Galatians 2:15-21 The Voice (VOICE)
15 We are natural-born Jews, not sinners from the godless nations. 16 But we know that no one is made right with God by meeting the demands of the law. It is only through the faithfulness of Jesus[a] the Anointed that salvation is even possible. This is why we put faith in Jesus the Anointed: so we will be put right with God. It’s His faithfulness—not works prescribed by the law—that puts us in right standing with God because no one will be acquitted and declared “right” for doing what the law demands. 17 Even though we are seeking a right relationship with God through the Anointed, the fact is we have been found out. We are sinners. But does that mean the Anointed is the one responsible for our sins? Absolutely not! 18 If I reconstruct something I have worked so hard to destroy, then I prove myself a sinner.
So why all this personal history? Paul thinks it is useful because the people preaching the false gospel in Galatia claim to be operating under the authority of some of the followers of Jesus from Jerusalem, the mother church. Paul doesn’t have their pedigree and, according to them, doesn’t deserve the rank he claims as the emissary to the nations. They say that not only is Paul deficient, but his message is, too, because it doesn’t bring outsiders to follow the law. So Paul goes toe-to-toe with them, defending not only his call but also his message. The good news he preaches comes directly from the risen Jesus and is confirmed by the Jerusalem leaders.
19 The law has provided the means to end my dependence on it for righteousness, and so I died to the law. Now I have found the freedom to truly live for God. 20 I have been crucified with the Anointed One—I am no longer alive—but the Anointed is living in me; and whatever life I have left in this failing body I live by the faithfulness of God’s Son, the One who loves me and gave His body on the cross for me. 21 I can’t dismiss God’s grace, and I won’t. If being right with God depends on how we measure up to the law, then the Anointed’s sacrifice on the cross was the most tragic waste in all of history!