SS lesson April 26
Our Sunday school lessons now moves from the prophecy’s of Daniel to a study on the book of Galatians. The Bible teaches we are to be growing in the knowledge of God. Our Sunday school lessons are a great way to do this. We will just take a few quotes from the lesson to think upon.
(1) The one true gospel: Salvation is found only through faith in Jesus Christ.
(2) Paul made a practice of beginning his letters, or Epistles, by identifying himself as an apostle that is, one sent by God with a message
(Galatians 1:1-2). Drawing attention to the authority God had given him to share his truth. In his letter to the Galatians he added that he was “sent not from men nor by a man”. He wanted to emphasize his God - given authority before dealing with their involvement in a false gospel.
(3) The gospel must not have anything added to it- such as additional requirements for salvation. Nor anything taken from it - such as the need for repentance and faith.
(4) After greeting the church at Galatia, Paul drew their attention to the one true gospel (Galatians 1:1-5). According to the plan of God the Father, Jesus Christ died for the sins of the world. As a result, people can enter into a relationship with God that begins in this life and extends beyond this age into all eternity. Each human being stands condemned because of his or her sin- but each may also be justified before God by believing in the sacrifice of Christ ( see Romans 3:22-24).
(5) In strong, decisive terms, Paul condemned anyone who dared preach a message contradicting the one he had already given them. He went on to say that even if he- an apostle of Christ - would turn away from the truth and promote a different gospel, he would deserve condemnation. Paul was a servant of Christ, and would not altar his message for human approval. There is only one gospel. The gospel of Christ which he preached.
(6) Jesus gave his followers a clear set of directions: the news of his teaching and of his saving work on the cross must be made known to the entire world. ( see Mathew 28:18-20; like 24:46-49). Contained within the great commission is the implication that Jesus followers would have specific forms of service assigned by him.
(7) The only request that church leaders made to Paul and Barnabas was that ministry to the poor not be neglected. The early church was careful to help those in need, even from the beginning
( see acts 16:1-7; 1 corinthians 16:1-2). Along with their common love for the gospel, helping the poor was an area of ministry that bound the hearts of the apostles together.
(8) Justification by faith, not by works, does not mean that Christians can live however they desire. Paul emphasized that sin in the life of a Christian is inconsistent with a life of faith. The expression “God forbid!” Appears twice in Galatian. And it serves to strongly emphasize the point being made. Christians must still resist sin and pursue righteousness through reliance upon the Holy Spirit.
(9) Gods grace is the foundation for the life of freedom lived by all Christians, including the gentile converts. Paul declared that he would not neglect the proclamation of the necessity of Gods grace. The death of Christ provides Gods love and grace to sinful humanity.