Element Christian Church
Galatians Week 19: For Freedom's Sake
Locations & Times
  • Element Christian Church
    4890 Bethany Ln, Santa Maria, CA 93455, USA
    Sunday 9:00 AM, Sunday 10:45 AM
Welcome to Element
We strive to ensure the biggest thing people think when they hear about Element is Jesus! We are a Gospel centered community who finds our identity in Jesus.

4th Friday Fun, Film and Food

eKids (grade 1-6) are invited to come hang out for 2 hours while their caretakers enjoy some time to themselves. Sign up required.


Escape From Element

Students in grades 6-12 are invited to come solve puzzles, follow clues, and figure out if their team can "Escape From Element". Sunday May 28th from 12:30p-2:30p in The Barn


Change Their View - Incredible Me - One in a Minion

See dates and details PLUS sign up below.

Mission Trip Informational Meeting - TODAY
Find out more about our upcoming trips to Thailand as well as Arizona and how you can be a part of them!

Sunday, May 21st at 12:30pm

Junior Summer Camp

Students in grades 4-6 are invited to Hartland Christian camp this summer for a time of learning, growing and have the most fun ever! We also are in need of a couple parents to come as group leaders. See all details and reserve your spot by clicking the link.

Newcomer Meet and Greet
If you are new or newer to Element, we want to invite you to our monthly Meet & Greet. Every last Sunday of the month, following each service we will host a Meet & Greet in our lounge which is just across the double doors of the Sanctuary next to the coffee station. Each month we will have at least 1 Elder, a representative from our eFamilies team and another staff member to help introduce you to who Element is, why we do some of the things we do and how you and your family can become better connected.

We know coming to a new church can be hard and often intimidating and that’s just step 1. Step 2 is actually getting connected to that church which can be even more intimidating for some so hopefully this is something that can help.

*If you have kids in one of our classrooms, please feel free to pick them up before coming because we'd love to meet them too!

New to Element? Need prayer? Just want to connect?

Click the link to fill out our Digital Connect Card so we can know you were here and send you a "Welcome" email.

Church Center - the app
Free in your phone's app store and a huge resource to stay in touch with Element! Download today!

Help Needed!!

Click the link below to see all the various areas you can serve at Element and sign up to help

This week's song list
Interested in looking for some of the songs we sang this week? Here's the titles and original artists:

Glorious Day - Passion
Great Things - Phil Wickham
You're Everything - Hillsong
Hope of the Wind - Hillsong Worship
My One Comfort - The Modern Post
Grace Alone - The Modern Payer
Galatians - To The Churches In Galatia
Week 19: For Freedom's Sake

For thousands of years, fellowship with God had been established through observance of the Law, but the Law was always a time of winter—a time of waiting. There are different modes of travel that are appropriate during the winter season. If you try to use winter modes of travel (e.g., snowshoes, snowmobiles, etc.) during springtime (when everything has melted), you will get stuck and no longer be able to travel. Similarly, the false teachers in Galatia wanted the Galatians to use the Law in a season where it was no longer needed—through His life, death, and resurrection, Jesus fulfilled the Law.
• As in N.T. Wright’s analogy, how do you often “try to travel across the lake” – on your old ways or through Jesus?

If we want to walk in relationship with Jesus, we cannot cling to the Law. If we do cling to the Law, we are declaring that we don’t want to belong to Jesus. Paul says throughout the book of Galatians that we have been set free from empty religion (a passionless religion with no joy or life in it), fear-based behavioral modification (thinking God is looking to give us a spanking when we get out of line), and pursuit of pleasures that never deliver what they promise (the futility of being our own God).

Read Galatians 5:1-4.
• What does it mean to be truly set free by the Gospel?
• How have you experienced freedom from the following?
-empty religion
-fear-based behavioral modification
-pursuit of pleasures that never deliver what they promise.

If we try to be our own god, then we are left to answer all of life’s big questions on our own:
• “What’s your purpose in life?”
• “What do you do with suffering and loss?”
If you are your own god, you rely on yourself for everything. Paul is telling us something we so desperately need to hear in our culture: we have been set free from that weight. We have been set free for what purpose? Freedom.

• Do you struggle answering questions like, “What’s your purpose in your life?” and “What do you do with suffering and loss?”
• What do your answers, or lack thereof, reveal about who is in control of your life?
• How have you been set free from relying on yourself?

If we could boil a cultural definition of freedom down to one sentence, it would probably be: “Freedom is ultimately being able to do what I want most.” If you try to block people from what they want to do most, they feel as though you’ve taken their “freedom” from them. The Bible says that in Jesus, we have been set free to instead walk in REAL freedom…freedom from ourselves.

• How does the culture we live in define freedom?
• How could we explain what true freedom is to the people who buy into that cultural definition?

The Gospel of Jesus Christ not only saves us, it sustains us—meaning we never move on or graduate from the Gospel. We must preach the Gospel to ourselves. From the moment God wakes our hearts until the moment He calls us home, we make our stand in/on the Gospel.

• How does the Gospel save and sustain us?
• Why is it important that the Gospel provides salvation and sustenance?

Grace is beautiful because while it freely acknowledges our failures it doesn’t gloss over our shortcomings, it covers them. The Law will never be a comfort, whether it’s Judaism or our own personal law; the Law can do nothing other than condemn us. Grace leads us to remember that we are saved and sustained by God Himself. That is good news.

• Do you believe grace is beautiful in how it acknowledges AND covers our failures?
• How can we celebrate the sweetness of grace together?
• Take an assessment of your life. How much time do you focus on yourself/issues of life vs. the Gospel?
• How can we challenge each other to focus more on the Gospel this week, and less on ourselves?

Paul couldn’t be more clear with the Galatians as to what ultimately counts: it is the Gospel.

Galatians Reading Plan

For a deeper study of the passages covered this week, download this helpful guide


Online Giving

Give electronically of your tithes and offerings here: