Sunday, April 19, 2015
How foolish can you be? After starting your Christian lives in the Spirit, why are you now trying to become perfect by your own human effort? (Galatians 3:3 NLT)
You know all that the Letter to the Galatians is about, and you know the two prominent words – Liberty – "Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage" (Galatians 4:1 – A.V.) – and sonship. Not servanthood, nor slavery, but sonship; the liberty of sons. They are the two great words of that Letter, but what are the grave bands there in Galatia? They are the grave bands of tradition, of legalism, and all such things. You know, dear friends, it is very easy to get tied up with these grave clothes!
The persistent peril through the ages of Christianity is to crystallize itself into something set, something fixed. You have some light, some revelation, something of the immensity of truth, just a fragment of it, and it is not long before you begin to form that into a set system and make it the limit, saying that this is what people must believe, they must come within this horizon, and they must behave like this. It becomes a system again: 'You must... you must not!', and there is no difference between that and the Old Testament 'Thou shalt... thou shalt not!' Christianity has fallen into that peril, and is continually doing it, circumscribing the great revelation, making Christ smaller than He is, crystallizing truth into something fixed and set: 'This is how...' and the meaning of that is: 'This is the ultimate.' Now you notice that when the Spirit did come, as we have the record in the Book of the Acts, the one thing that these old Jewish disciples experienced was a marvelous emancipation from that bondage of Judaism; and how the Holy Spirit was working all along against any fixed barriers!
By T. Austin-Sparks from: “Loose Him, and Let Him Go”
This photograph is by Liz Burnell.