Foolishness of being doubtful
You foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you? Before your very eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed as crucified (Gal. 3:1)
Initially when Paul preached to the Galatians, they received the Gospel with much enthusiasm. These believers doubt the salvation of Jesus Christ and they are trying to add to the salvation by human effort. The enemy has sown the seeds of doubt into their hearts and the church is placing their efforts on the traditions, law, and flesh. Paul is reminding us that the doubt is not from the Spirit, rather it’s from flesh. Let’s look at why they became foolish. How is the church bewitched?
Contradicting the Salvific Act of Christ on the Cross: The death of Christ for our sin shows how hopelessly lost we are, and how we can't make any contribution to our salvation. We can't do anything to enhance our justification. Therefore, when we follow the empty form of religion and erect the law or other religious standards as a ladder to heaven on which we try to demonstrate our contribution of will or effort, we nullify the grace of God.
Contradicting the Work of the Spirit: The moment we accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior and surrender our lives to His Lordship the Holy Spirit takes residence in our heart. The Holy Spirit enables us to live the very life that Christ has called us to live and gives us the understanding of the Word of God, reveals the truth, convicts us of sin, gives us faith, equips and empowers us to do the very things that God wants us to do. This state is marked by a genuine devotion for the love of God evidenced by the fruit of the Holy Spirit (Gal. 5:22). Remember, we can’t produce the fruit; we are only fruit bearers. The fruit of the Spirit is not an option for a believer, but it is the necessary evidence that a person is truly a believer.
Now another question arises: Do Christians have to follow the law? Answer to this question is found in Hebrews 8:10 - “I will put my laws in their minds and write them on their hearts. I will be their God and they will be my people.” This means that God’s laws will become inner principles of the true believer who is indwelled by the Holy Spirit that enables a person to delight in doing God’s will. If we doubt the Word and the presence of the Holy Spirit within us, we are bewitched and foolish and going back to the flesh.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, I thank you for saving me, a sinner by your love for me. Fill me with your Spirit and help me to abide in you. Preserve me, O Lord in your grace. Amen.
Thought for the day: Surrender to the Lordship of Christ and be blessed!
Thomas Philip, Christos MTC, Philadelphia