Understanding Paul's Difficult Scriptures

Fred R. Coulter—January 9, 2021

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Greetings, everyone! Welcome to Sabbath services! What a week this has been.

Why was the final process (of the election)—that Vice President Pence was in charge of—turn out to be unconstitutional, though they said it was Constitutional?

There's a great lesson for us, and a great lesson for understanding the Bible out of it. It's not talking politics, it's taking law. How many of you think that the Supreme Court made the wrong decision in not taking the case? If you think so, you're incorrect! That was the right decision.

  • What did they say?
  • Why did it not have standing?

Because they did not go to the State Legislatures in assembly first! That's why! It wasn't just Chief Justice John Roberts who turned it down, it was 9-0 not to take it. They can't take it until after the State Legislatures do what they're supposed to do.

In all six of the 'battleground' states, it was not the State Legislature in assembly that verified the vote. So, when they got together on Wednesday with Vice-President Pence, he asked the traditional question. He named the state and asked them to present the certificate of election, and asked if there was a protest. So they had the protest, however, they used the later edition of how to vote instead of the original decision, which should have been with the state in question.

So, with the Democrats in charge, it was a slam-dunk for the Democrats. But why was Vice-President Pence's handling of it unconstitutional? And hence the whole thing was unconstitutional, though they claim they were following the Constitution.  Here's the lesson for Bible things:

  • How many people claim to be Christian?
  • How many ministers say we ought to follow the Word of God?

Like Robert Jeffress says, one of the 'faith ministers' of Donald Trump, says that 'we ought to obey God rather than men'—which is true! But, Pastor Jeffers', why do you and all of your Protestant friends keep Sunday? When you do, you're obeying men in a Catholic institution and are subjected to the pope! See the connection there?

Now, back to the Electoral College: With the decision of the Supreme Court, what was the correct question that Pence should have asked? What Pence did is just went down the line on how all of the other ones in the past have been done. But this is not an election that has problems like elections in the past. So, you must have questions related to the current election problem!

What did Pence fail to ask? If he would have asked on those six 'battleground states' Trump would have won. He should have said, 'Is this electoral certification certified by the State Legislature in assembly?' They all six would have had to answer no!

Therefore, Pence could have taken those ballots, set them aside and say, 'These ballots cannot be counted because they were not the work of the State Legislature in assembly! Which means that none of those would count for Biden, none of those would count for Trump. In that case, neither one would have 270 electoral votes, and what would have had to happen then? He would have had to call for a special election of the Congress of the United States, the House of Representatives, where each state would have ONE vote and that would have affirmed Trump's victory 30-20!

That's what should have happened! This is a completely illegal President (Biden), illegal unconstitutional process. That being the case—Democrats being the party of lawlessness—think of what they're going to try and do before the gate closes, or if they can close the gate.

We don't know, yet, what may take place, but it's very interesting. Let's see if anyone picks up on that. You'll probably hear someone pick up on that, because that should have been the right question. The way it was:

The state of Arizona presents the electoral vote for the state of Arizona. Are there any protests? Senator Cruz stood up and said, 'Yes.' So, they went and had their debate.

At that point, I turned if off!

VP Pence should have said, 'Have these votes for the Electoral College been certified by the State Legislature in assembly?'

They would have had to say no!In all those cases it was either the Secretary of State or the Governor, and the Constitution specifically says only the State Legislature can do it.

So, it show that how, in the name of the Constitution, you can do something that is completely unconstitutional! Everybody thinks its right, but it's not right.

Let's apply the same thing to the Word of God. How many things are there that people believe and read from the Bible that are not true? Yet, with the proper understanding and the proper translation, you can understand it, and it does make sense.

So, let's pick up from where we left off in the message: You Are Important to God. We talked about the commandments of God, the Laws of God, the precepts of God, His Word; all true and settled in heaven!

Proverbs 30:5: "Every Word of God is pure… [in the original] …He is a shield to those who put their trust in Him. Do not add to His words…" (vs 5-6).

We're going to see some very important things. You can add to it by actually changing the word; taking away from it is the same thing. If you take away then you are changing the Word of God,

"…lest He correct you and you be found a liar" (v 6). His Word will always correct you!

Here's another thing to understand: What you believe—whether true or false—you believe with the same intensity. That's why there are those people who are given over to lawlessness who believe they are right, but they are completely, absolutely wrong!

