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Welcome to the Westside church’s special Monday Morning Coffee podcast with Mark Roberts. Mark is a disciple, a husband, father and grand dad, as well as a certified coffee geek, fan of CS Lewis’ writings and he loves his big red Jeep. He’s also the preacher for Westside church.
Hello, and welcome to the Westside churches special Monday Morning Coffee podcast on this podcast, our preacher Mark Roberts will help you get your week started right. With look back at yesterday's sermon so that we can think through it further and better work the applications into our daily lives . Mark will then look forward into this week's Bible reading so that we can know what to expect and watch for. And, he may have some extra bonus thoughts from time to time. So grab a cup of coffee as we start the week together on Monday Morning Coffee with Mark.Speaker 2:
Good morning. Good morning. Welcome to the Monday morning coffee podcast for Monday, June the 13th. And it is vacation Bible school week at west side . That's what this is about. It's what I preached about yesterday. It's what I'm gonna talk about right now, depending on when you're listening to this podcast, it's probably happening right now. Grab that cup of coffee. Grab your Bible. We're gonna talk Galatians. We're gonna talk VBS. Let's get started. So it is vacation Bible school week at west side , one of the greatest weeks of our entire year. So much time, energy effort thought planning have gone into our VBS this year. The theme is the great escape and I preached about that theme yesterday. I love VBS Sunday. Just love it, love it, love it. It's a great chance for the whole church to come together and to get on board with what we're doing for kids. And I do want our adults to know about the VBS theme and what we're teaching and what's going on. It's important that everybody see and understand the emphasis that's being placed. That helps grandparents, aunts, uncles, friends, parents know what to talk about during the week. The big idea in our VBS this year is the great escape. And so we're gonna work through five escape stories. Noah escapes, the flood, the Israelites escape from slavery in Egypt. That's today's lesson Monday, Daniel escapes from the den of lions on Tuesday, Wednesday, Paul and Silas escaped from prison and Thursday, Jesus escapes from the tomb. And I use those lessons and those ideas to put together the sermon yesterday morning, the big ideas I had, God wants to save us. That doesn't mean however that we are never hurt or harmed. I think that's important for kids to understand. We don't want to oversell what God does in our lives, because thirdly, what God is really aiming for is our deliverance from sin. And sometimes adversity is precisely what we need to help us draw closer to God or to whittle on our character a little bit so that we can receive God's grace and mercy and understand the need for salvation. So sometimes there is adversity in our lives. I'm thinking about that. Wednesday, Paul and Silas escaped from prison. That's the day that I get to teach and I am working through that material and it must have been, yeah, it must have been pretty hard being that inner dungeon there in Philippine acts chapter 16 probably did not get a very good cup of coffee down there. I'm I'm actually holding a really good, this is an Americano that I made and it's just marvelous, but I'm guessing Paul and Silas weren't, weren't experiencing a lot of nice luxuries and amenities. Were they ? So let me share with you just a couple of more thoughts as VBS week is getting underway here. First and foremost, I love vacation Bible school because it says kids matter. It says kids matter. It is a monster effort. So many people participate. So many people work on this. We do some crazy stuff this year. Some guys put , uh , worked and put together. Noah's arc. Not even kidding. It's not a full size replica, but it's just huge. And then there's a prison that's been built so much goes into this. All of which says we wanna teach the word of God to little hearts that matters. It has to matter if the church is gonna have a future that pleases the Lord. I think about Jesus saying, let the children come unto me. Vacation Bible school is awesome. And that does mean that the vacation Bible school effort for 2022, it is already a success. Yes, we're gonna count noses this morning and see how many little ones are there. And we always want to have as many students as we can get in there and all of those kind of things matter. I get it. I get it. And you do too, but it's already a success because so many people have involved themselves in the work of the Lord. That's a huge part of what we wanna do and must do at west side , get off the bench, get in the game. And there may not be any effort all year long that gets as many people on the field and off the bench like vacation Bible school. It is tremendous. And that means it is a success because so many people have been working and praying and doing particularly thankful to Kelly and James for all of their efforts organizing this big deal. It's just something special. Maybe though the thing