Call To Die

Then [Jesus] said to them all, "If anyone wants to come with Me, he must deny himself, take up his cross daily, and follow Me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life because of Me will save it. (Luke 9:23-24, HCSB)

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Follower of Christ, husband of Abby, member of New Georgia Baptist Church.

Monday, March 31, 2008

Justification is By Faith Alone: An Outline of the Apostle Paul's Argument in Galatians 3:1-14

Yesterday at Kosmosdale Baptist Church, I taught through Galatians 3:1-14 in Sunday school. Below is the outline for my exegesis of this passage:

A. The Apostle’s cry of distress (1)

B. Argument for justification by faith and not Law from the Galatians’ experience (2-5)
  1. The Galatians received the Spirit by faith (2-3)
  2. The Galatians endured persecution by faith (4)
  3. The Galatians witnessed miracles by faith (5)
C. Argument for justification by faith and not Law from the text of Scripture (6-12)
  1. Abraham was justified by faith [Note: The Judaizers asserted that one had to come under the covenant of Abraham in order to be justified] (6; Gen. 15:6)
  2. The nations will be blessed through Abraham, but as in the case of Abraham, they will be blessed due to faith (7-9; Gen. 12:3; 18:18)
  3. That we are not brought into Abraham and justified by law is evident, for everyone who does not keep the entire law is cursed [and it is obvious no one does keep the entire law] (10; Deut. 27:26)
  4. Furthermore, Scripture positively declares that justification is by faith, not by law (11; Hab. 2:4)
  5. But it is obvious that working, rather than believing, is the heart of the Law (12; Lev. 18:5)
D. Argument for justification by faith and not Law from the work of Christ
  1. Christ redeemed us from the curse of the Law (13)
  2. Christ Himself becomes the focus of the Abrahamic blessing (14)
One thing I wanted to stress is how this section of the epistle provides a model for how we should reason with people from the Scripture. It is often helpful to start with noting certain personal experiences of those we are addressing. Then, we should turn to specific verses of Scripture that challenge wrong thinking- keeping the overall message of the Bible in view as we reference the specific verses. Finally, we should demonstrate how Scripture points to Christ and how His work on behalf of sinners impacts our understanding of whatever particular issue is under consideration.

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