over, it is well to bear in mind that facilities
progressive, in fellowship with God, and at of travel and intercourse, are rapidly multi-
home with all his friends; this, and whatever plying the opportunities which Christians have
better is conceivable, is embraced in the mean- of doing good to all men. 'And especially
ing of 'eternal life,' as used by the sacred unto them who are of the household of
writers. faith.' Thus all believers in Christ are repre-
9. And us not be weary in well
let sented as belonging to one family, and are
duins:; Air in due season we shall reap, urged to cultivate a family aflection by ren-
if we faint not. In due season
'
in its '
dering assistance to one another. In this
own tittiiig time, we shall be put in possession respect also, the apostle simply reiterates the
of this eternal life. Let us not, then, faint in teaching of his Lord. His exhortation is but
the way. The words remind us of the apos- the statement, in another and practical form,
tle's testimony respecting himself not far of the Saviour's 'new commandment,' which
from the time when this letter was written. was, at the same time, as old as the spiritual
"Wherefore we faint not; but though our nature of man. For that those who are one
outward man is decaying, yet our inward in spirit and aim and hope should be bound
man is renewed day by day. For our light together by special affection, and should make
afiliction, which is for the moment, worketh special efforts to benefit one anotlier, is natu-
for us more and more exceedingly an eternal ral, inevitable. The extraordinary love of
weight of glory," etc. (acnr.i; le-is.) the early Christians to one another was a sur-
10, As we have therefore opportunity, prise to the heathen, and was, in many cases,
etc. Here again, as in a great majority of the principal thing which recommended the
instances where they difl:er, the Kevised Ver- new religion to their attention, and compelled
sion is more accurate than the Common Ver- them to see in it a beneficent power.
sion. So then, as we have opportunity, let us With this beautiful sentiment, the apostle
work that which is good toward all men, and finishes the main body of his Epistle to the
especially toioard them that are of the house- Galatians. All that remains is an earnest
hold of the faith. 'So then' (apa ovv) is an resume of what he has said, a brief reference
expression peculiar to Paul the fortner show-
: to himself, and a final benediction.
ing that the following words agree with some- 11-16. Brief Reoapitulation.
thing just said, and the latter, that they are a 11. Ye see how large a letter. Better,
conclusion from that something, 'accordingly See with how large letters I have written 7into
therefore.' As we have opportunity
'
when- '
you vnth mine own hand. "If we accept the
ever we have a suitable occasion. 'Let us results of the present exegesis," says Dr.
work that which is good.' It is desirable to Hackett, " we must translate in this way . . .

translate the verb here used '


work,' in order There is a harmony between this verse, as thus
to distinguish from another, which must be correctly understood, and 2Thess. 3 17, which
it :

translated 'do' (epya^onoi, 'work';


woie'w, 'do'). may be worth pointing out. In the Epi-^tle to
'Toward all men.' The apostle teaches the the Thessalonians, Paul speaks of tlie salutti-
same doctrine as his Lord, the doctrine of uni- tion there as added by his own hand, and as
versal philanthropy and, as far as possible, being a sign (ariiitlov) or attestation of the gen-
of universal beneficence. See 1 Tim. 3 1-4 uineness of the letter such, in fact, as he
:
76 GALATIANS. [Ch. VI.

12 As many as desire to make a fair shew in the 12 mine own hand. As many as desire to make a fair
flesh, they constrain you to be circumcised; only lest show in the tiesh, they compel you to be circum-
tliey should sutl'er persecution lor the cross of Christ. cised only that they may not be persecuted for
: '

1,J For neither tney themselves who are circumcised 13 the cross of (. hrist. l-'or not even they who - re-
keep the law but de^ire to have you circumcised, thai
; ceive circumcision do theiuselves keep ^tlie law;
I hey may glory in your tiesh. but they desire to have you circumcised, that ihty

1 Or, by reason of 2 Some uucient auiboi-icies read Aave 6ee circumcised 3 Or, u law.

generally inserted in his epistles, and which submit to the Jewish ritual, and especially to
consisted usually of a few words written by the decisive initiatory act. Lest they should
himself. His mode of referring to this mark sufl'er persecution for (or, Only that they
or sign, so I write (outco -ypdi^ai), shows tliat it may not be persecuted for) the cross of
was some peculiarity b3' which his hand Avas Christ. These Judaizing teachers were,
readily distinguished from that of the ordi- therefore, men who claimed to be Christians,
nary amanuensis. That peculiarity, as appears and who were influenced to do as they did by
from the epithet (irj)Ai/cois. how great) in our and per-
a strong desire to avoid the reproach
epistle, was the size of the written characters which the Jews directed, with all
secution
bitterness, against those who forsook the law
or letters, for which (oiiru ypd^ia, so I virite) he
was well known. Whether Paul wrote the of Moses to trust in the cross of Christ for
whole Epistle with his own hand, or the last salvation. According to the inspired judg-
verses only; whether he wrote in so peculiar ment of Paul, they were influenced by a desire
a way from want of practice, and hence, awk- to stand well with their countrymen, and es-
wardness; and whether he alludes to the pecially' by a desire to escape persecution from
matter because he would authenticate the them. Thus the apostle puurs a flo(jd of light
letter, or to remind the Galatians of his ear- upon the motives of these Judaizing teachers.
nestness and painstaking in their behalf, are In the next verse, he justifies this judgment in
questions which do not affect the translation," respect to their motives by an appeal to one
and were not, therefore, considered by Dr. feature of their conduct. 'For the cross' (tw
Hackett in the article from which this extract o-Tavpiu) is used to express the occasion or reason
is made. But in the American Edition of of the persecution. Compare Eoni. 11 20, :

