Tuesday, December 28, 2010

A Different Gospel

A Different Gospel

Galatians 1:6-10
I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you to live in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel— which is really no gospel at all. Evidently some people are throwing you into confusion and are trying to pervert the gospel of Christ. But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let them be under God’s curse! As we have already said, so now I say again: If anybody is preaching to you a gospel other than what you accepted, let them be under God’s curse!

Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ.

Paul was under attack. Not only from complete non-believers, but especially, from people who claimed to be Christian. These people, known as the 'Judiazers' were telling the church of Galatia that Paul's Gospel was incomplete. Something was lacking in what he was preaching.

The real thing that they thought was lacking was that Paul's preaching did not include being Jewish and following the Jewish ceremonial food laws and other Jewish ceremonial laws such as circumcision. In other words, the Judiaizers were teaching a different Gospel from what Paul was teaching and were saying that because Jesus was Jewish, then to be a true Christian, you needed to be Jewish first and then you could become a true Christian.

Paul preached a Gospel of grace and grace alone to be saved. As he stated in his letter to the Ephesians 2:8-9 "For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast." There was no mention of being Jewish first.

Paul goes on in the 1st chapter to tell the Galatians about his former life as a Jewish Leader and how he first persecuted the church and tried to destroy it. Later when he was traveling to Damascus, Jesus himself appeared to him to reveal the true Gospel message and from that point forward, Paul was a changed man; Living for Jesus whom he preached to all the gentiles.

How about us today? Are we changing the Gospel message from that which we first received? Are we preaching "For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast."? Do we add to the Gospel message?

Prayer: Heavenly Father, we pray that we are faithful. We pray that you will keep us humble and true to your Word because your WORD is truth; Your WORD is LIFE. To add to that or subtract away from that is pure folly. Help us all to remember the Gospel message and live it out in Spirit and truth in such a way that when people see or hear us, the see and hear Jesus himself.
In Jesus' name and for His sake, Amen.

Blessings All!

--El