November 24, 2022
Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for our sins so that He might rescue us from this present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father, to whom be the glory forevermore. Amen. (Galatians 1:3-5)
It is amazing and beautiful that Paul can sum up the whole work of redemption in one sentence. The first few verses of the book of Galatians are an introductory welcome, but Paul cannot help himself. He immediately turns to the Father and the Son and their work on our behalf. It is first on his mind as he writes to the believers in Galatia, and he wants it first in their minds. When he mentions the "Lord Jesus Christ," he instantly elaborates on what He did for us and why.
THE GREAT EXCHANGE
Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for our sins.
This is it. This is the heart of everything. It is the summary of the incarnation. It is the reason Christ descended to the earth. Jesus came to make the great exchange by giving Himself for our sins so that we might be cleansed, forgiven, and restored to God. There was no other agenda for His humility-filled entrance as a single-celled human in a virgin’s womb.
So that He might rescue us from this present evil age.
The world is as it is—filled with brokenness and evil and wars and tragedy—because of man's sin. We have all sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. It is an "evil age" we live in. We all know this without much observation. We see sin’s devastation in others and our own lives. Every ounce of evil around us is because of the enemy’s work and our cooperation with him.
Christ's coming was for one purpose: to rescue us. To deliver us from this world and the cruel taskmaster of sin. His payment for our sins on the cross and our faith in Him for that very act sets us free! We are delivered from the penalty of sin, from the power of sin, and ultimately from the presence of sin eternally. We once could do nothing else but sin. Although we are affected by sin, we are no longer dominated by sin. We can choose not to sin because of Christ's rescue!
Even death, the final tyrant, holds no sting and the grave no victory over us because of Christ’s liberating work. Sin's reign over us is finished as Christ takes us—forgiven and pardoned—into an eternity with God. We are rescued fully from this present evil age.
According to the will of our God and Father, to whom be the glory forevermore. Amen.
If you have ever doubted God’s love for you, then study this simple phrase. Behind all the matchless, sacrificial work of Jesus on your behalf is the Father, full of love and grace. This Divine rescue operation happened "according to the will of our God and Father, to whom be the glory always." He intended that the deliverance occur, so our lives would be rescued and eternity with Him secured. The Father, Son, and Spirit set out to save us. And they did.
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