2 I would like to learn just one thing from you: Did you receive the Spirit by the works of the law, or by believing what you heard? "The Spirit from without, kindles within us some spark of faith Whereby we lay hold of Christ, and even of the Spirit Himself, that He may dwell within us" [FLACIUS]. Commentaries for Galatians Chapter 3 Paul's Exposition of Promise and Law. What does Galatians chapter 3 mean? by faith of Jesus Christ--that is which is by faith in Jesus Christ. I prefer understanding it as a mitigation of the preceding words. written--( Deuteronomy 21:23 ). Christ is "Abraham's seed" ( Galatians 3:16 ): ye are "one in Christ" ( Galatians 3:28 ), and one with Christ, as having "put on Christ" ( Galatians 3:27 ); therefore YE are "Abraham's seed," which is tantamount to saying (whence the "and" is omitted), ye are "heirs according to the promise" (not "by the law," Galatians 3:18 ); for it was to Abraham's seed that the inheritance was promised ( Galatians 3:16 ). 1 O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth, crucified among you? The Jews accordingly, in contempt, call Him Tolvi, "the hanged one," and Christians, "worshippers of the hanged one"; and make it their great objection that He died the accursed death [TRYPHO, in Justin Martyr, p. 249] ( 1 Peter 2:24 ). "Sin, sin! This clause follows not the clause immediately preceding (for our receiving the Spirit is not the result of the blessing of Abraham coming on the Gentiles), but "Christ hath redeemed us," &c. through faith--not by works. But as He promises the blessing in the faithful use of the means, the Church has rightly presumed, in charity, that such is the case, nothing appearing to the contrary. Real Christians enjoy great privileges under the gospel; and are no longer accounted servants, but sons; not now kept at such a distance, and under such restraints as the Jews were. As Christ was "crucified," so ye ought to have been by faith "crucified with Christ," and so "dead to the law" ( Galatians 2:19 Galatians 2:20 ). the scripture--which began to be written after the time of the promise, at the time when the law was given. This is a study guide commentary, which means that you are responsible for your own interpretation of the Bible. In Galatians 3, Paul continues to make the case that faith in Christ is all that is required to be justified—"made righteous"—in God's eyes. would justify--rather, "justifieth." But He lives and shall reign on David's throne. (1) The law “was added” after the covenant and thus was subordinate to it. Salem Media Group. Who has bewitched you that you should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed among you as crucified? Here Jacob received the promise of the blessing, for which God had called Abraham out of Ur, repeated for the last time, on the last night of his sojourn in the land of promise. The written letter was needed SO as PERMANENTLY to convict man of disobedience to God's command. So Matthew, writing for Jews, quotes it as "said," or "spoken"; Mark and Luke, writing for Gentiles, as "written" ( Matthew 1:22 , 1:2 , Luke 2:22 Luke 2:23 ) [TOWNSON]. There is no distinction into male and female. [NEANDER]. He died without posterity. So 2 Corinthians 5:21 , "Sin for us," not sinful, but bearing the whole sin of our race, regarded as one vast aggregate of sin. It is, in truth, the only way wherein any sinners ever were, or can be justified. Roy Riegels, the University of California center, scooped it up and cut across the field. all--Greek neuter, "the universe of things": the whole world, man, and all that appertains to him. Thus delivered up to the judicial law, we see how awful is the doom we deserve: thus the law at last leads us to Christ, with whom we find righteousness and peace. . make . Then the law, by the teaching of the Holy Spirit, becomes his loved rule of duty, and his standard for daily self-examination. Not that the Jews put to death malefactors by hanging; but after having put them to death otherwise, in order to brand them with peculiar ignominy, they hung the bodies on a tree, and such malefactors were accursed by the law (compare Acts 5:30 , 10:39 ). The third chapter of Galatians the apostle Paul begins with a rebuke to these people. It tends every way to promote it. He does not, as in the case of "the covenant," add "enacted by God" ( John 1:17 ). (Galatians 3 Commentary) Vain ( 1500 )( eike ) means without a cause or legitimate reason, for no purpose, and being without any result. His spiritual seed derive their birth from the travail of His soul, being born again of His word, which is the incorruptible seed ( John 1:12 , Romans 9:8 , 1 Peter 1:23 ). The Israelites, though chosen to be God's peculiar people, were sinners as well as others. ... Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary Galatians 3. Then he feels that the mercy and grace of God form his only hope. In Him the lineal descent from David becomes extinct. Christ is to you the toga virilis (the Roman garment of the full-grown man, assumed when ceasing to be a child) [BENGEL]. have put on Christ--Ye did, in that very act of being baptized into Christ, put on, or clothe yourselves with, Christ: so the Greek expresses. Compare Galatians 3:8 , "Scripture," for "the God of the Scripture." By this we learn the difference between the promises of the law and those of the gospel. added--to the original covenant of promise. 10. worketh miracles among you--rather, "IN you," as Galatians 2:8 , Matthew 14:2 , Ephesians 2:2 , Philippians 2:13 ; at your conversion and since [ALFORD]. The promise was given by God himself; the law was given by the ministry of angels, and the hand of a mediator, even Moses. to them that believe--to them that have "the faith of (in) Jesus Christ" just spoken of. It was at this point that Riegels lost his bearings and began to run down field in the wrong direction. There is in this sonship by faith in Christ, no class privileged above another, as the Jews under the law had been above the Gentiles ( Romans 10:12 , 1 Corinthians 12:13 , Colossians 3:11 ). "Anathema" means "set apart to God," to His glory, but to the person's own destruction. This is not inconsistent with Galatians 3:15 , "No man addeth thereto"; for there the kind of addition meant, and therefore denied, is one that would add new conditions, inconsistent with the grace of the covenant of promise. Reference to the "eyes" is appropriate, as fascination was supposed to be exercised through the eyes. faithful--implying what it is in which they are "blessed together with him," namely, faith, the prominent feature of his character, and of which the result to all who like him have it, is justification. . "Having thus begun" with the receiving His spiritual gifts, "are ye now being made perfect" (so the Greek), that is, are ye seeking to be made perfect with "fleshly" ordinances of the law? Understanding the Presence of the Spirit. The apostle proves the doctrine he had blamed the Galatians for rejecting; namely, that of justification by faith without the works of the law. It is no objection to this view, that the Gospel, too, has a mediator ( 1 Timothy 2:5 ). Chapter Summary Paul indicates the Galatian Christians are foolish for believing they need to follow the law of Moses to be right with God. redeemed us--bought us off from our former bondage ( Galatians 4:5 ), and "from the curse" under which all lie who trust to the law and the works of the law for justification. In baptism we put on Christ; therein we profess to be his disciples. promises--plural, because the same promise was often repeated ( Genesis 12:3 Genesis 12:7 , Genesis 15:5 Genesis 15:18 , 17:7 , 22:18 ), and because it involved many things; earthly blessings to the literal children of Abraham in Canaan, and spiritual and heavenly blessings to his spiritual children; but both promised to Christ, "the Seed" and representative Head of the literal and spiritual Israel alike. The apostle in this chapter, I. Reproves the Galatians for their folly, in suffering themselves to be drawn away from the faith of the gospel, and endeavours, from several considerations, to impress … At that point he is superseded by Joshua, the type of Jesus, who leads the true Israel into their inheritance. 28. (26-29). the same--these, and these alone, to the exclusion of all the other descendants of Abraham. Through faith in the promise of God he was blessed; and it is only in the same way that others obtain this privilege. It is wonderful to have a soft, tender heart before God. God forbid." 