GALATIANS‬ ‭5:1-4‬‬‬

“So Christ has truly set us free. Now make sure that you stay free, and don’t get tied up again in slavery to the law. Listen! I, Paul, tell you this: If you are counting on circumcision to make you right with God, then Christ will be of no benefit to you. I’ll say it again. If you are trying to find favor with God by being circumcised, you must obey every regulation in the whole law of Moses. For if you are trying to make yourselves right with God by keeping the law, you have been cut off from Christ! You have fallen away from God’s grace.”

Galatians‬ ‭5:1-4‬ ‭NLT‬‬

The common mistake among new believers is to act as if Christianity is a way to preserve their old way of living. They erroneously believe that the purpose of the religion is to cleanse their sins from their old way so that they may continue in it. But the truth of Christianity is a transformative one. It does not cleanse the old way but instead provides a completely new way. For non-believers unfamiliar with the hope of Christianity, this is a fairly easy process. They come from a world where the presence of the idea of a relationship with God, let alone its actuality, is profound and radical. But for those who grew up in a culture informed by Christianity, everything from America itself to individual evangelical families, this can be incredibly difficult. There is an assumed blessing that is presumed upon culture. They are entitled to the blessings of a relationship with Christ, but without a true understanding of what it is like to live without those blessings. To this end, these Christians often participate in a cultural Christianity that views a relationship with God more like a relationship with a State. Their job is to act as a citizen and to follow its rules. And if they can move well in that system, then they can rise within it and benefit from it. However, this is not what Christianity is. Christianity is a relationship with God. To truly participate in our faith and God’s grace, we must possess a real understanding of our need for him. We must confess and repent, even from within the blessings of Christianity.

Published by Josh McGary

MY NAME IS JOSH MCGARY. First, I am a Pastor of a small church in Portland, Oregon named Aletheia Bible Fellowship. We call it ABF. I have been a pastor there for the better part of 20 years. I am very eclectic. What I love, I love loudly and immersively. I have notable collections of toys, funko pops, and vinyl. I also infamously love pop culture, comic books, technology, the arts, psychology and philosophy.

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