Why Did Paul Call The Galatian Christians Foolish?



This morning I am continuing my series on the book of Galatians.

In chapter 3 the Apostle Paul gets pretty blunt with the Galatian church concerning their foolishness in trying to go back to a works orientated relationship with God. In fact he calls them foolish.

Unfortunately in the church today, many Christians have not heeded the warnings given by the Apostle Paul and they are doing the same thing as the Galatian Christians were doing in his day.

They are still trying to come up with some type of works that will allow them to feel as though they are pleasing God.

Why Were The Galatians Foolish?

Galatians 3:1-9

Oh, foolish Galatians! Who has cast an evil spell on you? For the meaning of Jesus Christ’s death was made as clear to you as if you had seen a picture of his death on the cross. 2 Let me ask you this one question: Did you receive the Holy Spirit by obeying the law of Moses? Of course not! You received the Spirit because you believed the message you heard about Christ. 3 How foolish can you be? After starting your new lives in the Spirit, why are you now trying to become perfect by your own human effort? 4 Have you experienced so much for nothing? Surely it was not in vain, was it?

5 I ask you again, does God give you the Holy Spirit and work miracles among you because you obey the law? Of course not! It is because you believe the message you heard about Christ.

6 In the same way, “Abraham believed God, and God counted him as righteous because of his faith.” 7 The real children of Abraham, then, are those who put their faith in God.

8 What’s more, the Scriptures looked forward to this time when God would declare the Gentiles to be righteous because of their faith. God proclaimed this good news to Abraham long ago when he said, “All nations will be blessed through you.” 9 So all who put their faith in Christ share the same blessing Abraham received because of his faith.

Paul addresses 3 issues in Galatians 3:1-9.

He talks about the picture or portrayal of Jesus crucified that was explained to them.

He talks about the fact that miracles do not come from works of the flesh or trying to get God to give you a miracle by doing works and finally, he talks about how we walk in the blessing of Abraham by faith and not works of the law.

They Believed They Could Pay The Price Jesus Paid

Take a look at the picture at the beginning of this article.

Are you able to add one thing to what Jesus did?

Can you honestly say that your works will somehow impress God after what His only Son did for you?

Can you see why Paul asked who had bewitched them?

In all honesty it was their own pride and imagination that led them to believe that they could add to what Jesus had done.

It is the same today.

We engage in religious works of one kind or another to try to pressure or make God do something.

The work of Christ on the cross is a finished work. Everything that needed to be done has been done.

Our lack comes simply from relying on our own works and our own strength.

Zechariah 4:6

So he answered and said to me: “This is the word of the LORD to Zerubbabel: ‘Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit,’ Says the LORD of hosts.

It seems like we always want to help God.

We forget that Jesus is the author and finisher of our faith. (Heb. 12:2) He is the one that started it and He is the one that will develop and finish it.

I think it is time for all of us, especially the church in America to get our focus back on Jesus and Him doing the work instead of looking for the next latest and greatest man-made plan to win the world.



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Pastor Duke Taber

Pastor Duke Taber has been a believer in Jesus for 35 years. He has been a pastor for over 20 years currently serving at Mid-Peninsula Vineyard Christian Church In San Carlos CA. and was formerly the secretary treasurer of White Pine County Ministerial Association. He is an alumnus of LIFE Bible College and Multnomah Biblical Seminary.
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