Galatians Chapter 2
Viewing the Standard King James Version (Pure Cambridge). Click to switch to 1611 King James Version of Galatians Chapter 2
2 And I went up by revelation, and communicated unto them that gospel which I preach among the Gentiles, but privately to them which were of reputation, lest by any means I should run, or had run, in vain.
9 And when James, Cephas, and John, who seemed to be pillars, perceived the grace that was given unto me, they gave to me and Barnabas the right hands of fellowship; that we should go unto the heathen, and they unto the circumcision.
14 But when I saw that they walked not uprightly according to the truth of the gospel, I said unto Peter before them all, If thou, being a Jew, livest after the manner of Gentiles, and not as do the Jews, why compellest thou the Gentiles to live as do the Jews?
16 Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.
20 I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.
|<< Galatians Chapter 1||
Share Galatians Chapter 2:
Matthew Henry's Galatians Chapter 2 Bible commentary...
The apostle declares his being owned as an apostle of the Gentiles. (1-10) He had publicly opposed Peter for judaizing. (11-14) And from thence he enters upon the doctrine of justification by faith in Christ, without the works of the law. (15-21)1-10 Observe the apostle's faithfulness in giving a full account of the doctrine he had preached among the Gentiles, and was still resolved to preach, that of Christianity, free from all mixture of Judaism. This doctrine would be ungrateful to many, yet he was not afraid to own it. His care was, lest the success of his past labours should be lessened, or his future usefulness be hindered. While we simply depend upon God for success to our labours, we should use every proper caution to remove mistakes, and against opposers. There are things which may lawfully be complied with, yet, when they cannot be done without betraying the truth, they ought to be refused. We must not give place to any conduct, whereby the truth of the gospel would be reflected upon. Though Paul conversed with the other apostles, yet he did not receive any addition to his knowledge, or authority, from them. Perceiving the grace given to him, they gave unto him and Barnabas the right hand of fellowship, whereby they acknowledged that he was designed to the honour and office of an apostle as well as themselves. They agreed that these two should go to the heathen, while they continued to preach to the Jews; judging it agreeable to the mind of Christ, so to divide their work. Here we learn that the gospel is not ours, but God's; and that men are but the keepers of it; for this we are to praise God. The apostle showed his charitable disposition, and how ready he was to own the Jewish converts as brethren, though many would scarcely allow the like favour to the converted Gentiles; but mere difference of opinion was no reason to him why he should not help them. Herein is a pattern of Christian charity, which we should extend to all the disciples of Christ.
11-14 Notwithstanding Peter's character, yet, when Paul saw him acting so as to hurt the truth of the gospel and the peace of the church, he was not afraid to reprove him. When he saw that Peter and the others did not live up to that principle which the gospel taught, and which they professed, namely, That by the death of Christ the partition wall between Jew and Gentile was taken down, and the observance of the law of Moses was no longer in force; as Peter's offence was public, he publicly reproved him. There is a very great difference between the prudence of St. Paul, who bore with, and used for a time, the ceremonies of the law as not sinful, and the timid conduct of St. Peter, who, by withdrawing from the Gentiles, led others to think that these ceremonies were necessary.
15-19 Paul, having thus shown he was not inferior to any apostle, not to Peter himself, speaks of the great foundation doctrine of the gospel. For what did we believe in Christ? Was it not that we might be justified by the faith of Christ? If so, is it not foolish to go back to the law, and to expect to be justified by the merit of moral works, or sacrifices, or ceremonies? The occasion of this declaration doubtless arose from the ceremonial law; but the argument is quite as strong against all dependence upon the works of the moral law, as respects justification. To give the greater weight to this, it is added, But if, while we seek to be justified by Christ, we ourselves also are found sinners, is Christ the minister of sin? This would be very dishonourable to Christ, and also very hurtful to them. By considering the law itself, he saw that justification was not to be expected by the works of it, and that there was now no further need of the sacrifices and cleansings of it, since they were done away in Christ, by his offering up himself a sacrifice for us. He did not hope or fear any thing from it; any more than a dead man from enemies. But the effect was not a careless, lawless life. It was necessary, that he might live to God, and be devoted to him through the motives and grace of the gospel. It is no new prejudice, though a most unjust one, that the doctrine of justification by faith alone, tends to encourage people in sin. Not so, for to take occasion from free grace, or the doctrine of it, to live in sin, is to try to make Christ the minister of sin, at any thought of which all Christian hearts would shudder.
