Set Free: An Exposition of Galatians

Set Free: An Exposition of Galatians

The gospel frees us by grace. This simple yet powerful message is unpacked in the book of Galatians. During this series, we go verse by verse through the whole book of Galatians.

Set Free by the Cross

November 19, 2017

In Paul’s last chapter to the Galatians, he summarized his letter by reminding them that the only way to be set free is by believing and boasting in the cross of Christ. It is believing and boasting in the cross of Christ that sets us free.

Set Free to Do Good

November 12, 2017

Being set free from the law and the flesh changes our motivation for doing good. Formerly, we thought we could earn salvation by doing good, but we ended up either judging others from a mindset of superiority or feeling like a failure from a low self-esteem. Trying to be good in our flesh actually revealed our own selfishness, and a tendency to take credit for the good others have done for us. So, how can we be set free to do good?

The apostle Paul told the believers in Galatia that they had been set free in Christ to do good. We can be set free in Christ to do good.

Set Free in the Spirit

November 5, 2017

Don’t you wish you could do what you really want to do? What if you could start your life all over again. Would you do anything differently? I’m not sure that people really set out to do something bad or stupid. They just kind of slide into certain habits and behaviors that get them into more and more trouble. Then, they feel stuck by their mistakes, enslaved by their bad habits. They want to change, but they have no power to change. Some try to make new rules for themselves to change, but they end up breaking their own regimen. Others just give into their habits and desires, deciding to just go with the downward flow. But Paul knew a better way…

In Paul’s letter to the Galatians, he warned that the only way to continue to live in freedom was by the power of the Holy Spirit. We can live in the freedom of the Holy Spirit.

Set Free to Live Free

October 29, 2017

What is the value of freedom? Someone has rightly said, “Freedom isn’t free.” It costs something. Whether it’s political freedom, physical freedom, financial freedom, freedom of speech or thought… There’s a price to be paid to get free. And there’s a continual responsibility to watch out for threats that would steal our freedom.

The same is true for our spiritual freedom, the kind of freedom that can only be found in Christ Jesus. Do you know this freedom? The freedom from guilt and shame? The freedom from earning and effort? The freedom to rest in the grace and acceptance of God through faith in Christ? If you don’t, I want to tell you how you can have this freedom. And if you do, I want to help you keep it!

In Paul’s letter to the Galatians, he urged them to continue to live in the freedom Christ had given them by recognizing and avoiding the threats to their freedom. We can recognize and avoid the threats to our freedom in Christ.

Set Free from Religion

October 22, 2017

Of all of God’s creatures, only humanity seeks answers to questions like: “Who am I? What is my purpose? Where do I fit in? Where do I belong?” We have a deep-seated need for identity and relationship. We want to know and be known. And we ask questions about our future, like: “What is my destiny? What happens when I die? Is there life after death?” Some have said that religion is our attempt to answer these kinds of questions.

In the apostle Paul’s letter to the churches of Galatia, he reminded them that they had been set free from man-made religion through faith in Christ. We can be set free from man-made religion by living according to faith in Christ.

Set Free by Adoption

October 15, 2017

The apostle Paul wanted to teach the Galatians how to be set free from that same bondage. He wanted them to know how to be set free by adoption. In his letter to the Galatians, Paul told believers that they were set free by spiritual adoption through faith in Christ Jesus. It is through faith in Christ Jesus that we are set free by spiritual adoption.

Set Free by Promise

October 8, 2017

That our freedom and salvation depend on God’s promise, not our performance is good news to those who know they are enslaved by sin and want to be set free, but it is challenging news to those who either feel they are already good enough or don’t agree with the Bible’s morality. Since they don’t recognize themselves as a sinner, they don’t feel any need for a Savior.

It is this tension between grace and law, promise and performance, that Paul addresses most clearly today. In chapter 3 of Galatians, Paul taught the Galatian churches that while God’s law had its purpose and place, salvation had always depended on God’s promise, not human performance. It is only by believing God’s promise that we are saved and set free.

Set Free by Faith

October 1, 2017

Freedom is connected to our faith. The word “faith” appears 12 times in today’s reading. Paul emphasized that it is faith in Christ that truly sets us free, not our own works of the law. In the apostle Paul’s letter to the Galatian churches, he told them that true freedom came not by works of the law, but by faith in Christ Jesus alone. Faith in Christ alone is the only way to experience true freedom.

Set Free by the Gospel

September 24, 2017

The reason many people are not receiving the good news that sets us free today, is because they really haven’t heard the true gospel, or they heard it and received it, but then fell back into living by self-effort. This is what was happening to the Galatians. They had heard the true gospel from Paul, but they were in danger of losing their freedom in Christ by coming back under a slavery to self-effort. In the second chapter of Paul’s epistle to the Galatians, he explained why their freedom depended on the true gospel that he had preached to them. The true gospel is the only gospel that can set us free.

Set Free by Grace

September 17, 2017

Are you free from slavery to sin? Have you received the grace of Christ which sets you free from sin and sin’s result, which is death? Some have never received this grace and that’s the good news for today. You can be set free because of God’s grace, His free gift of salvation. Many others have received this grace, but aren’t living as one who has been set free. Perhaps you have fallen into the trap of legalism. Having received the mercy of God for salvation, you are now trying to live according to your own merit. Having received God’s favor as a gift, you are now trying to earn God’s favor as a goal — as if God’s love is conditional based on your ongoing effort.

In the apostle Paul’s letter to the Galatian believers, he challenged them to return to Christ’s grace alone that was able to set them free. The only way to experience true freedom is to cling to Christ’s grace alone.