One True Gospel and Many False Ones

Paul knew the danger of the doctrines of Judaism
(Galatians 1 & 2)

Fred R. Coulter—January 25, 2020

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Greetings, brethren! Welcome to Sabbath services!

If you've been watching anything on the impeachment thing, you've seen the slickest lies in the world, and a great misinterpretation of the severity of what they claim is a crime. With that, I think it's very interesting and made me stop and think: How did Lucifer convince a third of the angels to go with him? There may be a lot of extra of that power in the Democrat Party today! Look at all the lies that have been spoken, and when you understand that Satan is the father of lies, you understand, I think, how he was able to maneuver.

Think on this: Belief is powerful! We are to have faith, and faith is the movement of belief! You believe in faith! They work together.

If you believe a lie and you really think it is true, you believe with the same intensity as you would believe the truth.

  • How does God get around that?
  • What was the first warning that Jesus gave to the disciples? Let no one deceive you! First warning!
  • How do we keep from succumbing to lies that sound blessedly true?
  • Can you think of a Scripture?
  • How do we do it? Prove all things, test the prophets whether they are of God or not!

The worst field of deceit is in the field of religion!

John 14 is a Scripture that we go over, and it's a keynote of the Passover. Jesus told the disciples that He was going away:

John 14:4—Jesus said: "'And where I am going you know, and the way you know.' Thomas said to Him, 'Lord, we do not know where You are going; how then can we know the way?'" (vs 4-5). They didn't understand it because they didn't have the Spirit of God, yet!

Verse 6: "Jesus said to him, 'I am the Way, and the Truth, and the Life; no one comes to the Father except through Me.'"

So, we take the Scriptures and we compare everything to the Word of God. That's why God had the New Testament originally written in Greek. It's a very precise language. When you get the Interlinear you will see that 80-90% of the words must be translated exactly as it is. You can't change that. Now, some words have more than one meaning, but it is very accurate and very true. You have the phrase, 'answered and said.' There is no other way to translate it. You can't translate it 'he was answering and saying' because of the way that the verb is constructed.

Where do problems come in with the Scriptures? The translators, and those who found deficient Greek manuscripts, which mostly come out of Alexandria and Vaticanus! That's where the problems come, because modern critical thinking of the Greek goes toward those Greek manuscripts rather than the Received Text.

Here is the basic one that we always go to. What's another one? What did Jesus say about the words that He spoke? They are Spirit and they are Life! They are spiritually discerned or understood!

The Church at Corinth was one of Paul's greatest problems. In 1-Cor. 15 he says, 'What is it that some of you are saying that there's no resurrection?' Why? Because they were coming out of the Greek religions where it was 'go to heaven or hell.'

1-Corinthians 1:19: "For it is written, 'I [Jesus Christ] will destroy the wisdom of the wise… [all the philosophy and wrong thinking] …and I will nullify the understanding of those who understand.'" Nullify is to make it as though it never existed!

Verse 20: "Where is the wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the disputer of this age? Did not God make foolish the wisdom of this world? For since in the wisdom of God the world through its own wisdom did not know God…" (vs 20-21).

  • Why? You must come to Christ! That's where we started
  • How do you do that? On God's terms!
  • What's the first thing that Jesus said when He came into to Galilee to preach the Gospel? Repent and believe the Gospel, for the Kingdom of God is at hand!

It was the Kingdom of God in the person of Christ! He was right there!

"…it pleased God to save those who believe through the foolishness of preaching. For the Jews require a sign…" (vs 21-22).

Read the first chapters of the book of Acts and you will find that God gave the Jews sign after sign after sign, plus all the healings that Jesus did before He was crucified. Of all of those things, what was the last great sign that Jesus did before He was arrested? He raised Lazarus from the dead, and He deliberately left him in the tomb four days to make sure that he was dead!

Remember when they were told to roll away the stone, Martha said to Him, 'Lord, he stinks by now!' That's no problem to God! He said, 'Lazarus, come forth!' and those who saw it rejoiced, though some of them were angry and ran to the officials so that they might get rid of Jesus. They wanted a sign!

"…and the Greeks seek after wisdom… [Greek: 'sophia' and 'philo sophia' is lover of wisdom] …but we proclaim Christ crucified. To the Jews it is a cause of offense, and to the Greeks it is foolishness; but to those who are called—both Jews and Greeks—Christ is God's power and God's wisdom, because the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men. For you see your calling, brethren…" (vs 22-26).

God is starting from the bottom up; He's not working from the top down

"…that there are not many who are wise according to the flesh, not many who are powerful, not many who are highborn among you. Rather, God has chosen the foolish things of the world" (vs 26-27). So, why should we get all excited and uplifted in importance?

"…so that He might put to shame those who are wise; and God has chosen the weak things of the world so that He might put to shame the strong things" (v 27)—because they're going to be converted and resurrected, and become the sons and daughters of God! They can take care of any of the strong things of man—period! Hands down!

Verse 28: "And the lowborn of the world, and the despised has God chosen—even the things that are counted as nothing—in order that He might bring to nothing the things that are."

