Galatians 4: Seize the Day

Galatians 4: Seize the Day

DAY 2 OF 4

Did you know that before you became a Christian you were the devil’s prisoner? He didn’t own you, but he had captured you so as to make you do what he wanted! That’s the position of every person who has not come to know Jesus as Lord, and who has not been rescued by Him. We are all born into Satan’s kingdom. Christians are those who have been re-born into God’s kingdom.

One of the sad things that sometimes seems to happen to Christians is that, after having being rescued by God from the terrible slavery and bondage under which they once lived in the devil’s service, they get hooked on the desire to go back! It’s as if they haven’t really understood the incredible thing that’s happened to them in coming to know the Lord in the first place.

That’s what Paul is saying here about the Galatians. There was a time when they did not know God. They were ignorant of Him (see also Ephesians 2:12). They were in Satan’s kingdom, slaves of his, doing what he wanted. There were things in their lives that took the place of God, but were not, of course, God at all. 

Then, as they heard the Gospel, they came to really know the true and living God. Or, to put it more accurately, they came to be known by God. At the same time, they were released from their previous slavery to the evil one, Satan (that’s when the Stronger Man delivered them from the strong man!).

One of Satan’s favourite lies is to try to make people think that they can get on in life only if they do their own thing. When we come to know the Lord, Satan doesn’t give up on us! He still keeps lying to us.

In the earlier studies, we saw that there were Jews who wanted the non-Jewish Christians to observe a whole list of rules and regulations in addition to believing in Christ. That’s Satan’s lie. He says: ‘God’s GRACE is not enough... ‘; ‘The CROSS is not enough... ‘; ‘FAITH ALONE is not enough... ‘. 

Satan tries to get us back into his slavery by hoodwinking us into thinking that we still have to be doing certain things in order to please God. In this way, he undermines GRACE, the CROSS, and FAITH ALONE.

In the case of the Galatians, they had reverted to the observance of certain days as being of special religious importance. They had gone back to trusting in that observance, rather than simply trusting in God’s grace and the cross through faith alone.

Is it a good thing for a Christian to be disciplined, and to read the Bible each day and to spend time in prayer to the Lord? And is it a good thing for a Christian to try to share the Good News about Jesus with others? Of course it is! Can you see that all of these things are right? 

They are good. They are appropriate. But they are a terrible ‘law’ if we think they are the measure by which God accepts us. That’s the lie that Satan whispers to us, and so we become focused on what we can do, not on what Christ has done.

Ask yourself if you are doing certain things—perhaps out of habit, or because someone told you to do so—which have become a substitute for trusting totally in the Lord. These may include Bible reading, prayer, going to church, ‘being good’, going to Bible study, or playing or singing in a Church music group. (Of course all these are right things to do.) 

It may also include not doing certain things, such as not using bad language, not looking at crude movies, not getting into drugs or playing around with sex. (Again, all of these are right things to avoid.)

The whole point is this: being a Christian is not a matter of ‘do’s’ and ‘don’ts’. It is not a matter of laws and rules and regulations. It concerns faith in Jesus Christ and a trust in Him. It is He who makes us acceptable to God, our Father. 

When we really know that God loves us and has accepted us through Christ, then we will automatically want to do what is right and what pleases Him, and we will want to avoid the things that are not right and which would displease Him. When we know that we are already accepted by God, then we will no longer do such things in order to be accepted, but because we want to please Him and obey Him.

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Galatians 4: Seize the Day

Jesus Christ has a right to be God’s heir and to receive the inheritance. We do not. We enjoy this wonderful prospect and promise only by God’s grace. It is only because He has brought us into His family that we are join...

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