Galatians: Law Vs. Spirit

Tried a new experience today, and it was really cool. The last few days I’ve been wanting to go through the book of Galatians in the bible. It’s just been something on my heart. But every time I opened it to read it, I kinda just skimmed through it, simply looking over the highlights and notes I’ve made on it in the past. This morning I was reminded of a verse, Revelations 1:3,

Blessed is the one who reads aloud the words of this prophecy, and blessed are those who hear, and who keep what is written in it, for the time is near.

Right off the back, the author is saying that those who read the book of Revelations, “this prophecy,” aloud will be blessed. It’s not talking about the Word of God in general. But reading over this verse made me want to listen to the book of Galatians aloud that way I wouldn’t be distracted by the words in the book, my highlights and my notes.

At first, I was only listening to the book, but what Paul was saying was really make me look at the book differently and created a lot of thoughts so I wrote them down and here’s what I wrote:

  • Galatians
    • It is through faith that one has life
      • faith is obedience
    • The Law had protected us, but faith now saves us
    • Christ makes us alive
      • We are true children of Abraham
      • Abrahams promise now falls on us
  • Chapter 4
    • we were slaves
      • right time God saved us through Son
        • we have Spirit of God that makes us call “Abba Father”
    • why do you want to be slaves again?
      • why go back to the strict rules?
      • Paul is free from these laws
    • what motivates us to do good things? do we do it all the time? or only certain situations?
      • do we only do good things when we are around certain people or in certain environments? or when we want to make ourselves look good? what motivates us?
    • if you live under the law
      • human attempt: (Hager, Mt. Sinai) -brings conflict and persecutes God’s attempt.
      • God’s attempt: (Sarah, Heavenly Jerusalem) – saves us, and now has more children
    • My words: What we do in human attempt will never out do what God does. We become impatient with God and do things our way and we see the growth of our doings. This growth won’t last. For me, it’s creating strict rules. I feel better when I create strict rules for God. But when I don’t obey them. I bully and persecute myself telling myself I’m not good enough for Christ.  God’s way is telling me, no, you are good enough, come join me. But I keep telling His way, I can’t until I obey my law. I’m not worthy or good enough. Obviously my heart isn’t right cause I can’t obey my rules.
  • Chapter 5
    • Christ truly sets us free. Don’t go back.
    • Me: If I’m trying to find favor with God by making a castle of rules around His law(which I am) then I must obey everyone of those rules absolutely perfectly, otherwise I’ll never achieve Christ’s perfection.
      • When I try to find favor with God through perfection, then I become cut off from Him and His grace.
    • What is important is faith, expressing itself in love
    • (What/who held me back from freedom?)
    • use freedom to serve others
    • Let the Spirit guide your lives, NOT the law.
    • When I follow the Spirit I am not under obligation of the law. (I feel like this is saying it is more important to do His Will than for you to not sin. And that maybe, God can use your sin. But at any rate, He can work around your sin, if you obey His Will/the Spirits Calling.
    • If you live your life to the Spirit, you won’t have to worry about living for the flesh.
    • If you live your life to the flesh, you won’t live to the Spirit
    • Nail your passions to the cross.
      • DO NOT be conceited or jealous.
  • Chapter 6
    • Gently help others back on path
    • Share burdens
    • You are not to important
      • your plans, your life, anything really that holds dear to your heart or comforts, is not too important to help others.
    • Don’t compare yourself
    • share good
    • you will harvest what you plant
      • if you focus on following the law, you will plant a let of guilt in yourself. nothing good grows from guilt.
      • if you follow the Spirit, your heart will plant love.
    • Don’t be tired of doing good. You will harvest in the end
      Which do you want to plant? The Flesh or the Spirit?
      • sometimes, doing good and following the Spirit won’t be as rewarding as you want it to be. but guess what, it’s not about you. keep following the Spirit. In the end, you will harvest.
    • Closing Words:
      • Don’t force teaching of strict rules
      • Only the cross of Christ will save you
      • Strict following of the law(if followed perfectly) only gives you something to brag about.
        • do you want your worth/value found in your boasting of perfect following of strict rules?
        • does following strict rules make you more spiritual/superior than others? no.
        • when you don’t follow rules perfectly, you make yourself feel worth because you feel your value is decreased.
      • As for me, may I never boast about anything except the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ.
        • the cross makes your interest in the world null.
      • Don’t let anyone bare on you (these things) following the law strictly
        • in other words, don’t let anyone make you feel guilty if you don’t follow their man made laws perfectly and strictly.

 

  • Transformation of your heart happens when you obey the Spirit, NOT the law
  • We have to be obedient to faith, not to the law
  • It’s not the act of sin that kills you, it’s the act of seeking perfection that kills you
  • Use freedom to serve others, not to sin.
    • let the Spirit guide your life, don’t let the law guide your life.
  • We get so caught up in sin and the law, we forget who Christ is

In the end, Galatians taught me that when you focus on following the law, it distracts us from following and hearing the Spirit. But if we do even hear the Spirit, the law we are trying to follow tells us that we aren’t good enough to follow It. I realized a lot of the people I look up to, who I can see has their hearts on fire for God, those people aren’t focused on the law. They are focused on doing the will of God. I see how them doing the will of God has transformed their hearts full of love and joy for others. That law can’t provide that. Only the Spirit.

“I finally get the things figured out, and then they come up with a New Testament!”
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