Think about that! When you go on a trip and you see all of these people. Get on a plane and there are three seats on each side, and you've got to be thin to walk down the isle. When I get on a plane, I always tease the stewardess and say, 'You know, this isle is just too wide.'

What's going on that everyone on planes and trains will be thinking about? Best laid plans of men? The great wisdom of men? The Coronavirus! They have shut down eleven cities in China. Have you watched the news on what they eat? They had last year swine flu where they had to kill 150-million swine!

This year they have the Coronavirus! How did that start? Well, it showed the picture of the food that they eat: alligators, snakes, rats, koalas, donkeys, horses, cats, dogs and salamanders!

What did God say? See what happens with all the 'wisdom' that they have? Everything that they're doing over there, and they think that they're so wise, but they're so dishonest because they steal everything.

What is the basic command of God? These are the foods that you shall eat…! and These are the foods that you shall not eat…! Why? Because He loves us and He doesn't want us to get sick with things like Coronavirus!

The city where the Coronavirus started is Wuhan, China, and that's where the Chinese have the biological warfare. So, there is some thought that maybe some of the Coronavirus escaped from there. Then they also can have a tactic where they can send people who are infected to other countries to spread it to them. Just think how absolutely fragile the whole system is! Highly developed and everything dependant upon electricity, and the wisdom of men in peace and in war!

Let's see what God wants us to do, because there's only one Gospel and many false gospels.

Verse 26: "For you see your calling, brethren, that there are not many who are wise according to the flesh, not many who are powerful, not many who are highborn among you. Rather, God has chosen…" (vs 26-27). That's interesting! Not called, but chosen! Chosen comes from repentance and baptism!

"…God has chosen the foolish things of the world, so that He might put to shame those who are wise…" (v 27).

How does that work today? When we see all the foolishness of what men are doing, especially in this impeachment thing, we can see where they're absolutely wrong!

"…and God has chosen the weak things of the world so that He might put to shame the strong things. And the lowborn of the world, and the despised has God chosen—even the things that are counted as nothing—in order that He might bring to nothing the things that are" (vs 27-28).

The Gospel of God is the same yesterday, today and forever, as the Bible says.

Colossians 1:21: "For you were once alienated… [from God] …and enemies in your minds by wicked works…"

That's why conversion is in the mind, not outward actions alone. Some of the greatest con-artists can have such wonderful actions on the outside, but they do it to deceive! So, God wants it on the inside. That's where the wickedness comes that God is looking to.

"…but now He has reconciled you in the body of His flesh through death, to present you Holy and unblamable and unimpeachable before Him; if indeed you continue in the faith grounded and steadfast, and are not moved away from the hope of the Gospel, which you have heard, and which was proclaimed in all the creation that is under heaven; of which I, Paul, became a servant" (vs 21-23).

The Gospel has gone out and continues to go out! Where is the Gospel contained? In the whole Bible! That's the Gospel! If we think about how many different ways that it's out there now, it's quite a thing!Let's see something about the Gospel and the Truth!

1-John 2:15: "Do not love the world, nor the things that are in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him, because everything that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pretentious pride of physical life—is not from the Father, but is from the world" (vs 15-16). Who is the 'god of this world'? Satan the devil!

Verse 17: "And the world and its lust is passing away… [that is in our lives, down through the generations to the return of Christ] …but the one who does the will of God abides forever."

This tells you what happened in the last part of the apostolic age. We will see how the Church was literally coming apart.

Verse 18: "Little children, it is the last time…" For the apostolic age it was the last time, but that doesn't mean that it is the end of the world!

"…and just as you have heard that the antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have risen up, by which we know that it is the last time. They went out from among us, but they were not of us because if they were of us, they would have remained with us; nevertheless, they left that they might be exposed to show that they all were not of us" (vs 18-19).'

  • How did that happen?
  • What did they do?
  • What did they change?
  • What were the Jews preaching? Christ is an imposter!
  • What were the Greeks preaching? You don't need to keep the Law!

Both of those elements are here in this Epistle of John!

Verse 20: "But you have the anointing from the Holy One, and you have knowledge of all things pertaining to salvation." Obviously, you don't have knowledge of all things! This can only be of the things for salvation!

Verse 21: "I did not write to you because you do not know the Truth, but because you know it, and you understand that not one lie comes from the Truth." That's why you prove everything!

  • What's the greatest sin of human beings in God's Word? To change it! To add their own traditions!
  • What happens with that? It's like it was during the days of Jesus:
  • you make the void the Word of God
  • you make void the commandments of God

because of traditions! Yet, when people do that, and they accept it as from God, they are convinced that they are right, and the whole thing is upside down. When they look at those who are in the Churches of God, who keep the commandments of God, Sabbath and the Holy Days.

Revelation 14:12: "…here are the ones who keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus." That tells us that it takes faith to keep the commandments, the faith that comes from God!

1-John 2:22: "Who is the liar if it is not the one who denies that Jesus is the Christ?…. [that's what the Jews did] …He is the antichrist—the one who denies the Father and the Son." Now it's both!

The Jews want a sign and the Greeks want wisdom (1-Cor.).

Verse 23: "Anyone who denies the Son does not have the Father either." Jesus said, 'I know that the Word of God does not dwell in you' (book of John)!

