Galatians 1:1-5 Study Guide
Main Idea: God the Father initiates our salvation, and God the Son accomplishes our salvation
Overview: In this section, Paul seeks to establish his apostolic authority by claiming that it was given to him through Jesus Christ, whose resurrection from the dead proves his claim to be the son of God. After establishing his authority, he provides a summary of the gospel message and how the free gift of the gospel glorifies God.
Observation and Interpretation:
- Read Paul’s greetings in Ephesians, Philippians, 1 Corinthians, and compare it to Paul’s greeting in Galatians. What does Paul leave out in his greeting to the Galatians? What does this reveal about Paul’s tone towards the Galatians?
- Where does Paul receive his authority? Why is this important?
- In Galatians 1:3-5, Paul provides a brief summary of the gospel. Who is performing what action? Why is he performing the action? What are the results of these actions?
- Paul ends by referring to the glory of God. How does Paul’s description of the gospel in the previous verses result in God being glorified? How does a distortion of this message become an attack on God’s glory?
- Paul is writing to a group of Christians that are tempted to believe that their salvation is based on their works. What are some ways that you fall into a legalistic (performance-based) mindset?
- The Galatians have undercut the authority of Paul by listening and being persuaded by other teachers and their “attractive” gospel. What are some ways that we are tempted to modify (to add to or take away) from the Word of God in order to make it less authoritative and more “attractive”?
- Paul claims that our salvation is the work of God from start to finish. How does this inform the way we counsel our brothers and sisters or how we share the gospel with our neighbors?
Prayer Point: Spend some time in prayer thanking God that salvation is a gift based on His work and not your own.