May - Reading 17

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  1. Clint Kritzer

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    GLOSSARY OF TERMS – GALATIANS

    Accursed {eternally condemned} (1:8,9) – Anathema; given over to the judgments of God. He who corrupts divine truth is an enemy of God, and is under the curse. (People’s New Testament Commentary, 1891)

    Judaism {Jew’s religion} (1:13, 14) – In the Jews' religion. In the belief and practice of Judaism; that is, as it was understood in the time when he was educated. It was not merely in the religion of Moses, but it was in that religion as understood and practised by the Jews in his time, when opposition to Christianity constituted a very material part of it. In that religion Paul proceeds to show that he had been more distinguished than most persons of his time. (Albert Barne's Notes on the New Testament, 1840)

    Grace (1:3, 6, 15; 2:9, 21; 5:4; 6:18) - The New Testament. Grace in the New Testament is largely encompassed by the use of the word charis . While the idea of unmerited favor is found in some other places, the concept may be fairly restricted within the bounds of this article to the use of that term. It is worth noting that, though Jesus is never quoted as using the word charis , his teaching is full of the unmerited favor of God. Perhaps the parable of the prodigal son is the most obvious example. In that parable grace is extended to one who has no basis upon which to be shown that grace, other than the fact that he has asked in humility and repentance to be shown it. Other parables demonstrate grace in the teaching of Jesus, perhaps most notably the parable of the laborers in he vineyard (Matt 20:1-16) and the parable of the great supper (Luke 14:16-24). (Baker’s Evangelical Dictionary, 1996)

    Faith (1:23; 2:15, 16, 20; 3:1, 2, 5, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 14, 22, 23, 24, 25, 25; 5:5, 6, 22; 6:10) - Faith is in general the persuasion of the mind that a certain statement is true (Phil 1:27; 2th 2:13). Its primary idea is trust. A thing is true, and therefore worthy of trust. It admits of many degrees up to full assurance of faith, in accordance with the evidence on which it rests. (Easton’s Bible Dictionary, 1897)

    Revelation (1:12; 2:2) – But by the revelation of Jesus Christ. On his way to Damascus, and subsequently in the temple, Ac 22:17-21. Doubtless he received communications at various times from the Lord Jesus with regard to the nature of the gospel and his duty, the sense here is, that he was not indebted to men for his knowledge of the gospel, but had derived it entirely from the Saviour. (Albert Barne's Notes on the New Testament, 1840)

    Gospel (1:6, 7, 8, 9, 11; 2:2, 5, 7, 14; 3:8; 4:13) - Signifies good news, and is that revelation and dispensation which God has made known to guilty man through Jesus Christ our Savior and Redeemer. Scripture speaks of "the gospel of the kingdom," Mt
    24:14, the gospel "of the grace of God," Ac 20:24, "of Christ," and "of peace," Ro 1:16; 10:15. It is the "glorious" and the "everlasting" gospel, 1Ti 1:11; Re 14:6, and well merits the noblest epithets that can be given it. The declaration of this gospel was made through the life and teaching, the death, resurrection, and ascension of our Lord. (American Tract Society Dictionary, 1902)

    Law (2:16, 19, 21; 3:1, 2, 5, 10, 11, 12, 13, 15, 17, 18, 19, 21, 23, 24; 4:4, 5, 21; 5:4, 14, 18, 23; 6:2, 13) – Law is a rule of action.
    (1.) The Law of Nature is the will of God as to human conduct, founded on the moral difference of things, and discoverable by natural light (Ro 1:20; 2:14-15). This law binds all men at all times. It is generally designated by the term conscience, or the capacity of
    being influenced by the moral relations of things.
    (2.) The Ceremonial Law prescribes under the Old Testament the rites and ceremonies of worship. This law was obligatory only till Christ, of whom these rites were typical, had finished his work (Heb 7:9,11; 10:1; Eph 2:16). It was fulfilled rather than abrogated by the gospel.
    (3.) The Judicial Law, the law which directed the civil policy of the Hebrew nation.
    (4.) The Moral Law is the revealed will of God as to human conduct, binding on all men to the end of time. It was promulgated at Sinai. It is perfect (Ps 19:7), perpetual (Mt 5:17-18), holy (Ro 7:12), good, spiritual (Ro 7:14), and exceeding broad (Ps 119:96). Although binding on all, we are not under it as a covenant of works (Ga 3:17).
    (5.) Positive Laws are precepts founded only on the will of God. They are right because God commands them.
    (6.) Moral positive laws are commanded by God because they are right. (Easton’s Bible Dictionary, 1897)

