Date: October 9, 2022
Speaker: Trent Thompson
Scripture: Galatians 2:17-21
All right, good morning. Good to see you. If you’ve got a Bible open with me to Galatians chapter two, we’re gonna look at verse 17 through 21. Thank you, John. Miss Foster, come on up, and help me out everybody welcome, my friend, Miss Foster, you can do a little better than that. You to hold this Don’t peek in the box. Alright, so you know, I like to make sure we know what we’re singing. So here’s what I want to make sure you understand we just saying that our God is the Ancient of Days. That’s directly from Daniel chapter seven, is his vision that Daniel has an init. What he’s saying is, the ancient days comes and sits on a throne to judge all the nations because he predates all the nations. When we say that God is the Ancient of Days, God the Father, what we’re saying is he has all the power because he pre exists, everything. And then the beauty which doesn’t necessarily come into that song is that in Daniel chapter seven, after verse nine, where God the ancient days comes and sits on the throne, what happens next is that one like a Son of Man, which we know to be the title that Jesus takes for himself in the New Testament, comes and the Ancient of Days, gives the Son of Man, an everlasting kingdom, says, this is yours forever. I’m the Ancient of Days, I pre exist in order there, which by the way, we use the term ancient negatively. Sometimes if you’re getting ancient, you’re just only getting better. All right, you get more like God. And so he says, the ancient days that gives the Son of man, a kingdom, and it’s an everlasting and eternal kingdom. And Jesus refers to himself then in the New Testament is the Son of Man. So when we’re singing ancient of days, I just want you to know, you are singing the words of God from the very mouth of God, to declare to him something he said about himself. And it should give us peace. Yes. Awesome. All right, fantastic. So we’re gonna be in Galatians chapter two today. Introduce yourself, friend. You tell us more. What grade are you in? Eighth? Eighth grade. All right, fantastic. How’s eighth grade going so far? Good. Good. All right. Fantastic. Well, the mic up nice and tight to your face. So I’ve asked my friend, Miss Foster here to do us a favor. There’s something in this box. She’s going to close your eyes and she’s going to describe it for us. So I just want you to use any descriptor words you think of as you feel what’s in the box, and it’s not going to hurt you what’s in this box. All right, I promise. Alright, so close your eyes. No peeking. Stick your hand in there. Just kidding. Right, so tell us a little bit about what you’re feeling. You can give it as you go. It’s hard. Okay. It’s hard. Good. What else do you feel? Her face looks very confused if you can see what I see. Right now. Yeah, you’re trying to make that part out. What do you think? Just like a trunk or like an elephant? A trunk or an okay. Yeah. All right. Feels like a trunk or an elephant. Good. What color is it? No, no. Very good. All right. Hey, great job. You want to see what this is? It’s an often well done. Good job. All right. Give me a round applause. I’ll take it for you. That’s perfect. Thank you. So we’ve got an elephant here. Have you ever been asked to describe something that you can’t see? That’s hard to do? Right. I mean, I asked her what color she’s like, how do you expect me to answer that question? Right? Yes, she identifies She did really well, she identified as an elephant. Elephants are kind of special in our house. This was a wedding gift that we received. I just remember thinking when we got it, this is a really weird wedding gift. I just wanted big cereal bowls. That’s what I was hoping for just the big exercise. So I can basically have two bowls in one. That’s all I wanted, right? We got this elephant. I remember thinking like, that’s weird. All right. Yet, it’s become one of my favorite pieces, because actually, we have started to we have elephants around our house. They represent the different members of our family. So we actually have an elephant for Deacon and one for Emerson, one for Kelly, one for me, one for Amanda that I got on one of my trips to Africa. So elephants have kind of become special tests. So this went from being weird to being one of my favorite things in our house. Right? So but you know, our friend, she described it right? And she said, Well, it’s hard and smooth. She, she felt the trunk, she identified it. So she did a great job of describing something that you can’t see. Yet there’s a challenge to that, right. It’s not the easiest thing to describe something you can’t see.
