A Compelling Truth: A 30 Day Journey through Galatians with Rob Stanmore

DAY 9

“We who are Jews by birth and not sinful Gentiles know that a person is not justified by the works of the law, but by faith in Jesus Christ. So we, too, have put our faith in Christ Jesus that we may be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the law, because by the works of the law no one will be justified.
“But if, in seeking to be justified in Christ, we Jews find ourselves also among the sinners, doesn’t that mean that Christ promotes sin? Absolutely not! If I rebuild what I destroyed, then I really would be a lawbreaker.

Galatians 2:15-18 NIV

This passage of scripture shows us the great collision of the Jewish way of thinking before Jesus death and resurrection colliding with the Gospel way of thinking.

Paul presents the case to them, and to us, that we are not saved (or as Paul would say “justified”) by our good works, but simply by faith in Jesus.

This is a powerful moment within the book of Galatians as Paul is providing the core of the confrontation he had with Peter.

Peter had been persuaded by the Jewish way of thinking that he had to be circumcised, act like a Jew and behave like a Jew, in order to be accepted by God, as this is what the law taught, pre-Jesus. For us, it could be feeling like we need to be a ‘good person’ for God to love us. Or you might feel you need to do ‘good things’ to be accepted by God.

Paul is inviting us to a completely new way of seeing the world. 

The law is now only there to be a mirror. It is only to reveal our need of Jesus. 

We now know clearly what sin is, how easily it is to sin, how unable we are to keep from sinning, and our need of a saviour—Jesus.

The powerful truth Paul uncovers in this passage is that it isn’t by doing ‘good things’ we are saved, but by faith in Jesus.

Question

How does this change your view of the law through understanding grace?

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