I wish we had the space to focus on every single verse in this passage, and I encourage you to do so in your own time, but for today we will lean into verses two and eleven.
How are you running?
Galatians 2:2 - I went in response to a revelation and, meeting privately with those esteemed as leaders, I presented to them the gospel that I preach among the Gentiles. I wanted to be sure I was not running and had not been running my race in vain. (NIV)
Paul, first points out that he was following a revelation of the spirit, so he went up to Jerusalem, (after 14 years) and presented his message before leaders in private. He did this to make certain that he was not running in vain.
You can never be too far into your mission, that correction still isn’t needed.
We can assume this message had been one that Paul had been preaching for 14 years. A message that Paul had seen change lives, but He still desired correction, truth, and encouragement from his fellow believers. He was not only open to being corrected, but he desired it if necessary. He does anything to make sure that he is running on the straight and narrow path.
...Are you running in vain?
What Gospel are you preaching with your life, actions, and words? Is it the Gospel of Christ or is it the Gospel of you?
Follow the example of Paul, and seek out correction, even when it may not be necessary.
Galatians 2:11 - But when Cephas came to Antioch, I opposed him to his face, because he stood condemned.
Paul was able to oppose Peter, because he was first willing to receive opposition. In the same passage we see Paul seeking to be corrected and also correcting. -- He makes sure that he doesn’t have a log in his own eye before attempting to take the speck out of his brother's eye. (See Matthew 7:5)
Paul calls out Peter for acting in hypocrisy--a very common sin to us all. Peter had been acting differently around those who had differing beliefs, he acted one way around the spiritually “elite” and another around the gentiles.
If you a Christian live like the lost, how can you expect the lost to live like Christians? (2:14)
3 take away questions to reflect on:
What Gospel am I preaching with my life?
Am I seeking out correction as much as I am giving it?
Am I running the race as I am called to run?
We’d love to hear your take aways from this passage! Comment below!