Verse 24: "Therefore, let what you have heard from the beginning dwell in you; if what you have heard from the beginning is dwelling in you, then you will be dwelling in the Son and in the Father."

What have the Catholics done? There are three major things that they have done!

  • Sunday-keeping, rejecting the Sabbath
  • trinity, saying there are three Gods
  • elevation of Mary to the Queen of Heaven and be the mediatrix for human beings replacing Christ

The Catholics who are devoted… and there are a lot of evil spirits that keep them in bondage to those things. Another one is:

  • idols

Verse 25: "And this is the promise that He has promised us: eternal life. These things I have written to you concerning those who are leading you astray" (vs 25-26). Coming along with interesting sounding doctrines!

Verse 27: "But you yourselves have dwelling in you the anointing that you received from Him; and you do not have need of anyone to indoctrinate you… [in other teachings] …for the same anointing instructs you in all spiritual things… [plus we have the Word of God now] …and is true, and is not a lie; and if you do exactly as it has taught you, you will be dwelling in Him. And now, little children, dwell in Him, so that when He is manifested we may have boldness, and not be put to shame before Him at His coming. If you know that He is righteous, you also know that everyone who practices righteousness has been begotten by Him" (vs 27-29). That's the complete thing with that!

2-John is filled with love, Truth and commandment-keeping! Every verse there has that!

2-John 10: "If anyone comes to you and does not bring this doctrine…"—the doctrine of Christ: His death and resurrection and ascension to heaven that He is the Son of God.

"…do not receive him into your house, and do not say to him, 'Welcome!' For anyone who says, 'Welcome!' to him is partaking in his evil works" (vs 10-11).

How bad was this insurrection within the Church?

Verse 12: "I have many things to write, but I do not wish to convey these things to you with paper and ink; but I hope to come to you and speak face to face in order that our joy may be completely full." That's how all of these different doctrines came about!

Let's see what Paul writes concerning these things; 1-Timothy 1:2: "To Timothy, my true son in the faith: Grace, mercy and peace from God our Father and Christ Jesus our Lord." Paul has something like this in every one of his epistles, because he is writing what God wants him to write!

Verse 3: WhenI was going to Macedonia, I exhorted you to remain in Ephesus, in order that you might solemnly charge some not to teach other doctrines… [teachings] …nor to pay attention to myths and endless genealogies, which lead to empty speculations rather than to edification from God, which is in faith" (vs 3-4).

People can speculate about a lot of things. Sometimes you can speculate, and you can guess the Truth, but unless you prove that it is Truth after you have speculated and you've determined it might be true, then it's possible that it could not be true.

Verse 5: "Now, the purpose of the commandment is love out of a pure heart, and a good conscience, and genuine faith." There can't be anything greater than this one little verse to define conversion!

  • "…love out of a pure heart…" What does God want to do? Change our heart and mind, in good conscience; not devious and deceitful!
  • "…and genuine faith"If you truly believe in God the Father and Jesus Christ! And you truly believe the Word of God!

Verse 6: "From which some, having missed the mark, have turned aside unto vain jangling."

Do you remember the man who was a Greek scholar? Stavrinides! {of the former WCG}.That was the wisdom of this world and Satan the devil. That was the biggest test against the Church, because they had become so lackadaisical and bringing in too much of the world. That test came along and he, in his Greek philosophy, changed the nature of God! When you do that, you're denying the Father and denying the Son!

Verse 7: "Desiring to be teachers of the Law, neither understanding what they are saying, nor what they are strongly affirming."

Why? Because they believe a lie with the same conviction that they should believe the Truth!

Verse 8: "Now we know that the law is good, if anyone uses it lawfully"—meaning not living in transgression!

So, here comes along Sunday-keeping. That was very appealing to a lot of the Greeks. They did not want to be counted in with the Jews, because if you're keeping the commandments of God, you're counted with the Jews! The Jews profess to keep the commandments of God, but they don't keep the commandments of God the way that God says.

So, when someone came along and said, 'Look, why should you suffer this persecution. We can meet on Sunday and the Romans won't come and get us.' A lot of people said, 'I don't know about that.' Come and try it and you'll like it, and see if it's spiritual or not. Guess what? They had enough of the Truth… Isn't that the way it always starts out, with enough of the Truth? Gradually, it metamorphoses! Look where it's grown to!

Verse 9: "Understanding this: that law is not enacted for a righteous man…" If you're righteous, that tells you that you're keeping the commandments of God!

  • righteous because you have the Spirit of God
  • righteous because you've had your sins forgiven

"…but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and sinful, for the unholy and profane, for slayers of fathers and slayers of mothers, for murderers" (v 9). Today we can add abortion ad infinitum!

Sidebar: Last year worldwide, guess how many abortions there were? 42-million! All of that is being stored up for God and Christ's returning!

Verse 10: "For fornicators, for homosexuals, for kidnappers, for liars, for perjurers, and for any other thing that is opposed to sound doctrine." Think about that! Sound doctrine and Law-keeping go hand-in-glove!

Verse 11: "According to the Gospel of the glory of the blessed God, with which I was entrusted."

