Galatians 4: Meet Your Quite Imperfect Spiritual Parents

Just like them, we all have to choose.











If you’re in the resident congregation turn off your electronic devices and put them away. Let this be a place where you aren’t distracted by the world.


Welcome To



Rory Clark



Good Morning!


Welcome to Barah Ministries…an intimate, local Christian Church with a worldwide impact.  My name is Pastor Rory Clark.  Thanks for listening to this Bible lesson!


Why did God the Father create Barah Ministries?


God the Father provides millions of places like Barah Ministries all over the world so all of His creatures can get to know the Savior of the world…our Lord… Jesus…the Christ.  Jesus Christ is Godand the Bible confirms His Deity so many places in so many ways.  Titus tells us Jesus Christ is not just a man…Titus, Chapter 2, Verses 13 and 14…


TITUS 2:13

…we believers in Christ arelooking for the blessed hope with absolute confidence…we are looking for the appearing of the glory of our great Godwho is our Savior…the Christ (the Jewish Messiah)…Jesus…


TITUS 2:14

…who gave Himself as a sin substitutefor us…to redeem us from sovereignty to every lawless deed (sin)…and to purify for Himself a people for His very own possession…a people who are eager to do good deeds.


No man ever died to pay for the sins of the whole world.  That’s the work of God!  Jesus Christ is God, and we owe everything to Him.  He created us andfreed us from slavery to sin and the Mosaic Law.  All praise and gratitude to Jesus for His wondrous work on our behalf.


As believers in Christ, we know that the Lord’s work at the Cross has cleansed us

from all sin, unrighteousness, and ungodliness, and we gladly bring our conduct into conformity with His will.


At Barah Ministries, we introduce people to the Lord.  We make a difference by teaching the Word of God verse-by-verse from the Lord’s perspective and not from man’s perspective.  We don't think churchis a concert, or a singles bar, or a therapy session, or announcement fest, or a place to contribute to a building fund.  Of course, all of these things have their place.


Church is a place to get to know the Lord Jesus Christ…the One who created you.  You get to know Him by studying His exact thoughts, outlined in the Bible.  The Lord Himself commands us to study the Word, and He offers a reward when we do.  He exhorts us in Proverbs, Chapter 3, Verses 1 and 2…



My sons…do not forget My teaching…but let your heart keep my mandates (commands).



For My words will add length to your days and years toyour life and the peace of God to your soul.


How comforting to know the Lord provides everything we need to thrive inSatan's kingdom until we believers in Christ go home to be with Him.


Yes…God has an enemy…Satan…whom God made ‘the ruler of this world' for a finite period.  In John, Chapter 12, Verse 31 the Lord says…


JOHN 12:31

“Now judgment is upon this world…now the ruler of this world (Satan) will be cast out (he will be dethroned at a future time)…”


Satan is a perfect, gorgeous, well-dressed, former officer angel, and he is a brilliant genius.  He blinds the minds of unbelievers so they don’t get to know God and so they don’t see the power of the gospel message.  He disrupts the chance for the Lord’s believersto become intimate with Him by distracting us to meaningless pursuits.  If not for the Lord’s protective power, everyone would be defenseless against Satan.


The spiritual life is warfare, and your soul is the battleground.  In Ephesians,

Chapter 6, Verse 12 believers in Christ are reminded that…



…our struggle is not against flesh and blood (against human beings…a physical struggle)…our struggle is spiritual…against the rulers…against the powersof this dark world…against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places (Satan’s spiritual mafia).


Many believers in Christ, through Satan’s encouragement, have abandoned their spiritual lives for a counterfeit spiritual life.  Yet we rejoice knowing that in the future the Lord will take over planet Earth and rule it in righteousness for a thousand years.  James, Chapter 4, Verse 7 reminds us…



(Believers in Christ)…submit yourselves to God…obey Him…resist the devil (by standing fast on your victorious ground) and he will flee from you.


Follow the Lord, and He gives you the desires of your heart.



Meet Your Quite Imperfect Spiritual Parents




There are several ways to trace your ancestry.  Most of these programs are inaccurate.  But you can trace your Biblical lineage with surgical accuracy.  If you’re a believer in Christ, who are your spiritual parents?  In today’s lesson, you’ll meet your human spiritual father and mother…and it may surprise you from whom you are descended.




