5 For freedom 1 Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not be subject again to the yoke 2 of slavery. 2 Listen! I, Paul, tell you that if you let yourselves be circumcised, Christ will be of no benefit to you at all! 3 And I testify again to every man who lets himself be circumcised that he is obligated to obey 3 the whole law. 4 You who are trying to be declared righteous 4 by the law have been alienated 5 from Christ; you have fallen away from grace! 5 For through the Spirit, by faith, we wait expectantly for the hope of righteousness. 6 For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision carries any weight – the only thing that matters is faith working through love. 6
7 You were running well; who prevented you from obeying 7 the truth? 8 This persuasion 8 does not come from the one who calls you! 9 A little yeast makes the whole batch of dough rise! 9 10 I am confident 10 in the Lord that you will accept no other view. 11 But the one who is confusing 12 you will pay the penalty, 13 whoever he may be. 11 Now, brothers and sisters, 14 if I am still preaching circumcision, why am I still being persecuted? 15 In that case the offense of the cross 16 has been removed. 17 12 I wish those agitators 18 would go so far as to 19 castrate themselves! 20
13 For you were called to freedom, brothers and sisters; 21 only do not use your freedom as an opportunity to indulge your flesh, 22 but through love serve one another. 23 14 For the whole law can be summed up in a single commandment, 24 namely, “You must love your neighbor as yourself.” 25 15 However, if you continually bite and devour one another, 26 beware that you are not consumed 27 by one another. 16 But I say, live 28 by the Spirit and you will not carry out the desires of the flesh. 29 17 For the flesh has desires that are opposed to the Spirit, and the Spirit has desires 30 that are opposed to the flesh, for these are in opposition to 31 each other, so that you cannot do what you want. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. 19 Now the works of the flesh 32 are obvious: 33 sexual immorality, impurity, depravity, 20 idolatry, sorcery, 34 hostilities, 35 strife, 36 jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish rivalries, dissensions, 37 factions, 21 envying, 38 murder, 39 drunkenness, carousing, 40 and similar things. I am warning you, as I had warned you before: Those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God!
22 But the fruit of the Spirit 41 is love, 42 joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 43 23 gentleness, and 44 self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24 Now those who belong to Christ 45 have crucified the flesh 46 with its passions 47 and desires. 25 If we live by the Spirit, let us also behave in accordance with 48 the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, 49 provoking 50 one another, being jealous 51 of one another.
6 Brothers and sisters, 1 if a person 2 is discovered in some sin, 3 you who are spiritual 4 restore such a person in a spirit of gentleness. 5 Pay close attention 6 to yourselves, so that you are not tempted too. 2 Carry one another’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ. 3 For if anyone thinks he is something when he is nothing, he deceives himself. 4 Let each one examine 7 his own work. Then he can take pride 8 in himself and not compare himself with 9 someone else. 5 For each one will carry 10 his own load.
6 Now the one who receives instruction in the word must share all good things with the one who teaches 11 it. 7 Do not be deceived. God will not be made a fool. 12 For a person 13 will reap what he sows, 8 because the person who sows to his own flesh 14 will reap corruption 15 from the flesh, 16 but the one who sows to the Spirit will reap eternal life from the Spirit. 9 So we must not grow weary 17 in doing good, for in due time we will reap, if we do not give up. 18 10 So then, 19 whenever we have an opportunity, let us do good to all people, and especially to those who belong to the family of faith. 20
11 See what big letters I make as I write to you with my own hand!
12 Those who want to make a good showing in external matters 21 are trying to force you to be circumcised. They do so 22 only to avoid being persecuted 23 for the cross of Christ. 13 For those who are circumcised do not obey the law themselves, but they want you to be circumcised so that they can boast about your flesh. 24 14 But may I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which 25 the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world. 15 For 26 neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for 27 anything; the only thing that matters is a new creation! 28 16 And all who will behave 29 in accordance with this rule, peace and mercy be on them, and on the Israel of God. 30
17 From now on let no one cause me trouble, for I bear the marks of Jesus on my body. 31
18 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be 32 with your spirit, brothers and sisters. 33 Amen.
1 The revelation of Jesus Christ, 1 which God gave him to show his servants 2 what must happen very soon. 3 He made it clear 4 by sending his angel to his servant 5 John, 2 who then 6 testified to everything that he saw concerning the word of God and the testimony about 7 Jesus Christ. 3 Blessed is the one who reads the words of this 8 prophecy aloud, 9 and blessed are 10 those who hear and obey 11 the things written in it, because the time is near! 12
4 From John, 13 to the seven churches that are in the province of Asia: 14 Grace and peace to you 15 from “he who is,” 16 and who was, and who is still to come, 17 and from the seven spirits who are before his throne, 5 and from Jesus Christ – the faithful 18 witness, 19 the firstborn from among the dead, the ruler over the kings of the earth. To the one who loves us and has set us free 20 from our sins at the cost of 21 his own blood 6 and has appointed 22 us as a kingdom, 23 as priests 24 serving his God and Father – to him be the glory and the power for ever and ever! 25 Amen.
7 (Look! He is returning with the clouds, 26
and every eye will see him,
even 27 those who pierced him, 28
and all the tribes 29 on the earth will mourn because 30 of him.
This will certainly come to pass! 31 Amen.) 32
8 “I am the Alpha and the Omega,” 33 says the Lord God – the one who is, and who was, and who is still to come – the All-Powerful! 34
9 I, John, your brother and the one who shares 35 with you in the persecution, kingdom, and endurance that 36 are in Jesus, was on the island called Patmos because of the word of God and the testimony about Jesus. 37 10 I was in the Spirit 38 on the Lord’s Day 39 when 40 I heard behind me a loud voice like a trumpet, 11 saying: “Write in a book what you see and send it to the seven churches – to Ephesus, 41 Smyrna, 42 Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea.”
12 I 43 turned to see whose voice was speaking to me, 44 and when I did so, 45 I saw seven golden lampstands, 13 and in the midst of the lampstands was one like a son of man. 46 He was dressed in a robe extending down to his feet and he wore a wide golden belt 47 around his chest. 14 His 48 head and hair were as white as wool, even as white as snow, 49 and his eyes were like a fiery 50 flame. 15 His feet were like polished bronze 51 refined 52 in a furnace, and his voice was like the roar 53 of many waters. 16 He held 54 seven stars in his right hand, and a sharp double-edged sword extended out of his mouth. His 55 face shone like the sun shining at full strength. 17 When 56 I saw him I fell down at his feet as though I were dead, but 57 he placed his right hand on me and said: “Do not be afraid! I am the first and the last, 18 and the one who lives! I 58 was dead, but look, now I am alive – forever and ever – and I hold the keys of death and of Hades! 59 19 Therefore write what you saw, what is, and what will be after these things. 60 20 The mystery of the seven stars that you saw in my right hand and the seven golden lampstands is this: 61 The seven stars are the angels 62 of the seven churches and the seven lampstands are the seven churches.