Can’t Do It!

We are still looking at the book of Galatians, today in the third chapter.  Here we find Paul trying to show the church in Galatia how foolish they are in reverting back to a legalistic form of worship. He makes it clear that all the pretense of following the Mosaic law, was just that – a pretense, something that was impossible:

13-14 Christ redeemed us from that self-defeating, cursed life by absorbing it completely into himself. Do you remember the Scripture that says, "Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree"? That is what happened when Jesus was nailed to the cross: He became a curse, and at the same time dissolved the curse. And now, because of that, the air is cleared and we can see that Abraham’s blessing is present and available for non-Jews, too. We are all able to receive God’s life, his Spirit, in and with us by believing—just the way Abraham received it. Galatians 3:13-14 (MSG)

What man could not do in trying to impose the law was settled with what Jesus did at Calvary. The failure of keeping the law separated man from God. The penalty for that was death. Jesus took the ultimate penalty for sin and died on a tree. Here in the Message translation we see it so clear, not only did Jesus become a curse, but "He also "dissolved the curse."  What that did was remove the fog preventing understanding of God’s ultimate plan, which was for Jews and non-Jews alike to receive the blessing of the Spirit, the life of God, not by what we are able to do to accomplish it, but by believing, "just the way Abraham received it". 

The major point in this chapter is that rule-keeping only leads to rule-breaking, which necessitates  more rules. The plan of God puts all the penalty for not keeping the rules on Jesus, who "once and for all" bore that penalty and set us free to receive God’s Spirit, His Power, and His love. We now find that:

"This is the brand-new covenant that I will make with Israel when the time comes. I will put my law within them—write it on their hearts!—and be their God. And they will be my people. They will no longer go around setting up schools to teach each other about God. They’ll know me firsthand, the dull and the bright, the smart and the slow. I’ll wipe the slate clean for each of them. I’ll forget they ever sinned!" God‘s Decree. Jeremiah 31:33 (MSG)