Summary: Paul explains the doctrine of adoption to the Galatians.


Text: Galatians 4:1 – 7


• Before and after commercials: weight loss, wrinkle cream, exercise equipment, teeth whitening

• Galatians were Gentile believers that had given lives to the Lord, but had been falsely taught that they had to observe Jewish laws and customs to be saved

• Paul gives them a snapshot of their lives before Christ and after Christ

I. Life before Christ

A. The Jews (heirs) were like underage children (vv. 1, 2)

• Roman children had the same rights and privileges as slaves

• One day they would inherit the entire estate, but while they were children, they were kept from their father, responsible to a tutor, and their property was overseen by a trustee

• Holli is my heir, but she does not have the authority to sign legal documents in my name, use my checking account, drive my car

B. Just as Roman children had the same rights and privileges of slaves, the Jews were slaves to the Law (v. 3)

• The Law told them what they should do, but did not give them the ability to do it

Galatians 3:24, 25

• Galatians were Gentiles, not slaves to the law, but slaves to their worldly religion and fleshly desires

• Maybe you believe that living the 10 commandments will get you to Heaven; problem is you can’t live them (false witness = lying)

• Maybe you believe that doing more good than bad will get you to Heaven; problem is you never know how much good you have to do (there is none good, no not one)

• Some believe that going to church, praying, reading Bible, and working in church will get you to Heaven; problem is, how much is enough?

• The Jews were slaves to religion, and religion is not good enough to get you to Heaven

II. Life after Christ

A. God sent His only begotten Son at the perfect time (v. 4)

• The Jews, Greeks, and Romans all had a time when a child went through a ceremony and became an adult, the fullness of time

• The Jews were looking for a Messiah, the Romans had conquered the world and imposed peace, the Romans had built roads throughout the empire for easy travel

• Jesus was entirely God, but entirely human at the same time

• He was born a Jew, and lived under the Law without ever breaking the Law

B. God’s Son came to pay the price for our freedom and to take our place (v. 5a)

• Slaves had to be bought before they could be freed

• The price that sin required was death

Genesis 2:17 “But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.”

Exodus 21:12, 15 – 17 “He that smiteth a man, so that he die, shall be surely put to death. And he that smiteth his father, or his mother, shall be surely put to death. And he that stealeth a man, and selleth him, or if he be found in his hand, he shall surely be put to death. And he that curseth his father, or his mother, shall surely be put to death.”

Exodus 22:18 – 20 “Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live. Whosoever lieth with a beast shall surely be put to death. He that sacrificeth unto any god, save unto the Lord only, he shall be utterly destroyed.

Romans 6:23 “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”

• As long as you lived, you were guilty of breaking the law, and death was required

Romans 7:1 – 6

• Jesus took your place and paid your sin debt so that you could go free

C. God offers you the opportunity to become one of his adopted children (v. 5b)

• The Jews did not practice adoption; the Romans adopted adults

• An adopted person in the Roman system would take the name of his new family, and would immediately receive the rights and privileges of being an adult in the family

• Roman law required that the one adopted was an independent adult, able to decide for himself if he was to accept the adoption

• According to the Roman law, the adopted person became a new person, and was regarded as being born again into a new family

2 Corinthians 5:17 “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.”

• The price has been paid to set you free; you have been given the right to choose to accept that payment and become the adopted son or daughter of God

Copy Sermon to Clipboard with PRO Download Sermon with PRO
Talk about it...

Nobody has commented yet. Be the first!

Join the discussion