Galatians 5

Galatians 5 has Paul nailing the Galatian church with the struggles they are going through regarding faith versus the law.  “For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery”.  Faith in Christ gives us freedom through God’s grace – the law no longer owns us.  But we need to stay committed to that faith.  “You who would be justified by the law; you have fallen away from grace….For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for anything, but only faith working through love”.  While the law doesn’t go away with Christ, it is not the way to salvation.  Faith alone is.

Paul makes it clear that the freedom we get through Christ is our ticket to loving and serving each other.  “Do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another”.  It isn’t our ticket to do anything and everything we want.  If it feels good, we shouldn’t just do it.  In fact, Paul tells us “But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh”.  Paul wrote to the Corinthian church that temptation could not control us.  God gives us the Holy Spirit to live within us and to help us live victoriously.  We walk successfully when we walk with the Spirit.

If you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law”.  God’s grace gives us freedom.  It sets us free from the law.  Jesus is the freedom.  Paul goes on to describe what living without the Spirit looks like: “Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions,  divisions, envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these”.  These are things that are not glorifying to God – things that are sinful that the Spirit of God would not guide us into.  God’s Spirit will direct us to walk in righteousness and godliness if we simply follow Him.

What the Spirit does in us looks completely different – “the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control;  against such things there is no law.”   Nine qualities that are the result of the Holy Spirit living in us and through us.  If we are truly Christ followers, “those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires”.  We no longer live for ourselves.  “If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit”.  Paul challenges us to let the Spirit of God control how we live and what we do.  It’s not about letting our feelings and desires run free.  Being a Christ Follower is about letting the Holy Spirit guide how we act and that will be godly living that honors God.

2 responses to this post.

  1. […] via Galatians 5 — Arlin Sorensen’s Thoughts on Scripture […]

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