Those who believe in lawfulness look at them and say that they're lawless and shouldn't be doing it. The lawless say that 'we don't like your laws and we're going to change them. That's where we are politically!

Matt. 16:18 is the famous verse that the Catholics use to justify changing anything they want to, and renaming anything they want to, to make is 'Christian' or sound 'Christian.' They say that Jesus built His Church on Peter.

If you go online at Church at Home, you will find a series: Was Peter Ever in Rome? Peter was never in Rome, nor was he buried at the Vatican. Peter was buried and they have found his grave on the Mount of Olives. Here's was Jesus said to Peter:

Matthew 16:18: "And I say also to you that you are Peter; but upon this Rock I will build My Church, and the gates of the grave shall not prevail against it."

That means that it would never die out. What whole denomination does this eliminate? A worldwide denomination with a lot of people in it? The Latter Day Saints! The Mormons! They say that an angel appear to Joseph Smith while he was lying on his back. You never worship God on your back! You find in the Bible that you're always on your face. They say that the church died out and God was going to raise it up through Joseph Smith.

One time I was asked to visit this man; it was when I was the pastor in Salt Lake City. He asked for a visit, so Headquarters sent out all the information. I contacted him and made an appointment to go out there. He invites me into his home and after I'm there a couple of minutes, two more men come in. He said, 'These are my elders from the Mormon Church. I thought, that's interesting.

He said, 'I wanted to hear you discuss between each other.' I said, 'This presents me with a problem, because Jesus Christ—Who is the Son of God—Who cannot lie, said that He would build His Church and it would not die out. Joseph Smith says that God told him that the church died out and He was going to build it through him. I choose to believe God and not Joseph Smith,' and I got up and walked out.

That's takes care of the Mormons, so let's go one step further. Now, in the Bible be sure to read the footnotes. Remember, all the difficulties come when you never read the details. That's why the great deception is coming on the whole world!

Much of the news is now blocked out from them. They make the news say what they want it to say, and people believe what they are told. Very few check out the facts. But there are still enough outlets to get the Truth from. In this case you read the footnote for Matt. 16:18.

By the way, the way they can cut everything off on the Internet now, you better have a paper Bible.

Here's where the Catholics say that the pope can do anything he wants to, and change anything he wants to:

Verse 19: "And I will give to you the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven; and whatever you may bind on the earth…"

Let me read from the King James Version, which is interesting indeed! The KJV has a lot of errors in it. Not as many as the New Revised Standard Version or some of the others, but major problems that cause people to believe wrong doctrines.

KJV, v 19 "And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven… [that's why the pope has those two keys] …and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven."

That's not what the original Greek says, and all of the translators should no better. They do know better, but they like their little lies. If you have it as it is in the KJV you have a gross contradiction in the Word of God. Look at what the Catholics have done with:  "…whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven." They turn it into an absolute quagmire of lawlessness!

Matthew 5:17—Jesus said: "Do not think… [don't let it enter your mind] …that I have come to abolish the Law…"

That's exactly what the Protestants say. We will see a little later where it says that 'Christ is the end of the law.' What are you going to do with that one? That one is in the KJV!

"…or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish, but to fulfill" (v 17)—complete!

It's like if you have a bottle of water that's half full, you fill it up, filled it full; that's what this means. The New Testament gives all the spiritual application of the laws and commandments of God.

Verse 18: "For truly I say to you, until the heaven and the earth shall pass away, one jot or one tittle shall in no way pass from the Law until everything has been fulfilled."

  • Has everything been fulfilled?
  • Is New Jerusalem on the earth?

That's in the last two chapter of Revelation; hasn't happened!

Matthew 5:19: "Therefore, whoever shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, shall be called least in the Kingdom of Heaven; but whoever shall practice and teach them, this one shall be called great in the Kingdom of Heaven."

How do we solve this problem of Matt. 16:19? You can't solve it in the KJV, because it's a completely wrong translation! In the Greek this is called 'pluperfect,' which means that it's already been decided in heaven first.

Matthew 16:19: "…and whatever you may bind on the earth will have already been bound in heaven…"

You must check the Word of God for the decision. God is not going to bind lawlessness just because people want lawlessness. That's adding to the Word of God! They added to it by leaving out "…will have already been bound in heaven…"; same way with fulfilled.

So, you look in the Word of God when you have a problem, and you find out how God defines it, and it's always there somewhere! That's decision that you make. You cannot make an arbitrary decision separate from the Word of God by the lawless translation of the KJV.

