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Pastor Lukus Counterman
Sun, Jun 07, 2015
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44 mins 31 secs
Speaker: Lukus Counterman - Paul gloried in the cross because Christ’s sacrifice on the cross is the source of his and every believer’s righteousness and acceptance before God. The cross brought an end to the hopeless frustration of pursuing God through works. In the cross, we discover that God “made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf that we might become the righteousness of God in Him” (2Cor. 5:21). Christians honor and even boast in the cross because Christ’s sacrifice there provided redemption and eternal life, making it the supreme symbol of the gospel. To truly know the meaning of the cross, you must first know the One who died there. May God help us to see, receive, and praise the Savior who was crucified for us.
Pastor Lukus Counterman
Sun, May 31, 2015
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47 mins 7 secs
Speaker: Lukus Counterman - We reap what we sow. If we are faithful and conscientious in our sowing, then we can confidently expect a good harvest. On the other hand, Job tells us that if we plough evil and sow trouble, we’ll reap it (Job. 4:8). In the closing section of Galatians, Paul has a few final admonitions. At first glance they appear to be very loosely connected or perhaps even disconnected. But the link that ties them together is the great principle of sowing and reaping. It is a principle of order and consistency written into all of life. May the Lord help us to sow in the field of the Spirit and thereby reap life through him. May the Lord help us receive his truth and live accordingly as we examine Galatians 6:6-10.
Pastor Lukus Counterman
Sun, May 17, 2015
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43 mins 50 secs
Speaker: Lukus Counterman - The first and great evidence of our walking by the Spirit or being filled with the Spirit is not some private mystical experience of our own, but our practical relationships of love with other people. Since the first fruit of the Spirit is love, this is only logical. But it is easy to talk about “love” in an abstract and general way; it is much harder to get down to concrete, particular situations in which we actually demonstrate our love for one another. Paul takes time in Galatians 5:25-6:5 to see the practical out-workings of love for those who are walking by the Spirit. May the Lord help us to love not in word or tongue, but in deed and truth by the power of his Spirit.
Pastor Lukus Counterman
Sun, May 10, 2015
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52 mins 17 secs
Speaker: Lukus Counterman - The main emphasis of the second half of Galatians is that in Christ, life is liberty. We were in bondage under the curse or condemnation of the law, but Christ has set us free from it. We were slaves of sin, but now we are God’s children. Yet each time Paul writes of liberty he adds a warning that it can very easily be lost. Some relapse from liberty into bondage (Gal. 5:1); others turn their liberty into license (Gal. 5:13). This was Paul’s theme in the beginning of chapter five. He has emphasized that true Christian liberty expresses itself in self-control, loving service, and obedience to God. The question now is, how are these things possible? And the answer is, by the Holy Spirit. He alone can keep us truly free.
Pastor Lukus Counterman
Sun, May 03, 2015
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53 mins 50 secs
Speaker: Lukus Counterman - The false teachers in the Galatian churches were saying that Christian converts had to be circumcised. You might think that it was a trivial matter, but Paul indicates that there were doctrinal implications associated with it. Circumcision was not merely a physical operation or a ceremonial rite. It was a theological symbol of self-effort in conflict with the grace meted out through the cross. Salvation has never been by good works or law keeping. It has always been by grace through faith in Christ. Paul asserts in Galatians 5:1-15 that you cannot add circumcision (or anything else for that matter) to Christ as necessary for salvation because Christ is sufficient in himself. If you add anything to Christ, you lose Christ. And so Paul calls believers to liberty in the grace of Christ. Not legalism, not license, but liberty directed and empowered by the Holy Spirit.
