A hard-pressed pastor-teacher sits at his desk one rainy morning, surrounded by books, and staring at the text of Galatians 3:8-14. … Does anyone understand Paul’s argument in Galatians 3:8-14?
Debate has raged in the academy on what Paul really said and what he meant by such key terms as ‘justification’. The debate looks set to smoulder on. In the meantime, pastor-teachers still have to preach Paul to the people sitting in front of them on a Sunday morning in a way that does indeed pastor and teach them.
This study suggests that a helpful way to work around the disagreements on Paul may be to approach the preaching of Paul from three perspectives: a pastoral perspective (as ‘pastor’), a narrative perspective (as ‘story-teller’) and a systematic perspective (as ‘sage’). Using Galatians 3:8-14 as a test case, the study suggests that this approach may expose the centre of Paul’s anguish for the Galatians, unpick how he persuades them to reengage with the crucified Christ, and enrich our understanding of what it means to be redeemed
Ben Cooper is the Minister for Training at Christ Church Fulwood in Sheffield, and is a member of the Latimer Trust Council.
ISBN: 978 0 946307 62 3