Delivered by Grace through Faith in Christ Alone (Galatians 1:1-5)

³ Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, ⁴ who gave himself for our sins to deliver us from the present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father, (Galatians 1:3-4 ESV)

This Sunday marks the beginning of a new expositional sermon series in the Epistle to the Galatians. This timeless and inspired text will serve us by urging us to stay close to the gospel of Jesus Christ.

The planned outline of the series is as follows, but subject to change:

1 Delivered by Grace through Faith in Christ Alone (Galatians 1:1-5)

2 The Gospel of Grace through Faith in Christ Alone (Galatians 1:6-24)

3 Reconciled by Grace through Faith in Christ Alone (Galatians 2:1-14)

4 Justified by Grace through Faith in Christ Alone (Galatians 2:15-3:14)

5 Leveled by Grace through Faith in Christ Alone (Galatians 3:15-4:7)

6 Freed by Grace through Faith in Christ Alone (Galatians 4:8-5:15)

7 Empowered by Grace through Faith in Christ Alone (Galatians 5:16-26)

8 Motivated by Grace through Faith in Christ Alone (Galatians 6:1-10)

9 Boasting in Christ Alone to the Glory of God (Galatians 6:11-18)

You will notice a common theme: by Grace through faith in Christ alone. 

The Book of Galatians points us to many themes, but the common foundation is that our salvation is by grace through faith in Christ. Alone.

True, if we have been Christians for any time, we have heard this expression and are prone to say “amen!” We know salvation is by grace – that is, God’s unmerited favor is bestowed upon us undeserving sinners; we know salvation is through faith – that is, God grants to us the righteousness of Christ through our trust in him and not by our works; we know that salvation is in Christ alone – that is, we may only come to God and be forgiven by what Christ has done for us on the cross and his resurrection, and we cannot add to his work!

We know these truths.

But – do we love these truths? Do we protect these truths? Do we daily function as though these things are true?

The Galatian churches believed this gospel when Paul and others preached it to them, but they were so quickly moved to another gospel (which is not a gospel), in that they were persuaded to believe that they must contribute to the gospel of pure grace by their own works. As we’ll explore in our series, they became convinced that going back to the Law of Moses, first entering by circumcision, and then keeping various holidays, would earn them a place in the people of God. 

The Apostle Paul was rightly unnerved by this, and the Book of Galatians is written from the perspective of godly grief, righteous anger, and powerful hope that these believers would return to the gospel of grace through faith in Christ alone.

Brothers and sisters, as we begin with verses 1-5 of chapter 1 this Sunday, ask yourself – in what or in whom am I trusting each day for deliverance? Verse 4 tells us that Christ was given to “deliver us from this present evil age.” Do you believe this? Or do you trust in your own merits, or in worldly leaders, or in programs or methods or trends or money or anything or anyone other than Christ alone? 

May the Lord use this passage and this entire series to anchor us to our only hope: the gospel of God’s grace in Christ. Alone.