Galatians 1:14 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Galatians 1:14, NIV: I was advancing in Judaism beyond many of my own age among my people and was extremely zealous for the traditions of my fathers.

Galatians 1:14, ESV: 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.

Galatians 1:14, KJV: And profited in the Jews' religion above many my equals in mine own nation, being more exceedingly zealous of the traditions of my fathers.

Galatians 1:14, NASB: and I was advancing in Judaism beyond many of my contemporaries among my countrymen, being more extremely zealous for my ancestral traditions.

Galatians 1:14, NLT: I was far ahead of my fellow Jews in my zeal for the traditions of my ancestors.

Galatians 1:14, CSB: I advanced in Judaism beyond many contemporaries among my people, because I was extremely zealous for the traditions of my ancestors.

What does Galatians 1:14 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Paul is sharing his personal story to make the case that he received the gospel as he taught it to the Galatians directly from Jesus Christ. He reminded them of his great fury and violence against Christians when he was still following Judaism. He had been motivated to do whatever it took to oppose the name of Jesus (Acts 26:9).

Now he reminds them of his great success as a Pharisee (Acts 23:6). He was so enthusiastic, so zealous for the traditions of his fathers, that he was advancing beyond other Pharisees his own age. Paul thrived in Judaism.

What is his point in telling them this? When it came to comparing their "Jewish credentials," these Judaizers trying to discredit Paul had nothing on him. He had studied and mastered all the same texts they had. He, too, started out in Jerusalem, though he didn't learn about the gospel there. He knew everything they knew and more. Next, he will show why he turned his back on all of his advancement to follow the One he had been persecuting.