We did not submit to them (Gal. 2:5)

“We did not submit

To their obedience,

Even for a moment,

So that the truth

Of the gospel

Might be preserved

With you.”

οἷς οὐδὲ πρὸς ὥραν εἴξαμεν τῇ ὑποταγῇ, ἵνα ἡ ἀλήθεια τοῦ εὐαγγελίου διαμείνῃ πρὸς ὑμᾶς.

Paul said, “We did not submit to their obedience, even for a moment or day (οἷς οὐδὲ πρὸς ὥραν εἴξαμεν τῇ ὑποταγῇ), so that the truth (ἵνα ἡ ἀλήθεια) of the gospel (τοῦ εὐαγγελίου) might be preserved with you (διαμείνῃ πρὸς ὑμᾶς).”  Only this Galatian letter used this word εἴξαμεν, that means to yield, give way, or submit.  Only the Pauline letters used this word ὑποταγῇ, that means subjection, submission, or obedience.  Paul indicated that he did not obey these spying false brothers even for a day or a moment.  He wanted the gospel truth to be preserved.  Thus, Paul clearly rejected the concept of circumcision for the gentiles as was the conclusion in Acts, chapter 15, 28-29.  There was no mention of circumcision, only that it seemed good (ἔδοξεν γὰρ) to the Holy Spirit (τῷ Πνεύματι τῷ Ἁγίῳ) and to them (καὶ ἡμῖν) to impose (ἐπιτίθεσθαι) on them (ὑμῖν) no further (μηδὲν πλέον) burden (βάρος) except these (πλὴν τούτων) necessary or essential things (ἐπάναγκες).  These deliberations and this letter were guided by the Holy Spirit.  Jesus had promised to give them the Holy Spirit.  Here was the Holy Spirit in action with their discussions and their finished letter.  There were only a few necessary things that they had to do.  They had to abstain (ἀπέχεσθαι) from what had been sacrificed to the idols (εἰδωλοθύτων), from blood (καὶ αἵματος), and from what was strangled (καὶ πνικτῶν), as well as from fornication (καὶ πορνείας).  If they kept (διατηροῦντες) themselves (ἑαυτοὺς) from these things (ἐξ ὧν), they would do well (εὖ πράξετε).  They also had to abstain from unchastity or fornication (καὶ τῆς πορνείας).  This became a pastoral letter to the gentiles.  These were elements from their Jerusalem Judaic background, mostly pertaining to the Mosaic food laws.  Beside sexual immorality or fornication, they were not allowed to eat food presented at idol worship, meat with blood in it, or even blood itself.  These gentiles had to break away from their false idol pagan worship rituals.  They could not eat meat or food consecrated to the pagan idols.  They could not engage in sexual immorality like incest, adultery, homosexuality, and bestiality.  However, there was no mention of circumcision, the heart of the problem with the gentiles, since circumcision was a sign of God’s covenant with Abraham that made people Jewish.  Paul had won the day.  No new Christian would have to submit to circumcision.  Have you ever thought that circumcision was necessary to be a Christian?

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