Scripture:

[2] Let me ask you only this: Did you receive the Spirit by works of the law or by hearing with faith? [3] Are you so foolish? Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the flesh?

[5] Does he who supplies the Spirit to you and works miracles among you do so by works of the law, or by hearing with faith—

Observation:

Paul is frustrated.

The Galatian churches were getting confused with Jewish Christians demanding things like circumcision as following the laws of the Torah in order to be in God’s family.  This was totally against what Paul was preaching.  It was a wrong gospel.

Application:

Just as Paul is lambasting the Galatians for, we all need to be smacked back to reality once in awhile.  We hear it over and over – it is not by works, or by following the law, but by faith, trust and devotion to Jesus as the Son of God,  that we are justified.  As much as we all know that, we slip anyway.  Does this sound familiar?  God, I have done this to serve you in this way, why are You not blessing me in the way I asked?  God, I have been faithful and have prayed for this, why have You not given it to me?  Aren’t You listening?  Don’t You care about me God?

We were justified by faith alone, it had nothing at all to do with our following the law.  The process is the other way around.  It had everything to do with Jesus dying for us and our faith in Him.   First we are saved.  Then, as we follow Jesus the process of sanctification sets us apart, and a byproduct of that is that we follow His will for our lives and serve Him with our outward actions.

As true believers, we received salvation through faith.  As we follow Jesus, we find joy in abiding by His will and find joy in being set apart and living within His will.  While it has nothing to do with following the laws of the Torah, is following God’s will following the law?  Maybe, but again, it’s not because we are good Christians that we receive God’s grace.  It is by faith alone.  From faith comes our willingness and joy from doing what is right, not the other way around.

Prayer:

Lord thank You for my salvation and for leaving me with Your Spirit, living in me, to guide me.  Let me glorify You in all I do and let my faith never falter.  As I stumble through this life, help me become more and more like you – living for You, serving You, and sharing the gospel.  In Your glorious name I pray. Amen.

 

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