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Bible Commentaries

Abbott's Illustrated New Testament

Galatians 2



Verse 1

Fourteen years after. In Acts 11:29,30, a journey of Paul to Jerusalem is mentioned, and also another in Acts 15:1-4. The latter has been generally supposed by commentators to be the one here referred to.

Verse 2

By revelation; under divine guidance. He did not go to seek direction from the apostles at Jerusalem.--Them which were of reputation. James, Peter, and John, are particularly mentioned, Galatians 2:9.

Verse 3

Titus is often alluded to by Paul in his Epistles, though he is not mentioned in the Acts. He appears, like Timothy, to have been made a convert through Paul's instrumentality, and both afterwards became efficient and devoted fellow-laborers with the apostle.--Neither Titus--was compelled; that is, he did not allow him to be compelled. Paul caused Timothy to be circumcised, (Acts 16:3,) his mother being a Jewess, but he would not allow Titus to be. He thus practised according to the principles which he always enjoined, yielding to Jewish feelings so far as it was proper to do so, and resisting only when resistance was necessary in vindication of the truth. The reason why he would not allow Titus to be made a Jew is stated in the Galatians 2:4,5.

Verse 4

Into bondage: to the Jewish law.

Verse 5

Might continue with you; might be maintained among the churches.

Verse 6

Added nothing; gave me no new light on the principles of Christianity.

Verse 7

We are to understand by this, not that such a division was officially made, giving Peter and Paul respectively the exclusive charge of the two great departments here referred to, but only that, in the course of divine providence, Paul had been led to preach more among the Gentile nations, and Peter more among the Jews. That the work of bringing the Gentiles into the kingdom of Christ was not wholly assigned to Paul, is evident from the fact that Peter was the instrument of their first admission. (Acts 10:1-48:)

Verse 10

The poor; the poor brethren in Judea. This charge Paul did not forget. He long afterwards raised contributions for them in Macedonia and Achaia. See 2 Corinthians 9:1-15: and note to v. 15.

Verse 11

Was come to Antioch; had come, and was residing there.

Verse 12

From James; who was at Jerusalem.--Then which were of the circumcision; that those who had come from Jerusalem.

Verse 14

Walked not uprightly; did not act honestly and openly. Some suppose that Paul's address to Peter ends with this verse; others regard it as extending to the end of the chapter.

Verse 15

By nature; by birth.

Verse 17

Is--Christ the Minister of sin? does the gospel promote and encourage sin? The apostle here distresses from his main subject of discussion to answer this objection.

Verse 18

If I build again, &c.; if I return again to the sins which I had abandoned. The argument would seem to be that, although the Christian depends on faith in Christ, and not on legal observances, for salvation, yet he fully renounces all sin when he unites himself to Christ, and the guilt and the responsibility are altogether his own, if he return to sin again.

Verse 20

Christ liveth in me; Christ supplies me with that spiritual life, which both disposes and enables me to keep the divine law; thus showing that he is not the minister of sin. (Galatians 2:17.)


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Bibliography Information
Abbott, John S. C. & Abbott, Jacob. "Commentary on Galatians 2:4". "Abbott's Illustrated New Testament". 1878.

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