Galatians 2:1-14. Jesus Christ has built his Church on Peter, and Paul was a young apostle.

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God the Father imparted knowledge, wisdom, and grace to Jesus Christ, and Jesus Christ to his disciples.

 

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Paul was a zealous Pharisee, knew scriptures thoroughly from Judaism. He was persecuting the church.

1. The word of God exposes the mistakes of, even God's own servants.

The second chapter of Galatians is the most difficult scripture to explain. God might have crippled the wisdom of an apostle, exposed the bias of a servant, turned his mistakes into stumbling stones for false preachers to fall, proved that God is most righteous, puzzled scholars among preachers and theologians, and revealed his mysteries and wisdom. So, bear with me. The word of God is truth. Even when the servants of God make mistakes, God will mention their mistakes and expose them also in his word. God mentions equally their good deeds as well as their bad deeds. So, his word is truth. For an example, he reveals prophets Balac and Jonah when they did not obey God in the way God wanted them to obey. God says that David is the man of his own heart, and yet when David committed sins, God exposed him and punished him for his sins. In the same way, in the new testament, when apostle Paul shows his bias and his attitude, God exposes him, by his own pen. And made his same verses to work as stumbling stones for the false preachers, and they stumble on them and fall. And those who do not love the truth of God also fall with them. So, it is important for us to know the truth of God. Let us study some of them here and now.

2. Jesus Christ made apostle Peter as a rock and built his Church on him.

"Matthew 16:17 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven." So, it is initiated by God the Father. "18 And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it." Then Jesus says that Peter was the rock, and Jesus will build his Church on Peter the rock. It is very clear that it was the man Peter. Present-day theologians and preachers are very much annoyed, thinking that Jesus has made a grievous mistake, and they try their best to save Jesus from this calamity. So, they want to throw Peter to the dust and to put Jesus Christ in his place. Knowing this Jesus Christ also said, "the gates of hell shall not prevail against it." So, Jesus Christ has referred these theologians and preachers as 'the gates of hell', and they will not win. More than 90% of theologians and preachers are trying, but what Jesus Christ has done, it is done. "19 And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven." These are mindboggling, unbelievable power and authority that is given to a man, and Jesus Christ gave this power to apostle Peter. Later, he gave such power to the true Spiritual Church also. The unbelieving preachers, who are the gates of hell, are not able to bear it. If God does not reveal his word by his Spirit, it will be hard even for us to accept. So, theologians fight it with tooth and nails to void and to destroy the authority that Jesus Christ gave to apostle Peter, and to nullify it. But Jesus Christ said that they "shall not prevail against it." So, the churches of both Jews and Gentiles, were built by Peter. The references of the Jews joining the church is on Acts 2:36-47 and of the Gentiles joining the church is on Acts chapters 10, 11 & 15. Let us see a few verses: "Acts 2:38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. So, it was by Peter. Peter initiated it, God built upon it, and the church of the Jews began. Verse 47 says ... And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.... This is about the church of the Jews. But how about the church of the Gentiles? Acts 15:7 And when there had been much disputing, Peter rose up, and said unto them, Men and brethren, ye know how that a good while ago God made choice among us, that the Gentiles by my mouth should hear the word of the gospel, and believe." It is again by Peter. So, according to Jesus Christ, God used apostle Peter to begin and establish the Gentile church also. When problems came in the Gentile church, they came to Jerusalem and to Peter. But almost all present-day churches are still trying to throw Peter down from the position that Jesus Christ had placed him in. They do it in a sleek hypocritical way. They try to replace him with Jesus Christ to convince and to fool Christians. As Jesus Christ says, "the gates of hell shall not prevail against it." Theologians even preach that Paul is the apostle to the Gentiles, and so, we must listen to Paul even over Jesus Christ. Paul, as a young rising star as an apostle, seeing that Jews hate him, trying to gain grounds with Gentiles. In Paul's mind, he was eloquent in scriptures, but Peter was just a fisher man with no knowledge of scriptures. But he failed to realize that Peter has learned scriptures from Jesus Christ. Paul was made an apostle by the revelation of Jesus Christ. Peter was ordained by Jesus Christ in person, over His Church, and to feed his lambs and sheep.

