Daily Devotions


Day 26

"Perceived the grace that had been given to me..."

Text: Galatians 2:9a


Some of the original disciples of the Lord Jesus became outstanding in their life and ministry. Paul commented on their standing in the following text.

And when James, Cephas, and John, who seemed to be pillars,
perceived the grace that had been given to me, they gave me
and Barnabas the right hand of fellowship, that we should
go to the Gentiles and they to the circumcised.

Galatians 2:9

1. Identification of the “pillars” of the church

a) These were all apostles.
b) John and Cephas (Peter)
i) They had established their ministry very early (Acts 2-5).
ii) They ministered very closely together.
c) James
i) He was a late-comer.
ii) He was identified as the half-brother of Jesus (Mark 6:3).
iii) He did not come to faith in Jesus initially (John 7:5).
iv) The Scriptures are silent as to when he came to faith in Jesus.
v) But before too long he was one of the pillars of the church (Galatians 2:9).
vi) He was identified with John and Peter (Galatians 2:9).

2. The use of the word “seemed”

a) This is not to say that Paul was denigrating their position as “pillars”.
b) The word “seemed” simply suggests two thoughts:-
i) Paul was commenting on the outward appearance.
ii) He understood that they were widely recognised as “apostles” by the church at large.

3. They “perceived the grace that had been given to me”

a) These were leading apostles.
b) Their perception counted for something.
c) These apostles recognised that God had indeeed given Paul this grace of ministry to the Gentiles.
d) The word “grace” is used to describe “ministry” in this context.