28 There is no Jew or Greek, slave or free, male and female; since you are all one in Christ Jesus.
In recent years we have witnessed a growing number of people crying out for respect and recognition. It has seemed that each month there is a new group of people who say they have been a victim of either racism or sexism. Without a doubt, injustices toward different races, nationalities and genders have sinfully existed. But let me ask you: I am the only one who thinks this crying out has become more hostile and even more demanding than ever before?
The Jewish Law in Paul’s day required separation between individuals and nations and between various kinds of food and animals. There were even some who thought they were entitled because of their ethnicity to receive a righteous standing before God.
But in this verse, Paul demonstrates an important distinction the gospel has provided: no more religious priority to any one person. Yes, there are distinct ethnic differences between a Greek and a Jew. There are distinct differences between a person who is in bondage to one who lives free. And lastly, there are God-created physical differences between a male and a female. But these differences do not make one superior to the other.
Here is where the gospel removed the limitation that the Law could never allow: all believers in Christ are equally significant and loved by God. Paul beautifully illustrates our common status in Christ in verse 27, where he says that all people who are believers in Christ have put on Christ like a garment. In Roman culture, when a youth became of age, he was given a special toga to wear. This toga indicated he was a grown-up son and admitted him to the full rights of the family.
Unfortunately, men and women today who have not experienced the life-changing Spirit of Christ in their lives cannot receive the due love and respect they crave. But their hearts and voices cry out “Love me!” or “Listen to me!” They need someone to tell them of the God who created them and loves them and who desires all peoples to come to Him and live in intimate fellowship with Him.
Questions to Ask Yourself
- How does your view of equality compare with what Paul wrote in Galatians 3?
- Has your faith ever given you thoughts of superiority?
- What can you and I do to accept differences in people and yet love them as they are?
Show your child several photos of people—some that look very much like people in your own family, and some that look very different. Ask your child which person/people from the photos God loves most. Guide your child to understand that God loves each one of the people in these photos the same. No matter how someone looks or where they are from, they are dearly loved by God.
Read Galatian 3:28 aloud, explaining that the church—the body of Christ—is made up of people from all races and backgrounds, and each one of them is just as valued and loved by God as the others.
Spend some time praying for people around the world who have not yet come to know the love of Christ, thanking God that He loves each one of those people, and asking Him to show them His great love for them.
Pray for the International Leadership Coalition, a ministry partner of our church. Pray for international Christian leaders to be identified and equipped through the ministry of the ILC to lead healthy churches in all people groups living in Middle Tennessee.