A Short Study of Galatians 5:18

“But if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law.”
(Galatians 5:18)

Many preachers and religious people in our day are saying they are “led by the Spirit.” They use this as a reason for believing as they believe and doing as they do. But this one thing I know, the Spirit of God does not lead anyone contrary to the Word of God. What these people believe and do cannot be by the leadership of the Spirit of God because it is in direct opposition to the Scriptures. Our Lord said of the Holy Spirit that He would send, “Howbeit when He, the Spirit of truth, is come, He will guide you into all truth: for He shall not speak of Himself; but whatsoever He shall hear, that shall He speak: and He will shew you things to come. He shall glorify Me: for He shall receive of Mine, and shall shew it unto you” (John 16:13-14). The Holy Spirit leads men to Christ! Since He glorifies Christ, those He leads glorify Christ. They are led by the Spirit to Christ through the truth. He reveals Christ in the hearts of God’s elect by guiding them into all truth. “It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God. Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto Me” (John 6:45). Paul says that if we are led by the Spirit, we “are not under the law.” The Holy Spirit leads men out from under the law by revealing Christ as the One who “hath redeemed us from the curse of the law.” By the Gospel He shows us how that Christ’s blood shed as the payment required for our having broken God’s law satisfied all the claims of divine justice. He reveals the obedience of Christ as having established righteousness before the law on behalf of believers. He leads us from the ground of our trying to establish righteousness before God to faith in Christ and that righteousness which is by faith. “For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh (our weakness), God sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh; that the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit” (Romans 8:3-4). We naturally, by our flesh, seek to justify ourselves but God’s Spirit leads us to be justified by Christ. Led by the Spirit we know, “Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.” (Romans 10:4)

G. Shepard

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