Smiths "Bible Dictionary," he remarks: 30 and 2 Cor. 2 13, and Winer p. 21G<=. :

"The rendering of the Authorized Version 13. For neither they themselves, etc.
"How large a letter I have written with Better For not even do they themselves viho :

mine own hand (Gai. 6: ii) might lead us to receive circitnicision keep the laiv. Two ques-
suppose that in that instance, at least, he do- tions must here be answered 1. In what tense :

parted from his usual practice. But the is the participle, in the present (n-cpiTtfii'OMei'oi,
correct translation removes that impression, who receive circumcision) or in the perfect
showing that the remark applies rather to a (TreptreTiiijjjieVot) ? The rcasons which make for
few words or verses only of the letter as the the opinion that it is present are: (1) That
customary token of authenticity." (Page 759. it is the more difficult reading. (2) That it is
12. As many as desire to make a fair fairly well attested; namely, by B (F G) L,
show in the flesh. In the flesh here means and many cursives. For the former reason
'
'

in matters pertaining to the physical nature chiefly we feel constrained to look upon the
and outward life. Ritualism was the sphere present tense as probably genuine, and the
in which they sought to shine. The forms of perfect as a correction. But who are intended
godliness were more to them than the reality. by those 'who receive circumcision' the
And underneath their zeal for Jewish cere- Gentile Christians or the Judaizing teachers?
monies was a desire to be considered very If the former are intended, we must suppose

religious themselves at least, in the eyes of that some of the Galatian Christians were
their countrymen. Th-ey constrain (or, already submitting to circumcision, but with-
compel) you to be circumcised. Of course, out keeping the law in all respects, or even
l)y insisting that without circumcision men expecting to keep it. But this is scarcely
could not be saved. In so far as this convic- probable. It would have been an illogical
tion could be implanted in the minds of the and untenable position for sincere men. Be-
Galatians, they would be compelled by it to sides, the subject of this clause is evidently
Ch. VI.] GALATIANS. 77

14 But God forbid that I should glury save in tlie 14 may glory in your flesh. But far be it from me to
cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ,
crucified unto me, und I unto the world. through which the world hath been crucilied unto

15 For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth 15 me, and 1 unto the world, tor neither is (ircuin-
any thing, nor iiucircuiucision, but a new creature cision any thing, nor uncircumcision, but a new
16 And <is many as walk according to this rule, peace 16 -creature. And as many as shall walk by this rule,
be on them, and mercy, and upon the Israel of God. peace be upon them, and mercy, and upon the Israel
of God.

1 Or, whom 2 Or, creation.

the subject of the next chiuse, and the subject the same prououn would be used if Paul in-
of that clause must be the Judaizing teachers. tended it to represent the complex idea of
The Greek expression 'who receive circum- 'the cross of Christ.' Perhaps we cannot do
cision '
(oi denotes the party
TrepiTejivo/oiet'oi) better than to give it this wider reference, and
practicing and advocating circumcision and ;
if so the rendering of the Revised Version
the present participle is used to describe their 'through which' is correct. It was then
conduct in its present moral effect. Yet they through the propitiatory death of Christ upon
do not keep the law in all its parts themselves. the cross that Paul felt himself to be dead
But they desire to have you circum- unto the world, and the world dead unto him.
cised, that they may glory in your flesh. By this double expression he seeks to empha-
For bj' making proselytes to Judaism they size his utter abandonment of sinful aims, his
would gain the approval of their countrymen, entire separation from all that does not belong
without renouncing their confidence in Christ. to Christ, his profound indiflerence and even
The mere outward conformity of Gentile opposition to every ceremonial which turned
Christians to the Jewish Law in the initiatory him away from the Lord Jesus. And as a
rite, through their influence, would furnish reason for this he adds the following state-
them matter for boasting among the Jews, ment :

