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Keys to Living Out the Christian Life! (A Study of Galatians 2:19-21) Part 4

Here in Galatians 2:19-21 we learn a number of truths that will help us navigate this thing called the Christian life.  These “keys” are not automatic or easy.  But they are essential IF I am to live out my new life in Jesus.  Let’s look at our text once more:

What have we seen so far?  We’ve seen that the first key in verse 19 is that I must have a proper relationship to the law. The law brings death and I have died to it. The second key is that the old me is dead! We read in verse 20- “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live.”  The third key that impacts me here is this: There is a NEW ME who is to live by faith! (v. 20). I have not ceased to exist.  But now I can live a new life by faith in the Son of God.

There is a fourth key that I see in this passage and it is this:  I have been paid for!  Please notice the expression in verse 20- “the Son of God . . . who loved me and gave himself for me.”  Theologians refer to this as the doctrine of substitutionary atonement!  [We get paid by the big words].

Notice two truths in this expression “He gave Himself for me”:  First, He gave Himself.  Jesus said, “No one takes [my life] from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again.” (Jn. 10:18).  Jesus voluntarily sacrificed Himself for me.  Notice also that the verse says “He gave Himself for me.”  Jesus’ death on the cross was intensely personal and specific.  It is hard to believe — but we must — that the Second Person of the Trinity had me in mind when He went to Calvary!

If this is indeed true — His death was voluntary and it was for me — how could I ever doubt His love for me?  How could I ever look at my life as insignificant?  How is it that I can choose at any one moment to live for myself, instead of for Him?

But we do, don’t we?  Today’s challenge: Focus today on Jesus’ giving of Himself for you.  Thank Him for His sacrifice.  And ask Him not how you can repay Him (an impossibility), but how you can moment by moment live for His glory.  Today. (to be continued)

 
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Posted by on July 14, 2018 in CHRISTIAN LIVING

 

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Major Themes in the Book of Galatians (Ch. 3 Part 3)

As we continue our study of this great epistle of Galatians (in preparation for my teaching this book to the students at the Word of Life Bible Institute in Korea), we are thinking about chapter three.  Paul deals with the theme of justification by faith (vv. 6-9).  But how is justification accomplished by the Lord Jesus?

The next theme in chapter three is indeed the atoning work of the Lord Jesus (vv. 10-14).

Those who rely on the works of the law are under a curse (v. 10).  Why?  Because that kind of justification requires perfect obedience to the law (an obedience impossible for us to attain).

We are told that “the righteous will live by faith” (v. 11).  However, it is a faith in GOD, not in oneself!  The expression “the righteous shall live by faith” is used in Habakkuk 2:4, Romans 1:16-17, Galatians 3:11, and Hebrews 10:38.

Our inability to keep the law perfectly puts us under the “curse” of the law (v. 12).  But Christ redeems us from that curse by becoming a curse for us (v. 13).  His substitutionary death on the cross brings the Abrahamic blessing and the reception of the Spirit to all who believe (v. 14).

If you’re right now not shouting “Hallelujah!” (at least inwardly), check your pulse.  You might be dead!

 

 
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Posted by on May 29, 2018 in Galatians

 

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Major Themes in the Book of Galatians (Ch. 1 Part 2)

I am looking forward to teaching the book of Galatians at the Word of Life Korea June 7-16. Please pray for me as I prepare my notes.

What are the major themes of this outstanding epistle? There is no substitute for reading and re-reading a book of the Bible to understand its primary emphases. Let’s continue to think about chapter one.

We’ve thought about this first theme of one’s calling (v. 1).

A second theme that jumps out in chapter one is the atoning work of the Lord Jesus.  Notice in verse 4- “. . . who gave himself for our sins to rescue us from the present evil age.”

Do you feel rescued?  The substitutionary salvation work of the Lord Jesus is a primary theme in this epistle (as we will see).  This is the gospel — and it’s worth fighting for!
Rescued people are grateful people.  How might you and I express our gratitude to the Lord, our Great Rescuer, today?

 

 
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Posted by on May 6, 2018 in Galatians

 

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