Unlocking Galatians Hebraically – Part 2

Galatians 2. Using the Scripture as the dictionary for the scripture prevents theorizing and surmising what the ‘law’ and ‘separation’ in Gal. 2 is all about!  Eph. 2:11 explains succinctly the context of Galatians 2.

10 simple points:

  1. “Therefore remember you were once called Gentiles in the flesh…
  2. who were called uncircumcision (akrobustia – tossed away foreskins – 10 Israel) by what is called the Circumcision made in the flesh by hands…
  3. that at the time you were without Moshiach…
  4. aliens from the commonwealth of Israel and…
  5. strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope and without Elohim in the world. But now in Moshiach Yahusha you who…
  6. once were far off (tossed away) have been…
  7. brought near by the blood of Moshiach.(ratified BoC)…
  8. For He Himself is our peace, who has made both one, and has broken down the middle wall of separation, (no divided nation, no divided priesthood, no divided temple)….
  9. Having abolished in His flesh the the enimity, that is the law (Book of the Law) of commandments contained in ordinances (not covenant)…
  10. So as to create in Himself one ‘new man’ from the two (book of the law and book of the covenant).

Then fourteen years after I went up to Yahrushalayim with Bar-Nava and took Teitus with me also.

Is this fourteen years after Shaul’s three year period in Saudi Arabia (a) (2 Cor. 12:2), or fourteen years including the three year period (b) – it has been much debated and can affect your reading of the Book of Acts as to whether this Jerusalem visit is Acts 15 or not!

I believe the text leans more heavily toward (a) this is fourteen years after Shaul’s three year period in Arabia (1:17), he then went up to Jerusalem for the first time to meet with Kepha and Yaakov (1:18)  and here (2:1) is written before Shaul’s first missionary journey (Acts 13/14) but BEFORE the Jerusalem Council of Acts 15 making this journey to Jerusalem (v.1)  the one spoken of in Acts 11.

P.172 of Avi ben Mordechai’s book the title “Two Torah’s”. Hebrew Roots takes no issue with this;  because Avi is juxtaposing Oral Torah vs. Written Torah, what all fail to grasp is that though, yes, it tugs our observant heart strings it’s pure theory, speculative;  with no text in existence that supports it. There is no Hebrew Minhag, Takanot, Gezerot or Ma’asim or it’s Greek equivalent in any New Testament texts.

2 And I went up by Sod-revelation, and communicated to them concerning the Besorah that I proclaim among the nations, but privately to them who were of tov reputation, lest by any means I should labor, or had labored in vain.

Circumcision and the Book of the Law had become the nationalistic boundary marker ever since the Seleucid Invasion (1. Mac.).

Shual was restoring the covenant’s of promise and Yahusha’s blood ratification as the nationalistic boundary markers – Gen. 12!

3 But neither Teitus, who was with me, being an Aramean, was compelled to be circumcised immediately.

4 And because of false Israelite brothers who had sneaked in, and who came in to secretly spy out our liberty that we have in the Moshiach Yahusha, that they might bring us into slavery.

‘Pseudadelphos’ (pseudo) false. Like unto day, ‘sham believers.’ We call them The Synagogue of Satan.

‘Kataskopeo’ – ‘sneaked in’ they gate crashed into the private meeting between Shaul and the Jerusalem leaders, causing problems and pushing an agenda.

What is the ‘eleutheria’ ‘liberty’ that Shaul speaks of if it’s not liberty from the Law of Moses as a whole,  as the Institutionalized Church errantly teaches.

We’re at ‘liberty’ from the Book of the Law because Yahusha’s blood has ratified the New Covenant (given as Torah Jer. 31:31, Heb. 8:6). Not at liberty to lawlessness, heaven forbid but at liberty to Covenant Torah!

Slavery – ‘katadouloo’ – to reduce to slavery, enslave. LXX Ex. 1:14 Israel’s slavery in Egypt.

5.To whom we gave no place by yielding in submission to them no, not even for an hour, that the emet of the Besorah might remain among you.

6 But of those who were considered to be somewhat important-whatever they were, it makes no difference to me. YHWH accepts no man’s person – for those who seemed to be somewhat important added nothing additional, or new to me.

Shaul isn’t disparaging the Twelve with this remark, he’s just communicating that he has been given the full revelation of the BoL – BoC dichotomy as how it relates to circumcision and the reunification of the nation.

7 But on the contrary, when they saw that the Besorah of the akrobustia (tossed away foreskins 10 Israel) was committed to me, as was the Besorah to the Brit-Milah to Kepha.

8 For He that worked vigorously in Kepha for his calling as a sholiach to the brit milah, the same One was mighty in me toward the nations.

9 And when Yaakov, Kepha and Yochanan, who seemed to be pillars,

perceived the unmerited favor that was given to me , they gave to me and Bar-Nava the right hand of chavurah, that we should go to the nations, and they to the brit-milah.

10 Only they desired that we should remember the poor, the same mitzvah which I also was eager to do.

11 But when Kepha had come to Antioch, I withstood him to his face, because he was at fault.

We need to look at the textual, social and historical-political climate among the Jewish communities.

