“For am I now seeking the favor of men, or of God? Or am I striving to please men? If I were still striving to please men, I would not be a bondservant of Christ.” Galatians 1:10
So, funny question to ask in light of the verse this week. Are you ready for it?
How are you doing with the challenge to memorize verses each week?
I realize that in light of the verse on pleasing God and not man, the question may come across as “are you doing what I asked?” Not at all. I am eager to see how God uses our desire to learn and memorize His Word this year. These verses are arbitrary and only serve as suggestions to help us all grow as disciples.
But, the question does remain as one of the *unfortunate* tools that we use in the Church to shame others for not being “as committed to Christ” as we are or not “as serious about their faith”. This is one of the aspects that Paul is addressing in this passage to the churches in Galatia. Yes, it is a direct and head on defense of a pure Gospel in spite of the many false teachings that surrounded the early church. This is a lesson for us to take in the Church today with so many exceptions to the true Gospel that are parading around in our churches today as though they are the main focus of our worship.
But, in a real sense the church in Paul’s day was under pressure to capitulate to the pressures of society around them. That sounds familiar. There were people, our brothers and sisters in Christ, who didn’t want to disappoint other Christians, their neighbors and family who weren’t believers, or their previous religious crowd (whether they were Jewish converts or Greeks who came to Christ). There is a real sense of the human experience desiring to fit in or measure up to someone else. That is what we call “people pleasing”. When the Church uses this as a tool for measuring how holy someone is, it is demonstrating how far it has drifted from loving like Christ.
Nevertheless, storing God’s Word in our heart is an amazing tool for spiritual growth. As we have walked through verses of Scripture over the last few weeks, we have been able to find new methods to assist us with the memory work. This week is a fun method…we are going to use music!
Go ahead and get Victory in Jesus in your mind because it will be the backdrop for our verse this week. I am going to give you the words to the memory verse as they would fall in the melody of the hymn.
For am I no – ow seek – ing
(I heard an old, old sto – ry)
The fa – a – vor of ma – an
(How a Savior came from glo – ry)
Or o – f God?
(How He gave His life)
Or am I stri – ving to – oo ple – ase man
(on Calvary to save a wretch like me)
If I were still try-ing
(I heard about His groaning)
To please men, I would not
(Of His precious blood’s ato – ning)
Be a bondser – vant of Christ
(then I re – pent – ed of my sins)
Ga la tians o – ne ten
(And won the vic tor -y)
Since this only works as the verse, go ahead and sing the chorus to the hymn as well. This will help us keep it right in front of our heart that our only way to please God is through the victory we have in Christ Jesus!
No, this isn’t perfect. But, with a little imagination and fun you can put God’s Word to memory. Just keep in mind that you aren’t doing it for me or your parents or you children or even Pastor Deris. You do it as the Lord leads!
 Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture is taken from the New American Standard Bible © 1995 by the Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.
 We addressed this in our Midweek Bible Study on Feb 3. You can access it by going to facebook.com/FirstBaptistFairburn and scrolling down to the Zoom livestream. Doctrine matters!
 You probably have your favorite instrumental version of the song added to your playlist or even ringtone, but if not, here is a piano playing the hymn for you to use for the exercise. Also, I have no idea who this is: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AW9xsYUFHdc
 If you have some musical tendencies, you can choose any hymn to make the meter and flow of the verse work. Get creative with your song choice and other verses you may want to memorize.