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Quits Sabio
Elder at Sovereign Mercy Evangelical Church Inc. and President of Reformed Exegetes Society
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The first Christmas happened in order to establish God's kingdom through His Son Jesus Christ.
Haggai 2:20-23
When He who is clean, namely the Lord Jesus Christ, touched us, we are made clean
Haggai 2:10-19
For all of his bigness, our God has a remarkable love for the small. - Scott Hubbard
Haggai 2:1-9
We should align our priorities with God's priorities, because only when we do so we can be truly satisfied.
Haggai 1:1-15
Where there is hope, there is life (and faith and love) - J. Scott Duvall
Colossians 1:4-5
To walk worthy of our calling is not to call attention to our own worth but to show the worth of our calling
Ephesians 4:1-6
How does a soul magnify the Lord?
Luke 1:39-56
The Death that Delivers From Fear of Death
Hebrews 2:5-15
What is a fruitful life?
John 15:1-7
How can God make much of us and still be for Himself?
Ephesians 1:3-14
Elect Exiles According To The Foreknowledge Of The Father, In The Sanctification Of The Spirit, For Blood Bought Obedience To Jesus
1 Peter 1:1-2
Christian Hospitality Covers a Multitude  of Sin
1 Peter 4
No one can take away your joy from you - Jesus
John 16:16-22
True knowledge about God will result in true love for others.
1 Corinthians 8:1-3
In sin we were dead but in Chirst we were made alive.
Ephesians 2:1-10
To be under the Mosaic law again is not only childish, but also devilish and damning.
Galatians 4:8-11
Beware of working for God! Instead, gladly obey God as our Father and not as our taskmaster.
Galatians 4:1-7
The law serves the promise until the coming of the seed
Galatians 3:19-22
The Law cannot nullify the Promise
Galatians 3:15-18
Law demands a life of perfect obedience, but Faith demands a life of faith in Christ's act of redemption alone
Galatians 3:9-14
Faith is the spiritual DNA by which our familial relationship to Abraham can be proven.
Galatians 3:6-9
We can't start with the Spirit and then end with the flesh
Galatians 3:1-5
What is dying to the law and living to God?
Galatians 2:15-21
Lead others to the truth of the gospel not just with propositions but also with our actions.
Galatians 2:11-14
How important that there is only one gospel?
Galatians 2:1-10
What are you hoping for?
Psalm 42:11
No other gospel that brings glory to God than the gospel of grace that transforms its messenger
Galatians 1:18-24
If you want to please God, seek what pleases Him, namely the preaching of Christ
Galatians 1:11-17
Want some peace of mind? So Pray!
Philippians 4:6-7
What brings understanding, our thinking or God's granting?
2 Timothy 2:7
What it means to be a slave of Christ?
Galatians 1:10
To desert from the Gospel is to desert away from God
Galatians 1:6-9
God gets more glory when more people rely on Him for contentment in times of need.
Philippians 4:10-20
Standing Firm in the Lord demonstrates itself in unity, peacekeeping, rejoicing in the Lord always and forbearance toward one another
Philippians 4:1-9
Resurrection is a means to lay hold of the prize who is Christ Jesus so strive to attain it since He already laid hold of you
Philippians 3:12-21
Jesus came into the world to exegete the Father
John 1:1-18
God is more glorified in us when we enjoy him than when we fear him
Luke 2:8-20
The supremacy of the worth of Christ outweighs all things, and that includes all human boastings!
Philippians 3:1-11
Risking for Jesus will yield greater returns
Philippians 2:25-30
Seeking the interest of Christ is seeking the interest of others above one's own
Philippians 2:19-24
What is the secret to a grumble free life and happy pastors?
Philippians 2:14-16
God is not wasting our suffering,  we shouldn't also
Philippians 1:12-18
How to work out your own Salvation?
Philippians 2:12-18
Motivations for Obedience
Philippians 2:12-13
Christ Emptied himself by Adding
Philippians 2:6-7
Christian unity delights itself in the interest of others
Philippians 2:1-5
To Know Christ is to have the will of the Father
John 7:17-18
Find your Joy in God in the joy of your leaders and the flock
Hebrews 13:17
The Church Abides to Chirst so should Wives to their Husbands. Christ never forsake His Church, so should Husbands to their Wives
Ephesians 5:22-33
Herald the word even if your life is at stake
2 Timothy 4:2
Any talk of gender roles and equality must be grounded on creation.
1 Corinthians 11:7-12
There is Joy in praying for the sanctification of our brethren!
Philippians 1:3-11
Since God is righteous, God must elect according to his own freedom
Romans 9:14-18
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Paul: Sent from God
Galatians 1:1-5
Seek God's approval and not the approval of men
Published February 3rd, 2019; Updated February 3rd, 2019
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Main point summary
Arc 1:1-5
Diagram 1:1
Diagram 1:3
Diagram 1:4-5
Main point summary
Christians' allegiance must be to God and his glory alone and not to men, because it is by the will of God the Father, Jesus Christ was raised from the dead in order to save us from this present evil age.