Pastor Lukus Counterman
Sun, Mar 22, 2015
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51 mins 57 secs
Speaker: Lukus Counterman - Christ’s sacrifice on the cross enables us to have righteousness through faith. By turning to the law in an attempt to gain righteousness through works, the Galatians had “fallen away from grace.” They were turning their backs on what Christ had already secured for them. If they really wanted to earn God’s favor through following rules, they would have to follow them all. The Old Testament law was a comprehensive unit; one part could not be enforced in isolation from the rest of the law. So if the Galatians really wanted to go down this path they would have to follow not just the Ten Commandments, but more than 600 other laws that were handed down by Moses. In Galatians 5, Paul exhorts the churches of Galatia to take hold of the freedom that has been given to them in Christ. He begins with a rallying cry, “For freedom Christ has set us free.” He really wants the Galatians to return to the freedom found in the grace of God and to throw off the slavery of adherence to the law.
Pastor Lukus Counterman
Sun, Mar 15, 2015
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34 mins 40 secs
Speaker: Lukus Counterman - Paul had taught the Galatian Christians that they were fully children of Abraham the moment they believed in Christ. The false teachers however had taught them that they had to submit to all the Old Testament laws to be real children of Abraham. So in Galatians 4:21-31 Paul makes his point in one final dramatic way. He compares Abraham’s two sons and uses allegory and typology to apply spiritual principles of the gospel. Many people today want to be under the law. They are not the Judaizers of Galatians, but rather people who live by religious legalsim. They imagine that the way to God is by observing certain rules. There are even professing Christains who turn the gospel into law. In our text this morning, Paul exposes the inconsistency of legalism. This is a difficult allegorical passage, but its message is right up to date.
Pastor Lukus Counterman
Sun, Feb 22, 2015
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52 mins
Speaker: Lukus Counterman - Until this point, Paul's approach has been confrontational and impersonal. He has been writing like a scholar or debater, marshaling every possible argument and illustration like a scholar or debater, marshaling every possible argument and illustration to get his message across. He has taken the stance of a determined lawyer in court or a learned theologian in the classroom, giving a dispassionate and irrefutable presentation. He has referred to the Old Testament to teach the Galatians the basic truth of the gospel that he had taught them many times before: Salvation is by God's grace through faith alone. He has used both his own experience and that of the Galatians to reinforce his teaching. But for the most part, he has sounded detached, seeming to be more concerned about principles than people. But the apostle's approach changes dramatically in 4:12, moving from the purely doctrinal to the more personal. In fact, Galatians 4:12-20 are Paul's strongest words of personal affection in any of his letters. He does not so much preach or teach as simply pour out his heart in personal exhortation. He writes, in effect, “I care about you more than I can say. I love you dearly just as you have loved me dearly. Please listen what I'm saying, because it's so vitally essential.” As we take a closer look at this passage, may the Lord direct our hearts toward the gospel and rekindle our affections for the one who first shared it with us.
Pastor Lukus Counterman
Sun, Feb 15, 2015
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56 mins 46 secs
Speaker: Lukus Counterman - Imagine someone going to their father and saying, “I would rather be your slave than your child.” Who among us would make such an odd request? Yet that was the folly of the Galatians under the influence of their false teachers. They were preferring slavery under the law over sonship under grace, and so Paul corrects them.1 The way for us to avoid the Galatians’ mistake is to let God’s Word keep telling us what we have and who we are in Christ. As we examine Galatians 3:26-4:7, may the Lord remind us about the means, implications, and resultant joy associated with being sons of God.
Pastor Lukus Counterman
Sun, Feb 01, 2015
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47 mins 29 secs
Speaker: Lukus Counterman - In the flow of Galatians, Paul has established that we are saved, justified, and redeemed only by faith in the gracious work of Christ and not through any righteousness of our own. He has stated and restated the fact that salvation is based on faith, not works of the law. So the natural question that a careful reader would ask at this point in Galatians 3:15-25 is how the law fits. If we are “free from the law,” does that mean we don’t have to obey the law of God?1 If we are always and only saved by Christ’s performance and not our own, why should we strive to live a holy life? Do we have any remaining obligation to keep God’s law in an era of grace? These questions are addressed in the text this morning. May the Lord guide us as we seek to understand God’s promise, God’s law, and a gospel-rooted life.