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How Victory Is Won

from Google Images

from Google Images

The New Testament uses the word nikao (G3528) and its derivatives, nike (G3529) and nikos (G3534) in order to show us how we gain victory in our walk with Christ. We overcome (nikao) the world through the blood of Christ (Revelation 12:11), because Christ has overcome the world, and has given us the victory through his death and resurrection. Moreover, although our victory is a gift (1Corinthians 15:57 – nikos), we come to it after many struggles, but we overcome them, because greater is he who is in us than he who is in the world (1John 4:4; Luke 11:22). Victory over the world is attained as we place our trust in Christ (1John 5:4-5 – nike). Finally, victory comes to us wholly when our mortality is swallowed up by eternal life (1Corinthians 15:54 – nikos), which is attained at our death (2Corinthians 5:1-4) or when Christ returns (1Corinthians 15:51-53). Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on May 14, 2015 in Epistle to the Galatians, Paul

 

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The Battle for the Good News

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from Google Images

The question at this point is: why is circumcision (or anything we do) unable to make us right with God (Galatians 5:6; cp. 3:10, 21)? Just as the wages we earn have nothing to do with being a gift we receive, so circumcision or anything we do can have nothing to do with making us right before God, because righteousness is imputed (i.e. it is a gift), and what we do looks for a wage (reward for services rendered). It is Christ who makes us righteous (through grace, a gift), and we can only trust it is so, just as we trust that any gift we receive is entirely a gift—no strings attached. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on May 5, 2015 in Epistle to the Galatians, Paul

 

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Standing Fast in Liberty

Yoke

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At this time Paul takes us from theology to ethics, from dogma to living out one’s faith. What would our being devoted to God, yet living without the Mosaic Law, look like? If the Mosaic Law is discarded as a premise for Christian conduct, what would happen to moral living? This was the problem that the New Testament Church had to answer, because it was, no doubt, put to us by both the legalists who opposed the believer’s posture, and the legalists who were genuinely interested in the answer. If law takes away real freedom, how does one keep from embracing the opposite extreme of living so freely that one becomes addicted to lust, greed, wrath and the like? Obviously, such behavior also takes away true freedom. The answer to this dilemma lies in maintaining the image of Christ within us, which is kept through faith as we shall see. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on April 30, 2015 in Epistle to the Galatians, Paul

 

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Paul’s Argument of Maturity

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from Google Images

In Galatians 3:25-29 Paul argues that, as the mature sons of God, we are no longer under our childhood guardian or schoolmaster. After faith has come—that is, after our salvation appears or after Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection (the object of our faith)—after this appears, we are no longer under the custodian, which Paul explains is the Law (Galatians 3:25). Rather we are under Jesus in whom we trust. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on April 16, 2015 in Epistle to the Galatians, Paul

 

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Paul’s Third Argument with Peter

from Google Images

from Google Images

One of the biggest problems of the first century Church was, and it still is today, understanding how we become righteous before God. How is a just God able to justify sinners? In our world those who break the law must be punished in accordance with that law. Some are punished with their lives, while others receive community service for minor infractions, but most receive a jail sentence for greater crimes against society. Often, after they have paid their debt to society, former criminals are not trusted by those among us who have never committed a crime. Yet, we are told that all men, no matter how grave the sin or crime, can be forgiven and justified by God. What would such a thing look like? Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 29, 2015 in Epistle to the Galatians, Paul

 

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Paul v/s the Apostles in Jerusalem

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from Google Images

According to Paul (Galatians 1:18), who is supported by Luke’s account in Acts 9, Paul was preaching Christ in Damascus and vicinity for a full three years before he ever met with any of the Apostles at Jerusalem! The indications are that Paul wasn’t silent during those three years after his heavenly vision, but began to obey the Lord by preaching the Gospel to those in Damascus and in Arabia (Acts 26:16, 19). If Paul learned the Gospel of Jesus’ death and resurrection—that is, that Jesus was the Son of God—by revelation (via his vision on the Damascus Road), this means that his excursions into Arabia imply that he preached the Gospel there among the Ishmaelite people. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 15, 2015 in Epistle to the Galatians, Paul

 

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Paul’s Gospel

from Google Images

from Google Images

A few years ago I published my understanding of Paul’s Gospel, while I was going through the Book of Acts for the second time: What Was Paul’s Gospel? In this blog-post I wish to offer the same point of view from a different perspective. In the first chapter of Galatians Paul offers a glimpse of the Gospel he preached to the gentiles. Although it was somewhat different from that preached by the Twelve, in essence it was the very same Gospel preached at Jerusalem. Notice that in Galatians 1:4 Paul says that he preached that Christ gave himself for our sins in order that we might be delivered from this world. In a nutshell, this is the Gospel, and, as I hope to show here, it was the Gospel preached in Jerusalem, minus the Jewish traditions that the Apostles preached Jews should obey, just as Paul preached gentiles should obey the authorities who governed them. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 3, 2015 in Epistle to the Galatians, Paul

 

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