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Word Pictures in the New Testament
(Galatians: Chapter 1)

1:1 {Not from men, neither through men} (\ouk ap' anthrōpōn oude
di' anthrōpou\)
. The bluntness of Paul's denial is due to the
charge made by the Judaizers that Paul was not a genuine apostle
because not one of the twelve. This charge had been made in
Corinth and called forth the keenest irony of Paul (2Co 10-12).
In Ga 1; 2 Paul proves his independence of the twelve and his
equality with them as recognized by them. Paul denies that his
apostleship had a human source (\ouk ap' anthrōpōn\) and that it
had come to him through (\di' anthrōpou\) a human channel
(Burton). {But through Jesus Christ and God the Father} (\alla
dia Iēsou Christou kai theou patros\)
. The call to be an apostle
came to Paul through Jesus Christ as he claimed in 1Co 9:1 and
as told in Ac 9:4-6; 22:7ff.; 26:16ff. He is apostle also by
the will of God. {Who raised him from the dead} (\tou egeirantos
auton ek nekrōn\)
. And therefore Paul was qualified to be an
apostle since he had seen the Risen Christ (1Co 9:1; 15:8f.).
This verb \egeirō\ is often used in N.T. for raising from the
sleep of death, to wake up the dead.

1:2 {All the brethren which are with me} (\hoi sun emoi pantes
. The same phrase in Php 4:21 in distinction from the
saints in verse 22. Probably the small company of travelling
companions. {Unto the churches of Galatia} (\tais ekklēsiais tēs
. A circular letter therefore to all the churches in
the province (both South Galatia and North Galatia if he really
laboured there)

1:3 {Grace to you and peace} (\charis humin kai eirēnē\). As in I
Thess., II Thess., I Cor., II Cor. (already written) and in all
the later Epistles save that in I and II Timothy "mercy" is
added. But this customary salutation (see on ¯1Th 1:1) is not a
perfunctory thing with Paul. He uses it here even when he has so
much fault to find just as he did in I and II Corinthians.

1:4 {For our sins} (\huper tōn hamartiōn\). Some MSS. have \peri\
(concerning). In the _Koinē_ this use of \huper\ as like \peri\
has come to be common. He refers to the death of Christ (cf. 1Co
15:3; Ga 2:20; Ro 5:6f.)
. As a rule \peri\ occurs of things,
\huper\ of persons. {Deliver} (\exelētai\). Second aorist middle
subjunctive (final clause with \hopōs\) of \exaireō\, old verb to
pluck out, to rescue (Ac 23:27). "Strikes the keynote of the
epistle. The gospel is a rescue, an emancipation from a state of
bondage" (Lightfoot). {Out of this present evil world} (\ek tou
aiōnos tou enestōtos ponērou\)
. Literally, "out of the age the
existing one being evil." The predicate position of \ponērou\
calls emphatic attention to it. Each word here is of interest and
has been already discussed. See on ¯Mt 13:22 for \aiōn\, Mt
6:23 for \ponēros\. \Enestōtos\ is genitive masculine singular
of \enestōs\ second perfect (intransitive) participle of
\enistēmi\ for which see on ¯2Th 2:12; 1Co 3:22; 7:26. It is
present as related to future (Ro 8:38; Heb 9:9). {According to
the will of God}
(\kata to thelēma tou theou\). Not according to
any merit in us.

1:5 {To whom be the glory} (\hōi hē doxa\). No verb in the Greek.
For like doxologies see Ro 9:5; 11:36; 16:27; Eph 3:21; 1Ti

1:6 {Ye are so quickly removing} (\houtōs tacheōs
. The present middle indicative of \metatithēmi\,
to change places, to transfer. "You are transferring yourselves"
and doing it "so quickly" either from the time of their
conversion or most likely from the time when the Judaizers came
and tempted them. So easily some of them are falling victims to
these perverters of the gospel. That is a continuous amazement
(\thaumazō\) to Paul and to men today that so many are so silly
and so gullible to modern as to ancient charlatans. {Unto a
different gospel}
(\eis heteron euaggelion\). See on ¯2Co 11:4
for distinction between \allo\ and \heteron\ as here. It is not
here or there a mere difference in emphasis or spirit as in ¯Php
1:18 so long as Christ is preached. These men as in 2Co 11:4
preach "another Jesus" and a "different gospel" and so have
fallen away from grace and have done away with Christ (Ga 5:4).
Hence the vehemence of Paul's words.

1:7 {Which is not another} (\ho ouk estin allo\). It is no
"gospel" (good news) at all, but a yoke of bondage to the law and
the abolition of grace. There is but one gospel and that is of
grace, not works. The relative \ho\ (which) refers to \heteron
euaggelion\ (a different gospel) "taken as a single term and
designating the erroneous teachings of the Judaizers" (Burton).
{Only} (\ei mē\). Literally, "except," that is, "Except in this
sense," "in that it is an attempt to pervert the one true gospel"
(Lightfoot). {Who disturb you} (\hoi tarassontes\). The
disturbers. This very verb \tarassō\ is used in Ac 17:8 of the
Jews in Thessalonica who "disturbed" the politarchs and the
people about Paul. {Would pervert} (\thelontes metastrepsai\).
"Wish to turn about," change completely as in Ac 2:20; Jas 4:9.
The very existence of the gospel of Christ was at stake.

