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The Epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Galatians - Term Paper Example

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In the essay “The Epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Galatians” the author discusses the letter of Paul to the Galatians about reinforcing the faith of the Galatians to Christianism and Jesus Christ himself. The epistle was written during the 40s and the 50s…
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The Epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Galatians
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The Epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Galatians
The letter of Paul to the Galatians is about reinforcing the faith of the Galatians to Christianism and Jesus Christ himself.
The epistle was written during the 40s and the 50s, when the Galatians were recently converted from being pagans to Christians. Because of this the other missionaries who were most probably recently converted Jews (Judaizers, they were called) saw the weaknesses in the faith of the newly converted people. They were telling the neophytes that they would not reach salvation if they would not follow certain laws, specifically laws that have Jewish inclinations, which includes the rite of circumcision, among others. These neophyte Christians became so confused that they were at risk of losing their faith on Jesus Christ.
The other missionaries vehemently insisted that the neophytes carry on their belief of Jesus Christ along with following certain aspects of the Mosaic Law. They were also undermining Paul’s authority because, according to them, Paul is not trained by Jesus himself, and therefore not a true and original apostle. They were also telling the neophyte Christians that Paul lied to them, the Galatians, about the necessity of accepting certain Jewish practices like circumcision just so he could easily win their faith to Jesus Christ (Gal 2:2).
When Paul knew of the situation, he defended his own authority and religion and in his being an apostle. He clarified the correct understanding of faith through this letter. He pointed out the importance of Jesus Christ’s sacrifice on the cross as a means of redemption for all those who believed in him; the freedom of the Christians from the burdens of the law (like circumcision, among others); the way the Christians’ faith in Christ would provide them the way to God and eternal life. Paul also illustrated the beauty of life with the Spirit.
We see two issues here. First, Paul is being accused of being a farce and consequently, his teachings too. In Galatians 1:11, we see that Paul defends his apostolic ministry and power. He wrote his letter telling everyone that he is a true servant of Jesus, telling everyone that the gospel he preaches are not made by men, not received of men and not taught to him by men, but rather was revealed to him by Jesus Christ (Gal 1:11-12). He then, continued his experience of being an apostle, telling stories of his experiences of being an apostle. He also explained that the gospel he preached was endorsed by the reputable apostles in Jerusalem (Gal 2:1-10).
To settle the confusion of the Christian neophytes, Paul defended the gospel by having only grace and faith (Gal 3:1-4:31). He added that before faith (Christianity) came, they were kept under the law (Gal 3:23) and now that they (Christians) had been freed from that demands of the law to conduct various practices, ceremonies and rituals, why do they have to be subjected to these demands again (Gal 4:8-11)? Paul also pointed out that the children of promise, like Isaac who was born of the free woman Sarah was free, unlike Ishmael who was born of the slave woman Hagar.
This epistle points out the contrasts between two religions: Judaism and Christianity. Through this letter, the reader observes how the Jews sought divine approval: by following laws, rituals and moral standards. In Christianity, we see through Paul’s insight that the promise of faith is enough for a person to be truly able to experience complete spiritual freedom, as well as divine approval.
Paul’s action is agreeable. These neophytes are confused and as an apostle, it is his duty to conserve and protect his religious beliefs and followers. Also, the Judaizers are very malicious in their intent to confuse the neophyte Christians, even naming Paul a liar and a farce. This is a very deceitful move. Even if this is not an issue of religion, the mere fact that Paul defended his dignity and honor against the malicious Judaizers is reason enough for his reaction to be agreeable.
Works Cited:
The Holy Bible – King James Version. King James. Baltimore: Ottenheimer Publishers, 2007. Print. Read More
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