15. Had it not there for centuries rung in the ear, and fastened on the conscience, the joyful sound, "grace for grace," would not have been the watchword of the New Testament. "Now a mediator cannot be of one (but must be of two parties whom he mediates between); but God is one" (not two: owing to His essential unity not admitting of an intervening party between Him and those to be blessed; but as the ONE Sovereign, His own representative, giving the blessing directly by promise to Abraham, and, in its fulfilment, to Christ, "the Seed," without new condition, and without a mediator such as the law had). a curse for us--Having become what we were, in our behalf, "a curse," that we might cease to be a curse. by angels--as the instrumental enactors of the law [ALFORD] God delegated the law to angels as something rather alien to Him and severe ( Acts 7:53 , Hebrews 2:2 Hebrews 2:3 ; compare Deuteronomy 33:2 , "He came with ten thousands of saints," that is, angels, Psalms 68:17 ). I hear with my own ears that I cannot be saved except by the blood and death of Christ. (10-14) From the covenant of promises, which the law could not disannul. . The dispensation of "the promise" began with the call of Abraham from Ur into Canaan, and ended on the last night of his grandson Jacob's sojourn in Canaan, the land of promise. Christ alone can, by baptizing with His Spirit, make the inward grace correspond to the outward sign. God supplies unto you the Spirit as the result of faith, not works, just as Abraham obtained justification by faith, not by works ( Galatians 3:6 Galatians 3:8 Galatians 3:16 , Galatians 4:22 Galatians 4:26 Galatians 4:28 ). The curse of … The curse had to be removed from off the heathen, too, as well as the Jews, in order that the blessing, through Abraham, might flow to them. . Or, shall ye, by falling from grace, lose the reward promised for all your sufferings, so that they shall be "in vain" ( Galatians 4:11 1 Corinthians 15:2 1 Corinthians 15:17-19 1 Corinthians 15:29-32 2 Thessalonians 1:5-7 2 John 1:8 )? with--together with. The "covenant" here is one of free grace, a promise afterwards carried into effect in the Gospel. (2) The law was temporary; being in effect only “till the seed” (Jesus), “should come.” (3) Unlike the covenant God gave directly to Abraham, the law … He speaks of these miracles as a matter of unquestioned notoriety among those addressed; an undesigned proof of their genuineness (compare 1 Corinthians 12:1-31 ). preached before the gospel--"announced beforehand the Gospel." 11. The Greek supports English Version. might be given--The emphasis is on "given": that it might be a free gift; not something earned by the works of the law ( Romans 6:23 ). c. Before w… REPROOF OF THE GALATIANS FOR ABANDONING FAITH FOR LEGALISM. 11. by the law--Greek, "IN the law." (1-5) This doctrine established from the example of Abraham. Much less would the righteous God do so. 7. they which are of faith--as the source and starting-point of their spiritual life. The argument is, By baptism ye have put on Christ; and therefore, He being the Son of God, ye become sons by adoption, by virtue of His Sonship by generation. iii. In the resurrection the relation of the sexes shall cease ( Luke 20:35 ). which should afterwards, &c.--"which was afterwards to be revealed.". addeth--None addeth new conditions "making" the covenant "of none effect" ( Galatians 3:17 ). Let us then study the object, nature, and effects of Abraham's faith; for who can in any other way escape the curse of the holy law? . The law did not teach a living, saving knowledge; but, by its rites and ceremonies, especially by its sacrifices, it pointed to Christ, that they might be justified by faith. God's providence ordered it so that to fulfil the prophecy of the curse and other prophecies, Jesus should be crucified, and so hang on the tree, though that death was not a Jewish mode of execution. Click here Sign in. The moral law shows us what we ought to do, and so we learn our inability to do it. The laws teach God’s holy standards to people. Paul ( Romans 3:30 ) infers the same truth from the ONENESS of God (compare Ephesians 4:4-6 ). you--emphatical. 2 This only would I learn … (Galatians 3:2-1) Show answer 11. Having begun in the Spirit. God makes a covenant, but it is one of promise; whereas the law is a covenant of works. If that promise was enough for salvation, wherefore then serveth the law? 2. in the Spirit--Not merely was Christ crucified "graphically set forth" in my preaching, but also "the Spirit" confirmed the word preached, by imparting His spiritual gifts. Their minds are too accommodating to wrong, unbiblical ideas, and they dont think things through to see if they really are true or not according to the Bible. 29. and heirs--The oldest manuscripts omit "and." But no outward forms or profession can secure these blessings; for if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. Both in and by are included. Also the contrast is between "live by faith" (namely, as the ground and source of his justification), and "live in them," namely, in his doings or works ( Galatians 3:12 ), as the conditional element wherein he is justified. CONTINUAL obedience by the word, "continueth." It omits the two clauses ‘that ye should not obey the truth’ and ‘among you.’ The omission increases … Galatians 3:10-12 is the bad news; now Paul begins to explain the good news. He reserved "the promise" to Himself and dispensed it according to His own goodness. The Law of God is perfect but the penalty for breaking any part of God's law, however insignificant in our own eyes is death - eternal separation from God. Several things made the folly of the Galatian Christians worse. hearing of faith--Faith consists not in working, but in receiving ( Romans 10:16 Romans 10:17 ). The city of God in heaven, is the portion or child's part. Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law; being made sin, or a sin-offering, for us, he was made a curse for us; not separated from God, but laid for a time under the Divine punishment. A mediator, as the very term signifies, is a friend that comes between two parties, and is not to act merely with and for one of them. Galatians 2: Galatians: Galatians 4. of God--"ratified by God" ( Galatians 3:15 ). Compare the phrase, Psalms 78:50 , Margin; Psalms 31:8 . (Gal 3:13-14) Jesus redeems us from the curse of the law. I speak after the manner of men--I take an illustration from a merely human transaction of everyday occurrence. Galatians 3:1 The Revised Version gives a shorter, and probably correct, form of this vehement question. 12. doeth--Many depended on the law although they did not keep it; but without doing, saith Paul, it is of no use to them ( Romans 2:13 Romans 2:17 Romans 2:23 , 10:5 ). Have ye suffered so many things--namely, persecution from Jews and from unbelieving fellow countrymen, incited by the Jews, at the time of your conversion. Beautifully contrasted with "the liberty wherewith Christ makes free," which follows, Galatians 3:7 Galatians 3:9 Galatians 3:25 Galatians 3:26 , 5:1 , Isaiah 61:1 . 3 Galatians 3 We become right with God when we trust Jesus 1 You Christians in Galatia are like fools! He broke loose, dashing toward the wrong end zone. Those only are just or righteous who are freed from death and wrath, and restored into a state of life in the favour of God; and it is only through faith that persons become righteous. 4. The meaning can hardly be "to check transgressions," for the law rather stimulates the corrupt heart to disobey it ( Romans 5:20 , 7:13 ). come--(Compare "faith came," Galatians 3:23 ). But some people have softer heads than hearts. The questions cut like a knife... View the entire commentary. So legal Judaism could make no alteration in the fundamental relation between God and man, already established by the promises to Abraham; it could not add as a new condition the observance of the law, in which case the fulfilment of the promise would be attached to a condition impossible for man to perform. No doubt the Galatians thought that they were going more deeply into the Spirit; for the flesh may be easily mistaken for the Spirit, even by those who have made progress, unless they continue to maintain a pure faith [BENGEL]. Therefore "in," or "by the law, no man is justified before God" (whatever the case may be before men, Romans 4:2 )--not even if he could, which he cannot, keep the law, because the Scripture element and conditional mean of justification is faith. See Note there. whether among those who preach justification by the works of the law, or those who preach the doctrine of faith? under sin--( Romans 3:9 Romans 3:19 , 11:32 ). 3. begun--the Christian life ( Philippians 1:6 ). Before your very eyes Jesus Christ was clearly … This is a sign of spiritual immaturity, even as a baby will stick anything into its mouth. And our special care must be for heaven; the things of this life are but trifles. Hence the phrase often recurs, "By the hand of Moses." Not merely accursed (in the concrete), but a curse in the abstract, bearing the universal curse of the whole human race. The ransom price He paid was His own precious blood ( 1 Peter 1:18 1 Peter 1:19 ; compare Matthew 20:28 , Acts 20:28 , 1 Corinthians 6:20 , 7:23 , 1 Timothy 2:6 , 2 Peter 2:1 , Revelation 5:9 ). Before your very eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed as crucified. 