Today's Foundations Devotional: By faith

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Memory verse:

This is the only thing I want to find out from you: did you receive the

Spirit by the works of the Law, or by hearing with faith? (Galatians 3:2)

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This question of how the gift of the Holy Spirit is received had apparently been raised among the Christian churches in Galatia, and Paul makes several references to it.

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? (Gal. 3:2).

Therefore He who supplies the Spirit to you ... does He do it by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith? (Gal. 3:5).

... that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith (Gal. 3:14).

Three times, therefore, in these few verses Paul emphasises that the receiving of the Spirit is by faith. In other words, the essential preparation for believers to receive the Holy Spirit is that they be instructed out of the Scriptures on the nature of God’s provision for them and how they may claim this provision through faith in the redemptive work of Christ on the cross. If this kind of scriptural instruction is first given and received with faith by those seeking the Holy Spirit, there should be no need for great effort or delay in their receiving the gift.

Paul’s epistle to the Galatians implies that the Christians there had originally received from him with faith the message of the gospel and the gift of the Holy Spirit, and had thus entered into the fullness of God’s provision for them. Later, however, through other teachers, they had become involved in a legalistic system superimposed upon this gospel foundation and had begun to lose their first vision of the receiving of God’s gift by grace through faith.

One main purpose of Paul’s epistle is to warn them of the dangers of this and to call them back to the original simplicity of their faith.

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Prayer:

Thank You Father for always keeping me in the simplicity of receiving faith

and the power of Your Holy Spirit through faith ... I want to simply trust the

abundance of Your grace based on my faith in You and continuous working

of Your Spirit in me. Amen.

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