Today’s reading is: Gal. 4-6
Galatians Chapter Four
- Paul uses the metaphor of a child and a slave to communicate the blessings we have as Sons of God (Gal. 4:1-7).
- By returning to Judaistic legalism, the Galatian churches were returning to bondage (Gal. 4:8-11).
- Paul urges the Galatian churches to remember back to the sacrificial love and joy they had as new believers in Christ (Gal. 4:12-20).
- Paul contrasts Mt. Sinai & the present Jerusalem with the Jerusalem above in order to paint a Biblical allegory for the grace blessings of the Church in contrast with the law-bondage of Israel (Gal. 4:21–31).
Galatians Chapter Five
- Paul amplifies the message of Chapter Four. Our freedom in the Church is not just a freedom from Law, but a spirit-led freedom from the flesh (Gal. 5:1ff.).
- A believer in the Church who strives to fulfill the Law will receive no empowerment from the One Who fulfilled the Law (Gal. 5:2-4).
- Legalism severs a believer from the grace power system that Christ has provided for him.
- Legalism is a “fall from grace” in terms of the empowerment and benefit for our daily justification. This has nothing whatsoever to do with the eternal justification of our salvation.
- Our true power system is the Holy Spirit, as believers walk by faith, working through love (Gal. 5:5,13-15).
- The Christian Way of Life has enemies.
- The external enemies of those who would impose legalism over grace (Gal. 5:6-12).
- The internal enemy of the flesh, with its natural desire hostile to the Holy Spirit (Gal. 5:16-18).
- The deeds of the flesh (Gal. 5:19-21) and the fruit of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22-23) are laid out in sharp contrast (Gal. 5:24-26).
- Our life by the Spirit is a product of our salvation in Christ (Gal. 5:25a).
- Our walk by the Spirit is a volitional matter for each believer to pursue or to reject (Gal. 5:25b).
- Our walk by the Spirit is not a matter for pride or competition (Gal. 5:26).
Galatians Chapter Six
- Each believer fights the battle between the Spirit and the flesh on the battleground of their own soul.
- Often times we lose that battle when we give in to temptation (Gal. 5:17b).
- Sometimes we lose that battle when others give in to temptation, and we grow prideful (Gal. 5:26).
- As a fellow soldier, each believer needs to come alongside their comrade in arms and lift them up when they do fall short (Gal. 6:1-5).
- Paul closes the letter with a number of admonitions for practical application (Gal. 6:6-18).
- Be financially grace oriented towards others, especially the Bible teachers (v.6).
- Be eternally oriented with respect to sowing and reaping (vv.7-8).
- Be aware of the real motivation behind the legalists (vv.12-13).
- Be in prayer for Paul’s continued ministry despite many health issues & persecution episodes (vv.14-18).