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Galatians: Christ Plus Equals Nothing (Nettles)

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Free Grace Press

The driving theme of the book of Galatians is the glory of Christ—the glory of his perfect obedience to all the requirements of God’s law. Driven by unbreakable certainty in his calling as a herald of divine truth to the churches in Galatia, the apostle Paul fearlessly declares that Jesus Christ alone saves. The joyous life that might be found through obedience to the law has been taken away by human sinfulness—only Jesus has kept every positive requirement of the law and has even suffered its curse. The result is that union with Christ by faith is the triune God’s provision for sinners to be declared right by him—the Father calls; the Son saves; the Spirit draws.

Paul’s message in Galatians remains most relevant for people today—if we seek to be justified by works, we are damned, but if we come as sinners to the righteous crucified one, we will stand before God in the spotless righteousness of his Son. God’s holy demands are not sacrificed in this transaction. Rather, it is the sacrifice of the Son that meets all God’s holy requirements. As a result, justification is the crediting to the believer of the moral law fulfilled; sanctification follows and is the moral law pursued.


Tom Nettles has written biographies of Charles Spurgeon and James P. Boyce. Among his other books are By His Grace and for His Glory and Baptists and the Bible. He is retired but serves as a senior professor at the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.