August 18/Galatians 2

“When your salvation depends on your faith; what you believe matters”

Paul said that the Judaizers wanted to take away their freedoms in Christ. Here are the freedoms he was talking about. This is an excerpt from the sermon I preached on this chapter.

The gospel gives us cultural freedom: Galatians 2:4 …and take away the freedom we have in Christ Jesus.They wanted to enslave us and force us to follow their Jewish regulations.

I grew up with don’t go to movies, don’t play cards, don’t go to school dances, don’t drink beer, don’t smoke or chew, and bowling was suspect. It was implied that my salvation hinged on not doing these things.

The gospel gives us emotional freedom: 1 John 4:18 (NLT) — 18 Such love has no fear, because perfect love expels all fear. If we are afraid, it is for fear of punishment, and this shows that we have not fully experienced his perfect love.

If I went to a movie or played cards at a friend’s house I would feel guilty and insecure. I remember talking to my Christian friends and one of them said, “We’ve been Christians all our lives but what if we got drunk one day and that night we all died would we go to heaven?” Some thought we would some weren’t sure. When you base your salvation on good moral behavior you ride the roller coaster of guilt and insecurity.

We are not free from obeying the moral law like the Ten Commandments but we are free from obeying them to earn our salvation. God has accepted us because of what Jesus did and we obey out of grateful hearts not out of fear and insecurity of wondering if we are going to lose our salvation.

The gospel gives us ministry freedom: Galatians 2:7–9 (NLT) — 7 Instead, they saw that God had given me the responsibility of preaching the gospel to the Gentiles, just as he had given Peter the responsibility of preaching to the Jews. 8 For the same God who worked through Peter as the apostle to the Jews also worked through me as the apostle to the Gentiles. 9 In fact, James, Peter, and John, who were known as pillars of the church, recognized the gift God had given me, and they accepted Barnabas and me as their co-workers. They encouraged us to keep preaching to the Gentiles, while they continued their work with the Jews.

We can work with any ministry outside of our church to bring all people of all cultures the gospel! There are no unclean people that we can’t go to and there are more than 144,000 that are going to be saved. We are free to go to all genders, even mixed genders and people who are confused about their gender!

The gospel gives us outlook freedom: Galatians 2:10 (NLT) — 10 Their only suggestion was that we keep on helping the poor, which I have always been eager to do.

I am accepted by and secure in Jesus so I can look out for the poor. I have been blessed and I want to bless others. I know that Jesus will take care of me and that releases me to help take care of others. I don’t do it to earn my salvation or get more favor with God. I do it because I am saved and am already favored!

Jeremiah 22:16 (NLT) — 16 He(King Josiah) gave justice and help to the poor and needy, and everything went well for him. Isn’t that what it means to know me?” says the Lord.

We must be careful to preach the gospel to ourselves daily or like Peter we can drift back into earning our salvation and be inner focused.

Timothy Keller, “If we could save ourselves, Christ’s death is pointless, and means nothing. If we realize we cannot save ourselves, Christ’s death will mean everything to us. And we will spend the life that He has given us in joyful service of Him, bringing our whole lives into line with the gospel.”

Be Inspired Hilltop!

Comments

  1. Mark Gundersen says:

    Paul continues to stress that salvation comes from faith not works. He had to confront Peter when fear of man outweighed fear of God. Legalism is a cancer in the church that divides it and prevents some from coming to know the real Jesus.