Galatians proves that we should observe the Torah


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Galatians, what a misunderstood book! 

Often, one of the first things Christians will say when you tell them the law has not been abolished is: "you need to read the book of Galatians!" In spite of the multitude of scriptures in the "New Testament" which demonstrate we should keep Yahweh's law, many understand Paul's letter to Galatians to state otherwise. 

In reality, there is not a single verse in the book of Galatians or anywhere in the scripture that would tell us that the law has been abolished. Rather, much to the contrary! The book of Galatians actually proves that while we are not saved by our observance of the Torah (The Hebrew word translated "Law" all throughout the scriptures), true believers will make a sincere effort to walk in its precepts.

In this study we will go through each of the verses in Galatians chapter 2 through chapter 5, which contain the key verses speaking of Yahweh's Torah/law and its place in our life. It is the words in these chapters that are most frequently understood as "abolishing the law". Thus, we will examine them to see if Paul is really making any claim that the law is now abolished and not to be heeded. 

Questions answered on 
these study pages are
:

  • Did Paul say that the law is abolished?
     
  • Was Paul talking about feast and Sabbath days when he said "you observe days, months, times and years?"
     
  • Does the Sinai covenant bring us to bondage?
     
  • What does it mean to be "under the law?"
     
  • Should believers in Messiah be circumcised?
     
  • Did Paul rebuke Peter for trying to get Gentiles to keep the Torah?
     
  • Are those who observe the Torah under a curse?
     
  • Did the law end when the Messiah came to earth?
SAlmost all of the Christian world regards Paul's letter to the Galatians as "proof" that we need not concern ourselves with keeping Yahweh's Torah/law. This is a major mistake that must be addressed thoroughly. It is often more difficult for a person to 'unlearn error' than to 'learn truth.' For this reason, the studies into the book of Galatians is longer than most. 

If you feel that I'm in error in this study, feel free to contact me. I'm only interested in the truth.

Galatians chapter 2

After his introduction, the first thing Paul mentioned in his letter to the Galatians was:

Galatians 1:6-9 I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you by the grace of Messiah and are turning to a different gospel-- 7 which is really no gospel at all. Evidently some people are throwing you into confusion and are trying to pervert the gospel of Messiah. 8 But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let him be eternally condemned! 9 As we have already said, so now I say again: If anybody is preaching to you a gospel other than what you accepted, let him be eternally condemned!

This topic is the subject matter throughout the book of Galatians. The real question in the book of Galatians isn't whether or not we should keep the Torah. The real question is this: What is the "true good news" that Yahushua wants us to proclaim? Does the true "good news" mean that we receive salvation after we have been circumcised and kept the law? Does the true "good news" proclaim salvation through abolishing the law so that our sins are taken away? Or does the true good news simply proclaim that we can receive forgiveness for transgressing that law if we repent and believe in Yahushua...nothing added?

Let's examine:

Galatians 2:1-2 Fourteen years later I went up again to Jerusalem, this time with Barnabas. I took Titus along also. 2 I went in response to a revelation and set before them the gospel that I preach among the Gentiles. But I did this privately to those who seemed to be leaders, for fear that I was running or had run my race in vain.

This chapter begins with Paul describing his time in Jerusalem with his fellow laborer in the faith, Barnabas. They had gone to Jerusalem to discuss the matter of what the true "gospel/good news" is really supposed to be. What is needful for a person to receive salvation? The 15th chapter in the book of Acts discusses this visit to Jerusalem in detail:

Acts 15:1-2 Some men came down from Judea to Antioch and were teaching the brothers: "Unless you are circumcised, according to the custom taught by Moses, you cannot be saved." 2 This brought Paul and Barnabas into sharp dispute and debate with them. So Paul and Barnabas were appointed, along with some other believers, to go up to Jerusalem to see the apostles and elders about this question.

Notice carefully that the reason this trip was necessary was due to certain men from Judea teaching the brethren that they would have no salvation unless they were first circumcised. When they brought this doctrine to the apostles and elders in Jerusalem, Peter/Kepha described this kind of theology as "putting on the necks of the disciples a yoke that neither we nor our fathers have been able to bear":

Acts 15:5-11 Then some of the believers who belonged to the party of the Pharisees stood up and said, "The Gentiles must be circumcised and required to obey the law of Moses." 6 The apostles and elders met to consider this question. 7 After much discussion, Peter got up and addressed them: "Brothers, you know that some time ago Elohim made a choice among you that the Gentiles might hear from my lips the message of the gospel and believe. 8 Elohim, who knows the heart, showed that he accepted them by giving the Holy Spirit to them, just as he did to us. 9 He made no distinction between us and them, for he purified their hearts by faith. 10 Now then, why do you try to test Elohim by putting on the necks of the disciples a yoke that neither we nor our fathers have been able to bear? 11 No! We believe it is through the grace of our Master Yahushua that we are saved, just as they are."