Arc 1:1-5
Galatians 1:1-5
Paul, an a apostle—
Παῦλος ἀπόστολος
From Paul, 1 an apostle
Paul, a an apostle
[From] Paul, an apostle
b not from men nor
οὐκ ἀπʼ ἀνθρώπων
(not from men,
( b not sent from men
([sent] not from men,
through man,
οὐδὲ διʼ ἀνθρώπου
nor by human agency,
nor through the agency of man,
nor through human [agency],
but c through Jesus Christ
ἀλλὰ διὰ Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ
but by Jesus Christ
but c through Jesus Christ
but [sent ultimately] by Jesus Christ
and God the Father,
καὶ θεοῦ πατρὸς
and God the Father
and God the Father,
and God the Father,
d who raised him from the dead—
τοῦ ἐγείραντος αὐτὸν ἐκ νεκρῶν,
who raised him from the dead)
who d raised Him from the dead),
who raised him from the dead)
and all e the brothers 1 who are with me,
καὶ οἱ σὺν ἐμοὶ πάντες ἀδελφοὶ
and all the brothers with me,
and all a the brethren who are with me,
and with the brothers with me, [those who share the same concerns]
To f the churches of Galatia:
ταῖς ἐκκλησίαις τῆς Γαλατίας,
to the churches of Galatia.
To b the churches of Galatia:
[writing] to the churches of Galatia.
g Grace to you and peace h from God our Father
χάρις ὑμῖν
Grace and peace to you 2 from God the Father
a Grace to you and peace from 1 God our Father
Grace [be] to you
καὶ εἰρήνη ἀπὸ θεοῦ πατρὸς ἡμῶν
and peace [be] from God the Father
and the Lord Jesus Christ,
καὶ κυρίου Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ
and our 3 Lord Jesus Christ,
and the Lord Jesus Christ,
and our Lord Jesus Christ,
i who gave himself for our sins
τοῦ δόντος ἑαυτὸν ὑπὲρ τῶν ἁμαρτιῶν ἡμῶν,
who gave himself for our sins
who a gave Himself for our sins
[because] [Jesus] gave himself for our sins
to deliver us from the present j evil age, according to the will of k our God and Father,
ὅπως ἐξέληται ἡμᾶς ἐκ τοῦ αἰῶνος τοῦ ἐνεστῶτος πονηροῦ
to rescue us from this present evil age according to the will of our God and Father,
so that He might rescue us from b this present evil 1 age, according to the will of c our God and Father,
in order to rescue us from this present evil age
κατὰ τὸ θέλημα τοῦ θεοῦ καὶ πατρὸς ἡμῶν,
according to the will of our God and Father,
to whom be the glory forever and ever. Amen.
ᾧ ἡ δόξα εἰς τοὺς αἰῶνας τῶν αἰώνων, ἀμήν.
to whom be glory forever and ever! Amen.
a to whom be the glory forevermore. Amen.
[in order that] glory [be] to [God] forever and ever! Amen.
Diagram 1:1
Galatians 1:1
Galatians 1:1
Diagram 1:3
Galatians 1:3
Galatians 1:3
Diagram 1:4-5
Galatians 1:4-5
Galatians 1:4
Galatians 1:5
[From] Paul, an apostle ([sent] not from men, nor through human [agency], but [sent ultimately] by Jesus Christ and God the Father, who raised him from the dead) and with the brothers with me, [those who share the same concerns] [writing] to the churches of Galatia. Grace [be] to you and peace [be] from God the Father and our Lord Jesus Christ, [because] [Jesus] gave himself for our sins in order to rescue us from this present evil age according to the will of our God and Father, [in order that] glory [be] to [God] forever and ever! Amen.
One of my favourite stories from the late Dr. R.C. Sproul Sr. is an illustration from his childhood experience that demonstrates the importance of knowing the source or origin of the Scripture. He said: 'When I was a little boy, there was a fellow in our community who was a couple of years older than me, and he was something of a bully. He made fun of me and called me names, which hurt my feelings. Sometimes I came home crying to my mother and told her what the other boy had said to upset me. My mother had a favorite response to this. As she wiped away my tears, she said, “When people talk like that about you, son, consider the source.”' The point RC was making in telling the story was to show that the authority and trustworthiness of the Bible lies in the source. We should not believe it if the source is proven to be unreliable, and since God is the source and he is reliable therefore we should read and believe it. Same is true with Paul's authority and trustworthiness. We must believe and obey him because his words are not just his but God's. However, many questioned his apostolic authority just as many today reject the idea of absolute authority. They're not considering the source. Now my main aim is to show not only the origin or source of Paul's authority as an apostle but also the reason why he stated it the way he did, because the deeper issue was not just his claim for authority but that many who claim to be Christians find their allegiance in men rather than in God. They would rather please men instead of pleasing God. These people appeal to men's approval than God's approval for their authority.