"…and whatever you may loose on the earth will have already been loosed in heaven" (v 19).

That's what it has to be. In Matt. 18[transcriber's correction] you have the same thing. What if two people agree with something on the earth that is not right, legal or lawful. Is it binding? No!

Matthew 18:15: "So then, if your brother sins against you, go and show him his fault between you and him alone…."

The #1 important thing is that all problems are solved at the lowest level possible between the two of you, or three of you, whatever it is: alone!

"…If he is willing to hear you, you have gained your brother. But if he will not listen, take with you one or two others, so that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established" (vs 15-16).

You want to have the truth; do nothing on a whim or a rumor. You don't assume something because somebody else thinks it, and you believe it.

Verse 17: "…And if he fails to listen to them, tell it to the Church…."

The Church is not the ministry! The Church is the congregation (1-Cor. 5); Paul told them what they should do, but they made the decision to get rid of the man who was committing incest. Paul was not even there personally.

"…But if he also fails to listen to the Church, let him be to you as the heathen and the tax collector" (v 17). The next verse agrees with Matt. 16:

Verse 18: "Truly I say to you, whatever you shall bind on the earth will have already been bound in heaven…"—pluperfect!

The decision is already made somewhere in the Bible! You can find it and apply it. That's the way it should be done.

"…and whatever you shall loose on the earth will have already been loosed in heaven" (v 18).

  • What is the major thing that has been loosed on the earth because it was loosed in heaven? The priesthood and the sacrifices of the Old Testament!
  • Who did the loosing? God!

He put in a new sacrifice: Jesus Christ! That's binding!

I want you to understand that, because it will help us to understand another complicated verse that we will get to.

Verse 19: "Again I say to you, that if two of you on earth shall agree concerning any matter that they wish to request, it shall be done for them by My Father, Who is in heaven."

That is provided that it is according to the will of God. You're not going to get together and say:

O God, we need some money from the bank down the road, and we've already scouted it out and we have a gun, masks, etc., and bless us in this robbery so we can get some money to live on

That is called a conspiracy to commit a crime! If you commit it, what will God do? He'll send the police there to greet you when you arrive!

Verse 20: "'For where two or three are gathered together in My name, there, I am in the midst of them.' Then Peter came to Him and said, 'Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me and I forgive him? Until seven times?' Jesus said to him, 'I do not say to you until seven times, but until seventy times seven'" (vs 20-22).

The book of Romans is a very profound and interesting book, and one of the most misunderstood by the Protestants in the Bible. There are a number of very difficult Scriptures to understand.

Remember that there is never a contradiction between Scriptures in the Bible. The apparent contradiction would be mistranslation or misunderstanding. Rom. 3:20 (KJV) is a gross mistranslation of the Bible that has led all Protestantism to accept lawlessness!

Romans 3:20 (KJV): "Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin."

That's the one for 20 years I couldn't understand.

  • What does it say in Rev. 2 & 3 that we're going to be judged by?
  • What's the first thing that Jesus says to each one of the seven churches?
  • I know your faith? No!

If it were faith, that's what He would have said, because like the Lutherans say, 'Faith, and faith alone.' Jesus says, 'I know your works!'

  • How can no one be justified by "…the works of the law…" if we have to have works?
  • What is the answer to that?

The two definite articles: 'the' before works and 'the' before law. It says 'deeds' in the KJV, but it's works, same thing. The definite article is not there in the Greek. That is profoundly important. Why? Because the definite article means definiteness! But if it's not there, the meaning is changed. The Greek actually reads: works of law, not 'the' work of 'the' law!

Verse 20: (FV): "Therefore, by works of law there shall no flesh be justified before Him; for through the Law is the knowledge of sin."

The next verse tells us something else, which is also a mistranslation in the KJV:

Verse 21 (KJV): "But now the righteousness of God without the law…"

What does the word without in English mean? The absence of law! That's why it says, 'without Law there is no sin,' which is true! But that's where they get their grace to do anything they want to.

"…is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets" (v 21 KJV). That's a contradiction in itself right there!

Does the law witness lawlessness in the first five books of the Bible? No! Here's the correct translation:

Verse 20 (FV): "Therefore, by works of law there shall no flesh be justified before Him; for through the Law is the knowledge of sin. But now the righteousness of God that is separate from law…" (vs 20-21).

  • What is righteousness, or justification?
  • What does justification mean? Right standing with God, because your sins have been forgiven!

