jesus comma or jesus period?
"It was for liberty that Christ freed us. So stand firm, and do not take on yourselves the yoke of slavery a second time!" —Galatians 5:1
Paul told the Galatians that they had taken on themselves the yoke of slavery a second time. He was so upset he said the Galatians had lost their minds and fallen under a spell (Gal 3:1). Paul accused them of putting him back into labor pains (Gal 4:19) and said they had severed themselves from Christ and fallen from God's favor (Gal 5:4).
What did the Galatians do to throw themselves back into slavery? Were they alcoholic, drug-addicted, bitter, unforgiving, or compulsive? No, the Galatians returned to slavery by believing that both Christ and circumcision were necessary for salvation.
Many people believe in Jesus, but Jesus plus something else — Jesus plus a job, Jesus plus money in the bank, or Jesus plus insurance. When our freedom is based on Jesus plus, we have become slaves. When our freedom is based on Jesus period, we are free at last. "If the Son frees you, you will really be free" (Jn 8:36). "Only in God is my soul at rest; from Him comes my salvation. He only is my Rock and my Salvation, my Stronghold; I shall not be disturbed at all" (Ps 62:2-3).
When we think we need something or someone in addition to Jesus, we are doomed to slavery. Jesus has it all. "Absolute fullness [resides] in Him" (Col 1:19). Freedom is in Jesus alone.
Prayer: Jesus, Bread of life, I believe that You alone provide for all my needs.
Promise: "Just as Jonah was a sign for the Ninevites, so will the Son of Man be a sign for the present age." —Lk 11:30
Praise: When Joan repented of her need for approval, she saw a new outpouring of God's love.
Reference: (For a related teaching, order our tape Jesus, the Redeemer on audio AV 50-3 or video V-50.)
Rescript: †Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, April 6, 2010
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