Peter/Kepha states that all are "saved" through the grace of Yahushua Messiah. As evidenced by this statement, the question they were discussing is whether or not the Gentiles were saved through the grace of Yahushua the Messiah, or by circumcision and keeping commandments. This was also the original question in Acts 15:1.

Kepha said, "We believe it is through the grace of our Master Yahushua that we are saved, just as they are." His point was that everyone, Jew or Gentile, is saved by grace, not by keeping the law or by circumcision. Even Jews who had been circumcised and kept the law didn't have salvation until they believed in Yahushua. He also said that to make circumcision or Torah/law observance the requirement for salvation would be to "test Elohim." But how would it "test Elohim?" 

The testing would be: "Can Yahweh still bring the Gentiles into His flock while making the (quite painful) painful act of adult circumcision, and/or keeping the Torah/law of Yahweh a prerequisite to being saved?" In truth, there was not a man in all the generations of Israel who had ever kept the Torah, so to make the keeping of the Torah a requirement before salvation was not the true "good news" that Yahushua and the apostles were to be teaching. 

So Peter, after detailing the proof that Yahweh had accepted the Gentiles in their uncircumcised state (Cornelius received the Spirit in Acts 10), affirmed that both Jews and Gentiles are saved through the grace of Yahushua the Messiah rather than circumcision or any other act of Torah/law observance. The ultimate decision in Acts 15 by James was not to require circumcision for salvation (Click here for a verse by verse study in Acts 15 for details).

So who were these "men...from Judea" anyway? To properly understand the book of Galatians and the context of Paul's letter, it is important that we have an good understanding of what kind of people Paul was facing. For this reason we will begin to identify the beliefs and characteristics of these "men...from Judaea." In this study, we will keeping a running list of notable characteristics of these "certain men" as we go along. Here is what we have so far:

Continuing in Galatians 2:

Galatians 2:2-3 I went in response to a revelation and set before them the gospel that I preach among the Gentiles. But I did this privately to those who seemed to be leaders, for fear that I was running or had run my race in vain. 3 Yet not even Titus, who was with me, was compelled to be circumcised, even though he was a Greek.  

Chronologically, the event Paul is describing (Acts 15) marks the first notice of Titus in scripture. Titus would eventually go on to be Paul's co-laborer and assistant in his ministry with the Corinthians and other places (see letters to the Corinthians & the book of Titus). Titus was among the group that went to Jerusalem and the apostles in Jerusalem did not require him to be circumcised. 

Galatians 2:4-5 This matter arose because some false brothers had infiltrated our ranks to spy on the freedom we have in Messiah Yahushua and to make us slaves. 5 We did not give in to them for a moment, so that the truth of the gospel might remain with you.

Again, the emphasis is placed on the "truth of the gospel/good news" being proclaimed rather than "another gospel." In verse 4, Paul identifies the "men...from Judea" as "false brothers". We also see they they like to work in secret. Another attribute about them can be found in Galatians 6:

Galatians 6:12-13 Those who want to make a good impression outwardly are trying to compel you to be circumcised. The only reason they do this is to avoid being persecuted for the cross of Messiah. 13 Not even those who are circumcised obey the law, yet they want you to be circumcised that they may boast about your flesh.

So these "false brethren" were actually Torah breakers themselves but they were most interested in circumcising Gentiles so that they could go back to their Pharisee friends and brag about it. The focus on the praise of men was amongst the notable characteristics of some Pharisees of that time:

Matthew 23:4-5a They tie up heavy loads and put them on men's shoulders, but they themselves are not willing to lift a finger to move them. 5 "Everything they do is done for men to see: 

What Yahushua said about them continued to be true when Paul wrote this letter to the Galatians. They wanted to throw the weight of having the learn & keep the Torah and getting circumcised upon the necks of Gentiles before they would be accepted as having had salvation, and thus accepted into the fellowship and brotherhood of Messiah. This is not Yahushua's yoke at all.

