Galatians Day 10- Father Abraham had many sons…

Father_AbrahamIf you didn’t grow up in church or have never worked in Children’s ministry in the last 50 years or so, then you won’t get what I’m about to ask. Have you ever wondered why Father Abraham had many sons, why many sons had Father Abraham? Have you ever wondered why you are one of them, and so am I? Oh well, Let’s just praise the Lord. Seriously though, does the Bible say that you and I are Abraham’s children? I’m not Jewish. How can that be? Check out today’s verses…

Galatians 3:6-9

Even as Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness. (7) Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham. (8) And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed. (9) So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.

In verses 1-5 Paul appeals to the Galatians experience to help them understand that they are not made right with God by works but by faith. In today’s verses Paul appeals to scripture. The Legalists that were misleading the Galatians were misinterpreting the old testament using Abraham as an example. So Paul goes right to the Old Testament and talks about Abraham. He quotes Genesis 15:6, where Moses said that Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness. The word translated “accounted” means to put into ones account, to impute. The idea is that it wasn’t Abraham’s works that made his account with God balance. It was Abraham’s faith in God that God noticed and to which God responded. Paul goes on to say that in God’s way of thinking it is not being in the lineage of Abraham physically that matters to God. When someone gets right with God the way that Abraham did, by faith, they are blessed in Abraham.

Application:

  • We all have to be made right with God.
  • The two options we have are to try to be right with God by doing things, or by believing God.
  • God has made it clear that we are made right with Him by believing Him. We are made right with God by Faith. That is good news because anyone can have faith. We all put our faith in something.
  • If you’ve never put your faith for your salvation in Jesus Christ, I have to tell you what the Bible says– that’s the only shot you have at being right with God.
  • If you have put your faith in Christ, how about taking a moment today to thank God for this incredible gift?!

You’re Welcome.

Galatians Day 9- It’s All God

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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.

Galatians Day 8: Not more will power…More of God’s Power!

1117398599_b86f47800aDoes anyone else have a problem with will power or am I the only one? Have you ever tried to not eat an oreo that was staring you down? Have you ever said, “I’m not going to do it this time. I’m not going to do it this time. I’m not going to do it this time” and then walk into the situation and do the thing that you said you wouldn’t. We all have this problem!

The judaizers who had lead the Galatians astray were telling them that Jesus plus the good work of keeping the law is the way that they could be right with God. If that is true then we are in serious trouble, because we have to do that on our own. We have to use our will power. Thankfully, Paul obliterates this arguement in todays text.

16    Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.

This is the best news we can receive. If it were up to us to fully keep the rules to be right with God then none of us have a shot. But everyone exhibits faith in something. The person that fully leans into Christ’s death and ressurection to be right with God will be justified.

17    But if, while we seek to be justified by Christ, we ourselves also are found sinners, is therefore Christ the minister of sin? God forbid.

This is an understandable question. Since we’re justified by faith, does that mean we stop sinning? No. Then does this justification make the one who justifies us an enabler of our sin? Paul says, “May it never be!”

Why not Paul?

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

When we sin after we get saved it is us doing that and not God, so God is not the author of sin. In fact, God does something totally opposite after we have been justified. Look at verse 19…

19    For I through the law am dead to the law, that I might live unto God.20    I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.21    I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain. (Galatians 2:16–21)

When we are justified by Faith in Christ that is when Christ enables us to live in a way that glorifies Him. I’m crucified with Christ and I’m still alive. It’s not me that is alive by myself- Christ now lives in me and helps me to make right choices by changing my character from the inside.

If I could be saved, and if I could live rightly outside of Christ’s death and indwelling power then Christ’s death was for nothing.

Thankfully those who are in Christ have Christ helping us not only to be saved, but to also live to glorify God! Ask Him to help you live for Him today!