Just like in a court of law today, if you go into court and you have charges against you, they're going to judge you. So, God says, 'If you want to have contact with Me…' What the first thing we're supposed do? Repent! Ask forgiven! With that forgiveness also be determined to quit living in sin!

  • What is sin?
  • Just being a bad person?

No! It's the transgression of the Law!

So, see how all of these things a difficult to understand in the KJV! Now let's see a key, the whole second chapter of Romans backs this up. After talking about all the sins of all of the empires, then Paul gets into:

Romans 2:13: "Because the hearers of the Law are not just before God, but the doers of the Law shall be justified."

See the contradiction that it presents if the word—in the wrong translation—is without law, why then should you be a doer of the Law? Because that means separate from the Law!

The sacrifice of Jesus Christ and His shed blood was something superior to everything in the Old Testament in the way of sacrifice and ritual by the priesthood. That is the sacrifice. Now we have repentance for the forgiveness of sin.

  • What does repentance bring us? Justification with God!
  • How did you get the justification? By repentance!

You certainly didn't get by animal sacrifice. You certainly can't get if you keep some of the laws of God, because you're still a transgressor if you transgress one part of the Law, you're transgressing all of it.

I want you see something very important out of this. See how this same principle applies to what happened on Wednesday in the certification of Biden as President-elect. They took unconstitutional verification of the electoral vote that was done without the State Legislature in assembly.

So, to accept that was unconstitutional and illegal, just like it says there that the righteousness of God without lawThere's no such thing!

Verse 13: "…the doers of the Law shall be justified"—meaning that you have to repent and start keeping the laws of God or you will not be justified!

Remember this: the details are always important!



A Parsing Guide, which takes every verb in the New Testament—and they also have it for the Old Testament. It tells you what kind of verb, how many persons, past, present and future and the difference in between. That is available online as well in the Textus Receptus.

However, I just discovered that some of their definitions of it—to save space—did not have pluperfect, but had perfect. Nevertheless, it is perfect.

We are soon going to have the Bible online with all of the Parsing Guide. Unless you have a Parsing Guide, you do not know what kind of verb it is. Nor do you know how it should be applied. That becomes very important. We will also have the definition of Strong's there, but always remember that Strong's is limited, because they expand the definition so much that it's inclusive of too much.

It's very difficult, but A Parsing Guide is very specific.

I also want you to know that in the Faithful Version we have an appendix devoted to all of Paul's difficult Scriptures: Appendix Z: Understanding Paul's Difficult Scriptures Concerning the Law & Commandments of God.


What we're going to do is take a look at another Scripture. When you even read the Greek, it seems to bear it out, because there's a principle in the Greek: Sometimes the verb is understood without it being written again. That makes it difficult for people to try and understand. Here is the verse:

Romans 10:4 (KJV): "For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth."

All of the commentaries and appendices are necessary to help you understand the Bible. If you just read that, you would say that Christ ended the Law. However, that is not true. What do we read in Matt. 5? Not going to abolish it! And Jesus says in another place, 'until heaven and earth pass…' It's still here! So, this looks like a direct contradiction.

So, what are we talking about here. Remember, one of the rules of Bible study is that you follow along in context. What are verse before and what are the verses after. But this is a major verse that the Protestants turn to and say, 'Look, it says that Christ is the end of the Law.'

Romans 9:24 (KJV): "Even us, whom he hath called, not of the Jews only, but also of the Gentiles?"

It cannot mean that Christ is the Law. There's more to it. Here's why you need to understand about Judaism.

Note our in-depth study: Scripturalism vs Judaism. You need to get it, because unless you understand Judaism and what the Jews were doing… Hint: When the Jews say 'the Law of Moses,' they mean all of their traditions wrapped around the Law, and they call that the Law of Moses, as well.

Remember the chapter differences and separations were done after the text was officiated.

Romans 9:24: "Those of us whom He also called, not from among the Jews only, but also from among the Gentiles?"

What did the Gentiles know about the laws of the Jews? Unless they attended the synagogue and had been circumcised, they just looked at it as a 'weird sect.' Much of it is today. The ultra, ultra Orthodox are weird in their dress and in what they believe.

  • What did Jesus say concerning their works? They didn't keep the Law, though they professed to keep it!
  • How did they work around to make themselves righteous?

Verse 25: " Accordingly, He also said in Hosea, 'I will call those who are not My people, "My people," and those who were not beloved, "Beloved." And it shall be, in the place where it was said to them, "You are not My people," there they shall be called the sons of the living God'" (vs 25-26). Showing the whole process of conversion!

Verse 27: "But Isaiah cried out concerning Israel, 'Although the number of the children of Israel shall be as the sand of the sea, a remnant shall be saved.'" That's true of the nations, as well!

Verse 28: "'For He is accomplishing and limiting the matter in righteousness; because the Lord will limit the matter He is doing upon the earth.' Accordingly, Isaiah also said before, 'Unless the Lord of hosts had left us a seed, we would have become as Sodom, and we would have been made like Gomorrah.' What then shall we say? That the Gentiles, who did not follow after righteousness, have attained righteousness, even the righteousness that is by faith" (vs 28-30).

What kind of righteousness is that? Repentance, baptism, justification, keeping the laws and commandments of God!

Verse 31: "But Israel… [not only the ten tribes, but more particularly the Jews] …although they followed after a law of righteousness, did not attain to a law of righteousness."

Not the law of righteousness, but "…a law of righteousness." What was that? Their traditions! They thought that would make them righteous. While the temple still stood, and they could offer sacrifices, they thought that that made them righteous to God.

But everything at the temple only made them righteous to the temple, no further. The righteousness of God that He gives now comes directly from God the Father and Jesus Christ, through the power of the Holy Spirit. That keeps us justified before God, and we have to maintain that. That's another whole subject, but this is a key.

Verse 31: "But Israel, although they followed after a law of righteousness, did not attain to a law of righteousness."

I've got the Code of Jewish Law! There are all kinds of laws that they had—that they had to follow—in order to be 'righteous' and stay in the community of the Jews.

Roy Assanti use to run a motel where the Orthodox Jews would come and keep their Feast of Unleavened Bread. He would set it all up for them and everything would be Kosher. But they couldn't eat anything unless the rabbi first came into the kitchen and blessed the kitchen and bless the food. They couldn't eat it because those working to prepare it were considered Gentiles, and if they handled it—even if it was clean according to the Word of God—because it was 'unclean' or 'common.' That's why in the New Testament you have the phrase: common or unclean.

So, the law of righteousness by the Jews is also called works of law! We found that in the first part of Romans. Works of law are those things contained in the laws of Judaism. You can take it one step further. The Gentiles—even though they did not know God—had 'religion.' Take, for example, the Catholics. Have you ever seen their catechisms? They've got big think catechisms and it tells you everything what to do on every day of the year!

Do they have works of law that they do? Yes! The main one is Sunday! The next one is the Eucharist, and then the rosaries, idols, genuflexing. All of those things are Catholic works of law, which they adopted from the pagans. So, the Jews on the one hand look at all the Catholics and say that they can't have anything to do with God. They're right! Catholicism is no more than baptized paganism! That's true, but they think that with their works of law they're made right with God. The Jews think with their works of law that they're made right with God.

"…although they… [the Jews] …followed after a law of righteousness, did not attain to a law of righteousness. Why? Because they did not seek it by faith, but by works of law…" (vs 31-32).

I'm sure that the KJV says 'the works of the law.' But those two definite articles are not there! Whenever the phrase works of law is used by Paul. Those definite articles should not be added. Why?

  • When you read 'the works of the law' what do you think it is?
  • What comes to your mind? The Ten Commandments!

Another one says that you're not 'under law.' So, you can see that their theology gets all complicated. "…Why? Because they did not seek it by faith…"

Let's understand that in order to keep the commandments of God you must believe!

  • Does it take any faith to keep Sunday? No!
  • Does it take faith to keep the Sabbath? Yes!
  • Does it take faith to keep the Passover? Yes!
  • Does it take faith to keep Unleavened Bread? Yes!
  • Does it take faith to keep Pentecost? Yes!
  • Does it take faith to keep Trumpets? Yes!
  • Does it take faith to keep Atonement? Yes!
  • Does it take faith to keep Tabernacles? Yes!

Yes, it takes faith!

What are the works that you do when you have faith? The works of faith!

"…for they stumbled at the Stone of Stumbling, exactly as it is written: 'Behold, I place in Sion a Stone of Stumbling and a Rock of offense, but everyone who believes in Him shall not be ashamed'" (vs 32-33).

