Participants: Mark Howard & Jim Howard
Series Code: GBOTB
Program Code: GBOTB00001B
00:08 Welcome back to our study in the book of Galatians.
00:10 We are going to dive right back were we left off.
00:13 We were talking about the grace and peace that is given
00:16 to each one of us through God the Father and
00:18 our Lord Jesus Christ.
00:20 The apostle Paul, in Galatians 1:3 discusses this grace
00:25 and peace in a very brief way, just offering it.
00:29 I believe in what we need to spend a little more time
00:32 doing, where we were last time before the break, was
00:35 talking about these in a more flushed out way.
00:38 Right because this is Paul's standard salutation of
00:40 grace and peace and we can almost take it as a greeting
00:43 like Heh, how are you doing?
00:44 Instead of really grasping that he is expressing some
00:49 core gospel truth right here.
00:50 That's right. We talked about the grace of God being
00:53 the unmerited favor of God and at the same time that power
00:56 by which we are made alive and born-again through that
01:00 grace and it leaves the impression since none of us
01:04 deserve grace of God, and since none of us could merit
01:08 salvation then wouldn't everybody be saved?
01:12 Because God loves everyone an important verses that we
01:16 didn't look to in Ephesians 2: 8, 9 where it simply says
01:20 "that by grace we are saved through faith. "
01:24 So that brings in the choice of the human element.
01:27 In other words, the grace of God is offered to us freely.
01:31 The salvation of God is given to us freely, but our belief
01:35 in those promises, our belief in that grace of God to
01:38 change our hearts and lives is that faith by which we lay
01:41 hold of the grace of God.
01:43 So when we think about it in those terms we can then
01:48 reference Romans 5:1, where it says that having been
01:53 justified by faith, that faith by which we lay claim to
01:57 the grace of God, we have peace with God through
02:01 our Lord Jesus Christ.
02:02 Through that grace that is bringing us into harmony with
02:07 God no longer is our stubborn will preventing us from
02:11 having harmony with God, or peace with God.
02:13 That's right and we really need to flush that out
02:15 a little bit because the idea of peace with God has been
02:20 perverted into this concept that God is against me.
02:26 Because Jesus died for me, now God has found a way to
02:31 love me because of something Jesus did, because of
02:36 something I did as if God changes.
02:39 So the peace with God is something that happens because
02:42 God finally stops fighting, of course you know the
02:45 opposite of peace is war.
02:46 We were talking about a condition of peace, somebody
02:50 stops fighting and we would assume often times that it
02:53 must be God that has stopped fighting.
02:56 The reality is that when the gospel message comes out in
03:00 the salutation of Paul, "grace and peace from God the
03:04 "Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. "
03:06 What's happening is that the peace treaty is being
03:10 proclaimed from God's end, in essence God is saying,
03:14 I'm not holding anything against you, it makes
03:16 me think of the song of the
03:19 Angels when Jesus is born and the shepherds out
03:22 in the field in Luke chapter 2 where angels say,
03:25 "glory to God in the highest end on earth peace,
03:29 "goodwill toward men. "
03:30 In other words God is saying, I'm not fighting you,
03:33 but you have been fighting Me.
03:36 God invites us to lay down our weapons of warfare
03:40 and that is what Paul is talking about there Romans 5.
03:44 When we choose to lay down our weapons of warfare,
03:47 we receive justification by faith and have peace with God.
03:51 That's right, so we can surrender our will and lay
03:55 down our warfare, Jesus says my peace I give unto you.
04:00 So He is not wanting to fight with us, He's wanting us to
04:04 surrender our weapons so that we can be at peace with Him.
04:08 You know what I think about the idea of fighting God,
04:12 it brings me back to the apostle Paul.
04:14 If anybody knew what it was like to wrestle against the
04:19 grace and peace of God it was Paul himself before his
04:24 conversion and we can look at that briefly.
04:28 In Acts 9 we see a little picture of the apostle Paul's
04:34 warfare against God.
