“What then was the blessing you enjoyed? For I bear you witness that, if possible, you would have plucked out your own eyes and given them to me”
What then was the blessing you enjoyed?
“Blessing” indicates an ascription of blessing rather than a state, to pronounce one blessed. The Galatians counted themselves blessed when they first heard the gospel of grace. What has happened to that conviction? It does not appear that they hold that belief any longer. They formerly received Paul with a sense of blessedness. What has happened? They no longer view him and his message as a blessing, whereas once his physical appearance did not bother them (Galatians 4:14), now they are repulsed by his message of grace.
For I bear you witness that, if possible,
Paul did not say it was possible for the Galatians to pluck out their eyes. The “if” in the Greek means “if, and it is not so.” The “if” is contrary to the fact “if.” Paul speaks hypothetically of the time when they first grasped grace as a reality. At one time, they would have gone to great lengths for the apostle Paul. Now they follow legalistic leaders. They are both unstable and fickle. They went from deep love for Paul to intense hatred. They are now his enemies (Galatians 4:16).
you would have plucked out your own eyes and given them to me
There was a time when the Galatians would have torn out their eyes for Paul. This may indicate that Paul’s physical problem was an eye problem. Paul may speak with hyperbole, but the idea is clear that they had a great love for him when they first became Christians.
“And I will very gladly spend and be spent for your souls; though the more abundantly I love you, the less I am loved” (2 Corinthians 12:15).
Whenever we abandon the principle of grace, we become spiritually fickle.
Whenever we lose sight of the wonder of the gospel of grace, our hearts will grow cold toward God. Our zeal will decrease. Legalism always robs us of blessedness and spiritual prosperity.