Our passage today is Galatians Chapter 3 verses 15 to 25.
Sometimes the Old Testament is portrayed as a whole lot of rules (law) which we have to obey to please God, and the New Testament is all about love and mercy.Actually although the OT does contain the law there is also much grace, faith and promise in there as well.
Yesterday we were reminded of Abraham’s faith in the promises of God contained in Genesis Chapter 15 where he was credited by God to be righteous, 2 chapters before the instruction about circumcision (the hot topic in the Galatian church) was given by the Lord.Faith comes before works in the OT.
Similarly today, Paul is saying (vs.15-18) that the promises given to Abraham about him and his seed (pointing ultimately to Jesus, the son of Abraham) came about 430 years before the law was given to God’s people through Moses.Promise comes before law in the OT.
So what is the law all about? We need to remind ourselves that it is God-given and therefore not dismiss it straightaway and say it is not important.Paul here says that is not opposed to the promises of God (v.21), it just can’t make us right with Him.Rather it has been given (v.19) because of transgressions, perhaps there to restrain our sin or more likely to show us our sin, and therefore show us also the need for the salvation that the promise of God offers through the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ and faith in Him (v.22).
I find this quite complicated and deep trying to work out all the arguments here, perhaps because as I said right at the beginning of the week that I feel this letter is less well-known than some of the others the apostle Paul has written. I hope you are finding some of this stuff helpful.
From our church address list please remember in your prayers today,
– Nova- Shirley and family.