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Summary: The perfection of the promise, the precedence of the promise and the priviledge of the promise

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The Promise

This message was preached by Rev Michael Brown student pastor of Calvary Assembly of God

as part of a series on Galatians

Introduction

Have you ever made a promise to someone? Have you ever made a promise that you couldn’t keep? People nowadays throw around the word “promise” like it’s no big deal. Kids always abuse the word “I promise!” Hours after LeBron James chose to leave Cleveland and sign with the Miami Heat, the Cavaliers majority owner Dan Gilbert wrote a letter to Cleveland’s fans on the team’s website. Part of it read:

In the meantime, I want to make one statement to you tonight:

"I PERSONALLY GUARANTEE THAT THE CLEVELAND CAVALIERS WILL WIN AN NBA CHAMPIONSHIP BEFORE THE SELF-TITLED FORMER ‘KING’ WINS ONE"

You can take it to the bank.

He promised the fans a championship before Miami. The things some people promise are ridiculous. So, we need to disassociate ourselves from failed promises when we view God. God ALWAYS keeps his promises. We are going to take a look at a promise that God made to Abraham and then we’ll see how it applies to our lives.

Genesis 15:1-6

Body

I. The Perfection of the Promise

A. Galatians 3:1-5

B. Paul begins Galatians 3 by reproving the Galatians

C. He tells them they’re foolish and that they’ve been bewitched

D. He reminds them that he had publicly portrayed Jesus Christ crucified to them

E. They had been taught the truth of Gospel

F. They had not only been told that Christ died for them in order to justify them by faith, but it had been portrayed to them

G. They learned it and understood

H. But, now, for whatever reason, they were seeking justification by works

I. He brings up a great question

J. My paraphrase: At salvation you knew that you received the Spirit through faith and not by works, why then do you think that you maintain that salvation or perfect the promise through works and not faith?

K. We must ask ourselves this same question

L. Like Paul had done with the Galatians, Pastor has preached about justification by faith vs. justification by works

M. He has clearly portrayed the truth of the Gospel

N. Many here may have been working through the truth that you are saved by faith and not by works in your lives

O. We know that the law was never intended to be used as a form of justification; instead, it was intended to show us how sinful we are so that we will look to the cross

P. Unfortunately, however, a lot of Christians I know have accepted their salvation being through faith but for some reason think they perfect it through works

Q. We are continuously being made perfect not through our works, but through our faith – The Perfection of the Promise

R. In the same way that we’ve come to know Christ by faith, we continue in Christ by faith

S. Hopefully, we all agree here that we can never be saved by our good deeds

T. Why is it then that we are quick to believe that we can lose our salvation by our bad deeds

U. Illustration of marriage relationship

V. Either it’s by works or it’s by faith…not both

W. This is what Paul was trying to point out through his question in verse 2

X. Yes, we must change our lives and do our best to live for God; after all faith without works is dead

Y. But I feel like too many people envision God erasing our name from the Lamb’s Book of Life each time we sin

Z. If you’re living a lifestyle of sin, then you need to rededicate your heart to God, but if you make a mistake, you have not lost your salvation

AA. We are saved by God’s grace and mercy

BB. We are perfected by his promise and not by our own self-righteousness

II. The Precedence of the Promise

A. What came first, the chicken or the egg?

B. A lot of people believe that the law came first and that God’s promise came much later through the life of Jesus Christ

C. But as we already read in Genesis in the beginning and as we can read in this chapter, the promise came before the law

D. Read Galatians 3:6-9; 15-18

E. God gave the inheritance to Abraham by a promise, not through the law

F. We need to get out of our minds this idea that Jesus came and changed the law and brought a promise

G. Jesus fulfilled the promise that God made long before the law ever existed

H. Read Galatians 3:13

I. Jesus was the fulfillment of the promise which was made before the law

J. God always intended us to be justified through faith and not by works

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