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Sometimes the Word of God packs a whole lot of theology into a very few words. That is certainly the case in Galatians 3:10-14. We can only scratch the surface here – but these 5 verses deserve a lot of our attention. As do 1 Kings 17:8-18:46; Mark 14:22-25 and Psalm 97.
I’m Reid Ferguson – and you’re listening to Through the Word in 2020.
A perennial problem for Believers today, is the failure to really grasp how different our situation is this side of the Cross, from those who lived before Christ’s incarnation and the inauguration of the New Covenant.
The Christian MUST see themselves as under an entirely New Covenant or agreement with God, other than that of the OT Jewish believer. And while these covenants share certain common features, they are truly different from one another. The key change is a shift from an external code to govern life, to the restoration of life itself. A new birth to bring us to love righteousness and hate sin the way God does – naturally (i.e. according to His nature). The creation in us of a new man – empowered by the Holy Spirit. This is something the Law cannot, could not, ever do.
So it is, in vs. 12, we are reminded that the Law is a simple statement of fact. Faith however, believes the promise of Christ in the Gospel. The Law says “do this and you will die” – and it is effective whether one believes the law or not. The wages of sin IS death – to all. But the Gospel is NOT merely a simple statement of fact in the same way. One must believe the Gospel, must embrace it by faith in order for its power to be theirs in salvation. We can’t explore here how faith is wrought in the heart, that’s revealed in Romans 10:17 – but this consideration is simply that living by faith (or under grace) is contrasted to living under the Law. The law also said “do this and you will live” – which the physical life and material prosperity obedience to the Low promised were but shadows of the spiritual life and prosperity that belongs to those who come into the “obedience of faith” as it is called in Romans 1:5 & 16:26.
Vs. 13 says that Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the Law. Not that the Law itself was a curse – but that Jesus has delivered us from the penalty or the curse violating the Law brings upon us. He has delivered us from certain and eternal death – to be reconciled to the Father through faith.
Then lastly, in vs. 14, he brings us back to our first observation: The very purpose of our being grafted into the blessings of Abraham, is so that we can receive the promise of the indwelling Spirit of Christ Jesus.
The presence, the power, the influence and the privilege of the fullness of the indwelling Spirit of Christ – THIS, is what He has saved us for. This is the promise of the New Covenant which was only hinted at in the Old. The Spirit was there in those days, but not in His fullness as He has been since Pentecost. Just as Christ made appearances in Old Testament times, but was not here in fullness until the incarnation.
God has given us His Spirit that we might walk with Him, know Him, enjoy and experience Him far beyond what we might have imagined. This is the glory and the wonder of what belongs to us under this New Covenant. And how we need to walk in the reality of it more and more until Christ comes. He, the Spirit, is our foretaste of Heaven, if we will look to Him as such.
Think on that today Christian.
God bless. And God willing, we’ll be back tomorrow.