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Galatians, Chapter Five, Lesson Three

WALKING BY THE SPIRIT           Page 2
V.13 (Cont'd.)

** After reminding them of their freedom, what caution does he now offer to the beloved brethren?

"...do not turn your freedom into an opportunity for the flesh..."

** What does that mean?

Knowing that Jesus Christ has made the payment for your sin and given you the free gifts of His righteousness and eternal life, don't take those gifts for granted by living a life that caters to every fleshly impulse. Let's look together at similar cautions from the word of God on this subject:

cf. 1Peter 2:16 - "...do not use your freedom as a covering for evil..."

1Peter 2:11 - "...fleshly lusts, which wage war against the soul."

Rom. 13:13-14 - "...make no provision for the flesh in regard to its lusts."

Now back in Galatians 5:13...

** Our flesh (or sinful desire) wants to master us, but we must be victorious over it! What alternative does Paul give to us in the place of feeding the flesh?

"...through love serve one another..." We can serve both the saved and the unsaved around us, instead of feeding our own sinful desires! cf. Ephesians 5:18 and 21 [w/Luke 6:11] (saved) and 1Corinthians 9:19 (unsaved).

V.14 ** By now you might well expect the Judaizers to be saying, "With all of this freedom in Christ, there never was any use for the Law!" How does Paul address that argument?

Paul is not ignoring the Law, in fact he is desiring for the intent of the Law to be fulfilled.
"For the whole Law is fulfilled in one word..." That is important to Paul, he repeats it again in Galatians 6:2 and again to the Romans in 13:8 & 10.

Our Lord also addresses the importance of the Law in His Sermon on the Mount.
cf. Matthew 5:17-18

** Well then, if the Law is important, how is it fulfilled in our lives according to verse 14?

By loving your neighbor as yourself! With our preoccupation for the needs of others, our hearts are turned away from the desires of our own flesh while at the same time we are fulfilling the intent of the Law of God. cf. Philippians 2:3-4

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