9. they--and they alone. Compare Romans 2:28 , Philippians 3:3 , Hebrews 9:10 . Was it not by their hearing and embracing the doctrine of faith in Christ alone for justification? In the ceremonial law we seek, by animal sacrifices, to answer for our not having done it, but find dead victims no satisfaction for the sins of living men, and that outward purifying will not cleanse the soul; and that therefore we need an infinitely better Sacrifice, the antitype of all the legal sacrifices. Even His mediatorial office is to cease when its purpose of reconciling all things to God shall have been accomplished ( 1 Corinthians 15:24 ); and God's ONENESS ( Zechariah 14:9 ), as "all in all," shall be fully manifested. One single faultless grain of human nature was found by God Himself, the source of a new and imperishable seed: "the seed" ( Psalms 22:30 ) who receive from Him a new nature and name ( Genesis 3:15 , Isaiah 53:10 Isaiah 53:11 , John 12:24 ). Galatians 3:3 In contexts like this, the Greek word for flesh (sarx) refers to the sinful state of human beings, often presented as a power in opposition to the Spirit. But the law does not pretend to give life, and therefore not righteousness; so there is no opposition between the law and the promise. Abrupt exclamation, as he breaks away impatiently from those who would involve us again in the curse of the law, by seeking justification in it, to "Christ," who "has redeemed us from its curse." might be--rather, "that we may be justified by faith"; which we could not be till Christ, the object of faith, had come. Seek to be sure of that above all things. continued . The same phrase is in … For Jesus is not a mediator separating the two parties in the covenant of promise or grace, as Moses did, but ONE in both nature and office with both God and man (compare "God in Christ," Galatians 3:17 ):representing the whole universal manhood ( 1 Corinthians 15:22 1 Corinthians 15:45 1 Corinthians 15:47 ), and also bearing in Him "all the fulness of the Godhead." 23. faith--namely, that just mentioned ( Galatians 3:22 ), of which Christ is the object. They had the doctrine of the cross preached, and the Lord's supper administered among them, in both which Christ crucified, and the nature of his sufferings, had been fully and clearly set forth. In thee--not "in thy seed," which is a point not here raised; but strictly "in thee," as followers of thy faith, it having first shown the way to justification before God [ALFORD]; or "in thee," as Father of the promised seed, namely, Christ ( Galatians 3:16 ), who is the Object of faith ( Genesis 22:18 , Psalms 72:17 ), and imitating thy faith all nations--or as above, "all the Gentiles" ( Genesis 12:3 , 18:18 , 22:18 ). that ministereth--or "supplieth," God ( 2 Corinthians 9:10 ). Therefore he says, "the Scripture," not the "Law." "THE EPISTLE TO THE GALATIANS" Chapter Three OBJECTIVES IN STUDYING THIS CHAPTER 1) To perceive how we are clearly justified by faith in Christ, and not by the works of the Law 2) To understand why the Law was given, what purpose it served, and how long it was to last 3… When the promise is mingled with the law, it is made nothing but the law. This verse is parenthetical. JUSTIFICATION BY FAITH VINDICATED: THE LAW SHOWN TO BE SUBSEQUENT TO THE PROMISE: BELIEVERS ARE THE SPIRITUAL SEED OF ABRAHAM, WHO WAS JUSTIFIED BY FAITH. But one new "seed" of a righteous succession could be found. The Scripture is said to foresee, because the Holy Spirit that indited the Scripture did foresee. At Beer-sheba, after the covenant with Abimelech, Abraham called on the everlasting God, and the well was confirmed to him and his seed as an everlasting possession. How many nations were eligible to receive the blessing given to Abraham because of his faith? The Galatian … 1 You foolish Galatians! But the awakened sinner discovers his dreadful condition. He . In the giving of the law, the "angels" were representatives of God; Moses, as mediator, represented the people. This is all the churches in southern Galatia. The Jews began their worship by reciting the Schemah, opening thus, "Jehovah our God is ONE Jehovah"; which words their Rabbis (as JARCHIUS) interpret as teaching not only the unity of God, but the future universality of His Kingdom on earth ( Zephaniah 3:9 ). one--Greek, "one man"; masculine, not neuter, namely "one new man" in Christ ( Ephesians 2:15 ). 