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Summary: A simple Bible study in Galatians 4, looking at our adoption into God's family, and freedom from bondage.

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GREAT GRACE & FREEDOM #8: ADOPTION AND FREEDOM FROM BONDAGE

OPENING QUOTE: “One of the tragedies of legalism is that it gives the appearance of spiritual maturity when, in reality, it leads the believer back into a “second childhood” of Christian experience.” (Warren Wiersbe, Be Free).

1. PAUL EXPLAINS THEIR ADOPTION: (Gal. 4:1-7).

a) WHAT WE WERE: CHILDREN IN BONDAGE:

1 Think of it this way. If a father dies and leaves great wealth for his young children, those children are not much better off than slaves until they grow up, even though they actually own everything their father had. 2 They have to obey their guardians until they reach whatever age their father set. 3 And that's the way it was with us before Christ came. We were slaves to the spiritual powers of this world.

• Before becoming a Christian, we were like a slave with no access to God’s blessings.

b) WHAT GOD DID: REDEEMED US:

4 But when the right time came, God sent his Son, born of a woman, subject to the law. 5 God sent him to buy freedom for us who were slaves to the law, so that he could adopt us as his very own children.

• This is one of the greatest blessings of being a Christian – adopted into God’s family!

c) WHAT WE ARE: SONS AND HEIRS:

6 And because you Gentiles have become his children, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, and now you can call God your dear Father. 7 Now you are no longer a slave but God's own child. And since you are his child, everything he has belongs to you.

• We are heirs to all of the blessings of God – forgiveness, healing, provision, protection!

2. PAUL LAMENTS THEIR REGRESSION: (Gal. 4:8-11).

8 Before you Gentiles knew God, you were slaves to so-called gods that do not even exist. 9 And now that you have found God (or should I say, now that God has found you), why do you want to go back again and become slaves once more to the weak and useless spiritual powers of this world? 10 You are trying to find favor with God by what you do or don't do on certain days or months or seasons or years. 11 I fear for you. I am afraid that all my hard work for you was worth nothing.

• He is said that they’ve gone back to the law to try to earn God’s love and favour.

3. PAUL SEEKS THEIR AFFECTION: (Gal. 4:12-18).

12 Dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to live as I do in freedom from these things, for I have become like you Gentiles were -- free from the law. You did not mistreat me when I first preached to you. 13 Surely you remember that I was sick when I first brought you the Good News of Christ. 14 But even though my sickness was revolting to you, you did not reject me and turn me away. No, you took me in and cared for me as though I were an angel from God or even Christ Jesus himself. 15 Where is that joyful spirit we felt together then? In those days, I know you would gladly have taken out your own eyes and given them to me if it had been possible. 16 Have I now become your enemy because I am telling you the truth? 17 Those false teachers who are so anxious to win your favor are not doing it for your good. They are trying to shut you off from me so that you will pay more attention to them. 18 Now it's wonderful if you are eager to do good, and especially when I am not with you.


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