The Letter to the Galatians

The Letter to the Galatians

by David A. deSilva

Hardcover(New Edition)

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Writing a commentary on Galatians is a daunting task. Despite its relative brevity, this Pauline letter raises a number of foundational theological issues, and it has played a vital role in shaping Christian thought and practice over the centuries.

In this replacement of Ronald Y. K. Fung’s 1988 New International Commentary volume, David deSilva ably rises to the challenge, providing a coherent account of Galatians as a piece of strategically crafted communication that addresses both the immediate pastoral challenges facing Paul’s converts in Galatia and the underlying questions that gave rise to them.

Paying careful attention to the history, philology, and theology of the letter, and interacting with a wealth of secondary literature on both Galatians and the rest of the Pauline corpus, deSilva’s exegetically sound commentary will serve as an essential resource for pastors and theological students.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780802830555
Publisher: Eerdmans, William B. Publishing Company
Publication date: 09/18/2018
Series: New International Commentary on the New Testament (NICNT) Series
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 600
Product dimensions: 6.20(w) x 9.40(h) x 1.70(d)

About the Author

David A. deSilva is Trustees' Distinguished Professor of New Testament and Greek at Ashland Theological Seminary. His many other books include An Introduction to the New Testament, Introducing the Apocrypha, and Galatians: A Handbook to the Greek Text.

Table of Contents

List of Excursuses xi

General Editor's Preface xiii

Author's Preface xv

Abbreviations xix

Bibliography xxv


1 Authorship 1

II Paul's Ministry in Galatia 3

III The Pastoral Challenge in Galatia 7

IV The "Good News" According to The Rival Teachers 16

A The Case for Circumcision 17

B Torah as the Way to Perfection 19

C Whom Should the Galatians Trust? 22

V Who Were the Galatian Christians? 26

VI Galatians in Roman Geography and Pauline Chronology 28

A The Data within Galatians 29

B Acts and Galatians 33

C Was Paul Addressing Churches in North or in South Galatia? 39

D Paul's Visits to Jerusalem in Galatians and Acts 48

VII The Date of Galatians 58

VIII Galatians as Persuasive Communication 91

A Galatians as Ancient Letter 91

B Paul's Goals for Galatians and Its Rhetorical Genre 94

C Appeals to Ethos, Pathos, and Logos in Galatians 97

D The Strategic Arrangement of Galatians 102

IX Was Galatians Effective? 107

Text and Commentary

I Paul's Opening Greeting (1:1-5) 111

II Paul Announces the Presenting Problem (1:6-10) 122

III Strategic Recollections (1:11-2:21) 136

A The Divine Source of Paul's Dramatic Transformation and Gospel (1:11-17) 137

B Paul's First Visit to Jerusalem and Work in Syria and Cilicia (1:18-24) 158

C Paul's Second Visit to Jerusalem (2:1-10) 169

D The Confrontation in Antioch (2:11-14) 192

E The Coherence of Paul's Position (2:15-21) 212

IV Arguments Against Adopting Torah Observance (3:1-4:11) 263

A Proof from Experience: The Galatians' Reception of the Spirit (3:1-6) 264

B Proof from Abraham's Precedent (3:7-9) 278

C Deductive Proof from the Scriptures (3:10-14) 285

D Proof from Analogy: Testamentary Law (3:15-18) 305

E Why, Then, the Torah? (3:19-22) 313

F Proof from Analogy: Coming of Age in the Household, Part 1 (3:23-29) 324

G Proof from Analogy: Coming of Age in the Household, Part 2 (4:1-7) 343

H Rebuke Based on Argument from Analogy (4:8-11) 362

V A Relational Appeal (4:12-20) 376

VI A Scriptural Coup De Grâce (4:21-31) 390

VII Paul's Principal Advice (5:1-12) 407

A Paul's Recommended Course of Action (5:1-6) 408

B A Strategic Resumption of Appeals to Ethos (5:7-12) 431

VIII Spirit-Empowered Righteousness (5:13-6:10) 443

A The Spirit's Sufficiency to Nurture Righteousness (5:13-26) 443

B Practical Advice for Walking in the Spirit (6:1-10) 478

IX Paul's Parting Shots and Affirmations (6:11-18) 500

Index of Subjects 519

Index of Authors 522

Index of Scripture and Other Ancient Texts 528

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