Christian Liberty – What Price Freedom?

Galatians 5:1-6

It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.

Mark my words! I, Paul, tell you that if you let yourselves be circumcised, Christ will be of no value to you at all. Again I declare to every man who lets himself be circumcised that he is obligated to obey the whole law. You who are trying to be justified by the law have been alienated from Christ; you have fallen away from grace. For through the Spirit we eagerly await by faith the righteousness for which we hope. For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision has any value. The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love.

FREEDOM AND LIBERTY

  • Christ has made us free

GRACE – UNMERITED FAVOR

GOD’S RICHES AT CHRIST’S EXPENSE

GOD’S REDEEMING ACT CONCERNING EVERYONE

In the Old Testament, Moses continually offered sacrifices.  In the New Testament, Christ offered Himself as a sacrifice once and for all time.

  • Free through His shed Blood – Freedom in Christ

Romans 10:13 – For whoever calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved.

Galatians 5:1 – Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage.

Freely given, freely bestowed, yet if we do not believe, we cannot receive!

John 8:32 – And you shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free.

  • Free through believing on His name

Romans 10:9 – …if you confess with your mouth the LORD Jesus…

Romans 6:18 – And having been set free from sin, you became slaves of righteousness. 

Acts 4:12 – Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.

  • The verse above does not mention, nor does any other verse in God’s Word indicate, that there is another name whereby we can be saved.  In fact, it states emphatically there is no other name.  To whom do we confess?  God and God alone.  Since He provided the “Way” (through His selfless sacrifice), He paid the cost (His own blood) and completed the work (IT IS FINISHED), then it seems very apparent that it is to Him and only Him that we confess our sins.
  • Free through confession of sins

Romans 10:9 –  if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.

  • Free through walking by faith

2 Corinthians 5:7 – For we walk by faith, not by sight.

  • Do not become Entangled Again in Bondage

Romans 8:2-3 – For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death.  For what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh, God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, on account of sin:  He condemned sin in the flesh

2 Corinthians 5:21 – For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.

I Corinthians 7:22 – For he who is called in the Lord while a slave is the Lord’s freedman.  Likewise he who is called while free is Christ’s slave.  You were bought with a price; do not become slaves of men.  

Galatians 3:13 – Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us (for it is written, ‘Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree’)…

I Peter 2:24-25 – who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness—by whose stripes we were healed.  For you were like sheep going astray, but have now returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.

I Peter 3:18 – For Christ also suffered once for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive by the Spirit…

  • Sin is bondage

Romans 6:7 – For he who has died has been freed from sin.

  • Bad habits are bondage

We often start our list with drinking, smoking, etc., but what about envy, greed, self-righteousness, lying, gossiping…    Should I stop now?

  • Deliberate failures are bondage
  • Deliberate omission of right doing is bondage

Galatians 5:1 – Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage.

Galatians 5:1 – Christ has set us free to live a free life.  So take your stand!  Never again let anyone put a harness of slavery on you.  The Message

THE LAW FAILS

  • Keeping a list of rules fails

Matthew 23:4 – For they bind heavy burdens, hard to bear, and lay them on men’s shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers.

Galatians 3:26-27 –“For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.  For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.

Galatians 2:16 – …knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law but by faith in Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, that we might be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the law; for by the works of the law no flesh shall be justified.

Acts 15:10 – Now therefore, why do you test God by putting a yoke on the neck of the disciples which neither your fathers nor we were able to bear? 

Galatians 13:38-39  – Therefore let it be known to you, brethren, that through this Man is preached to you the forgiveness of sins; and by Him everyone who believes is justified form all things from which you could not be justified by the law of Moses. 

  • Walking away from Christ fails

Romans 6:5-8 – For if we have been united together in the likeness of His death, certainly we also shall be in the likeness of His resurrection, knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin.  For he who has died has been freed from sin.  Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him.

Hebrews 10:26 – For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a certain fearful expectation of judgment, and fiery indignation which will devour the adversaries.

FAITH IS THE ANSWER

FAITH – FORSAKING ALL, I TRUST HIM

Romans 5:1 –  Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God though our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. 

I Corinthians 3:11 – For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.

I Timothy 2:5 – For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time. 

Hebrews 11:1 –“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

All through the eleventh chapter of Hebrews we find the beginning of verse after verse with the phrase “by faith”, “by faith”, “by faith.”   Whether individuals or circumstances…it was “by faith.” 

  • Faith in the shed blood of Jesus
  • Faith in walking in love
  • Faith in the name of Jesus
  • Faith in the Word of God
  • Faith through the power of the Holy Spirit

THANK GOD FOR THE FAITH WE HAVE IN CHRIST JESUS OUR LORD.                  

The Law and Faith

Galatians 2:11-21

Now when Peter had come to Antioch, I withstood him to his face, because he was to be blamed; for before certain men came from James, he would eat with the Gentiles; but when they came, he withdrew and separated himself, fearing those who were of the circumcision. And the rest of the Jews also played the hypocrite with him, so that even Barnabas was carried away with their hypocrisy.

But when I saw that they were not straightforward about the truth of the gospel, I said to Peter before them all, “If you, being a Jew, live in the manner of Gentiles and not as the Jews, why do you compel Gentiles to live as Jews? We who are Jews by nature, and not sinners of the Gentiles, knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law but by faith in Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, that we might be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the law; for by the works of the law no flesh shall be justified.

“But if, while we seek to be justified by Christ, we ourselves also are found sinners, is Christ therefore a minister of sin? Certainly not! For if I build again those things which I destroyed, I make myself a transgressor. For I through the law died to the law that I might live to God. I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. I do not set aside the grace of God; for if righteousness comes through the law, then Christ died in vain.”

CONFRONTATION BETWEEN PAUL AND PETER

  • Peter was hypocritical
  • Followed pressure of the crowd
  • Showed prejudice

JUSTIFICATION – FAITH VS. WORKS

  • Not by the Law

Romans 3:23 –   For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.

James 2:10 – For whoever shall keep the whole law, and yet stumble in one point, he is guilty of all.

  • By faith in Jesus Christ

Ephesians 2:8-9 – For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.

RIGHTEOUSNESS – FAITH VS. WORKS

Question:  By teaching us to trust in faith alone for our salvation, is Christ making us sinners, encouraging us to disregard sin in our lives?

  • A man who tries to keep the Law makes himself a sinner when he breaks it.
  • A man who trusts in God for his salvation will then follow Christ – because of love and gratitude.  Love is a greater force than fear or duty.

2 Corinthians 5:14-15 –  For the love of Christ compels us,  because we judge thus:  that if One died for all, then all died; and He died for all, that those who live should live no longer for themselves, but for Him who died for them and rose again.   

I John 3:16 – Hereby we see the love of God, because he laid down his life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.

HOW ARE WE JUSTIFIED?

  • By dying to the Law – to any effort on our part or any dependence on our own goodness.
  • By being crucified with Christ – by identifying with Christ in death to our own self – our good and our bad.
  • By allowing Christ’s divine nature to live in us. 

John 15:4-5 – Abide in me, and I in you.  As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me.    

Ephesians 3:17-19   that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height–to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.