    Justification {justified, justify} (2:16, 17, 21; 3:8, 11, 24; 5:4) - a forensic term, opposed to condemnation. As regards its nature, it is the judicial act of God, by which he pardons all the sins of those who believe in Christ, and accounts, accepts, and treats them as righteous in the eye of the law, i.e., as conformed to all its demands. In addition to the pardon (q.v.) of sin, justification declares that all the claims of the law are satisfied in respect of the justified. It is the act of a judge and not of a sovereign. The law is not relaxed or set aside, but is declared to be fulfilled in the strictest sense; and so the person justified is declared to be entitled to all the advantages and rewards arising from perfect obedience to the law (Romans 5:1-10).
    It proceeds on the imputing or crediting to the believer by God himself of the perfect righteousness, active and passive, of his Representative and Surety, Jesus Christ (Romans 10:3-9). Justification is not the forgiveness of a man without righteousness, but a declaration that he possesses a righteousness which perfectly and for ever satisfies the law, namely, Christ's righteousness (2 Corinthians 5:21; Romans 4:6-8).
    The sole condition on which this righteousness is imputed or credited to the believer is faith in or on the Lord Jesus Christ. Faith is called a "condition," not because it possesses any merit, but only because it is the instrument, the only instrument by which the soul appropriates or apprehends Christ and his righteousness (Romans 1:17; 3:25,26; 4:20,22; Philippians 3:8-11; Galatians 2:16).
    The act of faith which thus secures our justification secures also at the same time our sanctification (q.v.); and thus the doctrine of justification by faith does not lead to licentiousness (Romans 6:2-7). Good works, while not the ground, are the certain consequence of justification (6:14; 7:6). (Easton’s Bible Dictionary, 1897)



    Works {deeds} – (2:16; 3:2, 5, 10; 5:19) - The term erga nomou ("works of the Law") is used by Paul to denote deeds prescribed by the Mosaic Law (Rom 2:15; 3:20, 27, 28; Gal 2:16; 3:2, 5, 10). Although not found in the Old Testament or later rabbinic literature, this phrase appears in Qumran literature (maase torah,4QFlor 1:1-7; cf. 1QS 6:18; 1 QpHab 7:11). At times Paul shortens the phrase and uses erga, "works" (Rom 4:2, 6; 9:11, 32; 11:6), referring to a mode of relationship to the Law and set in contrast to faith in Christ.
    Various interpretations of this phrase include: "good works, " in the sense of humankind's striving for self-achievement apart from God; observances of Mosaic Law that seek to earn God's favor; and distinctive Jewish identity markers (i.e., circumcision, dietary regulations, and Sabbath observance). Judaism was "nomistic, " observing the Law not as a means of justification but as a response to a gracious God, who Acts on behalf of his people and requires that they in turn identify themselves as his people by keeping his ordinances (covenantal nomism). In this context, the performance of "works of the law" does not refer to an individual's striving for moral improvement, but to a religious mode of existence, marked out by certain religious practices that demonstrate the individual's covenant relationship. Paul's polemical argument in Galatians, however, is concerned with the inherent legalism of the Judaizers, who required Gentile converts to observe Jewish traditions in order to qualify as members of God's covenant people. Thus, when Paul uses erga nomou, he is not just referring to nomistic practices, but to merit-amassing observance of the Law as well.
    The nonattainability of righteousness by keeping the Law is attested to by Paul in Philippians 3:4-9. The works of the Law the apostle was "blameless" in performing actually were hindrances to true righteousness, found only in Christ. Any attempt to justify oneself before God based on meritorious action is counted as "loss" or "refuse." Trusting in one's ability to keep the Law is a reliance on the "flesh" (Php 3:3) and an attempt to establish one's "own righteousness" (Rom 10:3). Thus, the cross of Christ, as the sole basis of justification, becomes an "offense, " because it repudiates any other means of obtaining righteousness (1 Cor 1:23; Gal 5:11; cf. Rom 9:33). (Baker’s Evangelical Dictionary, 1996)


