We have seen in our study of Galatians that Paul makes mention of the Holy Spirit quite a number of times. In Galatians 3:2 Paul asks, “Did you receive the Spirit by observing the law, or by believing what you heard?” This obviously is a rhetorical question. The answer: they did receive the Spirit by believing the Gospel that they heard.
He asks another question in verse 3, “After beginning with the Spirit, are you now trying to attain your goal by human effort?” There is a degree of sarcasm in this question. If it took the Spirit to transform you from sinner to son of God, is it wise to think you can transform yourself as a son of God into a mature, Christ-like person? The answer is clear, “Of course not.” To live the Christian life is supernatural. It can only be experienced and expressed authentically by an ongoing work of the Holy Spirit.
Paul makes this point by asking another rhetorical question, “Does God give you his Spirit and work miracles among you because you observe the law, or because you believe what you heard?” The answer: It is all by faith!
God promised that the Holy Spirit would come. We receive what was promised by faith! When we trust in the son, Jesus Christ, who was sent by God, we are redeemed and given full rights of sons. And “Because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, ‘Abba, Father’” (Galatians 4:4-6).
We can call God “Father,” without the Spirit. But to say with assurance, “Abba, Father,” is a work of the Spirit. “Abba” is like a child saying to his father, “Daddy.” It’s intimate and authentic.
Are you comfortable and confident addressing God as “Abba, Father”?