Daily Devotional Friday 16th October

by William Moody

Galatians 2:15–21

Justified by Faith

15 We ourselves are Jews by birth and not Gentile sinners; 16 yet we know that a person is not justified1 by works of the law but through faith in Jesus Christ, so we also have believed in Christ Jesus, in order to be justified by faith in Christ and not by works of the law, because by works of the law no one will be justified.

17 But if, in our endeavor to be justified in Christ, we too were found to be sinners, is Christ then a servant of sin? Certainly not! 18 For if I rebuild what I tore down, I prove myself to be a transgressor. 19 For through the law I died to the law, so that I might live to God. 20 I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. 21 I do not nullify the grace of God, for if righteousness2 were through the law, then Christ died for no purpose.

Footnotes

[1] 2:16 Or counted righteous (three times in verse 16); also verse 17
[2] 2:21 Or justification

(ESV)

In dealing with the problem within these churches Paul restates the Gospel and gets these believers back to basics. People are justified, made right with God, through faith in Jesus alone and not by keeping the law (v16).

It is making clear what the Gospel is and that keeping the law is not part of being saved that Paul seeks to show that any insistence on keeping the law for salvation is wrong.

Paul teaches that the law doesn’t make you right with God, but rather it makes people conscience of their sin which should cause them to see that they have no hope in getting right with God through the law (v17-19).

The law doesn’t deal with sin but only the cross of Christ can do this (v20). The power of the cross deals with the sinful nature and brings the believer into a new life of faith.

Paul argues that those who add the law to the Gospel are doing a terrible thing in belittling the Gospel and what Christ has done (v21). Only the gospel of salvation by grace alone, through Christ alone and received through faith alone can bring to Christ the glory that He truly deserves.

Scripture quotations are from the ESV® Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®),
copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.
Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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