Day 32: A Prison and a Tutor

Galatians 3:22-25  :

But the Scriptures imprisoned all things under sin, that the promise by faith in Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe. But before faith came, we were kept in custody under the law, confined for the faith which should afterwards be revealed. So that the law has become our tutor to bring us to Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor.

Paul uses two analogies to describe the law here. It is interesting, too, that he calls the law “Scriptures” here. To Paul, there wasn’t a New Testament yet. He was still writing it. The Scriptures were the Law and Prophets and Paul says here that this law was a prison for sinners. In order to be truly prepared for a Savior, you need to know that you are in need of one. That’s what the Old Testament does. It locks you up in sin by showing you your true condition.

Paul also calls the law a tutor. The law makes sure that we understand who we really are and teaches us that if we don’t get help, we will be destroyed by a righteous God.

It’s important for us to understand that God planned it this way. He didn’t expect mankind to produce a real relationship with Him by working for it. We know this because of the sacrifices that He told them they had to perform. Many of these sacrifices were for their sins. If God expected man to make it by their own righteousness, why would they need a sacrifice for their sins?

God also planned that the way that we would be justified, or made right with God, would be by faith alone. This is what it says here again. “Now that faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor.” That’s it. We are not under the law anymore! We are free from jail and have graduated from school. This is one of the biggest reasons I give praise to God. I am happy that this weight of legal requirements is now off of my back. I am really free. This alone won’t make us live righteously, however. It does free us from something that will only expose our sin, but we haven’t yet talked about what it is that makes us able to actually live like God wants us to today. I urge you to read ahead and find out more for yourself about how we are able to do good.