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Galatians Bible Study – Week 2 – Part 2 – Chapters 3-4

Note: If you are looking for any posts you have missed, or a FREE copy of the study guide, you can find the table of contents by clicking here.

Below are my thoughts for each of the chapters we studied this week along with the answers to the questions I posted in the study guide.

Also, make sure that you get a copy of the coloring page I have pasted below. Have a great weekend!

Galatians 3

Questions and Answers…

Explain Paul’s use of the word ‘foolish’ in regards to the Galatian church.

The word anoétos (Strong’s 453) means unwise or not mindful. Instead of being wise and stable and strong, they were easily swayed to believe another doctrine.

They were saved by grace through faith in Jesus Christ, but were drawn into the belief that the works of the law would justify them.

If we want to stay grounded in faith, it’s important for us to know the will of God by reading His word and gaining a deeper understanding of it. It’s also important to question new ideas and dig deep into scripture to ensure that we’re standing on truth.

How does the example of Abraham apply to Salvation? (See Genesis 15:6, 22:18, and 28:14)

Genesis 15:6 says of Abraham, “And he believed in the Lord; and he counted it to him for righteousness.”

In Genesis 17 the Lord appeared to Abraham at the age of 90 years old. He made a covenant with Abraham that through him all of the world would be blessed. God then tells Abraham to circumcise every man and boy in his family. Not that circumcision would count for righteousness, but that circumcision would be a token of the covenant between them.

And ye shall circumcise the flesh of your foreskin; and it shall be a token of the covenant betwixt me and you. (Genesis 17:11)

And so we see that Abraham was justified apart from the law. In fact, the Mosaic law wasn’t given until Exodus chapter 19, which was hundreds of years after Abraham was given the promise.

In much the same way, many people think that going to church, giving tithes, abstaining from sin, or reading the Bible will save them. While all of those things are an important part of serving God, they are an extension of our faith. The root of our faith however is faith in Jesus Christ. For it’s only by Him and through Him that we are counted as righteous.

When did the law become a ‘curse’ to man? (See Deuteronomy 27:26)

This verse sums up the entire law, condemning all who fail to keep the perfection of the law. The law was a teacher that served to show mankind how sinful we are. If we strive to keep the law, yet fail in one area, we have essentially failed the law. Any sin, regardless of how big or how small it might seem, separates us from God. The Bible tells us that “There is none righteous, no, not one” (Romans 3:10). It’s because of this separation, that Jesus came to take away the sin of the world, and bridge the gap between God and man.

Why does the law never save? (Habakkuk 2:4 and Leviticus 18:5)

While the law served to show us our sin, it didn’t have the power to remove the punishment of sin. The law put a label on our sin. It proved how sinful man was and how weak we are through the flesh, which is why the scriptures say, “For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh.” – Romans 8:3

It was impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins. We needed a sacrifice that was perfect in every way–a sacrifice that only God Himself could satisfy.

Who has released us from the ‘curse’ of the law? (Deuteronomy 21:23)

It’s amazing how Deuteronomy, the fifth book in the Bible prophesied of the coming Redeemer, and how details were already in place thousands of years before He went to the cross.

“His body shall not remain all night upon the tree, but thou shalt in any wise bury him that day; (for he that is hanged is accursed of God;) that thy land be not defiled, which the LORD thy God giveth thee for an inheritance.” – Deuteronomy 21:23

Explain who the ‘sons of Abraham are, according to Paul. How does this apply today?

Those who have faith in God and His son Jesus Christ are sons of Abraham. We as Gentiles have had the privilege of being grafted into the tree of Israel alongside our Jewish ancestors.

“That the Gentiles should be fellowheirs, and of the same body, and partakers of his promise in Christ by the gospel.” – Ephesians 3:6

Define the REAL purpose of the Law.

Paul answers his question by saying, “It was added because of transgressions, till the seed should come to whom the promise was made; and it was ordained by angels in the hand of a mediator.”

When Paul says it was added, he doesn’t mean that it was an afterthought, but rather it was a temporary addition to God’s plan of salvation. It was instituted hundreds of years after the promise was given to Abraham, and was fulfilled by the death and resurrection of Christ.

“Because of transgressions” defines the heart of the law, as it pointed the sinner to Christ. Every transgression of the law required a sacrifice. Every sacrifice, every offering, and every drop of blood that was shed pointed to the coming Messiah who would take away the sins of the world.

