Inductive Study, Galatians 2
Key Verse: … a person is not justified by observing the law, but by faith in Jesus Christ. So we, too, have put our faith in Christ Jesus that we may be justified by faith in Christ and not by observing the law, because by observing the law no one will be justified. Galatians 2:16
In Galatians 2 Paul defends his interpretation of the gospel. He tells the Galatians with strong language that justification, or right standing with God, can only come through faith in Jesus Christ. He assures the Galatians that justification can not come through Jewish law or by circumcision.
Truly salvation has come, and it is so much more than I could have hoped for! Jesus came to give me right standing with God. His sacrifice on the cross washes me clean and gives me right standing with God- even though I’m a gentile, even though I’m a woman, even though I’m a sinner. All I have to do is believe that faith in Christ is what will save me and I’m instantly saved. I don’t have to be “circumcised,” baptized, or physically cleansed because faith in Christ cleanses me. If righteousness could come through an act that I could perform myself then Christ wouldn’t have needed to come (vs 21).
Although I know this is true there are times I feel as though my faith in Christ isn’t enough. I have been told that I have to be baptized by submersion in water to be saved. I have been told I have to be baptized by the Holy Spirit and speak in tongues in order to be saved. I have been told I’m not really saved if I don’t dress a certain way. I have been told I’m not saved if I don’t attend a particular church. At times I have believed one or more of these things must be true because I trusted the person who told it to me. None of them are true… Paul is clear about what he says to the Galatians, salvation comes through faith in Christ and only through faith in Christ. Any evidence of my salvation which manifests itself in these other things is just that- Evidence of the salvation I received by faith, but these things can’t save me.
Dear Heavenly Father, Thank you for sending your son, Jesus, to earth so that I could receive salvation through Him. Thank you for giving me the faith to believe that His sacrifice saves me. Jesus, thank you for coming to sacrifice yourself for my sins. I am so grateful to be able to receive this salvation through faith. Help me to be a good witness to others. Help me to die to myself so that Christ can fully live within me. Continue to show me how to live and to act according to Your perfect will. In Jesus name I pray, Amen.
Galatians 3: No Plan B