If you have trusted in Christ, God cherishes you—regardless of your earthly status or your recent successes and failures.⇦Tweet that!
Centuries of Holy Muttedness
Unless you’re an awesome athlete you’ll remember the shame of not getting picked when your neighborhood or school friends were choosing up sides for a ballgame.
The shame of standing there alone with the three other scrubs was almost unbearable.
If you can capture that feeling again, then you can easily imagine how a Gentile believer felt to walk into a mostly Jewish congregation in the First Century.
They were the insiders, the ones with a long history with this God you just met or were seeking. They had a religious pedigree, you were a holy mutt.⇦Tweet that!
And then, Jesus showed up!
Christ’s coming changed everything.
There would no longer be a pedigreed people, privileged by physical birth. Now, all who believe become pedigreed children of the living God.
Here’s how Paul lays out his argument in Galatians 3:26-29:
Christ’s coming dramatically changed believers’ relationship with God (26-29).
Note: Paul is contrasting the status of believers before and after Christ. Before Christ came, Israel was under the care of a pegagogue (tutor, nanny)—the Law that exposed the need for a Savior. But when Christ came, everything changed.
Now all who trust in Christ are adult sons (26-27).
Note: This is speaking of spiritual baptism. What unites us to Christ and one another is the baptizing work of the Holy Spirit that occurs the moment we believe in Christ (1 Corinthians 12:13). It’s also true that water baptism dramatizes and pictures what happened when we believed in Christ. Much like when a Roman male child reached son status and the father gave them a special toga to identify them as a son with full rights and privileges.
Now all who trust in Christ share the same privilege and position, regardless of their privilege and position in this world (28).
Note: This is a radical departure from the Jewish view of access to God. Gentiles, slaves, and women did not have the same access to God in Israel’s worship. Jewish free men were viewed as special to God. “The reason for the threefold thanksgiving was not disparagement of Gentiles, slaves or women as persons but the fact that they were disqualified from several religious privileges which were open to free Jewish males.” (FF Bruce) Galatians 3:28 says nothing explicitly whatsoever about how male/female relationships should be conducted in daily life or in the organization of the church. It’s not erasing distinctions in roles on earth or in the church but making all equal in access to God.
Now all who trust in Christ are spiritual descendants of Abraham inheriting the promise of justification and sanctification by faith (29).
Note: The Jews will inherit the promises given to Abraham’s physical descendants—physical Kingdom on earth ruled from Jerusalem. All believers—Jew and Gentile—inherit the promises given to Abraham’s spiritual descendants—justification by faith and the reception of the Spirit.
And Mutts Became Pedigreed Children of the Living God!
If you have received new life by trusting in Jesus, you are no longer an outsider in the family of God. Your past doesn’t matter. Your family of origin doesn’t matter. You don’t need your name on a pew of a church. You don’t need to know any insider religio-talk.
Believer, you’re in, you’re loved, you’re cherished.⇦Tweet that!
Galatians 3:26-29 is irrefutable truth that you’ll never be a holy mutt again! Your status has changed. I hope you’ll listen tony friend, Dave Anderson teach this on the podcast and refer to the free online commentary of on Galatians.
Don’t let any religious jerk tell you that you don’t belong.⇦Tweet that!
Question: What do you think about the sureness of you being an absolute insider with God, regardless of your recent performance? How does this perspective affect the way you look at your life? It’s challenges? It’s victories? Your successes and your failures?