An in-depth, doctrinal commentary of St. Paul's inspired Letter to the Galatians. This non-academic, theological exposition focuses on text, and not outside concerns. It does try to answer questions not answered or suggested by the text itself. Modern commentaries are pitiful examples of the intrusion of the scientific spirit. This commentary is in the vein of pre-Scientific Revolution commentaries (like Martin Luther's, for example), which also read like sermons and devotions, at times. From the Introduction: Galatians is different from the other epistles of Paul; it is the most passionate and intense of his letters. While it addresses a historical situation, the assumption here is that it is just as relevant and applicable to the people of this day. But the addressees of this letter and their situation do affect the tone and language of this Word of God. While it would be interesting to figure out the specifics of their historical situation, the simple fact is that the Spirit who authored Scripture gave us all that we need to know for salvation---though not enough to satisfy our curiosity. Therefore, we will stick to the words we have been given and not attempt to go behind, around, or under them. The actual scriptural words must be the starting point and foundation for a faithful reading of the text. The Word of God is timeless. We do not have to put ourselves in the place of the ancient Galatians to understand this letter from Paul. The Word of God gives salvation, so it is also addressed to you and all people. So this commentary will not interpret Galatians as a historical document that has to be made relevant, but as the always contemporary Word of God---addressing your problems, issues, and world. This method is not popular among scholars today, but it is what the Scriptures themselves do. This interpretation will stick closely to the words (and their meanings) which comprise this bold and fiery letter on the center of Christianity and the Gospel. This commentary is meant to lead into the text, not out of it. It aims to address what the text actually says, not what scholars or curious people wish it would have said. Unlike modern scholarly commentaries, this is not a strictly exegetical work. It desires to pay careful attention to the original Greek text to explain, apply, sermonize, and provide doctrinal and devotional meat---all at a layman's level. It tries to leave aside issues which the text does not make clear or actually address. Instead, the words of Scripture itself are the guide to how we are to think and do theology. Therefore, this commentary is really meant to be a positive companion and help to an actual study of the text. This commentary requires the biblical text to be open, side-by-side, with it. Since it was originally recorded for a radio program, it is somewhat informal and meant to be easily understood, though theologically meaty enough to challenge. This commentary is organized by verse numbers, with each new verse expected to be read indicated in the text by the bolded verse number, v1], '' for example. This bolded indicator starts the discussion on a new verse. The header on each page has the last chapter and verse discussed on that page for easy reference. Verses quoted from a translation are italicized. Translation of phrases in quotes are my own. Passages cited from an English translation are from the ESV, unless otherwise noted, but any fairly literal translation of Galatians can be used with this guide.
A Doctrinal Exposition of Galatians: A Sermonic Commentary for Laymen
av Philip Hale
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