Galatians 3 Amplified with Commentary
Priscilla Van Sutphin   www.blogtalkradio.com/Upstream
goinupstream@gmail.com

1 O YOU poor and silly and thoughtless and unreflecting and senseless Galatians! Who has fascinated or bewitched or cast a spell over you, unto whom--right before your very eyes--Jesus Christ (the Messiah) was openly and graphically set forth and portrayed as crucified?

New King James version says “O foolish Galatians”
NT:453 foolish in the greek is:  anoetos (an-o'-ay-tos); from NT:1 (as a negative particle) and a derivative of NT:3539; unintelligent; by implication, sensual: KJV - fool (-ish), unwise.

“Who has fascinated or bewitched or cast a spell over you”
NT:940 bewitched is…baskaino (bas-kah'-ee-no); akin to NT:5335; to malign, i.e. (by extension) to fascinate (by false representations):  KJV - bewitch.

False representations intimates false teaching or deceptions, twisting of the Word. And with this it seems as if they are under a spell. Paul likens the religious spirits to witchcraft. It is without rational thinking in other words, but rather as if something else has taken them over. And this is true. When you believe a lie, it’s as if you are taken over by whatever is behind that lie.  A religious spirit brings a spirit of divination that is a PYTHON spirit that speaks as if “God” but is really a lesser being, a demon imitating God’s voice, using scripture and twisting it for Satan’s purpose.


2 Let me ask you this one question: Did you receive the [Holy] Spirit as the result of obeying the Law and doing its works, or was it by hearing [the message of the Gospel] and believing [it]? [Was it from observing a law of rituals or from a message of faith?]

Here Paul gets to the root of the problem.  Holy Spirit comes due to belief in the message of the Bible and receiving the truth of what Christ did on the Cross, what He accomplished.  There is NO EARNING salvation, or having to prove yourself…trying to be perfect enough for God.

3 Are you so foolish and so senseless and so silly? Having begun [your new life spiritually] with the [Holy] Spirit, are you now reaching perfection [by dependence] on the flesh?

How many of us have NOT made this mistake ?  How many of us have not tried hard on our own to get free of bondages, habits, sins, the little foxes that spoil the vine ?
Many have because of being part of a schizophrenic body of Christ that preaches freedom, but then expects you to be perfect instantly !  It goes with that teaching that you put everything behind you and don’t look at anything in the past, yet you are not taught how to overcome it, how to overcome unforgiveness and get healed.  There is too much instant healing without any anointing for it, because the whole body is sick.

Jer 6:13-14  "Because from the least of them even to the greatest of them,
Everyone is given to covetousness; And from the prophet even to the priest,
Everyone deals falsely.  14 They have also healed the hurt of My people slightly,
Saying, 'Peace, peace!' When there is no peace. NKJV
Getting covetousness and competition out of the church would go a long way to bringing more of the presence, along with all of the idolatry and perversion.

4 Have you suffered so many things and experienced so much all for nothing (to no purpose)--if it really is to no purpose and in vain?

Paul admonishes, how can you go backwards, when you’ve suffered so much ?  How can you think there is no purpose for your suffering ?  All who are godly in Christ Jesus WILL suffer the Word says, so why do we preach that if you are in Christ nothing bad should happen to you ?  Paul says in…

Colossians 1:24  AMP
[Even] now I rejoice in the midst of my sufferings on your behalf. And in my own person I am making up whatever is still lacking and remains to be completed [ on our part] of Christ's afflictions, for the sake of His body, which is the church.

Jesus said to Paul…
Acts 9:16 NKJV  For I will show him how many things he must suffer for My name's sake." 
2 Cor 1:7 NKJV
7 And our hope for you is steadfast, because we know that as you are partakers of the sufferings , so also you will partake of the consolation.
Phil 3:10-11 NKJV
10 that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings , being conformed to His death, 11 if, by any means, I may attain to the resurrection from the dead.

Rom 8:17 NKJV and if children, then heirs — heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him, that we may also be glorified together.

Phil 1:29-30 NKJV For to you it has been granted on behalf of Christ, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake, 30 having the same conflict which you saw in me and now hear is in me.


Gal 3:5 Then does He Who supplies you with His marvelous [Holy] Spirit and works powerfully and miraculously among you do so on [the grounds of your doing] what the Law demands, or because of your believing in and adhering to and trusting in and relying on the message that you heard?

