Category Archives: Poetry

Poetry by the Book – Galatians 3:19-29

Poetry: Literary work in which special intensity is given to the expression of feelings  and ideas by the use of distinctive style, rhythm and structure.a

Why then the law?
It was added because of transgressions,
till the offspring should come
to whom the promise had been made.
If a law had been given which could make alive,
righteousness would indeed be by the law.
Is the law then against the promises of God?
Certainly not!

Scripture consigned all things to sin.
We were confined under the law,
kept under restraint until faith should be revealed.
It was ordained by angels through an intermediary.
An intermediary implies more than one.
God is one!
The law was our custodian until Christ came,
that what was promised to faith in Jesus Christ,
might be given to those who believe.

Now that faith has come
we are no longer under a custodian.
For as many of you as were baptized into Christ
have put on Christ.
You are all sons of God,
through faith.

There is neither Jew nor Greek,
neither slave nor free,
neither male nor female.
You are all one in Christ Jesus,
heirs according to promise
that we might be justified by faith.
You are Abraham’s offspring,
if you are Christ’s!

a My poetic structure is created verbatim from the sentences and phrases of Galatians 3:19-29 in the RSV Bible

Poetry by the Book – Galatians 3:15-18

Poetry: Literary work in which special intensity is given to the expression of feelings and ideas by the use of distinctive style, structure and rhythm.a


To give a human example, brethren;
promises were made to Abraham and to his offspring,
referring to one, which is Christ.
No one annuls even a man’s will, or adds to it, once it has been ratified.

I mean: the law.
God gave it to Abraham by a promise,
It is no longer by promise,
if the inheritance is by the law,
so as to make the promise void.
Four hundred and thirty years afterward.
does not annul a covenant previously ratified by God.

a My structure created verbatim from the sentences and phrases of the RSV Bible.

Poetry by the Book – Galatians 3:1-14

Poetry: Literary work in which special intensity is given to the expression of feelings and ideas by the use of distinctive style, structure and rhythm.a

Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed as crucified
before your very eyes.
Are you now trying to finish by means of  the flesh[sinful state of human beings]
after beginning by means of the Spirit?
Did you receive the Spirit by the works of the law,
or by believing what you heard?
You foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you?
I would like to learn just one thing from you:
are you so foolish?
Have you experienced so much in vain—if it really was in vain? 

So again I ask,
does God give you his Spirit and work miracles among you by the works
of the law or by your believing what you heard?

Scripture foresaw
and announced the gospel in advance to Abraham
that God would justify the Gentiles by faith.
Abraham “believed God
and it was credited to him as righteousness.”
Those who have faith are children of Abraham.
Those who rely on faith are blessed
because “the righteous will live by faith.” 

The law is not based on faith.
All who rely on the works of the law are under a curse.
Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law.
He redeemed us in order that the blessing given to Abraham might come to the Gentiles through Christ Jesus,
so that by faith we might receive the promise of the Spirit.

a My structure created verbatim from the sentences and phrases of the NIV Bible.

Poetry by the Book – Galatians 2:11-21

Poetry: Literary work in which special intensity is given to the expression of feelings and ideas by the use of distinctive style, structure and rhythm.a

When Cephas came to Antioch,
he used to eat with the Gentiles.
Certain men came from James.
When they arrived,
he began to draw back and separate himself from the Gentiles.
He was afraid of those who belonged to the circumcision group.
I opposed him to his face,
he stood condemned.
The other Jews joined him in his hypocrisy,
even Barnabas was led astray.
They were not acting in line with the truth of the gospel.

I said to Cephas in front of them all,
“you force Gentiles to follow Jewish customs
yet you live like a Gentile and not like a Jew.”
We Jews find ourselves also among the sinners,
doesn’t that mean that Christ promotes sin? 

Absolutely not!
A person is not justified by the works of the law.
Through the law I died to the law so that I might live for God.
If I rebuild what I destroyed, then I really would be a lawbreaker
because by the works of the law no one will be justified.

We who are Jews by birth and not sinful Gentiles,
we too, have put our faith in Christ Jesus
that we may be justified by faith in Christ.
Do not set aside the grace of God!
Christ died for nothing
if righteousness could be gained through the law.

I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

a Structure taken from the NIV Bible

Poetry by the Book – Galatians 2:1-10

Poetry: Literary work in which special intensity is given to the expression of feelings and ideas by the use of distinctive style, structure and rhythm.  

