N.T. Wright’s Galatians– Part Forty Three

N.T. Wright’s Galatians– Part Forty Three August 18, 2021


Q. I quite agree with you that when Paul says people behaving like that as a settled course of life will not enter the kingdom, the present continual tense of the verb means an ongoing lifestyle or practice, not a one-off action, hopefully later repented of. The question I regularly get when I tell students this is— How much behavior like that counts as too much and so moral apostasy? What would you say?

A. A very good question. Rockefeller, asked how much he needed to live on, replied ‘a little more than I get’. Paul in 1 Cor 9 speaks of exercising sharp self-control ‘lest having preached to others I myself would be a castaway’ or words to that effect. That implies that if we’d asked Paul ‘so how much wrong behaviour is too much’ he might have said ‘I hope it’s a little more than I do – and I’m working on it’. Or words to that effect.

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