Let’s hear some music!  First Peter, Chapter 2, Verse 9 says God owns each of us.



…you believers in Christ are a chosen race…a royal priesthood…a holy nation…a people for God’s own possession…so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light…


June Murphy says it in a song.  As believers in Christ, we are GOD'S PROPERTY.




Let’s Sing the Lord’s Praises



June Murphy



Let us pray...


We’re grateful, Heavenly Father, for the privilege of studying Your absolute truth...the Word of God…


Father thank you for introducing us to our spiritual parents in today’s lesson…thanks especially for letting us know all of the people in the Bible are the same as us…real people…who make real mistakes…who struggle with the gift of faith You have given us…


…as we study today, let us settle into the idea that You never expected perfection from us…what You really want is that we trust all You have done for us by investing our faith in Your Son, the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, for salvation…and after investing our faith in Christ’s saving work, to continue spending our faith to follow the direction of our Mentor and Teacher God the Holy Spirit…


…we ask this through the power of God the Holy Spirit…in Christ’s name...Amen.



Meet Your Quite Imperfect Spiritual Parents




We continue our study of Paul’s letter to the believers in the first-century Galatian region (modern-day Turkey) in the second half of Galatians, Chapter 4.  Paul is challenging this group of believersthe same way he challenges twenty-first-century believers in Christ.  He encourages us not to be duped by false teachers and their false teaching.  You’ll remember how Paul admonished the Galatians in Chapter 3, Verse 1…



You foolish Galatians…who has bewitched you?


The Galatians had fallen for the sales pitch of false teachers…Satan’s emissaries…who were out to shipwreck the faith of this new set of believers in Christ.  It’s the same strategy Satan uses to bewitch believers in Christ today.


Let’s listen to the passage…Galatians, Chapter 4, Verses 21 to 31…



Tell meGalatian believerswho want to be under the law…do you not listen to and learn from the law?



For it is written that Abraham had two sons…one by the bondwoman (Hagar) and one by the free woman (Sarah).



But the son by the bondwoman was born according to the flesh…and the son by the free woman was born through the promise from God.



This is an allegory…for these women are two covenants…the covenant to one woman proceeding from Mount Sinai…bearing children who are to be slaves…she is Hagar.



Now this Hagar is Mount Sinai in Arabia (modern-day Egypt) and corresponds to the present Jerusalem…for she is in slavery with her children.



But the Jerusalem from above is free…she is our mother.



For it is written, “Rejoice, barren woman who does not bear…break forth and

shout, you who are not in labor…for more numerous are the children of the desolate than of the one who has a husband.”



And you believers in Christare like Isaac…you are children of the promise from God.



And just as at that time…he who was born according to the flesh persecuted him who was born according to the Spirit…and so it is now also.



But what does the Scripture say?  “Cast out the bondwoman (Hagar) and her son (Ishmael)…for the son of the bondwoman shall not be an heir with Isaac)…the son of the free woman (Sarah).”



So then, believers in Christ, we are not children of a bondwoman (Hagar)…but we are children of the free woman (Sarah).


Welcome, believers in Christ, to an introduction to your human spiritual parents, Abraham and Sarah.  This is a fun lesson!  For you to understand the significance of this passage, we take you back into the Old Testament to let you hear the story of Abraham and Sarah, your human spiritual parents.


What you’ll see is the same thing you experience in your own life.  Abraham and Sarah were quite imperfectand downright stupid at times, just as we are today.  The nice thing?  Despite our imperfections, God loves us unconditionally.  He can use imperfect people to accomplish His perfect purpose.


Let's take a look into Genesis…Chapters 15, 16, 17, and 21…to get a profile on the lives of our spiritual parents.


Abraham was 75 years old when he started following the Lord.  Genesis, Chapter 15, Verses 1 to 4….



After these things the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision, saying,

“Do not fear, Abram…I (the Lord) am a shield to you…your reward shall be very great.”



Abram said, “O Lord God, what will You give me, since I am childless, and the heir of my house is Eliezer of Damascus?”



