Galatians [1:1-5]

Estimated reading time: 4 minute(s)

I have been wanting to read through Galatians for a while, and I thought it would be fun to read through it here, and comment as I go. This will not be a scholarly, in-depth, research-style commentary… just my thoughts as I read. Feel free to post yours as well.

 Galatians 1:1-5

This letter is from Paul, an apostle. I was not appointed by any group or by human authority. My call is from Jesus Christ himself and from God the Father, who raised Jesus from the dead.

This reminds me of me. People always want pointers on how I made our “ministry” succeed, but without exception I must tell them, “It wasn’t me.” God called, God led, and God provided any level of “success” that anyone observed in us. It wasn’t my own idea, or anyone elses (save perhaps my Dad… he’s probably thinking, “Waaaaaaait a minute! I had something to do with this!” But, I actually stopped after he started us, then God called us back to it.

Point is, this is the coolest way to do life. To follow the voice, the call, of God for you. Not his call for someone else that looks like fun for you. 🙂 Not something someone else thinks you should do. Listen for His voice.

All the brothers and sisters here join me in sending greetings to the churches of Galatia.

May grace and peace be yours from God our Father and from the Lord Jesus Christ. He died for our sins, just as God our Father planned, in order to rescue us from this evil world in which we live. That is why all glory belongs to God through all the ages of eternity. Amen.

That is why? That sounded funny to me. That is why all glory belongs to God. Immediately preceeding that, was the cross. He died – in order to rescue us. That is why all Glory belongs to him.

There must be more than that, you might think. I do! Isn’t he deserving because of His creation? From the vast universe to the tiny atom… the intricacies of just the human eye. The power of the oceans and grandeur of the mountains. The softness of a tiny newborn baby. Isn’t he due some glory for that? What about Him??? He is forever, without end. He is all powerful, all knowing, all everything. He is infinitely large, yet lives inside me. He is Judge over all, yet chose to love me.

That’s it right there, isn’t it. His supreme power was willingly laid down in favor of His supreme love. Not that He lost any power, just chose (in His supreme power) to not excersize it for the benefit of me. And you. And… Him.

It says, “He died for our sins, just as God our Father planned…” From the beginning of time, God had decided, had planned to step in on our behalf. To forego his right to judge in order to repair the relationship with us. Consider Romans 5:10…

“…we were restored to friendship with God by the death of his Son…”

There is something else important in this line to the Galatians that Paul was talking about in Romans. The reason Jesus died on the cross. It’s not just to pay for our sins. That is spoken of in Romans 3, but not mentioned here. It’s not just to give us a way into eternal life. Those are well and good… but not the focus here. The reason given here mirrors the Romans 5 idea: restoration. “He died in order to rescue us from this evil world in which we live.” Plain and simple. Jesus came to give us life – to save us from this messed up one. Not in the “hereafter”, but in the here. Life to the full, as friends of God… here. And forever.

And in all of that, we know his grace (we don’t deserve that sort of treatment) and we know his peace (when someone loves you like that, what can go wrong?) Paul offers us that right off the bat. Not the forget-all-the-bad-stuff-and-slap-on-a-smile sort of peace. No, this is based in the all-powerful, timeless God planning long ago to demonstrate his love by giving his own life so that we could be restored to a full relationship with him… forever.

That wipes away guilt. That brings deep pools of grace. That peace washes over us, refreshing and calming and cleansing every piece of us.

That gives us life.

Grace and Peace to you today. He loves us.

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