If we come to Galatians chapter two today, that’s exactly what Paul is going to do for us. He’s going to try to describe for us, he’s going to succeed in describing for us I’m going to try and to describe what he describes, of this internal reality, this inner so what I’m inviting you to do today is to consider with your mind, and with your heart, an internal reality, something you cannot see, but that is very, very real. That has taken place inside you if you’re in Christ Jesus. So we’re going to be feeling around in the box a little bit today. Asking God’s word to instruct us and to teach us now here’s what I want. You understand just because you can’t see it doesn’t I mean, it’s not real, right? For those of us who are like really empirically driven, something that is unseen is every bit as real in a Christian worldview, something that can’t be seen, it’s going to be the key to understanding the rest of the book of Galatians. What Paul is going to do now is he’s going to take a little we’ve been taught about justification by faith cannot be justified by them. If you remember last week, we left off in verses 15 and 16. He was saying, no one is justified by keeping the rules. Now, again, Paul’s not anti law, right, what we call in theological speak antinomianism was just means against the law, like the law itself is bad, you don’t think the law is bad, he will recognize the laws are righteous standard, and has to be lived up to, but what he’s trying to get through to you in the eye, is that you can’t be justified by keeping the law, no one will be justified before God by keeping the law because no one can keep the law. Now he’s gonna go into much greater depth in chapters three and four about that reality and why we can’t keep the law on what is our relationship with the law look like. But before he does that, it right here in these five, six verses in Galatians, chapter two, what he wants to do is give us a little foreshadowing, a little sneak peek, little trailer, if you will, of Galatians, five and six, where he’s going to talk to us about one question specifically. The question is this, if we’re justified by faith, and not by the law, won’t that mean that people are just going to do whatever they want and live crazy, wild lives? Then just go, I’ll just ask God to forgive me afterwards? Have we heard this one before? It’s a very relevant subject, there’s still this tension that we feel in the church and among the people of God, of people who want to go back to setting rules and regulations as the way to dictate a righteous life. What Paul is going to say is, it’s not rules and regulations that will help you live a righteous life. In fact, the law cannot produce a God honoring life. He’s gonna explain why the law cannot produce a God honoring life. But justification by faith can. That’s the question he’s going to try and answer today. Why is it that someone who believes in Jesus and doesn’t believe that you are saved by keeping the rules and like, Paul doesn’t say, Well, I’m not gonna eat with Gentiles? Doesn’t say, like, Paul, I’m, as Paul does is I’m not going to keep the dietary restrictions, breaks away from aspects of the law, as Paul did. Why is it that that person is able to live a godly life and the person who wants so desperately to follow the law to not actually live a godly life? That’s the question in front of us today.
All right. So let me read the text to us. Then let’s just dive right in. Alright, so Galatians chapter two, verses 17 through 21 says this, but if in our endeavor to be justified in Christ, we too are found to be sinners, is Christ then a servant of sin? By so just pause? You see the question there. Here’s what’s happening. Paul’s opponents are saying to him, If you don’t believe the law needs to hang over people as this threat, if you remove that as a means of justification, and let’s remember that justification means to be right with God. That’s the simple version of it just to be right with God. If you don’t believe that, that law has to stay there as this sort of threat of like, follow me, or you won’t be right with God. If you remove that, then don’t you think people are going to just live God dishonoring lives, and Paul is speaking now he says, if in wanting to be justified by faith in Christ, not by the law, if wanting to do that, we too, were found to be sinners, is Christ then a servant of sin? Now that word we were found to be sinners, is he’s alluding back to what he said earlier, because the Jewish believers considered Gentiles to all be just categorically sinners, that was their