Back where we belong
God, I come to You as our Father—and am amazed that You take such delight in us as Your children.
Read GALATIANS 3:23—4:7
 Before the coming of this faith, we were held in custody under the law, locked up until the faith that was to come would be revealed.  So the law was our guardian until Christ came that we might be justified by faith.  Now that this faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian.  So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith,  for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ.  There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.  If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.  What I am saying is that as long as an heir is underage, he is no different from a slave, although he owns the whole estate.  The heir is subject to guardians and trustees until the time set by his father.  So also, when we were underage, we were in slavery under the elemental spiritual forces of the world.  But when the set time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law,  to redeem those under the law, that we might receive adoption to sonship.  Because you are his sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, “Abba, Father.”  So you are no longer a slave, but God’s child; and since you are his child, God has made you also an heir. Scripture taken from the THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION, NIV Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
ReflectWhy was the law given?
Paul remembers how, as a boy, he was always accompanied by his tutor, who was also his minder. He likens it to being a prisoner! So it is, he says, with God’s Law, which guides and restrains us until we can be entrusted with adult freedoms. But Paul’s real point is more wonderful still—and has nothing to do with teachers or prisons. The coming of Jesus has restored us lost and fallen humans to our true status as children and heirs of God. The Jews were privileged to have God’s Law to guide them—but now, in Christ, they are free. Sensationally, the non-Jews (Gentiles) have now received the same status and freedom through having a faith like Abraham, who believed God before there was the Law. The consequences of becoming God’s children are far-reaching. Through Christ, we belong together as his family, regardless of all our differences of race, gender, culture and social status. Paul’s relentless logic presents us with a vision of mutual belonging and unity which continues to challenge and liberate us to this day.
Ask God to show you where your pride or prejudices are hindering your relationships, especially in the church.
Brother and Friend, thank You that You became one of us that we may all know the dignity of being children of God.
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