GALATIANS = US: Galatians 1:1-5

BIG IDEA

Paul doesn’t waste any time in his letter to the churches of Galatia. They had come under attack from false teachers and were being persuaded to desert the true gospelwhat Jesus did on the cross is totally sufficient to save us—for a false gospelwe have to add to what Jesus did with at least some of our works. Paul makes sure these churches know that he is not speaking on his own terms; rather, he is speaking exactly what Jesus told him face-to-face. He reminds them (and us!) that Jesus + Nothing = Everything. What Jesus did on the cross is totally sufficient to make us acceptable before God. In fact, Paul mentions four distinct characteristics of the cross:

1. The willingness of Jesus’ cross—”He gave himself…”
2. The purpose of Jesus’ cross—”He gave himself for our sins…” 
3. The effect of Jesus’ cross—”He gave himself for our sins to deliver us from the present evil age…”
4. The origin of Jesus’ cross—”He gave himself for our sins to deliver us from the present evil age, according to the will of God our Father, to whom be the glory forever and ever. Amen.” 

SCRIPTURE

Galatians 1:1-5 Paul, an apostle—not from men nor through man, but through Jesus Christ and God the Father, who raised him from the dead— and all the brothers who are with me,

To the churches of Galatia:

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, who gave himself for our sins to deliver us from the present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father, to whom be the glory forever and ever. Amen.

DISCUSSION 

1. Was there anything from the sermon, the big idea, or Galatians 1:1-5 that stood out to you, challenged you, or confused you?

Paul makes sure these churches know that he is not speaking on his own terms; rather, he is speaking exactly what Jesus told him face-to-face.

2. When do you find it hardest to accept apostolic New Testament teaching? Why?

Paul reminds them (and us!) that Jesus + Nothing = Everything. What Jesus did on the cross is totally sufficient to make us acceptable before God.

3. How would you explain the gospel to someone who asked you today what you believe?

4. What “something” have you been tempted to look to in order to make you acceptable to God? (i.e. moral performance, success in job.)

In fact, Paul mentions four distinct characteristics of the cross:

1. The willingness of Jesus’ cross—”He gave himself…”
2. The purpose of Jesus’ cross—”He gave himself for our sins…” 
3. The effect of Jesus’ cross—”He gave himself for our sins to deliver us from the present evil age…”
4. The origin of Jesus’ cross—”He gave himself for our sins to deliver us from the present evil age, according to the will of God our Father, to whom be the glory forever and ever. Amen.” 

5. Which of these four characteristics of the cross most stand out to you and why? Why is it crucial to realize that Paul mentions absolutely nothing that we do in verses 1-5 when he summarizes the gospel?

GOOD WORD 

The gospel keeps getting better and better! Jesus didn’t just die to stop the death sentence that was hanging over us; he died also to rescue us from the prison of our sin. So we would have new life in Him, forever. Joy to us, glory to God.

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