Grace that is Pure
In the book of Galatians, Paul shares his heart and his concern for the believers in the churches of Galatia. Paul had poured out his heart to all every where he went expressing the freedom and liberty in the grace of Jesus Christ.
He fully understood the bondage of the law. The Mosaic law was given as a standard, as a benchmark to demonstrate what sin is. To be ‘under the law’ one would have to obey every one of God’s laws. Which basically come down to two things – relationship with God and relationship with others. There are certain ‘do’s and don’ts’. There is a certain bondage in trying to justify yourself by trusting in yourself to obey all the law. No one can do that.
That’s Why We Needed Grace
That’s why through their amazing love for us – God sent His Son to be the Savior of the world. Jesus paid the penalty and the price for everyone’s sin. Jesus gave us the opportunity to be ‘adopted’ into God’s family. And it’s a simple gift. There are no strings attached. All we have to do is acknowledge our need; acknowledge Jesus for what He’s done and accept the Gift of Salvation through Grace.
“But if, while we seek to be justified by Christ, we ourselves also are found sinners, is therefore Christ the minister of sin? God forbid. For if I build again the things which I destroyed, I make myself a transgressor. For I through the law am dead to the law, that I might live unto God. I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God who loved me and gave himself for me. I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain”. Galatians 2:17-21
Made Perfect by Grace
There’s nothing we can do to be made perfect in God’s eyes. We are made ‘perfect‘ through Christ. That is through accepting the free gift of Salvation through Jesus Christ, we are made right with God. There’s nothing we can ‘do’ to improve that standing.
“Even as Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness. Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham. And the scripture foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith preached before the gospel unto Abraham saying, in the shall all nations be blessed. So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham. For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them”. Galatians 3:6-10
Under the law, we just cannot of ourselves earn a right position with God. The law is not faith – it is attempting to ‘do’ right things to earn grace. Faith and Grace come in believing in the finished work of Christ. God promised Abraham that all would be blessed through Him. That was a promise that Christ would come. And Abraham believed God.
“And this I say, that the covenant that was confirmed before of God in Christ, the law, which was four hundred and thirty years after, cannot disannul, that it should make the promise of none effect. For if the inheritance be of the law, it is no more of promise: but God gave it to Abraham by promise. Wherefore then serveth the law? It was added because of transgressions till the seed should come to whom the promise was made; and it was ordained by angels in the hand of a mediator. Now a mediator is not a mediator of one, but God is one. Is the law then against the promises of God? God forbid: fir if there had been a law given which could have given life, verily righteousness should have been by the law. But scripture hat concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith in Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe.” Galatians 3:17-22
Heirs through Christ
If you believed in Christ you are now adopted heirs of God – according to the promise. Our position with God is completely through Christ.
“But when the fullness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, To redeem them that were under the law that we might receive the adoption of sons. And because ye are sons, God hat sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying Abba Father. Wherefore thou art no more a servant, but a son; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ”. Galatians 4:4-6
How then Shall We Now Live?
If we are now adopted into the family of God through faith in Christ, how then shall we now live? Can we do any thing we want and it doesn’t matter? Absolutely not! We are not justified by the law, but we do act right accordingly – not for our sakes – but for God’s and for others. This is why we live right with God. Because of love for Him and gratitude for what Jesus did for us. We live to love others – who may even despise us.
“Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.” Galatians 5:1
“Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; yea are fallen from grace. For we through the Spirit wait for the hope of righteousness by faith.” Galatians 5:4-5
Walking in the Spirit
Being saved through faith in Christ doesn’t free us from the burden of our flesh. There will always be a constant battle. This was well known to Paul. But, he understood that we are to learn of God through His word to walk in the Spirit – to ‘crucify’ our flesh – daily. If we walked in the ‘flesh’ we would be no different than an unbeliever (Galatians 5:19 – 21) To walk in the Spirit is to walk right with God and with man. We don’t do those things that are wrong – we live out of love. Through the Spirit demonstrating God’s love through us we can:
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance, against such there is no law. And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another.” Galatians 5:22-26
Bear One Another’s Burdens
If someone, another believer, is found to be ‘overtaken in a fault’ that is deliberately sinning despite having received the Grace of God. We are to ‘restore‘ that person in ‘love’ not in condemnation. Because we all who have accepted the free gift of Salvation could fall under the same situation. We don’t live right to glory in ourselves. We live right because of a relationship – one with God and one with others.
“But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world. For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision, but the new creature. And as many as walk according to this rule, peace be on them, and mercy, and upon the Israel of God.” Galatians 6:14-16
This is what living for Christ is all about. Its all about Grace. It’s all about love. It’s all about faith in Jesus Christ knowing what He’s done for us and the promises God made and kept. I can live today peaceably with all praying they’ll see Christ in me. I can live today peaceably with God – because of Christ. It is a joy each day, no matter what, to live for Christ. It is a joy each day to demonstrate His love to others. Some day we will all stand before God…- so for now I understand fully what it means, ‘for me to live is Christ and to die is gain’ Philippians 1:21. Life as a believer is grace – grace through Christ that is pure. Life is not about living for ourselves – it’s about living for God and it’s about living for others.