The Run Down
Second Mission 49AD thru Galatia then Paul wrote to Galatians 51AD
Peter’s conduct supports Paul’s disappointment with the lack of Apostolic Leadership concerning the Core!
In the above writings, Paul was ready to butt heads if need be with even the Apostles at Jerusalem- James, Peter, and John.
With those who “seemed” (4 times) to be influential.
As noted previously, Paul’s Apostleship was from Jesus himself… and not by man… yet the “Gospel” of freedom from the Law is agreed upon and coincides with their understanding also. Esp. from Peter’s defense in Acts of the Dream and Experience with Cornelius.
They give Paul and Barnabas the right hand of fellowship after they discuss the matter.
There is a question as to when this occurred Cephas “had come”….
Either time frame works… before the council or after it.
The above was about Gentile liberty,… from Gentiles having to come to Christ via the law or not. Not.
This incident with Cephas is about Jewish liberty to eat freely. As Jesus declared in Mark 7:19. As Jesus had already clearly brought to Peter’s attention in his dream and experience with Cornelius.
So Paul opposes Peter to his face.
Peter knows what is right…. He simply caves in to peer pressure.
Has Peter done this before?
Wow… such a great man… still with great weaknesses. God is still working on him huh?
Barnabas even falls into this trap.
Paul’s delicate balance:
Unity with the Apostles / Disappointment
Paul Nimbly Wisely and Deftly:
Sensitive, clear, unifying, gentle, open, able in the Gospel?
Insensitive, foggy, divisive, brash, quiet, unable in the Gospel?
Peter and Barnabas cave in.
You know what’s right… how often do you cave?
It isn’t always smooth… now or then….
So don’t walk when you discover “church” isn’t perfect!
(Remember… you are in it too!)
Main doctrinal argument begins.
Jews not Gentile sinners
Paul’s Irony… for he will argue both are justified by God the same way.
Jews have privilege of revealed religion. Romans 9:4-5.
Not justified (counted righteous, to declare righteous or innocent).
Righteousness is the unique characteristic of God.
To condemn is the opposite of to justify.
The judicial action of God. Justified, counted righteous, declared innocent, in a legal sense, through faith in Christ Jesus.
Faith is belief/trust.
Works of the law specifically for Jews, relates to the Torah, and an obedience to it that some think make them right before God.
Same implication for all of man’s religious laws or systems.
We aren’t acquitted due to our action, our good fulfilled obedience,…
Actually it’s in realizing we can’t fulfill the law of any system, to be good enough, that we know we must have the Savior…. And our justification rest on what he has done.
3 x repetition here in this one verse.
Paul answering the rhetorical question, if by faith in Christ, then antinomian, or no moral standard to live by, or need to live by.
Paul will say “certainly not!”.
There is a legal acquittal, but it is not abstract.
2 Cor. 5:17; Gal. 6:15. A new creation is born.
Something truly happens in new birth. The Holy Spirit comes inside.
Heb. 8:8-10, from Jer. 31:33 laws in their minds and hearts.
Returning to the law,… as Peter was doing above… is turning from the one true way to God and that was in Christ.
Paul can’t rebuild the law after tearing it down for Christ.
Through the law I died. The law, Romans 7:4-6, teaches us of our sin. It performs a good function of revealing our hopelessness in seeking salvation through human works…. Our hopelessness as sinners… yet reveals our great need for a Savior… we find God in Christ.
Paul will repeat. Emphatically his union with Christ, in crucifixion, and life.
The life Paul now lives,… is not in striving for approval by obedience to the law to find acquittal with God,… no… it’s by faith in Christ.
Again stating the basis of the Gospel… God’s love for him in giving Jesus in his stead.
Don’t nullify the grace of God by our efforts to earn salvation, approval, acquittal.
If rightness with God can be gained how most try… then Jesus died for nothing.
One must either receive God’s offer of salvation or insult him.