04:36 In Acts chapter 9 we see where Jesus meets Paul on the
04:41 road to Damascus and He says, "I am Jesus whom you are
04:46 "persecuting," I'm reading in Chapter 9:5, "it is hard for
04:51 "you to kick against the goads. "
04:53 Now a goad was a pointed instrument used to prod on an
04:57 animal. - right and if an animal didn't want to go forward
05:01 and was aware it was being prodded it would kick back
05:03 at the goad trying to get away from prodding him forward.
05:06 So apparently something was prodding Paul forward.
05:09 The Lord Jesus was saying, hey I'm prodding you forward
05:12 but you are fighting Me.
05:13 You are fighting against Me and so we have this picture
05:17 being painted, now how did that happen
05:18 or when did it happen?
05:19 I think one of the most powerful places were I am just
05:22 sure the Holy Spirit was prodding the conscience of the
05:25 apostle Paul was in Acts chapter 7 just before that.
05:30 In Acts chapter 7 Paul, is there called Saul before his
05:35 conversion, was standing by while the first Christian
05:40 martyr here, Stephen a great deacon, was giving an account
05:45 of the history of Israel and the experience of Israel and
05:51 what they had done to oppose the will of God.
05:53 How they had resisted the Holy Spirit and the leaders
05:58 got so upset that they stoned Stephen.
06:02 Now in the middle of this stoning something amazing
06:04 happens, Stephen looks up and sees Jesus.
06:10 He makes this appeal, or this plea or prayer if you will.
06:17 He says Lord charged not this sin against them.
06:20 Now can you imagine being the apostle Paul and you are
06:24 ordering this stoning and you look in the one that should
06:27 be angry with you, should be hateful toward you and saying,
06:31 "Lord do not charge this sin against them?"
06:34 I'm telling you his conscience had to have been pricked.
06:38 Instead of surrendering his heart, he fought all the
06:42 harder because right after that in Chapter 8 this great
06:45 persecution arose because the apostle Paul began to more
06:49 vehemently go after the Christians than ever before.
06:52 That's right, so obviously he's kicking against the goads
06:56 and it's obvious.
06:57 What's fascinating in the context of this is that we
07:02 mention the controversy over the book of Galatians today,
07:04 where there are Christians who sincerely believe
07:08 that the gospel is saying the law doesn't matter
07:11 to Christians anymore.
07:12 Only what we find Paul fighting against the gospel of
07:16 Stephen that Paul was fighting against in Stephen's
07:21 address in Acts 7:53 he arraigns those Jewish leaders
07:25 and says to them, you receive the law through the
07:29 direction of angels and you have not kept it.
07:32 So Stephen's gospel arraigned them for lawbreaking and Paul
07:37 got incensed and infuriated when it was pointed out that he
07:41 was not obeying the law of God, prior to his conversion.
07:45 So far doing away with the law of God, he was convicted of the
07:50 fact that he wasn't keeping the law of God
07:51 through Stephen's testimony.
07:53 Hmmm, that is exactly right.
07:55 In fact it was last thing that was said before they said
07:59 that's it, and they decided to stone him.
08:02 We could take no more, he challenged them and looked
08:05 right at them and said, you receive the law by the
08:07 direction of angels and have not kept it.
08:09 That was too much for them to handle and I think when
08:13 you look at this idea of the apostle Paul fighting this
08:17 conviction, you understand that Paul knew what it was like
08:21 to have a will that was stubborn.
08:24 To have what the Bible calls the flesh, a carnal nature
08:28 that resisted the will of God.
08:30 It didn't want to humble itself, it didn't want to admit
08:34 that it was wrong and so that hard heart was seen in the
08:37 apostle Paul, that is why the Lord Jesus said, it is hard
08:40 for you to kick against the goads.
08:42 But what the apostle brings out later in Galatians
08:45 Chapter 1, is a powerful couple of statements.
08:48 I would like to read these in Galatians 1:23.
08:51 "But they were hearing only," the Christian churches,
08:57 "he who formerly persecuted us now preaches the faith he
09:02 "once tried to destroy. And they glorify God in me. "
09:07 No wonder they glorify God because here was enemy number
09:11 one of the Christian Church.
