JESUS = THE ONLY WAY: Galatians 4:8-11

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SCRIPTURE

Galatians 4:8-11
Formerly, when you did not know God, you were enslaved to those that by nature are not gods. But now that you have come to know God, or rather to be known by God, how can you turn back again to the weak and worthless elementary principles of the world, whose slaves you want to be once more? 10 You observe days and months and seasons and years! 11 I am afraid I may have labored over you in vain.

BIG IDEA

In Galatians 4:8-11, Paul tells us that there are two ways to be lost and one way to be found. Paul is saying that trying to earn your salvation through being very moral and obeying the Law of God is just as much enslavement to idols as flat out pagan idol-worship, with all of its immorality. Why? Because an idol is not simply a graven image you bow down to. An idol is anything or anyone you look to, other than Jesus, to give you your worth and fulfillment. These Galatians were being tempted to look to the Law and their obedience in order to be fulfilled, and gain acceptance with God. We can turn anything into an idol. Often times they are not inherently bad things, but good things turned into god things. The problem is, they cannot give the fulfillment and worth they promise but only leave us empty, wanting more, and alienated from God. There are two ways to be lost—the path of irreligion and of religion. The answer to our idolatry? Knowing God and being known by him (v 9). This is only possible through the work of Jesus and faith in him. He brings us into a right relationship with God—he is our father and we his children. Why is this the antidote to idolatry? We make idols because we’re insecure. Therefore, the antidote to our insecurity is being secure in the fact that you know God and, even better, you are known by him. You will never be free from the idols in your life until you see and trust that in Christ, God the Father has set his love on you and will never let you go.

DISCUSSION

1. Was there anything from the sermon, big idea, or Galatians 4:8-11 that stood out to you, challenged you, or confused you?

Trying to earn your salvation through being very moral and obeying the Law of God is just as much enslavement to idols as flat out pagan idol-worship, with all of its immorality. . . There are two ways to be lost—the path of irreligion and of religion.

2. How would you describe Irreligion? What about Religion? Why are both of these paths, in the end, the same? How does this challenge the way a lot of people think here in the Bible belt?

An idol is not simply a graven image you bow down to. An idol is anything or anyone you look to, other than Jesus, to give you your worth and fulfillment. . . We can turn anything into an idol. Often times they are not inherently bad things, but good things turned into god things.

3. What idols are you in most danger of serving?

You will never be free from the idols in your life until you see and trust that in Christ, God the Father has set his love on you and will never let you go.

4. How does God knowing you reassure you today?

5. How does remembering that God knows you free you from the temptation to worship idols?

GOOD WORD

If we know Jesus, and know that He knows us, we will enjoy Him, and push the controlling idols to the side. – Tim Keller

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