Paul’s great concern in writing to the churches of Galatia is the purity of the Gospel as it
was handed to him and as he gave it to them. As with nearly every generation of
Christians since, the churches were being tempted to add to the Good News of
salvation by grace through faith.
Paul is adamant that if you add anything to the Gospel, then what you are left with is no
longer Gospel. You are seeking salvation by your own works and you are accursed
Paul doesn’t intend for the Galatians’ faith to be blind. He uses verses 10-24 to offer
some logical proof about why the Gospel he has committed his life to preaching came
from God and not from man. He offers four specific proofs in this passage.
1) The first proof that Paul’s ministry was given by God’s favor is that Paul received the
Gospel alongside suffering, not prosperity. (v.10)
2) The second proof that Paul’s ministry was given by God is that Paul received the
Gospel he preached from Christ, not an earthly authority. (vv. 11-12, 16b-24)
3) The third proof that Paul’s ministry was given by God is that Paul received the Gospel
when he was not seeking the approval of the Church. (vv. 13-14)
4) The fourth proof that Paul’s ministry was given by God is that Paul received the Gospel
with a compulsion to preach it where it had not been heard. (vv. 15-16)
Paul’s entire life after his conversion to Christ was compelled by the glory of God (v. 24)
and not by the opinions of other people. If we are to follow Jesus, we must take this
approach as well.
- Is peer pressure positive, negative, or neutral?
- What are some of the biggest areas of peer pressure that we experience in different stages of life?
- Has there been a time when you did something to please other people that ended up costing you big time?
- What are the costs of living to please God?
- How do we know that Paul was motivated by something other than peer pressure?
- Does Paul’s ignoring of the opinions of others help or hurt his declaration of the Gospel?
- Was Paul’s suffering used to adorn the Gospel?
- How might Paul have been tempted to change the Gospel to please others?
- How can the traditions of the church lead to tainting the Gospel?
- Why is it compulsory to preach the Gospel in places where it is not being preached?
- How can we as a church engage in taking the Gospel to the unreached?