Jul 16, 2017

Devotion - 16 July - The Law and the Promise

A brief prayer is offered that you can add to your daily prayers this week. The scripture is from our Sunday Service Bulletin. We continue a multi-sermon series on Galatians that will run through the summer.
Epistle Reading- Galatians 3:15-25
15 To give a human example, brothers:[a] even with a man-made covenant, no one annuls it or adds to it once it has been ratified. 16 Now the promises were made to Abraham and to his offspring. It does not say, “And to offsprings,” referring to many, but referring to one, “And to your offspring,” who is Christ. 17 This is what I mean: the law, which came 430 years afterward, does not annul a covenant previously ratified by God, so as to make the promise void. 18 For if the inheritance comes by the law, it no longer comes by promise; but God gave it to Abraham by a promise.
19 Why then the law? It was added because of transgressions, until the offspring should come to whom the promise had been made, and it was put in place through angels by an intermediary. 20 Now an intermediary implies more than one, but God is one.
21 Is the law then contrary to the promises of God? Certainly not! For if a law had been given that could give life, then righteousness would indeed be by the law. 22 But the Scripture imprisoned everything under sin, so that the promise by faith in Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe.
23 Now before faith came, we were held captive under the law, imprisoned until the coming faith would be revealed. 24 So then, the law was our guardian until Christ came, in order that we might be justified by faith. 25 But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian,
Devotion: The Law and the Promise
Paul continues his argument that God justifies Christians by faith alone showing the logical fallacy of relying on the Law alone. He bases his argument on the biblical revelation to Abraham. We can briefly summarize today’s text by making three points: 1- the offspring of Abraham is singular, referring to the Christ [meaning Jesus continues to fulfill the covenant], 2-God promised salvation no matter what we do [as part of the covenant] and 3- we need both the Law [a “guardian” and measuring stick] and the Gospel. That is, we can never be perfect enough to obey the Law so we need redemption [for falling short of the Law] through faith in Him. Paul has packed the entire life saving message of Our Lord and Savior into a few sentences of a letter -- we are told that Dr Martin Luther enjoyed reading Galatians often. I hope you enjoy Paul’s beautiful piece of writing and that you can take comfort in God’s promise.

We pray: “Lord thank You for this promise--help me grow my faith in You. Amen”