Sermon Prepared by James McCullen
Email Preach Him with Dr. Jim

Who Is Your Spiritual Mother?
Gal. 4:21-28

21 Tell me, you who want to be under law, do you not listen to the law?    22 For it is written that Abraham had two sons, one by the bondwoman and one by the free woman.    23 But the son by the bondwoman was born according to the flesh, and the son by the free woman through the promise.
24 This is allegorically speaking: for these {women} are two covenants, one {proceeding} from Mount Sinai bearing children who are to be slaves; she is Hagar.    25 Now this Hagar is Mount Sinai in Arabia, and corresponds to the present Jerusalem, for she is in slavery with her children.    26 But the Jerusalem above is free; she is our mother.    27 For it is written, "Rejoice, barren woman who does not bear; break forth and shout, you who are not in labor; for more are the children of the desolate than of the one who has a husband." (NAS)

Paul in this text introduces an allegory related to two mothers. The two mothers are Hagar and Sarah. Most of you will remember that Sarah was the wife of Sarah. Sarah was without child and encouraged Abraham to have a chid with her servant. Her servant was named Hagar. Abraham did as his wife requested and Hagar gave birth to as son; he was named Ismael.

God had promised Abraham and Sarah a son but they did not wait on God. They decided there flesh could decide better than God. God was faithful to His promise and when Sarah was well passed the normal age of child bearing she had a son and he was named Isaac.

In the text Paul calls Ismael the child of the flesh and Isaac the child of the promise. He then likens salvation by the law as the way of the flesh and salvation by grace as the child of the promise. He further calls the mother of a fleshly salvation Hagar. He further alludes to the mother of the promised salvation in Christ as Sarah.

So I ask you tonight who is your spiritual mother? I will called out to you the salvation statements of several belief systems of our day. Then I will site several verses of scripture to identify the Bible way of salvation.

1.    Those whose Spiritual Mother Is Hagar. v 23 a

                    "But the son by the bondwoman was born according to the flesh, . . . "

A.    The Group Called CHRISTIAN SCIENCE is a child of Hagar.

    1.    One of their statements relating their belief about Salvation.

            The great work of Jesus was to teach the way of Life by demonstration.   He was the
            Way-shower, and His crucifixion demonstrated practical affection and goodness for mankind.
            We acknowledge that the crucifixion of Jesus and his resurrection served to uplift faith to
            understand eternal Life, even the allness of Soul, Spirit, and the nothingness of matter.
            Man is saved through Christ, through Truth, Life, and Love as demonstrated by the Galilean
            Prophet in healing the sick and overcoming sin and death.
            *    Quoted from: Science and Health, 1916; 25:13; 24:27-28; 497:16:22.

B.    The Group Called Jehovah Witnesses are a Child of Hagar.

    1.    One of their statements relating their belief about Salvation.

            All who by reason of faith in Jehovah God and in Christ Jesus dedicate themselves to do God's
            will and then faithfully carry out their dedication will be rewarded with everlasting life. . . Some
            of these, that is 144,000,   will share in heavenly glory with Christ Jesus, while the others will
            enjoy the blessings of life down here on earth.

            The greater mass of humankind will be resurrected to find life here on earth amid paradise
            conditions. This will take place, after Armageddon, at the beginning of the great Judgment Day,
            1,000 years long (Millennium). He that exercises faith (in that Day) has everlasting life; the
            disobedient is judged adversely and will sleep in perpetual sleep.
            *    Quoted from Let God Be True, 1952, pp. 279, 281, 298.

C.    The Group called SPIRITUALISM is a child of Hagar.

    1.    One of their statements relating their belief about Salvation.

            Man becomes his own savior.
            Man is made better in this life by interaction with spirits.
            We affirm the moral responsibility of the individual, and that he makes his own happiness or
            unhappiness as he obeys or disobeys Nature's physical and spiritual laws.
            Man becomes a spirit after death, doing both evil and good, but he may be saved as he
            progresses from one spirit level to the next. We affirm that the doorway to reformation is never
            closed against any human soul,  here or hereafter.
            *    Quoted from Declaration of Principles, Nos. 7 and 8.

