Monday, August 20, 2012

260 in 2012 DEVOS - Day 166 - Galatians 4: Contrasting of Grace & Law, Faith & Works

I believe today’s reading can be summed up by verse 9 which reads, “But now that you know God—or rather are known by God—how is it that you are turning back to those weak and miserable principles?” Paul again addresses the believers in Galatia because they were mixing the gospel with works of the law. He begins by using the illustration of a child coming of age. He contrasts a believer’s life before knowing Jesus (children & servants), with their life after knowing Jesus (adults & sons). When we didn’t know Jesus, we were slaves to the “basic principles of this world” = rules of men! BUT, “when the time had fully come” – in God’s perfect timing He sent JESUS to pay for our sins – so we are no longer slaves but sons & heirs! Because of this, Paul is like, “hello – why are you going back to man’s rules instead of God’s grace?” – vs. 9. He was afraid he was wasting his time on them – and he had poured a lot of time into them! They knew it, and though they had lost their joy, at one time they would have given Paul one of their eyes had he needed it! Because of this deep relationship, Paul shot straight with them and risked becoming their enemy. He was adamant that the Jewish believers never really wanted Gentiles to be able to have Jesus and Paul was perplexed that the Galatians couldn’t see through this. He concludes his argument with an allegory of the two sons – Ishmael & Isaac. Isaac being the son of promise, and Ishmael not. Just like Isaac inherited the promised given to his father, believers receive God’s redemptive promises because we are spiritual heirs. SO WHAT?! *What are you doing today to “get in” better with God? There is NOTHING we could ever do to “get in” better since God has already by grace thru faith given us everything as heirs! What a relief! *Some day the “time will fully come” when Jesus returns. None of us know when that day will be but we do know it’s coming. Let’s be prepared by living our lives as thank you letters back to Jesus each day!

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