Galatians is the Magna Carta of Christian liberty. It’s a powerful little book. We’re studying it this year at Church of the Open Door. In Chapters 5 and 6 Paul applies the messages of justification and sanctification by faith.
In the first section of the epistle proper, 1:11-2:21, Paul defended his apostleship. In 3:1-4:31 the Apostle clarifies the implications of justification and sanctification by faith and why it’s true. His final section (5:1-6:10) demonstrates how this grace works in life. Grace works through liberty. Christ set us free to demonstrate His righteousness in ways that transcend any enslaving set of rules or moral codes (5:1-12). This liberty isn’t so that we can indulge the self-centered desires of our flesh as we did before we trusted in Christ. Using our freedom in that way will cause us to lose our inheritance in the coming kingdom (5:13-21). We’ve been set free to walk in the Spirit (5:16-18) so that we can display Christ’s righteousness through the fruit of the Spirit (5:22-26). But even this transformation isn’t about us; it’s about Christ and others. What we’ve really been set free to do is to love and serve others (6:1-10).
In one of the most important passages on the Christian life in the Bible, Paul explains the grace alternative to the law. By walking in the Spirit, Christians overcome the self-indulgent sins of the flesh and express their faith through love, a love that glorifies God by displaying the character of Christ:
Walk in the Spirit to glorify God in your liberty!
Here’s the link to the sermon, study notes, and discussion notes from my exposition of Galatians 5:16-26: