The Tie That Binds
Galatians 3:26, “For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.”
In October of 2011 I had the opportunity to travel to Romania with a small group of men and preach to various groups in and around Bucharest. The highlight of that trip, at least for me, was singing familiar hymns, although in a different language, in small Baptist church on the campus of a small Bible college in Bucharest. The hymns that were sung that Saturday night and Sunday morning were all hymns that we recognized, but they were being sung in Romanian of course. Despite the differences in language and background, we sang the great hymns of the faith together as one and we sang them robustly. What united us was not the music, but our shared “faith in Christ Jesus.”
I thought of this a few days back as I sat and listened to Voddie Bauchum preach at the Truth Matters conference at Grace Community Church in southern California. We live in a time of deep division in our broader culture and tragically within the evangelical community. Why is this? Because significant segments of the church today have abandoned the sufficiency of Scripture and instead are unwittingly adopting the ways of the world to solve problems. There are indeed great problems in our world, in our society, but all those problems have one thing in common… sin. The inequality that some face and have faced in our country is the result of sin. The sexual abuse scandals that have rocked the church are at their root not the result of complementarianism, but they are a sin problem. The only solution to the problem of sin is Jesus Christ and His Word.
Paul gives us clarity here in verse 26 by reminding us that in “Christ Jesus” we are all one and the same. Whatever problems we may face they all have one thing in common and that is they are sinful. The great anecdote to sin is Jesus Christ.
Paul continues here in verse 26 that “you are all sons of God.” Every human being in a general sense is a son of God because God the Father is the creator of all people. All people, red, yellow, black, and white are not only precious in His sight but they are made in His image. Voddie said this past week that there is no such thing as race. There are different ethnicities, different groups of people, but we are all genetically pretty much the same. God designed us this way, but we have been deceived by well-meaning people to think that we are different. As a fifty year old white man I may look different than much of the world’s population but the reality is that there really isn’t a difference.
Paul continues in verse 26 and he makes it very clear that in Christ we are one. He says that we are all “sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.” If one repents of their sins and believes in Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior, they are a child of God along with every other child of God in the world. This means there is no such thing as a black-Christian, a white-Christian, female Christian. This means that at that moment the man made barriers come down. This is why when we were in Romania there was no difference between our Romanian brothers and sisters and us. We are all part of the same family.
Paul continues in Galatians 3 and says in verse 27, “For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ.” You now have a new set of clothes, you don’t look the same as you used do and you don’t dress up in those old ratty clothes. “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” The solution to the divisions in the church is not more study groups, the solution is not bringing in outside experts to help with these problems, the solution is not the massaging of Scripture to make it say what we want it to say. The solution is to preach God’s Word, both in season and out, and to let God do His Work of regeneration in the lives of lost sinners. Every problem we face is at its root a sin problem and the only solution to that is the blood of Jesus Christ.