Galatians 1:13-17; 2:11-21
Paul is here calling the other disciples on the carpet. It’s an odd passage to read a week after the Jerusalem conference, when we just heard about the church opening to Gentiles. It is important that we read the letter carefully, and in the context, remembering the conversation from Acts 15 last week.
What Paul actually seems concerned about is different from the conversation in Acts 15. Paul is concerned that Peter (Cephas) is a Jew and not acting like one. Paul wants Peter, and by extension, all Christians, to act with integrity to who he is, who he was, and how he has been transformed in Christ. While eating kosher isn’t a common issue for many Christians today, there are many other ways in which we do not act with integrity.
Paul wants Peter to share Peter’s journey, as a Jew, into faith in Christ, not so that Peter is locked into the law, but so that he lives with integrity his faith in the world and can show that faith. Christians acting without integrity remains an issue. How do we address those shortcomings today?