And Abram said, “Since You have given no offspring to me, one born in my house is my heir.”



Then behold, the word of the Lord came to Abram (a promise directly from God), saying, “This man…Eliezer of Damascus…WILL NOT be your heir…but one who will come forth from your own body…he shall be your heir.”


Cue the laughter!  Abram was seventy-five years old.  Even though Abram placed his confidence in the Lord for salvation, he could hardly believe his ears that a son would be born from his own loins at his age, especially because his wife, Sarai, was barren.  Genesis, Chapters 16 and 17 tell the next part of the story…



Now Sarai, Abram’s wife had borne him no children (because she was barren…unable to have children)…and Sarai had an Egyptian maid whose name was Hagar.



So Sarai said to Abram, “Now behold, the Lord has prevented me from bearing children. Please have sex with my maid…perhaps I will obtain children through her.” And Abram listened to the voice of Sarai.


There’s the imperfection of human beings.  Abram had a promise from God, but he got impatient.  He and Sarai decided to take matters into their own hands instead of waiting for the Lord to fulfill His promise.  Can yourelate?  Isn’t it awful when God chooses not to work on our time frame?  Genesis, Chapter 16, Verse 3 and following…



After Abram had lived ten years in the land of Canaan, Abram’s wife Sarai took

Hagar the Egyptian, her maid, and gave her to her husband Abram as his wife.


Two wives…oh boy!



Abram had sex with Hagar, and she conceived…and when Hagar saw that she had conceived, her mistress (Sarai) was despised in her sight.



And Sarai said to Abram, “May the wrong done me be upon you. I gave my maid into your arms, but when Hagar saw that she had conceived, I was despised in her sight. May the Lord judge between you and me.”


Nice job Sarai!  You give your husband an idea…he does it…and then you blame him!  Thank God that never happens today!  😊



But Abram said to Sarai, “Behold, your maid is in your power…do to her what is good in your sight.” So Sarai treated Hagar harshly, and Hagar fled from Sarai’s presence.



Now the angel of the Lord found Hagar by a spring of water in the wilderness…by the spring on the way to Shur.



The angel said, “Hagar…Sarai’s maid…where have you come from and where are you going?” And she said, “I am fleeing from the presence of my mistress Sarai.”



Then the angel of the Lord said to her, “Return to your mistress, and submit yourself to her authority.”



Moreover, the angel of the Lord said to her, “I will greatly multiply your

descendants so that they will be too many to count.”



The angel of the Lord said to her further, “Behold, you are with child, and you will

bear a son…and you shall call his name Ishmael…because the Lord has given heed to your affliction.”



“He will be a wild donkey of a man…his hand will be against everyone…and everyone’s hand will be against him…and he will live to the east of all his brothers.”



Then Hagar called the name of the Lord who spoke to her, “You are a God who sees” … for she said, “Have I even remained alive here after seeing Him?”



Therefore the well was called Beer-lahai-roi…behold, it is between Kadesh and Bered.



So Hagar bore Abram a son…and Abram called the name of his son, whom Hagar bore, Ishmael.



Abram was eighty-six years old when Hagar bore Ishmael to him.


In Genesis, Chapter 17 the story continues…



Now when Abram was ninety-nine years old, the Lord appeared to Abram and said to him, “I am God Almighty…walk before Me, and be blameless.”



“I will establish My covenant between Me and you…and I will multiply you exceedingly.”



Abram fell on his face, and God talked with him, saying…



“As for Me, behold, My covenant is with you…and you will be the father of a multitude of nations.”


“No longer shall your name be called Abram…but your name shall be Abraham… for I have made you the father of a multitude of nations.”



“I will make you exceedingly fruitful, and I will make nations of you, and kings will come forth from you.”



“I will establish My covenant between Me and you and your descendants after you throughout their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be God to you and to your descendants after you.”



“I will give to you and to your descendants after you, the land of your sojournings…all the land of Canaan…for an everlasting possession…and I will be their God.”



God said further to Abraham, “Now as for you, you shall keep My covenant, you and your descendants after you throughout their generations.”



“This is My covenant, which you shall keep, between Me and you and your descendants after you…every male among you shall be circumcised.”



