“For through the law I died to the law, so that I might live to God” (Galatians 2:19)
Paul has made clear that obeying the law can’t justify us. We can only be justified by faith in Jesus Christ. Now Paul explains that he died to the law, through the law. What does he mean by this phrase?
Well, when Paul tried to obey the law, he discovered that he couldn’t meet its requirements. The law is crystal clear: ‘you failed; you don’t meet God’s standards’. This insight led Paul to put his hope on Christ, not on the requirements of the law. He doesn’t even try anymore to earn his own salvation. The law has lost its grip on his life.
Instead, Paul lives to God. Being justified by faith, he is now in a right relationship with God again. He has found a new freedom to devote his life to God’s will and to please Him. Not with the goal to earn anything, but out of thankfulness and love for his Savior “who loved me and gave himself for me” (Galatians 2:20). Paul still tries to live according to God’s will, but his motivation has changed completely.
How is that for you? Do you try to honor God in your life? Why?