Galatians 5:8
This persuasion comes not of him that calls you.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(8) This persuasion . . .—He who calls the Galatians is here, as elsewhere, God; and certainly, the Apostle says, it can have been by no intimation or guidance from Him that they were led to accept such perverted teaching.

5:7-12 The life of a Christian is a race, wherein he must run, and hold on, if he would obtain the prize. It is not enough that we profess Christianity, but we must run well, by living up to that profession. Many who set out fairly in religion, are hindered in their progress, or turn out of the way. It concerns those who begin to turn out of the way, or to tire in it, seriously to inquire what hinders them. The opinion or persuasion, ver. 8, was, no doubt, that of mixing the works of the law with faith in Christ in justification. The apostle leaves them to judge whence it must arise, but sufficiently shows that it could be owing to none but Satan. It is dangerous for Christian churches to encourage those who follow, but especially who spread, destructive errors. And in reproving sin and error, we should always distinguish between the leaders and the led. The Jews were offended, because Christ was preached as the only salvation for sinners. If Paul and others would have admitted that the observance of the law of Moses was to be joined with faith in Christ, as necessary to salvation, then believers might have avoided many of the sufferings they underwent. The first beginnings of such leaven should be opposed. And assuredly those who persist in disturbing the church of Christ must bear their judgment.This persuasion - This belief that it is necessary to obey the laws of Moses, and to intermingle the observance of Jewish rites with the belief of the Christian doctrines in order to be saved.

Not of him that calleth you - That is, of God, who had called them into his kingdom. That it refers to God and not to Paul is plain. They knew well enough that Paul had not persuaded them to it, and it was important now to show them that it could not be traced to God, though they who taught it pretended to be commissioned by him.

8. This persuasion—Greek, "The persuasion," namely, to which you are yielding. There is a play on words in the original, the Greek for persuasion being akin to "obey" (Ga 5:7). This persuasion which ye have obeyed.

cometh not of—that is "from." Does not emanate from Him, but from an enemy.

that calleth you—(Ga 5:13; Ga 1:6; Php 3:14; 1Th 5:24). The calling is the rule of the whole race [Bengel].

This persuasion; this new opinion into which seducers have misled you, which, by embracing it, you have made yours.

Cometh not of him that calleth you; is not from God, who hath called you out of darkness into marvellous light, unto fellowship with himself, into a state of grace and favour with him, and to the hopes of eternal life; and who yet calleth you by his gospel: it must therefore be from the devil and his instruments, who go about to seduce and pervert you. This persuasion cometh not of him that calleth you. That is, the opinion they were persuaded to believe; and which the Syriac version renders, "your persuasion"; this is not of God, who had called them into the grace of Christ; nor of Christ, who had called them to the knowledge of himself, and communion with him; nor of the Spirit of Christ, who had called them with an holy calling, and who still continued to call them to repentance; nor of any faithful minister of the Gospel, who had been concerned as an instrument in their effectual calling; meaning the notion they were persuaded to give into, that circumcision and the works of the law were necessary to salvation, and that these were to be joined with the righteousness of Christ for justification; such a conceit as this could never be of God, nor any evangelical minister, but must be of Satan or his emissaries, the false apostles. {7} This persuasion cometh not of {f} him that calleth you.

(7) He plays the part of an apostle with them, and uses his authority, denying that any doctrine can come from God which is contrary to his.

(f) Of God.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
Galatians 5:8. It was God who called Abraham, Moses, Samuel and the prophets of old and was now calling the Galatians through the Gospel of which Paul was minister, but this new persuasion was no true gospel, and did not come forth from Him.8. This persuasion] nearly equivalent to ‘submission, obedience’. Others take it in an active sense ‘this suasion on the part of the false teachers, to which you are yielding’. The objection to this view is that ‘persuasion’ is a weak term to apply to those who had hindered them by throwing obstacles in their way. The word translated hindered is a military term, and denotes the obstructions thrown in the way of an advancing army, by opening trenches, erecting barricades, &c.—a very cogent kind of persuasion.