Few Words on Salutation But before I begin my exposition of Galatians 1:1-5, let's make sure first how not to read an epistle's salutation. I want to start this way because most of the time we skipped over it, thinking that all the good stuff can only be found in the body of the letter. Such is not the case when we look closely on the text. Same goes with the opposite extreme where one is reading too much into it that you lose track of why the author wrote the salutation in such a manner. So how not to read a salutation then? 1. Don't read it while importing unnecessary facts about the author from other books in the Bible. Things like the origin of the author's name, or how he came to change his name from Saul to Paul(is it even a legitimate question?), or who he was according to the narratives. Unless you're like; "Paul who?" As in zero knowledge about the author. Then by all means read the book of Acts. But let Paul introduce himself to us. Let him determine what we need to know about him in light of his epistle. Yes it is true that Paul had a thorn in the flesh according to 2 Corinthians 12:7-10, but does a knowledge about it helps us understand Paul's tone and temperament in this letter? I don't think so. Worst, it can sometimes be very misleading. 2. Don't read the salutation as if all that you can learn from it is the sender's name, the letter's recipients, and how nice this guy was that he almost always greeted them with a wish that grace and peace be to them. Most of Paul's letters share the same salutation structure or formula, but they also have distinct characteristics that one must take note of. 3. Don't read it thinking you need to become an archeology, geography or history "expert" in order to understand it. First we are no expert, second much of what we need to know about who the recipients were are in the text already. You don't need to find out some hidden clues or artifacts, or culture that may or may not be accurate anyways. We'll know if there's a cultural gap when we read the text, only then you should inquire from extra biblical sources. Just as Thomas Schreiner said about the identity of the recipients; "Was the letter to the Galatians written to south or north Galatia? Why does it even matter? It should be said at the outset that the destination of the letter does not fundamentally change its interpretation." It doesn't affect interpretation but it does affect historical accuracy. But the good thing is you can read Galatians and interpret it without the need of being a biblical historian. Don't get me wrong, historical accuracy is essential too, but let us be very careful, lest we exaggerate things out of proportion when we deal with extra biblical data. 4. Don't read the salutation and neglect the wealth of knowledge we can learn from it. Remember to pay attention why an author wrote the way he did. For example don't miss the fact that Paul brought at the outset the two major themes of the letter. His apostolic authority in verse 1-2 and the gospel that he's about to proclaim authoritatively in verse 3-5. The point is not to bring unnecessary stuff into the text that is not going to help us understand the passage well(even if it's true). Or to put it positively, ask the right questions and seek the right answers from the text as much as possible. Paul's Apostolic Authority(verse 1) Now let's move on to exposition. Paul claimed to be an apostle in verse 1 and most of you already know that it simply means someone who is sent. But there are two usage of the word apostle in the Bible. The first one is more of a loose or a general usage usually translated in our English Bibles as "messenger" sent by a church as a delegate or representative. Like in Philippians 2:25 where Paul refers to Epaphroditus as their messenger. It's the same greek word αποστολον or "apostolon". The second usage is a more narrow or specific usage that refers to a particular office that Christ himself commissioned. An office considered to be the foundation by which we stand as a church, and therefore can never be repeated as in 1 Cor. 3:10, 9:1,14:37, 38; Eph. 2:20; Ephesians 3:3-5 So which of the two Paul meant when he claimed to be an apostle? not from men nor through human agency The context gives us the answer. Paul explicitly denies the former in verse 1. He said "an apostle not from men, nor through human agency." Not only it's an explicit denial but also an emphatic denial. He placed the negative in the emphatic position. He could've said "I'm sent by the will of God and not by the will of men" instead he starts with the denial. More than that, it's doubly emphatic because of the two negatives. So who then commissioned Paul? but by Jesus Christ and God the Father I want you to take note of the asymmetrical parallelism of the denial and affirmation. In English it's not quite noticeable but in greek it's unmistakable. In the denial Paul used two greek prepositions with different objects, απο translated as "from", and δια translated as "through" or "by". This is to distinguish an intermediary from the ultimate commissioner. Paul however, used only one preposition in the affirmative; "but sent by Jesus Christ and God the Father". Notice how the preposition δια or "by" takes Jesus Christ and God the Father as its objects. They are governed by the same preposition. Paul here implies Jesus's divine authority by identifying Him with the Father to be the one who called him as an apostle without any intermediary. He was commissioned by Christ and God the Father directly. who raised him Then Paul ended his introduction of himself with an allusion to Christ's resurrection by the Father. The only other place in the New Testament where he alluded to the resurrection in his introduction is in Romans 1:4. It is not directly connected to his apostleship though but instead connected