This blog began as an attempt to make available to others some resources that I’d been involved in making, especially those that had a relatively high holy-sweat to beneficiary ratio the first time around. I’m currently leading a very small group in which exactly one participant really, really likes some concrete guidance as she prepares throughout the week for our Bible study. Now, I’ve been to seminary and you would think I would have some great stuff like that readymade and at my disposal. And I’m sure I do somewhere. In my library in storage on another continent. In a database I think I could still access if I could remember the password. Or my username. On some software on a bricked laptop. You get the picture. So these are for Marion, and – by the power of WordPress – for you, if they’re useful to you. They’re not so original that you should hesitate to bounce off them free-style and make them your own, but they’re original enough that if you are going print them off and hand them around to your own small group you should put my name and a link to this post at the bottom of the page. In teeny tiny print at least. Because you don’t want to go into this study with anything on your conscience – Paul’s in a mood. Enjoy. by Rich Wyld at theologygrams.wordpress.com
First reading: Read Galatians 1. What word, phrase, or verse stands out to you? Does it bring up a question? Speak to a question you’ve been having? Just resonate somehow? Is it confusing? Disturbing? Comforting? Make a note of it. Hold onto it prayerfully and see if it makes more sense to you at the end of this study.
Comprehension & Reflection: Read the chapter again, answering the following:
Who is writing and to whom?
What is an apostle?
How does Paul describe Christ’s work in verse 4?
What does he seem to consider his own work to be?
What has happened to occasion this letter?
What does “gospel” mean?
Paul doesn’t articulate this “different gospel” in this chapter. What can you guess about it based on what he does say?
According to this chapter, what are valid sources of the “gospel” and what are not?
What “traditions” do you think Paul is referring to in verse 14?
What credentials and details of his own life story does Paul present and why does he do so?
What misinformation does he seem to be trying to correct?
What dichotomies does Paul establish in this chapter?
What is the overall tone of this chapter?
Is the issue of “different gospels” still relevant for us today?
FOR ADDITIONAL STUDY/ CONTEXT:
- Where else in the Bible can we read about the churches or region of Galatia? Do these passages offer any further insight into Paul’s audience?
- Compare the salutation at the beginning of this epistle to some others. What similarities and differences do you notice?
- Compare Paul’s account of his travels with those in Acts.
- What additional information can you find about the historical background and setting of this letter?
- What other passages can you find dealing with teachings contrary to the gospel? How are they defined, described, etc.? What consequences, warnings, and instructions are issued relating to them?
Click here for chapter 2