Main point summary
Paul asks 6 rhetorical questions to persuade the Galatians of their folly and to prove that sanctification is by faith. Paul's implied argument can be outlined as 1. They have pulled the wool over your eyes, for Christ was so clearly shown to you to be crucified 2. You were justified by faith in Him and received the Spirit not by works of law 3. Are you that foolish? Think about your actions- you know the answer to Q2. 4. Are you so foolish to think that after starting by faith and the Spirit, Sanctification would be achieved by the flesh and returning to the law. 5. You're suffering for the gospel of grace was pointless if you now return to the law. 6. After asking the first five questions about the Galatians Paul concludes his argument by asking the final question from God's perspective. Colby Kinser shows the weight of the argument well "If it is foolish to assume that all other works of God in my life come from works of the flesh, how foolish is it to assume that He (God) will complete me by works of the flesh?". The conclusion of the matter is that God supplies the Spirit and works miracles among His people in response to their faith and not by their adherence to the law.
1 You foolish a Galatians,
Fact: O, foolish Galatians
who has bewitched you,
Interpretation: Q1 Who hoodwinked/bamboozled you ?
before whose eyes Jesus Christ b was publicly portrayed as crucified?
Ground: For it was before you very eyes that Jesus was openly portrayed as crucified
This is the only thing I want to find out from you:
Series/Idea: And this only I want to ask you:
did you receive the Spirit
Explanation/Action/: Q2 In what way did you receive the Holy Spirit
by the works of 1 the Law ,
Manner: By the works of the Law
or by 2 a hearing with faith ?
Alternative/Manner: Or by the hearing of faith
Are you so foolish?
Progression/Action: Q3 Are you so foolish?
Having begun 1 by the Spirit ,
Manner: That having started by the Spirit
are you now 2 being perfected by the flesh ?
Manner/Temporal: you are now taking it upon yourself to be completed by the flesh
Did you 1 suffer so many things in vain—
Idea: Q4 Have you suffered so much in vain -
a if indeed it was in vain?
Explanation: That is, if indeed it was in vain
So then, does He
Therefore Q5 how does He Do it?
who a provides you with the Spirit
(who supplies the Spirit to you
and b works 1 miracles among you, do it
Series: And works miraculously among you)
Subject Adjectival Clause
by the works of 2 the Law,
Manner: By works of the Law
or by 3 c hearing with faith?
Alternative/Manner or by the hearing of faith
Author Colby E. Kinser Five unanswered questions, chiastically centered on "Are you so foolish?" Answered then by a fifth (unanswered) question in v. 5. But unlike the first five questions that have man as the subject, this last question has God as the subject. If it is foolish to assume that all other works of God in my life come from works of the flesh, how foolish is it to assume that He will complete me by works of the flesh? This is also the first mention of the Spirit in Galatians.