Verse 16: "But for this reason I was shown mercy in order that in me first Jesus Christ might demonstrate all long-suffering, for an example to those who would afterwards believe on Him unto eternal life. Now to the King of eternity, the incorruptible, invisible, and only wise God, be honor and glory into the ages of eternity. Amen" (vs 16-17).

Notice that Paul tells Timothy to hold the faith and remember his ordination:

Verse 19: "Holding to the faith and a good conscience. For some, having cast aside a good conscience..."

If you believe a lie, what happens? Sooner or later you have a corrupted conscience! That means that sin no longer affects you in the same way that it would if you had the Spirit of God and the Laws of God. You become inured to it.

"…have made shipwreck in regard to the faith; of whom are Hymeneus and Alexander, whom I turned over to Satan in order that they may learn not to blaspheme" (vs 19-20).

1-Timothy 3:14: "These things I am writing to you, hoping to come to you shortly; but if I should delay, you have these things in writing, so that you may know how one is obligated to conduct oneself in the house of God, which is the Church of the living God, the pillar and foundation of the Truth" (vs 14-15).

That's what you should always find in the congregations of God, the Truth! The Truth of God; the truth of things.

Verse 16: "And undeniably, great is the mystery of Godliness: God was manifested in the flesh, was justified in the Spirit, was seen by angels, was proclaimed among the Gentiles, was believed on in the world, was received up in glory."

Look at the difference. Here comes the enemy, and remember that Satan the devil is always the enemy. Satan the devil is going to come after the Church with great ferocity in the future. All you have to do is look at the atheists, the agnostics and those who can't tolerate any form of Christianity. They are going to be very dangerous in the future.

1-Timothy 4:1: "Now, the Spirit tells us explicitly that in the latter times some shall apostatize from the faith, and shall follow deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons."

There are teachings and doctrines of demons, and many of them will sound very good!

Verse 2: "Speaking lies in hypocrisy, their consciences having been cauterized with a hot iron; forbidding to marry…" (vs 2-3).

Look at all the problems that has caused the Catholic Church. That's just one. The only time the Catholics are right is when they read the Scriptures correctly. Every other thing they are totally wrong!

"…and commanding to abstain from meats, which God created to be received with thanksgiving by the faithful, even by those who know the Truth" (v 3). Tie in Lev. 11 and Deut. 14!

Verse 4: "For every creature of God designated for human consumption is good, and nothing to be refused, if it is received with thanksgiving."

Protestants read this and say, 'Let's have our barbeque pork, and our shrimp, lobster, clams and all of this sort of thing.'

Verse 5: "Because it is sanctified by the Word of God and prayer." So, what God says not to eat, don't eat! What God says is good to eat, eat! And you'll probably not come down with the Coronavirus!

Verse 13: "Until I come, devote yourself to reading, to encouragement, and to doctrine. Do not neglect the spiritual gift that is in you, which was given to you by prophecy with the laying on of the hands of the elderhood. Meditate on these things; give yourself wholly to them so that your growth in the faith may be apparent to all. Be diligent with yourself and with the doctrines; continue in them. For in doing this, you will save both yourself and those who hear you" (vs 13-16). Look at the responsibility that Paul lays upon the ministry!

That's a very important things, because Paul wrote in Rom. 2, to the Jews, 'You who preach the Law, why are you breaking the Law? You who think you can teach others, don't you teach yourself?' That's why an elder is going to be held accountable for everything. So, he has got to stay:

  • true
  • faithful
  • yielded to God
  • doing the things that God wants him to do

1-Timothy 6:3: "If anyone teaches any different doctrine, and does not adhere to sound words, even those of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the doctrine that is according to Godliness, he is proud and knows nothing. Rather, he has a morbid attraction to questions and disputes over words, from which come envy, arguments, blasphemy, wicked suspicions, vain reasonings of men who have been corrupted in their minds and are destitute of the Truth—men who believe that gain is Godliness. From such withdraw yourself" (vs 3-5).

That's what God has been doing with the Church ever since the big blowup! How many will stick with the Truth?

(go to the next track)

Let's look at a few Scriptures that goes right along with what we're talking about here, especially when you look at government and you look at churches, and any organization. 

Proverbs 29:2: "When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice; but when the wicked rule, the people mourn." You can take that and apply that to many different things!

Verse 4: "The king establishes the land by justice, but he who takes bribes tears it down." That is exactly what has happened here in America!

Verse 12: "If a ruler hearkens to lies, all his servants are wicked." We can apply that to how a church is run, and directly to our lives and what we're covering here: Truth and doctrine!

Verse 14: "A king who faithfully judges the poor, his throne shall be established forever."

Now, here's one for the world today. Remember that Jesus said that lawlessness will be multiplied!

Verse 16: "When the wicked are multiplied, transgression increases; but the righteous shall see their fall."

Sooner or later it catches up with them, but the ultimate of that will be the return of Christ and the resurrection of the saints.

Proverbs 30:5—this applies to exactly what we are doing here: "Every Word of God is pure; He is a shield to those who put their trust in Him. Do not add to His words, lest He correct you and you be found a liar" (vs 5-6). That is exactly what has happened to the Church many times over!