term for them. They are categorically a god dishonoring God neglecting God, ignoring people. If you remove the law, then what you’re saying, Paul is we want to be like them. That makes Jesus a servant of sin. Do you see the objection that they’re making? says that you’re making Jesus who we also believe in but we want to keep the law to you’re making him a promoter of sin, someone who can’t help but promote sin because you’ve taken away the very law that was gonna keep people in line. Paul’s responses? Absolutely not. Certainly not. It’s one of the strong negatives Paul often use strong negatives and This is one of those times where he says, certainly not. Now he’s going to tell us why that’s the case. Okay, so why is that argument fallacious? not accurate, that they’re making verse 18, for if I rebuild what I tore down, and he means there, if I tore down the law as a means a justification, if I build it back up, and say, Well, I’ve got to use this, this is how I’m going to, this is how I’m going to live a righteous life, a God honoring life, if I build that back up after I tore it down, that would be the way I would prove to be a sinner. I’m not a sinner for not following the law, I would be a senator, if I tried to rebuild the law as my way of righteousness. His whole argument after that is gonna be I just wanna make it super simple for you. Someone might say, Well, why would you say that? Like, how can you argue that and his argument is this, the law could never produce in you, the kind of God honoring life that needed to. If you go back to the law, you’re proving, all you’re doing is proving that you never actually received from him what you needed. That’s all you’re doing, if you go back to the law, because what you need is to die, and rise, you don’t just need to get a little better and a little better and a little better, by pulling yourself up by your bootstraps, and obeying a set of rules really well, you’re never going to get it done that way. That’s his argument, what you need is to die. Then you need to rise. That’s going to be his argument as to why justification through faith in Christ produces a better life than the law. Because the law plays on your strength and ability, which is never enough. Justification by faith pulls you in to union with Christ, in His death, and in his resurrection in such a way that you are completely changed all the way down to the very depths of your heart. That’s the internal reality he wants us to see today. Now, again, it’s not a visible reality, but it’s real. I’m gonna do my level best to help you understand what it looks like to die in Christ and rise in Christ. So that we would understand how we are going to live. Then what’s going to happen is as we go further in the book in Galatians, five and six, he’s going to say now, we all know that even though this reality is true that I had died in him, and I had been raised in him, even though that’s true. I still struggle day to day to live a God honoring life. Would you agree? Yeah, I still struggle with sin patterns, different things I shouldn’t do. What he’s going to do in Galatians, five, and six is you’re gonna say to now here’s how you here’s how you apply this death and resurrection on a day by day by day basis, what he’s gonna say, keeping in step with the Spirit of God, walking in the Spirit, but you can’t walk in the Spirit until you’ve died and been raised. So we got to do that. First. We got to deal with that first. All right. So far, are we confused, or are we tracking? Yes, I’m above. All right, good. Fantastic. All right. So let’s keep going now. So that’s what we see in verse 17. And 18. That’s his initial argument. No, no, I’m not the center, you guys by still trying to follow the law. You’re the ones that are still transgressors, not me. Then we go to verse 19. So just two points today. Then like a little application point, we die to the law. How does faith in Christ produce a righteous life, a God honoring life? By causing us to die to the law, and causing us to be raised in Jesus raised in Christ? Let’s just look at the text and see what that actually means. Because it’s total church speak. Would you agree? Yeah. Galatians 2:20? How many of you could quote it before you walked in here today, I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer but how many of you actually know in its context what it means? We often quote it like it belongs on a doily or a coaster, or a little inspirational quote on the bathroom wall. But we don’t fully grasp what he’s getting at. So let’s see if we can’t do that today.
