Not Going Back to Prison: Ethics of Law & Gospel

Passage:Galatians 3:23-29

Preacher: Ben Phillips

Category: Grace

There are few things as horrible has having to return to a prison. Once having been freed, to then be forced to return to imprisonment. And not just physical jail, for there are many kinds of prisons. This is the spiritual concern of Paul in his letter to the Galatians, they having been freed by faith in Christ from the burden of pleasing God through (futile) efforts of keeping His Law, they want to return back to the Law as the basis of their righteousness. In today's passage a the end of chapter 3, Paul teaches that the Law serves a purpose, to keep us contained or imprisoned, until faith came along. He then shows that faith in Christ not only frees us from the burden of the Law, but it gives us a new identity in Christ which transcends, but does not obliterate, gender, race, or social standing. This right distinguishing of the Law and Gospel has profound implications as we Christians face complex and polarizing tragedies, like the one that recently occurred in Orlando.