    Curse (3:10, 13) - Are under the curse. The curse which the law of God denounces.
    Having failed by all their efforts to yield perfect obedience, they must, of course, be exposed to the curse which the law denounces on the guilty. The word rendered curse kataran, means, as with us, properly, imprecation or cursing. It is used in the Scriptures
    particularly in the sense of the Hebrew HEBREW--malediction, or execration, Job 31:30; Jer 29:18; Da 9:11; of the word ,HEBREW, Mal 2:2; Pr 3:33; and especially of the common Hebrew word HEBREW--a curse, Ge 27:12-13; De 11:26,28; 23:5; 27:13, et sape al. It is here used evidently in the sense of devoting to punishment or destruction; and the idea is, that all who attempt to secure salvation by the works of the law, must be exposed to its penalty. It denounces a curse on all who do not yield entire obedience; and no partial compliance with its demands can save from the penalty.
    For it is written. The substance of these words is found in De 27:26 "Cursed be he that confirmeth not all the words of this law to do them." It is the solemn close of a series of maledictions which Moses denounces in that chapter on the violators of the law. In this
    quotation, Paul has given the sense of the passage, but he has quoted literally neither from the Hebrew nor from the Septuagint. The sense, however, is retained. The word "cursed" here means, that the violator of the law shall be devoted to punishment or destruction. The phrase, "that continueth not," in the Hebrew is "that confirmeth not"--
    that does not establish or confirm by his life. He would confirm it by continuing to obey it; and thus the sense in Paul and in Moses is substantially the same. The word "all" is not expressed in the Hebrew in Deuteronomy, but it is evidently implied, and has been inserted by the English translators. It is found, however, in six MSS. of Kennicott
    and De Rossi; in the Samaritan text; in the Septuagint; and in several of the Targums. --Clarke. (Albert Barne's Notes on the New Testament, 1840)

    Covenant (3:15, 17; 4:24) - The word "covenant, " infrequently heard in conversation, is quite commonly used in legal, social (marriage), and religious and theological contexts.
    The Idea of Covenant. The term "covenant" is of Latin origin (con venire), meaning a coming together. It presupposes two or more parties who come together to make a contract, agreeing on promises, stipulations, privileges, and responsibilities. In religious and theological circles there has not been agreement on precisely what is to be understood by the biblical term. It is used variously in biblical contexts. In political situations, it can be translated treaty; in a social setting, it means a lifelong friendship agreement; or it can refer to a marriage. (Baker’s Evangelical Dictionary, 1996)

    False brothers {legalists} (2:4) - Who by deceit and counterfeit holiness crept in among the faithful. (Geneva Study Bible Notes, 1560)

    Fruit of the Spirit (5:22) – That which the Holy Spirit produces. It is not without design, evidently, that the apostle uses the word "Spirit" here, as denoting that these things do not flow from our own nature. The vices above enumerated are the proper "works" or result of the operations of the human heart; the virtues which he enumerates are produced by a foreign influence--the agency of the Holy Spirit. Hence Paul does not trace them to our own hearts, even when renewed. He says that they are to be regarded as the proper
    result of the Spirit's operations on the soul. (Albert Barne's Notes on the New Testament, 1840)

    Righteousness (2:21; 3:6, 11, 21; 5:5) – See Justification
    God the Father is righteous (just); Jesus Christ his Son is the Righteous (Just) One; the Father through the Son and in the Spirit gives the gift of righteousness (justice) to repentant sinners for salvation; such believing sinners are declared righteous (just) by the Father through the Son, are made righteous (just) by the Holy Spirit working in them, and will be wholly righteous (just) in the age to come. They are and will be righteous because they are in a covenant relation with the living God, who is the God of all grace and mercy and who will bring to completion what he has begun in them by declaring them righteous for Christ's sake. (Baker’s Evangelical Dictionary, 1996)
     
  3. Clint Kritzer

    Clint Kritzer
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