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Book of Galatians

Day 1

The letter to the Galatians was written by the Apostle Paul, likely around AD 49-50, to the churches in the region of Galatia, located in modern-day Turkey, where Paul had traveled. You can read about these stories in the Book of Acts. This letter seems to be written with deep passion and frustration. The primary purpose was to combat the influence of false teachers who were promoting a distorted version of the gospel among the Galatian believers.

Christianity began as a Jewish Messianic movement in Jerusalem, but its message was for all humanity, so it quickly spread from Israel. In Paul’s time as a missionary there were about as many non-Jews as there were Jewish people in the Jesus movement. Traditionally, the Jewish people from Israel were set apart by the practices commanded in the Torah (circumcision of males, eating Kosher, observing the Sabbath). Many Jewish Christians who believed for all of these non-Jew to truly be a believer they must obey the laws of the Torah.

Many of these Jewish Christians began undermining Paul and demanding circumcision of the non-Jewish followers. When Paul found out he was broken-hearted and angry. This letter was the result.

He summarizes the gospel of the crucified messiah (chapters 1 and 2), creates a new, multi-ethnic family (chapters 3 and 4), and then how this gospel transforms people by the presence of and power of the spirit.

Questions to ponder:

  • Consider Paul’s exhortation to love one another and bear one another’s burdens. How can you practically demonstrate love and support to fellow believers in your community?
  • Reflect on how the teachings of Galatians challenge you to live a life characterized by freedom, grace, and obedience to Christ. How can you apply these teachings to your daily walk with God?
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