This is part 1 of a 4 part series. Click these links for the rest: part 2, part 3, part 4
This past Sunday we began our journey through the book of Galatians. Jason shared about the simplicity that can be found in following Jesus. The question of how we can be justified before God is a question that every religion tries to answer, but the gospel of grace proclaimed in the Bible is the only true gospel. We need the book of Galatians to help us live in the simplicity of the gospel, and thereby experience its power. Jason brought up four reasons that we (as a church and individuals) need this study through the book of Galatians. I’ll be blogging the rest of this week to expand on some of the ideas he shared.
The Galatian church was wrestling through the theological misconception that there were some works necessary to secure salvation. Some of the Galatians were holding to the notion that the laws and customs of the Old Covenant needed to be kept to be justified. Paul argues that these Judaizers are not only distorting the gospel, but that what they’re proclaiming is not the gospel at all. One reason we need the book of Galatians is to fight the draw to performance-driven Christianity.
Following Jesus isn’t about abiding by a set of rules or completing some tasks to please God. Following Jesus is an act of faith; continually trusting in the grace provided by God through the cross of Christ. We easily believe that we are initially justified by the grace of God as a gift, but we can be so quick to try to secure and assure our own salvation by our works. This is exactly one of the issues that Paul was trying to help the Galatians think rightly about, and it’s no less relevant to us today. It’s not as though God justifies us by grace, then expects us to maintain that justification through our works. He justifies us by grace once and for all, and our acts of obedience and charity are an avenue of worship, gratitude, and faith in God’s future provision of grace. It is dangerous and draining to have to constantly perform to be accepted by God.
As you reflect on the simplicity of the gospel, remember that your relationship with God isn’t seen by Him through the lens of performance. It’s seen through the lens of the perfect life, death and resurrection of Jesus, the solid rock!
If you missed the message this week, listen here to get caught up: