In my last post, I talked about Paul’s illustration using Abraham’s two sons. We saw that Ishmael, born into slavery, was Paul’s example of viewing the Law as our covenant. He’s adamant that we were saved into freedom.
But the Jerusalem that is above is free, and she is our mother. For it is written: “Be glad, O barren woman, who bears no children; break forth and cry aloud, you who have no labor pains; because more are the children of the desolate woman than of her who has a husband.”
Paul explains to us that our spiritual mother, the one that birthed us into God’s family, is the Jerusalem from above. We also know it as the New Jerusalem that Christ is preparing for us. But how can a city be our mother? To answer that, we need to look way ahead to the book of Revelation.
This is what the Apostle John describes as taking place after the Judgment Seat of Christ.
Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband.
He talks about the New Jerusalem as the bride of Christ. It should be obvious that Jesus isn’t marrying a city. It’s the inhabitants of that city who are the bride of Christ.
In the same way, Paul is not talking about the physical city being our mother. The Jerusalem that is above is referring to the bride. We were brought into the family of God by those who were fulfilling their calling.
A member of the bride of Christ spoke the Word of God to us. When we heard this Good News, faith was birthed in our hearts. We then responded by accepting Jesus Christ as our Savior and Lord. In that sense, the New Jerusalem is our mother.
Because we were birthed through faith in the Word, we are born into the freedom of Christ.
Now you, brothers, like Isaac, are children of promise.
When we accepted Christ we were born by the Spirit of God into the promise. What promise? The same promise that Isaac was born into.
Now that the addendum of the Law has been fulfilled by Christ, we are under the renewed covenant of Abraham. We are now entitled to all the blessings that were promised to his family. If you don’t believe it, then let me remind you of what Paul already told the Galatian church just a few paragraphs before this.
If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.
Don’t let anyone try to tell you that you’re still obligated to follow the Law. My blessings are not contingent upon my performance. They’re based on God’s love for me and my family relationship with Him.
Having said that, we understand that we’re in a covenant relationship with Christ. Therefore, I want to spend quality time with Him through the Holy Spirit. I want to know Him in a deeper way. I want the Spirit to make me more and more like the Lord. In this way, I can experience all the blessings that Christ purchased for me.
Question: Why do some people seem to be so attracted to the Law?
© Nick Zaccardi 2017