“And you shall be circumcised in the flesh of your foreskin, and it shall be the sign of the covenant between Me and you.”



“And every male among you who is eight days old shall be circumcised throughout

your generations, a servant who is born in the house or who is bought with moneyfrom any foreigner, who is not of your descendants.”



“A servant who is born in your house or who is bought with your money shall surely be circumcised…thus shall My covenant be in your flesh as a reminderfor an everlasting covenant.”


“But an uncircumcised male who is not circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin, that person shall be cut off from his people…he has broken My covenant.”



“Then God said to Abraham, “As for Sarai your wife, you shall not call her name Sarai, but Sarah shall be her name.”



“I will bless her, and indeed I will give you a son by her. Then I will bless her, and she shall be a mother of nations…kings of peoples will come from her.”



Then Abraham fell on his face and laughed, and said in his heart, “Will a child be born to a man one hundred years old? And will Sarah, who is ninety years old, bear a child?”



And Abraham said to God, “Oh that Ishmael might live before You!”


Abraham wanted Ishmael to be his heir.



But God said, “No…but Sarah your wife will bear you a son, and you shall call his name Isaac…and I will establish My covenant with him for an everlasting covenant for his descendants after him.”



“As for Ishmael, I have heard you…behold, I will bless him, and will make him fruitful and will multiply him exceedingly. He shall become the father of twelve princes, and I will make him a great nation.”



“But My covenant I will establish with Isaac, whom Sarah will bear to you at this season next year.”



When the Lord finished talking with Abraham, the Lord went up from Abraham.



Then Abraham took Ishmael his son, and all the servants who were born in his house and all who were bought with his money, every male among the men of Abraham’s household, and circumcised the flesh of their foreskin in the very same day, as God had told him to do.



Now Abraham was ninety-nine years old when he was circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin.





And Ishmael his son was thirteen years old when he was circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin.



In the very same day Abraham was circumcised, and Ishmael his son was circumcised.



All the men of his household, who were born in the house or bought with money from a foreigner, were circumcised with him.


Let’s skip ahead…continuing in Genesis, Chapter 18 at Verse 9…



Then three men standing near Abraham said to him, “Where is Sarah your wife?” And he said, “She is there, in the tent.”



The Lord said to Abraham, “I will surely return to you at this time next year…and

behold, Sarah yourwife will have a son.” And Sarah was listening at the tent door, which was behind Abraham.



Now Abraham and Sarah were old, advanced in age and Sarah was past childbearing age.


Yet nothing is impossible with God…



Sarah laughed to herself, saying, “After I have become old, shall I have pleasure, my lord being old also?”



And the Lord said to Abraham, “Why did Sarah laugh, saying, ‘Shall I indeed bear a child, when I am so old?’”



The Lord asked, “Is anything too difficult for the Lord? At the appointed time I will return to you…at this time next year…and Sarah will have a son.”



Sarah denied laughing, however, saying, "I did not laugh" … for she was afraid. And the Lord said, "You DID laugh.”


What a great idea Sarah…argue with the omniscient Lord!  😊. We skip ahead to Genesis, Chapter 21…



Then the Lord took note of Sarah as He had said, and the Lord did for Sarah as He had promised.


The Lord ALWAYS keeps His promises.



So Sarah conceived and bore a son to Abraham in his old age, at the appointed time of which God had spoken to him.



Abraham called the name of his son who was born to him…whom Sarah bore to

Him…Isaac (which means laughter).


That's the Lord's sense of humor.  You laugh? Name your son a name that means laughter!  When we return from the break, we'll take the offering, and we'll see what Paul has to teach us about our spiritual parents in the last half of Galatians, Chapter 4.




Casting Crowns



Meet Your Quite Imperfect Spiritual Parents




When you’re giving, what’s important to God is your attitude.  Second Corinthians, Chapter 9, Verse 7…



Each one must do just as he has purposed in his heart…not grudgingly or under compulsion…for God loves a cheerful giver.


When we give, God wants us to give voluntarily, thoughtfully, cheerfully, prayerfully, generously, and enthusiastically.  I urge you believers in Christ to check your attitude as you give.  Make sure your attitude is an EXACT reflection of the voluntary, thoughtful, cheerful, prayerful, generous, and enthusiastic sacrifice that our Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, made on your behalf at the Cross to provide you a “so great” salvation.