  • A Roman becoming circumcised would be ana-thema to his people.
  • Caligula had insisted that a statue of himself be set up in the Jerusalem Temple (40CE)
  • The nationalism surrounding circumcision had its roots in the Maccabean era.
  • The vestments of the Levitical High Priest were kept for safekeeping by the Romans.
  • Gentiles had to be circumcised to be able to enter a certain locale on pain of death.
  • Proselyte conversion was the only acceptable entry point into the assembly of Israel.
  • Jews didn’t eat, or go to the place of those from the nations.

All of this was allowed and condoned under the Book of the Law aristocracy; yet it was in contradiction to the Divine mandate of the Book of the Covenant promise to Abraham, Gen. 12:3 “all peoples on earth shall be blessed through you.”

12 For certain men came from Yaakov, (‘elthein tinasa apo lakabou’) It doesn’t necessarily mean they were actually from Yaakov, they were just associated with Yaakov in some way, or more likely,  just claimed they came from Yaakov! 

he did eat with the peoples, but when they had come he withdrew and separated himself.. (‘hupestellen’ ‘began to withdraw’)

Kepha was gradually withdrawing.

The verb ‘aphorizo’ sums it up nicely, “to remove one party from other parties so as to discourage or eliminate contact.”

… fearing them that were from the Yahudim in Yahrushalayim. And the other Yahudim joined with him in his hypocrisy, so that even Bar-Nava was led astray with their hypocrisy.

The issue specifically is one of eating food prepared by uncircumcised Israelites, Israelites who were not following the Jewish Book of the Law interpretation in regard to circumcision, thus they were deemed still to be unclean and sinners, unfit for table-fellowship! 

Kepha caved to peer pressure from the Book of the Law club coming down from Jerusalem.

Shaul was rebuking Kepha for his hypocrisy. He had been accepting these uncircumcised according to the Book of the Covenant Torah until some Jewish traditionalist’s came down and placed peer pressure on him to withdraw from table-fellowship (Acts 10:28 shows Kepha already had a history of interpreting the Book of the Law in a traditionalist fashion, “it’s unlawful for a Jewish man to keep company with or go to one of another nation, but Elohim has shown me that I shouldn’t call any man common or unclean.”) Torah doesn’t teach this!

The Galatian community was being welcomed back into a blood ratified covenant given as Torah (Heb 8:6) coming just as they were, whereas the Jerusalemites were still vacillating between maintaining the exclusivity in regards to national entry of the Book of the Law and the liberty granting covenant status in a blood ratified Book of the Covenant.

By being a ‘Prush’– – a ‘Pharisee’ a ‘separatist’  from his exiled Israelite brothers in Antioch, Kepha stood self-condemned because he violated the very gospel he was espousing, the gospel he proclaimed to Cornelius!

Just as Moshe opposed Pharoah (Ex. 8:20) who wanted to enslave Israel, Shual opposed Kepha who’s backsliding would also enslave Israel!

Because as believers our tables aren’t to be full of vomit: Ps. 106:28, for all tables are full of vomit and filthiness if they are without Elohim.

For true table fellowship to prevail it must be focused on YHWH, both in consumption and conversation!

The sharing of a common meal is critical for sharing good faith and community.

14 But when I saw that they walked not uprightly according to the emet of the Besorah, I said to Kepha in front of them all, If you being a Yahudi in the Light live like the Arameans in the darkness and not as do the Yahudim, why do you compel the peoples in darkness to live as do the Yahudim in the light? (‘pos ta ethane’ anagkazien ioudaizein’ ‘why do you compel the nations to Judaize’).

LXX Est. 8:17 context is ‘Gentiles were circumcised and became Jews, for fear of the Jews.’ Kepha’s behavior was a vexing, separatist behavior that if left to run it’s course unchallenged;  would push Gentiles in Judaic proselyte conversion and a return to the BoL. Gk. “Ioudaizo” – Heb. “yahad” “to pose as a Jew” We keep running into this Synagogue of Satan influence!

Kepha’s behavior and actions, though he was a Jew, were more consistent with the ‘sinners,’ the gentiles!

15 For we who are from the Yahudi by nature are not from the peoples, the sinners.

16 Knowing that a man is not ever declared right by the works of the law, but by the emunah in Yahusha Ha Moshiach, Moshiach, even we who have believed in Yahusha Ha Moshiach , that we might be declared tzadik by the emunah in Moshiach, and not by the works of the law for by works of law shall no flesh ever be declared tzadik.

‘Works of Law ’- ‘ergon nomou’ three times in Galatians 2:16 for a total of six times in Galatians ( 3:2, 5, 10) and Romiya 3:20, 28.

You’ve got to be outraged by the NIV and NEB translation based upon NO text in on planet earth, NIV ‘Knowing that a man is not ever declared right by observing the law’. NEB Knowing that a man is not ever declared right by doing what the law dernands.’

Oh, it’s ‘New’ all right, its brand spanking ‘New’ …it’s not even there!