that I really wanna say this morning is vacation. Bible school gives us a wonderful opportunity to emphasize the goodness of God. God wants us to escape. God wants to deliver. God wants to save. And what we'll see all week in vacation Bible school is how often God has done precisely that because God is good. It's easy when we're parents and things, aren't going well to look at our kids and say, if you don't stop that, God's gonna get you . And I've probably said that to my kids. And you may have said that to your kids. And that's just probably, yeah, that's probably not what we wanna say about the Lord. That doesn't mean God, isn't just, and that doesn't mean that evil doers won't be punished, but it's important that we build into our children's lives and understanding of the goodness of God that he's not there to get you. He's there to save you. And we want to take advantage of the goodness of God, which means that we won't experience the judgment of God. But when we think about God, we don't want our kids to imagine him as the cosmic boogeyman, he's hiding in the closet and just waiting to get you. Or maybe if he sees you doing something fun, he's gonna come down there and say, stop that right now. We can't be having fun. Those images of God do so much destruction to a right relationship with God and the desire to worship God, don't get that started in your kids' lives. Instead, help them see that God wants you to escape the great escape it's happening this week at vacation Bible school at the west side of church. By the way, if you have not signed your kids up yet, don't worry about it. Get your kiddos down there. Let's get underway. Let's teach kids about the goodness of God and how he wants to save and deliver. That's the sermon notes from yesterday. Now we need to think about how Paul was trying to help the Galatians escape, the juing teachers and their false gospel. Let's get our Bibles open to the book of Galatians. Let's talk about daily Bible reading for this week. This week in our daily arrival , reading we're in the book of Galatians world regulations , two and three, the two chapters that just really stand at the heart of this important and significant epistle. It is short, but it is pointed and it is powerful. And while as we read along about these juing teachers and all that, they're trying to do what they're trying to add to the gospel. It may seem at first that this does not have application to you and me, but I assure you as we journey along this week, there will be some challenging applications. As we think about what it is to be saved by faith in Jesus Christ and not by works. That's a huge emphasis. That is the emphasis. I think that Paul is making in this epistle. We wanna make sure that we grab that. So today, Monday we read Galatians chapter two versus one to 10 verse one. After 14 years, I went again to Jerusalem with Barnabas taking Titus, along with me, I said some things last week about the timing of this. And I still think Galatians two , one is talking about the visit that Paul made in acts chapter 11, when he and Barnabas brought famine relief funds to Jerusalem. This seems to be a private meeting and does not seem to be the acts 15 meeting, which is so public there's debate. And then a letter comes out of that. I think if Paul is writing post acts 15, he would just say you got a letter and we'd all just move on because the issue had been thoroughly settled. Maybe what we ought to grab onto here is that this issue was discussed in acts chapter 11, several years before the Jerusalem conference, but that it bubbled to the surface. Again, sometimes we think we've put something to rest and it just won't go away. And it was just very difficult for Jewish Christians to give up on the law of Moses and to fully accept Gentiles as being complete participants in the kingdom of God enough. So that in tomorrow's reading, we will see that Peter had some issues with that. And so did Barnabas , uh , maybe that as well, I'll borrow a little bit from tomorrow would say something about this is not chapter two. Verse one is not the acts 15 meeting because it's just hard to imagine. Peter getting caught up in the sin of hypocrisy after his very vocal defense and acts 15 of what the gospel constitutes or what constitutes the gospel and what it's all about . So I'm gonna put this down as acts chapter 11, or maybe, maybe it's a trip to Jerusalem that we don't know about. I've kind of kicked that around a little bit, but if this is one of the visits that Luke records, I think this is the acts 11 visit notice. Titus is not forced to be circumcised verse three. And notice here that they're James, this is verse nine, James SIFA and John who are pillars. They extend the right hand of fellowship to Barnabas. And Paul, Paul and Barnabas are teaching the truth. They are not in some ways cutting it short. They don't get a rebuke. They don't get some kind of admonition. They are not told, Hey, what are you doing? Telling Gentiles. They don't have to be circumcised. And all of this would say that there's going to be disputes and disagreements in the church and not all squabbles are equal. There are some things that are essential. And then there are some things that are not essential. And Paul is extremely flexible. We read in first Corinthians in ninth chapter. That's way back in March and April. When we were reading there about how Paul says, I become all things to all men and I can, I can become a Gentile when I'm with the Gentiles, I can act Jewish when I'm with the Jews, I do whatever it takes so that I can get the opportunity to teach somebody the gospel. And here there's none of that because this is being added as a salvation requirement that ought to help us in our thinking, Hey, see told you there's gonna be some applications here. I don't think PowerPoint is essential. I don't think blue carpet is essential, but if somebody shows up and says, I'll tell you what, if you wanna be a Christian, you need to hear repent, confess and be baptized. And then you know what? You need to run around the building seven times or you can't be saved. Ah , I'm not gonna be able to flex on that. There's not gonna be any room for adding to the gospel. That's where we're going in our reading tomorrow. I'll see you on Tuesday. We'll pick up the reading in Galatians chapter two and verse 11 . It is Tuesday. We're reading Galatians chapter two verses 11 to 21. We'll just read to the end of the chapter here. I'm still thinking about yesterday's episode and I'm concerned. I think I left faith out of the five steps of salvation, but faith is front and center in our reading today, as Paul makes two powerful points, he's showing his independence that his gospel does not come from men and that he is not somehow beholding to the authorities or the big dogs back in Jerusalem. And he shows that here by saying that he had to admonish Peter and Barnabas because they got carried away in hypocrisy. And here he's talking about eating. And once again, I need to give you that note about eating together meant so much to the Jews, eating kosher dietary restrictions. All of that is a big, big deal to Jews. And to these Jewish Christians, remember Daniel and Daniel won , Hey that guy's in captivity and he is not going to eat non kosher in second Maccabees . That's a book that's not inspired, not part of your Bible. Don't try to turn to second Maccabees, but second Maccabees takes into second Macabees . But second Macabees takes place between Malachi and Matthew between the testaments. And there's a story there of a mother and her seven sons. And they are martyred. They die because they will not eat pork in John chapter four, the Samaritan woman is shocked that Jesus would ask her for a drink of water. Jews don't eat and drink with Gentiles. And Paul says that troubles about that came all the way to Antioch and brethren showed up there, maybe false brethren and said, we can't be eating with these Gentiles. They're not circumcised. Circumcision is the mark of being in covenant relationship with God. It's the identifying mark of those who are serving God. They're not pure. We can't eat with them. And Peter and Barnabas, both man. I'm so disappointed in Barnabas. I love him so much. He's so positive. And he's such an encourager. This is the only download about him in all of scripture, but they get carried away with that. And so here, Paul has to say, this is wrong. It can't be right. You know, better than this. And maybe a lesson here is that Peter shows us that knowing what's right, knowing right doctrine, doesn't always mean we live what we know and that the power of peer pressure works even on adults. That's what's happened here. So this section then concludes by Paul recounting what he told Peter. There's a quote there in verse 14 and then verse 15 in most Bibles just starts a new paragraph, but this may very well be part of what Paul said to Peter. You look at that and see how you feel about that. But he says, we know a person verse 16, he is not justified by works of the law, but through faith in Jesus Christ, Paul denies here that we can be made right with God by the law. And this is the first time that he starts using that term justified. It's one of Paul's favorite terms. It is a very legal term. It means not guilty or made righteous or in practical terms. We would just say forgiven one scholar said to be justified is to be pronounced legally innocent. And in the clear by God, a great synonym for that again is for forgive . How can I be justified? How can I be for given ? Well, there's, there's two ways that that could work. I could be perfect. I kept the law perfectly. I never send , then I don't need to be justified. I am justified. I don't need to be forgiven. I'm perfect. But of course, nobody does that. So the other approach then is to be pronounced righteous, forgiven made righteous, pronounced, not guilty by trusting in Jesus Christ, being saved through faith in Christ. So we also have believed in Christ Jesus for 16, in order to be justified by faith in Christ and not by works of the law. I can't earn my way into heaven. That road is a dead end . I can't get there based on what I do. I need to trust in Christ. That's what Paul preached to the Galatians. That's what Paul is still preaching to the Galatians. And by the way, Paul will develop