Let’s welcome up Deacon Denny Goodall with one of his always inspiring offering messages.



Deacon Denny Goodall





For God the Father rescued us from the domain of darkness…and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son (the Lord Jesus Christ)…




Instrumental Version


Meet Your Quite Imperfect Spiritual Parents




Now that we have the backstory from Genesis about Abraham, Hagar, and Sarah, let’s see what Paul is teaching the Galatian churches in the second passage of Galatians, Chapter 4.


God made a promise directly to Abraham twenty-five years before He fulfilled it.  God is patient…we are not.  The Lord made it clear to Abraham that there are only two approaches to a relationship with God, and only one of those approaches is effective for salvation.  Genesis, Chapter 15, Verse 6…



Abraham believed in the Lord and his faith was credited to him by the Lord as righteousness.


Those who count on God for their salvation…the “born again” ones…are gifted by God with spiritual birth through their faith in God’s promises.  Those who count on self for their salvation…those born according to the flesh…those born of self-reliance…those who want to be born again through their own works…are not saved.  It’s that simple.


Now let’s look at the passage verse-by-verse…Galatians, Chapter 4, Verse 21…



Tell me (says Paul)…you Galatian believers who want to be under the law…do you not listen to and learn from the law?


This is a rhetorical question.  Paul is saying to the Galatians who want to become more Jewish that the law never teaches allegiance to the law.  Paul asks, “Are you sure what the Old Testament says?”


The Judaizers…false teachers with false teaching designed to shipwreck the Galatians’ faith are proposing that after salvation, if you don’t become more legitimately Jewish by following rituals, rules, and law, you were never saved in the first place.Paul’s point?  The father of the Jewish race, Abraham, didn’t do any of these things to be saved.

Law and grace don’t belong under the same roof.  In Second Corinthians, Chapter 6, Verse 14, the Lord warns us…



Do not be bound together with unbelievers…for what partnership has righteousness and lawlessness (faith and works)…or what fellowship has light with darkness?


Another set of rhetorical questions.  The answer?  None.  Faith and works…light and darkness…are opposites.


The Judaizers thought of themselves as part of Abraham’s lineage because they were blood-related.  A blood relationship is not a spiritual relationship.  Abraham believed in God and was saved by God’s grace through his faith…a spiritual relationship.  Galatians, Chapter 4, Verse 22…



For it is written that Abraham had two sons…one by the bondwoman (Hagar) and one by the free woman (Sarah).


Ishmael, the son of Hagar, is the product of unbelief.  Isaac, the son of Sarah, is the product of belief.  Isaacwas born as a result of a promise directly from God to Abraham.  This is the contrast between the old and the new covenants (testaments).  The old covenant is obsolete.  Paul is telling the Galatians not to go back to it.  Works is a “do this or die” approach to God.  Faith is a trust Christ and liveapproach to God.  Galatians, Chapter 4, Verse 23…



But the son by the bondwoman (Hagar) was born according to the flesh…and the son by the free woman (Sarah) was born through the promise from God.


The whole world has only two choices…Hagar’s approach or Sarah’s approach.

Being born according to the flesh…being the product of self-reliance…is a key lesson in Galatians.  Self-reliance for salvation is a disaster!  Galatians, Chapter 4, Verse 24…



This is an allegory…for these women represent two covenants…the covenant to

one woman proceeding from Mount Sinai…bearing children who are to be

slaves…she is Hagar.


Mount Sinai is where Moses got the Mosaic Law from God.  It was a place of travail and turmoil….an unpleasant place…with smoke…darkness…gloom and doom… earthquakes…thunder… lightning…and fear of being under the Law.  There was no life in the law.


What happened at Mount Sinai is analogous to Hagar.  It’s the old covenant…an old arrangement.  Hagar represents man’s efforts which represent Judaism (rules, rituals, and laws)…just like the typical way of giving birth.  It does not work.