“Paul does not mean that the law was given by angels rather than by God. He is merely pointing to the well-known Jewish tradition that God gave the law through the agency of angels as well as by a mediator, namely Moses.” (IVP New Testament Commentary)

In what way are we to ‘put on Christ’?

To “put on Christ” is to take on the nature of God, as opposed to the nature of man. Baptism is a symbol of a spiritual death, in which we die to our old man and rise to a new life in Christ. In the way that a glove conforms to one’s hand, we conform our lives to the nature of Christ.

Explain verses 28 and 29, as it applies to the church today.

We know that physically we are still male and female, Jew and Gentile, but as we see in these verses we are one in the Spirit. Because of Abraham’s faith, he was justified, and we too are justified by faith in Jesus Christ.

 

Galatians 4

Please note: The video for this chapter wasn’t available at the time I posted this. Subscribe to my youtube channel where you can find all of my videos as they are posted, or follow my facebook page to keep up with my updates, or both. I should have the video up by Friday night.

Questions and Answers…

Why did Paul use the analogy of the child/heir and slave in verses 1-2, and what does this represent?

He uses this analogy to illustrate a few things. One is that we are children of God through faith, and as children of God we are heirs to the promise made to Abraham, that through his seed all of the world would be blessed. Paul talks about a guardian here and how we were like children under the care of a guardian. The guardian was the law, which we are no longer under. When we were adopted as sons of God, we were freed from the bondage of the law.

Define adoption according to verse 5.

The Greek word for “adoption as sons” found in verse 5 is “huiothesia.” According to the NIV footnotes, this is s a legal term referring to the full legal standing of an adopted male heir in Roman culture.

What happens as a result of our ‘adoption’ in Christ?

We receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. We are also free from the law through the righteousness of Christ. And we are children of God.

What was Paul so concerned over for the Galatian church according to verses 10-11? Compare with verses 19-20.

Because they were returning to the law, they were minimalizing the righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ. Faith is the only thing that makes us righteous from the condemnation of the law. If you don’t have the righteousness of Christ, then you are under the law, and every curse written in the law is against you.

The law points to our sin. It puts a label on our sin, and proves that we are guilty of sin, but it does not by any means make one righteous or pardon our transgressions.

The feasts and the Holy Days pointed to the coming Messiah. They revealed the righteousness of Christ and His work on the cross.
The disciples in the New Testament continued to celebrate these feasts. In fact, we see in Acts 18:21, Paul says, “I must by all means keep this feast [probably Passover] that cometh in Jerusalem: but I will return again unto you.”

The day after Passover was the first day of unleavened bread which was one of three Pilgrimage feasts. Jews from all over, would travel to Jerusalem to celebrate the feast.

Believers would be celebrating the feasts knowing that Christ had fulfilled them, and so their attitude was different from those who celebrated the feasts believing that it made them righteous.

The problem Paul was addressing here was those who put their faith in the law.

What did Paul mean when he said ‘be as I am’ (v. 12)?

That they would be of one mind and one heart with Paul on these issues.

Explain the two covenants according to verses 21-33.

Abraham had two sons, Ishmael and Isaac. One was born through the miraculous promise of God, while the other was born naturally by his concubine.

The bondwoman in this story was Hagaar the concubine, and the free woman was Sarah, Abraham’s wife.

Their boys represented Abraham’s seed. One born of natural descent, while the other was born of the promise.

“And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.” – Galatians 3:29

Those born of natural descent, put their faith in the law, and therefore are under the condemnation of the law.

Those born of the promise (including both physical Jews and Gentiles) put their faith in Jesus Christ, and are free from the condemnation of the law.

There is therefore now no condemnation to them who are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. – Romans 8:1

Who was Paul referring to with the ‘son of the bondwoman,’ as compared to the ‘son of the freewoman,’ in this chapter? What did the two represent?

The son of the bondwoman was Ishmael. He represented those born of natural descent who put their faith in the law.

The son of the freewoman was born of the promise. They represent those (both Jews and Gentiles) born through faith Jesus Christ.

Which are we now as Christians?

We are children of the promise.

 

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You are loved by an almighty God,

Darlene Schacht
The Time-Warp Wife

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