Often, Paul asked someone to write his letters for him. But Paul liked to write the end of each letter himself. He used the end of this letter to repeat his most important lesson. He wanted the Christians in Galatia to understand this very clearly. Perhaps that is why he used large letters here. Or perhaps that was how he always wrote.
The problem in Galatia
Some teachers in Galatia wanted to *circumcise the male Christians there. Paul told the Christians that they should not agree. The mark itself did not really matter. But these teachers had several wrong ideas. The teachers wanted to *circumcise Christians for several reasons. But all these reasons were wrong:
(1) Those teachers wanted people to make themselves *righteous. The teachers said that, to do this, a person must obey Godís rules. But really, this is impossible. People cannot make themselves *righteous. Only God can make a person *righteous. He does that when a person believes his promise. And God does it by his *Holy Spirit.
(2) The human body mattered too much to those teachers. But the nature of a body is that it must die. Its end is death. But God wanted to change peopleís *spirits, so that they will always be alive. God does this by his *Holy Spirit.
(3) Those teachers wanted to have authority over peopleís lives. So they told the Christians that they must obey the *Jewish rules. Really, they were trying to make themselves important. But God should have authority over Christiansí lives. God shows them the things that they should do by his *Holy Spirit.
(4) Those teachers were afraid that people would be cruel to them. Many people were against the Christians. Those people included some *Jews. The teachers wanted to make those *Jews happy. So they taught Christians that God wanted them to obey *Jewish rules. But this would mean that Christís death was not really important. Paul showed that Christís death is very important. Christians should not be ashamed about Christís death. They should not be afraid if people are cruel to them. People might even kill them, but life in this world is not really important. The life that Godís *Holy Spirit gives is really important. He gives that life to a personís *spirit. And that life has no end.
God is making everything new
Paul knew something better. God is making everything new by his *Holy Spirit. He has begun in the lives and *spirits of the people who believe him. Because of Christís death, he has changed their lives. This old world, and the things in it, do not really matter. God will change everything; he is making a new world.
Because of Christís death, God is doing all that he has promised
All this is happening because Christ died. That was the most important event ever. People who are not really Christians cannot believe that. But everything that God has promised becomes possible because of that one event. He has promised to save completely those people who believe him. He has promised to make them free from the wrong things that rule their lives. He has promised the end of their troubles. He has promised that they will be his sons and daughters. He has promised to give them a home that is completely good. And they will always live with him.
Next part: The end of Paulís letter
See the word list for explanation of words with a *
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© 2015, Keith Simons.