Sarah represents God’s supernatural work making us a new creation when we place our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and His work on our behalf at the Cross.  Galatians, Chapter 4, Verse 25…



Now this Hagar is Mount Sinai in Arabia (modern-day Egypt) and corresponds to the present Jerusalem (those who rejected their Messiah)…for she is in slavery with her children.


To bring the allegory into focus, Paul says, “Hagar corresponds to the present Jerusalem, for she is in slavery with her children.  Hagar represents the Law…a minister of death.” This is a direct attack on the Judaizers who have come from Jerusalem.  They are the children of Jerusalem, and they are slaves to the demonic forces of the world and to the Mosaic Law.  Paul’s point?  Don’t follow these false teachers—they may promise to show you how to become sons of Abraham…but beware…with them you will be a son of Ishmael, not Isaac.  They teach you how to be slaves, not heirs.


It’s a capital offense to sin against God, deserving of crucifixion, the worst punishment ever.  No one has ever been saved by lighting a menorah, or keeping the Sabbath, or honoring holy days.  If the old covenant worked, there would be no need to have a new covenant.  Jeremiah, Chapter 31, Verses 31 to 33…



“Behold, days are coming,” declares the Lord, “when I will make a new covenant WITH THE HOUSE OF ISRAEL and with the house of Judah…




…not like the old covenant which I made with their fathers in the dayI took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt…My covenant which they broke…although I was a husband to them," declares the Lord.



“But this is the covenant which I will make with the house of Israel after those days,” declares the Lord, “I will put My law WITHIN THEM AND ON THEIR HEART I will write it (inside of them…not outside of them)…and I will be their God…and they shall be My people.


Romans, Chapter 11, Verses 25 to 27…


ROMANS 11:25

For I (Paul) do not want you believers in Christ to be uninformed of this mystery—so that you will not be wise in your own estimation (perhaps becoming conceited because the Gentiles are the focus of this age)—I want you to know that a partial hardening has happened to Unbelieving Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in…


ROMANS 11:26

…and so all Israel will be delivered from the Tribulation…just as it is written, “The Deliverer will come from Zion (from the Jewish homeland)…He will remove ungodliness from Jacob (Israel).”


ROMANS 11:27

“This is My covenant with them (believing, regenerate Israel), when I take away their sins.”


After the dispensation of the Tribulation…most Jews will believe in the Messiah after their 2000+ year “time out” … after the Church Age…after the Battle of Armageddon (which breaks their will).  Galatians, Chapter 4, Verse 26…



But the Jerusalem from above is free (a reference to Sarah)…she is our mother.


Sarah represents the Jerusalem that comes down from above where all believers in Christ will live one day.  She is the mother of all Christians…the mother of those who by faith count on God’s supernatural ability to deliver His promises.

Abraham and Sarah produced children of a faith-based promise.  Abraham and Hagar produced that which is typical…a physically alive and spiritually dead child.

Flesh and blood…the natural way of being born…cannot enter into or inherit the kingdom of God.  You have to be born again as the Lord told the Pharisee Nicodemus in John, Chapter 3.


Galatians, Chapter 4, Verse 27…


GALATIANS 4:27 (Paul quoting Isaiah 54:1)

For it is written, “Rejoice, barren woman who does not bear…break forth and shout, you who are not in labor…for more numerous are the children of the desolate than of the one who has a husband.”


Sarah spent ninety years barren…putting up with women friends who were having babies and grandchildren…but now the tables have turned through faith… she is the spiritual mother of every believer in Christ.  God does things that are humanly impossible. This is one of the ways we are dependent on Him.  Galatians, Chapter 4, Verse 28…



And you believers in Christare like Isaac…you are children of the promise from God.


Faith in Christ alone…Mother Sarah…Father Abraham…they believed God and it was credited to them as righteousness.  Galatians, Chapter 4, Verse 29…



And just as at that time he who was born according to the flesh(Ishmael)  persecuted him who was born according to the Spirit (Isaac)…so it is now also.