Let's add these elements to the list of notable characteristics:

So these Pharisees regarded it as their duty to go to the Gentile believers in Yahushua and try to bring them over to "another gospel" which had their own way of receiving salvation. They apparently viewed the true good news as "bad news" for the future of their sect and they wanted to try and pervert the true good news with their doctrines. 

With this understanding of what these "false brothers" were all about, let's continue reading Galatians 2:

Galatians 2:6-10 As for those who seemed to be important-- whatever they were makes no difference to me; Elohim does not judge by external appearance-- those men added nothing to my message. 7 On the contrary, they saw that I had been entrusted with the task of preaching the gospel to the Gentiles, just as Peter had been to the Jews. 8 For Elohim, who was at work in the ministry of Peter as an apostle to the Jews, was also at work in my ministry as an apostle to the Gentiles. 9 James, Peter and John, those reputed to be pillars, gave me and Barnabas the right hand of fellowship when they recognized the grace given to me. They agreed that we should go to the Gentiles, and they to the Jews. 10 All they asked was that we should continue to remember the poor, the very thing I was eager to do.

So Paul tells the Galatians that the apostles and elders added nothing to the good news that Paul was proclaiming to the Gentiles. In fact, they had agreed to have Paul and Barnabas go to the Gentiles while they went to the Jews. However, Paul next reports that Peter/Kepha and Barnabas got caught up in a form of hypocrisy:

Galatians 2:11-13 When Peter came to Antioch, I opposed him to his face, because he was clearly in the wrong. 12 Before certain men came from James, he used to eat with the Gentiles. But when they arrived, he began to draw back and separate himself from the Gentiles because he was afraid of those who belonged to the circumcision group. 13 The other Jews joined him in his hypocrisy, so that by their hypocrisy even Barnabas was led astray.

Why was it hypocritical? And why was Paul bold enough to rebuke Kepha/Peter, a great man who walked with Yahushua for over 3 years? 

They had just had the council in Acts 15 and they had all come to Antioch to deliver the decision to the brethren (Acts 15:30-35). When all together at the council, Kepha/Peter and Barnabas both stood with Paul and agreed with the good news they had been proclaiming. So for both of them to withdraw from keeping company with the Gentiles was quite hypocritical.  They were standing with the truth that Gentiles were to be accepted into the brotherhood and having salvation in Acts 15, but in practice they were withdrawing and separating themselves from them out out of concern for what those of "the circumcision" might say or do. 

Peter was especially at fault because he had walked with Yahushua for over 3 years and was chosen by Yahweh to first bring to good news to the Gentiles (Acts 10). At that time he was willing to fellowship with the Gentiles and defended it in Acts 11. So here was a situation where some very important leaders are sinning and causing confusion among the Gentiles by their actions, which was contrary to the decision that was made beforehand. So Paul asks:

Galatians 2:14 When I saw that they were not acting in line with the truth of the gospel

(Again we see that the primary issue here is "what is the true gospel [good news]?" Paul rebuked Kepha/Peter for not walking uprightly according to the truth of the good news.)

Galatians 2:14-15 When I saw that they were not acting in line with the truth of the gospel, I said to Peter 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? 15 "We who are Jews by birth and not 'Gentile sinners'

Now there are some who like to interpret this as Paul in essence saying "If you are a Jew and have rightly abandoned the law (living like a Gentile), why do you compel the Gentiles to keep the law like a Jew by only eating with the Jews?" Due to this interpretation, it is commonly understood that this is a passage that supports the doctrine of the law being abolished. But verse 15 exposes the fallacy of this interpretation when Paul contrasts the Jews with Gentiles and identifies the Gentiles as being sinners. 

So while many think that Paul's statement of Peter "live like a Gentile" was a positive one, it is actually a negative one because in verse 15 Paul says we are not "Gentile sinners!" In other words Paul was basically saying, "Peter, how are you ever going to bring the Gentiles (sinners) into living righteous life when you are acting sinner yourself?" This was a very convicting statement to Peter that exposed his hypocrisy. 

So rather than Paul's rebuke being proof that a Gentile should not keep the Torah, it was simply a rebuke that Peter himself was sinning (breaking the law of Yahweh, 1John 3:4) when he chose to fear man over Yahweh, pretend like he was going along with a false gospel, and play the hypocrite. 

This interpretation is further evidenced when we look into one of the alternative readings in older Greek manuscripts. Consider the comparison here:

The NIV reads: "How is it, then, that you force Gentiles to follow Jewish customs?"

The Nestle-Aland Greek text (based on older manuscripts) reads: "How can you compel the Gentiles to live as the Jews?"

So the question wasn't "Why are you over there trying to get Gentiles (Torah breakers) to live like Jews (Torah keepers)? Don't you know the law is abolished?" The real question was "How can you ever compel the Gentile sinners to keep the Torah/law (like Jews) if you are a sinning yourself?" Both Greek texts are compatible with the latter understanding, but the Nestle-Aland text would contradict the common Christian interpretation of these verses. 

Also, the word translated "force" doesn't actually mean "force" in the sense of controlling someone. The same Greek word (#315) is translated "compel" in the parable where Messiah invites the poor and disabled to His wedding feast:

Luk 14:21-23 - "So that servant came and reported these things to his master. Then the master of the house, being angry, said to his servant,`Go out quickly into the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in here the poor and the maimed and the lame and the blind.'
22 "And the servant said,`Master, it is done as you commanded, and still there is room.'
23 "Then the master said to the servant,`Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled.

So Peter wasn't trying to force anyone to do anything. It wasn't wrong for Peter to compel them to live like Jews (obedient to Yahweh) rather than be "sinners of the Gentiles."

The True Good News Explained

Let's now look further into these verses to hear a declaration of the true good news, something Kepha/Peter was failing to be straightforward about:

Galatians 2:15-16 "We who are Jews by birth and not 'Gentile sinners' 16 know that a man is not justified by observing the law, but by faith in Yahushua Messiah. So we, too, have put our faith in Messiah Yahushua that we may be justified by faith in Messiah and not by observing the law, because by observing the law no one will be justified.

In verse 15, the words "who are" are in italics in the KJV to alert the reader that those words are not found in the original text, but the NIV rarely ever uses italics since it is not a literal translation but uses "dynamic equivalence" (see NIV preface) which allows them to translate through their own interpretation of the Greek and Hebrew. Commas are also not found in the Greek or Hebrew language. 

Therefore, what it should read is, "We, Jews by birth and not 'Gentile sinners,' know that a man is not justified by observing the law, but by faith in Yahushua." This solidifies the understanding that Paul is stating that righteous Jews, who know the truth, ought to know what is right and proclaim the right way to the Gentiles. Therefore he was saying that "WE (Paul, Barnabas, Kepha and all of them), Jews by nature" know very well that we are not justified (made righteous) by observing the law, but by faith in Yahushua. 

The word translated "Justified" in verse 15 (Grk. #1344) simply means to be "declared righteous." 

It is a simple but important truth that none of us are able to be made righteous through the law of Yahweh. The law of Yahweh simply tells us what is right and wrong. It will not declare any of us to be righteous. To the contrary, it will declare that we have been unrighteous! None of us will be able to stand before Yahweh on the day of judgment and say, "From birth until death, I kept Your law!" For this reason, we are condemned unless we can somehow be declared righteous even though we were not. We need a Savior. We need have Yahushua's righteousness applied to us in order for us to have salvation. Once we are clothed with His righteousness by faith, we have all the righteousness we need to be saved.

When Kepha/Peter refused to eat with the Gentiles, a people who were formerly idol worshipers and were still learning about the Torah/Law, he was suggesting that they had not yet received salvation and were unworthy to sit with him at the table. By his example he was suggesting that he agreed with those "of the circumcision" that the Gentiles needed to be circumcised and keep the Torah in order to be accepted by Yahweh and accepted into the family of believers. But the truth is, in Yahushua we only need to repent (turn away from sin and toward righteousness) and Yahweh will purify our hearts by faith, giving us the grace to learn His commandments--at a pace that we can bear-- without fear of condemnation. 

Consider the differences in the two "gospels:"

Good News of 'the Circumcision' The True Good News
  • Repent and accept Yahushua

THEN

  • Learn all of the Torah and obey it

THEN

  • Get circumcised

THEN

  • YOU ARE ABRAHAM'S SEED AND ARE DECLARED RIGHTEOUS
  • Repent and accept Yahushua (Acts 2:38)

THEN

  • YOU ARE ABRAHAM'S SEED AND ARE DECLARED RIGHTEOUS

It was this "good news of the circumcision" that Paul spent a tremendous amount of time battling against. They truly believed that a person was only saved when they became a son of Abraham through circumcision. But why? 

