Don’t Yield

Galatians 2:1-5

Then after fourteen years I went up again to Jerusalem with Barnabas, and also took Titus with me. 2 And I went up by revelation, and communicated to them that gospel which I preach among the Gentiles, but privately to those who were of reputation, lest by any means I might run, or had run, in vain. 3 Yet not even Titus who was with me, being a Greek, was compelled to be circumcised. 4 And this occurred because of false brethren secretly brought in (who came in by stealth to spy out our liberty which we have in Christ Jesus, that they might bring us into bondage), 5 to whom we did not yield submission even for an hour, that the truth of the gospel might continue with you.

Religious people are confounded by radical grace.  That’s one reason why it is not easy to find the true gospel of grace being preached.  People get uncomfortable with it and water it down. Watered-down grace isn’t the gospel.  

Radical grace is so freeing, it goes against every religious or man-made system.  Whether at church or in business or even in recreation, everything has rules and measurements that are used to gauge performance and compare results.  Religious people love this because rules and procedures enable comparison to others – if you are struggling, then I can feel better about myself.

Living in that kind of religious system is bondage.  If we allow others to enslave us according to their opinions, then we are submitting to that from which Christ died to free us.  Paul saw these folks coming and refused to yield submission. He had just come out of a heavy, religious system and there was no way that he was going back after experiencing radical grace.  And neither should we.

Braving grace means being prepared to stand firm in the face of religious opposition, whether from other people or from our own thoughts.  It doesn’t mean flaunting freedom to those who have not understood. Braving grace is done gracefully. Remember from 1 Corinthians 13 that love is not puffed up and does not seek its own.  When living out grace to the consternation of religion, we must do so with humility and a desire that the message of freedom in Christ would break through the religious veil so that others can become free.

A thorough study of a book like Galatians should prepare us to explain grace well.  Let the true gospel message so infuse you that when challenged, you are ready with an answer in every season.  Paul explains his refusal to yield in verse five – “that the truth of the gospel might continue with you.” If radical grace is to continue, we must be vigilant against religious intrusion.  Braving grace demands that we don’t yield.

Day 6

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