2-Timothy 1:13: "Hold as the standard for doctrine the sound words that you heard from me, in the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. Guard the good thing that was committed to you by the Holy Spirit that is dwelling in us" (vs 13-14).

Notice how bad things were getting in the Church. We've experienced some of this in our lifetime, but back then it was everywhere.

Verse 15: "You know this, that all those who are in Asia have rejected me… [Why? Because they brought in the false doctrine and began to believe those!] …of whom are Phygellus and Hermogenes."

2-Timothy 2:13: If we are unfaithful… [someone goes wrong] …He remains faithful…"—Christ always remains the same; Christ the same yesterday, today and forever, and 'I, the Lord, change not.

Something that comes along that's a difficulty, and contrary to the Word of God, then trust in God and it will be exposed for what it is.

"…—He cannot deny Himself. See that they remain mindful of these things, earnestly charging them in the sight of the Lord not to argue over words that are not profitable in any way, but which lead to the subverting of those who hear" (vs 13-14). So, it gets down to this:

  • How strong are we in the faith?
  • Do we really believe it?

Here's how to make sure that you do it right; v 15: "Diligently study[put forth a lot effort] …to show yourself approved unto God, a workman who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the Word of the Truth."

That's how all false doctrines start--we've covered a lot of them—by wrongly dividing the Scriptures! One of the major ones was that the Father was the Lord God of the Old Testament. That was wrongly dividing the Word of God!Then believing the conclusion of it, and convincing others. How can you convince others? Maybe they're not studying and proving things!

Verse 16: "But avoid profane and vain babblings because they will only give rise to more ungodliness." That's exactly what has happened!

Just before the Church fell, they had 120,000 attending the Feast of Tabernacles, and they had an income that year of $200-million!

  • it's not how much you have
  • it's not the number of people involved

It is, the way Christ looks at it, that you are converted and stay converted! That's what God wants!

2-Timothy 3:16: "All Scripture is God-breathed…"

Notice how urgent Paul was in writing to Timothy, and how desperate that this apostasy was coming about.

2-Timothy 4:1: "I charge you, therefore, in the sight of God, even the Lord Jesus Christ, Who is ready to judge the living and the dead at His appearing and His Kingdom: Preach the Word!…." (vs 1-2). That's what needs to be preached!

  • not the ideas of men
  • not the pet doctrines of men

Preach the Word, the Truth of God!

"…Be urgent in season and out of season… [showing that they were keeping the Holy Days, otherwise there wouldn't be seasons] …convict… [that they will be convicted of their sins, there shortcoming and come to God] …rebuke… [when necessary] …encourage… [that's what we need lots of, lots of encouragement] …with all patience and doctrine."

So, a lot of the things that were happening were those who became ministers and elders who did not fully believe. Then Paul names four of them in these two epistles, that He turns them over to Satan because of the way that they were acting.

Here's what happens, v 3: "For there shall come a time when they will not tolerate sound doctrine…" They won't take line upon line, here a little, there a little, precept upon precept, and all of that they won't do.

"…but according to their own lusts…" (v 3)—rather than submission to God!

That's why it's so important, and you've hear me say, in God we live, move and have our being! Especially in the Church with the Holy Spirit of God! Even the people in the world live, move and have their being by God! But we, with the Spirit of God, how much moreso!

"…they shall accumulate to themselves a great number of teachers…" (v 3). There's always someone who's going to come around and…

I saw this picture showing a wolf in sheep's clothing. It showed the wolf with all the sheep's fleece on it, and his nose up in the air and two little sheep right alongside of it.

I thought that was really a well-placed picture to show how these things work. There are those who infiltrate to try and establish themselves in positions of authority. If they get established in positions of high authority, what can they do? They bring in those Who they want and put them in charge! That's what happened to Worldwide! That's why it went down so fast.

"…having ears itching to hear what satisfies their cravings; and they shall turn away their own ears from the Truth; and they shall be turned aside unto myths" (vs 3-4). That's what's wrong with fake Christianity today! Everything they do is a myth except with properly reading the Scriptures.

  • Sunday is wrong
  • idols are wrong
  • their salvation is wrong
  • they're doing away with the Law is wrong

but people like it! People like to be told that all you have to do is believe in Jesus. 'Do you believe in Jesus?' Oh yes, I believe in Jesus!' You're saved!' How can there be a falling away if you're saved once forever? It won't be!

Let's come to the book of Galatians and see how absolutely treacherous this was. We'll cover certain things in the book of Galatians.

Galatians 1:1: "Paul, an apostle, not sent from men nor made by man…" After he was converted he went down into Arabia and was taught for three years by Christ through visions and directly!

"…but by Jesus Christ and God the Father, Who raised Him from the dead; and all the brethren who are with me, to the churches of Galatia" (vs 1-2).

Some people like to say that that means Gaul in Southern France, but that's not true. This is in Asia Minor.

Verse 3: "Grace and peace be to you from God the Father and our Lord Jesus Christ, Who gave Himself for our sins, in order that He might deliver us from the present evil world…" (vs 3-4).