this even further. And at greater depth, when we read in the book of Romans verse 19, helps us see how Paul anticipates the objection to this teaching for through the law. I died to the law so that I might live to God, someone who's going to say, if these Gentiles are told that they don't have to keep the law, they're gonna become terrible sinners. And Paul says, absolutely not. Instead, we live in Christ and Christ lives in us. I love what he says in verse 20. I no longer live Christ lives in me. Sometimes we'll say he's a different man after his surgery. And that's what Paul says. I am no longer in control of my life. I'm a different person now that I am in Christ, I have been made a new creature. I'm kind of borrowing here from Romans and I am not gonna get involved in all kinds of sinful behavior because I have been saved through faith in Christ. Jesus. The application here comes in verse 21, the application for you and me, I don't nullify the grace of God for a righteousness or through the law. Then Christ died for no purpose. I don't know of anyone who's teaching today that Christians have to become Jews first and be circumcised and eat kosher and keep the law. If they wanna be saved. I probably somebody out there's doing that. And with the internet, they probably have a website and are propagating it all. They can't. I just don't know about it. And if they're doing it, don't tell me don't, don't shatter my delusions in my bubble. Okay? But I think there is an application here. I think sometimes we can make our response to the gospel into works of law. We can make that believing business, that confessing business, that repenting business, and especially baptism into works of law. They can become something I have done to earn God's favor to merit, salvation, to work off the sins that I have committed. I talked about this last Sunday, when in the nine o'clock hour, when I talked about how to read Galatians. And I want to emphasize that again, particularly if you're reading this and thinking, I don't know why I'm reading this. I am not tempted to become a Jew first so that I can become a Christian second. I don't know. Anying teachers. This is old archaic stuff that has no meaning to Christians today. Ask yourself if you've ever heard somebody say, I know I'm saved. I've been baptized. As soon as somebody says that they are betraying a wrong understanding of baptism and they are using baptism as a work of law, something that results in and causes my salvation based on what I have done that does not mean I'm always so nervous about talking about this. I , I guess I feel okay about it because Paul gets nervous about talking about it. That he'll be misunderstood and that people will think he's just encouraging folks to sin and live in all this kind of way. I get nervous that people will think that I'm somehow suggesting that baptism is not important and even essential to salvation. Baptism is absolutely essential to salvation. We must respond to God's grace and mercy, first Peters 3 21 X 2216. You know these passages, but that does not make baptism into a work of law, into a work of something that we do to merit salvation. And if we are turning it into that, we have fallen smack dab into the false gospel that Paul is rebuking here. So Galatians has wonderful application for us . What I need to be able to say is I'm saved because of Jesus not I'm saved because I'm a good person, not I'm saved because I grew up in the church of Christ, not I'm saved because mom and dad raised me in the church, not I'm saved because I was baptized. I'm saved because I trusted in Jesus Christ to save me. That's where salvation is found. We have believed in Christ Jesus verse 16 in order to be justified by faith in Christ and not by works of the law. God forbid that we should make our joyous and grateful response to God's great gospel and saving work. He has accomplished in his son that we should make that into some kind of work whereby we think we have saved ourselves. Galatians. It still holds power and force today. Doesn't it let's think about Galatians chapter three, as Paul continues to develop these ideas, we'll do that tomorrow. See you on Wednesday vacation Bible school week continues. We'll talk about that a little bit tomorrow on Wednesday. See you then welcome to Wednesday. And we're reading Galatians three versus one to nine. If you're looking for a speaker intro here and get a chance to hear someone talk a little bit about their sermon tonight, it's a vacation Bible school week. So there will not be one of our summer series speakers for us this evening. Instead we'll have our VBS program that we have each year, and that's always something very, very special. It seems to me that we ask kids all year long to sing adult songs. And one Wednesday night out of the year, we finally say to the adults, you know what? You can sing some of these kid songs and those kid songs are good songs. They help us. I hope that you'll be there tonight. And I hope that you will sing out and enjoy thinking through some of the vacation Bible, school themes and lessons that we've been learning and teaching this week. What about Galatians chapter