Element Christian Church
Galatians Week 20: The Motivation
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 aim to glorify God by teaching and living out the Scriptures, transforming community into Gospel community, and planting churches.
Newcomer Meet and Greet - Today
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!
The Classics Follow Up Meeting
The Classics, a ministry designed to serve the 60+ generation of Element, is hosting a follow up meeting happening immediately after this service in The Barn. If you are interested in learning more about this ministry or helping, please head over at approximately 10:15 (immediately following 1st service).

Escape From Element - Today

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.


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.


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:

Galatians - To The Churches In Galatia
Week 20: The Motivation

In these verses, the Apostle Paul will write about wisdom by showing how looking at the end of our journey can influence our present—our motivation. Why do we do what we do? Why is motivation so important to how we live? To put it simply, foolish people and wise people can start off with the same goals, but foolish people give up because they focus on the now and not the finish line. We can become easily discouraged by the “now,” where things can seem hard and circumstances may not work out the way we want. Wise people know that it doesn’t matter where we start; it matters where we end. Wisdom knows to trust God faithfully in all circumstances because that brings longevity.
Read Galatians 5:5-7.
• Do you ever think about where you want to end up in life?
• If you knew it was your last day on earth, what would matter to you?
• What motivates you: honoring God or keeping His “rules?” How can those things be different?

There is a problem of evil in the human heart. We want to live for “the now,” not for legacy. How do we change the human heart? We cannot; God alone has the power to transform our wayward hearts! Paul emphasizes that the reasons behind our obedience are crucial. After all, Paul and the false teachers would agree that we are not supposed to sin. However, they had very different reasons for why we should obey God, and the reason is everything.

• How does the Gospel of salvation, through free grace, incentivize you to a life of love and holiness?
• Why is the reason behind our motivation important?

1. The reason behind the motivation is important – When we falsely think that grace means we don’t need to honor God with how we live, that’s a hindrance to true life!

Paul is exposing how the false teachers have gone off-track. They think they are getting more obedient by following the Law, but they are actually becoming less obedient! By striving to keep the Law, they are not honoring Jesus as their Lord, who died for them.

• What laws/rules do you strive to keep?
• Does fear, pride, or love drive your motivation?

2. What IS the new motivation? – The difference between Paul’s focus on the Gospel and the false teacher(s) is an approach to understanding our plight.

If we truly believed God would never reject us, if our sins could never condemn us, how would we live? Gal 5:5 For through the Spirit, by faith, we ourselves eagerly wait for the hope of righteousness. The word hope means a certainty, an absolute conviction. We do not merely think that God will make us righteous and keep us righteous; we have a certainty that He will do it because of Christ’s death and resurrection.

• What motivation does the Gospel of grace provide?
• Have you ever found the Gospel offensive? How?
• How is the Gospel affirming inside and offensive outside?

3. How this motivation works – We are not motivated to live in God-honoring ways out of fear of our present or future; we are instead motivated BY hope.

Jonathan Edwards said, “No matter how many of our acts of justice, generosity and devotion, there is nothing given to God if God is not the end or ultimate aim for what is given.” If we do something with the aim of gaining something, then our motive is self-focused, short-sighted, and it won’t last. A Christian’s motivation comes out of God’s goodness and free grace—not only as it benefits us—but as it goes back out into the world. We choose to love others for God’s sake, because He first loved us.

• What does hope mean?
• How have you been motivated by hope?

Paul is using vivid language to show what the real issues are in how and why we live the way we do. We don’t earn God’s grace, but we can be a people who live in His grace.

• Is your obedience limited (by your motivation)? How?
• Where do you need to repent of wrong motivation and return to the hope of the Gospel?

Galatians Reading Plan

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


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