188.8.131.52.15. doeth he it by the works of the law--that is, as a consequence resulting from (so the Greek) the works of the law (compare Galatians 3:2 ). —See the Note on Galatians 3:1. It is now, and at all times, God's one way of justification. Though deliverance is not to be expected from the law, there is a way open to escape the curse, and regain the favour of God, namely, through faith in Christ. bond nor free--Christ alike belongs to both by faith; whence he puts "bond" before "free." THE LAW WAS OUR SCHOOLMASTER TO BRING US TO CHRIST, THAT WE MIGHT BECOME CHILDREN OF GOD BY FAITH. The conclusion is, Therefore the inheritance is not of, or from the law ( Romans 4:14 ). The curse of its non-fulfilment affects the Gentiles through the Jews; for the law represents that righteousness which God requires of all, and which, since the Jews failed to fulfil, the Gentiles are equally unable to fulfil. Being baptized into Christ, we are baptized into his death, that as he died and rose again, so we should die unto sin, and walk in newness and holiness of life. So to those who follow Abraham, the father of the faithful, the blessing, that is, justification, comes purely by faith in Him who is the subject of the promise. Galatians 3:1-29 . We may boldly demand where the fruits of the Holy Spirit are most evidently brought forth? It was not by the first, but the last. 26. children--Greek, "sons." "So that the law hath been (that is, hath turned out to be) our schoolmaster (or "tutor," literally, "pedagogue": this term, among the Greeks, meant a faithful servant entrusted with the care of the boy from childhood to puberty, to keep him from evil, physical and moral, and accompany him to his amusements and studies) to guide us unto Christ," with whom we are no longer "shut up" in bondage, but are freemen. This he does from the example of … Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, having … that we might receive the promise of the Spirit--the promised Spirit ( Joel 2:28 Joel 2:29 , Luke 24:49 ). Most men continue shut up as in a dark dungeon, in love with their sins, being blinded and lulled asleep by Satan, through wordly pleasures, interests, and pursuits. Verse 10 In this verse, Paul was referring to the false teachers. 8. And thus it was, as the word properly signifies, a servant, to lead to Christ, as children are led to school by servants who have the care of them, that they might be more fully taught by Him the true way of justification and salvation, which is only by faith in Christ. For the "promise" was substantially the Gospel by anticipation. This accords with Galatians 3:23 Galatians 3:24 , Romans 4:15 . Christ not having come when the law was given, the covenant could not have been then fulfilled, but awaited the coming of Him, the Seed, to whom it was spoken. The covenant God made with Abraham, was not done away by the giving the law to Moses. The law was a preparatory dispensation for the Jewish nation ( Romans 5:20 ; Greek, "the law came in additionally and incidentally"), intervening between the promise and its fulfilment in Christ. children--Greek, "sons" ( Galatians 3:29 ). "You, before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been graphically set forth (literally, in writing, namely, by vivid portraiture in preaching) among you, crucified" (so the sense and Greek order require rather than English Version). Christ--not in the exclusive sense, the man Christ Jesus, but "Christ" (Jesus is not added, which would limit the meaning), including His people who are part of Himself, the Second Adam, and Head of redeemed humanity. Here God appeared to Isaac. Galatians 3:28 Galatians 3:29 prove this, "Ye are all ONE in Christ Jesus" (Jesus is added here as the person is indicated). Compare Isaiah 24:22 , "As prisoners gathered in the pit and shut up in the prison." 3 Are you so foolish? concluded--"shut up," under condemnation, as in a prison. It was to Christ in him, as in his grandfather Abraham, and his father Isaac, not to him or them as persons, the promise was spoken. I hope better things of you, for I trust you will return from legalism to grace; if so, as I confidently expect, you will not have "suffered so many things in vain" [ESTIUS]. [CALVIN]. 17. this I say--"this is what I mean," by what I said in Galatians 3:15 . yet--rather, "If it be really (or 'indeed') in vain" [ELLICOTT]. ordained--Greek, "constituted" or "disposed." But it is not restricted solely to the Jews, as ALFORD thinks; for these are the representative people of the world at large, and their "law" is the embodiment of what God requires of the whole world. , infants ) need such tutoring ( Galatians 3:18 ) 20:35 ) -- none addeth new conditions `` ''... As something extraneous, afterwards introduced, exceptional and temporary ( Galatians 3… Galatians 3:13 ( NASB ) Verse.. Recurs, `` I stood between the promises of the flesh none addeth new conditions `` making '' covenant... Referred toDeuteronomy 27: … 1 you foolish Galatians is what I said in 3:15... 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