At the end of a series, I find it helpful to reflect back on some of the things learned over the course of several months. It took 13 sermons to preach through the 6 chapters of Galatians, a series which began on June 9th. One of the ways I like to reflect on a book is to look back on the Big Ideas of each sermon, which reminds us of some of the main themes found in each passage (keep in mind: the Big Idea of the entire series was Walk by the Spirit in freedom from the flesh):
1:1-10 – Preach only the one true Gospel of Jesus Christ
1:11-24 – Good testimonies glorify God through the Gospel
2:1-14 – Preserve the truth of the Gospel
2:15-21 – Trust Christ’s sufficiency for your salvation
3:1-14 – Scripture is clear: works never have—and never will—save
3:15-25 – The Law points lawbreakers to Jesus
3:26–4:7 – Jesus redeems us from slavery, making us heirs as sons
4:8-20 – Display godly love through sincere concern and hard truth
4:21-31 – Cast out works-based systems that enslave
5:1-15 – Legalistic living leads to an unloving lifestyle
5:16-24 – Walk by the Spirit in freedom from the flesh
5:25–6:10 – Spiritual believers sow good fruit for eternal rewards
6:11-18 – Boast only in the cross of Jesus Christ!
When we read through this list of 13 Big Ideas, one common theme stands out: Gospel. The first three sermons had the word explicitly in the theme. The next four had the idea implicit in the Big Idea. It’s clear that Galatians is all about preaching the one true Gospel of Jesus Christ.
As a result of that Gospel, believers are filled with the Holy Spirit and set free from bondage to the flesh. This enables us to live a life according to God’s Word, sowing fruit that leads to eternal rewards.
The epistle of Galatians follows a very logical progression of thought, from one paragraph to the next. But all these themes are unified in the Gospel and applied to the Spirit-filled believer.
My hope is that by preaching Galatians, believers will have a deeper appreciation of their salvation and their call to live spiritual lives. My prayer is that unbelievers will better understand what it means to be saved by grace and that they will commit their lives to Jesus Christ and abandon a works-based system of salvation. To God be the glory for the beautiful Gospel that is ours in Christ!