All right, so look with me them. The first thing that we have to see is that faith in Christ creates a God honoring life by causing us to die to the law. That’s our key phrase, Look back at verse 19. Let’s get our eyes in the text. He says this For through the law. I died to the law, so that I might live to God. So what does it mean? First thing we got to answer ask is What does it mean to die to the law? All right, here’s what that means. Paul, put yourself in his shoes for a second because this is essentially what every Christian has gone through. He looked at the law, and he found it to be three things compelling, controlling, and defining. When he started out, Paul Then Saul found the law, this list of rules and regulations that declared the righteousness of God and in trying to keep it he thought he would achieve good standing with God. I’m gonna keep every dietary law. I mean, Paul refers to himself in Philippians. Do you remember in Philippians, chapter three, when he says, I’m from the tribe of Benjamin, I’m a Hebrew of Hebrews, as to righteousness under the law blameless. says, I’ve filled with zeal for the law of God. So what he’s saying is, I looked at the law, and initially, I found it compelling, like it attracted me why, why does a set of rules and regulations attract us as a way to earn our righteousness with God? Why at the beginning, do we start there two reasons, I think there’s probably more, but the two that I see again and again, are the if I can keep the rules really well. Be declared righteous on that basis. One, I don’t owe God anything he owes me. Because I kept the rules. If I keep it, it’s a wage that I’ve earned. You owe it to me. Therefore I’m not in his debt. Let’s be honest, there’s a lot of us that we spend early on, we spend time trying to stay out of God’s debt, because then he could ask anything of us. If salvation was freely given, there’s nothing he cannot ask for from me. That’s scary. When we don’t recognize what a good and loving father he is to start with. So that’s one of the reasons it’s compelling. The other reason is compelling is not just that I don’t owe him anything, it’s because it reinforces my sense of my own goodness. That’s really enjoyable. It’s kind of nice to sit back and say, I’m good at keeping the rules. In fact, I’m better than you. You and her, and him. I’m not pointing at anybody in particular right now. Doesn’t it feel good to compare yourself to other people and think you’re better than them? Be honest. I’m better at this. I’m better at that. Now, listen, I recognize there’s two groups of people in here right now. I’m curious which one you are. Some of us were the kind of people that when we were told where the line was, we backed up five steps. Were like, now I’m gonna stay as far away from that as possible. How many of you that was you, you were the rule follower? Yep. Absolutely. All right. We’re the ones who think we’re better than everybody else, because we knew how to stay away from that line. Now, I also recognize that there are some of you who were like, where’s the line? There? Okay, great. Look at me over here. You thought this is fantastic. I’m gonna deal with y’all on another Sunday. All right. How many that was your your your the showman line is I’m gonna way past it. All right. God’s grace to you. All right, we both need it. We both need it, right. But today, we’re the people who are back over here on the lines over there. We’re just I mean, I’m good, I’m good at this. And the more you feel you’re good at it, the more it reinforces your own sense of self righteousness, and you feel better than other people. That’s really enjoyable. It feels good for a while until you start to see what’s really in your heart. Then it looks pretty gross. It’s really discouraging, which is gonna lead us to our next one. So here’s, here’s the thing. The law was compelling to Paul. It’s compelling to a lot of us too, because it reinforces our self righteousness. Because it makes God own me, rather than me, oh, now it’s also controlling. How many of you experience that how many of the rule followers have experienced this, where it just feels like you’re in a constant trap of trying to please other people by keeping the rules. You’re just and then that’s what not only compels you, and controls you, but it defines you what you think of yourself as really, I’m a good rule follower. I’m good at being good. You do it over and over and over. It’s a performance trap that you slip into. So what compelled us, eventually defines us. As it defines us, it enslaves us. Because we can’t get out. We got to keep performing. We got to keep doing more, we got to add to our obedience more and more and more and more. Here’s what happens. When Paul says, I died to the law, what it means is it no longer compelled me and no longer controlled me. It no longer defined to me. Well, how did he get there? He says through the law, I died to the law. There’s two ways Paul describes dying. Dying to the law, like letting go of its ability to compel him letting go of its ability to control and define him. How did he How did he get there? He says through the law, I died to the law. Then he