The last three books we’ve studied are Galatians, Mark and Luke, and it’s been a tremendously transforming last few weeks. Studying the Gospels for myself, and having more light shed on the reality of what Jesus suffered for our sins has been an eye-opening experience. Something I’ve been really struck with as I’ve studied has been the way in which the Pharisees completely missed who Jesus was. They spent their whole lives attempting to look righteous – playing the part of “holy” – and the Holy One Himself was in their midst. Rather than rejoicing, they condemned Him to death. They had the opportunity to have their lives and hearts changed, but because they were expecting a Messiah who would reward them for their observance of the law, a Messiah who would come as a conquering king to overthrow the Roman Empire, they chose to reject Him. The Savior was amongst them and is with us still today through the Holy Spirit, yet how often do we refuse to recognize how much we need Him? Without Him, our sins make us deserving of the death He died; through Him, we are made righteous, just as He is completely righteous. Join us in thanking God for what He has done for us through sending His Son, and follow Him with your whole life! This is the call for those He has rescued – those who know they need a Savior. The kingdom of God is in our midst – and Jesus – God Himself – has died, so you can be a part of it.
If you’re reading the Bible with me, the next three books are Acts, 1 & 2 Thessalonians – you can read all three in less than three hours.
Main Idea: Paul writes to the Galatians, urging them to remember that they are justified by faith and not by works of the flesh. Paul opposes those who claim that one must be circumcised to receive salvation. in Christ, all believers are heirs and sons, but if they submit to any part of the law (such as circumcision), they are under the whole law, and can therefore not hope to be righteous.
Reason Written: The Galatians have been given false teaching with regards to circumcision. They have been taught that they must be circumcised to receive salvation, which is contrary to the gospel of Christ.
TT: Grace through faith in Jesus Christ has saved believers from the condemnation of the law. (Galatians 4:4-5)
Main Idea: By recognizing that Jesus came as a Suffering Servant, the recipients of this gospel would be encouraged to suffer with Jesus for the faith, despite the persecution they were enduring under the Roman Empire.
Reason Written: This gospel was written as an encouragement to an audience who was suffering under great persecution.
TT: Believers are called to take great risks for the kingdom of God. (Mark 15:43-46)
Main Idea: Jesus has come to seek and save those who do not depend upon their own self-proclaimed righteousness, but those who know their desperate need for a Savior.
Reason Written: Luke writes an orderly account of the life, death and resurrection of Jesus for Theophilus, so he may have certainty with regards to what he has been taught about Jesus thusfar.
TT: Jesus is Savior for those who realize their great need for Him. (Luke 11:39-41)