51For freedom Christ has set us free. Stand firm, therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.
2 Listen! I, Paul, am telling you that if you let yourselves be circumcised, Christ will be of no benefit to you. 3Once again I testify to every man who lets himself be circumcised that he is obliged to obey the entire law. 4You who want to be justified by the law have cut yourselves off from Christ; you have fallen away from grace. 5For through the Spirit, by faith, we eagerly wait for the hope of righteousness. 6For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for anything; the only thing that counts is faith working* through love.
7 You were running well; who prevented you from obeying the truth? 8Such persuasion does not come from the one who calls you. 9A little yeast leavens the whole batch of dough. 10I am confident about you in the Lord that you will not think otherwise. But whoever it is that is confusing you will pay the penalty. 11But my friends,* why am I still being persecuted if I am still preaching circumcision? In that case the offence of the cross has been removed. 12I wish those who unsettle you would castrate themselves!
13 For you were called to freedom, brothers and sisters;* only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for self-indulgence,* but through love become slaves to one another. 14For the whole law is summed up in a single commandment, You shall love your neighbour as yourself.
The New Revised Standard Version (Anglicized Edition), copyright 1989, 1995 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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10 February 2011