says, For I have been crucified with Christ. He’s just grabbing two ways that he died to finding the law compelling. The first way is through the experience of the law. When he says through the law, I died to the law. Here’s what he’s saying. The longer I kept the rules, the more I realized they weren’t changing my heart. I kept them and I kept them. I kept them. I got more stringent and stricter. I got more reserved and more tightened up and more buttoned up. The more I did it, the more I looked at my heart, and I said, nothing’s changing. I got really good at doing the right stuff. I mean, I was really good at it. But every time I turned the gaze into the heart, and I said, Okay, surely, surely now the hearts getting better. I looked, and nothing had changed. All my own efforts could not get down into the heart, where I really needed them to get through the law, I died to the law. If it helps you think about this way. Imagine you’re dating someone, and the longer you date them, the more you get to know him, the more you’re like, I don’t like them. They are not for me. Through the dating, I died to the dating. That’s what he’s saying. Right? This analogy works well, because if you have a spouse, now you can compare them to Jesus, and bonus points for you, right? That’s what he’s saying. The experience of trying to follow the law crushed me. Because I saw my heart wasn’t changing. The change was all superficial was all out here. None of it got down in here. Through the law, I died to the law. Then he says, so that I might live to God. Then in verse 20, says, I have been crucified with Christ. This is the second way he dies to the law now, okay, this is the most important part of the whole sermon right? Through the Lord dies, and well, that’s the first way he died by trying to do it and failing. Then he says, Well, how else did I die to this law being compelling and defining and controlling? How can I do that? I looked at the cross of Jesus. I didn’t just I didn’t just get discouraged that I couldn’t keep it. So the experience itself crushed me. I then in that discouragement, that defeat, I looked at the cross of Jesus. When I looked at his cross, I saw something now more compelling, something that I wanted to be controlled by something that I wanted to be defined by. So it wasn’t just the negative of the law, it was the positive of the cross. Now, listen, this is antithetical to human thinking, do you look at suffering and death and say, that’s compelling to me? Because that’s exactly what Paul is saying. I have been crucified with Christ, I looked at his death on the cross. For the first time, I saw what it truly meant to embrace something that could change me down to the depths of who I am. Because when I looked at the cross of Jesus, I saw two things. I looked at his cross. Remember that whole thing about the law can never touch my heart. It just stayed this wicked, evil, gross thing, even while my actions maybe got better. I saw when I looked at the cross, the perfect heart, in the one hanging on the cross. I saw him there. I said, That’s the heart. I mean, I need that heart of righteousness. I knew intuitively when I looked at him, he’s not dying for sin of his own. He is perfect. Who does that? Who goes to that kind of cross? Who suffers that way? Only one who was perfectly righteous before God, perfectly assured of his identity in God, only him. He’s the only one the cross is supernatural. It’s worse, not just a historical reality. When you set your gaze upon the cross, it changes you. That’s exactly what Paul was saying, I looked upon the cross. I saw the heart that I needed in the one hanging there. Not only that, I saw when I gazed upon that cross, the perfect act of sacrificial love. It compelled me, and I wanted to be controlled by and I wanted to be defined by it. That’s what changed for Paul. That’s what changes for us. So here’s what happened. He says, through the law, died to the law. Then the parallel idea is, I was crucified with Christ, which means I turned my gaze away from the law. I put it on Jesus on his cross, not in his resurrection, yet, not in his powerful human life. I gazed upon Him on His cross, and in doing so I said, I want union with Him. A union is a theater logical idea of saying, we are in Him united with Him, His death is our death. Praise God, His resurrection is our resurrection. So Paul said, here’s the internal reality, to get down into the depths of my heart that I knew I needed and saw could happen in Christ. I put my gaze upon the cross. I decided that by faith in him, I would also die. Because what I saw was, I don’t just need to improve my heart, I need a new heart. I can’t have a new heart until the old one dies. So I put my heart on the cross with Jesus. I said, I will die. In your death, I will die. That’s what it means to put our faith in Jesus and be justified by faith through grace alone, it means to put our heart fully on the cross of Jesus, and say, when you died, I died. The reason you can’t live a godly life through following the law, is that your heart is not right, it is wicked. And it will never, ever be able to do what it needs to do. So your heart must be