This series of posts is looking into what was the “it” in Jesus’ declaration from the cross, “It is finished.”
As we continue to journey through Scripture to see what has been accomplished through Jesus, our next stop is another promise from God. This time the promise is made to Abraham. Just as with God’s promise to Adam and Eve, we are once again the beneficiaries.
Let’s look at the original promise, and then look at what it means for us. We first a counter this promise in Genesis 18:
“The Lord said, ‘Shall I hide from Abraham what I am about to do, seeing that Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him? For I have chosen him, that he may command his children and his household after him to keep the way of the Lord by doing righteousness and justice, so that the Lord may bring to Abraham what he has promised him.’” ~ Genesis 18:17-19
It continues in Genesis 22:
“I will surely bless you, and I will surely multiply your offspring as the stars of heaven and as the sand that is on the seashore. And your offspring shall possess the gate of his enemies, and in your offspring shall all the nations of the earth be blessed, because you have obeyed my voice.” ~ Genesis 22:17-18
The Apostle Paul spends a lot of time in his letter to the believers in Galatia (and to us) revealing why this promise is so important and how this promise found it’s fulfillment in Christ.
“Does he who supplies the Spirit to you and works miracles among you do so by works of the law, or by hearing with faith— just as Abraham “believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness”? Know then that it is those of faith who are the sons of Abraham. And the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel beforehand to Abraham, saying, “In you shall all the nations be blessed.” So then, those who are of faith are blessed along with Abraham, the man of faith.
…so that in Christ Jesus the blessing of Abraham might come to the Gentiles, so that we might receive the promised Spirit through faith.
Now the promises were made to Abraham and to his offspring. It does not say, “And to offsprings,” referring to many, but referring to one, “And to your offspring,” who is Christ. This is what I mean: the law, which came 430 years afterward, does not annul a covenant previously ratified by God, so as to make the promise void. For if the inheritance comes by the law, it no longer comes by promise; but God gave it to Abraham by a promise.
And if you are Christ, then you are Abraham’s offspring, heirs according to promise.” ~ Galatians 3:5-9, 14, 16-18, 29
In a word, another thing Christ finished is our “blessing.” As a Gentile this is amazing. The Bible is clear that the Jewish nation is God’s chosen people. What is revealed here is, that through Christ’s finished work, we Gentiles also receive the promised blessing of God.
Today’s Good News is that if you are in Christ – through believing in Him – you are blessed! It does not say you will be blessed IF… It says you are blessed (period!). And what is our blessing – nothing short of Christ’s Spirit living within us.
Paul goes on to write…
“Tell me, you who desire to be under the law, do you not listen to the law? For it is written that Abraham had two sons, one by a slave woman and one by a free woman. But the son of the slave was born according to the flesh, while the son of the free woman was born through promise.
Now you, brothers, like Isaac, are children of promise.
So, brothers, we are not children of the slave but of the free woman.
For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.” ~ Galatians 4:21-23, 28, 31; 5:1
Jesus’ finished work sets us free! Really free! We are free to do whatever we want. I know some begin to shy away from this radical grace statement, but there’s no need. It doesn’t need a caveat. When our hearts are truly gripped with the love that has been lavished upon us to set us free, then we won’t take advantage of the One who loved us this way. Our “want to” will change, and we will do what Paul writes in Galatians 5:
“For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another. For the whole law is fulfilled in one word: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” ~ Galatians 5:13-14
There it is; another accomplishment of Christ’s finished work is we are sons and daughters who have inherited the promise God made to Abraham – that we are blessed and set free to love the people around us! And, that’s really Good News!
Bonus – if you want to understand why being called “sons” is good news for both males and females, read this short article.
More writing here – https://shatteredbythegospel.com/
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