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Mar 13

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FROM FAITH UNTO FAITH (6)

Galatians chapter three is a great chapter in the Abrahamic Promise! It is also a very demanding chapter on “the faith” once delivered unto the saints (Jude). In this article we hope to reach the end of the chapter, as Paul does so beautifully.
Our first point that Paul has brought to our attention is that the faith had come, as he wrote: “But before faith came, …” (verse 23). If something had “came;” we know at least two things: 1) there was a time before the coming of it and 2) there is a period where the faith was or shall we say, “is?” Paul describes the period of time before the “faith” had come. He does so in these words: “But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed” (verse 23). We must stop and call attention to the pronoun in this verse, Paul uses the pronoun “we,” as in “we were kept under the law.” So, we must face the fact that we today are not included in the “we” of Paul’s words. However, over the years I have heard preacher after preacher and Bible class teacher after Bible class teacher, teach that this “we’ includes us today! Simply stated, we today are included in Paul’s “we.” Friends, it just is not true! How do I know this? Hear Paul: “we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards (notice Paul’s “afterwards;” this means there is a before) be revealed.” Two periods of time covered in Paul’s words: 1) the age of Moses and 2) the age of Christ, wherein Christ is the law giver. It was the Jews and not the Gentiles as Paul has so clearly stated, “kept under the law!” We today have never been under the law; therefore, we are not included in Paul’s “we!”
Paul further describes that period of time in these words: “Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.” There was no “justification under the law of Moses, as “justification” is in “the gospel of Christ!” Rom. 1:16-17). Once more before continuing, that we today are not included in Paul’s “us!” The “we” and the “us” are the same people, the Jews! Here is what Paul wrote and we would be amiss, if we did not point it out, that as Paul’s words state: “Wherefore the law was our (the Jews) schoolmaster.” Question: “What was the “schoolmaster?” Paul had just written, “the law was our schoolmaster.” The law was like a slave who oversaw a child’s growth and education, to see that the child received the right education. Therefore, as you read this, envision a slave who is responsible for the education of the child, here the Jews, the “schoolmaster” was to lead the child through the years until he could put the child (the Jews) hand’s until he could put that hand in the hand of Christ! This was the overriding purpose of the law of Moses, as it was in force unto the law of Christ was set forth.
Paul now writes: “But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster” (verse 25). Did you notice the words, “after that faith is come.” Yes, the Greek word “the” is in the Greek Majority Text. It is “the faith is come!” There was a time when “the faith” was not present but Paul says it had now come, it was a reality! When “the faith” had come, then, the Jews were no longer under a schoolmaster, as they were now under the “the faith!” Moving to verse twenty-six, which reads: “For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.” Yes, once more the “the” appears before the word “faith,” this means, it is referring to “the faith” which was once delivered unto the saints (Jude 3).
Paul has now reached the climax of the third chapter. This is done in verses twenty-seven and twenty-eight and concluding in verse twenty-eight and thirty-nine. Here are the words: “For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.” Here Paul’s aims, to show that it is Christ, in the gospel of Christ and not Moses for where salvation, justification, is in Christ! Here we must keep in mind, that Paul is addressing the Jews, he is reminding them, how they became children of God and it is in the gospel of Christ, it is Christ! In verse twenty-seven, Paul gives the reason, as it starts with that little Greek word “gar,” and it gives the reason for the above; therefore, “For,” “for” what? “For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ” (verse 27). The reason for giving up Moses, the “schoolmaster” is that there is no salvation in Moses! ,Only those who have been baptized into Christ, are the children of God and no more! Yes, it is true that “baptism” stands between being in Christ and out of Christ. Is there salvation out of Christ? “God forbid!”
Concluding with Paul’s words: “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus” (verse 27). In Christ we are one, we have all been saved in the same manner, by obeying the same gospel, which puts us in Christ! Therefore, Paul wrote: “And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.” Here are those words “the promise.” Yes, the promise that God made to Abraham is fulfilled when we, both Jew and Gentile, are baptized into Christ, wherein we are all one!

Frank R. Williams

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