It was evil back then, and think about the multitude of evil that they have today. Watch all of these ads of all the hightech stuff, and they get these goggles and put them on and it's a make believe reality. You get movies on Netflix and people watch so many things that are nothing by fables and stories and lies.

So, when you come along and say that that's a sin, they're not going to accept it as sin. So, there has to be something happen in their lives in order for them to come to the point that they see that they need God. But the way this world, it's a terrible mess out there!

"…according to the will of our God and Father; to Whom be the glory into the ages of eternity. Amen" (vs 4-5).

I've been accosted by people who say that I slam other ministers. Well, I don't slam them; I point out where they're wrong when they have false doctrine. We will see what Paul did, and I'm very mild compared to Paul.

Verse 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."

What did we just read? Don't add anything or take away anything! That's how you get a different gospel.

Verse 7: "Which in reality is not another Gospel…"—because there's no such thing as another Gospel. There's one Gospel! The Gospel of Jesus Christ through God the Father!

"…but there are some who are troubling you and are desiring to pervert the Gospel of Christ" (v 7). How dangerous is that? Look at what Paul wrote in the next few verses in the strongest possible terms!

Verse 8: "But if we… [including himself and all the other apostles] …or even an angel from heaven, should preach a gospel to you that is contrary to what we have preached, LET HIM BE ACCURSED!" That's really slamming them pretty hard! He repeats it:

Verse 9: "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!"

Who were the ones coming around? You had two factors:

  • the Jewish factor; and a lot of those who came as Jews (2-Cor. 11) give themselves out as apostles of Christ, but are not

Who are they really following? Satan the devil!

  • then you have the Greeks that come along and say that if you read 'this Scripture' this way, then it looks like everybody goes to heaven

Besides, the Jews have it wrong on the resurrection, but we go to heaven, and that the only resurrection was Christ.

Paul had to correct them strongly in 1-Cor. 15 that they didn't believe in the resurrection of the dead. So, let them be accursed!

Notice how Paul describes what he's doing; v 10: Now then, am I striving to please men, or God?…. [that takes away all politics; all favoritism] …Or am I motivated to please men? For if I am yet pleasing men, I would not be a servant of Christ." Though they may claim themselves to be servants of Christ!

Verse 11: "But I certify to you, brethren, that the Gospel that was preached by me is not according to man."

Even though when he got done with his three years of being taught by Christ, he went up to Jerusalem and only stayed two weeks. He talks about that a little later. Those in Jerusalem didn't want to receive him.

Verse 12: "Because neither did I receive it from man, nor was I taught it by man; rather, it was by the revelation of Jesus Christ." That's a special teaching!

Paul being a Pharisee, God called him so that would eliminate, as much as possible, Judaism coming into the Church.

Verse 13: "For you heard of my former conduct 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).

The traditions of men really are the key! That if the teachings of men come in and get codified as traditions to keep then you start really getting into trouble!

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, I did not immediately confer with flesh and blood, nor did I go up to Jerusalem to those who were apostles before me; but I went away into Arabia, and returned again to Damascus. Then, after three years, I went up to Jerusalem to become acquainted with Peter, and I remained with him fifteen days. But I did not see any of the other apostles, except James the brother of the Lord" (vs 15-19).

What happened was that Barnabas was on the ball. He said that with Paul being here, we've got to get him out of town, because there's no way that he can be here in Jerusalem. People will hear that he is here and they will come and kill him.

So, Barnabas took Paul down to Caesarea and put him on a ship and sent him to where he came from up in Tarsus. He remained there a number of years until the first church of the Gentiles was raised up in Antioch of Syria. So, the apostles decided to send Barnabas down there to help out with all the new Gentile converts that they had in Syria. Then Barnabas went over to Tarsus and found Paul and brought him back to Antioch. Antioch became Paul's quasi headquarters a little later.

Verse 20: (Now the things that I am writing to you, behold, before God, I am not lying.) Then I came into the regions of Syria and Cilicia. But I was unknown by face to the churches in Judea which are in Christ; they only heard, 'The one who once persecuted us is now preaching the Gospel—the faith which he once destroyed.' And they glorified God in me" (vs 20-24).

Let's look at what happens here. Gal. 2 becomes very important. One of the big questions with the Jewish converts is that when a Gentile was converted he had to be circumcised, regardless of how old he was.

The Jews would take care of the circumcision on eighth day, so the question came with the Pharisees (Acts 15). They came saying that you cannot be saved unless you keep the Law of Moses.

That's where a lot of Protestants get all discombobulated. To a Pharisee, what does the Law of Moses mean? All the traditions encircling the Truth of God! So, circumcision of adults became a great problem in the Church. There were those false Jewish ministers out there, and a lot of them would say, 'I was in Judea' or 'I was in Galilee' and 'I saw Jesus, I heard Him preach and He said this or that, He said the other thing.'

Galatians 2:1: "Then after fourteen years I again went up to Jerusalem with Barnabas, taking Titus with me also. And I went up according to revelation, and laid before them the Gospel that I preach among the Gentiles, but privately to those of repute, lest by any means I should be running, or had run in vain. (But indeed, Titus, who was with me, being a Greek, was not compelled to be circumcised.)" (vs 1-3).

