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September 2, 2017 at 9:15 pm #41082Mari – AdministratorKeymaster
Galatians Chapter 1
By Marti PA
“Paul, an apostle, (not of men, neither by man, but by Jesus Christ, and God the Father, who raised Him from the dead;) And all the brethren which are with me, unto the churches of Galatia:” (vs. 1-2)
I’m stopping here because it is very important to realize that Paul was not called to be an apostle by any man, nor did he dub himself one. He was, in fact, called to be an apostle by the Lord Jesus Christ Himself. His calling came after Christ rose from the dead and ascended into Heaven. This is important for us to know because Paul’s letters are specifically to the Gentile churches both then and now. With Paul’s calling as an Apostle came his calling to establish the Gentile Christian churches also – the Body of Christ.
Recall his testimony in Acts 26 as he is relaying what the Lord had told him, “…delivering thee from the people, and the Gentiles, unto whom now I send thee, to open their eyes, to turn from darkness to light, and the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in Me.”
And in 2 Timothy 1:10-11, “…our Savior Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel: whereunto I am appointed a preacher, and an apostle, and a teacher of the Gentiles.”
There are also other verses where Paul makes it clear that he was personally called by Jesus Christ to be the Apostle to the Gentiles.
Paul is our Apostle! We need to learn what he has to say in his epistles.
Much is made and said of the gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John; however, Paul’s epistles are just as, if not more important than those, because what Paul tells us was information given to him from the ascended Lord, a lot of which was not known before in the Old Testament or the four Gospels. We must understand that with Paul’s writings come the fulfillment of the Word of God … “Whereof I am made a minister, according to the dispensation of God which is given to me for you, to fulfill the Word of God;” (Colossians 2:25)
If you are not reading Paul’s letters, you will be missing out on a lot of divine revelation from our Lord and Savior!
“Grace be to you and peace from God the Father, and from our Lord Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for our sins, that He might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father:” (vs. 3-4)
Two gems stand out here to me:
- Usually around the Good Friday/Easter holiday, there may be talk in the sermons we hear on “who killed Jesus.” Some say the Jews, others say the Romans, still others say the Jews and the Romans did it. Today, I’ve even heard people say, “I killed Him,” inferring that their sins put Him there, so they killed Jesus. In different ways, these statements have some truth to them.
But what do the Scriptures say?
They say that … He GAVE Himself.
Hear Jesus’ OWN words …
“Therefore doth my Father love Me, because I LAY DOWN MY LIFE, that I might take it again. NO MAN TAKETH IT FROM ME, BUT I LAY IT DOWN OF MYSELF. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father.” (John 10:17-18)
Also this …
“Hereby perceive we the love of God, because HE LAID DOWN HIS LIFE for us…” (1 John 3:16)
Bottom line … He allowed everything that happened that day to happen. Everything. To everyone there, it may have ‘looked like’ the Jews and Romans were taking His life; however, before the world began it was determined that the second person of the God-head, God the Son, would become a man, Jesus Christ, so that He could die for the sins of mankind to be able to give them eternal life through Him … this is mystery truth …
“In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began. But hath in due times manifested His word through preaching, which is committed unto me [Paul] according to the commandment of God our Savior” (Titus 1:2-3)
“Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began, but is now made manifest by the appearing of our Savior Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel: Whereunto I am appointed a preacher, and an apostle, and a teacher of the Gentiles.” (2 Timothy 1:9-11)
The innocent Jesus Christ WILLINGLY laid down His life for me, for you, for the whole world. That was the plan from the beginning, but that plan was not fully revealed until Paul made it known …
“Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.” (1 Corinthians 2:8)
The Jews, the Romans … they were just pawns in the plan.
- Sometimes believers want to know what the “will of God” is for them. While I could direct you to many scriptures in the Word that would show you, there is one right here in the verse we started with above:
It was the will of God that we be delivered from this present evil world through Christ’s death for our sins.
Once saved, you are delivered (set free) from “the power of Satan unto God,” (Acts 26:18) and “delivered [set free] from the power of darkness into the kingdom of His dear Son.” (Colossians 1:13)
This present evil world (with its philosophies, religions, ideologies and wisdom) is Satan’s to rule.