3. Apostle Paul was a Scholar in scriptures in his time and was zealous for God.

Apostle Paul was a devout Pharisee, who was very zealous in Judaism. He did what all he could do to destroy the church. One day on his way to Damascus, the Lord Jesus Christ shined his light on him, and he fell. It is in Acts 9:1-22. "Acts 9:17 And Ananias went his way, and entered into the house; and putting his hands on him said, Brother Saul, the Lord, even Jesus, that appeared unto thee in the way as thou camest, hath sent me, that thou mightest receive thy sight, and be filled with the Holy Ghost. 18 And immediately there fell from his eyes as it had been scales: and he received sight forthwith, and arose, and was baptized. 19 And when he had received meat, he was strengthened. Then was Saul certain days with the disciples which were at Damascus. 20 And straightway he preached Christ in the synagogues, that he is the Son of God." He was converted, healed from being blind, baptized in water, received the Holy Ghost baptism, got strength in few days, and immediately he began to preach Jesus Christ. So, Paul was preaching the gospel from day one. But, he did not have the maturity as Peter. Paul was a learned Pharisee from Judaism, whereas Peter learned the word of God from Jesus Christ himself. So, there are many differences between Peter and Paul. Jesus Christ built his church and appointed Peter as the head. God made Paul also as an apostle, but he had to grow to maturity. Paul was a young apostle. But Peter was a veteran apostle long before the Church was formed. Present day theologians are the same as the scribes and Pharisees of the old testament. They follow scriptures ceremonially, but not by their life. God has rejected them as he has rejected the old testament scribes and Pharisees. Theologians are not godly, but they are religious, and they are of another Jesus.

4. Apostle Paul was young, raised himself as single, without other apostles.

"Galatians 2:1 Then fourteen years after I went up again to Jerusalem with Barnabas, and took Titus with me also." It was fourteen years after his conversion. Barnabas, who became an apostle also, was supporting him even from the beginning. Titus was a sincere helper to him, and he was a Greek. Apostle Paul wants to be a 'lone ranger', a single-handed hero. If you notice, Paul being a highly educated scholar in scripture, had a bias against the uneducated group of apostles. He considered himself superior to apostle Peter. It is not hard to see it from the tone of his language. But Jesus Christ himself was building the Church on Peter, it began with Jews first, and now it was happening with gentiles. It is in Acts 15:1-12. Let us see just two verses. "Acts 15:1 And certain men which came down from Judaea taught the brethren, and said, Except ye be circumcised after the manner of Moses, ye cannot be saved. 2 When therefore Paul and Barnabas had no small dissension and disputation with them, they determined that Paul and Barnabas, and certain other of them, should go up to Jerusalem unto the apostles and elders about this question." Here, Paul did not go to Jerusalem by his own decision, but the church or the Assembly determined that Paul and Barnabas must go to Jerusalem to get the verdict for this important matter. It proves that Peter and those apostles in Jerusalem were the authority, and Paul was under them whether he liked it or not. "Galatians 2:2 And I went up by revelation, and communicated unto them that gospel which I preach among the Gentiles, but privately to them which were of reputation, lest by any means I should run, or had run, in vain." Paul had a concern that the doctrine he preached should not be rejected, so, in a way he admits that he was under Jerusalem apostles, or rather under Peter, as the Lord Jesus Christ has placed him in. Peter, including those apostles in Jerusalem, were the authority to decide even the doctrinal matters.