D.    The Group called MORMONISM is a child of Hagar.

    1.    One of their statements relating their belief about Salvation.

            The sectarian dogma of Justification by Faith alone has exercised an influence for evil.
            We believe that through the Atonement of Christ all mankind may be saved, by obedience to the
            laws and ordinances of the gospel.
            The priesthood of Aaron. . .holds the keys of baptism by immersion for the remission of sins.
            The living may be baptized for the dead "who died without a knowledge of the restored gospel."
            Only those married "for time and eternity" (Celestial Marriage) in Mormon temples can receive
            fulness of glory and "continuation of seeds forever and ever. Then shall they be gods, because
            they have no end."
            *    Quoted from Talmage, The Articles of Faith, p. 479. Third Article of Faith of the LDS,
                  Doctrine and Covenants 13; 128:5; 132:19-20.

E.    The Group called MODERN THEOLOGY is a child of Hagar.

    1.    One of their statements relating their belief about Salvation.

            Consecrated Christians are too busy about deeds of love and justice to give thought to their own
            selfish salvation.
            What does God require of a man but to be good and do good?
            God is the God and Father of all, through all and in all.
            The incarnation of God is not limited to one life only. All are sons of God, and will eventually be
            saved.      *

F.    The Group called BAPTISMAL REGENERATIONALIST are children of Hagar.

    1.    About 4 times a year a preacher form a strict segment of the so called Church of Christ wants to
            debate me about the matter of baptism and it's relationship to salvation. When I mention the thief
            on the cross that say well that was before the resurrection. I ask what difference does that make?
            I don't get a real good answer. I told one of these pastors that he does not believe in a whosoever
            Hagar does not believe John 3:16 is enough for her salvation she has add something to that

G,    The Group called CHURCH MEMBERSHIP is a child of Hagar.

            There are some groups that say they alone hold the proper doctrine of salvation and only those
            who are members of their church will go to heaven. I won't give any names at this time but trust
            me there are some who believe this.

H.    The Group called GOOD WORKS is a child of Hagar.

            These people may not be members of churches. They believe they are good enough to go to
            heaven just because they are good people. They judge themselves against other human beings
            and think they come up okay. They are their own source of theology. The problem is God
            judges related to Jesus.


Whose child are you spiritually?   Is Hagar your spiritual mother?

2.    Those whose Spiritual Mother Is Sarah. v 23 b

            ". . . and the son by the free woman through the promise."

A.    Children of the Promise through believe.

    1.    They believe JESUS did the work of God for Salvation. John 6:29
                29 Jesus answered and said to them, "This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom
                He has sent.  "NAS

    2.    They believe Jesus is the Only Way to heaven. John 14:6
            Jesus said to him, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father, but
            through Me. NAS

    3.    They believe Salvation is according to the Grace of God. Eph. 2:8-10; Rom 11:6
            8 For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of
            God; 9 not as a result of works, that no one should boast. NAS

            Rom 11:6 But if it is by grace, it is no longer on the basis of works, otherwise grace is no longer
            grace. NAS

    4.    They believe Everyone Has Sinned and Needs Salvation. Rom 3:23-24
            23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 being justified as a gift by His grace
            through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus; NAS

5. They believe in a whosoever salvation. John 3:16
            16 "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in
            Him should not perish, but have eternal life. NAS


Who is your spiritual Mother?

Theologian Emery Bancroft wrote, "Some years ago a Parliament of Religion was held in Chicago, in connection with the World's Fair. At that Parliament the great ethnic faiths of the world were represented. One by one the leading men arose and spoke for Buddhism, Confucianism, Hinduism, and Mohammedans.

Then DR. Joseph Cook of Boston, who had been chosen to represent Christianity, arose to speak. "Here is Lady Macbeth's hand," he said, "stained with the foul murder of Duncan. See her as she perambulates through the halls and corridors of her palatial home, stopping to cry, `Out (cursed) spot! Out I say! Will these hands never be clean?'" Then turning to those seated on the platform, he said, `Can any of you who are so anxious to propagate your religious systems offer any cleansing efficacy for the sin and guilt of Lady Macbeth's crime?'

An oppressive silence was maintained by them all ... Only the blood of Christ can purge the conscience from dead works to serve the living God."

*    Copied from the paper called THE SPIRIT OF TRUTH AND ERROR #1
        printed by MOODY PRESS

I also got the general idea for the message from a sermon on this text from the following site: