Crosses             LBG                  HateLove

Devotional - week of December 30, 2012


BEGINNING AGAIN 

My little children, for whom I labor in birth again until Christ is formed in you …. Galatians 4:19

On the first missionary journey, Paul and Barnabas went into the province of Galatia which was a part of what is now Turkey. God drew many to salvation. Churches were started.  

Paul and Barnabas began to teach the new converts how to live the Christian life immediately. They taught them the life of grace. After Paul and Barnabas left Galatia, false teachers came into the area and told the new converts that Paul and Barnabas were wrong. They said that that one must keep the law in order to be saved and to live the Christian life.

When Paul heard of this, he describes his grief as a mother giving birth to a child. He knew by experience how living by law will never result in spiritual growth. He wrote to those believers what is now known as the Book of Galatians.

In his letter, he explained the spiritual danger of following the false teachers. He made it clear that the only way to live successfully the Christian life is through grace and not through law. He appealed to them to return to the life of grace.

What happened in Galatia was not unlike what sometimes happens in our day. A person enters into the joy of freedom from law and self effort to live by grace and then for some reason backs away from it.

This can be because of the influence of someone who does not understand the message. It could be the influence of Satan who hates the life of grace. It could be falling back into the error of living out of self effort and wisdom.

As many are thinking at the end of the year that they will do better next year, if you have gotten away from the life of grace, come back and experience fulfillment and joy again.