Lesson Two - Galatians Ch. 1 Part 1


Martin Luther, Commentary on Galatians
Dr. Rod Rosenbladt
Chapter 1 Part 1

1. The Occasion for the Letter

A. Paul had planted the pure doctrine of the Gospel, of the righteousness of faith, among the Galatians.
B. Immediately after his departure, false teachers had crept in, attempted to subvert everything that Paul had taught.
C. Gospel teaches something far more sublime than the wisdom, righteousness, and religion of the world.

2. Vs. 2: “To the churches of Galatia. . .”

A. Paul had preached the Gospel in Galatia, false apostles sneaked in.
B. fanatics in our day come to places where Gospel is established, insinuate themselves
C. godly preachers not only endure persecution, but, after laboring for years planting churches endure seeing it all quickly overthrown by fanatics
D.Jerome asks, “Why does Paul call these ‘churches?’”
E.say this so we may distinguish between “Christian holiness” & all other kinds

3.  Vs. 8: “But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.”

 A. Paul here “breathing fire!” (Luther)
 B. anathema (Gk) & herem (Heb.) both signify a thing accursed, execrable and detestable. (see Josh. 6:17, Lev. 27:28, story of Amalek,  Ex. 17:14)
 C. Luther sums up Paul’s zeal in calling down such curses:
 D. Paul concludes, “There is no other Gospel than the one we preached to you!”

4. Vs. 9 “As we said before, so I now again, if any man is preaching to you a Gospel contrary to that which you received, let him be accursed.  Vs. 10 “Am I now seeking the favor of men, or of God”

 1. with same ardor: “Am I so unknown among you, after preaching publicly in your churches? Are you unaware of my bitter controversies with the Jews?
 2. Paul: Why do they not see that what I teach is from God – not from men? (AE 26: 59)
 3. That I teach divine things is evident also from my preaching the grace, mercy, work, and glory of God alone.

5. Vss. 11, 12 “For I would that you know, brethren, that the Gospel which was preached by me is not man’s Gospel. For I did not receive it from man, nor was I taught it, but by through a revelation of Jesus Christ.”

 1. is the central proposition of this chapter
2. “My Gospel did not come from man. I received it by a revelation of Jesus Christ.”
 3. story of Paul on road to Damascus, later meeting with Ananias
 4. question of justification is an elusive thing (not in itself, but so far as we are concerned,
because we are instable); even I struggle with it in hours of darkness!
 5. argument seems to us strong, cogent
 6. So much for the central proposition.