5. Jesus Christ and apostles have made void all ceremonial laws and such.

"Galatians 2:3 But neither Titus, who was with me, being a Greek, was compelled to be circumcised:" Jerusalem council of apostles did not force anyone to circumcise. "4 And that because of false brethren unawares brought in, who came in privily to spy out our liberty which we have in Christ Jesus, that they might bring us into bondage: 5 To whom we gave place by subjection, no, not for an hour; that the truth of the gospel might continue with you." It was a plot of some Judaic converts to bring circumcision into the Church, and it was not accepted by the apostles. In the next verse, you will see a bias attitude in the heart of apostle Paul against Jerusalem apostles, which shows that Paul was still young and was not yet a matured apostle of God. "6 But of these who seemed to be somewhat, (whatsoever they were, it maketh no matter to me: God accepteth no man's person:) for they who seemed to be somewhat in conference added nothing to me:" Look at the sentence; Paul had no respect or regard for the apostles in Jerusalem. However, even by this verse, God revealed that God is not a respecter of persons, all people are his creation, and there is no difference between Jews and Gentiles for salvation and eternal life. See, God shows that Paul must grow, and at the same time, reveals God's mystery also by him.

6. Preaching of the Gospel is not an inheritance from the Father to two Sons.

"7 But contrariwise, when they saw that the gospel of the uncircumcision was committed unto me, as the gospel of the circumcision was unto Peter; 8 (For he that wrought effectually in Peter to the apostleship of the circumcision, the same was mighty in me toward the Gentiles:)." Jesus Christ told all his apostles to preach the gospel to every creature in the world. Preaching the gospel is not like dividing an inheritance. "9 And when James, Cephas, and John, who seemed to be pillars, perceived the grace that was given unto me, they gave to me and Barnabas the right hands of fellowship; that we should go unto the heathen, and they unto the circumcision." Paul drew Peter, John, and James also in it. As I have mentioned in the beginning, the word of God exposes even God's own servants, if they make mistakes; and in this case, it is exposed or reported by the rooky apostle himself, who is Paul. Why did Paul make such a mistake? Probably he may be proud and jealous. Another reason could be, that God is using it as stumbling stones for the false preachers to fall. False preachers follow neither the teaching of Jesus Christ, nor the wholesome word of God. So, they will stumble and fall by the stumbling stone message of Paul. "10 Only they would that we should remember the poor; the same which I also was forward to do." Every apostle has the concern to remember the poor believers.

7. Was the Chief Apostle, who was appointed by Jesus Christ, found guilty?

"11 But when Peter was come to Antioch, I withstood him to the face, because he was to be blamed." Here, apostle Paul was condemning apostle Peter as guilty. That is, the youngest of all apostles condemns the chief apostle. It seems out of place. However, let us see the crime that was committed. "12 For before that certain came from James, he did eat with the Gentiles: but when they were come, he withdrew and separated himself, fearing them which were of the circumcision. 13 And the other Jews dissembled likewise with him; insomuch that Barnabas also was carried away with their dissimulation." According to Paul, the crime was that apostle Peter ate with Gentiles before, but when Jews came, he went with Jews to eat, and Paul assumes that Peter was afraid of the Jews. Paul thinks that Peter must have eaten with the Gentiles. Here, did Peter commit a crime? "14 But when I saw that they walked not uprightly according to the truth of the gospel, I said unto Peter before them all, If thou, being a Jew, livest after the manner of Gentiles, and not as do the Jews, why compellest thou the Gentiles to live as do the Jews?" Look at it; apostle Paul says that it is against the truth of the gospel! What is the truth of the gospel? It is an outright blind accusation. Even though Paul behaved immature and foolish, God made it a snare, trap, and stumbling block, for the false preachers to fall. Almost all theologians and false preachers fell into this and run with it aimlessly. By this, we will know who they are. It seems to be a confusing chapter. But, if we study this in the light of the teachings of Jesus Christ and with the wholesome word of God, there are a few important things for us to learn from this chapter, and about the stumbling stones of God. However, when Paul grows to be a mature apostle, he writes in 1 Timothy 5:19, "Against an elder receive not an accusation, but before two or three witnesses." When Paul was young, he accused the chief of apostles with no base. Now, he does not want to accuse even an elder, without proof. Paul became a mature apostle now.

If any point needs explanation, OR, if you find an error according to scripture,
Please write to me in the 'Mail Box' below. I will reply promptly.
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I am a retired pastor of the Church of God (Tennessee).
My name is Isaac Livingston. I am from Neyyoor India
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