My dear children, for whom I am again in the pains of childbirth until Christ is formed in you…

Here we learn what Paul thinks is most important for every student of Jesus. To be transformed into the image of Jesus! Christ...formed in you!
Transformation into the likeness of Jesus! This is the goal of every student of the Teacher. To become more like Him in heart and life!

Here Paul calls the Christians in Galatia his dear children. For he labored to bring them into the new birth of faith in Jesus. They became students of Jesus and were on the way to becoming more like Jesus.

Sadly, this process is in danger of being interrupted by false teachers, who seek to enslave these students of Jesus with requirements of the Law of Moses.

You are observing special days and months and seasons and years! I fear for you, that somehow I have wasted my efforts on you.

Paul’s work is in danger of being destroyed if the Christians of Galatia turn their focus away from inner spiritual transformation. If they become entangled in religious customs that have nothing to do with being a good student of Jesus!

We can imagine Paul’s concern. He is far from them. He isn’t sure what is going on - how I wish I could be with you now and change my tone, because I am perplexed about you!

Paul does what he can. He writes this letter warning them to refuse the teaching of those who do not care about this truth - Those people are zealous to win you over, but for no good. What they want is to alienate you from us, so that you may be zealous for them.

Now as then, there is a persistent temptation for students of Jesus to think that customs and rituals are as important as spiritual formation. Falling for this leads to the dead-end of legalism, rather than the life-changing process of becoming more like Jesus which leads to eternal life.

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