20,21 Here, in his own person, the apostle describes the spiritual or hidden life of a believer. The old man is crucified, #Ro 6:6|, but the new man is living; sin is mortified, and grace is quickened. He has the comforts and the triumphs of grace; yet that grace is not from himself, but from another. Believers see themselves living in a state of dependence on Christ. Hence it is, that though he lives in the flesh, yet he does not live after the flesh. Those who have true faith, live by that faith; and faith fastens upon Christ's giving himself for us. He loved me, and gave himself for me. As if the apostle said, The Lord saw me fleeing from him more and more. Such wickedness, error, and ignorance were in my will and understanding, that it was not possible for me to be ransomed by any other means than by such a price. Consider well this price. Here notice the false faith of many. And their profession is accordingly; they have the form of godliness without the power of it. They think they believe the articles of faith aright, but they are deceived. For to believe in Christ crucified, is not only to believe that he was crucified, but also to believe that I am crucified with him. And this is to know Christ crucified. Hence we learn what is the nature of grace. God's grace cannot stand with man's merit. Grace is no grace unless it is freely given every way. The more simply the believer relies on Christ for every thing, the more devotedly does he walk before Him in all his ordinances and commandments. Christ lives and reigns in him, and he lives here on earth by faith in the Son of God, which works by love, causes obedience, and changes into his holy image. Thus he neither abuses the grace of God, nor makes it in vain.
Daniel Campbell's Galatians Chapter 2 comment on 6/11/2013, 11:40pm...
We must be careful and let the Bible interpet itself Paul stated that the law is the knowlegde of sin Rom 3:20 and also in verse 31 he said establish the law. the bibles difinition for sin according to 1John 3:4 is that sin is the transgession of the law Yahsuah came to redeem humankind back to the Father Yahsuah himself said to gain enternal life you must keep the commandments Matt 19:16-17 understand we are saved by grace and not by works read the text this whole subject matter is regarding cir***cision the works of the law that Paul is refering to his the acts of the cutting of the foreflesh which was a ordinance that was nailed to the tree so that the gentiles could become fellow citizen concerning the promises of Abraham this text has nothing to do with abolishing the law the Messiah came to fufill the law not to destroy the law or the prophets Matt 5:17 his blood fufilled the works of the law as far as blood of animals and he fufilled any works of the law as for as sacrifices were concerned and now the holy spirit helps us to obey Gods laws the blood covers ours past sins Rom 3:25 you are not under the penlenty of the law if you are not breaking it remember the wages of sin is death but the gift of God is eternal life through Yahsuah our sacrifice Rom 6:23
R. R.'s Galatians Chapter 2 comment on 4/03/2013, 9:38am...
@R. D. Mattock,
In the Old Testament we have the Covenant of Law. In the New Testament we have the Covenant of Grace. The Covenant of Grace is far better than the Law. Some hearing this may be thinking, you’re teaching that we Christians are not supposed to keep the Law. We are not under the Law, but yes we do keep it. As a Christians, I don’t break the Law. I walk after the Spirit and according to Paul, those who walk after the Spirit fulfil the Law (Romans 8:1). If you think the 10 Commandments are so important, name them. We usually can’t, we might get a few, but very seldom all of them, and almost never in order. The Ten Commandments are not all of the Jewish law. There are 615 separate commandments contained in those five books. To keep 614 of those is not enough. So anyone who thinks he can attain righteousness by keeping the Law has his work cut out for him. Get to work and start memorizing all 615. I'll stay with what John says, if we walk in the light as he is the light the blood of Jesus Christ cleanses us from all sin. I came out of one of those churches where men sit on one side of the church and the women sat on the other side. Could not ware make up, had to cover your head, and the Pastor decide who you could or could not marry. No I choose Grace, if it be of grace, it cannot be of works, if it be of works it cannot be of grace.
Bro. Daniel FC's Galatians Chapter 2 comment on 3/25/2013, 7:16am...