“And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins; Wherein in time past YE WALKED according to the COURSE OF THIS WORLD, according to the PRINCE OF THE POWER OF THE AIR [Satan], the spirit that now works in the CHILDREN OF DISOBEDIENCE [the unsaved].” (Ephesians 2:1-2)
Everyone born into this world is “under the thumb” of Satan, so to speak. We only become totally free from him when we believe the Gospel that saves – the Gospel of Grace – that Christ died for our sins, was buried, and rose again for our justification, as the scriptures say. When we believe this, Satan no longer has any authority over us! We are set free FROM Satan. But not only that …
As believers, we have been set free TO know and love God, and serve Him; set free TObe able to understand the Word of God and be in a relationship Him. Before a person is saved, this is not possible.
Are you praising the Lord for your salvation yet?
“I marvel that ye are so soon removed from Him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ.” (vs. 6-7)
Paul had heard that the churches in Galatia were listening to and heeding some false teaching that was going on thereabouts. Apparently, there were those who were preaching another gospel, yet not totally another, but a perversion of the real one! Let us remember the REAL one: “Christ died for our sins, was buried, and rose again from the dead,” found in 1 Corinthians 15:1-4.
As we go on in this letter we will see how they were doing this, but I don’t want to get ahead of myself.
“But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. As we said before, so say I now again, if any preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.” (vs. 8-9)
Now that’s some harsh talkin’ right there! You see, the gospel that Paul preached was the gospel given to him by the ascended Lord for mankind’s salvation and you just don’t mess with what God says and try to change it! Ever.
Paul totally cannot believe that these people were falling for a bunch of hogwash after they had explicitly heard the truth AND received it! It confounds him! So, he is going to set them straight.
“For I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man. For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ.” (vs. 11-12)
Make no mistake, the gospel that Paul preaches did NOT come from any man (not the other 12 apostles; not nobody, as they say). It came solely by the revelation of Jesus Christ. Now, if that’s case, and it is, they and we need to believe Paul’s gospel for salvation!
“But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother’s womb, and called me by His grace, to reveal His Son in me, that I might preach Him among the heathen; immediately I conferred not with flesh and blood: neither went I up to Jerusalem to them which were apostles before me; but I went into Arabia, and returned again unto Damascus.” (vs. 15-17)
It was God’s pleasure to separate Paul while still in his mother’s womb, and call Paul by His grace, to preach Jesus Christ among the heathen, those who were not of the nation of Israel and without God in the world at the time. His conversion testimony is found three times in Acts chapters 9, 22 and 26.
“Then after three years I went up to Jerusalem to see Peter, and abode with him 15 days. But other of the apostles saw I none, save James the Lord’s brother.” (vs. 18-19)
It appears to me that Paul spent literally three years avoiding the leaders of the Messianic church in Jerusalem. Maybe he did not want them to influence him so soon after his conversion. It was during those three years that he continued to get direct revelation from the Lord regarding some “new information.” (Remember that when you read your Bible through, the truth given is progressively revealed, or unfolding, so all truth didn’t end at the four Gospels. There was more truth coming; and it came by the ascended Lord to Paul forus.)
“Now the things which I write unto you, behold, before God, I lie not. Afterwards I came into the regions of Syria and Cilicia; and was unknown by face unto the churches of Judea which were in Christ: but they had heard only, that he which persecuted us in times past now preaches the faith which once he destroyed. And they glorified God in me.” (vs. 20-24)
At one time Paul persecuted the Messianic Jews and tried to destroy their faith in Jesus as the Son of God, the Messiah … For ye have heard of my conversation in time past in the Jews’ religion, how that beyond measure I persecuted the church of God, and wasted it: And profited in the Jews’ religion above many my equals in mine own nation, being more exceedingly zealous of the traditions of my fathers.” Galatians 1:13-14.
But now, Paul is preaching and teaching that, indeed, Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and not only that, but His death, His shed blood, was for the forgiveness of sins and His resurrection was for our justification and eternal life! (see Romans 3:23-25; 4:25; 6:23)
Chapter 2 coming….
THE GOSPEL THAT SAVES
“I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; by which also ye are saved … that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:”
– 1 Corinthians 15:1-4 (KJB)
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