Galatians 1:1–6:18

Paul, an apostlea—sent not from men nor by a man,b but by Jesus Christc and God the Father,d who raised him from the deadeand all the brothers and sistersa with me,f

To the churches in Galatia:g

Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ,h who gave himself for our sinsi to rescue us from the present evil age,j according to the will of our God and Father,k to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.l

No Other Gospel

I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who calledm you to live in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospelnwhich is really no gospel at all. Evidently some people are throwing you into confusiono and are trying to pervertp the gospel of Christ. But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you,q let them be under God’s curse!r As we have already said, so now I say again: If anybody is preaching to you a gospel other than what you accepted,s let them be under God’s curse!

10 Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I trying to please people?t If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ.

Paul Called by God

11 I want you to know, brothers and sisters,u that the gospel I preachedv is not of human origin. 12 I did not receive it from any man,w nor was I taught it; rather, I received it by revelationx from Jesus Christ.y

13 For you have heard of my previous way of life in Judaism,z how intensely I persecuted the church of Goda and tried to destroy it.b 14 I was advancing in Judaism beyond many of my own age among my people and was extremely zealousc for the traditions of my fathers.d 15 But when God, who set me apart from my mother’s wombe and called mef by his grace, was pleased 16 to reveal his Son in me so that I might preach him among the Gentiles,g my immediate response was not to consult any human being.h 17 I did not go up to Jerusalem to see those who were apostles before I was, but I went into Arabia. Later I returned to Damascus.i

18 Then after three years,j I went up to Jerusalemk to get acquainted with Cephasb and stayed with him fifteen days. 19 I saw none of the other apostles—only James,l the Lord’s brother. 20 I assure you before Godm that what I am writing you is no lie.n

21 Then I went to Syriao and Cilicia.p 22 I was personally unknown to the churches of Judeaq that are in Christ.r 23 They only heard the report: “The man who formerly persecuted us is now preaching the faiths he once tried to destroy.”t 24 And they praised Godu because of me.

Paul Accepted by the Apostles

2 Then after fourteen years, I went up again to Jerusalem,v this time with Barnabas.w I took Titusx along also. I went in response to a revelationy and, meeting privately with those esteemed as leaders, I presented to them the gospel that I preach among the Gentiles.z I wanted to be sure I was not running and had not been running my racea in vain. Yet not even Titus,b who was with me, was compelled to be circumcised, even though he was a Greek.c This matter arose because some false believersd had infiltrated our ranks to spy one the freedomf we have in Christ Jesus and to make us slaves. We did not give in to them for a moment, so that the truth of the gospelg might be preserved for you.

As for those who were held in high esteemh—whatever they were makes no difference to me; God does not show favoritismi—they added nothing to my message.j On the contrary, they recognized that I had been entrusted with the taskk of preaching the gospel to the uncircumcised,a l just as Peterm had been to the circumcised.b For God, who was at work in Peter as an apostlen to the circumcised, was also at work in me as an apostleo to the Gentiles. James,p Cephasc q and John, those esteemed as pillars,r gave me and Barnabass the right hand of fellowship when they recognized the grace given to me.t They agreed that we should go to the Gentiles,u and they to the circumcised. 10 All they asked was that we should continue to remember the poor,v the very thing I had been eager to do all along.

Paul Opposes Cephas

11 When Cephasw came to Antioch,x I opposed him to his face, because he stood condemned. 12 For before certain men came from James,y he used to eat with the Gentiles.z But when they arrived, he began to draw back and separate himself from the Gentiles because he was afraid of those who belonged to the circumcision group.a 13 The other Jews joined him in his hypocrisy, so that by their hypocrisy even Barnabasb was led astray.

