"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." Galatians 5:1
Paul is telling them to not go back to slavery. They'd (and we) have been freed already. Don't go back. Jesus set us free so we would be and stay free. There were people coming from Jerusalem who told the Galatian church members they needed to obey the Mosiac law. They were trying to add to the gospel.
Faith in Christ is our freedom.
"because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you[a] free from the law of sin and death." Romans 8:2
Two Slaveries: Legalism and Sin
"You who are trying to be justified by the law have been alienated from Christ; you have fallen away from grace. 5 For through the Spirit we eagerly await by faith the righteousness for which we hope. 6 For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision has any value. The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love." Galatians 5:4-6
If you're trying to live by rules instead of by Grace and faith, you aren't living a life of faith. It's all about faith. It's easy to fall into rules/legalism. Humans like to control things, to control other peole.
Legalism= the excessive adherence to law/formula/rules.
"You were running a good race. Who cut in on you to keep you from obeying the truth? 8 That kind of persuasion does not come from the one who calls you. 9 “A little yeast works through the whole batch of dough.'" Galatians 5:7-9
Who cut in on you? Who got you off course? Why are you listening to them?
It doesn't take much to change something. Watch out for "bad yeast." Legalism, if it comes in, can take over quickly. Faith is so simple it confounds the wise. Don't go back to the law.
"For sin shall no longer be your master, because you are not under the law, but under grace." Romans 6:14
Jesus completed the law.
Don't choose slavery.
"Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
33 They answered him, “We are Abraham’s descendants and have never been slaves of anyone. How can you say that we shall be set free?”
34 Jesus replied, “Very truly I tell you, everyone who sins is a slave to sin. 35 Now a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it forever. 36 So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed." John 8:32-36
Second slavery -- Slavery of Self-Indulgence (license)
"You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh[a]; rather, serve one another humbly in love." Galatians 5:13
Stay on the path. Don't use your freedom to fall away. If you love Jesus you will keep His commandments (that is what He says). Sin harms me and those around me.
Here is a short list of the self-indulgent sins:
"The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; 20 idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions21 and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God." Galatians 5:19-21
We are for or against Christ. We walk by the Spirit or by the flesh. Either or. We must surrender/yield to the Spirit.
"So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. 17 For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever[a]you want. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law."
The Judge is the Judge. He judges right from wrong. We condemn ourselves. God never condemns. We choose Him or condemnation. We condemn ourselves when we don't choose Jesus.
"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control.Against such things there is no law. 24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires." Galatians 5:22-24
That is a life walking by the Spirit.
Self-control and love go hand in hand. Our joy will come through loving and serving others. Be joyful!
"Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit." Galatians 5:25
It's easy to see someone is out of step because he or she eventually walks away. Correct them in love. If you aren't in step you're walking away. Keep in step with the Spirit. It is all behind us in less we stand still -- then the junk wil catch up with us.
Hold on! He is coming!!
'Now I say to the rest of you in Thyatira, to you who do not hold to her teaching and have not learned Satan’s so-called deep secrets, ‘I will not impose any other burden on you,25 except to hold on to what you have until I come.’" Revelation 2:24-25