The Berean Expositor
Volume 38 - Page 86 of 249
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could be no compromise. "That which hath been born of the flesh is flesh, and that
which hath been born of the spirit is spirit", was the utterance of the Lord as recorded by
John, was endorsed by the apostle, and is true to-day in the dispensation of the Mystery.
With this preparation we must for the moment stop, but we shall be the better able to
appreciate the argument of Gal. 3:, since we have seen what "works of law", "hearing
of faith", "flesh" and "spirit", mean in the doctrinal language of the apostle.
No.60. (18) GALATIANS.
Galatians 2: 21 - 3: 7.
The Argument from the ministry of the Spirit (3: 2 - 5).
pp. 134 - 136
We have considered the way in which the apostle refers to the "Spirit" in Galatians,
and have discovered that it is placed in direct contrast with the works both of the flesh
and of the law.
So the Apostle continues in Gal. 3::
"Are ye so thoughtless? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the
flesh?" (Gal. 3: 3).
The same two verbs occur together in another epistle:
"Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun (enarchomai) a good
work in you will perform (epiteleo) it until the day of Jesus Christ" (Phil. 1: 6).
Paul was "confident" that if anything had been "begun" by God, by God it would be
"perfected", and the Galatians were "thoughtless" not to have the same conviction.
Incidentally, should the reader have been troubled by an interpretation put forward to
teach that Paul in Phil. 1: 6 meant by "perfecting" a bringing to an end so that, for the
time being the particular work should discontinue while something else was put into its
place, he now has the corrective in the identical combination in Gal. 3: 3, and should
set the interpretation referred to aside.
A passage almost parallel with Gal. 3: 3 is that of II Cor. 8: 6, where the word
"begun" is proenarchomai "to begin before", while the word "finish" is epiteleo the same
as in Gal. 3: 3 and Phil. 1: 6.
It is not only unreasonable to think that Paul desired Titus to discontinue or bring to an
end the offering of the Corinthian Church, it is contrary to the truth, for in verse eleven he
uses epiteleo again saying "now therefore perform the doing of it . . . . . so that there may
be a performance". The Galatians had "begun in Spirit" and it was illogical to think of