three? One scholar said that Paul has staked out his ground in chapter two versus 15 to 21. And now he's going to prove and defend that ground with a series of arguments in chapter three. And I think that's exactly right. Paul has talked a lot here about his own experiences. And he has used that to say that I am independent of Jerusalem, that my gospel comes from God. And he has even said that he has received the right hand of fellowship from the apostles and even had to do some rebuking. This is the true gospel. This is the gospel. And now he begins to work through some of the reasoning that helps establish that a lot of scripture here. I really love that. And I love the way Paul carefully works down through this. This is a nuanced argument. Sometimes people get a little frustrated with that kind of thing. Hey, don't be afraid to think. Thinking is a good idea. And we want to think through chapter three, with the apostle here, he begins by saying you're foolish. And you been Bewitched. If you had any questions, three , one oh foolish escalations who has Bewitched you. If you had any questions about how serious Paul takes this right there, you got for certain how concerned Paul is about this question. One a what's Paul's emotional mood. What's his temperature? How is he feeling when he writes this? Oh boy, Paul is very exercised about what's going on. And he is so exercised because they know better because the gospel was so clearly preached to them. It wasn't fuzzy. It wasn't vague. We covered this. We talked about this, you know about this. And then the crux of the argument here. Verse two. Did you receive the spirit by works of law or by hearing with faith? There's lots of discussion about receiving the spirit and you'll even hear people today. Talk about spiritual renewal or needing to be more spiritual or finding the spirit. And really for Paul, there's no such thing as a Christian that doesn't have the spirit that, that that's, that animal doesn't exist. He will make reference in chapter six and verse one to you who are spiritual, that may be ironic or tongue in cheek, or even a little sarcastic because for Paul to be a Christian is to have the spirit. And if you don't have the spirit, you can't be a Christian. We actually see that in acts chapter 19, when there's some confusion about the holy spirit, Paul immediately says, I don't think you are a Christian that probably ought to trigger something for us. As we read along here in Galatians, as Paul is thinking about the spirit, I don't believe that he is talking about miracles in chapter three N verse two, particularly because in verse five, he distinguishes between supplying the spirit and working miracles. What he has in verse two, it seems to me is what is promised in acts two in verse 38, Paul is asking, were you baptized? Did you receive the spirit? Were you saved by hearing about the law of Moses or by responding in faith to Jesus Christ? We need to ask ourselves verse three. Did we begin in the spirit? Were we baptized? Did we receive the gift of the holy spirit? And then now we go on from there, try to perfect ourselves with our own good works. No, Paul says we have the spirit and we don't leave the way of the spirit to now get involved in the way of earning salvation and working your way into heaven and doing things to impress God. No , we have received the spirit, the gift of the spirit X 2 38 so that we can be Christians and be right with God and serve God out of a joyous heart. He then moves from there. Maybe not so much moves , but continues to reinforce that idea. When he says in verse six, just as Abraham believed God, it was counted to him as righteousness for Paul. This whole idea is not something new. I wonder sometimes if Paul would not throw a hissy fit, when someone said something about the new Testament for Paul, the new Testament as you. And I know it is the outworking and culmination of everything that God has been doing in what we call the old Testament. And you're gonna get a big dose of that as you continue to read Galatians, because Paul will say, I talked about this again in the lesson about reading Galatians, that we Gentiles Jews, all who have faith in Christ. We are all children of Abraham. We are all the recipients of those promises. Those aren't limited to Israel. Those aren't limited to Jews. God wants to save everybody and we can all be part of God's story. As Abraham believed on God, and it was counted to him for righteousness, he was forgiven. He was justified. He was made to stand right verse six know then verse seven. It's those of faith who are sons of Abraham. If you wanna be justified, if you wanna be forgiven, if you wanna be saved, you have to have faith like Abraham did. You have to trust in God, not trust in yourself. And that in fact is what the scriptures saying. You all nation shall be blessed. The promise of the covenant, the promise of the Messiah was always meant for everybody. So these distinctions whereby we are separated from these people separated from that race. We can't eat with those people. Everybody has to become like me or they're out. All of that. All of that represents regression. You're going the