September 5, Reading 3 – Galatians 6

Reading

Audio, Visual

SAA Notes

It is no mistake that Paul ends his treatise on salvation by faith and not by Law with teaching on works. We are saved unto good works. What works are emphasised by Paul to this congregation?

SJA Notes

“For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life.”

Here again we see Paul layering the two paths, choices, the two ways to sow grain.

The flesh – Which reaps corruption.

The Spirit – Which reaps eternal life.

This is a simple understanding to have, it makes sense, but something that is hard for us to put into practice.

But this is why Paul wrote these letters, filled with the Holy Spirit! This is why we have God’s word written down for us, a book like no other book, a WORD like no other word!

This is why we have His Spirit writing God’s word on our hearts as we endeavour to write it on our hearts, to place it on the frontlets of our eyes, for Him to plant it deep down within us that we would bear much fruit.

Because thought it is hard, as we wrestle with our broken failings, it is not impossible in Jesus! He makes all things possible where it was once impossible!

And so we can cry with full assurance: Hallelujah, what a Saviour!

* Dear God,

Please strengthen us in our weakness so that we not grow weary of doing good. Of bearing Your Name well, walking in humble obedience and pointing people to Jesus in thought, word and deed.

We would reap eternal life Father Above – Please help us to sow in Your Spirit.

Please plant Your Word deep down in us, that it would grow and bud and bear forth much fruit.

Amen.

September 4, Reading 3 – Galatians 5:10-26

Reading

Audio, Visual

SAA Notes

Freedom in Christ is freedom to serve one another in love. Love is fulfilling of the Ten Commandments in a manner that God defines. Read Jesus’ words on the Commandments in the Sermon on the Mount – Matthew 5:17-48.

SJA Notes

“If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit.”

How practical is this advice from Paul! How convicting it should be to us!

Because we so often see our claiming to be Spirit-filled, but instead are worldly and full of the works of the flesh.

How different these two lists are.

It is sobering to work through them.

For the list of the works of the flesh – Are we keeping in step with the Spirit but not doing these things?

For the list of the works of the Spirit – Are we keeping in step with the Spirit by bearing these fruit, working them out in our thoughts, words and deeds?

Our claims must be backed up by our practice.

* Father God,

Your Spirit is life-giving, and You have given it to us – Thank You and Hallelujah!

Please help us to live in step with Your Spirit; To run from and resist the temptation to do the works of the flesh; And to grasp and run to and work hard at the fruit of the Spirit.

Please Lord, help us to not be conceited. Help us to not provoke or envy one another.

Amen.

September 3, Reading 3 – Galatians 4:21-5:9

Reading

Audio, Visual

SAA Notes

Freedom! Freedom is not freedom to be like God, to be the one in control. Freedom is freedom from sin through faith in Christ! Free to live with love, justice, courage, goodness, mercy, peace. Free to live without arrogance, manipulative behaviour, substance abuse, immorality, anger and malice.

SJA Notes

“For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for anything, but only faith working through love.”

We get this wrong a fair bit. We can all probably bring to mind one or two people who take a limited view of the practice of holiness and try and restrict everyone around them to that view. But we can probably also remember times when we have failed in the same way.

Paul is clear.

When you get stuck on a tradition, on a sign or symbol above everything else – When that is your focus and weight – Be careful!

Circumcision of the body was a big deal – You only have to read Abraham’s story to know that.

But it was a pointer to a deeper truth, to a circumcision of the heart. A higher reality where the Spirit writes His law upon our hearts, plants His word deep within us so that we bear fruit.

Faith working through love.

* Lord God,

You are our great God, we believe in You – Please help us in our unbelief!

Your love is steadfast and unfailing – Please help us to work through Your love, expressing our faith in You which is Your gift to us.

Help us not to be hindered by limiting our view of Your truth, Your wonderful grace and mercy to us.

Amen.