Galatians – Freedom in Christ
We just celebrated Resurrection Sunday with gratitude, praise and worship of the One who saved us all from all sin. Many gathered in sanctuaries across America to hear the Good News. Many first time visitors gathered at our church to hear a clearly, understandable break down of John 3:16 to those who may have never heard what it means and/or needed a reminder of WHO frees us from the bondage of our sins. Our sins, nailed to a Cross, to be remembered no more. We are redeemed!!
Many responded to that message. Now, two days later, I wonder how many have fallen back into bondage thinking. This is the immature attitude that causes us to think we need to now work hard “to be good” to please others and hopefully please God. Satan will have a hey day with this thinking. We cannot “be good” by ourselves which will bring on the defeating notion that we are not good enough for God.
We are imperfect people saved by a perfect God with perfect forgiveness. God works His salvation freedom into us and through us day by day, hour by hour. We will mess up. He knows we will. He is there to pick us up and continue to teach us how to mess up less often with an assurance that He is with us always. He will never let go of His love for us. His Holy Spirt with show us the course corrections to make on our journey. So, all our trust must be in Christ. Our focus on Christ. We look ahead, not behind. Nothing more, nothing less. We are crazy to think otherwise.
Paul explains it well to the crazy believers in Galatia who have been led by the religious cronies to go back to following the religious rules, trying to dot every i and cross every t without building an intimate, open and free relationship with Jesus Christ, Lord and Savior. Listen in as we read. Imagine how this applies readily to we crazy Christians today. Make a decision with a commitment to focus and follow Jesus. No turning back, no turning back.
Galatians 3, The Message (Part one)
Trust in Christ, Not the Law
Galatians 3 graceYou crazy Galatians! Did someone put a hex on you? Have you taken leave of your senses? Something crazy has happened, for it’s obvious that you no longer have the crucified Jesus in clear focus in your lives. His sacrifice on the cross was certainly set before you clearly enough.
2-4 Let me put this question to you: How did your new life begin? Was it by working your heads off to please God? Or was it by responding to God’s Message to you? Are you going to continue this craziness? For only crazy people would think they could complete by their own efforts what was begun by God. If you weren’t smart enough or strong enough to begin it, how do you suppose you could perfect it? Did you go through this whole painful learning process for nothing? It is not yet a total loss, but it certainly will be if you keep this up!
5-6 Answer this question: Does the God who lavishly provides you with his own presence, his Holy Spirit, working things in your lives you could never do for yourselves, does he do these things because of your strenuous moral striving or because you trust him to do them in you? Don’t these things happen among you just as they happened with Abraham? He believed God, and that act of belief was turned into a life that was right with God.
7-8 Is it not obvious to you that persons who put their trust in Christ (not persons who put their trust in the law!) are like Abraham: children of faith? It was all laid out beforehand in Scripture that God would set things right with non-Jews by faith. Scripture anticipated this in the promise to Abraham: “All nations will be blessed in you.”
9-10 So those now who live by faith are blessed along with Abraham, who lived by faith—this is no new doctrine! And that means that anyone who tries to live by his own effort, independent of God, is doomed to failure. Scripture backs this up: “Utterly cursed is every person who fails to carry out every detail written in the Book of the law.”
11-12 The obvious impossibility of carrying out such a moral program should make it plain that no one can sustain a relationship with God that way. The person who lives in right relationship with God does it by embracing what God arranges for him. Doing things for God is the opposite of entering into what God does for you. Habakkuk had it right: “The person who believes God, is set right by God—and that’s the real life.” Rule-keeping does not naturally evolve into living by faith, but only perpetuates itself in more and more rule-keeping, a fact observed in Scripture: “The one who does these things [rule-keeping] continues to live by them.”
13-14 Christ redeemed us from that self-defeating, cursed life by absorbing it completely into himself. Do you remember the Scripture that says, “Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree”? That is what happened when Jesus was nailed to the cross: He became a curse, and at the same time dissolved the curse. And now, because of that, the air is cleared and we can see that Abraham’s blessing is present and available for non-Jews, too. We are all able to receive God’s life, his Spirit, in and with us by believing—just the way Abraham received it.
Galatians 3 recoveringTell us how you really feel, Paul! What do we learn?
–It is ONLY by the grace of God, through Jesus Christ, that we are saved from sin.
–We do not work for our salvation, it is a gift. That way we cannot boast about what we did to get it!
–We live life with focus and clarity because of Christ living in us!
–By His Holy Spirit we rise from the ashes of defeat to live as free, redeemed joyful believers!
–His amazing grace is for every race! (Thank you pastor for that one!)
–Don’t be crazy…be committed.
“The person who lives in right relationship with God does it by embracing what God arranges for him. Doing things for God is the opposite of entering into what God does for you. Habakkuk had it right: “The person who believes God, is set right by God—and that’s the real life.”
Dear Heavenly Father,
Thank you, thank you, thank you for saving our souls, for making us whole again, for restoring our relationship with You and for remembering our sins no more. What a Savior! What a mighty God we love and want to serve, not for kudos, but from a place of humble gratitude. I love you with all my heart, mind and soul. Continue to transform me. Transform Your church. Transform the world. Set right. Wow. Free to live redeemed!
In Jesus Name, Amen
Galatians 3 justifiedAnd I’m singing…Resurrecting!
The head that once was crowned with thorns
Is crowned with glory now
The Savior knelt to wash our feet
Now at His feet we bow
The One who wore our sin and shame
Now robed in majesty
The radiance of perfect love
Now shines for all to see
Your name, Your name
Is victory
All praise, will rise
To Christ, our king
Your name, Your name
Is victory
All praise, will rise
To Christ, our king
The fear that held us now gives way
To Him who is our peace
His final breath upon the cross
Is now alive in me
Your name, Your name
Is victory
All praise, will rise
To Christ, our king
Your name, Your name
Is victory
All praise, will rise
To Christ, our king
By Your spirit I will rise
From the ashes of defeat
The resurrected King, is resurrecting me
In Your name I come alive
To declare…

About randscallawayffm

Randy and Susan co founded Finding Focus Ministries in 2006. Their goal as former full time pastors, is to serve and provide spiritual encouragement and focus to those on the "front lines" of ministry. Extensive experience being on both sides of ministry, paid and volunteer, on the mission fields of other countries as well as the United States, helps them bring a different perspective to those who need it most. Need a lift? Call us 260 229 2276.
This entry was posted in Blessings, Christian Living, Christian Perspective, Embrace, Encouragement, Faith, Forgiveness, Galatians, Grace, Holy Spirit, Hope, insight, investments, Jesus, joy, Leadership, Listen, lost but found, Love, Macedonian Call, marriage, Mercy, ministry, Praise, Prayer, Salvation, Searching, Teaching, Thanksgiving, Training, Transformation, trust in God, Truth, Unconditional love, waiting on God, wisdom and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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