NKJV says “by HEARING OF FAITH” NT:4102  PISTIS is the word for FAITH here.
from NT:3982; persuasion, i.e. credence; moral conviction (of religious truth, or the truthfulness of God or a religious teacher), especially reliance upon Christ for salvation; abstractly, constancy in such profession; by extension, the system of religious (Gospel) truth itself:  KJV - assurance, belief, believe, faith, fidelity.

6 Thus Abraham believed in and adhered to and trusted in and relied on God, and it was reckoned and placed to his account and credited as righteousness (as conformity to the divine will in purpose, thought, and action). [Gen 15:6.]

Paul affirms over and over that it is not due to works that we can prove ourselves in any way or means, but only by trusting in what Jesus did on the cross.
NT:4100  PISTEUO is BELIEVED
pisteuo (pist-yoo'-o); from NT:4102; to have faith (in, upon, or with respect to, a person or thing), i.e. credit; by implication, to entrust (especially one's spiritual well-being to Christ):   KJV - believe (-r), commit (to trust), put in trust with.

7 Know and understand that it is [really] the people [who live] by faith who are [the true] sons of Abraham.
TRUE SONS PUT ALL THEIR TRUST IN HIM.  THERE IS NO SELF-SUFFICIENCY IN THOSE WHOSE TRUST IS PERFECT.  The entirety of our hope, efforts, dreams and all that we are; everything is in HIM. We are aware that nothing good in us is of our own doing, but His doing.

8 And the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify (declare righteous, put in right standing with Himself) the Gentiles in consequence of faith, proclaimed the Gospel [foretelling the glad tidings of a Savior long beforehand] to Abraham in the promise, saying, In you shall all the nations [of the earth] be blessed. [Gen 12:3.

JUSTIFY: NT:1344   dikaioo (dik-ah-yo'-o); from NT:1342; to render (i.e. show or regard as) just or innocent:  KJV - free, justify (-ier), be righteous.
Thus our righteousness is IN HIM, not in what we can do.  Christ our Righteousness.
Jehovah Tsidkenu

Gen 15:6 NKJV [re Abraham] And he believed in the LORD, and He accounted it to him for righteousness .
Ps 4:1 NKJV - The Safety of the Faithful
Hear me when I call, O God of my righteousness !  You have relieved me in my distress;  Have mercy on me, and hear my prayer.
In speaking of Messiah in Isaiah 11, it says:
Isa 11:4-5 NKJV
4 But with righteousness He shall judge the poor,
And decide with equity for the meek of the earth;
He shall strike the earth with the rod of His mouth,
And with the breath of His lips He shall slay the wicked.
5 Righteousness shall be the belt of His loins,
And faithfulness the belt of His waist.

9 So then, those who are people of faith are blessed and made happy and favored by God [as partners in fellowship] with the believing and trusting Abraham.

You know if you read of Abraham’s life, you might not call him a man of faith. After all, he out of fear lied twice to pharaohs over Sarah being his wife, saying she was his sister.  But when challenged to kill Isaac, he was faithful to trust in the Lord despite his feelings.  He messed up and had Ishmael per Sarah’s suggestions/imploring, yet in the end, had to put him and his mother out later because they were becoming a bad influence on Isaac.  Sometimes the things we do in life are also like that. We go our way of thinking instead of God’s way, and end up failing or making a mess of things. But God sees our failures differently than we do.  He sees them in comparison with the growth and progress we have made vs just looking at the mistake or sin itself.

10 And all who depend on the Law [who are seeking to be justified by obedience to the Law of rituals] are under a curse and doomed to disappointment and destruction, for it is written in the Scriptures, Cursed (accursed, devoted to destruction, doomed to eternal punishment) be everyone who does not continue to abide (live and remain) by all the precepts and commands written in the Book of the Law and to practice them. [Deut 27:26.]

This is STRONG language Paul is using here. He is making it so clear that to go by the law of rituals and try to obey them is to put yourself back under the old covenant which was a lesser one in that man had to keep it entirely by himself to fulfill the agreement.  Whereas in the new covenant, Christ Jesus died for us to take all the punishment for our sins.  Why would we go backwards when God has made such an extreme sacrifice ?  We get duped by the enemy in the form of religious spirits, just like the Galatians, twisting the words of scripture, and bringing us under a spell of wrong teaching, a misrepresentation of the Truth.  When we misrepresent the Word, we are also misrepresenting THE WORD…Jesus.  And the teacher who does this puts people back under the yoke of the curse, into bondage again.  We are FREE in Christ.
Free to fail, free to come short sometimes, because HE will bring us into perfection and our failures are often what HUMBLES us and helps us to realize that apart from HIS GRACE we can do NOTHING.

