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June 21, 2022 12:01 am
Justification is a marvelous blessing of the gospel. But God gives an even greater blessing to His people in salvation: He adopts them as His beloved children. Today, Derek Thomas considers the grace Christians receive as God's chosen heirs.
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The apostle Paul wrote to the church in Galatia because false teachers were deceiving the people there is a sense in which these Judaizers want to support the Christian church box under the old covenant under the bondage the imprisonment the way in which the law was like a big dock cloud that imprisons them the book of Galatians is a strong defense of the gospel he wrote it because he, since the churches there were drifting from the truth.
They forgotten what Christ had done for them that his work was finished today. I'm Renewing Your Mind, Dr. Derek Thomas turns her attention to Paul's plea to the Galatian churches to remember their adoption that believers are children of God but him back. This is secessions seven and we pick it up now and this 25 of chapter 3 down to chapter 4 and verse seven. Let's recap a little. Paul in the previous section in chapter 3 began to look at things not simply from the perspective of our individual experience of the gospel, but more in terms of the historical manner in which the gospel was revealed. So he went to Abraham for example talk about a covenant that God made with Abraham, then he went forward 420 something years to when the law was given so he's no longer looking at this from an individual perspective is looking at it from the perspective of the way in which the calculus of the gospel was historically given, so the gospel came first with Genesis justification by faith being reckoned righteous came first on the law came subsequent to that and now Paul sees this as an opportunity to further extrapolate on the purpose and function of the law of the Lord in salvation history. Why, for example, there now no requirements to obey. See for example the kosher food laws. The issue in the church in Antioch that got Paul and Peter all bent out of shape and the answer is that they have been fulfilled. The answer is, as Paul will say in this section. We've gone from being children in kindergarten to being adults to being full-blown children of God, to being heirs of God, but he does this. First of all, historically and tracing the purpose of the law in the old covenant and why compliance with certain boundary markers is part and parcel of that administration of the gospel rather than of this administration of the gospel. So let's pick it up in the chapter 3 in verse 25 but now that faith has come, we are no longer under God. Jim he brought in to play.
The idea that one of the functions of the law is to put us under a daunting under a tutor. It's like being in school. It's like learning to read. It's like learning to type. It's like learning grammar arts like learning the order of the Kings and Queens of England essay had to do one time cycling back to school is a sense in which the old covenant. The Old Testament is like kindergarten he wants to draw from the world to the Greco-Roman world's Galatia. The concept of inheritance and what it is that that means of coming-of-age and so on you under tutor.
Send God Jim's let's go back to chapter 3 verse 27, as many of the viewers were baptized into Christ have put on Christ there is neither Jew. No Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.
Now don't over interpret these verses, Paul isn't saying that there's no male or female, as though he was living in 2019. The somebody say, but as far as the gospel is concerned the gospel doesn't show one way for males and one for females.
The New Testament brings to play into play, the absolute and total equality of male and female.
As far as the gospel is concerned, that's something that only Christianity can say all of the other world religions do not in any shape will form suggest what the New Testament is suggesting here and if you are Christ's, then you are Abraham's offspring is according to the promise and goes full-circle he wants, especially the Gentile Christians to understand their heritage.
The spiritual heritage that the children of Abraham. Abraham is the father he wants the Jewish Christians to understand that folklore saved and brought into a right relationship with God under the old covenant in precisely the same way as they are in the new government. He wants them to understand the Gentiles also children of Abraham, and that is all kinds of consequences, and one of which is to understand that you can go back into the Old Testament and read the Old Testament in a way that it is addressing us is not just addressing Jews is not just addressing ancient Israel, but the lessons of the Old Testament are lessons for the Christian church now having introduced the idea of an air and air. According to the promise. The promise that had first been given to Abraham that's fulfilled in Christ. And now that we've passed from the old covenant into the new covenant we are heirs in a different way. We have come of age. I want to secede. What that means is so chapter 4 and verse one.
I mean that an air as long as he is a child is no different from a slave, though he is the owner of everything. There's a sense in which these Judaizers 1 to 2 parts. The Christian church back under the old covenant under the bondage the imprisonment the way in which the law was like a big dock cloud that imprisons them and he wants them to see that that's not the trajectory of salvation history, the trajectory of salvation history is to graduate from kindergarten to being full blown adults and inheritance and heirs now you might be an air but so long as you under tutors and guardians. You are not inherited. There is a story that he was full), and one of his books due attention to its 1999 the Duke and Duchess of Northampton. They had a son who is going to inherit when he was 18 and he was now 14, I knew he would inherit a million pounds under he would have, in addition to that, to an annual salary of half a million pounds substantial inheritance under they went to court and to said no he couldn't inherit until he was 25 because there was a repetition of further squandering among British aristocracy that was the concept of coming-of-age that you have a certain age you inherit. But until I think your under God to answer your under tutors. I was assuming the Greco-Roman world the Galatian world would have been more than used to that idea of her children being put under God, Jim's sending talked and so on. But that one free. And Paul is sinking here in terms of the function of the law.
