Sep 21, 2020
O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you? It was before your eyes that Jesus Christ was publicly portrayed as crucified. 2 Let me ask you only this: Did you receive the Spirit by works of the law or by hearing with faith? 3 Are you so foolish? Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the flesh? 4 Did you suffer so many things in vain—if indeed it was in vain? 5 Does He who supplies the Spirit to you and works miracles among you do so by works of the law, or by hearing with faith— 6 just as Abraham “believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness”? 7 Know then that it is those of faith who are the sons of Abraham. 8 And the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel beforehand to Abraham, saying, “In you shall all the nations be blessed.” 9 So then, those who are of faith are blessed along with Abraham, the man of faith. 10 For all who rely on works of the law are under a curse; for it is written, “Cursed be everyone who does not abide by all things written in the Book of the Law, and do them.” 11 Now it is evident that no one is justified before God by the law, for “The righteous shall live by faith.” 12 But the law is not of faith, rather “The one who does them shall live by them.” 13 Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us—for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who is hanged on a tree”— 14 so that in Christ Jesus the blessing of Abraham might come to the Gentiles, so that we might receive the promised Spirit through faith.
It is a strange moment preaching for my last time at Parish Presbyterian Church. The nine years that my family and I have been able to walk with this church have been precious to us. I will be forever grateful to Parish for graciously listening to me as a young preacher and patiently dealing with me as a young pastor. My family will be forever thankful as we think about the ways you have cared for us during difficult times both here in the States and in Edinburgh. We will continue to be overwhelmed over the celebrations that ensued as we brought Calvin and then Grace home. Most of all, however, we remain humbled that the Lord has given us the opportunity to learn the Gospel with you. I would not have chosen Galatians 3:1-14 as my final passage to preach at Parish, but honestly, it is appropriate. It is in this passage that Paul once again reminds the Galatians of the Gospel that has so clearly been taught to them and admonishes them once more to hold fast to it. It is this that I declare to you this day. Hold fast to the Gospel of grace. I will leave you with the words that Paul spoke to the Ephesian elders in Acts 20: ‘And now I commend you to God and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up and to give you the inheritance among all those who are sanctified.’ —Cameron Clausing Key Words: Crucified, Faith, Righteousness, Cursed Keystone Verse: Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us—for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who is hanged on a tree.” (Galatians 3:13)