Galatians 2:18
Parallel Verses
New International Version
If I rebuild what I destroyed, then I really would be a lawbreaker.

New Living Translation
Rather, I am a sinner if I rebuild the old system of law I already tore down.

English Standard Version
For if I rebuild what I tore down, I prove myself to be a transgressor.

New American Standard Bible
"For if I rebuild what I have once destroyed, I prove myself to be a transgressor.

King James Bible
For if I build again the things which I destroyed, I make myself a transgressor.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
If I rebuild the system I tore down, I show myself to be a lawbreaker.

International Standard Version
For if I rebuild something that I tore down, I demonstrate that I am a wrongdoer.

NET Bible
But if I build up again those things I once destroyed, I demonstrate that I am one who breaks God's law.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
For if I build those things again that I once destroyed, I have shown about myself that I violate The Covenant.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
If I rebuild something that I've torn down, I admit that I was wrong to tear it down.

Jubilee Bible 2000
For if I build again the things which I destroyed, I make myself a rebel.

King James 2000 Bible
For if I build again the things which I destroyed, I make myself a transgressor.

American King James Version
For if I build again the things which I destroyed, I make myself a transgressor.

American Standard Version
For if I build up again those things which I destroyed, I prove myself a transgressor.

Douay-Rheims Bible
For if I build up again the things which I have destroyed, I make myself a prevaricator.

Darby Bible Translation
For if the things I have thrown down, these I build again, I constitute myself a transgressor.

English Revised Version
For if I build up again those things which I destroyed, I prove myself a transgressor.

Webster's Bible Translation
For if I build again the things which I destroyed, I make myself a transgressor.

Weymouth New Testament
Why, if I am now rebuilding that structure of sin which I had demolished, I am thereby constituting myself a transgressor;

World English Bible
For if I build up again those things which I destroyed, I prove myself a law-breaker.

Young's Literal Translation
for if the things I threw down, these again I build up, a transgressor I set myself forth;
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

2:15-19 Paul, having thus shown he was not inferior to any apostle, not to Peter himself, speaks of the great foundation doctrine of the gospel. For what did we believe in Christ? Was it not that we might be justified by the faith of Christ? If so, is it not foolish to go back to the law, and to expect to be justified by the merit of moral works, or sacrifices, or ceremonies? The occasion of this declaration doubtless arose from the ceremonial law; but the argument is quite as strong against all dependence upon the works of the moral law, as respects justification. To give the greater weight to this, it is added, But if, while we seek to be justified by Christ, we ourselves also are found sinners, is Christ the minister of sin? This would be very dishonourable to Christ, and also very hurtful to them. By considering the law itself, he saw that justification was not to be expected by the works of it, and that there was now no further need of the sacrifices and cleansings of it, since they were done away in Christ, by his offering up himself a sacrifice for us. He did not hope or fear any thing from it; any more than a dead man from enemies. But the effect was not a careless, lawless life. It was necessary, that he might live to God, and be devoted to him through the motives and grace of the gospel. It is no new prejudice, though a most unjust one, that the doctrine of justification by faith alone, tends to encourage people in sin. Not so, for to take occasion from free grace, or the doctrine of it, to live in sin, is to try to make Christ the minister of sin, at any thought of which all Christian hearts would shudder.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 18. - For if I build again the things which I destroyed (εἰ γὰρ α} κατέλυσα ταῦτα πάλιν οἰκοδομῶ); for if I am building up again the things which I pulled down. I make myself a transgressor (παραβάτην ἐμαυτὸν συνίστημι [or, συνιστάνω another form of the same verb]); a transgressor is what I am showing my own self to be. I must be wrong one way or the other; if I am right now, was wrong then; and from the very nature of the case now in hand, wrong exceedingly; no less than an absolute transgressor. This word "transgressor" denotes, not one who merely happens to break, perchance inadverdently, some precept of the Law, but one who, perhaps in consequence of even one act of wilful transgression, is to be regarded as trampling upon the authority of the Law altogether (comp. Romans 2:25, 27; James 2:9, 11, which are the only places of the New Testament in which the word occurs; it is therefore a full equivalent to the word "sinner" of ver. 17). The Greek verb συνιστάνω, "to put forward in a clear light," is used similarly in 2 Corinthians 6:4; 2 Corinthians 7:11. It is much debated, and is certainly nowise clear, how far down in the chapter the rebuke addressed to St. Peter extends. If it does not reach to the end of the chapter, as some think it does, the break may be very well placed at the end of this verse. For this verse clearly relates to St. Peter, whether actually addressed to him or not; notwithstanding that the verbs are in the hypothetical first person singular, they cannot be taken as referred to St. Paul, not being at all applicable to his case. On the other hand, with the nineteenth verse the first person is plainly used by St. Paul with reference to his own self, which is indeed marked by the emphatic ἐγὼ with which it opens.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

