Galatians 6:11–18

Read the passage.

In a at least one of Paul’s letters, the secretary who took Paul’s dictation inserted himself into the letter to send his own greetings to the church. More often, though, we see evidence that Paul pens his own conclusions to the letters. To the Galatians, he tells us that we could see the large letters that he wrote, if we had his original manuscript. (Now I wonder if any scribe tried to capture this style when they copied the manuscript.) I can think of a couple of good reasons why he would do this. In chapter 4, he mentioned that the Galatians would have given him their eyes if they could, which implies that there was something wrong with his own eyes. Perhaps his eyesight was poor or became so, and the Galatians could see these large letters and know for sure he wrote them.

Another possibility is that Paul really wants to draw attention to what he’s about to say. In the very next sentence he exposes the true motivations of the ones trying to force the Galatians to become Jews. During the middle of the first century, there was a movement of extreme Jewish nationalism. It’s adherents chafed mightily under Roman rule and were concerned about the Hellenization encroaching on their way of life. They rebelled and agitated enough that Rome eventually sent an army that sacked Jerusalem and completely destroyed the temple in a.d. 70. Before then, these nationalists would be opposed to the church welcoming Gentiles into its number, so Paul says the Judaizer party is trying to make the Gentile believers into Jews in order to appease the nationalists.

Paul reiterates that circumcision in itself does not affect one’s status. Even those who trust in it can not keep the whole law. Instead, what counts is what Christ has done on the cross and what He works through us because of that. Nothing else matters in this world or the next, so let us make much of Him.

Your grace is more amazing than we can comprehend, and we are able to worship You because of it.

369 Words