The Arabs contend with the Jews, and Abraham is the one who fathered both sides of the conflict.  Ishmael (the wild donkey of a man at seventeen years old) persecuted Isaac (who was three years old)…Ishmael mocked Isaac…Sarah rejected Ishmael because of this.  Galatians, Chapter 4, Verse 30…



But what does the Scripture say?  “Get rid ofthe bondwoman (Hagar) and her son (Ishmael…the wild donkey of a man)…for the son of the bondwoman (Ishmael…born of flesh) shall not be an heir (sharing the inheritance) with the son (Isaac) of the free woman (Sarah).”


Galatians, Chapter 4, Verse 30 assures us that not the Ishmael-types—not the Judaizers—but the Isaac-types will inherit the blessing of Abraham, even though they may be persecuted in the process.  Galatians, Chapter 4, Verse 31…



So then, believers in Christ…we are not children of a bondwoman (Hagar)…but we are children of the free woman (Sarah).


We who live by faith in the Son of God don’t rely on what we can achieve on our own—so we are not in the slave category…we are in the category of the free.  Works-based people want God on their own terms…they contend, “I think God should think in a way that is convenient for me.”


Paul’s warning to the believers in Christ in the Galatians region…and to believers in Christ today…do not follow the Judaizers into slavery with Hagar and Ishmael…but follow Sarah and Isaac into freedom.  Christianity is freedom…religion is slavery.


Most people have a negative reaction to religion, probably because it is slavery…even those who are part of a religion feel this way…they know something just isn’t right.  Yet they put up with the hypocrisy rather than investigating the things their instincts are telling them…instincts incited by the convicting ministry of God the Holy Spirit.


God is simple…He has two ways of looking at people.  The people who are of the flesh are at odds with those who are of the Spirit.  Galatians, Chapter 5, Verse 17…


For the flesh sets its desire against God the Holy Spirit…and God the Holy Spirit  sets His desire against the flesh…for these two are in opposition to one another…


Unbelievers (like the Judaizers) love to persecute Christians.  People who like independence (I don’t need a crutch) don’t like the indictment of dependence (I need a crutch…too bad you don’t think you do even though you are crippled).  As Christians, we believe the Lord when He says, “When we are weak…that’s when we are strong.”  We choose to count on the supernatural power of God while

simultaneously rejecting human power.



The Good News of Jesus Christ’s Salvation Offer to the Human Race


The closing moments of our lesson today could be the ten most important minutes of your life.



He Wants You Make the Most Important Decision of Your Life


There is a Person at the core of Christianity…the Creator of Christianity…who cares about YOU.  His name is Jesus Christ.  He is the Sovereign God of theUniverse…He is the truth…and He wants a relationship with YOU!  This is your chance to choose to have a personal relationship with Him.


Your problem is that you were born a sinner in God’s eyes.  Sinners need a Savior.  The Savior of the whole world is Jesus Christ and He wants you to be saved…First Timothy, Chapter 2, Verses 3 and 4 say…



This is what is good and acceptable in the sight of the God who is our Savior…the Lord Jesus Christ…



…who desires for all men to be saved and who wants all men to come to the knowledge of the truth.


You will spend eternity in the Lake of Fire at physical death if you choose not to believe in Him.


There is only ONE WAY to get to heaven…by placing your faith in Jesus Christ to save you…by trusting what He has done at the Cross on your behalf.  If you’re going to place your confidence in the Lord Jesus Christ for your eternal salvation, you probably should get to know Him.  While there are many things to know about Him, here are the critical few things.


The Lord Jesus Christ is YOUR CREATOR…John, Chapter 1, Verse 3…


JOHN 1:3

All things came into being through the Lord (God the Son)…and apart fromHim, nothing came into being that has come into being.


The Lord Jesus Christ loves you UNconditionally…First John, Chapter 4, Verse 8…



The one who does not love unconditionally does not know the Lord…for the LordISunconditional love (it’s His Person and His identity).


The Lord Jesus Christ has forgiven ALL of your sins…past…present…and future…Isaiah, Chapter 43, Verse 25…


ISAIAH 43:25

“I, even I (the Lord), am the one who wipes out your transgressions for My own sake…and I will NOT remember your sins.”


The Lord doesn’t want you to work to please Him…Romans, Chapter 11, Verse 6 says…



But if salvation is by grace, and of course it is, it is no longer on the basis ofyour works…otherwise grace is no longer grace.


