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The Battle for the Good News

from Google Images

from Google Images

The question at this point is: why is circumcision (or anything we do) unable to make us right with God (Galatians 5:6; cf. 3:10, 21)? Just as the wages we earn have nothing to do with being a gift we receive, so circumcision or anything we do can have nothing to do with making us right before God, because righteousness is imputed (i.e. it is a gift), and what we do looks for a wage (reward for services rendered). It is Christ who makes us righteous (through grace, a gift), and we can only trust it is so, just as we trust that any gift we receive is entirely a gift—no strings attached. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 12, 2016 in Galatians

 

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Freedom and Authority

from Google Images

from Google Images

I may have freedom of religion while living under the authority of the American Constitution, but, if I choose to live under the authority of Iran, the American Constitution cannot profit me there, if I’m concerned about such freedom. Similarly, Christ cannot profit me, as far as freedom is concerned, if I choose to live under the Mosaic Law and trust in it for my salvation or my moral walk (Galatians 5:2). The Law doesn’t have power to give life, but it does have power to take it. Neither does the Law have power to make anyone righteous. It was never intended to have such power. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 10, 2016 in Galatians

 

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Standing Fast in Liberty

Yoke

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At this time Paul takes us from theology to ethics, from dogma to living out one’s faith. What would our being devoted to God, yet living without the Mosaic Law, look like? If the Mosaic Law is discarded as a premise for Christian conduct, what would happen to moral living? This was the problem that the New Testament Church had to answer, because it was, no doubt, put to us by both the legalists who opposed the believer’s posture, and the legalists who were genuinely interested in the answer. If law takes away real freedom, how does one keep from embracing the opposite extreme of living so freely that one becomes addicted to lust, greed, wrath and the like? Obviously, such behavior also takes away true freedom. The answer to this dilemma lies in maintaining the image of Christ within us, which is kept through faith as we shall see. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 8, 2016 in Galatians

 

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Hagar and Sarah According to Paul

Children of Promise

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In Galatians 4:21 Paul returns again to Scripture in order to conclude his argument about relationships. He asks those, who wish to embrace Judaism, if they really took seriously the claim the Law has upon them. Perhaps it is true that often we accept something that appears to be true, even Biblical, but we never really consider the consequences the truth under consideration has upon the truth as a whole. Certainly much of Judaism is based upon the word of God, yet Jesus called at least some of what Judaism taught “your tradition”, that is, tradition of men and said that it contradicted or took away the power of the word of God (Matthew 7:8, 13). Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 5, 2016 in Galatians

 

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Paul and Zealous Evangelism

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from Google Images

Jesus once revealed that some of the most zealous people in evangelism were those who tragically made their recipients or those who embraced their teaching twice the enemies of the Gospel than the offending teachers were (Matthew 23:15). What a testimony! How can anyone, who believes he is serving God, end up being an enemy of the work of God? I believe Paul addresses this very idea in his argument about relationships in Galatians, the fourth chapter. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 3, 2016 in Galatians

 

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Paul’s Argument of Relationships

from Google Images

from Google Images

In Galatians 4:12 and following Paul concludes his fifth argument for justification before God coming through faith in Christ and not through keeping the law. He does this by again pointing to Abraham. Anyone who shares the faith of Abraham is already his son and heir and doesn’t need to keep the law to make it so, whatever false teachers may say. The Law was given as a temporary custodian to prepare the Jews for the coming of Christ, but it was through Christ that both Jew and gentile would receive the blessings God promised to Abraham. The Law was to bring men to Christ by showing them that not only couldn’t they keep its demands, but its very nature tempted them to do those very things it told them not to do. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 1, 2016 in Galatians

 

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The Fullness of Time and the Gospel

from Google Images

from Google Images

In Galatians 4:4 Paul mentions something called the fullness of time. This was when God sent Jesus into the world. The time of the “coming of Jesus” was predicted 483 years earlier during the time of Daniel, which he records in his 70 Weeks Prophecy (Daniel 9:24-27). It was a time for which God had prepared the world—it was during the Pax Romana when the nations enjoyed relative peace and freedom of travel wasn’t hindered. It was a time when the Greek language was understood throughout the west and in parts of the east, so the Gospel could be understood by many. It was a time when sea travel was safe and roads, built to permit swift military travel throughout the Roman Empire, allowed very good personal travel throughout the civilized world. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on January 29, 2016 in Galatians

 

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