UNDERSTANDING GOD'S BLESSINGS
I have often acted foolishly because I failed to think things through.
I've spent money I didn't have to spend because I failed to think.
I once road in a helicopter next to an open door without wearing a seat belt.
That certainly wasn't thinking.
And when I was a layman I once sided with someone on a key issue, without talking to my pastor first. That wasn't thinking either.
In verses 1 and 3 of our text Paul calls the Galatians "foolish".
By foolish, he did not mean they were stupid, or dumb, or mentally deficient. He meant they weren't thinking. Because they weren't thinking they were being fooled by false teachers.
The false teachers were instructing these new believers that they had to keep Old Testament Law as well as believe on Christ in order to have eternal life. Specifically the Galatians were being wrongly taught that they had to practice the Jewish rite of circumcision in order to be saved.
Today we as Christians try often foolishly try to do the same thing. We believe on Christ, and God, through His Spirit, does a wonderful work in our lives. Then we try to live the Christian Life without God's power at work within us. We try to be holy, Godly, and a good witness in our own self-effort. This is foolish. We are not thinking.
We need to understand God's blessing. God has blessed us so we can live a Christian life that pleases Him after we are saved. The Galatians were foolish because they did not understand the blessing of God. We are equally foolish if we do not understand the blessing of God. In our text Paul shows us three things about God's blessing that we need to understand.
WE ARE BLESSED WITH THE SPIRIT
Vs. 2 - These Galatians were truly saved. They had received the Holy Spirit of God in their
Anyone who is saved is born of the spirit. (John 3:1-8)
Anyone who is truly saved has received the Holy Spirit of God. 1 Corinthians 6:19-20, , Romans 8:9, Ephesians 1:3.
Vs. 5 - The one who ministers or supplies the Spirit is God.
God supplies His spirit so that we might be filled with the Spirit and produce the fruit of the Spirit. Ephesians 5:18-21, Galatians 5:22-23
WE ARE BLESSED BY FAITH
Vs. 2 - Paul asks an important question.
He wants to know if the Galatians first received the Spirit by the works of the law or the hearing of faith? The obvious answer is that they were blessed by the hearing of faith.
Vs. 3 - Paul shows how illogical and foolish these Galatians were. They received the Spirit of God as a result of faith. They began their Christian walk with the Holy Spirit. Now, they were trying to perfect the Christian life by the keeping of the Old Testament Law. They should have been living the Christian Life by simple faith in the power of God's Spirit.
Vs. 5 - The great things accomplished by the Spirit of God are not by keeping Old Testament Law or any self-effort without the power of God. The great things of the Spirit of God accomplishes in our lives are a result of our faith or reliance, or trust in God.
We are not suggesting that we are to be lazy. We are suggesting that all that we do should be done by faith.
WE ARE BLESSED WITH ABRAHAM
Vs. 6 - Abraham was a great patriarch, a great hero in Jewish history. God made him a promise. He promised him a son. He promised him descendents as numerous as the stars. Abraham believed that promise. God declared him righteous.
Vs. 7 - Those in this age, which trust Christ as Savior are true children of Abraham. Those who live the Christian life by faith by faith after being saved are acting as true children of Abraham.
Vs. 8 - The Gentiles are justified through faith in Abraham's descendent, Christ. In Abraham all nations are blessed.
Vs. 9 - Those who are of faith are blessed with faithful, or believing Abraham. If you are saved you were blessed with Abraham at the point of salvation. And every time you trust God by faith as a Christian, you are again blessed with Abraham.
IT'S SO SIMPLE! DON'T MISS IT!
Introduce your message with an example of someone who took something simple and made it difficult. This might include giving travel instructions or working on some sort of project.
The Gospel itself is really very simple (1 Corinthians 15:3-4, Ephesians 2:8-9), but there are folks who try to add to the Gospel. This was the problem facing the Galatians. The Galatians were trying to live the Christian Life by keeping the Old Testament Law. They were taking something simple, and making it complicated.
THE CURSE Vs. 10
Trying to be righteous by law keeping (The Ten Commandments, or any other law.) just doesn't work. The curse is that a person would have to keep the law perfectly in order to get into Heaven.
Nobody but the Lord Jesus has ever done that. Romans 3:10, 23, James 2:10
THE CONFLICT Vss. 11-12
There are two principles that contradict each other mentioned here.
The law principle, says, "I will try to be declared righteous before God based on my ability to keep law, my own self-effort."
The grace principle says, "I will trust God to do for me and in me what I cannot do for myself."
THE CURE Vs. 13-14
The cure for those who have not lived righteous lives according to the law (That's all of us.) is the fact that Christ died for our sins, becoming a curse for us. When a person receives Christ as Savior, he or she receive the cure for their sins, and is blessed. They receive the "promise of the Spirit through faith", which enables them to live Godly lives.