by ROBIN BOSCH
Gal 5:7 “Ye did run well; who did hinder you that ye should not obey the truth?”
Paul was extremely worried about the spiritual condition of the Galatians. They, who whole heartedly believed the Gospel of grace, were somehow persuaded to abandon the “Amazing Grace” ship.
Paul saw their condition and sternly warned them of their error. He pulled no punches – for their very foundation was being undermined. You could almost say that he was angry that they had fallen back into the works of the flesh. Not angry in terms of wrath, but love and concern for their spiritual health.
His anguish and heartfelt cry vibrated with emotion and frustration, crying out,”O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth, crucified among you?” (Gal 3: 1 KJV)
Paul used shock tactics. He had to shake them. His words had to be sharp, cutting them to their very core. His words had to pluck them from the fire. Why? Their salvation was at stake. Hear his words: “But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.” (Gal.1:8)
He repeats the warning:
“As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.” (Gal.1:9)
What Gospel had they originally received? THE GOSPEL OF GRACE.
Can you see the danger here? I believe when we slip back from grace to works, His Righteousness to our righteousness; like the Jews we become hardened and deem ourselves unworthy of everlasting life. (Acts. 13:36)
The scripture in Romans 8:22AMP becomes very applicable: “Then note and appreciate the gracious kindness and severity toward those who have fallen, but God’s gracious kindness to you – provided you continue in His grace and abide in His kindness; otherwise you too will be cut off (pruned away).” (Rom.11:22 AMP)
These are hard words but true in the light of those who persist in walking under the Law and nullifying the purpose of the Cross. (Rom 4:14) (Mk. 7:13)
These words were penned to shake them out of bewitching and beguiling error.
Paul asked the question:- “This only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith? Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh? Have ye suffered so many things in vain? if it be yet in vain.” (Gal. 3:2-4)
You see – Christ paid the price for our full salvation – spirit, soul and body; that includes sanctification. It was stamped signed and sealed with His Blood. Redemption bought without reserve.Love displayed without restraint.
When we strive in the flesh to achieve that which has already been obtained on the Cross, we crucify Christ afresh. (Heb.6:6) We deem His sacrifice as insufficient and thus fall from grace. (Gal.5:4)
When we become aware that we are staying from grace, we check ourselves, repent and once again:
“Harbor our ship of faith, in the Bay of Grace.
Plant our Anchor firm,
On the Rock that’s sure.”
Like the Galatians, we must be aware of the enemies beguiling tactics. We must be aware that there are proponents and servants of the devil who would spy out the liberty which we have in Christ. (Gal.5:1) Who would point us back to human effort and push us back into bondage. (Gal.2:4) Who would bewitch us into a life of fleshly endeavor, substituting Gods Glory for the controlling influence of the flesh. “A little leaven leaveneth the whole lump.” (Gal 5:9 KJV)
Be on your guard It might be a Pastor, friend or family member, theologian or mentor
A legalistic Christian with a strong persona.. Influencing, threatening and presenting rules and steps. A proponent of laws and commandments.. A spiritual competitor, displaying works of piety to be seen of men.sowing seeds of bitterness and dividing Christ’s body with libelous intent.
Gal 2:4 “And that because of false brethren unawares brought in, who came in privily to spy out our liberty which we have in Christ Jesus, that they might bring us into bondage”
But Paul’s response was”………we gave place by subjection, no, not for an hour; that the truth of the gospel might continue with you.”(Gal.2:5) What truth was that?- The Gospel of Grace.
Let us watch and pray that we remain steadfast, firm in faith – continuing in His Grace.
(Act 13:43b AMP) “..many of the Jews and the devout converts of Judaism followed Paul and Barnabus, who talked to them and urged them to continue [to trust themselves to and to stand fast] in the grace (the unmerited favor and blessing) of God.”
(Act 13:43 KJV) “many of the Jews and religious proselytes followed Paul and Barnabas: who, speaking to them, persuaded them to continue in the grace of God.”
“Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present [you] faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy, To the only wise God our Saviour, [be] glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen.” (Jde 1:24, 25 KJV)
I have been a believer in Christ for many years. It has only been in the last three or four years that I have received greater insight into the Grace of God. This has injected me with energy to tell others about the blessed “rest” we have in Christ. Grace is not a theology but is a Person– Jesus.