Galatians 4:23: But the son of the slave was born according to the flesh, while the son of the free woman was born through promise.
Paul wanted to impress on the church in Galatia how far off from the mark they were to embrace “another version” of the gospel, how wrong it was!
It is like choosing to be enslaved when you have the option to be free; to be privileged or be deprived; to be subservient or to rule; to be tied up or to be free; to be cursed or to be blessed. It is the difference between light and darkness. It is the difference between change and chains, between blindness and sight, between the past and the future, between being great and being grounded.
In another place in that book, he sought to impress it on the Galatians that the law was a school master to bring us to Christ so that we can rule in the house of our father, saying they should not go back to be in bondage to the lower elements (Galatians 1-6), to legalistic observances. We should leave being ruled and start ruling. We have a choice to make.
For the church in Galatia at that time, the argument of those who advocate an embrace of the law, circumcision, as a basis of salvation seemed persuasive. It has an historical basis but no basis in Christ, which makes all the difference.
They appeal to human achievement, but Paul said if your righteousness is based on what you have done, then Christ died in vain. It means you have cut yourself from Christ, have left your stand of faith (acting based on the reality of the unseen), what Christ has done and not what you have done. Otherwise, we disqualify ourselves from being blessed with faithful Abraham. The bible says that Abraham believed God when he was told he was going to be the father of many nations, and he believed, and that was counted to him for righteousness. The right route for us is faith in the Word, Jesus (John 1:1-3).
We cannot now take the route of works and arrive at the righteousness destination, it is faith or nothing. You cannot seek to end up with the promises while you embark on a regime of self-help. If we are not depending on Jesus then we are no where to be found, we have no right to the blessing, because he (Jesus) is the one promised all those thing, to him alone be the praise.
God told Abraham: in your seed shall all the earth be blessed, and that seed is singular, Christ, who also doubles as the son of David who is also the one who is the Messiah (Matthew 1:1), appointed to be the ruler on the earth, and you relate with and connect to him by faith (Hebrews 11:6) to rule with him. Paul said that he does not want to have his righteousness based on works but the righteousness which is by faith in Jesus (Philippians 3:8-10).
The bible says that all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God (Roman 3:23) and now have been saved by grace through faith. Remove faith, which is sole reliance on the sacrificial work of Jesus, reliance on the pure gift of the righteousness of Jesus, and we are lost, in bondage, and deluded.
Paul asked the Galatian, who bewitched you what you discontinued your obedience to the truth, from your commitment to the truth of salvation, which is faith in Jesus alone. You carry the internal template of the one who gave birth to you, so if we are “born of the slave woman,” we would be slaves, and if we are born of the free woman, we are free.
The ultimate form of bondage is bondage to sin; that is why the greatest deliverance is deliverance from it (John 8:25-36). Whoever partakes of any religion that does not offer a one-time permanent solution to sin is the child of the “slave woman, the bondwoman.”
Jesus told a group of would-be disciples that they are not free, no matter what their natural circumstance, or their lineage shows, if they are in bondage to sin. That is spiritual bondage. That is the bondage that Adam and Eve sold themselves into when they are sought independence from the hold of the wold of God.
Since we are made by the word of God, being attached to it is what true freedom is for about. Otherwise, it is like saying the cord connecting a TV to the power source is bondage. It is not. It is freedom to be all that it can be.
Sin would be like virus corrupting a computer system, shutting it down. That computer may be moved about and seem to have some freedom, but the virus which is an internal corrupting influence compromises its abilities and that is bondage. Bondage is limitation, but what commitment to the word of God does is liberate.
The Law of Moses did not bring freedom from sin, in which God views you apart from sin, as righteous as righteous as can be.
But the sacrifices that were made was not a cure from sin, but a reminder of sin (Hebrews 10:1-12 ), in which sin is retained in the consciousness of man and close association with God is impossible since he is of a purer eyes to behold iniquity (Habakkuk 1:3) even in your consciousness. But in Christ, those of us born of the free woman, get to be free from sin, past, present and future.
Our past gets cleaned up in Christ. In him we die to our past and get a new future. Our past can be forgiven and it no longer comes to God’s mind again. We become new creatures. We stand on a new platform, and we no longer have the weight on our neck. We come to Jesus with our past bondage and he nails all of them to the cross (Colossians 2:14).
In the present we take on his life and walk in it, walking in righteousness. Presently we have eternal life (John 3:16). In the present we come to the throne of grace to obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need. And for now and in the future we are guaranteed no condemnation (Romans 8:1).
- Where We Find Freedom (thebeggardanced.com)
- You Belong To God! (newjerusalemcoming.wordpress.com)
- We become “foolish Galatians” when… (melwild.wordpress.com)
- Mercy: God’s Covenant Love (freedomarc.wordpress.com)
- 2 Kings 11-12, Galatians 2 (vesselsofclay.org)
- To Make Us Slaves (4110fearnot.wordpress.com)
- What Jesus Did is Good News (wherelivingbegins.wordpress.com)
- “All for One, and One for All” – Sermon on Galatians 3:23-29 (musingsfromabricolage.wordpress.com)
- Blessed Slavery (thejaggedword.com)