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Week of October 17, 2010
Galatians 4:21-31 Preparations
Read Galatians, Chapter 4:21-31 Read the study guide and familiarize yourself with the lesson. Make sure you read the “Take Aways” section so you know what the aim of this study is. However, be open to other truths as they may present themselves! Print this guide out so you can have it handy if needed. Pray for your ability to guide and for those in your group!
Catch up/Small talk
Recap and Share
Ask how they would summarize Chapter 4:1-20 from last week.
In last week’s study, Paul told the Galatians that those who believe in what Christ has done for them are an heir to God. That we are known by God and we don’t know God on our own. Also, our faith must lead to our own zealous desire, rather than depending on someone else and their presence to make it happen within us.
Read and Ask
Read Galatians 4:21-31. (Have someone read each section, separated by paragraphs. Go around the group until everyone reads and continue until the end of the chapter.) Ask for some General Observations: If no one gets to these on their own, here are some great questions to get things rolling… o How does this connect with the first part of Chapter 4? Paul takes
the idea of being a slave further, relating it back to Abraham.
o What does Paul seem to be doing in this Chapter? Giving the
Galatians a better understanding of the distinction between slavery and freedom.
Chapter 4:21-27 – Born of a Slave or Born of a Promise?
(Recap from last week) How is a child different than a slave? What do you think? A slave has no rights. A slave is not an heir. A son has rights to the
father’s blessings. He is an heir.
When Paul says “law” what does he mean here? The law refers to the Old
Do you think that the Galatians were being taught all of the law (Old Testament) or just parts of it? Obviously, they were only being taught certain parts of it.
Paul wanted to make it clear what else was written there.
V. 23: What do you think the difference between “born in the ordinary way” and “born as a result of a promise” is?
Read Genesis 16 – We read here Hagar’s story. A natural birth to a son, named Ishmael. He was a son who was born of a slave. What is a slave?
Read Genesis 21:1-8 – Now we read Sarah’s story. God came to fulfill a promise. Sarah has an unnatural, supernatural birth of a son, Isaac. Why was it supernatural?
Read Genesis 18:10 – Here we see God’s promise. And Sarah’s reaction to it. Why did she doubt? Because she was so old. She didn’t think it possible,
Here is a chart1 to help show the distinction. Hagar is the bond women Ishmael was born naturally The old covenant The earthly Jerusalem Judaism Sarah is the free woman Isaac was born supernaturally The new covenant The heavenly Jerusalem Christianity
Are you seeing the distinction here? How cool is this? V. 27: What do you think this reference to Isaiah 54:1 means?
Chapter 4:28-31 – The Slave to the Law does not Stay in the Household
V. 28: If you are “saved”, do you think you have had a supernatural “birth”? As in born again? V. 29: Would you classify yourself as one living in legalism or in liberty? Essentially, slave or free? What does God say you should live as? Read Genesis 21:8-10 – Why would Abraham cast them out of his household? V. 30: Do you see the connection here? V. 31: Are you a heir of slavery (law) or an heir or supernatural liberty (freedom/grace)?
Taken from Dr. Constable’s notes on Galatians. www.soniclight.com/constable/notes.htm
The Old Testament is paramount to helping us understand scripture! God gives a barren woman a pregnancy. Basically, God does incredible things outside our own natural systems. He does whatever He wants! It is important to get the full understanding of something before you begin to build your life around it. (Ex. living under the law or grace) If we believe in what God has done, we are under a promise, not the law! We need not focus on what we are and are not doing early on in our walk with God. We need to focus more on our identity as a supernatural heir to His promise! Liberty does NOT mean we do whatever we want. Liberty means we are free from bondage. Free from judgment. And free to live a gracious and full life!
Questions for Reflection
Is there anyone that you are listening to right now that isn’t pointing you to truth? (This might not even be a person.) If you believe in what God has done for you, do you live as an heir to a promise or as a slave? Do you trust Him to do what He wants, whether incredible or not? What can you do to help you understand the truth of God’s word? Are you more into legalism or liberty?
Thank them for coming. Remind them of next week and what time. Let them know that they can invite someone else to join if they want. Pray or take prayer requests.