For if I build again the things which I destroyed,.... Which must be understood not of good things, for formerly he destroyed the faith of the Gospel, at least as much as in him lay, and now he built it up, established, and defended it; in doing which he did no evil, or made himself a transgressor, but the reverse; he showed himself a faithful minister of Christ: but of things not lawful, such as the rites and ceremonies of the law of Moses, which were now abrogated, and he had declared to be so all over the Gentile world; and therefore should he go about to establish these things as necessary to salvation, or teach men to join the observance of them with Christ's righteousness for justification, then, says he,

I make myself a transgressor: for he could not be otherwise, be the case how it would with respect to the abrogation, or non-abrogation of the law; for if the law was not abolished, then he made himself a transgressor of it; by neglecting it himself, and teaching others to do so; and if it was abolished, then it must be criminal in him to enforce the observance of it as necessary to a sinner's justification before God. Now though the apostle transfers this to himself, and spoke in his own person to decline all invidious reflections and characters; yet he tacitly regards Peter, and his conduct, who had been taught by the vision the abrogation of the ceremonial law, and acted accordingly by conversing and eating with the Gentiles, and had declared that law to be an insupportable yoke of bondage, which the Gentiles were not obliged to come under; and yet now, by his practice and example, built up and established those very things he had before destroyed, and therefore could not exculpate himself, from being a transgressor: or these things may regard sins and immoralities in life and conversation; and the apostle's sense be, that should he, or any other, take encouragement to sin from the doctrine of free justification by the righteousness of Christ, as if he was the author and minister of sin, and allowed persons in it; this would be to establish sin, which the righteousness of Christ justifies from, and engage in a living in sin, to which, by Christ's righteousness, they are dead unto; than which, nothing can be, a greater contradiction, and which must unavoidably make them not only transgressors of the law, by sinning against it, but apostates, as the word here used signifies, from the Gospel; such must act quite contrary to the nature, use, and design of the Gospel in general, and this doctrine in particular, which teaches men to deny ungodliness and worldly lusts, and that being dead to sin, they should live unto righteousness.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

18. Greek, "For if the things which I overthrew (by the faith of Christ), those very things I build up again (namely, legal righteousness, by subjecting myself to the law), I prove myself (literally, 'I commend myself') a transgressor." Instead of commending yourself as you sought to do (Ga 2:12, end), you merely commend yourself as a transgressor. The "I" is intended by Paul for Peter to take to himself, as it is his case, not Paul's own, that is described. A "transgressor" is another word for "sinner" (in Ga 2:17), for "sin is the transgression of the law." You, Peter, by now asserting the law to be obligatory, are proving yourself a "sinner," or "transgressor," in your having set it aside by living as the Gentiles, and with them. Thus you are debarred by transgression from justification by the law, and you debar yourself from justification by Christ, since in your theory He becomes a minister of sin.

Galatians 2:18 Additional Commentaries
Context
Paul Confronts Peter
17"But if, while seeking to be justified in Christ, we ourselves have also been found sinners, is Christ then a minister of sin? May it never be! 18"For if I rebuild what I have once destroyed, I prove myself to be a transgressor. 19"For through the Law I died to the Law, so that I might live to God.…
Cross References
Romans 2:25
Circumcision has value if you observe the law, but if you break the law, you have become as though you had not been circumcised.

Romans 3:5
But if our unrighteousness brings out God's righteousness more clearly, what shall we say? That God is unjust in bringing his wrath on us? (I am using a human argument.)
Treasury of Scripture

For if I build again the things which I destroyed, I make myself a transgressor.

Galatians 2:4,5,12-16,21 And that because of false brothers unawares brought in, who came …

Galatians 4:9-12 But now, after that you have known God, or rather are known of God, …

Galatians 5:11 And I, brothers, if I yet preach circumcision, why do I yet suffer …

Romans 14:15 But if your brother be grieved with your meat, now walk you not charitably. …

1 Corinthians 8:11,12 And through your knowledge shall the weak brother perish, for whom …

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