Galatians 3:26 For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.
27 For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.
28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.
29 And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.
In spite of the lack of faith that the saints in Galatia were expressing, God assured them that they were still the children of God. The reason they were children of God is because their faith was in Christ Jesus. A weak Christian is still a Christian.
Those who are saved by faith in Christ Jesus have eternal life. These saints needed to get beyond their current doubts. They needed to reject the false teaching of the Judaizers. They needed to remember they were not saved by works and they could never be saved by works.
It is important here to note that the saints in Galatia could not remain in their state of doubt. They had to turn from that to trusting the Gospel completely. God had directed Paul to speak very plainly and very clearly about the wickedness of the Judaizers. He had also pointed out the foolishness of the saints in choosing to give licence to this wickedness. The saints needed to believe God alone.
In verse 27 Paul used the term “baptized”. Biblical baptism is always by immersion. Water baptism is a picture of what has already happened in the heart of the recipient of the baptism.
In our text, Paul is not referring to water baptism. He is speaking of being “baptized into Christ”. He is talking of the gift of salvation. The saved person has submitted themselves to the authority of the true God and the Lord Jesus Christ, the eternal Son of God. They have died to self. Repentance is a turning to God and leaving the old life behind. The sinner does not have the power to leave the old life behind on his own. He needs the power of God to do that. That is why the repentant sinner turns to God. God gives him the power to leave the old life behind. (I am not talking of the Calvinist heresy here. I am talking true Biblical faith). As the repentant sinner turns to God, he is also looking to His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, the second person of the Godhead, as his personal Saviour. Thus in our text, Paul speaks of “baptized into Christ”. The repentant sinner trusts fully in the shed blood of the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation. He or she puts no hope in self. It is important to teach this. It is important to hear this.
II Corinthians 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
The Galatian saints had been made new creatures in Christ. They needed to be reminded of what that means. Paul was not trying to convince habitual sinners that they were saved. He was directed by God to remind truly repentant sinners that they were new creatures in Christ. They did not become new creatures by works. They became new creatures by faith in Jesus Christ.
Thus Paul stated that those who have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. Becoming a Christian is not a passive event. The repentant sinner has a part in that salvation. He must receive it and he must put on Christ. God does not force Himself upon anyone. Jesus Christ does not force Himself upon anyone. That is why Paul stated:
Acts 20:21 Testifying both to the Jews, and also to the Greeks, repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.
That is not works salvation. That is accepting God’s way of salvation. The repentant sinner does not fight against identifying with the Lord Jesus Christ. He embraces Jesus Christ. He wants all of Him. He wants all there is to have in salvation.
In verse 28 we are reminded that salvation is not restricted to a certain nationality. You notice here again that nothing is said of skin colour. We have mentioned many times that the “race card” is an evolutionary term. God looks at people according to their nationality. He speaks here of Jew or Greek.
The Jews were given the law. They rejected the Law-Giver, and chose to remain in bondage. A few of them would be saved, but most wanted nothing to do with God’s salvation. It also does not matter whether a person is a slave owner or a slave. It does not matter whether the person is a business owner or an employee of the business owner. It also does not matter whether a person is male or female. You notice here as well that there are only two genders. The foolishness of our present age is wickedness. True Christians reject that whole mess. We do not entertain that evil. We speak plainly and with love. Those who want to tiptoe around the sodomite agenda hate those people. Those who love them tell them the truth. They know that the only hope for all sinners is Jesus Christ.
Paul stated that those who are saved, are all one in Christ Jesus. He is the unifying factor. This does not support the universal church heresy. It also does not support the “invisible” church idea. The saints in Galatia met somewhere. They received this letter and read it somewhere. They were challenged to be seen as true saints. They were identifiable. They met together somewhere and they were required to be a light in their corporate meetings as well as in their individual lives and interactions with others.
The devil is busy attacking Jesus’ promise of Matthew 16:18. Those who claim there are no good churches anymore, are making Jesus Christ a liar. He declared that He would build His church upon Himself and the gates of hell “shall not prevail against it”. That is His promise for this dispensation. It is true that there are many false churches. It is required of godly pastors that they teach the whole counsel of God and part of that is exposing the heresies of our time. We cannot put our heads in the sand and act as if all is good. Too many people are being swept up with the heresies. The truth shall make you free. There is a cost to speaking the truth. It is not appreciated. However, it will set you free.
In verse 28 we see that little word “if” again. There needs to be that examination taking place. Those who are truly saved are Christ’s. They belong to Him. They must be taught that they have submitted themselves to His salvation and to His rule. He is their Lord. Those who are Christ’s are of the seed of Abraham. They are the heirs according to the promise, not according to their works.
What a great blessing in being settled in God’s salvation. The Galatian saints had stumbled. They were being rebuked. They were being taught. They needed to respond according the the new man they had become. The true saints would do that. The frauds would fight against it.