11 Now it is evident that no person is justified (declared righteous and brought into right standing with God) through the Law, for the Scripture says, The man in right standing with God [the just, the righteous] shall live by and out of faith and he who through and by faith is declared righteous and in right standing with God shall live. [Hab 2:4.]
So again the true sons who are declared righteous are those who accept the sacrifice and do not try to gain acceptability by WORKS.

12 But the Law does not rest on faith [does not require faith, has nothing to do with faith], for it itself says, He who does them [the things prescribed by the Law] shall live by them [not by faith]. [Lev 18:5.]

This is illuminating in the sense that it is NOT FAITH to just do the law.
True faith is being dependent on Jesus, trusting in HIM to carry you, guide you, lead you in the way you should go.  You know what, sometimes He even leads you to do things that others think are crazy, or off beat, like Abraham, to test your heart and see if you are willing to be of NO REPUTATION like He was.

13 Christ purchased our freedom [redeeming us] from the curse (doom) of the Law [and its condemnation] by [Himself] becoming a curse for us, for it is written [in the Scriptures], Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree (is crucified); [Deut 21:23.]

Self-Condemnation goes hand in hand with religious spirits. Thinking His sacrifice was NOT ENOUGH to cleanse our sin, as if we have to be punished and degraded each time we sin.  Yes we should feel guilty when we blow it.  But self flagellating is out.
He became the Curse which is something the early church called Him because he took the curse and the punishment as it says in Is 53…
Isa 53:5 NKJV
But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities;
The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed.
Amplified says it this way:
Isa 53:5
But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our guilt and iniquities; the chastisement [needful to obtain] peace and well-being for us was upon Him, and with the stripes [that wounded] Him we are healed and made whole.
Isa 53:5 THE MESSAGE BIBLE
5 But it was our sins that did that to him, that ripped and tore and crushed him — our sins!  He took the punishment, and that made us whole. Through his bruises we get healed.

All the self flagellating in the world cannot do what HE DID.  If we needed to punish ourselves, then there would be no need for the cross. HE DID IT ALL.

14 To the end that through [their receiving] Christ Jesus, the blessing [promised] to Abraham might come upon the Gentiles, so that we through faith might [all] receive [the realization of] the promise of the [Holy] Spirit.

Hallelujah !
Acts 2:38-39 NKJV   Then Peter said to them,"Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, as many as the Lord our God will call."
The Holy Spirit promise is to us and our children FOREVER. Hallelujah. That just kind of flies in the face of sessationist thinking doesn’t it ?  People might say, well, that just means we all get the Holy Spirit. NO, if we GET the Holy Spirit, then we GET ALL THAT HE IS ALSO.

15 To speak in terms of human relations, brethren, [if] even a man makes a last will and TESTAMENT (a merely human covenant), no one sets it aside or makes it void or adds to it when once it has been drawn up and signed (ratified, confirmed).
16 Now the promises (covenants, agreements) were decreed and made to Abraham and his Seed (his Offspring, his Heir). He [God] does not say, And to seeds (descendants, heirs), as if referring to many persons, but, And to your Seed (your Descendant, your Heir), obviously referring to one individual, Who is [none other than] Christ (the Messiah). [Gen 13:15; 17:8.]

So the only way to GET Holy Spirit and all that He is, is to TRUST IN JESUS as SAVIOR of the world, for HE is the only way to the Father, despite what some theologians say.

17 This is my argument: The Law, which began 430 years after the covenant [concerning the coming Messiah], does not and cannot annul the covenant previously established (ratified) by God, so as to abolish the promise and make it void. [Ex 12:40.]

Need to think about that. It is said and read. But really think about that. When God made the promise, it was a covenant, which cannot be broken.  So even when the law was enacted, it did NOT NULL & VOID the promise !  WOW !  WOW ! WOW !  It does not depend on what you perform to keep it then does it ???  Though He wants holiness, for He said, without holiness no one will see God.  We can only be holy though by getting into HIS PRESENCE. He is the One Who makes us holy. So we need to seek HIM daily, and HE will gradually perfect us as we do that with all of our hearts.