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." NIV translation

In chapter four, Paul explained the fact that we are sons of God through our relationship with Jesus Christ. He begins, here, by explaining that Jesus has set us free from a religious system as nothing else is required for us to have that relationship. He strongly urges the Galatian believers to remain in that relationship and not turn back to a religious system that is, in fact, slavery.

This may seem like strong words (and they are) because the situation is critical. Paul has walked us through the process of being saved by grace and now he is trying to get us to see that, if you try to add anything else to grace, you no longer have grace. A bird in a gilded (pretty) cage is still in a cage and not flying or walking in liberty.

Paul was dealing with a situation in which some "leaders" (Judaizers) had tried to add obedience to the Ten Commandments as a requirement for salvation. The same type of thing happens in the "church" today but it is more subtle. Many "leaders" will preach grace until you do something that they do not like and, at that point, they will haul out the Ten Commandments and try to apply them to your situation. 

The simple fact of the matter is that they do not apply to us as we are saved by grace. If you say that to those "leaders", then, they will haul out the phrase "falling from grace" and try to tell you that you have lost your salvation. As we shall see, that is not what the phrase means and they need to examine themselves and their walk with Christ.

Has this happened to you in the past? If so, you can share your story with us and help others through a similar situation.

Galatians 5:2 & 3

"Mark my words! I, Paul, tell you that if you let yourselves be circumcised, Christ will be of no value to you at all. Again I declare to every man who lets himself be circumcised that he is obligated to obey the whole law." NIV translation

Here, Paul gives us the true meaning of "falling from grace". When he says that "Christ will be of no value to you at all", he is talking about the fact that God's grace is sufficient. You either accept that grace for salvation or you try to work at it on your own (you cannot have both grace and works). If you choose to follow laws for justification, then, you must perfectly obey them as Jesus did. You "fall from grace" when it becomes about your work instead of Jesus' work on the cross.