09:13 He was the one that they fear, the one that
09:16 they knew was after them.
09:17 He was well know as the one that was opposed to Christians
09:21 and now not only does he become a believer, but he turns
09:26 from enemy number one to evangelist number one.
09:29 If anybody understood the power of a changed life,
09:33 the power of the Gospel, it was the apostle Paul.
09:38 Absolutely, and so when we go back this is how he is
09:42 presenting Grace and peace and then he talks about how
09:46 the Lord Jesus gave Himself for our sins that He might
09:50 deliver us, and that is what he is talking
09:52 about this deliverance.
09:53 I want to touch on this giving,
09:56 Jesus giving Himself for our sins where the Grace of God
10:00 is magnified, there is a transaction taking place here.
10:04 You are giving one thing for another thing.
10:06 It's like when you go to the store and you give money and
10:08 you get back a certain product.
10:10 From a healing perspective, if you go out and pay a
10:14 substantial amount of money, pay $100 for something.
10:18 If you get that thing home and it ends up being a piece of
10:21 junk, whatever it is, you are going to find a use for it.
10:24 You are not just going to throw it away, it costs you
10:26 $100, use it as a paperweight or something.
10:29 A coaster - a coaster or whatever because you paid
10:35 that money for it.
10:36 Here is a transaction that is made where God has paid a
10:40 price that is an infinite price, the greatest price that
10:43 has never been paid and He knew what He was getting.
10:46 And once more it doesn't say He gave Himself for us,
10:49 it says He gave Himself for our sins.
10:52 So He gave Himself for we are often times tempted to
10:56 say, I hear that God loves me but could He accept
10:59 me because of my sins?
11:01 Your sins are what He bought. - and that is right.
11:03 Somebody once said that if you go to the store and
11:06 give money for something and they don't give you
11:09 what you paid for, you will call them a crook
11:12 or something else. - right, right.
11:15 Jesus paid for our sins,
11:17 why don't we give them to Him?
11:19 We need to surrender that which He paid for and to think we
11:24 aren't worthy enough to give Him that is to
11:28 ignore the fact that He knew what He was getting
11:31 when He bought us.
11:32 Right, that is what Grace is all about.
11:33 So when we look at the apostle Paul's statement here
11:35 "Grace to you and peace from God the Father,
11:38 "and the Lord Jesus Christ. "
11:41 The apostle Paul is making a point that God is
11:45 offering to us, in spite of the fact that we are sinful.
11:50 In the full light of the fact that we are sinful,
11:54 He is offering grace and peace to us.
11:57 How does it come to us?
11:58 Through the Lord Jesus Christ who gave Himself for our
12:02 sins, the reason that we can fully accept this gospel
12:05 is because the Lord Jesus has made a trade.
12:08 He has taken those sins and He is more than willing
12:11 to take those sins when we give ourselves to Him.
12:15 But it goes on and it says, "that He might deliver us
12:19 "from the present evil. " This present evil.
12:22 I believe that this last portion here is really
12:26 hitting on the issue that was existing here in
12:29 the Galatian church.
12:30 There are many people who believe that, that gospel was
12:34 so that we could continue in evil.
12:36 Jesus died so we don't have to keep the law.
12:39 The apostle Paul, right here in his salutation is
12:42 opposing that very thought by saying, no the Gospel
12:46 is so that you can be rescued from your life of sin.
12:50 The Gospel is so that you can be delivered from
12:53 this present evil age.
12:54 That is right, Amen! So that is what as we open
12:57 up the book of Galatians and dig into, that is
13:01 what we are going to unpack and see that deliverance
13:03 from many different angles here.
13:04 The apostle Paul wants to make it very clear to us
13:07 because he wants us to experience the deliverance
13:09 that he experienced.
13:11 It is a blessed, beautiful message that we find
13:14 in the book of Galatians and so we are excited as we
13:17 continue on through this series.
13:18 We hope you will continue to join us.
13:20 Thanks for being with us today and I hope
13:21 you will tune in next time. - Amen!