Another thing that happens is that they forget all of the other verses, like Matt. 19 when the young man came to Jesus and said, 'Good Master, what must I do to inherit eternal life? Jesus said, 'Don't call Me good, there's only One good and that's God!' That's quite a tricky thing.

  • Why did Jesus say that He was not good, when He was perfect?
  • Why do you suppose?
    • He had the law of sin and death in Him; He had to have that!
    • He was not God; He was man, the Son of God, but not God as God is God!

Romans 10:1: "Brethren, the earnest desire of my heart and my supplication to God for Israel is for salvation. For I testify of them that they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge" (vs 1-2).

  • What knowledge were they lacking? They substituted the knowledge of their traditions for the knowledge of God!
  • Can you have a zeal for God, but really not be following God? Look at the Jews today; yeah!

Look at how many come to the Wailing Wall to pray, weep, bow and all of this sort of thing. They have a zeal! The men are there with their hats and curls, and the women are there with their scarves and everything. They come there to pray, and what they're doing there is a work of law of tradition by the Jews! Ironically, the worst thing about that whole thing is that when they're worshipping at the Wailing Wall, they're bowing down toward the Mosque of Omar, which is just up beyond that. So, they're actually bowing to the Muslims!

So, zeal does not mean faith! Zeal with your own way and you go to God… You may have enthusiasm, but you're flat wrong! "…but not according to knowledge."

Verse 3: "For they, being ignorant… [having no knowledge] …of the righteousness that comes from God…"

Everything depended upon their traditions. Like this rabbi told Roy Assanti—when Roy told him  that if he could put aside all his traditions, we could agree—'If we got rid of all of our traditions, we would have nothing.'

"…and seeking to establish their own righteousness… [by their own works; by their own laws] …have not submitted to the righteousness of God. For Christ is the end of works of law…" (vs 3-4)—because works of law comes down from the context above!

It is put in italics because it's not directly in the original, but it is meant to be there by what Paul wrote. God is not going to end the Law! That's why the context.

He's not the end of law. That couldn't be correct, because that would be a direct contradiction of Matt. 5. IF Christ was the end of the Law, then there's no sin, no penalty. Why even have a 'religion'? Religions are laws of men seeking to please God by their own means! God only accepts you coming to Him with repentance and baptism, yieldedness and wanting to love God and keep His commandments. That's what keeps you in the righteousness of God. God gives His Spirit to you so that you become—as it says here—sons of the living God!

Verse 4: "For Christ is the end of works of law for righteousness to everyone who believes."

Let's look at another one where it is the works of the law! Everyone who professes Christianity in the world and are Sunday-keepers always have a gimmick that they want to bring about so that you can be better with God, which means better to them!

Galatians 1:6: "I am astonished that you are so quickly being turned away from Him Who called you into the grace of Christ, to a different gospel."

If you change what Christ has brought, it's a different gospel. Sunday-keeping is a different gospel, and a mighty one.

Sidebar: I wrote in my letter for January that the reason that this happened in the election was because there weren't enough people who really repented the way that they should have repented. Think of all the great horrendous sins that are out there. Some people have repented, but not enough, and all of them have their own devices to try and make it right.

The only way it can be made right is if there is repentance, forgiveness, baptism, and law-keeping! If you are keeping Sunday:

  • you are a law-breaker every week
  • you are lawless every week
  • you reject what God spoke
  • you reject that Christ is the Lord of the Sabbath Day

Think about this. They had problems with Judaism. There were those coming in and saying that you have to be circumcised. Well, they had to handle that in Acts 15. Which is greater, circumcision of the flesh? or circumcision of the mind? Of the mind! So, they were being removed.

Verse 7: "Which in reality is not another Gospel; but there are some who are troubling you and are desiring to pervert the Gospel of Christ."

Every manmade instruction added to the Word of God, or believed and followed—even though it's not directly put into the Bible—is perverting the Gospel of Christ.

Verse 8: "But if we… [Paul includes himself] …or even an angel from heaven, should preach a gospel to you that is contrary to what we have preached, LET HIM BE ACCURSED! As we have said before, I also now say again. If anyone is preaching a gospel contrary to what you have received, LET HIM BE ACCURSED!" (vs 8-9).

One of the ways that it starts to be perverted is that you begin to look to human means to attract more people.

  • How many gimmicks were they pulling in Worldwide Church of God before it collapsed?
  • Did it work?
  • Did it bring people to the Church?
  • Were they converted?
  • Did they stay when troubled times came? No, they all left!
  • Why? Because they were getting to a different Gospel!
  • What happened in the final analysis? They went to Sunday-keeping and holiday-keeping!

