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

DAY 13

Brothers and sisters, let me take an example from everyday life. Just as no one can set aside or add to a human covenant that has been duly established, so it is in this case. The promises were spoken to Abraham and to his seed. Scripture does not say “and to seeds,” meaning many people, but “and to your seed,” meaning one person, who is Christ. What I mean is this: The law, introduced 430 years later, does not set aside the covenant previously established by God and thus do away with the promise. For if the inheritance depends on the law, then it no longer depends on the promise; but God in his grace gave it to Abraham through a promise.
Why, then, was the law given at all? It was added because of transgressions until the Seed to whom the promise referred had come. The law was given through angels and entrusted to a mediator. A mediator, however, implies more than one party; but God is one.
Is the law, therefore, opposed to the promises of God? Absolutely not! For if a law had been given that could impart life, then righteousness would certainly have come by the law.

Galatians 3:15-21 NIV

Have you ever promised someone something?

If my wife, Amanda, promised me that she’d buy me some new shoes I wanted for my birthday, I have faith in her as the promise-giver.

This is a promise not based on my performance, but from grace.

However, this would change if Amanda was to say, “If you clean my car every day, write me a love letter every day and vacuum the house every day then I will buy you some new shoes”.

Now, this is a promise based on my performance.

This is where Paul is trying to bring a distinction to a promise.

Either a promise is based on the promise keeper by grace, or a promise is based on the receiver’s performance by works.

Paul is using Abraham as an illustration to show us the promise God gave to Abraham wasn’t actually based on his performance, but by God’s grace.

We aren’t saved because of what we did to earn God’s love, but we are saved because of grace. There is nothing we could have ever done to earn God’s love or to be chosen by God, like Abraham.

Question

How does this impact the way you can trust God? 

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