14 When I saw that they were not acting in line with the truth of the gospel,c I said to Cephasd in front of them all, “You are a Jew, yet you live like a Gentile and not like a Jew.e How is it, then, that you force Gentiles to follow Jewish customs?f

15 “We who are Jews by birthg and not sinful Gentilesh 16 know that a person is not justified by the works of the law,i but by faith in Jesus Christ.j So we, too, have put our faith in Christ Jesus that we may be justified by faith ind Christ and not by the works of the law, because by the works of the law no one will be justified.k

17 “But if, in seeking to be justified in Christ, we Jews find ourselves also among the sinners,l doesn’t that mean that Christ promotes sin? Absolutely not!m 18 If I rebuild what I destroyed, then I really would be a lawbreaker.

19 “For through the law I died to the lawn so that I might live for God.o 20 I have been crucified with Christp and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me.q The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God,r who loved mes and gave himself for me.t 21 I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law,u Christ died for nothing!”e

Faith or Works of the Law

3 You foolishv Galatians!w Who has bewitched you?x Before your very eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed as crucified.y I would like to learn just one thing from you: Did you receive the Spiritz by the works of the law,a or by believing what you heard?b Are you so foolish? After beginning by means of the Spirit, are you now trying to finish by means of the flesh?a Have you experiencedb so much in vain—if it really was in vain? So again I ask, does God give you his Spirit and work miraclesc among you by the works of the law, or by your believing what you heard?d So also Abraham “believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness.”c e

Understand, then, that those who have faithf are children of Abraham.g Scripture foresaw that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, and announced the gospel in advance to Abraham: “All nations will be blessed through you.”d h So those who rely on faithi are blessed along with Abraham, the man of faith.j

10 For all who rely on the works of the lawk are under a curse,l as it is written: “Cursed is everyone who does not continue to do everything written in the Book of the Law.”e m 11 Clearly no one who relies on the law is justified before God,n because “the righteous will live by faith.”f o 12 The law is not based on faith; on the contrary, it says, “The person who does these things will live by them.”g p 13 Christ redeemed us from the curse of the lawq by becoming a curse for us, for it is written: “Cursed is everyone who is hung on a pole.”h r 14 He redeemed us in order that the blessing given to Abraham might come to the Gentiles through Christ Jesus,s so that by faith we might receive the promise of the Spirit.t

The Law and the Promise

15 Brothers and sisters,u let me take an example from everyday life. Just as no one can set aside or add to a human covenant that has been duly established, so it is in this case. 16 The promises were spoken to Abraham and to his seed.v Scripture does not say “and to seeds,” meaning many people, but “and to your seed,”i w meaning one person, who is Christ. 17 What I mean is this: The law, introduced 430 yearsx later, does not set aside the covenant previously established by God and thus do away with the promise. 18 For if the inheritance depends on the law, then it no longer depends on the promise;y but God in his grace gave it to Abraham through a promise.

19 Why, then, was the law given at all? It was added because of transgressionsz until the Seeda to whom the promise referred had come. The law was given through angelsb and entrusted to a mediator.c 20 A mediator,d however, implies more than one party; but God is one.

21 Is the law, therefore, opposed to the promises of God? Absolutely not!e For if a law had been given that could impart life, then righteousness would certainly have come by the law.f 22 But Scripture has locked up everything under the control of sin,g so that what was promised, being given through faith in Jesus Christ, might be given to those who believe.

Children of God

23 Before the coming of this faith,j we were held in custodyh under the law, locked up until the faith that was to come would be revealed.i 24 So the law was our guardian until Christ camej that we might be justified by faith.k 25 Now that this faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian.l

26 So in Christ Jesus you are all children of Godm through faith, 27 for all of you who were baptized into Christn have clothed yourselves with Christ.o 28 There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free,p nor is there male and female,q for you are all one in Christ Jesus.r 29 If you belong to Christ,s then you are Abraham’s seed,t and heirsu according to the promise.v

4 What I am saying is that as long as an heir is underage, he is no different from a slave, although he owns the whole estate. The heir is subject to guardians and trustees until the time set by his father. So also, when we were underage, we were in slaveryw under the elemental spiritual forcesa of the world.x But when the set time had fully come,y God sent his Son,z born of a woman,a born under the law,b to redeemc those under the law, that we might receive …

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