Tuesday, May 17, 2011

What Are You Adding For Salvation?

For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery. Look: I, Paul, say to you that if you accept circumcision, Christ will be of no advantage to you. I testify again to every man who accepts circumcision that he is obligated to keep the whole law. You are severed from Christ, you who would be justified by the law; you have fallen away from grace. For through the Spirit, by faith, we ourselves eagerly wait for the hope of righteousness. For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for anything, but only faith working through love. 

Paul makes it clear to us in this passage that he is writing it to protect the church in Galatia from allowing false teachers to enter the church and remind them that the will of God in their lives is freedom through Christ. What has taken place here is that after Paul planted the church in Galatia and moved elsewhere to plant more churches, a group of false teachers, known as the Judaizers, have entered in and started teaching things contrary to what they had been taught by Paul.

In this case it is the rite of circumcision, but taken to the degree that it is necessary in order to obtain salvation. Instead of pointing to Jesus as the only way to salvation, they are pointing to something external, what we will call a “plus” as the means to salvation and following Christ. In verse one we see that God’s will for you is that you would enjoy the freedom that you have been given through Christ, but these false teachers are coming in and attempting to bring division within the church by the means of legalism and taking away the freedom that we have been given in Christ. My question to you in post one of three on this passage is to think about what might you be adding for your own means to Salvation? 

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