Living by the Law or Living by Faith (Sat. Dec. 5)

The word of the day is “faith”  In our reading of Galatians 3:8-12, St. Paul maintains that those who God counts as righteous cannot live by doing works of the Mosaic Law.  But, the Apostle says, “The just will live by faith” (vs. 12). Paul’s argument that faith, not works, gives life is two-fold.  First, the Apostle notes that before  God gave the Law to Moses, the Almighty gave a universal promise to Abraham. The Almighty pledged that He would bless all the peoples of the world “in Abraham” (vs 8).   The Apostle taught that already before Moses, David, and the prophets, inspired scripture foresaw that the Gentiles would receive the fulfillment of this divine promise to Abraham.  God would…

Faith, a Relationship and a State of Being (Sun. Nov. 1)

The word of the day is “faith.” Today in our reading of Galatians 2:16-20, St. Paul charges that some believers in Galatia are abandoning their faith in Christ.  These turncoats have fallen under the spell of “Judaizers” from Jerusalem who teach that being Christian means doing all the works of the Mosaic Law. Paul thought that the leaders in Jerusalem had agreed that faith was sufficient for membership in the Church.  But now even Peter had refused to associate with Gentiles who “did not live as Jews” (vs. 14). Paul reacted vehemently.  The Gospel was at stake.  The Apostle’s message was that the works of the Mosaic Law did not and could not justify sinners in God’s sight. God’s approval…