Vs 8 Formerly, when you did not know God, you were enslaved to those that by nature are not gods.
Vs 9 But now that you have come to know God, or rather to be known by God, how can you turn back again to the weak and worthless elementary principles of the world, whose slaves you want to be once more?
Paul is clearly frustrated with the Galatians.
He describes their former selves very bluntly, “you did not know God” and “you were enslaved”!
He cannot understand their actions now to go back to old ways of thinking and behaving.
“How can you turn back now?”
And he has blunt terms for their old ways, as well … “weak” and “worthless”!
He asks two very stark questions.
One about them, “You want to be slaves once more?”
One about himself, “Have I become your enemy for telling you the truth?”
Old ways are often seemingly easy ways. “Old habits die hard”, as they say.
There are patterns of behavior that persist … “muscle memory” … even of the mind.
I need to ask myself … Do I have parts of my “old ways” and “old thinking” that I keep going back to?
I then need to ask myself if I would describe them in the same terms Paul does?
Do I “turn back” to things that are “weak” and “worthless”?
If I keep turning back to them, I must get some value from them. Right?
But whatever value I think there is … is “weak”.
I must keep the mindset that I “know God” and I am “known by God”.
This should change everything … especially how I value things that fill my mind and life.
I must keep in mind that everything is different now.
So I must live with a “But now …” perspective.
That’s the phrase that stands out to me from Paul …”But now …”
It’s almost to say, “I can see how you would think and act like that before you knew God … BUT NOW?!!”
So, whenever I am tempted to previous ways and previous thinking, what’s really at work?
I am actually devaluing God, Himself!
If I am engaging in weak and worthless things, then I am functioning declaring God “worth less”.
Fortunately, there is always a … “but now”!
Because of grace, there is always available a “turning back” to God from the “turning back” to the old ways.
But now … that I know and am known by God!
Thank you, God, for your grace
Help me always see the worth of it “now”
Help me, Holy Spirit, see truth and run to it
In Jesus name,