I'm going to give this Scripture to you from The New  King James Version and then out of The Message  Bible.   Galatians 3:1-5 

NKJV ... O foolish Galatians!  Who has bewitched you that you should not obey the Truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed among us as crucified?  Did you receive the Spirit by the works of the Law ... or by the hearing of faith?  Are you so foolish?  Having begun in the Spirit, are you now being made perfect by the flesh?  Have you suffered so many things in vain ... if indeed it was in vain?  Therefore He Who supplies the Spirit to you and works miracles among you ... does He do it by the works of the Law or by the hearing of faith?  

The Message ... You crazy Galatians!  Did someone put a hex on you?  Have you taken leave of your senses?  Something crazy has happened, for it's obvious that you no longer have the crucified Jesus in clear focus in your lives. His sacrifice on the Cross was certainly set before you clearly enough.  Let me put this question to you: how did your new life begin?  Was it by working your heads off to please God?  Or was it by responding to God's Message to you?  Are you going to continue this craziness?  For only crazy people would think that they could complete in their own efforts by what was begun by God.  If you weren't smart enough or strong enough to begin it, how do you suppose you could perfect it?  Did you go through this whole painful learning process for nothing?  It is not yet a total loss, but it certainly will be if you keep this up. 

The Galatians had fallen into the trap of trying to work their salvation out in their natural flesh ... their soulish realm.  They had entered into the New Covenant by faith in Christ, but they'd listened to false teachers and began to try to establish their own righteousness by observing ceremonial law. 

Let us not fall into the same trap as the Galatians, for our salvation is a gift, not something that we have to work for and earn.  We have to watch what we hear (does it line up with what the Word says?) But then, we must know what the Word of God says!

Reverend Robert W. & Mary C. Butler  


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