If someone gave you a $100,000,000 home, ranch and estate that would be great right? With a gift like that though comes some responsibility. It takes a lot of money to maintain an estate that large. The person that had the means to give you that estate would have to also help you maintain it as well.
That is a poor illustration of what salvation is like. The most incredible and extravagant gift that we can be given is the gift of salvation. “Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed upon us that we should be called the sons of God!” We can’t earn earn our salvation on our own, nor could we keep it our own. He has to give us the power to please Him and glorify Him as well.
Paul began churches in Antioch, Iconium, Lystra, and Derbe. As a church planting missionary he had seen people in these cities come to faith in Christ, experience Holy Spirit lead life change in incredible ways. So when Paul gets to chapter 3 of the book of Galatians he begins to remind the Galatians about how they came to faith in Christ. He uses very strong language because the situation is so dire. They are believing things that change the gospel!
1 O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth, crucified among you?
Do you not remember what you believed about the death of Jesus? Why would Jesus have to die if you could get right with God on your own?
2 This only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?3 Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?4 Have ye suffered so many things in vain? if it be yet in vain.
Paul calls them to answer this question- If you were Saved by faith, why do you think you have to continue to be saved and grow in God by works? You didn’t do anything to earn your salvation. Why do you think you must do something to keep your salvation?
5 He therefore that ministereth to you the Spirit, and worketh miracles among you, doeth he it by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?
Does God respond with good things to our faith or to our works? What is the answer? The hearing of faith!
So how do we apply this text?:
-We don’t just need God for salvation. We need Him for life!
When was the last time you believed that God will give you the victory over sin in your life? When was the last time you asked Him to help you fight sin and believed that he would?
-We need to be grateful for God’s grace, in spite of our sin, in response to our faith.
Thank God for His grace today.