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Christian Freedom

The High Cost Of Legalism

Dr. Warren W. Wiersbe | November 13, 1977

Selected highlights from this sermon

Many Christians are scared to live by grace. But in Galatians 5, Paul warns the Galatians not to fall back into legalism. If we live according to legalism, God must deal with us according to the law. But, if we live under grace, we can gain all that Christ died to give us.

Transcripts for Dr. Wiersbe's sermons are forthcoming. Below is an outline of his message.

Many Christians enjoy arguing doctrine but don’t enjoy applying doctrine.

Many Christians are scared to live by grace.

Paul is warning the Galatians to not go back into legalism.

Four pictures that illustrate the losses we incur under the law:

-       A prisoner under the law loses his liberty (Galatians 5:1).

  • There is bondage under the law.
  • Jesus offers a yoke of love and grace.
  • Jesus was cursed in order to redeem us.
  • If you measure your spirituality by certain laws, you aren’t spiritual at all.
  • Don’t let anyone rob you of your liberty in Christ, your freedom to become all that God wants you to be.
  • God wants us to be delivered from bondage.

-       A debtor under the law loses his wealth (Galatians 5:2-6).

  • God cannot enrich us under the law.
  • Grace means that God gives us what we don’t deserve.
  • Grace is an acronym: God’s Riches At Christ’s Expense.
  • If we live under the law, we step out of the sphere of grace.
  • If we live under the law, God must deal with us under the law instead of through grace.
  • The gift of grace includes the Spirt, hope, faith, righteousness, love.

-       A runner under the law loses his progress (Galatians 5:7-8).

  • To go back to legalism means to go back to immaturity.
  • Obey the truth of the gospel.
  • Don’t let something distract you with a detour so that you end up missing the end of the race.

-       A baker under the law loses his spiritual influence.

  • In the Bible, leaven is a picture of evil.
  • A little bit of yeast leavens the whole lump just as a little false doctrine can corrupt many Christians.
  • As yeast grows it produces poison and puffs people up.

The legalist is always jealous of the Christian who lives under grace.

Living under grace means we have liberty to grow in Christ, we have wealth, we make progress, and we have spiritual influence.

Live under grace, and we can gain all that Christ died to give us.

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