This 8-hour seminar is a non-traditional (Protestant/Evangelical/Lutheran) survey of Paul's epistle to the Galatians. It emphasizes the human dynamics surrounding Paul's radical message of not merely "forensic justification by faith to be saved so you can go to heaven when you die" but rather that the entire cosmos has been restructured by the resurrection of Jesus from the dead.
We will emphasize Paul’s worldview, culture, and circumstances as interpretive necessities for this aggressive and combative letter written to, and read out loud in, a "worship service," of an overwhelmingly Gentile community. We will try to read Paul, as Paul, for what he was: a brilliant, rabbinically-educated, Second Temple-era Jew who encountered Jesus in resurrection and in His Body--the new community. The epochal nature of the change in every facet of Saul of Tarsus's existence is often not recognized.
His difficult doctrine derived directly from his Acts 9 and 10 "experiences." His radical, difficult to understand (2 Pet. 3:16) and at times, even outrageous, interpretations and assertions from the Scriptures eventually led him into intense conflict with the Jerusalem church, it's leadership, and the behind-the-scene-power-brokers in that community. We will not romanticize, artificially harmonize, nor sterilize the interpersonal and congregational conflicts and difficulties his doctrine produced--and still produces today! There was real drama in Galatia.