| || |The Berean Expositor Volume 37 - Page 81 of 208 Index | Zoom | |
The apostle, after this most unique addition to the salutation of an epistle, declares this
deliverance to be "according to the will of God and our Father, to Whom be glory for
ever and ever, Amen". There is, in these concluding words, yet one more item that is
unique. The "will of God" is mentioned many times as the originating cause of mercy
and grace but this is the only occasion when the words "and our Father" are added. Does
not the apostle intentionally stress the Fatherhood of God because of the emphasis he is
to place upon "the time appointed by the Father" "the adoption of sons" and the right to
say "Abba, Father" in Ga. 4:?
If the exordium of this epistle contain such evidence of intense feeling and concern,
we shall not be surprised to discover that the epistle itself is full of this burning zeal and
evangelical fervour, and it should be our prayer, that not only may we hold fast to the
Gospel therein displayed, and to the freedom therein so bravely championed, but that we
too may catch something of the spirit of this man of God, and in our day and generation
be prepared not only to "stand" but to "withstand" so that the "truth of the gospel may
continued right through (diameno)".
No "Other" Gospel (1: 6 - 10).
pp. 126 - 129
The introduction of this epistle, with its strange challenge, is followed immediately
and abruptly with the equally strange and challenging words "I marvel". No intervening
words of praise or commendation soften the plunge, the apostle by his very manner
revealing the intensity of his feelings in this great matter. The truth of the Gospel was at
stake (Gal. 2: 5, 14), and the whole of chapter one pivots on the gospel and its
preaching. In the short section before us (Gal. 1: 6-10) the word translated "gospel" and
its derivatives, occur six times: "another gospel" euangelion (6); "the gospel of Christ"
euangelion (7); "preach any other gospel" euangelizo (8 twice and 9); and "an angel
from heaven" angelos (8).
"I marvel that ye are so soon removed from Him that called you into the grace of
Christ unto another gospel" (6).
We may marvel when we see some exhibition of great faith, as did the Saviour
(Matt. 8: 10), or as did the disciples when they saw the Lord's command of the
elements (27). The word is used to express wonder and astonishment at anything
extraordinary, whether at a miracle (Matt. 9: 8, 33), a profound speech (22: 22) or at an
unprecedented occurrence (Mark 5: 20).
This act of marveling may be the accompaniment or outcome of unbelief (Mark 6: 6);
fear (Luke 8: 25); or joy (Luke 24: 41).
Paul was not, evidently, given to
"marveling", for out of forty-six occurrences of the word in the New Testament, Paul is