Sermon Preview: September 2
One of the reasons legalism is so attractive is because it provides an aura of respectability and protection. In Paul’s final section of his letter to the Galatians, he pierces the facade of legalism and reveals what a true community shaped by the gospel should look like. The new community of God’s grace is not marked by legalism, but by self-giving sacrifice. Join us this Sunday as we consider the structure of “God’s New Community of Grace” from Galatians 6:1-10.
Sermon Preview: August 26
How does God change us? How do we fight against sin? How do we obey God, especially if obedience to God puts us in conflict with the wider culture? In the second half of Galatians 5, Paul gives us the practical steps we need to keep in step with the Spirit.
Sermon Preview: August 12
In this section of Paul’s letter, he uses very familiar characters from the Old Testament to help illustrate the problem the Galatians are facing: rather than living in the supernatural freedom they are entitled to as children of the promise, they are fitting themselves for the chains of slavery to an obsolete covenant. Paul ends this section with a rousing call to live in the freedom Christ has won for us. Heeding that call is just as important in twenty-first-century Austin as it was in first-century Galatia. Join us this Sunday to discover why.
Sermon Preview: August 5
Paul has tried everything he can think of to turn the Galatians back from the tragic error they were making. He told them of his own conversion to Christ. He has argued with them on the basis of biblical history and theology. He has even used examples from everyday life. This week, we turn to Galatians 4:8-20 to read his most personal appeal. With emotionally laden language, Paul addresses his former church with the affection of a mother and the heart of a pastor. Join us this Sunday as we consider Paul’s personal appeal to the church he loves.
Sermon Preview: July 22
For weeks now, we have seen how Paul has hammered at the Galatians’ reliance on the Mosaic Law in addition to faith in Christ for a right standing with God. This week, Paul explains to the Galatians what the Mosaic Law was intended to do. By placing themselves under that Law, Paul argues, the Galatians actually misunderstood the entire purpose of the Law as it was given to Israel. Join us this Sunday as we turn to Galatians 3:15-29, and explore the purpose of the Law then and now.
Sermon Preview: July 8
In Galatians 3, the Apostle Paul puts on the persona of Detective Columbo. Like that old television sleuth, Paul has just one more question for the Galatians: did you receive the Spirit by works of the law or by hearing with faith? Their answer will tell him if they understand the marvelous truth that the gospel is for Christians, too. That is, the good news of Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection isn’t just the means to get us into the kingdom of God. It is also the means by which we live the Christian life and are sustained day by day in our sanctification. Join us this Sunday as we dive deeper into Paul’s message of grace in Galatians.
Sermon Preview: July 1
This Sunday, we turn to Galatians 2:1–21, which many theologians recognize as the heart of Paul’s argument. Using his experience with Peter in Antioch as the foil, Paul explains that righteousness before God does not come through law-keeping, but through God’s own work in Christ. God’s faithfulness to his people is the ground for our righteous status. When we misunderstand that and substitute anything that we are or that we do for what God has done in Christ, our hope and confidence in the gospel is shattered. Join us this Sunday as we consider the monumental news: God has justified the ungodly!
Sermon Preview: June 17
Growing up, I would often hear people give their testimonies. Sometimes before baptisms or as part of an evangelistic service, men and women would regale the congregation with stories of sin and worldliness building to a crescendo: the moment they gave their life to Jesus. My testimony was boring. I had never known a day I didn’t believe in God. I struggled with sin, like everyone did, but I believed that Jesus was a savior of sinners. I wondered if something was wrong with me, if I needed a better testimony! In Galatians 1:10-24, Paul begins recalling his testimony for the churches of Galatia. He doesn’t do it to inspire them. He uses God’s work in his life to show them how God must work in their lives if their lives will ever be shaped by the good news of Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection. Join us this Sunday as we consider “The Gospel-Shaped Life.”
Sermon Preview: June 10
We’re one week into a our new sermon series in Galatians. This Sunday, we turn to Paul’s formal charge against the church he planted: they are deserters. They are turning away from the grace of God in Christ and embracing a different gospel altogether. As we learned last week, a group within the church was advocating a “Jesus and” approach: Jesus and the Torah, Jesus and circumcision, Jesus and kosher meals, etc. Paul solemnly warns that anyone who distorts the gospel is under God’s condemnation–they are anathema. Join us this Sunday as we dig deeper into Paul’s charge against the Galatians.
Sermon Preview: June 3
This Sunday, we begin a new summer sermon series through the Book of Galatians. This letter is probably the first that Paul wrote, and is among the earliest books of the New Testament. It foreshadows the conflict in Acts 15 at the Jerusalem Council. It also shows a range of emotions for the Apostle Paul, who is incredulous at heretical developments in the churches he planted in what is now south-central Turkey. In this first sermon, we’ll start with Paul’s appeal to his apostolic authority and summary of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Those two topics are the first principles on which the rest of his argument is based. Join us this Sunday to discover why!