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Paul’s letter to the Galatians was written shortly after his first missionary journey which took place around 45 AD. This makes it one of the earliest letters in the New Testament and possibly the earliest. Paul wrote to 7 churches, some twice, making 9 letters in total. After an opening line in which he identifies himself as the author, Paul usually goes on to give thanks for the Christians in that Church. The letter to the Galatians is remarkable in that it is the only one in which he does not give thanks but rather gets straight to his subject matter: the Gospel.

Although the Galatian Churches had started well were now in danger of departing from the Gospel that they had embraced. False teachers with a Jewish emphasis had come into the Churches after Paul had left. The Judaizers were teaching the Galatians that in addition to faith in Christ, they had also to observe the law of Moses in order to be saved. Paul resists this robustly and the letter makes the case strongly as to why salvation is not according to works but according to faith alone in Christ who gave Himself for us. Paul shows that astonishingly Christ was ‘made a curse for us’ so that He might save us from sin’s curse. Christ bore that penalty Himself in His own righteous person for the sins of all who believe. The death of Christ is for individuals so that every believer can say: ‘the Son of God, Who loved me and gave Himself for me’ (Galatians 2:20). The letter is relevant to all Christians, especially those coming from a religious background in which salvation is said to be through good works.


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