Friday, June 27, 2008

The Promises of God

Today, we pick up our study in Galatians 3:20 where it says, “Now a mediator is not a mediator of one, but God is one.” The very idea of a mediator implies that there are two parties involved. In the given of the Law, it was God and the People with Moses playing the mediator. By the way, mediator is king of like a middleman. However, when God made the covenant with Abraham, there was only one party; Himself. We see this in Genesis 15 in that God actually placed Abraham asleep and made the covenant with Himself and Abraham had nothing to do with it.

The same can be said of the promise that Christ has given to us in salvation. It was between Christ and Christ, who is God. Paul said in 2 Corinthians 5:18-19, “And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation; To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation.” It is not conditional upon us keeping the Law.

Notice v.21, “Is the law then against the promises of God? God forbid: for if there had been a law given which could have given life, verily righteousness should have been by the law.” The Law could not give life in that it only pointed out the sinfulness of mankind.

Notice v.22, “But the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe.” Again, the Law could not save, only the promise that was given to Abraham that looked forward to the Seed could save and our faith in that promise. Those in the Old Testament looked forward to Jesus while those of us in the New Testament look back at Jesus. Enoch even looked past the first coming of Jesus and saw the second (Jude 14).

Notice vv.23-25, “But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed. Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster.” The Law simply tutored us until Christ came and justified us by faith. The Law showed us that we needed a Savior!

Many times, if not most of the time, God does not give us things until we have learned to appreciate them. It reminds me of a little boy who came to his father one day and asked to borrow the car. The father replied that the boy could borrow the car only after he cut his long hair. The boy responded by saying that Jesus had long hair. The father responded by letting his son know that Jesus walked everywhere He went too! Things have changed. We are no longer bound by the law!

Notice v.26, “For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.” “Children” literally means “sons”.

Notice v.27, “For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.” This is not referring to water baptism but Spirit baptism. The act of baptism denotes dedication to the service of him in whose name we are baptized. We see an example of this in the Old Testament with Moses. It says in 1 Corinthians 10:2, “And all were baptized to Moses in the cloud and in the sea…” That means that they became consecrated, or dedicated, or bound to him as their leader and lawgiver. So, we see the same thing here. We see the same in 1 Corinthians 12:13 where it says, “For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.”

Notice v.28, “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.” We are all simply followers of Christ and are all one in Him. It says in Romans 10:12 “For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him.” Fortunately, God is not bias like we are.

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