The Lord Jesus Christ doesn’t want you to go to the Lake of Fire…Second Peter, Chapter 3, Verse 9…



The Lord is not slow about His promise of salvation, as some accuse Him of…instead, He is patient toward unbelievers…not wishing for any of you to perish (in the Lake of Fire) but for all of you to come to repentance (a change of mind about having a relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ).


The Lord Jesus Christ is the Perfect Person to lead you to salvation.


God’s graciousness offers you a plan to be saved as a free gift.  Ephesians, Chapter 2, Verses 8 and 9…



For by God’s grace you have been saved through faith in Christ for salvation…and that grace and that faith and that salvation are not from the source of yourselves…it is the gift of God the Father…



…so being saved is not as a result ofyour works (deeds you have done in self-righteousness) … so that no one may boast (about savinghimself).


So how can you get to heaven?  This loving, forgiving, patient God who wants you to be saved is willing to save you right this minute.  John, Chapter 14, Verse 6…


JOHN 14:6

Jesus said to the doubting apostle, Thomas, “I am the way (to salvation), and I am the truth (through the Word of God), and I am the resurrection life (eternal life) …and no one comes to God the Father (in heaven) but through believing in Me.”


RIGHT WHERE YOU SIT, RIGHT NOW, you can tell God the Father that you believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, and that is the moment of eternal life foryou.  Acts, Chapter 16, Verse 31…


ACTS 16:31

“Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved by God…you and everyone in your household who also believes.”


So, accept the invitation and heed the warning in John, Chapter 3, Verse 36…


JOHN 3:36

“He who believes in the Son has the resurrection life right at that moment…but he who does not obey the command to believe in the Son will not see the resurrection life…instead the wrath of God (the Lake of Fire) abides on him.”


Who is this God who saves you?  The apostle Paul describes the Lord Jesus

Christ in First Corinthians, Chapter 15, Verses 3 and 4…



For I (Paul) delivered to you as of primary importance the gospel message I alsoreceived from God…that it was Jesus Christ who died for our sins according tothe Old Testament Scriptures…



…and that He was buried…and He was raised from the dead on the third day…according to the Old Testament Scriptures…


When you get to know Jesus Christ, you’ll have no problem placing your confidence in Him, both for your salvation and for everything else.  Why?  Because the Sovereign God of the Universe wants a relationship with you, He loves you unconditionally, and He died for you.  So, take advantage of His grace and you’ll be saved RIGHT NOW!


What happens if you reject a relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ?  Matthew, Chapter 25, Verse 41…



“Then Jesus will say to those on His left (unbelievers)…‘Depart from Me accursed ones into the eternal fire (The Lake of Fire) which has been prepared for the devil and his angels…”


Those are neither words you want to hear, nor words you have to hear.  John, Chapter 3, Verse 18…


JOHN 3:18

He who believes in Jesus Christ…placing his trust in Him for salvation…is not judged…he who does not believe in Jesus Christ has been judged already, because he is in a state of unbelief about the Person of the uniquely born Son of God.


Take the easy road to salvation…believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved.




Let’s close with music!  Hey believers in Christ…do you ever wonder if the Lord knows you?  He says He does in John, Chapter 10, Verses 14…


JOHN 10:14

I (the Lord Jesus Christ) am the good shepherd…and I know My own and My own know Me…


Not only are you a possession of the Almighty Lord…but as Francesca Battistelli sings…HE KNOWS YOUR NAME!




Let’s Sing the Lord’s Praises



Francesca Battistelli



Let us pray...


Almighty God and Father…


Thank you for not requiring us to be perfect…thanks for giving us Your written Word so we can see example after example of how You use imperfect people to accomplish Your perfect plan…people like Abraham and Sarah and Moses and King David and the apostles Peter and Paul…


…help us, Father, to get off of our own backs concerning our imperfections…help us to realize the work of Your Son at the Cross to pay for our mistakes…help us to focus instead on the tasks you want us to accomplish in Satan’s kingdom as we lead people into Your kingdom through the courtesy of God the Holy Spirit…as we provide the gospel message to the unbelievers in this lost and dying world…


…we ask this through the power of God the Holy Spirit…in Christ’s name...Amen.




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