The reality is that in scripture, there is almost a ring of logic to it. The logic was that since circumcision was the sign of the covenant between Yahweh and Abraham, which stated that He would give Abraham's descendants the land of Canaan, one needed to be circumcised in order to be a son of Abraham and thus--an inheritor of the land. Being an inheritor of the land was needed in order to receive all the promised blessings that came along with that covenant--namely eternal life in that land. But there are number of reasons why this belief was wrong and Paul discusses this in great detail in Galatians chapter 3. We will go over that later.

Meanwhile let's continue we left off in chapter 2:

Galatians 2:17-18 If, while we seek to be justified in Messiah, it becomes evident that we ourselves are sinners, does that mean that Messiah promotes sin? Absolutely not! 18 If I rebuild what I destroyed, I prove that I am a lawbreaker.

At this point Paul is making a very interesting statement. He discusses a potential situation where a person who sought to be justified by Messiah was instead found to be a sinner. But how could such a situation be possible? Isn't everyone who seeks to be justified by Messiah "declared righteous?"

The answer to that is a flat "NO." Not everyone who seeks to be justified by Messiah is declared righteous. Yahushua said that Himself in Matthew 7:

Matthew 7:21-23 Not everyone who says to me, 'Master, Master,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me on that day, 'Master, Master, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?' 23 Then I will tell them plainly, 'I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!'

The ones Yahushua said He would condemn apparently thought that they were "justified by Messiah" and even claimed to do various miracles as a testimony that Yahushua was with them. But they were found sinners ("Away from me, you evildoers!"). 

So if one refuses to do the will of the Heavenly Father, they will not be declared righteous. The word translated "evildoers" is Grk. word #458, anomia. This word literally means, "illegality, i.e. violation of law" according to the Strong's Greek Lexicon. The Thayer's Greek Lexicon says it means, "1) the condition of without law 1a) because ignorant of it 1b) because of violating it 2) contempt and violation of law, iniquity, wickedness.

The truth is that those claim to follow Yahushua but want to continue to live a life of sin (transgressing the Torah) are in big trouble! We need to not be among them! 

Therefore, Messiah is not a promoter of sin at all. As Paul said, "Absolutely not!" (Lit. May it not be!)

Galatians 2:17-18 "If, while we seek to be justified in Messiah, it becomes evident that we ourselves are sinners, does that mean that Messiah promotes sin? Absolutely not! 18 If I rebuild what I destroyed, I prove that I am a lawbreaker.

Here are a couple of other places where Paul said this same phrase:

Romans 6:15 What then? Shall we sin because we are not under law but under grace? By no means!

Romans 3:31 Do we, then, nullify the law by this faith? Not at all! Rather, we uphold the law.

Paul was again saying, "Absolutely not/not at all/by no means!" should we continue in sin or even think that we nullify the law through faith. Rather, we uphold the law (Greek word #2476, 'cause it to stand'). He is basically saying the same thing here in Galatians. Messiah is not a minister of sin (breaking the law). 

1 John 3:4 Everyone who sins breaks the law; in fact, sin is lawlessness.

So Paul says if I choose to build again the things which I destroyed (sin), I prove that I am a lawbreaker. Read it again:

Galatians 2:17-18 "If, while we seek to be justified in Messiah, it becomes evident that we ourselves are sinners, does that mean that Messiah promotes sin? Absolutely not! 18 If I rebuild what I destroyed, I prove that I am a lawbreaker.

The word translated "lawbreaker" here (#3848) is found 5 times in the 'New Testament' and every single time it is used in reference to someone disobeying the law of Yahweh given through Moses (Rom. 2:25, 27; Gal. 2:18; Jas. 2:9, 11). 

But how was sin "destroyed" in us to begin with? He answers this:

Galatians 2:19-20 For through the law I died to the law so that I might live for Elohim. 20 I have been crucified with Messiah and I no longer live, but Messiah lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of Elohim, who loved me and gave himself for me.

Note that it says we "died to the law." Note that it does NOT say the law is dead to us! There is a huge difference. 

If we are dead to the law then we have fulfilled the requirement that the law demands: our death. The law demands that we die because at some point in our life we have broken that law. When we receive Yahushua, we become "dead to the law" because we are "crucified/impaled with Messiah." But we also "live for Elohim."