The law in its ceremonial aspects, the law, but now these Judaizers wants to put Christians under so what was the function of those ceremonial markers. What is the function of circumcision was the function of the food laws. For example, why was a drunk report. Why was it wrong to eat shellfish is nothing wrong in and of itself absolutely nothing. Peter was taught that the vision on the rooftop to next chapter 10 when he saw Jean unclean animals and these were all to be taken in good conscience, and eaten in good conscience. There is no way you can argue vegetarianism from the Bible. It may be a personal choice and a personal ourselves on but you can't inflict this on Christendom. That's bondage. That's exactly what these Judaizers are doing here you are free in Christ, and you must treasure that freedom producer was talking about in the captivity of the Christian churches on that freedom is a very important concept, freedom from the consciences of other people. The meddling and legalizing consciences of other people and are constantly pointing their finger in sync… You know you should be doing this, whatever that is and you should be doing that, whatever that is. And so I mean that an air verse one of chapter 4 as long as he is a child's is no different from a slave, though he is the owner of everything. I remember a time when my children and we were not model parents by any means absolutely not.
But I remember the first time that I had to leave the house. My wife had gone to a Bible study somewhere and this is Belfast and things from were very unhappy and the troubles in the 1980s and the telephone goes and supports cell phones and so on, and some is in hospital and that I needed to go on the need to go right there and then the nurse said to the two children. They were at that age where it wasn't quite ready for a babysitter, but we haven't time to get a babysitter I needed to go so I laid down 400 rules and I'm talking right, you must not do this you cannot do that you cannot do their thing.
I knew that half of them will be obeyed. What I said above everything else.
If you don't debate any of the others, you must obey this one. You may not open the door unless it's me or your mother do not open the door unless it's me or your mother will run the rules. Lots and lots of rules, most of which I think were broken but that's the nature of childhood lots of rules and when they say to why no one why and he said because I say so and thus of good parenting. I know that but you're so exasperated and music because I say so because these rules are going to go to shape you actually going to show how much the sooner you really how much of the dynamics in still and you know why you need the gospel is a sense in which the Old Testament exacerbated the rules in order to teach demonstrably teach the need for Christ on the need for the gospel, not just individually.
In our experience, but the redemptive historically so the song can say in the prologue.
The law came by Moses and grace and truth came by Jesus and where in the days of grace and truth. No, as I said in the previous lesson. That's a relative contrast but is made in absolute terms. Paul does something similar in second Corinthians 3 and he talks about the period of the Old Testament is a period of darkness the bondage and saw the period of death in comparison to the new covenant. Well, I mean that the air as long as he is a child is no different from a slave, though he is the owner of everything that is under guardians and managers until the date set by his father in the same way. We also when we were children were enslaved to the elementary principles of the world. Lots of views about interpreting that's expression. The elementary principles of the world, but at least in the context it seems to me that Paul is still talking about the period of the old testament and dishonest were children, we are subject to all of the minutiae of the law teaching elementary things. No ABC's language grammar structure. The periodic table, the bones in the body, and no one on the back and do all of that again. I'm glad I did it to taught me lots of things but I've graduated from that now and that's what Paul wants us to see in verse four but when the fullness of time would come. Now what is he talking about, but I don't think he's talking first of all about Roman roads send the Greek language and the fact that the gospel can spread across the entire Europe without a translator extraordinary providential privileges to be sure, but what Paul is talking about. This is talk about Abraham's talked about the law coming 400 years later he's talked about being under tutors and guardians said that the law is certainly the ceremonial law of the Old Testament function did not way to exacerbate the fact that you cannot, by law, make us self-righteous with God. But then the fullness of time came when the seed not the seeds but the seed which was the promise to Abraham came, Jesus, when all of a sudden the gospel flourished in color as opposed to black-and-white interested in the Old Testament, but it was like watching a black-and-white movie and then some of us remember the first time we saw color television and it was like something you knew. I remember my first computer I did my papers at seminary typing hello Corona typewriter and if you made a mistake to settle over again and yet to measure our footnotes and so on, and the risk of a formula, and sometimes you go right and sometimes you didn't get a Triton young guys like something this congregation know nothing about that at all and the share blessings of a cell phone. I remember stopping a gas station so asking for directions and then getting into the car and saying, did you see second after third left and then you have to get out of another gas station asked the directions once again announced his cell phones.
I know my wife knows exactly where I am at any point of the day because she has fine friends on the phone that's graduation.
