Read Galatians 2:1-20
First-century Galatian believers in Jesus were being lured into false teaching. Having placed saving faith in Jesus, others were suggesting to them that this simple faith in the Savior’s finished work of the cross and the empty tomb was not enough. It was suggested that they must also adhere to aspects of the Old Testament Law. The arguments seemed convincing and they began to slowly gravitate towards this rationale.
Is faith enough? Is God’s grace void of human performance adequate?
Paul has begun to argue that it is. So far, his argument has been a historical recounting of events. The gospel came to him through a personal encounter with Jesus on the road to Damascus. In fact, the apostle did not even seek out other believers. That was the essence of the latter part of chapter one.
Here in chapter two, his historical argument takes us to years before the writing when Paul, along with others journeyed to Jerusalem. You see, he and others had made a special trip there to bring some finality to the appropriate roles of grace and Law as Gentiles came to faith. In what is now called the “Jerusalem Council” (Acts 15), Paul and others presented a clear case that God’s grace is all that a person needed. And the others present agreed. In fact, these apostles and leaders shook Paul’s hand in agreement. They were of one mind with one mission (although Paul would express that mission largely among Gentiles) of sharing the gospel of the grace of God with others.
I suppose it is possible that you view these verses from Paul and these lines in the devotional as some kind of complicated theological treatise. Please don’t allow yourself to fall into that kind of thinking! At the core, these words are clarifying the gospel you must embrace and proclaim. Is it clear to you? Can you share it with others. This is worth studying.
A relationship with God…
- It’s a relationship we were created to have! (Colossians 1:16)
- It’s a relationship we don’t have because of sin! (Isaiah 59:2, Rom. 6:23a)
- It’s a relationship you can have because of Jesus! (Eph. 2:8, 9; 1 Pet. 3:18)
- It’s a relationship you must choose to have. (Acts 3:19)