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Sanctification through the Spirit

Galatians 5

Outline of the Letter

  1. Personal: Paul is called by God to be a Preacher of Justification.
  2. Doctrinal: Paul provides the Principles of Justification.
  3. Practical: Paul outlines the Privileges of Justification.
    1. Sanctification by the Spirit

Our text

  1. Turning to Law ruins grace. (1-12)
    1. Christ will be no benefit to you. (v. 2)
    2. Works based righteousness requires complete obedience. (v.3)
    3. You can’t live by grace and law at the same time. (v.4)
      1. One cancels out the other.
      2. Legalism attempts to do the impossible, change the old nature making it obey God (without the grace of God)
    4. Law causes the runner from reaching the truth. ( v. 7)
    5. Contrast
      1. 1. I have been set free by Christ. I am no longer under bondage to the Law (Gal. 5:1-12).
      2. 2. But I need something—Someone—to control my life from within. That Someone is the Holy Spirit (Gal. 5:13-26).
      3. 3. Through the Spirit’s love, I have a desire to live for others, not for self (Gal. 6:1-10).
      4. 4. This life of liberty is so wonderful, I want to live it to the glory of God; for He is the One making it possible (Gal. 6:11-18).
      5. Contrast with:
      6. 1. If I obey these rules, I will become a more spiritual person. I am a great admirer of this religious leader, so I now submit myself to his system.
      7. 2. I believe I have the strength to obey and improve myself. I do what I am told, and measure up to the standards set for me.
      8. 3. I’m making progress. I don’t do some of the things I used to do. Other people compliment me on my obedience and discipline. I can see that I am better than others in my fellowship. How wonderful to be so spiritual.
      9. 4. If only others were like me! God is certainly fortunate that I am His. I have a desire to share this with others so they can be as I am. Our group is growing and we have a fine reputation. Too bad other groups are not as spiritual as we are. No matter how you look at it, legalism is an insidious, dangerous enemy.
  2. Grace and liberty do not equal license. (13-15)
    1. Judaizers believed that living by grace through faith would lead to an unbridled life.
    2. Living by grace admits there must be a divine “influence” to maintain righteousness, the Holy Spirit.
  3. Liberty and holiness are by the Spirit. (13-26)
    1. Through grace we can have freedom from himself and the tyranny of the sinful nature.
    2. The Spirit takes us from Law to Love. (v. 14)
      1. Love is the key ingredient to upright living among men and before God.
      2. Romans 5:5
      3. Galatians 5:6, 22
    3. The Spirit and the sinful nature are opposed to one another.
      1. There is conflict within.
      2. Romans 7:15-25
    4. “Walk in the Spirit”
      1. Kep in step with the Spirit
        1. Word
        2. Prayer
        3. Worship
        4. Praise
        5. Thanksgiving
        6. Fellowship with believers
    5. The Spirit enables us to bear fruit.
      1. The contrast between works and fruit is important. A machine in a factory works, and turns out a product, but it could never manufacture fruit. Fruit must grow out of life, and, in the case of the believer, it is the life of the Spirit (Gal. 5:25). When you think of “works” you think of effort, labor, strain, and toil; when you think of “fruit” you think of beauty, quietness, the unfolding of life. (Warren Weirsbe)
      2. Godward aspects of the fruit
        1. Love, Joy, Peace – These abound as we become immersed in the things of God and experience His warm contentment.
      3. Manward aspects of the fruit
        1. Longsuffering – Courageouse endurance, slowness in avenging wrongs
        2. Gentleness – Kindness
        3. Goodness – Love in action
      4. Selfward aspects of the fruit
        1. Faithfulness
        2. Meekness – Power under control
        3. Self-control