1:8 {If we} (\ean hēmeis\). Condition of third class (\ean\ and
aorist middle subjunctive \euaggelisētai\)
. Suppose I (literary
should turn renegade and preach "other than" (\par' ho\),
"contrary to that which we preached." Preachers have turned away
from Christ, alas, and preached "humanism" or some other
new-fangled notion. The Jews termed Paul a renegade for leaving
Judaism for Christianity. But it was before Paul had seen Christ
that he clung to the law. Paul is dogmatic and positive here, for
he knows that he is standing upon solid ground, the fact of
Christ dying for us and rising again. He had seen the Risen Jesus
Christ. No angel can change Paul now. {Let him be anathema}
(\anathema estō\). See on ¯1Co 12:3 for this word.

1:9 {So say I now again} (\kai arti palin legō\). Paul knows that
he has just made what some will consider an extreme statement.
But it is a deliberate one and not mere excitement. He will stand
by it to the end. He calls down a curse on any one who proclaims
a gospel to them contrary to that which they had received from

1:10 {Am I persuading?} (\peithō?\). Conative present, trying to
persuade like \zētō areskein\ (seeking to please) where the
effort is stated plainly. See 2Co 5:11. {I should not be} (\ouk
an ēmēn\)
. Conclusion of second class condition, determined as
unfulfilled. Regular construction here (\ei\ and imperfect
indicative in the condition \ēreskon, ouk an\ and imperfect in
the conclusion)
. About pleasing men see on ¯1Th 2:4. In Col
3:22; Eph. 6:6 Paul uses the word "men-pleasers"

1:11 {Which was preached} (\to euaggelisthen\). Play on the word
\euaggelion\ by first aorist passive participle of \euaggelizō\,
"the gospel which was gospelized by me." {It is not after man}
(\ouk estin kata anthrōpon\). Not after a human standard and so
he does not try to conform to the human ideal. Paul alone (1Co
3:3; 9:8; 15:32; Ro 3:15)
in the N.T. uses this old and common

1:12 {Nor was I taught it} (\oute edidachthēn\). He did not
receive it "from man" (\para anthrōpōn\, which shuts out both
\apo\ and \dia\ of verse 1)
, whether Peter or any other
apostle, nor was he taught it in the school of Gamaliel in
Jerusalem or at the University of Tarsus. He "received" his
gospel in one way, "through revelation of Jesus Christ" (\di'
apokalupseōs Iēsou Christou\)
. He used \parelabon\ in 1Co 15:3
about the reception of his message from Christ. It is not
necessary to say that he had only one (because of the aorist
active \parelabon\, from \paralambanō\, for it can very well be
constative aorist)
revelation (unveiling) from Christ. In fact,
we know that he had numerous visions of Christ and in 1Co 11:23
he expressly says concerning the origin of the Lord's Supper: "I
received (\parelabon\, again) from the Lord." The Lord Jesus
revealed his will to Paul.

1:13 {My manner of life} (\tēn emēn anastrophēn\). Late word in
this sense from Polybius on from \anastrephomai\. In the older
writers it meant literally "return" or "turning back." See 1Pe
1:15. It is absent in this sense in the papyri though the verb
is common. {In the Jews' religion} (\en tōi Ioudaismōi\). "In
Judaism." The word in N.T. only here and next verse, already in
II Macc. 2:21; 8:1; 14:38; IV Macc. 4:26. In these passages it
means the Jewish religion as opposed to the Hellenism that the
Syrian Kings were imposing upon the Jews. So later Justin Martyr
(386 D) will use \Christianismos\ for Christianity. Both words
are made from verbs in \-izō\. {Beyond measure} (\kath'
. "According to excess" (throwing beyond,
. {I persecuted} (\ediōkon\). Imperfect active, "I
used to persecute" (see Ac 7-9 for the facts). {Made havock of
(\eporthoun autēn\). Customary action again, imperfect of old
verb \portheō\, to lay waste, to sack. In N.T. only here, verse
23, and Ac 9:31 (used by Christians in Damascus of Saul after
his conversion of his former conduct, the very word of Paul
. Paul heard them use it of him and it stuck in his mind.

1:14 {I advanced} (\proekopton\). Imperfect active again of
\prokoptō\, old verb, to cut forward (as in a forest), to blaze a
way, to go ahead. In N.T. only here, Ro 13:12; 2Ti 2:16;
3:9,13. Paul was a brilliant pupil under Gamaliel. See Php
3:4-6. He was in the lead of the persecution also. {Beyond many
of mine own age}
(\huper pollous sunēlikiōtas\). Later compound
form for the Attic \hēlikiōtēs\ which occurs in Dion Hal. and
inscriptions (from \sun\, with, and \hēlikia\, age). Paul
modestly claims that he went "beyond" (\huper\) his
fellow-students in his progress in Judaism. {More exceedingly
(\perissoterōs zēlotēs\). Literally, "more exceedingly a
zealot." See on ¯Ac 1:13; 21:20; 1Co 14:12. Like Simon Zelotes.
{For the traditions of my fathers} (\tōn patrikōn mou
. Objective genitive after \zēlotēs\. \Patrikōn\ only
here in N.T., though old word from \patēr\ (father), paternal,
descending from one's father. For \patrōios\ see Ac 22:3,14.
Tradition (\paradosis\) played a large part in the teaching and
life of the Pharisees (Mr 7:1-23). Paul now taught the
Christian tradition (2Th 2:15).

