Daily Devotions


Day 38

"Did you receive the Spirit by the works of the law...?"

Text: Galatians 3:2b


The apostle Paul was a truly gifted teacher. He knew just when he ought to change tack. He approached the issue of salvation (justification) from a different standpoint in this text.

This only I want to learn from you:
Did you receive the Spirit by the works of the law,
or by the hearing of faith?

Galatians 3:2

1. “I want to learn from you”

a) There was a touch of sarcasm here.
b) Paul was a master-teacher.
c) He now uses the basic word “learn”.
i) Let the Galatians be the teachers.
ii) Paul would learn from them.
iii) The word “learn” is the root verbal form of “disciple”.

2. “The Spirit”

The Person of the Holy Spirit.

a) His role is most significant.
b) He is a Seal from God.
c) He is the guarantee of our salvation (Ephesians 1:13-14).

3. Two vitally related questions concerning the receiving of the Holy Spirit

How was He received?

a) By the works of the law?
b) By the hearing of faith?

4. The answer

a) Obviously the keeping of the Law would not result in receiving the Spirit of God.
b) It is by faith that the Spirit of God is received.
i) Faith in the Gospel.
ii) Faith in the Lord Jesus and His death on the cross.
iii) Faith in the above does not set aside the grace of God.
iv) Faith in the above confirms and establishes the grace of God given to all who believe.