Galatians 3:23-29 (NLT
23 Before it was possible to be saved from the punishment of sin by putting our trust in Christ, we were held under the Law. It was as if we were being kept in prison. We were kept this way until Christ came. 24 The Law was used to lead us to Christ. It was our teacher, and so we were made right with God by putting our trust in Christ. 25 Now that our faith is in Christ, we do not need the Law to lead us. 26 You are now children of God because you have put your trust in Christ Jesus. 27 All of you who have been baptized to show you belong to Christ have become like Christ. 28 God does not see you as a Jew or as a Greek. He does not see you as a servant or as a person free to work. He does not see you as a man or as a woman. You are all one in Christ. 29 If you belong to Christ, then you have become the true children of Abraham. What God promised to him is now yours.

The law kept people prisoners because they had to keep strict observance of the law under the threat of severe punishment. The law was their teacher, to bring them to Christ so that they might be justified by faith. The Law was used to help people realize they could not take away sin on their own. It required them to place their faith in God in order to obtain mercy and grace. It was said of Abraham that he believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness. It was faith in God that made Abraham righteous and it was faith in God that allowed him to carry out God�s will. When Christ came the law still showed us right from wrong, but did not hold us in bondage to it. For we have the choice of trying to accomplish what is right on our own or accepting Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior. Clearly, God�s promise to give the whole earth to Abraham and his descendants was based not on his obedience to God�s law, but on a right relationship with God that comes by faith. If God�s promise is only for those who obey the law, then faith is not necessary and the promise is pointless. The law always brings punishment on those who try to obey it. (The only way to avoid breaking the law is to have no law to break!) So the promise is received by faith. It is given as a free gift. And we are all certain to receive it, whether or not we live according to the Law of Moses, if we have faith like Abraham�s. For Abraham is the father of all who believe. That is what the Scriptures mean when God told him, �I have made you the father of many nations.� This happened because Abraham believed in the God who brings the dead back to life and who creates new things out of nothing.

Theologian Alister McGrath outlines the following three stages of receiving what Christ did for us on the cross:

1. I may believe that God is promising me forgiveness of sins.
2. I may trust that promise.
3. Unless I respond to that promise, I shall not obtain forgiveness. The first two stages of faith prepare the way for the third, without it they are incomplete.

As an illustration I can believe antibiotics will cure a bacterial illness. I can trust the doctors who tell me the antibiotics are what I need and will provide a cure for a possible death. But nothing will change unless I receive the drug. I must allow it to destroy the bacteria which are slowly killing me. Otherwise, I have not benefited from my faith in it.

Benefit in God�s plan of salvation by trusting in Jesus Christ and response to Jesus as He calls you to do His will. Allow Jesus to fend off the sin that attacks you in your daily life.