him that calleth you] i.e. God the Father. The present participle is used here, instead of the past (c. Galatians 1:6), because the reference is not to the particular case of those addressed, but to that never-failing grace of God to which all ‘effectual calling’ is owing, Romans 9:11.Galatians 5:8. Ἡ πεισμονὴ) Most commentators interpret it persuasion, also with the addition of this, that, or your [hæc, ista, vestra], according to the testimony of Lubinus on this passage. Comp. Chrysost. This word very rarely occurs, and Eustathius alone, as I can find, has it at Odyss. χ., where he shows that “πεῖσμα and πεισμονὴ are said respecting those that start difficulties and set themselves in the way [ἐπὶ τῶν ἐνστατικῶν—stubborn, obstinate persons], and are figuratively taken from the cables [πεισμάτων], that is, the hawsers used in ships.” But a pertinacious and obstinate man is given to starting difficulties [is ἐνστατικὸς]; and therefore that man has πεισμονὴν, self-confidence, who, having left off running, ἐνέχεται, holds fast to [the law] obstinately, and who persuades and trusts to himself alone, and does not obey [πείθεται] another, Galatians 5:1; Galatians 5:7; and in this way μὴ πείθεσθαι, and ἡ πεισμονὴ, and πέποιθα, form an Antanaclasis,[46] a figure, which is frequently used both by Paul, as many constantly observe, and by the other sacred writers, as Glassius well demonstrates. Whether it be a metaphor or not, at least this verbal noun, like other nouns in-ονὴ, is intransitive[47] [not a persuading of others, but a persuasion in one’s self].—οὐκ, not) supply is; is not of (God), who called you, but from a power truly hostile; and there is subjoined a metonymy of the abstract for the concrete, as appears from the previous word, who, not what.—καλοῦντος) who called you; comp. Galatians 5:13, you have been called. So 1 Thessalonians 5:24; comp. Php 3:14. The calling is the rule of the whole race.

[46] See App. When a word is put twice in the same passage in a double sense.

[47] Wahl notices the paronomasia in the words πείθεσθαι and πεισμονή. He gives the latter word a transitive meaning, Studium persuadendi aliis ea quæ nobis placent et probantur—The desire to persuade others of what pleases ourselves and meets our approval. ‘Ueberredungskunst.’—ED.Verse 8. - This persuasion cometh not of him that calleth you (ἡ πεισμονὴ οὐκ ἐκ τοῦ καλοῦντος ὑμᾶς); this persuasion, or the mind to hearken to this doctrine, is not from him that calleth you. The exact force of the word πεισμονή, which so far as has been noted does not occur in any earlier writer, is disputed. We may group it with ἐπιλησμονή, forgetfulness; φεισμονή (sparinguess), clemency; πλησμονή, fulness, satiety; which are likewise verbal nouns formed from the perfect passive (ἐπιλέλησμαι, etc.). And the comparison favours the conclusion that πεισμονή denotes the disposition, state, or habit of mind evinced in being persuaded in the way now thought cf. So the Greek commentators (Ecumenius and Theophylact understand it of their having been persuaded to Judaize. The explanation of the noun as an active verbal, as if it were the persuasion which was soliciting them from without, does not seem to be so well berne out by its etymological formation, but appears nevertheless to be that accepted by Chrysostom. This noun, seemingly not often used, appears to have been selected by the apostle to brand the belief in the truth of Judaizing views which the Galatians were imbibing as being in nature diverse from the positive faith, which realizes the truth of the gospel; it is the product of over-persuasion, of cozenage even, rather than an acceptance of the plain setting forth of the simple truth, while "faith" is "the gift of God" (Ephesians 1:19, 20; Ephesians 2:5, 8). As Chrysostom observes, ." It was not men's persuasion (πεισμονὴ ἀνθρωπίνη), but the power of God, which persuaded the souls of these who believe." By "him that calleth you" is plainly meant God (comp. 1 Thessalonians 2:12; 1 Thessalonians 5:24). "The present participle is preferred here to the aorist, because the stress is laid on the person rather than the act" (Bishop Lightfoot). That persuasibleness of the Galatians was not from God; at the best it was from the world (comp. Colossians 2:20); but was it not, rather, from Satan, whose emissaries those false teachers were (comp. 2 Corinthians 11:15)? The apostle makes this assertion categorically, knowing it to be true. The gospel which he had brought to them had been sealed by the gifts of the Spirit accompanying its reception; while the doctrine they were now in danger of listening to was another thing altogether (Galatians 1:6) - a thing with an anathema upon it. This persuasion (ἡ πεισμονὴ)

Or, the persuasion. N.T.o. olxx, oClass. It occurs in Ignatius, Romans 3. and Just. Mart. Ap. i. 53. The sense is not passive, your being persuaded, but active, the persuasion which the Judaising teachers exert over you. Comp. 1 Corinthians 1:4, πιθοῖς λόγοις persuasive words. There may be a slight word play on πείθεσθαι and πεισμονὴ. Obedience to the truth is the result of the persuasive power of the truth.

Him that calleth (τοῦ καλοῦντος)

Very often applied to God by Paul. See Romans 8:30; Romans 9:11; 1 Corinthians 1:9; 1 Corinthians 7:15; Galatians 1:15; 1 Thessalonians 2:12 1 Thessalonians 4:7; 1 Thessalonians 5:24; 2 Thessalonians 2:14. The persuasion to subject yourselves to the Jewish law does not proceed from him who called you to freedom in Christ.

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