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Don't be a Hagar! - Galatians 4:19-31

Don't be a Hagar! - Galatians 4:19-31
By Pastor Lee Hemen
August 28, 2015

In the annals of history no one wants to be remembered as a Wrong Way Corrigan who was an American aviator who after a transcontinental flight from Long Beach, California, to New York, flew from Floyd Bennett Field in Brooklyn, New York, to Ireland, though his flight plan was filed to return to Long Beach. Nor do we want to be known as a Charlie Brown the cartoon character who falls for his friend Lucy's duplicitous football fakeouts or who always blows the neighborhood baseball game. And in the Bible we would not want to be equated with Hagar -- or, would we?

Paul in making his case to the Galatians has given them several examples of how they're going back to their old faith habits was headed spiritually in the wrong direction and now he gives them the example of Hagar. She was a handmaiden, servant, of Sarah Abraham's wife. Later after Sarah's scheming to circumnavigate God's plan Hagar…

Where's your joy placed? - Galatians 4:13-18

Where's your joy placed? - Galatians 4:13-18
By Pastor Lee Hemen
August 21, 2016

A lot of folks do not understand that there is a difference between joy and happiness. Happiness can be fleeting while joy is more steadfast and sure, and in fact you can have joy even when everything around you in life is falling apart. Too much of today's world has confused joy with happiness. Lasting joy is not found in things. True joy that lasts not just a lifetime but forever is that which is found in a relationship, not in sinful people but in the one who gave everything to give you everlasting joy!

Paul understood this and did not want the Galatian church to be deceived or lured away by the false, shallow, and momentary happiness of the world around them. I know it is hard for some of you to believe but sometimes people have ulterior or hidden motives. They want your friendship, your vote, or your physical presence in order to satisfy their personal lust for power, greed, or pleasure. Paul…

No turning back! - Galatians 4:8-12

No turning back! - Galatians 4:8-12
By Pastor Lee Hemen
August 14, 2016

It is interesting to me how over the years I have met those who while they do not believe in God have sold themselves into other philosophies or people that in the balance of things are really rather odd. We live in the information age but it's as if critical thinking has gone out the window. Far too many fall prey to what "popular" opinion teaches rather than what reality truly is. A good example of this is when those who lean towards progressive thought claim conservatives are "Nazis". Nazis were socialist and politically progressive in their thinking; the problem arises when one does not know what the definitions of these terms are. As Forrest Gump's momma would say, "Stupid is as stupid does." My dad would say that "There is no turning back from being foolish."

The Greek-thinking Galatians were not only being influenced by Judaizers (those who supported Jesus plu…

God's children! - Galatians 4:1-7

God's children! - Galatians 4:1-7
By Pastor Lee Hemen
August 7, 2016

What rights do children have? Some would say, "Way too many!" while others would declare, "Not enough!" Yet how the ancient world saw children is quite different from our modern day perception of every child being an "honored child". This might be kind of shocking to our sensitive ears but children were considered a kind of property and in some cases they were seen only as a means to establish a heritage. By today's standards and how overprotective some parents are you might say, "We've come a long way baby!"

Paul had just gotten through establishing the fact that we "are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus". However what did this mean for the Galatian believers and for us today? Some mistakenly think that everyone is a "child of God" simply because they exist and while we are all created in the image of God we are not all children of G…