A little leaven leavens the whole lump!

Verse 10: "Now then, am I striving to please men, or God? Or am I motivated to please men? For if I am yet pleasing men, I would not be a servant of Christ…. [they need to take heed to that] …But I certify to you, brethren, that the Gospel that was preached by me is not according to man; because neither did I receive it from man, nor was I taught it by man; rather, it was by the revelation of Jesus Christ. For you heard of my former conduct when I was in Judaism…" (vs 10-13).

This is why God called Paul, so that Judaism could not take hold in the Church! Yet, even today, what is one of the main problems with the Churches of God? Judaism! Jews for Jesus! They have a zeal for Jesus, but not according to the Gospel.

  • What Passover do they keep? The 15th!
  • What else do they have? Prayer shawls, tassels, etc.!

"…when I was in Judaism, how I was excessively persecuting the Church of God and was destroying it; and I was advancing in Judaism far beyond many of my contemporaries in my own nation, being more abundantly zealous for the traditions of my fathers" (vs 13-14)—works of law!

We will show next week where the definite articles are there by Paul and it has nothing to do with Judaism.

Verse 15: "But when it pleased God, Who selected me from my mother's womb, and called me by His grace, to reveal His own Son in me, in order that I might preach Him as the Gospel among the Gentiles…" (vs 15-16)—then Paul explains what happens!

Gal. 2 is interesting because after Paul wrote his epistles, he forwarded them to Peter. Peter could have deleted this section, because it involved him directly, but he didn't. He just said that 'Paul wrote things that are difficult to understand!

Just before that Paul said that he came and saw Peter, James and John, and 'I didn't give them one hour of anything different from what I have done.' So, he didn't care who they were. The truth is, IF you don't stay with the Truth, it doesn't matter who you are! It doesn't matter how many times you've been ordained. What matters is:

  • Do you love God
  • Do you keep His commandments
  • Do you teach the Truth of God

This involves Peter: What happened in Acts 10? Remember that before that time, all the preaching went to the Jews, none of it went to the Gentiles. God had to show Peter by a vision that he had to go to what eventually became Cornelius' house. Here was an Italian—a soldier; a Centurion—who had quite a house and he was praying to the true God. An angel came and told him to send for Peter down in Joppa.

Peter was having this vision when a soldier and two men came to find out where he was, because Peter was to go back and talk to Cornelius. So, because of the rigidity of the traditions of the Jews they couldn't even assemble or meet or shake hands with a Gentile. That was a work of law by Judaism. So, Peter preached to them.

Remember the first thing when he came into Cornelius' house, and Cornelius was going to bow down and worship him? Peter said to him, 'Don't worship me, I'm a man just like you.' Then Peter said a little later, 'God has shown me that I should call no man common or unclean.' This was a revelation. He preached the Gospel and God sent the Holy Spirit on them before they were baptized. They were baptized afterward, because there was no way that Peter was going to be convinced to baptize them unless God sent the Holy Spirit first.

So, Peter said, 'Who can forbid baptism?' Then he stayed a number of days. When Jerusalem heard about it, the elders in the church got all mad at Peter and said, 'You went into Gentiles.' Works of law!

We're going to see another work of law right here that causes problems. These were certain ones who came down from James. Jerusalem always thought that they were better than anybody else anywhere.

Galatians 2:11: "But when Peter came to Antioch, I withstood him to his face because he was to be condemned… [right in front everybody, the whole Church] …for, before certain ones came from James, he was eating with the Gentiles…. [no problem] …However, when they came, he drew back and separated himself from the Gentiles, being afraid of those of the circumcision party" (vs 11-12).

What is James going to think about me? I'm eating with the Gentiles!

Verse 13: "And the rest of the Jews joined him in this hypocritical act, insomuch that even Barnabas was carried away with their hypocrisy."

So, Peter had to 'nip this in the bud' before it took hold. There were times in the Churches of God that the ministers would set themselves up above all the brethren. When a Feast came the brethren would wait on the ministers and deacons. It should be the other way around! The ministers should have been there waiting on the brethren, helping them.

Verse 14: "But when I saw that they did not walk uprightly according to the Truth of the Gospel, I said to Peter in the presence of them all, 'If you, being a Jew, are living like the Gentiles… [mingling and eating with them] …and not according to Judaism…'"

Works of law means Judaism until the temple was destroyed and sacrifices at the temple. After that works of law means Judaism.

