THURSDAY January 7, 2021
Grace and Peace
…and all the brethren who are with me. To the churches of Galatia: Grace to you and peace from God the Father and our Lord Jesus Christ….
In the very first verses, we read the greeting to the recipients. Paul gave greeting to all the churches in Galatia, in Asia Minor––modern Turkey. In Acts 18:23, he spoke about a journey taken to strengthen the disciples in Galatia.
The name Galatia came from tribes called “the Gaul’s,” a Celtic people that settled in Asia Minor after several centuries of plundering between the Greeks and the Roman Empire. Under Roman rule, the original area of Galatia was made part of a larger Provence––modern Turkey. It encompasses an area of about 300 to 400 miles north to south, and up to 1,000 miles west to east.
Paul wrote this letter to the Galatians on his third missionary journey. In the introduction, you can already tell there were major problems in the church. In Galatia, Paul was combating these false teachers––Judaizers––who taught it was necessary to implement Jewish customs and practices, particularly those found in the Law of Moses, in order to be saved.
In his greeting, Paul mentioned the riches of God’s grace. Grace and peace are the Siamese twins of the New Testament. Grace is always placed first before peace. Grace means “unmerited favor,” and it is actually a Greek salutation, whereas the Hebrew salutation is peace––Shalom. It is important to understand that before you experience the peace of God, you first have to know the grace of God.
By grace you have been saved. What is your present position? It is in Christ. Therefore, there can be no bragging sessions in our testimonies, as we have been saved by grace through faith in Jesus Christ. Grace is a message all the way through the book of Galatians. When there is true faith, there is also grace and peace.
Faith is a living, daring confidence in God’s grace, so sure and certain that a man would stake his life on it a thousand times.
For more from Raul Ries, please visit SomebodyLovesYou.com!