Video Sermon – Galatians 4:1-11

Galatians 4:1-11

Three Important Truths are Seen in Chapter 3.

  1. We are the Children of God.
  2. We are heirs of God.
  3. We should not trade our Sonship for slavery.

Slaves to Sons (Vs. 1-7)

  • Paul often speaks to Gentile Christians who sometimes were made to feel inferior to the Jewish Christians because of heritage.  The Judaizers made the gentile Christians feel this way.
  • So Paul uses analogy to teach – the adoption of sons.
    • Vs. 1 – The Heir and Servant/Slave, were no different in standing in Romans culture.  It didn’t matter if you lived under the law or no law, you were the same in sin.
      • Comparison of Mosaic Law & Stoiecha (wind, water, fire, earth) linked to pagan gods.
    • A son was put under an epitropos or oikonomos, (pedagogues in 3:24), until anytime between the ages of 14 and 25, till they went through an adoption ceremony.  
    • Their childhood clothing was traded for an adult tunic.
  • The Jews may be sons, but they are under the law and sin has corrupted the purpose.  Gentiles may be outright slaves to sin.  There is no difference.  All have sinned and come short of the glory of God.  None are recognized as the true children of the heavenly Father.
    • Except – those who have come to Jesus.
      • Jesus the Son of God, came and redeemed us for the elements of the world.
      • We are redeemed and Adopted, previous slaves of another house, made sons and daughters of God, Joint heirs with Christ.  No longer a servant.  No longer a slave.  No longer an orphan and outcast.
        • Romans 8:14-17
          • 14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.15 For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.  16 The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:  17 And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.
        • 1 John 3:1
          • Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not.

Don’t Return to the Former Things

  • A debate that is often raging, can we “lose” our salvation?
    • One tradition says “No” and another tradition says “Yes.”
      • The tradition that believes in “Eternal Security”:
        • Says salvation is initiated and solely dependent on God doing everything, despite our continually sinning and rebellion.
          • One is always sinning so God has to make on eternally secure.
          • One who “backslides” was never saved in the first place.
      • The tradition that believes it is possible to “forfeit salvation”:
        • Says salvation is initiated by God and is kept by cooperation with God, even though our part is much smaller than God’s.
          • Salvation isn’t brittle.
          • Perhaps the better phrase, though one Wesley himself did not use, would be one that starts where Calvin starts-not with us (as once saved, always saved often seems to do), but with God. “God is out to save us, one and all.” Though we have no faith we can articulate, God is out to save us, one and all. Though our faith may grow dim and our works disorderly, God is out to save us, one and all. Though we may lose our way and do terrible things to others, God is out to save us, one and all. And though for some God’s efforts to save may still leave them in spiritual death and Hell, God is out to save us, one and all.
          • Once saved, always saved? No. But always, always called to the fullness of God’s salvation. And always, always loved.
        • John Wesley
          • Do you know, have you seen, any instance of persons who found redemption in the blood of Jesus, and afterwards fell away, and yet were restored, — ‘renewed again to repentance?’ ” Yea, verily; and not one, or an hundred only, but, I am persuaded, several thousands. In every place where the arm of the Lord has been revealed, and many sinners converted to God, there are several found who “turn back from the holy commandment delivered to them.” For a great part of these “it had been better never to have known the way of righteousness.” It only increases their damnation, seeing they die in their sins. But others there are who “look unto him they have pierced, and mourn,” refusing to be comforted. And, sooner or later, he surely lifts up the light of his countenance upon them; he strengthens the hands that hang down, and confirms the feeble knees; he teaches them again to say, “My soul doth magnify the Lord, and my spirit rejoiceth in God my Saviour.” Innumerable are the instances of this kind, of those who had fallen, but now stand upright. Indeed, it is so far from being an uncommon thing for a believer to fall and be restored, that it is rather uncommon to find any believers who are not conscious of having been backsliders from God, in a higher or lower degree, and perhaps more than once, before they were established in faith.
  • This is the position of the Scripture here?
    • You were in bondage of sin.  
    • Then you knew God – a personal relationship with God.
    • Now you want to return to bondage in sin under a different activity?
      • This is a clear picture of forfeiting salvation and making it vain (empty).

If you have backslidden:

  • Trust the Father loves you and is doing things for you still to bring you back (Paul to Galatia).
  • Renew your love for the Father
    • Turn from the wickedness you have picked up.
    • Confess Christ as your Lord.
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