Galatians 3:25-29: New Familia in Christ

24 Aug

“There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.”
-Galatians 3:28

Timothy George, in his commentary on Galatians, wrote:

     “Race, money, and sex are the primal powers in human life.  No one of them is inherently evil; rather, they are the stuff of which life
itself is made…Yet each of these spheres of human creativity has become degraded and soiled through the perversity of sin.
Nationally and ethnicity have been corrupted by pride, material blessing by greed, and sexuality by lust.”

Even in Paul’s time, race and culture were issues that fueled division and caused distortions of the Gospel.  Today, we see cultural pride play out in the unwillingness to reach out to, advocate on behalf of, and partner with those who come from different nationalities, ethnic backgrounds or cultures.  Or, we ignore those who are different and assume they will take care of themselves.

All too often we see ourselves and our ways as best, and thus, everyone else should conform to these ways.  The problem is when this leads to a lack of graciousness and a distortion of what it means to know and worship God.  This is what happened to the Jewish Christians who tried to explain that the Galatian believers must accept Jewish cultural customs and the Law in order to truly be counted as children of God and a part of the true Israel.  Today, we become stubborn to change and are unwilling to allow for differences along ethnic/cultural lines.  If people are willing to come to us and do things our way, they are welcomed and embraced as brothers and sisters in Christ.  How sad this is!

It is important for us to remember that we are saved by grace alone, through faith alone in Christ alone. But not only this, we are all one in Christ.  That is, regardless of race, rank or gender, we are all equal in Christ, and a part of a new family; a family in which we are children of God and brothers and sisters in Christ.  This family is one of many cultures, races and ethnic groups; as many as are under the sun.  And because of this, we as a family have an obligation to love one another and to embrace each other across these lines that so often divide.  Yet, what a beautiful and good work we have been given!  What a privilege it is to see the Gospel go forth, impacting people around the world that enable them to love God and love others in ways that reflect their rich cultures.

Because of this, we are going to see things done differently than how we are used to seeing them done.  But that does not make them wrong.  That is a wonderful thing to know!  We have been freed from the slavery of cultural pride, and are set free in Christ to worship and glorify God in a variety of ways according to ones culture.  We must have a humble willingness to embrace these differences while rejoicing in the fact that we are one in Christ our King, brothers and sisters, children of God; a new familia.

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One Response to “Galatians 3:25-29: New Familia in Christ”

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  1. Resources for Galatians 3:25 - 29 - February 19, 2012

    […] 1Galatians 3:25-29: New Familia in Christ « Surpassing Joy SUBMIT […]

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