wrong way. God wants all people to come together to be one in Christ. So verse nine, who enters into spiritual blessings, the ones who believe like Abraham, Abraham is the way of faith. Abraham's solution is your solution. He says to the Galatians, don't get sold a false solution more on that tomorrow when we continue in chapter three, I'll see you on Thursday. It is Thursday. We're reading Galatians chapter three versus 10 to 19. Today. I mentioned back at the beginning of the year that I had planned to listen to much of the material that we would read in this year with Paul reading plan, because that's the way it was initially heard. These letters would be read to the church and I wanted to hear it. And I think that is helpful. I would like to hear it with somebody reading it the way Paul wrote it, because Paul is so angry in much of this. Maybe in chapter three, there's more of a pleading tone as he begins to work and really gets some very carefully reasoned argumentation going on here. But I think a lot of Galatians has a shout to it. Now I listen to this on my V app and the voice reading it is Australian. And that, yeah, that kind of changes my conception of Paul. I don't think of him as being crocodile Dundee, but whatever you can do to get some of this in your ear that may help you to think through Galatians, the way the Galatian brethren originally had to think through it. I particularly would want to emphasize that listening to the message would not allow the church to dissect it and just cut it down to its just tiny little bitty pieces and analyze everything over and over again, down to the finest detail, the way that sometimes we do the Bible in Bible class, certainly the holy spirit would know that this is going to be preserved and that in future times people would read it and be able to read it over and over again and look into the details of it. But at least initially you're listening. You are listening to this and you have to keep listening and you can't go back and think about all the nuances of what Paul just said, or you're gonna miss what Paul's saying right now . Bear that in mind. As we read today in chapter three , beginning in 10 , I think Paul is developing here that if you have faith like Abraham, you can be Abraham's child. And he has already said that Abraham's blessings. The blessing promise to Abraham was for all nations, but somebody is gonna say, wait, wait, wait, no , no , no , no , no , you can't be blessed. You can't be a child of Abraham without circumcision. Uh , don't forget. Paul Abraham was circumcised. And of course that's true in Genesis the 17 chapter. So it's all about circumcision. It's all about keeping the law. But Paul says, if you go that way, verse 10 , if you rely on the works of the law, you're under a curse. The law cannot put sin to death and the law could not forgive sin. That's very, very important. The law just pointed out sin. Yes, there are some provisions in the law for sacrificing and you're familiar with Leviticus and some of those kinds of things, but none of those sacrifices would have any power or value if it were not for the sacrifice of Jesus. That's where all that goes. Now that's not in Galatians, that's in Hebrews. And we can talk more about that at some future point in time. But the law doesn't have the ability to deal with sin. The law is just about pointing out sin the way to be justified. Verse 11 and verse 12 is the way of faith because we can't keep the law perfectly. So this idea that I can do business with God, I can be saved. I can be forgiven based on my doing. Paul is saying that that'll never work. That that's broken from the start. If you're in Fort worth and you get on I 20 and you drive west, you will never get to Dallas. Even if you obey the speed limit and drive perfectly, you can't get there doing that. That's what Paul's saying here. The law certainly verse 12 was a means to regulate life under the covenant, but it was never meant to be the basis of the covenant. And so Paul then rather than running away from the embarrassing and scandalous death of Jesus, absolutely embraces it in chapter 13. When he in verse 13, when he quotes from Deuteronomy 21, that the person who's hanged on a tree is under the curse of God. Jesus is cursed for us. And of course we see so much of that in Jesus's teaching. I think about mark chapter 15, where they're screaming at Jesus as he dies, how awful and dreadful that must be as if Jesus is not suffering enough. Let me just keep abuse upon you as well. He claimed to save others, but he can't even save himself. Know if he saved himself, he would not be able to save us. He takes on the curse for us. Now, then in chapter in verse 15, I keep saying chapter instead of verse in verse 15, Paul begins to move toward the discussion of who can be saved. And he begins a new argument here. And I really love how Paul is adding argument upon argument. He doesn't just keep beating the same thing over and over again. Now let's have a human example. We all know about human wills. We all know about human covenants and that you can't change 'em and fix 'em . And so the promises, the covenant, the things that Sinai