This progress many ways.
This progress has its downside to of course. But it's progress you you want to have information about something and you just built into Google search of the dance in seconds. Something meditating days or weeks or months to find out in the past, so this progress. And Paul is using that kind of imagery here about the gospel.
The reason why we don't have to obey these ceremonial boundary markers is because we graduated with come of age.
I have a sliderule at home. Some is not a motorcyclist but have a sliderule at home, but I don't ever want to use it again. I mean I don't ever want to use it again side books of maps of the nano want to use them again because I have a GPS so much better and Paul Osuna talk about the age of the spirits. Note some of the most beautiful language of the gospel emerges here and he says here in verse four when the fullness of the time it comes, God sent forth his son is the one who was sent born of a woman while the sportster I mean it's kind of the greenhouse would be reborn.
Paul, some people think that because he sang born of a woman you might be referring to the usual way in which he was born of woman and that this might be the only reference of Paul to the virgin birth. Paul never mentions the virgin birth, but this might be a reference to the version but I don't think so. I think he's saluting to Genesis 315 the seed of the woman. He is the seed of the woman that seed that was promised to Abraham. He is the seed of the woman born of woman born under the law, to redeem those who are under the law's condition is that that's our condition as individuals, by nature, but it was also the condition of the Jews under the old covenant. They were under the law on this.
A sense in which Jesus came to redeem them from the consequences of that law.
In some refused and somewhat heartened in some like Saul of Tarsus and John Jameson and Pete turned Andrew and Thomas and others believed to redeem those who were under the law so that we might receive adoption as sons and their in Galatians and Galatians is another letter but then Galatians you reach the Himalayas to reach the high points. What is the chiefest blasting of the gospel and it's not justification by faith.
That's only the beginning that she blasting of the gospel is adoption.
The rear children that God is our heavenly father that Jesus is our elder brother that we are brothers and sisters in a great family and that we are inheritance and because you are sons, God sent forth the spirits of his son into our hearts, crying, Abba father, the same Holy Spirit who upheld Jesus and assured him of his son ship is the same spirit who indwells us and assures us of our adoption.
Now I know that it's PC to say sons and daughters which understand that makes absolutely no sense in the first century because doctors did not inherit it would limit any sense for Paul to say sons and daughters as only sons inherited and the point that he wants to make is that we are inheritance we are going to inherit the new heavens and new earth we inherit a new name we inherited new status.
We inherit new privileges, we inherited new future, you are no longer slaves but a son, if you obey food laws out of conviction that you are supposed to obey food loss value may have a preference not to eat shellfish and that's your choice, but if you obey it as a matter of conscience you've gone back to being a slave.
You are no better than the safe and thus of who you are in Christ.
You are a child and the child of the King with Jesus my Savior and the child of the King. You are no longer disabled her son and her son, then an heir to God. You are an inheritor. There is coming a day when that inheritance will be given to in all its fullness is given to them promise now. But one day it will be given to you and all of its fullness in all of its glory. When you walk those blessed streets of the new Jerusalem and you see the wonders of the new heavens and new earth which God has prepared for those that love him. So this is a high watermark in Galatians the doctrine of adoption that we are children of God, but God is our heavenly father. Jesus is our elder brother that the Holy Spirit the same Holy Spirit who indwells Jesus indwells us and who knows Jesus better than the Holy Spirit's. He is Jesus's best friend and his representative agent in our hearts, witnessing with our spirits. We are children of God.
Well, this morning because now he's opened up a whole new world and to wants to address some possible issues. Soon Galicia because they haven't seen the truth of what it really means.
This, that is a high watermark.
Indeed, all this week on Renewing Your Mind, Dr. Derek Thomas is reminding us of the apostle Paul's bold defense of the gospel that we are justified by God's grace alone through faith alone because of Christ alone. All for the glory of God alone and is weird today were adopted were part of God's family, and nothing can change that. The lessons were hearing this week come from Dr. Thomas's series on Paul's letter to the churches in Galatia.
We brought you to request this 14 part series is titled no other gospel will send it to you for a donation of any about the litigator ministries you can reach us by phone at 800-435-4343. You can also find us online at Renewing Your Mind daughter work, you may want to share this series with your friends and family and easy way to do that is to follow us on Facebook you can listen to the program there and easily share individual messages with your network of friends. Once you're on Facebook to search for at our YM radio. But as we been hearing in the series by Dr. Thomas. The churches in Galatia were being confused by false teachers. The fullness of times come in, God sent forth his son, born of a woman, made under the law, to redeem those who are under the law to bring them out of that bondage. So now they're going back into that bondage again. Legalism affects the issue in the church in Galatia.
What is legalism and why is it so costly will find out tomorrow. We hope you'll join us for Renewing Your Mind