In this Sunday’s Epistle reading from Galatians 2, the Apostle Paul begins by saying that man is not justified by works of the law, but through faith in Jesus Christ. Fr. Gregory focuses on two aspects of the passage: faith and justification.
He points out that, translated literally from Greek, the passage reads “Man is not justified by works of the law but through the faith of Jesus Christ.” In this translation, we see that Jesus Christ is the example that we are to follow in our faith. He voluntarily went to the Cross, and struggled with that choice as we see in Luke. Nevertheless, He said, “Not My will, but Yours be done.” The obedience of faith that He set forth is a model for our own faith.
Another concept presented in the Epistle is justification, and the Apostle Paul says that we are not justified by works of the law. Fr. Gregory explains that the meaning of justification is to be made right, and the word refers to a whole way of life. We are justified through living by the faith of Jesus Christ; He is our law, culture, custom and way of life.
Finally, Fr. Gregory stresses that while Jesus’ love is often referred to universally throughout the Gospel, several passages, including this week’s Epistle, show that His love is also individual. He loves each one of us individually as much as He does all of us.