Galatians 2:15–21 (ESV)
Justified by Faith
15 We ourselves are Jews by birth and not Gentile sinners;
16 yet we know that a person is not justified by works of the law but through faith in Jesus Christ, so we also have believed in Christ Jesus, in order to be justified by faith in Christ and not by works of the law, because by works of the law no one will
17 But if, in our endeavor to be justified in Christ, we too were found to be sinners, is Christ then a servant of sin? Certainly not! 18 For if I rebuild what I tore down, I prove myself to
be a transgressor. 19 For through the law I died to the law, so that I might live to God. 20 I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God,
who loved me and gave himself for me. 21 I do not nullify the grace of God, for if righteousness were through the law, then Christ died for no purpose.
Today’s reading has a theological core in belief:
“a person is not justified by works of the law but through faith in Jesus Christ.” This is a core belief in te Ephesians letter and it is the same today. Another famous phrase is found in today’s reading: “I have been crucified
with Christ. It is no long I who live, but Christ who lives in me.” This seems to be an ongoing issue as found in the Ephesians Letter. What does it mean to be justified? To be justified means that a judge declares you legally
innocent from all charges. Now think of it this way. You are on trial for crimes you did commit and you know that you are guilty. You know that you deserve the death penalty. Yet for some unforseen reason, the Judge makes a bold move
and declares you to be legally innocent of all charges and you get to walk free... even though you know that you are guilty. In Christianity, God is the Judge and he declares you as righteous through Jesus life, death, and resurrection on the cross.
You are guilty, but God sets you free. The unforseen reason is simply his love for you.
I pray: O Lord, I stand before you and repent of my sins. I know what I have done and what I deserve.
But you, O Lord, full of grace and mercy, you forgive me of my sins and declare that I am righteous. Thank you Lord for you love, grace, and mercy. Amen.