Galatians 3:19 says that the Law was given alongside God’s promise, to show people their sins. The word “sin” in that passage means “a deviation.” So, Paul is saying that the law was given because God’s people were deviating, or departing from an agreed upon course. Well, if you’re like me, you’re terrible with directions. God’s point was to show the Israelites that, like me, they were bad at directions. They didn’t know which way “true north” was. So He gave them the law, alongside of the promise. But somewhere along the way, God’s people superimposed the law over the promise and said that you can’t have the promise without the law, which was never God’s intention.
God’s intent was to give them, and us, through Jesus, an inheritance…an identity as sons and daughters. Ephesians 1 says, “God’s purpose was that we Jews, and now you Gentiles have also heard the truth, the Good News that God saves you. And when you believed in Christ, He identified you as His own by giving you the Holy Spirit. The Spirit is God’s guarantee that He will give us the inheritance He promised and that He has purchased us to be His own people.” So often we look to the law for our identity. But your identity was set the moment you accepted Christ and began the journey. He calls you a son or daughter, and you can rest assured that is your identity no matter where you are on the path.