RHYTHM: Will of God – Galatians 3

Lectionary for youth ministry Galatians 3Friday before Proper 7: Galatians 3:15-22

Reading: Galatians 3:15-22

The Will of God

For a moment, it sounds like Paul is suggesting that God had a legal document drawn up naming Abraham’s offspring the sole inheritor in the event of God’s death. Not quite.

The word will here just means covenant. It’s a cool association—if I make a covenant with you, I’m binding myself to my own intentions. Paul’s point is that when a covenant is made, no one can amend it. Nothing can be taken away; nothing can be added. It stands as written or stated. He then pokes at word usage. Citing the singularity of offspring (not offsprings) Paul moves quickly to suggest that singular offspring is Jesus. Between the instigation of the covenant and the arrival of Jesus, the law came to more or less try to hold things together.

All of this math is necessary because the Galatians appear to have been swayed into believing that the law remains necessary in their lives. Yep; circumcision again. I’ll mention again that would genuinely test the resolve of potential male converts. But Paul remains emphatically opposed to placing conditions on God’s grace.

For reflection:

What’s the most serious binding agreement you’ve ever entered?

Beyond legal agreements, how do you show your commitment to a promise?

What value remains in Old Testament law for you?

If you were to “give an example from daily life” today, how would you go about describing the transition from the promise to Abraham to Christ?

 

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