The Gospel declared by the apostles was by revelation of Jesus Christ. It is a Gospel of pure grace, and any message that excludes grace or mingles legalism with grace as a means of salvation is under the curse of God and is to be shunned.
1 Paul, an apostle, (not of men, neither by man, but by Jesus Christ, and God the Father, who raised him from the dead;)
2 And all the brethren which are with me, unto the churches of Galatia:
3 Grace be to you and peace from God the Father, and from our Lord Jesus Christ,
4 Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father:
5 To whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
6 I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel:
7 Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ.
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.
9 As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.
10 For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men? for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ.
11 But I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man.
12 For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ.
13 For ye have heard of my conversation in time past in the Jews’ religion, how that beyond measure I persecuted the church of God, and wasted it:
14 And profited in the Jews’ religion above many my equals in mine own nation, being more exceedingly zealous of the traditions of my fathers.
15 But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother’s womb, and called me by his grace,
16 To reveal his Son in me, that I might preach him among the heathen; immediately I conferred not with flesh and blood:
17 Neither went I up to Jerusalem to them which were apostles before me; but I went into Arabia, and returned again unto Damascus.
18 Then after three years I went up to Jerusalem to see Peter, and abode with him fifteen days.
19 But other of the apostles saw I none, save James the Lord’s brother.
20 Now the things which I write unto you, behold, before God, I lie not.
21 Afterwards I came into the regions of Syria and Cilicia;
22 And was unknown by face unto the churches of Judaea which were in Christ:
23 But they had heard only, That he which persecuted us in times past now preacheth the faith which once he destroyed.
24 And they glorified God in me.
Galatians 1 Intro – J. Vernon McGee
Galatians 1:1 – J. Vernon McGee
Galatians 1:2-3 – J. Vernon McGee
Galatians 1:4-5 – J. Vernon McGee
Galatians 1:6-7 – J. Vernon McGee
Galatians 1:8-9 – J. Vernon McGee
Galatians 1:10 – J. Vernon McGee
Galatians 1:11-14 – J. Vernon McGee
Galatians 1:15-20 – J. Vernon McGee
Galatians 1:21-24 – J. Vernon McGee
Galatians 1:1-10 – Danger from a Perverted Gospel
Note how strenuously Paul insists upon the genuineness of his call as an Apostle. It had come directly from the lips of Christ. Neither by man, but by Jesus Christ, Galatians 1:1. We who are redeemed have been lifted out of the present age, Galatians 1:4, into the next age, which may soon break forth in manifestation. It is now concealed, but it shall be unveiled. The age which preceded the fall of Jerusalem was notoriously corrupt. Speaking of the Jews at that time, Josephus says that they exceeded Sodom.
The false teachers who dogged Paul’s footsteps suggested that he had only one side of the gospel, and that there was therefore abundant room for their statement of it. But this the Apostle indignantly repudiated, Galatians 1:8. No, he said; there is no gospel other than that which you have heard from my lips. These are solemn questions that each of us should ask: “What has been the effect of the gospel upon my life? Have I been redeemed out of the world that passes away, into that unseen and eternal kingdom of which my Lord is Center and Chief? Do I live according to the will of my God and Father?” Galatians 1:4. —Through the Bible Day by Day
Galatians 1:11-17 – The True Gospel a Revelation
When men belittle the Apostle’s teaching as being purely Pauline, we should recall these strong statements, which attribute his knowledge of the gospel to the direct revelation of the Lord. He received from Christ Himself that which he delivered to the Church. See also Acts 1:2. It was this that made his message authoritative.
What intensity of interest must have gathered for him about Mount Sinai, which doubtless was the objective of his journey into Arabia! Moses and Elijah had been pupils before him in its majestic solitudes. As the Apostle dwelt there, with unlimited opportunity for communion with God, his mind was turned in the direction of that massive system of thought which at once distinguishes his Epistles and connects the New Testament with the Old. It is a profound discovery when God reveals His Son as resident in the believer’s soul. That Christ is in each of us, if we be truly regenerated, is indubitable. See II Corinthians 13:5. But it seems that, in many cases, a veil hides that blessed fact from our consciousness. We need a miracle of grace, similar to that which at the Crucifixion rent the veil in twain, from the top to the bottom, Matthew 27:51. —Through the Bible Day by Day
Galatians 1:15-16—It pleased God… to reveal his Son in me.
If you have truly believed in the Son of God, it is certain that He, by the Spirit, has taken up his abode in your heart. But perhaps He is hidden in the deeps of your nature, as the young Joash in the heart of the Temple. He is, therefore, unable to exert that influence on your inner thought and outward life that He should. Is it not befitting that you should ask the Father to reveal his Son in you? He has been revealed to you as the Divine Substitute, but not in you as the source and spring of holiness,
Beneath the body with its physical existence, and the mind with the play of intellect, lies the spirit of man, like the most holy place in the Temple of old. That is the shrine in which the Shechinah of Christ’s presence shines, and in which we can hold fellowship with Him face to face. Alas, that so heavy a vail of unbelief, of absorption in the world around us, of inattention, hangs between Him and us! Would that the strong hands which rent the vail in twain when our Savior died would rend in twain all that deprives us of this inspiring and most helpful vision of the Son, so that we might anticipate the eternal years!
But such revelations are only given that we may better help others. Not for selfish enjoyment, but for ministering help. Hence the apostle says, “that I might preach him among the heathen.” Be pleased, O Father, to give us that revelation, that we may speak as those who have seen the great sight, and need no further conference with flesh and blood! Then, like the apostles of old, we shall go forth among men, saying, “We cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard” (Acts 4:20). —Our Daily Homily
Galatians 1:18-24 – From Christ, not from Men
Paul’s first visit to Peter must have been of absorbing interest. Doubtless the two traversed together the holy scenes of the Lord’s ministry, and Peter told the story of Gethsemane and Calvary with minute detail to ears that drank in every circumstance. How many inquiries would be addressed to the eyewitness of that sacred death and of the open grave! Paul was not ignorant of the facts, but wished to view them in the new light of faith and love. Such conversation as that which occupied these two souls gives us a glimpse of what may be expected when God’s people are gathered into the many mansions of the Father’s house.
The sudden termination of this visit to Jerusalem is described in Acts 9:28. Without delay Paul had to leave the city and start for his home in distant Tarsus, where he was to spend two or three years until the good Barnabas came to summon him to help in Antioch. See Acts 11:25-26. Probably during this interval the Apostle began to evangelize the regions named in Galatians 1:21. Let us see to it that we receive no glory from man, but that men see God in us and us in God. We are nothing; He is all, and to Him be the glory, Psalm 115:1. —Through the Bible Day by Day