What is being said here is that if one chooses to "rebuild what I destroyed" (sin) we prove ourselves to be lawbreakers and are rebuilding the sin that was placed upon us before we "died to the law." Yahushua is not a minister of sin. He didn't die for us and destroy our sins only so that we could go back to our former life of transgressing the law. He died for us so that the law's death requirement could be fulfilled in us if we become a part of His body which was put to death on the tree but now "live for Elohim!" Read the verse again with this understanding in mind and it makes perfect sense:

Galatians 2:17-18 "If, while we seek to be justified in Messiah, it becomes evident that we ourselves are sinners, does that mean that Messiah promotes sin? Absolutely not! 18 If I rebuild what I destroyed, I prove that I am a lawbreaker. 19 For through the law I died to the law so that I might live for Elohim. 20 I have been crucified with Messiah and I no longer live, but Messiah lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of Elohim, who loved me and gave himself for me.

"For" in verse 19 indicate that the words to follow were the reasons why Yahushua is not a minister of sin. We are not to rebuild the things we destroyed (transgression of the law) and we died to the law so that we could "live for Elohim." It is no longer we who live but it is "Messiah that liveth in" us.

Galatians 2:19-20 For through the law I died to the law so that I might live for Elohim. 20 I have been crucified with Messiah and I no longer live, but Messiah lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of Elohim, who loved me and gave himself for me.

This being the case:

1 John 2:4-6 The man who says, "I know him," but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in him. 5 But if anyone obeys his word, Elohim's love is truly made complete in him. This is how we know we are in him: 6 Whoever claims to live in him must walk as Yahushua did.

If "Messiah lives in us" then we will walk as He walked. How did He walk? 

He kept the Torah to absolute perfection. Because He kept the Torah to absolute perfection, He is the righteous one. His righteousness is what saves us when it is no longer we who live but Messiah who lives in us. Yahushua is not an minister of sin, He is a minister of deliverance from sin by saving us from death and living out the righteous commandments IN US that He kept while on the earth. Our obedience to the Torah/law of Yahweh is the evidence that Yahushua lives in us.

This is not to say that Yahushua demands that we instantly walk in perfection. He only requires that we turn away from sin, truly (from the heart) seeking to keep Yahweh's commandments as we learn them at a pace that HE decides, not man. Ultimately our righteousness comes from Yahushua the Messiah who gave His life for us.

Galatians 2:21 I do not set aside the grace of Elohim, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Messiah died for nothing!"

If our righteousness (and thus, our salvation) were to come from our own Torah keeping, we could have been declared righteous without Messiah and He died for nothing. 

The "good news of the circumcision" taught that believers in Yahushua are not saved until they learn and obey the Torah, then get circumcised. But the true "good news" is that we are all saved the moment we choose to repent and have faith in Yahushua. And what good news that is! Our hearts are purified by faith the moment we repent and believe. It is just as Kepha/Peter said in Acts 2:38:

Acts 2:38-39 Peter replied, "Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Yahushua Messiah for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off-- for all whom Yahweh our Elohim will call."

We repent, and are baptized in Yahushua's name to represent the death of the old man and Yahushua living in us. The Spirit of Yahweh then dwells with in us, guiding us to all truth, guiding us day by day to higher levels of obedience, just as the prophet Ezekiel predicted this indwelling of His Spirit would do:

Ezekiel 36:27 And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws.

Those who promoted the "gospel of the circumcision" believed circumcision and Torah obedience had to come first, and that's why they were shocked when the Spirit fell upon uncircumcised men:

Acts 10:45 The circumcised believers who had come with Peter were astonished that the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out even on the Gentiles.

Still, there was a tendency for a circumcised person who is learned in the Torah to treat those who just came to Messiah differently, as if they had no salvation yet. This is not the true "good news" and that is why this letter to Galatians was written.

The "good news" isn't that we are forgiven and now are free to disobey Yahweh's law now. That's not good news at all.

The "good news" isn't that we achieve salvation and forgiveness through Yahushua after we get circumcised and keep the law.

The good news is that Yahweh receives us and is willing to save us the very moment we turn our hearts toward learning and following His ways of truth in the Torah and the rest of His word, receiving Yahushua the Messiah as our righteousness for when we failed to be obedient toward it. 

The moment we decide to do that, we are received into the body of Messiah and are now sons and daughters of Elohim, children of Israel, through Yahushua the Son of the living Elohim, who, by the Spirit of Yahweh, dwells within us.

GALATIANS CHAPTER 3 > > >


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