A slave who is set free, but comes back to serve his master is not a slave–especially when his master adopts him!
2 A prudent servant will rule over a disgraceful son
and will share the inheritance as one of the family.
Knowing that we are to trust Jesus with our lives and to interact with Him on everything, we are now in the right frame of mind to consider portions of Galatians 5. The first passage concerns old religion and old habits,
5 The Messiah set us free so that we could enjoy freedom! So stand firm, and don’t get yourselves tied down by the chains of slavery.
2 Look here: I, Paul, am telling you that if you get circumcised, the Messiah will be of no use to you. 3 I testify once more, against every person who gets circumcised, that he is thereby under obligation to perform the entire law. 4 You are split off from the Messiah, you people who want to be justified by the law! You have dropped out of grace. 5 For we are waiting eagerly, by the spirit and by faith, for the hope of righteousness. 6 For in the Messiah, Jesus, neither circumcision nor uncircumcision has any power. What matters is faith, working through love.
It was never about what we do so much as it was why we do what we do. Our response/reaction to any given situation is based upon what we believe about God and about ourselves. For instance, I saw a bumper sticker yesterday that said, “No Lives Matter.” Based upon this declaration, I cannot trust that person to come to my aid in case of an accident, to not rob me if given the chance, or to not harm me out of mutual human respect. People who believe that Jesus has set them free from having to do things in order to be right with God, but then try to stay “bless-able” by following a list of rules (usually set by others) have missed the point of freedom in Christ. Our old habits die hard; just ask the Israelites. They got away from the land of Egypt, but Egypt was in their hearts. Only Christ can set us free from that Egypt. Before resorting or reverting to following a set of rules, ask Jesus what He thinks. His opinion is the only one that matters.
Tomorrow, we will look at verses 11-18 and this fight that we have inside us.
Abba, You have set us free from having to do anything to earn Your love. You proved Your love to us by consenting to die at the hands of our religious leaders and then not demanding justice–in fact, You forgave them! Then, to look at Saul (who later was called Paul) and the way You called him without even mentioning his sin other than to ask him why he was fighting You so hard makes me rethink just how far Your forgiveness goes. When I read their testimonies, it gives me hope, “and hope does not disappoint, for You have poured out Your love into our hearts through Your Holy Spirit, whom You have given to us” (Romans 5:5). Thank You, Abba. Thank You, Jesus. Thank You, Holy Spirit. Amen.