False spying brothers (Gal. 2:4)

“There were false brothers

Secretly brought in.

They slipped in

To spy

On the freedom

We have in Christ Jesus,

So that they might

Enslave us.”

διὰ δὲ τοὺς παρεισάκτους ψευδαδέλφους, οἵτινες παρεισῆλθον κατασκοπῆσαι τὴν ἐλευθερίαν ἡμῶν ἣν ἔχομεν ἐν Χριστῷ Ἰησοῦ, ἵνα ἡμᾶς καταδουλώσουσιν·

Paul said that there were false brothers (ψευδαδέλφους) secretly brought in (παρεισάκτους).  They slipped in (παρεισῆλθον) to spy (κατασκοπῆσαι) on the freedom (τὴν ἐλευθερίαν ἡμῶν) we have in Christ Jesus (ἣν ἔχομεν ἐν Χριστῷ Ἰησοῦ), so that they might enslave us (ἵνα ἡμᾶς καταδουλώσουσιν).  Only this Galatian letter used this word παρεισάκτους, that means brought in secretly or surreptitiously, and the word κατασκοπῆσαι, that means to view closely or spy out.  Only the Pauline letters used this word ψευδαδέλφους that means a false brother or a pretend Christian, and the word παρεισῆλθον, that means to come in beside or enter secretly, as well as the word ἐλευθερίαν, that means liberty or freedom, as well as the word καταδουλώσουσιν, that means to enslave.  Paul, using unique words, was upset that there were some spies from the circumcision party spying on them, probably to see if they were circumcised.  Paul maintained that they wanted to enslave Paul and his companions back under the Jewish Torah.  Paul said that he was free from the Mosaic law because of Jesus Christ.  There had been a movement to make sure that all those men that were Jewish converts were circumcised.  Paul often referred to them as Judaizers or false brothers.  He did not like them because of their continual harassment of the converted Christian gentiles.  There was no mention of this dispute in Acts, chapter 15, although there was a discussion about the role of circumcision there.  Do you think that people are spying on you?

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