On verse 16, It breaks my heart when I hear people repeat like “broken records”, texts or ideas from the Bible without making the slightest effort to understand what the author is saying. The myopic approach to certain issues of the Holy Writ is dangerous and can lead to destruction. Now, I realize that most of them are sincere and they mean well; however they are still mislead. Here is the case in point: In the letter (all six chapters = one letter) to the churches in Galatia, Apostle Paul is dealing with the controversial issue of circumcision. Methodically, he is explaining to the new believers why they don’t need to be circumcised in order to be saved. In verse 16 he declares: “KNOWING THAT A MAN IS NOT JUSTIFIED BY THE WORKS OF THE LAW, BUT BY THE FAITH OF JESUS CHRIST, EVEN WE HAVE BELIEVED IN JESUS CHRIST, THAT WE MIGHT BE JUSTIFIED BY THE FAITH OF CHRIST, AND NOT BY THE WORKS OF THE LAW: FOR BY THE WORKS OF THE LAW SHALL NO FLESH BE JUSTIFIED.” This is a true and very important statement: Salvation is God’s gift to anyone who accepts it. It is free and based on Christ’s sacrifice and merits only. So, what does that statement mean? First, it means that no matter how strict or faithful toward keeping any law, IT WILL NOT get you into the Kingdom of God. Secondly, within the context of Paul’s letter, it means that circumcision (in the flesh), which was part of the “Ceremonial Law” (fulfilled by Christ, and no longer required to be observed), is not a prerequisite to be saved, nor to become part of “the chosen people” or spiritual Israel. Galatians 3, states: “26 For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. 27 For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 AND IF YE BE CHRIST'S, THEN ARE YE ABRAHAM'S SEED, AND HEIRS ACCORDING TO THE PROMISE.” Thirdly, and just as important, that statement does not give us a free pass to sin, just because Christ died, and we are under GRACE. In other words: We have no right to trample the Moral Law or “the Ten Commandments” under our feet, under the pretext that we don’t want to be “under the curse of the Law”. Most Christians have no problem admitting that keeping at least nine of the Ten, it is OK… So they say: “not stealing from me it’s desirable, you should keep that commandment; and no, I wouldn’t want you to fool-around with my wife: that seventh commandment it’s very important!” Or, “Do you want to kill me? Oh no, that’s breaking the sixth one: don’t even think of that!” And so on, with commandment number 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 and 10. So far you are safe: if you keep just those nine you are not under “the curse of the Law”! But the moment you mention the fourth commandment they cry: “LEGALISM”, down with that Jewish Sabbath! You are under the curse… So they take away the only commandment that says “Remember the Sabbath Day to keep it holy” and tell everyone to “Forget it!” or they say: “Oh no, we keep Sunday (the Day of the Sun) instead!” So, why do we need to keep the Ten Commandments? No, we don’t keep them in order to be saved, but rather, because we are saved. We do it out of respect for God, not to score “salvation points”. And every time we break one of them, we repent and ask God’s forgiveness, and, as Jesus bids us, we “go and sin no more”. But even if we do, as often as it happens, we go again through the same exercise: repent and ask God’s forgiveness “until seventy times seven” if needed (Matthew 18:22), and “…He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” 1 John 1:9, until we are victorious over that sin. THIS IS GRACE: No condemnation (as the Law requires) but unmerited forgiveness! The Law is not abolished, but it facilitates GRACE. And so, we grow and mature as followers of Christ. But, if there is no Law, then there is no need for forgiveness, no need for repentance, no need for grace, and ultimately no need of Christ… Suppose now, just suppose that Apostle Paul is teaching here that we don’t need to keep The Commandments, any of them: Would you listen to him or to Jesus?! Here is what Jesus, our Savior is asking you and me: “IF YE LOVE ME, KEEP MY COMMANDMENTS”, John 14:15. But no, Apostle Paul would not dare to contradict his Savior and Master… as he had in the past. Not convinced yet? Here is another message from Jesus: “Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called THE LEAST in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called GREAT in the kingdom of heaven” Matthew 5:19. Yes, they’ll be called “the least” but they won’t be found within. Choose eternal life today: and be called GREAT in the kingdom of heaven!
