Sometimes we dismiss idol worship as something that only happened in ancient times. The slideshow below shows people leaving sacrifices for Buddah and other gods in temples in Thailand. I was struck that people would leave food and gifts that would rot and decay. It was a waste of food, but also a sad commentary on the people that felt compelled to follow rituals that accomplished nothing.
In the movie Braveheart, William Wallace chose to die rather than to return to tyranny. In Galatians 4 Paul pleads with the Galatians to not return to the tyranny of the law.
Last week in Galatians 1:1-10 Paul opens the letter with his usual introduction, skips his usual commendation and jumps right into the problem. The churches in Galatia were in the process of adding to the gospel he has preached to them. They were adding works to the act of salvation by grace.
In the rest of chapter one and the first part of chapter two Paul strengthen’s his own apostolic authority:
1:11-24 - Paul explains that he was commissioned an apostle by Christ Himself, referencing his Damascus Road experience.
2:1-10 - Paul relates his trip to Jerusalem where the original apostles affirm him as an apostle to the Gentiles. They see how God is working through Paul and give him their full support. Many believe this was the same meeting known as the Jerusalem council.
Now Paul turns his focus on the root of the problem - Justification by faith alone
I hope you will find these resources helpful. My goal is to post resources each Wednesday night once the meeting is over.
Resources for Galatians 1:1-10
Notes, map of Galatia, Video Overview of Galatians, and Live Discussion
Please let me know if these resources are beneficial. The "podcast" is something we are experimenting with. We are recording the live discussion. Because I think the comments of others are very valuable, I wanted to make them available to you. I thought teachers who cannot attend might be able to download and listen while driving, running, walking, or other times.
Praying for you.