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The Letter of Paul to the, the ninth book in the NT and one of the most important historical and theological documents from early Christianity. The letter contains valuable autobiographical information about Paul and his mission to the Gentiles and also lays out Paul’s theological rationale for offering the gospel to Gentiles without requiring them to become circumcised (i.e., become Jews). It is written in anger, as Paul must contend with opponents who have attacked him and his understanding of the gospel.

Outline of Contents


I. Epistolary prescript (Gal 1:1-5)

II. Introduction (exordium)

III. Statement of facts (narratio)

A. Thesis (Gal 1:12)

B. First part: from Paul’s birth to mission in Asia Minor (Gal 1:13-24)

C. Second part: Paul’s second visit in Jerusalem (the Jerusalem conference)

D. Third part: conflict at Antioch (Gal 2:11-14)

IV. Proposition (propositio)

V. Proofs (probatio)

A. First argument: the Galatians’ experience of the Spirit (Gal 3:1-5)

B. Second argument: God’s promise to Abraham (Gal 3:6-14)

C. Third argument: common human practice of law (Gal 3:15-18)

D. Digression: Jewish Torah (Gal 3:19-25)

E. Fourth argument: Christian tradition (Gal 3:26-4:11)

F. Fifth argument: friendship (Gal 4:12-20)

G. Sixth argument: allegory of Sarah and Hagar (Gal 4:21-31)

VI. Exhortation (exhortatio)

A. Warning against acceptance of Jewish Torah (Gal 5:1-12)

B. Warning against corruption of flesh (Gal 5:13-24)

C. Recommendations for the Christian life (series of sententiae)

VII. Epistolary postscript (Gal 6:11-18)