verse 16, those came after Abraham. They don't change what was promised to Abraham. Let's just go read the will. Paul says who's in it. Not the Jews plural. Now that's how they read it. All nations shall be blessed. D us no, no, no. All nations shall be blessed in Jesus. In fact, Paul wants to argue that if you want the blessing, really the only one who can get the blessing is Jesus. So you'll have to be in Jesus to get that blessing. And there isn't anything. Then since the covenant of Abraham that's gonna change or an all or make the promises to Abraham void, that of course can't happen. God would not do that kind of thing. And it's important to remember that when God made that covenant with Abraham, Abraham didn't do anything. God just called him out of Grayson . Chapter 12, when God reaffirms the covenant in chapter Genesis, chapter 15, Abraham is sleeping. He does nothing. It's all God, God is the one. Who's the hero in this story. And so then that culminates here in verses 18 and 19, where Paul talks about a child inheriting and when a child inherits, it's not because the child earned that it's not a wage. The child receives that because the parent promised it and gave it to the child. That's how we need to think of salvation. We need to think of salvation as the gift of God, we don't earn it. We don't deserve it. We don't merit it. We don't work for it. Yes. I feel obligated to say, we have to respond. We have to open the package, but nobody opens an amazing gift and says, look at me, look how well I undid the bow. Woohoo , man. I am something. When it comes to tearing wrapping paper off, I really had to do something to get this. Oh, please stop. Please stop. So as people then are gonna be hearing this read in the assembly, Paul knows what somebody, I love this. He knows what they're thinking. He knows what they're gonna say. He knows someone's gonna punch their Jewish neighbor next to them and say, well then how come God ever gave us that law promises to Abraham. So great and just took care of everything. How come we ever got the law? Verse 19, he was added to restrain sin. It was added because of transgression. One fellow said, I wish I had said this. The purpose of the law is to expose man's sinfulness. It functions like a flashlight. A flashlight can help identify what has gone wrong with an automobile. The flashlight can call attention to a broken fan belt, but it is of little use in actually fixing the problem. The law spotlight man's broken sinful state, but the law is not the tool we need to fix our brokenness. Amen. And amen. Like I said, I wish I had said that you can't fix a fan belt with the flashlight. The flashlight will show you the problem, but it's not gonna fix it. The law exposed our sinful, but it is not the tool necessary for us to be right with God. That tool is faith. That brings us to God because God will have to fix this. You and I can't fix that. And that's where we're heading tomorrow in Genesis in Galatians, chapter three, as we'll resume reading in verse 20, see you on Friday. What a week it's been with vacation Bible school this week. Finally, we get to Friday, see you tomorrow. It is Friday. You made it. You made it through the week. We've had a great week of vacation Bible school and I'm to the bottom of my cup of coffee. We're starting our reading today in Galatians three. And in verse 20, that's a very difficult verse. One commentator said he knew of 250 different interpretations of this verse. What does it mean? An intermediary implies more than one, but God is one. The contrast here seems to be between the mediated law. Moses brought the law from God to the people and to the promises that were given directly to Abraham without a mediator. But it's, it's , it's not a clear, the verse here is not clear to me exactly what Paul is, meaning by that and how that fits in his argumentation. But he is certainly developing verse 21 that the law is not bad. No, no, no. The law was good, but it couldn't give life. Remember our illustration from yesterday, if you're broke down on the side of the road, you're glad to have a flashlight. You need the flashlight to see what's going on. But the flashlight isn't going to fix a broken fan belt. That's not its job. So we need something. Besides the law, the law, in fact, verse 22 was designed to bring us to Jesus. That's what it could do is it could point to the need for a savior. That's what this is all about. And silver 24, the law was our guardian. That word guardian is a word. We lack an English equivalent to it speaks of the special slave who walked the young master to school. Made sure the young man didn't end up distracted and not in school. The , the slave this guardian would make sure that he got there. But of course that guardian is not the point. The point is to get to school. The law is not the point. The point is to get to Christ, get to Christ first 25. Now that faith has come. We're no longer under this Tudor under this guardian slave now. And watch Paul's shift here to you. He shifts from we to you in Christ Jesus verse 26. You are all sons of God through faith. You are all sons of God through faith for as many of you, verse 