Opening summary and insights
There are two laws which apply to the inhabitants of earth.
The question which arises in this book is, "How is a man to be justified?"
The answer begins in earnest in Chapter 2:16. Men are found to be sinners. They walk not upright according to the truth of the Gospel. "Man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ,.." It states there that, "by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified."
What does "to be justified" mean? It has to do with being rendered righteous, holy, pure, clean, innocent from sin. It has to do with the idea that we cannot pay for our sins by anything we can do by works or paying our debt to be rendered innocent.
A most important truth is in Chapter 2:21. "I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain." He died for us, as a substitute. He made payment for the wages of sin that those who be in Him might be justified.
There is a difference between one who is in bondage and one who is free. Chapters 4 and 5 explain this and how it is that a believer must walk if he is faithful.
The result of this leads to the provision of Chapter 1:3 where Paul is able to say, Grace be in you and peace, from God the Father, and from our Lord Jesus Christ.
Galatians 6:2 suggests that we are to "fulfil the law of Christ instead."
Chapter 1 Outline - Grace and Peace,
The Gospel and its source as it is presented here.
Chapter 2 Outline - Hoping to gain righteousness
by entering into the works of the law is futile. One
is only justified by exercising faith in Jesus Christ.
Chapter 3 Outline - The previous chapter closed
with, "if righteousness come by the law, then
Christ is dead in vain." This chapter opens asking,
"Received ye the Spirit by the workds of the law,
or by the hearing of faith? It concludes that doing
the works of the law profits one nothing. Faith
makes one a child of Abraham. The law brings a
curse upon all doers of it. Only Christ redeems us
from such curse. Our inheritance is not by the law.
3:19 and following tells what the purpose of the
Chapter 4 Outline - This chapter begins discussing
the difference between the heir of righteousness
and the servant of the law. Some confuse the
difference between the heir's child and the placing
of that one as a son.
Chapter 5 Outline - It is the son who has liberty
from the yoke of bondage. He is no longer a
debtor to do the law. Then is a discussion of living
according to the flesh and living according to the
Spirit. It illustrates our identity.
Chapter 6 Outline - The concluding imperative is
that one walk as fulfilling the law of Christ and do
so according to being a new creature.
Expanded and updated 2013-01-31