Galatians 3:1-14 … Paul’s personal testimony of salvation and ministry (Galatians 1 and 2) is completed and now the preaching of doctrine begins. Concern is expressed immediately for the Galatians to recognize the source of the Holy Spirit. He (the Holy Spirit) is a person and is imparted to believers by God. To prove the point, Paul uses the Old Testament patriarch Abraham, of whom the Scripture says (Genesis 15:6) … “Abraham believed the Lord, and he credited it to him as righteousness.” In other words, Abraham is righteous before God, not because of his personal morality, or because he followed the law (the law hadn’t been given yet), but because of his faith. Then Paul makes this great statement to believers in the Gentile (and pagan) region of Galatia (3:7) that those who place their faith in Christ Jesus are “sons of Abraham.” That is, they are part of the family of God and partakers in the covenant of God.
(Let me say a word about “sonship”: many times, the language of the Holy Spirit in Scripture is gender neutral, but we readers are not gender neutral. Women and girls may have difficulty with the term “sons of Abraham” and boys/men may have difficulty with a term we encounter later, “the bride of Christ,” referring to all believers, regardless of gender. The point of these expressions is not gender based and we shouldn’t read them that way. Sonship implies being an heir … having a part of the covenant God made with Abraham and being a part of the family of God.)
Later on, Paul will say the true Israelite is the believer, and not the blood descendent of Abraham. He continues in verse 8 pointing out that, in His foreknowledge, God has anticipated Gentiles coming into the family of God and being a part of His evangelistic purpose of bringing His blessing (the Gospel of Christ) to the nations. That’s very significant! Then the passage points out that no one is justified by the Law, the purpose of which was to cause our acknowledgment of sin and point everyone to the Savior so that all, Jew and Gentile alike, can receive the promise of the Holy Spirit.
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