Why? Because conversion is the circumcision of the heart, which is a higher level of circumcision.

Verse 4: "Now, this meeting was private because of false brethren brought in secretly, who came in by stealth to spy out our freedom which we have in Christ Jesus, in order that they might bring us into bondage."

So, it was all men must be circumcised regardless of the age, and follow the traditions of the Jews that encircled the Law of God.

Note sermon series: Scripturalism vs Judaism. You cannot understand the problems of Judaism and how bad it was unless you get that extended series. I read some amazing quotes that the Jews themselves have given, and how that it was such a furor in the Church.

Remember the first Gentile who was converted? Cornelius! Even before God let Peter know about the situation, Cornelius and his household were offering up prayers to God and alms to the local synagogue, the Romans! So, God sent an angle to tell Cornelius that you find Peter—he was at the house of another: Simon—and he'll come down here and tell you what you need to do.

Peter had the vision of all these unclean things, and what did he say? Oh Lord, I'm so happy that we can no eat them. Today we could say that we can be just like the Chinese. NO! He said, 'I've NEVER eaten anything common or unclean!' then the three men came and he went with them and went to Cornelius' house. What did Cornelius do? Peter walked in and Cornelius was bowing down to worship him! Peter said, 'I'm a man like you, but the Jewish law is that a Jew shall not keep company with a Gentile.'

So, Peter went there, preached the Gospel and Cornelius' whole household was converted, and God sent the Holy Spirit on them before they were baptized, to show that God was calling them! Protestants come along and say that you don't need to be baptized. No! they were baptized afterward.

What other way could God show Peter that the ways of Judaism are not going to be in the Church? That was quite a thing!

Some of those who were with Peter when he went down there, went back to Jerusalem and told the elders there. Peter came back and they said, 'What is this that you went into those who were uncircumcised?'

Peter told them all about the story, and they praised God and said that God has given them the Holy Spirit the same as us. But in Judaism, even though that was mentioned, Gentiles must be in a separate category than the Jews.

Also note our sermon series on Circumcision Wars, and that's really in great detail.

Verse 4: "Now, this meeting was private because of false brethren brought in secretly, who came in by stealth to spy out our freedom which we have in Christ Jesus, in order that they might bring us into bondage… [of the traditions of men] …to whom we did not yield in subjection, not even for one hour, so that the Truth of the Gospel might continue with you" (vs 4-5).

He didn't say that they were well intentioned. No, they were not well intentioned.

Verse 6: "But the Gospel that I preach did not come from those reputed to be something. (Whatever they were does not make any difference to me…"

That's something you always need to understand: When the Truth is violated by those who are in charge, you do not have to put up with it. If you go to them and bring out what is right, and they don't change, then you do like Paul, you leave!That's what happened to the whole Church!

"…God does not accept the person of a man.) For those who are of repute conferred nothing upon me. But on the contrary, after seeing that I had been entrusted with the Gospel of the uncircumcision, exactly as Peter had been entrusted with the Gospel of the circumcision; (for He Who wrought in Peter for the apostleship of the circumcision wrought in me also toward the Gentiles); and after recognizing the grace that was given to me, James and Cephas and John—those reputed to be pillars—gave to me and Barnabas the right hands of fellowship, affirming that we should go to the Gentiles, and they to the circumcision. Their only request was that we remember the poor, which very thing I was also diligent to do" (vs 6-10).

Now, here's the problem: I want you to notice how Paul was absolutely uncompromising, because he knew the dangers of the encroachment of Judaism. Peter was at fault!

Verse 11: "But when Peter came to Antioch, I withstood him to his face because he was to be condemned… [Paul did this publicly, not privately] …for, before certain ones came from James…" (vs 11-12)—politics! Those in Jerusalem are more important. No, they're not more important, and they were not in charge!

"…he was eating with the Gentiles. However, when they came, he drew back and separated himself from the Gentiles, being afraid of those of the circumcision party" (v 12).

'Oh, I don't want to get a bad report back in Jerusalem.' This was a tradition of the Jews that you don't keep company with, eat with, or have anything to do with Gentiles. This was a tremendous problem! Let's see what Paul did:

"…However, when they came, he drew back and separated himself from the Gentiles, being afraid of those of the circumcision party" (v 12).

All of those coming down from Jerusalem ate over here, Peter and Barnabas went over there with them, and over there were all 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.

That was a very dangerous situation doctrinally speaking, and fellowship speaking.

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, and not according to Judaism, why do you compel the Gentiles to Judaize?'"

If you set them aside in a separate place, you are making them follow a tradition of Judaism. I was a meeting where the deacons and ministers were up on the stage having other deacons come down and take the best of the food from the pot luck and take it up there to give it to the ministry.

The minister in charge said to me, 'Fred, come on up here.' I said, 'No, I'm down here…' He told me three times, and I said, 'No, I'll just get my food here.'

He destroyed the church; he took over the church from me and I was visiting later, and he ended up committing adultery with one of the nicest women in the church. Terrible situation! You see the whole lesson of a little leaven leavens the whole lump applies in many, many different ways!

So, Paul called Peter out before all of them!

