Galatians 5:5,6 - Joseph Benson’s Commentary on the Old and New Testaments

Bible Comments

For we Who believe in Christ, and are his true disciples, having been savingly enlightened in the knowledge of the truth; do, through the influences of the Spirit Without any of these carnal ordinances; wait for In sure confidence of obtaining; the hope of righteousness That is, the righteousness we hope for, and the full reward of it; by faith The only way in which these blessings can be attained; for it is through faith that we receive this righteousness of God, Philippians 3:9; and by faith we shall obtain the reward. For in Christ Jesus According to the institution which he hath established, according to the tenor of the Christian covenant, or with respect to our having an interest in and union with him; neither circumcision With the most punctual observance of the law; nor uncircumcision With the most exact heathen morality; availeth any thing To our present justification or eternal salvation; but faith alone, even that faith which worketh by love That persuasion of, and confidence in, the love of God to us, manifested in his giving Christ to die for us, and in pardoning and accepting us through Christ, which produces in us love to God in return; and obedience, the fruit of this love, and which worketh in us all inward holiness, and worketh by us all outward holiness. “The account which the apostle here gives us of faith,” says Macknight, “deserves attention. He does not say that it consists in the mere speculative belief of the truths of the gospel, nor in a confident persuasion, taken up any how, that we are actually justified, or that Christ hath died for us in particular. These things are nowhere in Scripture represented as constituting justifying faith; and they who trust to them delude themselves. The faith which is counted for righteousness, according to St. Paul, is such a belief [in Christ and] the truth, as worketh in the mind of the believer by love, and maketh him a new creature, Galatians 6:15. The apostle called the attention of the Galatians to this operation of faith, because they were deficient in love to each other, Galatians 5:15.”

Galatians 5:5-6

5 For we through the Spirit wait for the hope of righteousness by faith.

6 For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision; but faith which worketh by love.