Summary: How to get right with God. Why works does not work.
Text: Galatians 2:1-21
Title: How to get right with God.
Of all the world’s great discoveries Galatians 2 records the greatest discovery of them all –
“How a person gets right with God”.
For Jesus said, “What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world and loses his soul.”
This discovery that we find in Galatians 2 opposed what most people had and still believed to be the way to get right with God.
Before this great discovery told us in Galatians 2- people were certain that the only way to get right with God was by obeying the law.
This old belief still has a lot of supporters today even in the church!
How does a person get right with God?
….by being a good person
…by doing lots of good things
Before we look at the proper way a person gets right with God I think it’s important to understand why obeying the Law/being a good person/doing lots of good things is not the right way to get right with God- especially because most people are still convinced it does?
When a person believes that being a good person makes you right with God 3 things will end up happening to you.
The first thing that will happen to you is that you will end up living in fear.
1. You will end up living in Fear (v1-2)
“Fourteen years later I went up again to Jerusalem, this time with Barnabas. I took Titus along also. I went in response to a revelation and set before them the gospel that I preach among the Gentiles. But I did this privately to those who seem to be leaders, for fear that I was running or had run my race in vain.” (v1-2)
“But I did this privately to those who seem to be leaders, for fear that I was running or had run my race in vain.” (v1-2)
Notice that Paul did not publicly set before the leaders the gospel he preached to the Gentiles? Instead Paul insisted on doing it privately.
And we know why...For fear I was running or had run my race in vain.
The word vain used here means failing to achieve its end
For fear I was running or had run my race failing to achieve its end
The reason Paul was full of fear was because having grown up believing a person got right with God only by obeying the law he now found himself preaching a different way. Here is why you will end up living in fear if you believe a person can only get right with God by obeying the law/being a good person.
By knowing just how good the Bible says a person needs to be in order to get right with God.
“Be perfect just as your heavenly father is perfect.”
When the standard is perfection then the fear is we have all fallen short.
When the standard is perfection we can’t be good enough and that is a very fearful thing!
You will end up living your life in fear
If you believe being a good person makes you right with God then the second thing that will happen to you is that…
2.You will end up living in Slavery
“Yet not even Titus, who was with me, was compelled to be circumcised, even though he was a Greek. This matter arose because some false brothers had infiltrated our ranks to spy on the freedom we have in Christ Jesus and to make us slaves.” V4)
Literally there were people who followed Paul and spied on Paul 24 hours of the day in order to make sure he was obeying the Law.
Missionaries tell us that in some parts of the world this still actually happens
To Paul having someone spy on him was like a form of slavery
A. You are not going to like what I am about to say...
One of the purposes of the law is to spy on us. At this very moment the law of God is spying on you and me. The law of God knows everything you are thinking/ everything you are doing 24 hours of the day- 365 days of the year! Everything. You can never run away to a place where the law of God can’t find and spy on you. You can’t close the door and keep the law of God out! It sees everything. It knows everything and it records everything!
For the Bible says in Rev 20:12 that everything you and I do wrong is recorded in a book. Things you would never want anyone knowing are written in that book. Knowing all this is enslaving!
1.You will end up living in fear
2.You will end up living in slavery