Memory Text:Â â€œBut far be it from me to boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the worldâ€�Â (Galatians 6:14, ESV).
This study on Galatians has been intense. Thatâ€™s because the letter itself is intense. Knowing his calling, knowing the truth of what he preached (after all, as he said numerous times, that truth came from the Lord), Paul wrote with the inspired passion of the Old Testament prophets, of an Isaiah, a Jeremiah, a Hosea. Just as they pleaded with the people of God in their time to turn away from their error, Paul here is doing the same with those in his time.
No matter how different the immediate circumstances were, in the end the words of Jeremiah could just as easily apply to the Galatians as they did to those in Jeremiahâ€™s day: â€œThus saith the LORD, let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches: but let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the LORD which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith the LORDâ€�Â (Jer. 9:23-24).
Nowhere do our â€œgloriousâ€� human wisdom, our riches, and our might appear more clearly in all their futility and vanity than before the Cross of Christ â€” the focus of Paulâ€™s letter to his erring flock in Galatia.
Study this weekâ€™s lesson to prepare for Sabbath, September 30.
1 comment(s) for this post:
- Bulumko V. Msengana Dr:
23 Sep 2017
When Paul says in Galatians 6:14, â€œMay it never be that I would boast, except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ,â€� he is reminding us of the great blessing we received when we were bought at the cost of the death of Jesus Christ. But how does one boast about the cross? After all the cross was an instrument of torture, intended to exert excruciating pain,maximum humiliation and suffering from the criminal. It was grossly inhumane, brutal, merciless and bloody. However, the crucifixion of the sinless Son of God, Jesus Christ struck a fatal blow to satan, sin and powers of darkness.
Paul knew what the prophet Jeremiah had written: “Let not the wise man boast of his wisdom or the strong man boast of his strength or the rich man boast of his riches” (Jeremiah 9:23) as well Solomon’s wise counsel: “Let another praise you, and not your own mouth; someone else, and not your own lips” (Proverbs 27:2). We can clearly see that Paul’s exhortation to glory in the cross of Christ stood in contrast to the Jews’ boasting of their culture and tradition. They insisted on circumcision of their converts. Circumcision to them was a sign of belonging to God. They never saw the great love shown by our Lord at the cross. In this regard Ellen G. White says, “Through the cross we learn that the heavenly Father loves us with a love that is infinite. Can we wonder that Paul exclaimed, ‘God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ’? Galatians 6:14. It is our privilege also to glory in the cross, our privilege to give ourselves wholly to Him who gave Himself for us. Then, with the light that streams from Calvary shining in our faces, we may go forth to reveal this light to those in darkï¿¾ness.”â€”The Acts of the Apostles, page 210.
When we accept Jesus Paul tells us in Galatians 2:20, â€œI have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me.â€�
Source: Daily Sabbath School Lessons