Returning to Slavery
Daily Bible Reading – Deuteronomy 22-24; Galatians 4
Today’s Key Passage – Galatians 4:1-9
A couple of days ago when we read Galatians 1, we learned about the Judaizers’ attempts to lead the churches in Galatia astray with a false Gospel. The Judaizers were trying to convince the Galatians that they needed to follow Jewish laws in order to be saved, instead of relying on Christ’s sacrifice and the grace of God. Paul was very concerned for the Galatians and was pained by the fact that they were being led astray from the true Gospel. In today’s key passage, Paul explains to the Galatians what they were really doing by listening to the Judaizers – they were returning to a life of slavery. He explains that before they turned to God, the Galatians lived as slaves. They were slaves to sin, slaves to temptation, and slaves to the pressures of this world. Paul asks the Galatians, “But now that you know God—or rather are known by God—how is it that you are turning back to those weak and miserable principles? Do you wish to be enslaved by them all over again?”
Before we were saved, we were all slaves. We were slaves to our sinful desires and our sinful ways. We were slaves to trying to live up to the expectations of others. We were slaves to the ways of the world. When we found Christ, however, that bondage was broken. The chains that held us were broken and we were finally free. We rejoiced in that freedom of knowing that we were saved. We rejoiced in knowing that our eternal salvation was secured by the cross of Christ. Sadly, for many Christians, after a period of time that joy begins to fade. When the pressures of the world begin to overwhelm them, the passion they once felt for God starts to dwindle. At best, they become lukewarm Christians. At worst, they backslide completely. Some are led astray by bad teaching. Others are led astray by a lack of time or energy that comes from not making God the number one priority in life (in other words, they find that they simply “do not have time” to be a passionate follower of Christ). Still others are led astray by temptations to sin or by guilt over past sins. When we feel the pressures coming on – the pressures to be led astray from God – we must remember exactly what we would be returning to if we allow ourselves to stray. We would be returning to slavery. We would be giving up the very freedom that Christ’s sacrifice bought for us. In 2 Peter 2:20-21, the Apostle Peter writes, “If they have escaped the corruption of the world by knowing our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and are again entangled in it and overcome, they are worse off at the end than they were at the beginning. It would have been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than to have known it and then to turn their backs on the sacred command that was passed on to them.” Once we have been saved, we should do everything we can to keep that fire that once burned so brilliantly for God. We cannot allow anything to lessen that fire or put it out. Do you remember how you felt toward God the day you were saved? Do you remember that passion you felt? Do you remember that fire? Do you still feel that way toward Him? Do not allow the pressures of this world to make you a slave again. Stay strong in your faith through prayer, keep your fire burning, and maintain your freedom. Jesus paid a hefty price for that freedom. Do not allow His sacrifice to go to waste in your life.
During your Bible reading today, what “key passages” stood out to you? Leave a comment below to share what God is showing you about His Word today.
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May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with you today.
Posted on March 13, 2014, in 09 - Galatians and tagged Backsliding, Bible, Christ, Christian, Daily Bible, Daily Devotional, Epistle to the Galatians, Galatia, Galatians, God, Jesus, Judaizers, Paul, Religion, Sin, Temptation. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.