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May 3 Sermon Notes & Quotes
“Sons, Not Slaves”
Galatians 3:23-4:7

Sermon Outline

  • Our as Slaves
  • Our as Sons

Our Bondage as Slaves

  • Bondage: The Guardianship of the Law (Galatians 3:23)
  • Bondage: The Elementary Principles of the World (Galatians 4:3)
  • Judaism without is bondage, just as Paganism without is bondage.

Our Adoption as Sons

  • Our Adoption is “in Christ.” In Christ, Jews/Gentiles, Slaves/Free, Males/Females all enjoy access to God and are also promised a inheritance (Galatians 3:28).
  • The of Our Adoption
  • The of Our Adoption

Questions for Further Reflection

  • In your day to day life, do you think about yourself as a son or daughter of the Most High? Why or why not?
  • Please read Gal. 3:26 and consider this question: does God relate to everyone as Father?
    • Answer: No, God does not relate to everyone as Father. Only those who possess faith in Jesus Christ have intimate access to God as Father. Paul stresses that our adoption is “in Christ Jesus” in Galatians 3:26. Only those who are “in Christ” possess the Spirit of Christ in their hearts and are therefore enabled to call out to God as “Abba, Father” (Galatians 4:6).

Exegetical Quotes on the Text of Galatians

  • “For all the basic differences between Judaism and paganism, both involved subjection to the same elemental forces. This is an astonishing statement for a former Pharisee to make, yet Paul makes it – not as an exaggeration in the heat of an argument but as the deliberate expression of a carefully thought out position” (Bruce, Galatians in NIGTC, 202-203).
  • “What is astonishing is that Paul equates subjection to Torah with paganism. One can only imagine the shock the Pauline assertion would have given the Judaizers” (Schreiner, Galatians, 279).
  • Regarding Galatians 3:28, Schreiner writes, “Here we have one of Paul’s most famous statements” (Schreiner, Galatians, 257).
  • “The profound truth of Roman adoption was that the adoptee was taken out of his previous state and placed in a new relationship of son to his new father, his new paterfamilias. All his old debts were cancelled, and in effect the adoptee started a new life as part of his new family” (Francis Lyall, Slaves, Citizens, and Sons: Legal Metaphors in the Epistles, 83).

Theological Quotes on our Adoption in Christ

  • “Our understanding of Christianity cannot be better than our grasp of adoption” (J. I. Packer, Knowing God, 201). Packer also wrote, “If you want to judge how well a person understands Christianity, find out how much he makes of the thought of being God’s child, and having God as his Father. If this is not the thought that prompts and controls his worship and prayers and whole outlook on life, it means that he does not understand Christianity very well at all.”
  • “See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are” (1 John 3:1).
  • “To all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— 13children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God” (John 1:12-13).
  • “The only person who dares wake up a king at 3:00 AM for a glass of water is a child. We have that kind of access” (Tim Keller; Note that this is one of Pastor Jeremy’s all-time favorite lines to quote, so please plan on hearing this lots and lots of times.)