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From Slavery To Sonship, Part 3

December 26, 2010 Pastor: John Fonville Series: Galatians

Scripture: Galatians 4:1–4:7

From Slavery To Sonship

Part 3


Text: Galatians 4:1-7




I.            The Law Discloses Our Need for Sonship. vv. 1-3


II. God the Father Sent His Son to Merit our Sonship. vv. 4-5


A.            The Timing of the Son’s Sending, v. 4a


B.            The Source of the Son’s Sending, v. 4b


C.            The Method of the Son’s Sending, v. 4c




D.            The Occasion of the Son’s Sending. v. 4d


Now if someone asks, How has Christ abolished sin, banished the separation between us and God, and acquired righteousness to render God favorable and kindly toward us? To this we can in general reply that He has achieved this for us by the whole course of His obedience…Paul extends the oasis of the pardon that frees us from the curse of the law to the whole life of Christ: ‘But when the fullness of time came, God sent forth His Son, born of woman, subject to the law, to redeem those who were under the law’ [Gal. 4:4-5]…In short, from the time when He took on the form of a servant, He began to pay the price of liberation in order to redeem us” (John Calvin, Institutes, 2.16.5).


…even in death itself His willing obedience is the important thing because a sacrifice not offered voluntarily would not have furthered righteousness…we must hold fast to this: that no proper sacrifice to God could have been offered unless Christ, disregarding His own feelings, subjected and yielded Himself wholly to His Father’s will…” (John Calvin, Institutes, 2.16.5).




What difference does the active obedience of Christ make in our lives?


1. The Active Obedience of Christ Brings Comfort in our Ongoing Struggle with Sin.


…God wants us to find our primary joy in our objectively declared justification, not in our subjectively perceived sanctification. Regardless of how much progress we make in our pursuit of holiness, it will never come close to the absolute perfect righteousness of Christ that is ours through our union with Him in His life and death” (Jerry Bridges, “The Discomfort of the Justified Life,” in Justified, p. 94).


2. The Active Obedience of Christ Assures us that God the Father is Pleased with us.


“If, then, we would be assured that God is pleased with and kindly disposed toward us, we must fix our eyes and minds on Christ alone. For…through Him alone we escape the imputation of our sins to us- an imputation bringing with it the wrath of God” (Institutes, 2.16.3).


© John Fonville

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