The Sufficiency of Christ: Galatians 4:8-11
“8) However at that time, when you did not know God, you were slaves to those which by nature are no gods. 9) But now that you have come to know God, or rather to be known by God, how is it that you turn back again to the weak and worthless elemental things, to which you desire to be enslaved all over again? 10) You observe days and months and seasons and years. 11) I fear for you, that perhaps I have labored over you in vain.” Galatians‬ ‭4:8-11‬ ‭
In these verses, Paul was expressing his genuine concern for the churches of Galatia. They had started well in their understanding of the gospel and the freedom it brings from keeping the ceremonial law, but they had started embracing legalism again.
They were turning back to observing every detail of the Law. They had put themselves back under the obligation to keep the entire Jewish religious calendar with every ceremony, religious rite, sacrifice and self purification ritual. They were moving back into slavery to the Law.
They had lost sight of the fact that Jesus Christ had fulfilled the Law. He was the final sacrifice. He atoned for the sins of humanity once and for all. Nothing was lacking or insufficient with His sacrifice for the sins of humanity. Going back to the rituals of the Law was an expression of confusion about the gospel.
Make no mistake, Paul was fighting for the truth of the gospel. They claimed to believe in Christ, but they were living in denial of the total sufficiency of Christ to reconcile man to God.
Paul was arguing that returning to the ceremonies of keeping the Law was a denial and distortion of the gospel. When the schoolmaster of the Law pointed people to faith in Christ, it’s job was done. It was time to step into Sonship and embrace being a child of God.
They were moving backwards. They were embroiled in religious confusion. They were no longer embracing Jesus Christ as their sole basis of salvation. They had lost the sufficiency of Christ to save to the uttermost those who believe in Him.
Daily Bible Commentary By Terry Baxter: Cofounder of GoServ Global