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…" The King James says, 'the works of the law' and that is absolutely incorrect! Those two definite articles are not there in the Greek and should not be inserted. When they were inserted, they made no difference by making them italicized to show that they weren't in the original. It's "…works of law…"

Those of you who have The Holy Bible in Its Original Order, A Faithful Version, read:

  • Appendix Z: Understanding Paul's Difficult Scriptures Concerning the Law and the Commandments of God\
  • Appendix R: What is Meant by "the Works of the Law"?

What were the works of law? The laws of Judaism and all the things that they did! As long as the temple stood, they could still have the sacrificial laws.

For those who are uneducated and they read the King James and almost all other translations—the works of the law—they say that you don't need to keep the Law. That is a complete false interpretation, false translation and should never have been.

When I first understood that—BING!—that was like turning on a great floodlight!

"…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, and not by works of law…" (vs 15-16).

Works of law would justify you to the temple as long as the temple stood. Works of law of Judaism would justify you to the Pharisaic system of Judaism, not to God in heaven above. Our justification and forgiveness of sin comes through faith and repentance, and belief in Jesus Christ! That is to:

  • cleanse our mind
  • cleanse our heart
  • draw us to God

That's far greater than all the works of law! Look at all the works of law that the Jews were doing, and what they were plotting against Christ. To kill Him, to destroy Him!

  • How many times were they out to get Him? So much for the love of God!
  • What did Jesus say of them in John 5? I know you, you do not have the Word of God dwelling in you!

He also said to them, 'I know that you don't have the love of God.' Remember the Pharisee who was the doctor of the Law and ask them Him what was the greatest Law and commandment? Love God! That's the start!

You can probably think of some areas in the Church where they had this to do, and this not do and so forth. They added to it and it shouldn't have been there.

"…because by works of law shall no flesh be justified" (v 16)—before God in heaven above! That's what that means!

We are justified by the sacrifice and shed blood of Jesus Christ through faith by the operation of God, and no work can substitute for the sacrifice of Jesus Christ!

So, if they have all of these works from Judaism, that would substitute what God wants us to do. He wants us to:

  • believe in Him and continue believing in Him and Jesus Christ
  • believe in His laws and commandments
  • believe in His Word
  • believe in His Truth

Verse 17: "Now then, if we are seeking to be justified in Christ, and we ourselves are found to be sinners, is Christ then the minister of sin? MAY IT NEVER BE!" That's what Peter and Barnabas were doing separating with the other Jews.

The Jews came down from Jerusalem all high-falutin and political and wanting to do things that they did in Jerusalem. Don't do it down there where the Gentiles are.

Remember what happened when Paul finally ended up back in Jerusalem? When they found him in the temple? They wanted to kill him!

Verse 18: "For if I build again those things that I destroyed…" Everything he did in Judaism was destroyed with the baptism in Christ, and faith and belief in Christ!

"…I am making myself a transgressor" (v 18). That's what Peter and the other Jews were doing!

Verse 19: "For I, through law, died to works of law… [the law of the faith 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)—by the power of the Holy Spirit!

  • that comes from heaven above
  • that comes from the Throne of God
  • that comes from the Temple of God in heaven above

All these other physical works and things in the exterior that they were doing were not of God! Paul was doing his utmost to make sure that it never got into the Church.

"…For the life that I am now living in the flesh, I live by faith—that very faith of the Son of God, Who loved me and gave Himself for me" (v 20).

That faith comes from God, not by doing a work of law. That has nothing to do with whether we keep the commandments of God. That is how we stay justified to God and having forgiveness of our sins.

Verse 21: "I do not nullify the grace of God; for if righteousness is through works of law, then Christ died in vain."

Paul lambasted those people directly! He didn't care if they were from James. He didn't care what Peter and Barnabas thought of him. They were going against God, and going against the Truth and following the works of men, which leads to destruction! They had to be corrected publicly and vociferously!

Scriptural References:

  • John 14:4-6
  • 1 Corinthians 1:19-28, 26-28
  • Colossians 1:21-23
  • 1 John 2:15-21
  • Revelation 14:12
  • 1 John 2:22-29
  • 2 John 10-12
  • 1 Timothy 1:2-11, 16-17, 19-20
  • 1 Timothy 3:14-16
  • 1 Timothy 4:1-5, 13-16
  • 1 Timothy 6:3-5
  • Proverbs 29:2, 4, 12-16
  • Proverbs 30:5-6
  • 2 Timothy 1:13-15
  • 2 Timothy 2:13-16
  • 2 Timothy 3:16
  • 2 Timothy 4:1-4
  • Galatians 1:1-24
  • Galatians 2:1-21

Scriptures referenced, not quoted:

  • 1 Corinthians 15
  • Leviticus 11
  • Deuteronomy 14
  • Romans 2
  • 2 Corinthians 11
  • Acts 15
  • John 5

Also referenced:
Sermon Series (transcript book with CD):

  • Scripturalism vs Judaism
  • Circumcision Wars

From The Holy Bible in Its Original Order, A Faithful Version:

  • Appendix Z: Understanding Paul's Difficult Scriptures Concerning the Law and the Commandments of God
  • Appendix R: What is Meant by "the Works of the Law"?


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