R. D. Mattock's Galatians Chapter 2 comment on 3/23/2013, 8:45pm...
Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified. By Grace we are saved, through faith, NOT OF WORKS least any man boast. There are churches out there that will try to put you back under the law. Legalism. Leave them. The law was our school master, in that it pointed to Christ that we might be justified by faith. Man realizing that he was unable to keep the law needs a savior. It is amazing grace, saving grace, how sweet the sound that saved a wrench like me. How come if works cannot save us, do we let bad works unsave us?
Bro. Daniel FC's Galatians Chapter 2 comment on 3/23/2013, 6:55am...
I feel that the Apostle Peter is getting a bad rap; and that’s not fair! While I appreciate Paul and his writings and recognize him as a great teacher and prophet, I cannot help but notice that even after his conversion, God “was not finished” with him. He appears to be both, boastful (in chapter 1), and angry. Maybe, that’s what they call “righteous indignation”? The transition from Old Testament to New Testament after Christ’s ascension was a work in progress: it did not happen overnight, but lasted quite a few years. As the Holy Spirit instructed the apostles, they, in turn presented the revelations to the believers, either orally or in the written form, “growing in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” (2 Peter 3:18). Not all apostles were “enlightened” of the same subject, or at the same time. So, we have “gaps” in time and teachings. And in the case of “circumcision” issue, (which Paul is dealing with in Galatians), the apostles had to have a “congress” at Jerusalem in order to decide what to do, as shows Acts 15. Even Paul’s speech was a work in progress… The language used in Galatians 1:8 “But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that, which we have preached unto you, LET HIM BE ACCURSED,” and Galatians 2:12 “I would they were EVEN CUT OFF which trouble you”, leaves something to be desired. Jesus says in Luke 6: “Love your enemies, do good to them which hate you”, verse 28 “BLESS THEM THAT CURSE YOU, and pray for them which despitefully use you”. Even Apostle Paul agrees with that in Romans 12:14: “Bless them which persecute you: bless, and CURSE NOT.” His statements about “James, Cephas (Peter), and John, WHO SEEMED to be pillars” in the church (Galatians 2:9), borders on arrogance. I feel like telling him: “Paul, get a life; THEY WERE THE PILLARS OF THE CHURCH while you were persecuting it!” True, they were simple fishermen, not trained at the feet of Gamaliel like you, but they had spent three and a half years at the feet of Jesus: The Greatest Teacher of all times. And, not only that, on the Day of Pentecost they received the power of the Holy Spirit: to preach, to teach and heal. Yes, Paul was a great apostle, but Apostle John was a giant: he was not only trained by Jesus and wrote the Gospel and the Epistles that bear his name, but he received countless visions from Him and wrote the Book of Revelation. And Apostle Peter, he was entrusted with “taking care of His sheep” by Jesus Himself. Also, Paul’s boldness expressed towards Apostle Peter, was uncalled for: “But when Peter was come to Antioch, I withstood him to the face, because he was to be blamed” (Galatians 2:11). Basically he was blaming Peter for the troubles in Galatia. Too bad Peter had no chance to defend himself. I’m wondering how much did Paul’s criticism of Peter, help those churches… But what really takes the cake, is his advice (good advice though) in Galatians 5:13 “For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another. 14 For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; ‘Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.’ 15 But IF YE BITE AND DEVOUR ONE ANOTHER, take heed that ye are not consumed one of another.” Sometimes it’s good to take seriously our own advice...
Promise evbosaru's Galatians Chapter 2 comment about verse 20 on 2/23/2013, 8:14am...
I thank Jesus for this life that I live now, I live by faith in the son of God, who loved me and gave his life for me.
Evalena Latham's Galatians Chapter 2 comment on 2/05/2013, 1:38pm...
To Terry: All is needed is faith in Jesus Christ. As you read and meditate upon his word daily, He will produce the work in you by His Holy Spirit. Now rest in Him and watch Him work through you. He is the author and finisher of your faith. He gives you peace and the mind to follow and obey Him. Don't worry. All of His paths are peace. It is so sweet and easy when He does the work. It's a burden you try to do it. God bless you. Enjoy your walk with the Lord as you live by Him.
What Do You Think of Galatians 2?
Share your own thoughts or commentary here...
Test Your Knowledge of Galatians Chapter 2
|<< Galatians Chapter 1|