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I marvel that ye are so soon removed.

By Martin Luther


      Again the Apostle puts in a gentle word. He does not berate the Galatians, 'I marvel that ye are so unsteady, unfaithful.' He says, 'I marvel that ye are so soon removed.' He does not address them as evildoers. He speaks to them as people who have suffered great loss. He condemns those who removed them rather than the Galatians. At the same time he gently reproves them for permitting themselves to be removed. The criticism is implied that they should have been a little more settled in their beliefs. If they had taken better hold of the Word they could not have been removed so easily.

      Jerome thinks that Paul is playing upon the name Galatians, deriving it from the Hebrew word Galath, which means fallen or carried away, as though Paul wanted to say, 'You are true Galatians, i.e., fallen away in name and in fact.' Some believe that the Germans are descended from the Galatians. There may be something to that. For the Germans are not unlike the Galatians in their lack of constancy. At first we Germans are very enthusiastic, but presently our emotions cool and we become slack. When the light of the Gospel first came to 25us many were zealous, heard sermons greedily, and held the ministry of God's Word in high esteem. But now that religion has been reformed, many who formerly were such earnest disciples have discarded the Word of God, have become sow-bellies like the foolish and inconsistent Galatians.

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