crucified. Now you want hope? What happens after your heart is crucified with Jesus? what assurance do you have that your heart won’t stay dead? What Paul say through the law, I died to the law so that I might live to God, I have been crucified with Christ. I no longer live, but what Christ lives in me, do you see what he does immediately in both those phrases, he goes to the resurrection. So the first thing that has to happen is we die to the law, both through the law and big gazing on the cross of Jesus, this internal reality of death has taken place in us now, praise God, what happens next is, as Christ was raised, I am united with Him not just in his death, but also in his white church, His resurrection, as he is raised, we are raised something new, you want to know how to live a godly life, die. The old flesh, the old heart, put it on the cross with Jesus by gazing upon him saying you are sufficient, and you alone, and no one bought you and nothing but you and I will add nothing to you. When you do that, you die. Then when you die, you will be raised not maybe not maybe no one has ever come to Jesus. Instead, I put the full weight of all my justification on you. Jesus said, that’s nice. You die, and I’m gonna leave you in the grave. It’s impossible. He says, I have been raised. If you are united with Me in a death like mine, you will be united with Me and a resurrection like mine. Here’s what’s happened to you. This is the internal Rio, this is the elephant in the box. I just got the elephant in the room analogy that I could have just been using this whole time. This is the elephant in the box. Okay. What has happened in you? This is real. This is not an idea. It’s happened. If you have put yourself on Christ, then you have been united with Him and His resurrection, which is why you can live a godly life. It’s why you can be because you are a new mind, a new heart, a new will. You are compelled by new things. You are controlled by new things. You are not what you were. You are new. It’s not just okay. Yeah. It’s kind of nice thinking. If I can just get my head around it, then maybe really all what I’ll do is I’ll be able to pull myself up by my bootstraps. You say no, the key to a righteous life, the key to a godly life is dying and rising. You have to start there. Before you ever go off, put some disciplines in place, put some boundaries in place, those are good, fine, that’s good. You shouldn’t you put discipline in your life. It’s never going to change you.
First. You have to die. Then be raised. I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live. I mean, Paul is so certain he has died. He’s a new thing that he could say. It’s not even me in in, in a very real sense. Paul says, I no longer live but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the flesh. I live by faith. What he’s saying there is because I was justified by faith now, the life I keep living every day in the flesh. I live by faith in the Son of God. I’ve given up on every other Hope. So now let me just take a few minutes because I said, we’re going to really get into the nitty gritty of this, when it comes down to Galatians, five and six. But I got like, five minutes, I want to give you a little bit more, right? Because the next question becomes, we’ve all had the experience with, okay, I get that, like, I get that. Honestly, friends, if you walked out of here today, and all you understood a little bit more of was that internal reality that has taken place in you if you’re in Christ, or if you’re not in Christ, internal router that you need to happen, I hope for some of you, what I’ve done is trap you a bit, if you will, if I can say it graciously. Because if you spent your whole life thinking that you can earn God’s love and be good enough for him, I hope that today I can just disabuse you of that notion. Just help you see that. Because one, because we all had to have that happen to us. When it did, it was it was painful at first and then it was freeing. Because we all tried for a while, didn’t we church, some of us tried when were five. Some of tried when we were ten. Some of us tried when we were 55. It just, it just ate us ate our lunch. I mean, the biggest bully ever, just everyday taking our lunch money. If I can just set you free from that. So this internal reality that has taken place, but we’ve all known the experience as Christians of saying, okay, so I want to live out of that. I know that I’ve died, I know that I’ve risen. I have union with Christ. So what do I do? I’m gonna save Galatians, five and Galatians six for when we get there. But here’s a great gift that that we have in the scriptures. Paul’s making the same argument in Romans six, seven, and eight. So let me show you a few things that he says well, how do I, how do I walk in this? How do I live this out? Because Romans six, here’s the argument. Hey, if I believe that I’m justified by faith, aren’t I just going to live a crazy life? Paul says, May it never be a strong negative. Then in the rest of Romans six, he says, and here’s why. Right? Here’s how you live differently. But then in Romans seven is a gracious gift, we get this whole chapter that is like you