with the very message he was sent to proclaim, namely the gospel of God. Just as the gospel about Christ finds its source in God, so thus his calling as an apostle through Christ finds its ultimate agency in God. from the dead This of course presupposes that Jesus died. By putting the resurrection at the very forefront, Paul is setting up the stage for a more elaborate explanation in verse 4 as to why the resurrection was needed in the first place. So to sum this section up, according to Dr. Gordon Fee; "The emphatic contrast with which Paul describes his apostleship is intended to underline its divine origin: he asserts that his apostolic commission, with regard to both its source and its mediation, was from God and Christ, just as a little later on he will categorically declare that his gospel, with regard to both its source and the manner in which it was communicated to him, was a direct revelation from God (1:12, 16)" and with the brothers with me(verse2) This doesn't mean that Paul co-authored this letter with other Christians. It is just to show that he was not a lone ranger who was unrecognized by other Christians. Meaning, those who were with him shared the same concerns. According to Douglas Moo: "It is not unusual for Paul to include others in his letter openings: Sosthenes in 1 Cor. 1:1; Timothy in 2 Cor. 1:1; Phil. 1:1; Col. 1:1; Philem. 1; Silas and Timothy in 1 Thess. 1:1; 2 Thess. 1:1. But Galatians is again unique in Paul’s inclusion of such a large and undefined group. The personal and even emotional tone of the letter reveals that Paul is the sole author. He undoubtedly includes this wider group to lend strength to his appeal: the views he is teaching in the letter are not his alone but are widely shared." I agree with Dr. Moo that this is to lend strength to his appeal, however, we need to understand that Paul's appeal is more about the orthodoxy of his message and not on human authority. Otherwise it will undermine his claim for apostolic authority. That is, if indeed his message was from God, it will be shared by others as well, and so maintain that his appeal was to God's authority alone and not to men. to the Churches of Galatia(verse 2) Now from the sender, we move now to the recipients. Again we should let the text tell us what is relevant to know about the recipient. The geographical location is not that relevant at the moment. What is relevant though is the fact that this is not a megachurch like what we have nowadays. Paul wrote to churches. Unlike the church at Philippi where he can address specific people by name and by office(Philippians 1:1; 4:2), here the letter was addressed to different churches. Some have argued that Paul founded these churches as a result of his missionary journeys from Acts 13:14-14:23; 16:1-5. That maybe the case but the more important question to ask is why write a letter at all? The reason why Paul wrote the letter primarily was to address their departure from the gospel, which I will tackle at length in verses 6-9 when we get there, but for now let's be content of what we need to know about the churches at Galatia. Grace to you and Peace from God the Father and our Lord Jesus Christ(verse 3) So what can we learn from Paul's customary greetings to these churches? These greetings are not just for niceties. Just as Paul's introduction about himself was a setup to point to God's supremacy, so too this section is a setup to show the supremacy of Christ in our salvation by the will of God the Father and for his glorification. Dr. John MacArthur said in his commentary on Paul's letter to Galatians; " Two of the most precious words related to that God-given gospel are grace and peace. The first is the source of salvation and the second is the result. Grace is positional, peace is practical, and together they flow from God our Father through His Son and our Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ." We know that is the case because there's an implied verb of being there "Grace [be] to you and peace [be] from God the Father and our Lord Jesus Christ" We must determine how the conjunction "and" functions as it connects the two clauses. I'm arguing that it is an action and result relationship or at least a progression relationship. I based that on how Paul supported verse 3 by explaining who this Jesus was and what did he accomplished in verse 4. We receive grace because Christ gave himself to die for our sins, with a purpose of attaining for us peace with God by rescuing us from this present evil age according to the will of God the Father. What is the implication of this very slanted salutation then? Paul is not just an apostle sent by God himself, but more importantly the One who sent him owned him and everyone else. Therefore he can only seek the approval of God and please Him. Paul said in verse 10 that he's not trying to please men. He answers to God and God alone otherwise he would no longer be a slave of Christ. This salutation argues not for Paul's authority primarily but God's absolute authority in his church. to whom be glory forever and ever! Amen.(verse 5) Lastly Paul wrote the way he did in order to highlight the glory of God and not his own glory. Verse 5 is the ultimate purpose of why Christ died. Christ died in order to save us and therefore bought us according to God's will so that he alone gets all the glory. Therefore brethren, departing from the gospel is a falling short of the glory God. It is saying that your allegiance is not to God but to ourselves. So cling to the gospel, cling to the cross, boast only in the Lord. Seek God's approval and not men because he is worthy of our trust, allegiance and obedience.
Disclaimer: The opinions and conclusions expressed on this page are those of the author and may or may not accord with the positions of Biblearc or Bethlehem College & Seminary.