27, as where baptized into Christ have put on Christ, look carefully, and you'll see that Paul sees no contradiction between the idea of the way of faith and needing to respond in faithful obedience and be baptized. Paul would never classify baptism as a work of merit or something that is done to deserve or earn salvation. I think he would be absolutely mystified that people have missed it in that kind of fashion. He is not contradicting James chapter two and James is not contradicting in chapter two. What Paul says, Roman's chapter four. They are on the same page. Of course they're on the same page. They are divinely inspired writers and baptism is not in contradiction to the way of faith. It is part of the way of faith and these passages right here before us today, do a great job of helping us see that the question may be that we ought to ask, as we conclude here, this business of Jew , Greek, slavery , male, or female, you all want in Christ. Jesus. What , what does that mean? What , what , what what's Paul developing there? Certainly just because I become a Christian because I'm baptized. That doesn't mean that I lose my racial identity. I , I , I was baptized the Caucasian. I came up outta the water, a Caucasian. If you were baptized the slave that did not set you free. You, you went in the water slave, you came up outta the water. You're still a slave. You go in the water, a man, you come up outta the water. Guess what? Yeah, you're still a man. This does not obliterate all distinctions between the sexes between people. That's not Paul's point. In fact, Paul and Ephesians will write very specifically that there are certain roles that men and women need to fulfill. And we've already read in Corinthians. When he has said that in the assembly, there are some things that women are not to do. Paul is not destroying all distinctions. He's not, oblating all distinctions between men and women are between people. And those who try to use relations 3 28 to try to do that. Particularly evangelical feminist, who are trying to argue that women can have any role in the assembly or any role in the church. It's a terrible mistake. They are resting the scriptures here. What Paul is talking about, mark this in your Bible is who can inherit women. Couldn't inherit under Jewish law slaves. Couldn't inherit Gentiles. Couldn't inherit under Jewish law. So if the blessings of Abraham are to be distributed today, according to the rules that everybody knew, Paul needs to say, these people can inherit somebody be sitting there saying, ah , those Gentiles they can inherit. Yes they can. Yes they can. Because they're in Christ. Through faith in Christ being identified with him being baptized into Christ, you can inherit the promises of Abraham. That's what Paul's going for here. This passage doesn't really say anything about being one in Jesus, black, white, rich, poor, et cetera . All of that, what he's saying is that any one black, white, rich, poor male, female slave free can be an heir to the promises of Abraham in Jesus Christ. That is what Paul has said. What a powerful chapter chapter three really is. We've had the chance to kind of work down through it slowly. I'm liking the pace of this reading schedule this year. We need some time to think through this. Remember this starts and comes out of chapter two in verse 16, we know that a person is not justified by works of the law, but through faith in Jesus Christ, what does that mean? Then as you look back over chapter three, we received the spirit. As we respond to the gospel in faithful obedience, Galatians three and verse two, we are like Abraham Galatians three and verse six. He believed in God. We believe in God. That's how we're forgiven, counted righteous. We are not going to rely upon the works of the law, the works of the law of Moses or the works of any other law that we've dreamed up and made up on our own. The , the law can't save us. The law just points out that we are centers . The promises that were made to Abraham were made before the law of Moses, Galatians three 16, the law of Moses can't change or Inno , the promises that were made to Abraham Galatians three and verse 16, inheritance doesn't come then by law verse 18, it comes by faith. The law was designed to bring us to Jesus so that we could have faith in him to save us. Now that faith has come verse 25. We are not under that law. We're not under the guardian. Now we can all, all verse 26, be sons of God through faith. Remember the problem here is some people are binding that old law. Paul says we don't need that old law. We are all now able to inherit the promises that were made to Abraham in Christ. When we exercise the way of faith, that's what Galatians three is all about. And next week, Paul will continue to talk about being an he, one of his favorite ways of talking about being a Christian. What a great week. It's been big week of vacation Bible school at west side . Now, I guess we set our sites on more summer series and we start already thinking about the youth lectures that are coming up at the end of July . I'm glad that you listened this week. 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