haven’t sometimes I do the stuff I don’t want to do. I’m kind of a mess. Sometimes I do the stuff I don’t want to do. We all resonate with it. Ten the summation of that three chapter section is in Romans chapter eight, where he goes, now let me teach you how to walk in the Spirit. Let me teach you how to walk so that the Holy Spirit is guiding and directing and dictating every part of your life. He’s going to conclude that chapter, the saying, The Spirit will perpetually point you back to the love of Christ, that you can’t be separated from. neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities, neither height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, we’ll be able to separate you from the love of God in Christ Jesus, a daily experience an expression of His love. For today, let me give you two things. Let me show you Romans six, okay. How do we apply this so that there’s, we’re drawing on the love of Christ through the Spirit. Walking in Romans 6:11 says this says so you also must consider yourselves dead to sin, and alive to God in Christ Jesus. So there’s that death and resurrection? Do you see it dead to sin? alive to God? Same idea that we’ve just been looking at in Galatians? Two, but what does he say at the beginning of that verse? What’s the first couple words? You must what? Consider yourselves, consider what’s Paul saying, Hey, you want to live a godly life? First, you got to die, then you got to rise. Okay? But what if I’m just gonna abuse that and just live any which way I want? He says, No, the first weapon at your disposal is your mind. Consider again, and again and again, consider the reality that you have died, and you have risen. Now let me make a distinction here. Because there’s a very popular notion. I can’t claim to be an expert in it. But this idea of manifesting I feel like I hear it every time I turn on the TV, somebody says, I’m gonna manifest that I’m gonna manifest that. What do they mean by that? They mean that by thinking hard enough about something, and pondering and maybe even connecting emotionally to it, that they’re going to make it come to pass. Friends, can I just share with you, you cannot think something into existence. That doesn’t work. That’s not real. That doesn’t happen. How is this different? If I’m saying consider think on what Christ has done. Here’s the difference. I’m not telling you to think something into existence. I’m telling you something already exists and you are to think about it. This reality is real. The more you consider it, the more you will find yourself changed by it. We’re going to walk in the Spirit. Consider book. Make it a daily habit to consider that when Christ died, you died. Really think about yourself that way. If you’re struggling to love somebody. Struggling to forgive somebody. Let’s just imagine that there’s some relationships in your life right now that are a struggle. You find something critical in your mind, you find yourself being gossip gossiping about somebody, you find yourself angry, and you can’t let it go. I have found that this verse Romans 6:11, if I consider myself dead to sin and alive in Christ Jesus, that it helps me. It would help you to, to say that way of behaving is no longer who I am. That way of thinking is no longer who I am.
I’m not just it’s not wishful thinking. It’s true. Do you see the difference? It’s true of you. Because not because you have changed your thinking, but because in Christ you died. In Christ you were raised. So to say, I try this week, try, say, when that thought comes into my mind about that person, and it’s full of anger and venom. I know it’s not right. Go back again and consider the death of Christ that you’re united to him in, and the resurrection of Christ, that you’re united them and then say now, what will I do? See how it changes your thoughts? See how it changes your attitudes. The next thing, verse 19, is the only only other one I’m going to point out to you today is in verse 19. When he says this, chapter six, verse 19, he says, I’m speaking in human terms, because of your natural limitations for just as you once presented your members as slaves to impurity and to lawlessness, leading to more lawlessness, more sin, basically. So now, present your members as slaves to righteousness, leading to sanctification. So the second thing Paul is going to say in Romans six is first consider think, second choose, you have a new will. What did I say earlier, when you have been raised in Christ, you have a new mind. You have a new heart, your desires, and you have a new will. Sometimes I think we think we have a new heart, and we have a new mind. But we forget that we have a new will, which means we can summon that will to choose righteousness, to present ourselves every day as a slave to righteousness, not as a slave to sin. So the second thing he’s going to say is, what does it mean to walk in the Spirit? It means to wake up in the morning and say, I’m going to choose in my will, my new will, that has been raised in Christ, I’m going to choose that I’m a slave to righteousness, not a slave to sin, think and choose. Then as it goes on in Romans seven, and in particular, Romans