RIGHTEOUSNESS BY FAITH



(GAL 2:14) 14 When I saw that they were not acting in line with the truth of the gospel, I said to Cephas in front of them all, “You are a Jew, yet you live like a Gentile and not like a Jew. How is it, then, that you force Gentiles to follow Jewish customs?


THE KEY ISSUES FOR THE CHURCH IN GALATIA WERE: HOW DO PEOPLE BECOME ACCEPTABLE TO GOD? WHAT DO PEOPLE NEED TO EARN GOD'S FAVOUR? HOW DO PEOPLE BECOME MEMBERS OF GOD'S FAMILY?

FOR PAUL, THE ANSWER WAS SIMPLE: THERE IS NOTHING PEOPLE CAN OR NEED TO DO. ONLY CHRIST COULD DO- AND HAS DONE - WHAT MUST BE DONE TO MAKE PEOPLE ACCEPTABLE TO GOD. SO WE SHOULD SIMPLY RECEIVE HIS GIFT, GRATEFULLY THANK HIM FOR WHAT HE HAS DONE FOR US, AND TRUST IN HIM.

FOR JEWISH CHRISTIANS IN THE FIRST CENTURY, IT WAS HARD TO ACCEPT THIS ANSWER. FROM THE TIME OF ABRAHAM, THEIR RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD HAD BEEN DEFINED BY CIRCUMCISION, THE RITE OF CUTTING OFF THE MALE FORESKIN (GEN 17:9-14). EVERY MALE WHO WAS PART OF GOD'S FAMILY HAD TO BE CIRCUMCISED AND THOSE WHO NEGLECTED IT WERE CUT OFF FROM GOD'S PEOPLE. THOSE WHO HAD RECEIVED CIRCUMCISION WERE ALSO EXPECTED TO KEEP THE LAWS REGARDING THE SABBATH AND WHAT FOODS COULD BE EATEN, ALONG THE REST OF THE LAW.

WHEN THE CHRISTIAN FAITH MOVED FROM THE JEWISH TI GENTILE WORLD, IT WAS NATURAL FOR QUESTIONS TO ARISE. DO CHRISTIANS NEED TO BE CIRCUMCISED- AND KEEP GOD'S LAW IN GENERAL - TO BE ACCEPTED AS PART OF GOD'S FAMILY? OR DOES GOD ACCEPT PEOPLE PURELY ON THE BASIS OF THEIR FAITH IN CHRIST'S WORK ON THE CROSS? AS PAUL MISSION TO GENTILES ADVANCED, THESE QUESTIONS BECAME PRESSING.

THE APOSTLE PETER UNDERSTOOD FROM HIS VISION IN JOPPA AND HIS EXPERIENCE IN CAESAREA THAT GOD HAD ACCEPTED GENTILES AS GENTILES, ON THE BASIS OF THEIR FAITH IN CHRIST'S FINISHED WORK (ACTS 10:9- 11:18). THEY DID NOT HAVE TO BECOME JEWISH BY OBSERVING CIRCUMCISION, FOR CHRIST PROVIDED THEM OPEN ACCESS TO GOD BY FAITH, PETER, AND THE JERUSALEM CHURCH THEREFORE WELCOMED GENTILE BELIEVERS INTO FELLOWSHIP. BUT LATER, PETER TEMPORARILY WITHDREW FROM FELLOWSHIP WITH GENTILES WHEN SOME JEWISH CHRISTIANS CRITICIZED HIM(GAL 2:11-13). IN RESPONSE PAUL REBUKED PETER FOR COMMUNICATING THAT GENTILES MUST BECOME JEWS IN ORDER TO BE ACCEPTED BY GOD (GAL 2:14-21).

NO ONE IS ACCEPTED BY GOD AND MADE RIGHTEOUS BEFORE HIM ON THE BASIS OF KEEPING THE LAW. EVEN ABRAHAM WAS ACCOUNTED AS RIGHTEOUS AND ACCEPTED BY GOD BECAUSE OF HIS FAITH- NOT BECAUSE HE WAS CIRCUMCISED, WHICH CAME LATER (GEN 17:9-14). BOTH JEWS AND GENTILES ARE ACCEPTED BY GOD AND MADE RIGHTEOUS BEFORE HIM ON THE BASIS OF FAITH ALONE.

0 views
ABOUT US
ADDRESS

+919888084087

 

73 maryroad 
Handsworth

Birmingham orj

 

praytopraise@gmail.com

SUBSCRIBE FOR EMAILS

© 2023 by praytopraise. Proudly created by Samuel Masih