‘Works of the Law’ ‘ergon nomou’, 4 interpretations:

  1. Institutionalized Church interpretation – keeping the Law of Moses or any customs and commands therein.
  2. Messianic Interpretation – trying to attain justification by keeping the law of Moses. This doesn’t mean we don’t keep the Law of Moses but we just rightly apply it (which they never do).
  3. Karaite Messianic Interpretation (Avi ben Mordechai) Oral Law, traditions of the rabbis and elders.
  4. Melchizedek – Works of the law is the labor of the Book of the Law (3:10) as opposed to the rest of the Newly blood ratified and covenant inclusion -the Book of the Covenant Torah community (4:21)

‘Works of law’ isn’t speaking so much about obedience to Elohim, as the Institutionalized Church falls prey interpreting it as, as much as it speaks of how a group or sect follow, divide and interpret His law as appropriate to the dynamics of their faith.

DSS Mss. 4QMMT uses ‘Ma’asei ha Torah’ the Hebrew equivalent of ‘ergon nomou’ to define rules of conduct and inclusion into the DSS community based upon their interpretation of the Book of the Law, Deuteromomy in particular with 25 copies.

Based upon Gal 3:10, 4:16 and Dss 4QMMT, and the more than 25 copies of the Book of Law unearthed at Qumran the evidence that ‘ergon nomou’ ‘Ma’asei ha Torah’ ‘works of law’ is identifiable as the Book of the Law is unequivocal.

Shaul is criticizing a sectarian observance of the Book of the Law that impedes the mission of blessing, the BoC blessing of Abraham to all nations, 

We see today how ‘ergon nomou’ manifests itself in the Messianic Movement at large; boundary markers based upon a sectarian interpretation of the BoL that clearly distinguishes those on the inside from others on the outside.

Sectarian interpretations of the BoL that clearly distinguishes those on the in from those on the out.

Applying the Book of the Law in a certain way that breeds exclusivity and spirit of religious judgmentalism.

This is a custom that keeps people out of YHWH’s community rather than welcoming them in. Inappropriately applying the BoL to restrict membership in the people of Elohim the Israel of Elohim (Gal 6:16).

This has nothing to do with the Sabbath, dietary requirements, Feasts of YHWH which are for us and part of BoC Torah today!

17 But if, while we seek to be declared tzadik by Moshiach, we ourselves also are found to sinners, is therefore Moshiach now an Eved of the sin in our lives? Let it never be!

18 For if I build again the things that I destroyed, I make myself a transgressor,

19 For I through the law, am dead to the law that I might live to YHWH.

20 I am crucified with Moshiach, nevertheless I live, yet not I, but Moshiach lives in me, and the chayim which I now live in the flesh I live by the emunah of the Son of YHWH who loved me, and gave Himself for me.

21 I do not frustrate the unmerited favor of YHWH, for if righteousness came by the law (Book of the Law), then Moshiach has died in vain.

Unlocking Galatians Hebraically – Intro

Galatians is a polemic addressing the Book of the Law and Book of the Covenant dichotomy. The Book of the law – ‘the law – is not of faith’ (Galatians 3:10-12), the Book of Covenant – Covenants of Promise are by faith!

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Unlocking Galatians Hebraically – Part 1

What is the “different gospel” of Galatians 1:6? What is the law that brings a curse to believers in Yahusha that is being spoken of? Written law? Oral law? Roman law? What are the two covenants singled out in Gal. 4:21 that connect back to Abraham?

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Unlocking Galatians Hebraically – Part 2

Using the Scripture as the dictionary for the scripture prevents theorizing and surmising what the ‘law’ and ‘separation’ in Galatians 2 is all about! Ephesians 2:11 explains succinctly the context of Galatians 2.

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Unlocking Galatians Hebraically – Part 3

To enter a New Covenant given as Torah – Book of the Covenant Torah paid for by his blood. Reconnecting us back to the covenants of promise from which we had been aliens and strangers – a return to the Melchizedek book of the Covenant of Promise!

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We have to be careful today who we associate with because many in the Hebrew Roots have a selective Torah observance, void of the Book of the Covenant parameters that avoids the foundational ethical and moral imperatives of Torah…no love…no compassion….no Spirit…no faith – because, “the law (Book of the Law) is not of faith.” Galatians 3:12, thus producing a selective observance void of “the weightier matters of the law.” Matthew 23:23.

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Unlocking Galatians Hebraically – Part 5

What is the freedom that Moshiach/Messiah has set us free to? Our relationship with Torah determines the value of Yahusha in our lives. Does the Torah we follow cut ourselves off, or welcome the nations into the Melchizedek Priesthood and Covenant living? How does Shaul/Paul connect back to Isaiah 56?

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Unlocking Galatians Hebraically – Part 6

What is the Melchizedek connection to Mt. Sinai? As we close out our study of Galatians, we examine the truth of the New Covenant in the cusp of the law transition point. Shaul/Paul understood that Torah teaches the primacy of Covenant fidelity, entered by through faith, with dependence on the Ruach HaKodesh/Holy Spirit for discernment.

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James the Just – Intro

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