eight, he’s gonna say ponder the love of God in Christ on his cross. As you ponder that, you will be reminded how deeply loved you are. That’s the Spirit’s work. Set your minds on the things of the Spirit, not on the things of the flesh, which then leads to the Set your mind on the love of Christ, from which you cannot be separated. That’s the spirit doing that. So as we come to Galatians, five and six, I’m really excited, because we’re gonna talk about keeping in step with the Spirit walking in the Spirit. What does it look like for the Holy Spirit to control and dictate every aspect of our lives, which only happens when we have first died in Christ, and crucified with Him and been raised with Him? A new creation, a new thing. For his being, I hope that encourages you. I was reminded this week. Every, my wife and I first Friday of every month, we make a big ol pot of soup. By we I mean her. Make a big ol pot of soup. We invite all our neighbors over and we tell people come for five minutes or come for two hours. If you want a great way to get to know your neighbors. This was her idea. It’s been so fun. We’ve been doing it for a couple years. We have 30 to 40 folks in our house every first Friday of the month. We just sit and talk. You sit have great conversation and neighbors get to know neighbors that didn’t know each other before. It’s a blast. We love it. Great opportunities show the love of Jesus with our actions and with our words. And so it’s been so fun in this last Friday was in I was talking with a neighbor and he shared with me 31 years he is was at this company and he shared with me I’d never heard him talk about this before. He was sharing with me. How sort of antithetical to gospel values. The company where he was working was I mean, it was just aggressive and abusive and angry and gossipy and backbiting. I just remembered I, here’s what I thought. After talking for maybe 30 minutes and just hearing about this. He’s retired now. He just said, he said it was I mean, it was just a defeating place. Just a defeating place. You know what it made me realize and remember made me remember this. Many of you are coming here today. You just like it’s like the world tried to beat the Jesus out of you all week long. You might some of you praise God you might be in really wonderful work environments and home and environments I hope, man, praise God. If you are, that’s awesome. Some of you may have felt like you just barely crawled back in here. This has to be a place of hope. This has to be a place to be re energized. Faith has to be a place to experience the love of God through one another, and through His Word and through knowing that you’re encountering him when you come here, just made me want to double down on this being a place of rest for you. That you would come in and just feel like, okay, God filled me back up, I can go back out again. I can go back out again. So here’s what I hope today, as you’re hearing about these internal realities, I hope you know how real they are, and that it reinvigorates you. Then it fills you with faith. Because I’m talking about something supernatural. The gods were testifies to, it’s not my opinion, that the gods were testifies to. It’s really happened inside you. It’s really taken place. I hope that fills you with hope, and courage, and peace. Because you have been crucified with Christ, justified not by the works of the law, but by faith in Him. Having been crucified with Him, He has raised you, you are new. But you’re hoping that you don’t have to earn it, not to be the smartest person in the room to figure it out. yield yourself to Him, He will unpack the mysteries of that to you, day by day, far better than a human preacher can.
Let’s pray together which is you know, that my heart is for my people. I love them so much. I want for them to walk in the power of the Spirit and I just ask that you would take we we have done our best now Lord, before you, I think me to proclaim what your Word says and my family to receive what your word says we have tried to shape our minds around it and and we have determined to hear it. But now would you in the power of Your Spirit take it and cause it to sink in the what only you can do. If there anyway is a sense in us that this this pondering of your death and resurrection and our union with you in it is sort of old hat or you know, make it fresh again today. Work on power of your spirit. Make it fresh. I’d pray today for our friends who don’t know you they joined us here today they’re hearing this plane but I asked it today would be the day that they would hear and recognize that they you have something they need and that today will be the day of freedom for them free from striving and trying to earn it be good enough. We just feel that way because we’ve tried that we’ve tried it doesn’t work. So we pray for our friends that they will perhaps that lands on them today both pausing to stop wanting to do it but also to turn is your you will give peace and salvation. Soften our hearts with Jesus these new hearts that you’ve given us making soft and tender every day. Right Jesus in the stand and worship together shall we have to conclude our time