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Bad News about the Good News (1 of 13)
Series: The Bondage Breaker
Message Truth: The message of the gospel is the message of grace. Salvation is a free gift of God to everyone who will trust Christ alone for eternal life. We can never trust in grace plus human achievement, regardless of what form it takes.
Introduction: Earlier this week through the technology of CD-ROM, I went back and read the heart moving reports of the 52 Americans held hostage in Iran for 444 days. It was one of the biggest news stories of the year, even overshadowing the inauguration of Ronald Reagan as President of the United States.
It was a grand time of celebration for the nation. Perhaps in recent history the word freedom had not been so prevalent. The very airspace once out of Iran was referred to as Freedom. The hospital in Germany was referred to as Hotel Freedom. The Boeing jet that brought the hostages to New York was dubbed Freedom.
Perhaps freedom is never more precious until we see it slipping away. When Paul wrote the book of Galatians he wrote with amazement that people who had experienced spiritual freedom would willfully and consciously choose to return to a life of spiritual bondage.
A Brief Overview of Galatians
A. Background: Galatians is not a detached theological treatise but a deeply
personal letter. It was written from the grieving heart of the Apostle Paul for his
spiritual children (churches in Antioch, Iconium, Lystra, and Derbe, established
on his first missionary journey, Acts 13-14) whose faith and living were being
undermined by false teachers known as Judaizers.
B. The Problem: The Judaizers were causing great confusion and seriously
distorting the gospel. They taught that Gentiles must become Jews by
circumcision before they could become Christians, and that all Christians, Jews
and Gentiles, were righteous before God only if they remained bound under the
Mosaic laws, ...
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