After fourteen years
I went up again to Jerusalem, this time with Barnabas.
I took Titus along also
meeting privately with those esteemed as leaders
in response to a revelation.
I presented to them the gospel that I preach among the Gentiles.
I wanted to be sure I was not running,
and had not been running, my race in vain.

Some false believers had infiltrated our ranks
to spy on the freedom we have in Christ Jesus
to make us slaves.
Yet not even Titus, who was with me,
was compelled to be circumcised
We did not give in to them for a moment,
so that the truth of the gospel might be preserved.

God does not show favoritism
for those who were held in high esteem.
They recognized
I had been entrusted with preaching the gospel
to the uncircumcised
just as Peter had been to the circumcised.
For God,
at work in Peter as an apostle to the circumcised,
was also at work in me as an apostle to the Gentiles. 

Those esteemed as pillars,
they agreed.
James, Cephas and John,
gave me and Barnabas the right hand of fellowship
when they recognized the grace given to me.
We should go to the Gentiles, and they to the circumcised.
The very thing I had been eager to do all along
was that we should continue to remember the poor.a

NIV scripture used

Poetry by the Book – Galatians 1:11-24

Galatians 1
11 For I would have you know, brothers, that the gospel that was preached by me is not man’s gospel.
12 For I did not receive it from any man, nor was I taught it, but I received it through a revelation of Jesus Christ.
13 For you have heard of my former life in Judaism, how I persecuted the church of God violently and tried to destroy it.
14 And I was advancing in Judaism beyond many of my own age among my people, so extremely zealous was I for the traditions of my fathers.
15 But when he who had set me apart before I was born, and who called me by his grace,
16 was pleased to reveal his Son to me, in order that I might preach him among the Gentiles, I did not immediately consult with anyone;
17 nor did I go up to Jerusalem to those who were apostles before me, but I went away into Arabia, and returned again to Damascus.
18 Then after three years I went up to Jerusalem to visit Cephas and remained with him fifteen days.
19 But I saw none of the other apostles except James the Lord’s brother.
20 (In what I am writing to you, before God, I do not lie!)
21 Then I went into the regions of Syria and Cilicia.
22 And I was still unknown in person to the churches of Judea that are in Christ.
23 They only were hearing it said, “He who used to persecute us is now preaching the faith he once tried to destroy.”
24 And they glorified God because of me.

Poetry: Literary work in which special intensity is given to the expression of feelings and ideas by the use of distinctive style and rhythm.

In what I am writing to you, before God, I do not lie!
The gospel that was preached by me is not man’s gospel.
I received it through a revelation of Jesus Christ.
I did not receive it from any man, nor was I taught it.
So extremely zealous was I for the traditions of my fathers
I persecuted the church of God violently and tried to destroy it.
I was advancing in Judaism beyond many
for the traditions of my fathers.

When he
who called me by his grace,
who had set me apart before I was born,
was pleased to reveal his Son to me
in order that I might preach him among the Gentiles,
I did not immediately consult with anyone.
but I went away into Arabia, and returned again to Damascus.

After three years I went up to Jerusalem to visit Cephas
I saw none of the other apostles except James the Lord’s brother.
Then I went into the regions of Syria and Cilicia.
to the churches of Judea that are in Christ.

I was still unknown in person.
They only were hearing it said,
“he who used to persecute us is now preaching
the faith he once tried to destroy”
Because of me
they glorified God!

Poetry by the Book – Galatians 1:6-10

Galatians 1
6 I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel—
7 not that there is another one, but there are some who trouble you and want to distort the gospel of Christ.
8 But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed.
9 As we have said before, so now I say again: If anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to the one you received, let him be accursed.
10 For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant[slave] of Christ.

Poetry: Literary work in which special intensity is given to the expression of feelings and ideas by the use of
distinctive style and rhythm.

I am astonished
you in the grace of Christ,
are so quickly deserting him
who called you,
turning to a different gospel—
to the one we preached to you.
Not that there is another one!
There are some who trouble you
to distort the gospel of Christ.
Let him be accursed.

Now,
I say again:
If we or an angel from heaven should preach
a gospel contrary to the one you received,
let him be accursed.

I would not be a servant[slave] of Christ, or of God
if I were still trying to please man,
seeking the approval of man.