"…why do you compel the Gentiles to Judaize?" (v 14)—separate! Think how that would be today:

All right, you people over here are privileged. You people over there go eat the crumbs.

Verse 15: "We who are Jews by nature—and not sinners of the Gentiles—knowing that a man is not justified by works of law…" (vs 15-16).

The KJV says, 'the works of the law.' Those two definite articles are not there! It's by works of law! What law was he following? A law of Judaism! Today it could be:

  • a law of Catholicism
  • a law of Judaism
  • a law of Islam
  • a law of Hinduism

All of them are null and void!

"…but through the faith of Jesus Christ, we also have believed in Christ Jesus in order that we might be justified by the faith of Christ…" (v 16).

That's literally "…the faith of Christ…" His own faith! That kind of faith that is given to us upon repentance and the receiving of the Holy Spirit of God. He gives us love, joy, faith and all the works of the Holy Spirit. We have a certain amount of faith ourselves, but we need the faith of Jesus Christ!

"…and not by works of law; because by works of law shall no flesh be justified" (v 16).

Everything must be done according to the Word of God!

  • not according to what we think
  • not according to what it looks right

The Word of God! That's what it has to be. This kind of thing is repentance, baptism, receiving the Holy Spirit of God and then that opens up the whole vista of everything of growing in grace and knowledge.

Go online to truthofGod.org and download the one hour video that I did: True Fellowship with God! That's what God wants. When you have a law in the flesh like separating, like they had here with Judaism, or that you can't eat this bread because it was touched by a Gentile; or you can't go into this building because Gentiles own it.

The Truth of God sets us free from all of it. Those kinds of laws never make you right with God. It may make you right with leaders of the movement of that, and they may commend you for it, but that's not right with God.

Verse 17: "Now then, if we are seeking to be justified in Christ, and we ourselves are found to be sinners…"—by doing works of law!

If you do work of law you're sinning, because God never said to.

"…is Christ then the minister of sin? MAY IT NEVER BE! For if I build again those things that I destroyed…" (vs 17-18).

He forsook everything with Judaism! Remember, Paul was zealous that he was taking them to prison, making sure that some were killed, exterminated.

"…I am making myself a transgressor. For I, through law, died to works of law…" (vs 18-19).

What law was it that he was following? The Laws of Christ!

"…in order that I may live to God. I have been crucified with Christ, yet, I live. Indeed, it is no longer I; but Christ lives in me…." (vs 19-20).

That's the whole purpose of true Christianity! Christ in us; the Father in us!

"…For the life that I am now living in the flesh, I live by faith—that very faith of the Son of God… [Christ's faith in us] …Who loved me and gave Himself for me. I do not nullify the grace of God; for if righteousness is through works of law, then Christ died in vain" (vs 20-21).

You can see how adding one word—the—changes everything. People get all mixed up and confused as to:

  • what is right
  • what is wrong
  • what is truth
  • what they should do
  • how they should conduct their lives

What we're to do is:

  • love God with all our heart, mind, soul and being
  • love each other

We're all sinners, and that's just the way it is. God will help us and provide for us.

Next week we will cover some of the other things that are necessary, but read Appendix Z: Understanding Paul's Difficult Scriptures Concerning the Law & Commandments of God

Scriptures from The Holy Bible in Its Original Order, A Faithful Version (except where noted)

Scriptural References:

  • Proverbs 30:5-6
  • Matthew 16:18-19
  • Matthew 5:17-18
  • Matthew 16:19
  • Matthew 18:15-20
  • Romans 3:20-21
  • Romans 2:13
  • Romans 10:4
  • Romans 9:24-33
  • Romans 10:1-4
  • Galatians 1:6-16
  • Galatians 2:11-21

Scriptures referenced, not quoted:

  • 1 Corinthians 5
  • Revelation 2; 3
  • Acts 15; 10

Also referenced:

Message: You Are Important to God.

Church at Home: Was Peter Ever in Rome?


  • A Parsing Guide to the Greek New Testament by Nathan E. Han
  • Code of Jewish Law by Ganzfried & Golden

Appendix Z: Understanding Paul's Difficult Scriptures Concerning the Law & Commandments of God (The Holy Bible in Its Original Order)

In-Depth Study: Scripturalism vs Judaism

DVD: True Fellowship with God

Transcribed: 1/14/20

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