something to wliich they could appeal as evi- 15. For in Christ Jesus neither circum-
dence of their fidelity to the law. Thus they cision availeth anything, nor uncircum-
were selfish and hypocritical, seeking their cision, but a new creature (or, creation).
own ends while professing to seek for the sal- Why then does the apostle oppose circumcision
vation of the Gentiles. Certainly the Gala- so earnestly? Because it was insisted upon as
tians would do themselves irreparable harm a means of acceptance with God, as one of the
if they should give heed to the counsels of legal works on which salvation depends,
such men. though it has no power to give the new life in
14. But God forbid that I should (far Christ which is tlie beginning and the pledge
be it from me to) glory, save in the cross of eternal peace. He therefore puts it on the
of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom same level with uncircumcision, which no
{through wliich) the world is {hath been) Jewish or Gentile convert was foolish enough
crucified unto me, and I unto the Avorld. to iiTiHgine a means of acceptance with God.
The expression ^far be it yevoiro) is alwa3-s
' f/ii>i In fact, both Jews and Gentiles were con-
employed by the apostle to declare his horror demned by the Divine Law which they had
at or repugnance to some doctrine or act. So broken, and their only prospect of recovery
here, the thought of glorying in anything save was through faith in Christ. A new creation
the cross of Christ represented as shocking
is is the one thing needful to a sinner. A new
to his mind. And by
'the cross of Christ he ' birth through the power of tlie Holy Spirit,
certainly means the propitiatory death of the bj' which he enters on a life of love, joy, peace,
Redeemer. In that he was ready to glory and longsuffering, kindness, goodness, fidelity,
exult forever, but in nothing else. In that meekness, self-control, is the only means of
was to befound pardon and peace, victory justification. And this is a new creation : not
over and eternal life in the age to come.
sin, a shoot from the old sinful nature, but a holy
There is a slight ambiguity in the word trans- seed implanted by the Sprit of God and nour-
lated 'which,' as the form of the Greek rela- ished by his grace.
tive must be the same whether it refers to the '
16. And as many as walk (or, shall iralk)
cross' or to the Lord Jesus Christ.'
'
Indeed, by this rule, peace be on them, and
78 GALATIANS. [Ch. VI.

17 From henceforth let no man trouble me: for I 17 From henceforth let no man trouble me: for I
bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus. bear branded on my body the marks of Jesus.
IS Brethren, the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be 18 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your
with your Spirit. Amen. spirit, brethren. Amen.

mercy, and upon the Israel of God. (Kevised Version.) The pronoun 'I' is em-
'This rule,' or canon, is the principle just phatic, implying that
was not true of
this
stated (ver. 15) that everything depends on a Judaizing teachers who had impeached his
new creation in Christ Jesus. And if we adopt authority and attempted to render his work
the reading 'shall walk,' we see that Paul vain. Moreover, he appeals to the scars which
recognizes the necessity of abiding in the truth were in his body as signs of the persecution
and acting in harmony with it. He docs not which he had suffered for Christ's sake, and
invoke the peace of God upon those that are as brand-marks declaring that he was Christ's
now walking bj^ this rule, or that have ac- bondservant. "The marks attested who the
cepted it hitherto, but upon such as continue apostle's Master was." (Ellicott.) "Jesus is
to the end in such a course. And by the my Master, my Protector. His brand is
'

Israel of God he means without doubt the stamped on my body. I bear this badge of
'

true Israel, those who are sons of God through an honorable service." (Lightfoot.) See John
faith in his Son, whether of Jewish or Gentile 15:20; 16:2; 2 Tim. 3 12; 2 Cor. 4 10; : :

descent after the flesh. 11 : 23.


17-18. Personal Kequest and Benedic- 18. Brethren, the grace of our Lord
tion. Jesus Christ, etc. The grace of our Lord
17. From henceforth let man trouble
no Jesus Christ be with your spirit, brethren.
me. That is, by my apos-
calling in question Amen. (Revised Version.) The onlj^ difference
tolic authority or by perverting my gospel. between the Common Version and the Revised
The words may be rendered Hence-
literally : Version is in the position of the word 'brethren.'
forth let no one prepare for me heavy labors, In the original it stands at the close of the sen-
or troubles. For Paul was often oppressed tence, "an unusual and emphatic position; com-
by the care of all the churches, and especially pare Philemon 7." "Thus," saysBengel, "the
when any of them were rent by factions, or severity of the whole Epistle is softened."
were in danger of being led away from the Note also the benediction itself, which directs
truth. Such conditions imposed heavy bur- the minds of his readers to 'the grace of our
dens on him, filled his spirit with anxiety, and Lord Jesus Christ' as the sum of all good.
would have been insupportable but for the And then with the ratifying 'Amen' the great
strength which Christ imparted to him. (Pim. apostle commits this wonderful Epistle to some
4 13.)
: For I bear in my body or, For I faithful messenger, who will bear it quickly to
bear branded on my body the marks of Jesus. the churches of Galatia.
^ .
^-

^- iM
Date Due

.^ V

'aMMwBiHBMiMi ^kb,^

^ ^ -M >-

M- -rM i^ :m
X , % y

>

jf r

'
>

j * V .' ir > > # Jr JT >-


5
BS2341 -^512
V
^^^
the ep^t
Commentary on
Sem,nary_bpe^^,,,,,
Pnnceton Theological ,,,,

1 1012 00056 0617^