The letter from the Apostle Paul to the churches in Galatia is a critical letter for the modern-day Christians also. The issues Paul addresses in his letter to Galatians exist in the Christian community today. Many a believer, even the sincere ones, are confused and even mislead by often a deliberate perversion of the gospel, the good news in Jesus Christ. Churches in Galatia were comprised mostly of the Gentile converts to Judaism. The Gentiles in Galatia adopted Judaism because of its well-structured and ethically adorned worship service. The structured daily life of the Jews was more appealing than the more loosely-structured Roman society. However, the Galatian Gentile converts to Judaism could not accept the sacrificial system centered in Jerusalem.
Paul preached to them that the salvation which Christ accomplished on the cross at Golgotha is for the entire humankind. The full and finished deliverance from guilt and punishment for sin could be received and become a personal experience by trusting, or having faith, in Jesus alone. When the Gentiles in Galatia heard the good news of salvation, they were glad and welcomed it wholeheartedly. The first converts to Christianity in Galatia were Jews. The Jewish converts to Christianity were interpreting and teaching the Scriptures in the new light, but they still had their hope fixed on the future Jewish Messiah. This created confusion among Gentile believers in Galatia who could not reconcile the salvation accomplished on the cross at Golgotha with the hope for the future salvation in the Jewish national Messiah.
The Gentile believers in Galatia did not accept Jesus Christ as the Jewish national Messiah but as the Savior of the world. Many among the Jewish believers were offended by the idea that Jesus Christ, the Messiah, was not for the Jews only but the entire humankind. Paul preached that Jesus Christ is the promised Messiah and He is the Savior of the Gentiles also; and, that in Jesus Christ there was no difference between Jews and Gentiles.
Will continue in the next blog.