Foolish Galatians - Don't Be One (2)

  • In chapter 3, Paul calls the Galatians foolish. Foolish for what? For leaving the grace of Christ and going back to relating to God based on their performance. He also calls them bewitched. Why did they go back into legalism after they had originally put faith in Jesus alone and received all that God had for them through faith in Jesus? Good question.

    So the verses following in chapter 3 point out the real purpose of the law. It wasn’t to help them live holier lives. It was to point out their sin. To bring us to the end of ourselves and our self righteousness. It brought condemnation on us so we would never come into the deception that we could relate to God based on our own performance. Amazingly, the average Christian today has totally missed this fact and instead embraces the law as a good thing. The best thing you can do for God is to embrace what Jesus has already done for you.

    The law would be good if we could keep it, but we can’t. A failure to the tiniest detail of the law makes us guilty of all. Instead of receiving the blessing of the grace of God and the gift of righteousness, people opt for legalism and religion where one small failure brings the curse instead. The only way out of the curse is through faith in Christ alone. He bore the curse and became the curse for us.

    Galatians 3:13 says – Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree”.

    So, to begin summarizing, in chapter 5 Paul starts by saying (vs 1) “Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage”. The yoke of bondage he is speaking of is the law. He’s saying don’t go back to trying to please God by adhering to rules and regulations. The thing that pleases God is faith (Hebrews 11:6).

    In verse 2 Paul says “Behold, I Paul say unto you, that if ye be circumcised, Christ shall profit you nothing. Now that’s radical. That’s saying that if our trust is in something that we do to make us accepted with God then what Jesus has done for us will profit us nothing.

    Yet, this is exactly what’s happening in the lives of many people today. They know about Christ. They believe He purchased their forgiveness of sins by His blood, but they think they have to obtain forgiveness through some merit of their own. That voids what Christ has done for them. They will get what they deserve, instead of what Christ did for them. It’s a shame they have fallen from grace back into trusting in themselves.

    Does all this grace mean we can just live in sin? No, but it does mean God will still love us the same even if we sin, and we will. It also means we are not set free to sin, but we are set free from sin.

    Paul made it clear in gal 5:13 that holy living is still the right way to live. Here it is – “For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another”.

    Grace does not cause people to live in sin. It frees them from the paralyzing effects of guilt and condemnation so that they can live holier accidentally now than they ever did on purpose before.

    What happens if a Christian takes God’s grace for granted and lives in sin? Paul addressed that in verse 15. “But if ye bite and devour one another, take heed that ye be not consumed one of another”.

    He’s saying that there are still consequences to sin, but those consequences don’t come from God. Living in sin opens the door to the devil and he will eat your lunch and pop the bag.

    As much as possible, we live holy but we never do so in order to earn anything from God. That all comes by and through His great love and grace toward us. 

    When we do sin we don’t come under condemnation about it and let the devil separate us from God. We simply thank God for his forgiveness, turn around clean and refreshed, headed in the right direction, all the while enjoying the unbroken love and fellowship of God. Just look at these two sets of scriptures and show me where performance, or self-condemnation plays a part at all in our lives in Christ.

    Romans 8:1,2.

    1 So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus. And because you belong to him, the power of the life-giving Spirit has freed you from the power of sin that leads to death.

    There is NO condemnation. That means none, zero, zip, nada, NONE. The benefit of belonging to Christ is that you are freed from the power of sin that leads to death. It couldn’t be any clearer. It takes help to miss it and you’ll get plenty of that kind of help from the same types of people that “helped” the Galatians. It’s called religion. Performance based Christianity. Works oriented behavioral doctrine. It’s false, it’s wrong, it’s unscriptural, and it never has and never will work. Only belief in the finished work at the cross and the blood of Jesus can make you totally free.

    Romans 8:38,39.

    38 And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. 39 No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.

    Paul didn’t leave anything out. As a matter of fact, after listing all the possibilities he said “indeed, nothing in all creation will EVER be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.

    Stop beating yourself up. Fall into the absolute freedom of the love and grace of God that is freely given to all who receive. Don’t be a foolish Galatian. Grace and Peace.

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  • Crystal Roeden
    Crystal Roeden I believe the law was given to set Israel apart from all the other people around them and in the areas where they were going. Can you imagine what ONE case of VD in a small camp would have done? And those people where they were going were heathens. I...  more
    Nov 13 - Report