Posts Tagged ‘Works v Faith’

Galatians 6:11-18 Boast In The Cross

I will boast; not because of who I am but because of what HE did.

Paul concludes his letter to the Galatian believers by summing up his point. Circumcision is NOT the way to Jesus! He puts that in capital letters so they don’t miss it.

This whole letter has been explaining to the Gentile believers in Galatia why they do not need circumcision. In fact, if they accept circumcision they will be required to follow the whole law. Paul now points to why the false teachers were trying to get the believers to adopt the practice in the first place.

We already discovered it was out of jealousy. Paul tells us that it was so “that they may boast in your flesh” (verse 13b). If the Gentile believers bought into this doctrine the false teachers could claim they brought the gospel to them. They wanted to “pad their numbers.” To make themselves look good to the other groups. Read more »

Galatians 5:1-15 The Offense of the Cross

His works make me righteous, not mine

Paul continues to contend for the work of faith. Works CANNOT save us! Those who teach this are number one on Paul’s damnation list.

During our last reading I pointed out the jealousy that lay beneath this struggle between the Children of the Promise and the Children of the Law. The second was never able to have what the first was freely given. But there is another insidious attitude lurking beneath the surface. That monster is pride. Read more »

Galatians 4:21-31 Children of Promise

God created a separation for a reason.

Paul continues to draw a distinct line between those who would seek God through the law and those who approach Him through the promise. The law leads to slavery not salvation. The promise leads to freedom through salvation.

Just as Ishmael was jealous of Isaac, the false teachers were jealous of those living in the freedom Jesus provided. The one saw that they couldn’t have what the other was given freely. And this created conflict. Read more »

Galatians 2:15-21 Crucified With Christ

Because He lives in me I try to please Him.

Paul continues to contend for justification by faith instead of works. Not only were the Gentiles sinners but the Jews too! And just as in need of God’s grace.

The whole argument in a nutshell; “If righteousness were through the law, then Christ died for no purpose” (verse 21). The law could not do what needed done so adherence to it still would NOT save anyone.

But the concepts of serving God with your whole heart and behaving rightly towards your fellow man were not thrown out. The law gave specific directions for the Jews daily lives. It spelled out blessings and cursings for adherence to it. Everything was based on a quid pro quo system. If you do ___ then God will do ___. Read more »

Romans 10:5-21 Everyone Who Believes

What I am called to do

Paul brings us to the most important part of this whole book. The “must have” pieces for salvation, and who can have these pieces.

The bottom line in Paul’s letter is this: “If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. For the Scripture says, ‘Everyone who believes in Him will not be put to shame’” (verses 9-11).

Not because of our works. Not because we say the right words. Not because we belong to the right group. But because of the work Jesus did on our behalf. Read more »