1:15 {It was the good pleasure of God} (\eudokēsen ho theos\).
Paul had no doubt about God's purpose in him (1Th 2:8). {Who
separated me}
(\ho aphorisas me\). \Aphorizō\ is old word (from
\apo\ and \horos\)
to mark off from a boundary or line. The
Pharisees were the separatists who held themselves off from
others. Paul conceives himself as a spiritual Pharisee "separated
unto the gospel of God" (Ro 1:1, the same word \aphōrismenos\).
Before his birth God had his plans for him and called him.

1:16 {To reveal his Son in me} (\apokalupsai ton huion autou en
. By "in me" (\en emoi\) Paul can mean to lay emphasis on
his inward experience of grace or he may refer objectively to the
vision of Christ on the way to Damascus, "in my case." Paul uses
\en emoi\ in this sense (in my case) several times (verse 24;
2Co 13:3; Php 1:30; 1Ti 1:16)
. Once (1Co 14:11) \en emoi\ is
almost equivalent to the dative (to me). On the whole Lightfoot
seems correct here in taking it to mean "in my case," though the
following words suit either idea. Certainly Paul could not preach
Christ among the Gentiles without the rich inward experience and
in the objective vision he was called to that task. {I conferred
not with flesh and blood}
(\ou prosanethemēn sarki kai haimati\).
Second aorist middle indicative of \prosanatithēmi\, old verb,
double compound (\pros, ana\), to lay upon oneself in addition,
to betake oneself to another, to confer with, dative case as
here. In N.T. only here and 2:6.

1:17 {Before me} (\pro emou\). The Jerusalem apostles were
genuine apostles, but so is Paul. His call did not come from them
nor did he receive confirmation by them. {Into Arabia} (\eis
. This visit to Arabia has to come between the two
visits to Damascus which are not distinguished in Ac 9:22f. In
verse 23 Luke does speak of "considerable days" and so we must
place the visit to Arabia between verses 22,23.

1:18 {Then after three years} (\epeita meta tria etē\). A round
number to cover the period from his departure from Jerusalem for
Damascus to his return to Jerusalem. This stay in Damascus was an
important episode in Paul's theological readjustment to his new
experience. {To visit Cephas} (\historēsai Kēphān\). First aorist
infinitive of \historeō\, old verb (from \histōr\, one who knows
by inquiry)
, to gain knowledge by visiting. Only here in N.T. If
we turn to Ac 9:26-30, we shall see that the visit of two weeks
to Peter came after Barnabas endorsed Paul to the suspicious
disciples in Jerusalem and probably while he was preaching in the
city. It was a delightful experience, but Peter did not start
Paul upon his apostleship. He visited him as an equal. Peter no
doubt had much to say to Paul.

1:19 {Except James the brother of the Lord} (\ei mē Iakōbon ton
adelphon tou Kuriou\)
. James the son of Zebedee was still living
at that time. The rest of the twelve were probably away preaching
and James, brother of the Lord, is here termed an apostle, though
not one of the twelve as Barnabas is later so called. Paul is
showing his independence of and equality with the twelve in
answer to the attacks of the Judaizers.

1:20 {I lie not} (\ou pseudomai\). So important does he deem the
point that he takes solemn oath about it.

1:21 {Into the region of Syria and Cilicia} (\eis ta klimata tēs
Syrias kai tēs Kilikias\)
. This statement agrees with the record
in Ac 9:30. On \klimata\, see 2Co 11:10. Paul was not idle,
but at work in Tarsus and the surrounding country.

1:22 {And I was still unknown} (\ēmēn de agnoumenos\).
Periphrastic imperfect passive of \agnoeō\, not to know. {By
(\tōi prosōpōi\). Associative instrumental case. {Of Judea}
(\tēs Ioudaias\). As distinct from Jerusalem, for he had once
scattered the church there and had revisited them before coming
to Tarsus (Ac 9:26-30). In Ac 9:31 the singular of \ekklēsia\
is used, but in a geographic sense for Judea, Samaria, and

1:23 {They only heard} (\monon akouontes ēsan\). Periphrastic
imperfect, "They were only hearing from time to time." {That once
persecuted us}
(\ho diōkōn hēmas pote\). Present active articular
participle, a sort of participle of antecedent time suggested by
\pote\, "the one who used to persecute us once upon a time." {The
(\tēn pistin\). Here used in the sense of "the gospel" as
in Ac 6:7.

1:24 {They glorified} (\edoxazon\). Imperfect, kept on doing it.
{In me} (\en emoi\). In my case as in 1:16.

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Word Pictures in the New Testament
(Galatians: Chapter 1)