Today's Message

Follow along with the latest message from New Life (Oct. 13 | 14, 2018)

Called to be Free (Galatians 5)

Message Summary: In Galatians 5, Paul strives to share with the Christians in Galatia that they were called to something far greater than the law! They were called to freedom! Christ when to the cross for the very purpose of their freedom! So now, it's time to live like free men and women. What exactly does walking in freedom mean? That's what chapter 5 is all about!

Two animals yoked together

Leviticus 26:13

13 I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt so that you would no longer be slaves to the Egyptians; I broke the bars of your yoke and enabled you to walk with heads held high.

Matthew 11:28-30

28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

2nd Corinthians 6:14a,

14 Do not be yoked together with unbelievers.

2nd Corinthians 6:14b

14 …For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness?

Galatians 5:1

It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery. 

Lamentations 1:14

14 “My sins have been bound into a yoke;

Galatians 5:13,

13 You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free.[1]

1.    Free from the guilt of sin because we have experienced God’s forgiveness

Isaiah 1:18

18 “Come now, let us settle the matter,” says the Lord. “Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool.

2.    Free from the penalty of sin because Christ died for us on the cross.

Romans 6:23

23 For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

3.    Free from the power of sin in our daily lives

Galatians 5:16-18

16 So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. 17 For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.

Galatians 5:19-21

19 The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; 20 idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21 and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.

Galatians 5:22-25

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.


Printed Life Group questions can be found at the Life Groups display.


When people follow Christ they receive eternal life, justification, and freedom: freedom from legalism and freedom in Christ. As a result of our freedom in Christ, we should run in freedom through the Spirit and not be yoked again in slavery to legalism.




If you were free to do whatever you wanted for one day, what would you do?


How do you define freedom? How does our culture define freedom?


Freedom is a loaded term in our culture. We take our rights and liberties very seriously, and infringing on those rights are grounds for lawsuits and protests. However, the biblical idea of freedom goes beyond what we associate with civil liberties. True freedom is found in Christ and obedience to His teaching.




Read Galatians 5:1-6


What contrast did Paul draw in this verse? How did he describe slavery? What do you think “the yoke of bondage” symbolized?


What did Paul instruct his readers to do?  About what danger did he warn them?


To what false teaching were the Galatian believers being exposed? How did that false teaching undermine the message of grace? Why would those who accepted circumcision be submitting to a yoke of slavery?


In what ways might believers today be persuaded to abandon grace as the basis of their relationship with God? What legalistic rules do some say we must keep if we wish to get to heaven?


What dire consequences to this legalism did Paul outline in verses 2-4?

 What is our hope of righteousness (v. 5)?  On what does this hope rest? Paul said circumcision really didn’t matter one way or the other. What did he say was the only thing that mattered as we “eagerly wait for the hope of righteousness” (vv. 5-6)?



Read Galatians 5:7-15


What two images did Paul use to warn against false teachings?


What did each symbolize?


How does abusing freedom lead to less freedom?



Read Galatians 5:16-25


 We all have personality traits we like about ourselves. Generally, we like the things other people appreciate about us. When we are saved, the Holy Spirit bestows upon every Christian the Fruit of the Spirit. These nine traits mentioned in our passage today should shape our Christian experience and help others see that we know and have been changed by the Gospel.


What is your favorite part about your personality? What is another part you are working on to change or improve?


In what ways has knowing Christ changed your personality? Look over the list of these nine traits. Which do you notice most in your own life? Which could be manifested in a stronger way?


Do all Christians possess every fruit? Why or why not? How is the fruit of the Spirit like and unlike spiritual gifts?


How is love manifested by the Spirit different than love we see in popular culture? How can you see each of the other eight traits overflowing from love?


Can you think of any verses or individuals from scripture that help you better understand what the fruit of the Spirit looks like when put into action?


What did Paul mean when he wrote, “Against such things there is no law” (v. 23)?


Read Galatians 5:19-21. Compare and contrast the works of the flesh and the works of the Spirit.



How has your relationship with Jesus caused the works of the flesh to decrease and the works of the Spirit to increase?


What does it mean to walk by the Spirit? What does this look like in our daily lives?


Which fruit of the Spirit is least familiar to you? When will you devote some time to studying it in God’s Word this week?


Of these nine traits, which have you particularly seen manifested in the life of another member of this group?


How do we walk with the Spirit daily to make the fruit of the Spirit more present and evident in our lives? How does this impact our evangelistic efforts?




Pray: Ask God to teach you what it means to keep in step with the Spirit every time you pray this week. Thank God for allowing us to know Him and for how our relationship with Him has changed our lives. Pray that the fruit of the Spirit would be clearly seen in everything you do, and that the works of the flesh would be suppressed as we walk by the Spirit.


Memorize: Commit Galatians 5:1 to memory this week. Bring the verse to mind, remembering that Jesus has set you free from sin and death.


Serve: Choose one person in your life to lovingly serve this week. Ask God to strengthen you and humble you as you meet that person’s needs.


Illustrate: Draw what it looks like to live in slavery to sin versus freedom in Christ. Use Galatians to inspire your illustration.


Choose: Pick one of the expressions of the fruit of the Spirit to focus on this week. Pray that God would put you in situations where you can practice growing in that expression of spiritual fruit. Journal about your experience.