Galatians 2:4-6 ESV
“Yet because of false brothers secretly brought in—who slipped in to spy out our freedom that we have in Christ Jesus, so that they might bring us into slavery— to them we did not yield in submission even for a moment, so that the truth of the gospel might be preserved for you. And from those who seemed to be influential (what they were makes no difference to me; God shows no partiality)—those, I say, who seemed influential added nothing to me.”
I believe this passage of Scripture is in the context of the Judaizers who were trying to convince Christians that they had to be more like Jews, and that they had to keep some of the Old Covenant ceremonial, liturgical, and dietary laws and restrictions as part of their salvation. And we have some groups of Messianic Jews today who are going into gatherings of what are called “churches,” and they are trying to convince Christians to be more like Jews and to keep some of those Old Covenant ceremonies, et al.
I don’t know whether or not they are teaching what they are teaching today as something they believe is necessary for our salvation, but they are convincing many Christians that being more like a Jew or doing some of the things the Jews did under the Old Covenant will somehow enhance their Christian experience or somehow it will bring them closer to God or they will be more spiritual if they do these things. But what they are promoting is not the truth. We do not need to add any of those things on to our salvation.
And then we have people today who are legalists, and some of them are huge hypocrites. My dad was one of them. We were taught not to drink, smoke, play cards, dance, or go to movies. But my dad was an abuser to his wife and to his children in some of the worst and most severe ways. So he was definitely a huge hypocrite. He knew the Scriptures intellectually. He attended a strong evangelical gathering of what is called “church” for 86 years, but he didn’t apply his head knowledge to his life in practice.
And then we have people today who are teaching a cheapened form of the true gospel of Christ, making the gospel like picking up fast food at McDonald’s restaurant. The faith they are teaching is of man and is very superficial, for it makes no requirements of its adherents to live holy lives pleasing to God. It does not require death to sin and living to righteousness nor obedience to our Lord. Thus, many professers of faith in Christ are still walking in sin and they are not walking in obedience to Jesus Christ.
But the gospel of Jesus Christ teaches us we must be crucified with Christ in death to sin and raised with Christ to walk in newness of life in him, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness. And we are to die daily to sin and to self and walk in obedience to our Lord’s commands (New Covenant). For if we do not, but we continue in deliberate and habitual sin, and not in walks of obedience to our Lord, and not in living holy and righteous lives, then the Scriptures teach we do not know God, he does not know us, we are not saved, and heaven is not our eternal destiny.
So, please take this to heart! Do not believe everything you hear, read, or think you see, but test everything against the Scriptures (in their context) to see if what you are being taught is of God or if it is of man and/or of the devil. Read the Scriptures in their context, and let the Lord teach you the truth, and then follow the truth in obedience to the Lord. For one day many who say, “Lord, Lord,” in this life are going to hear Jesus say, “I never knew you. Depart from me you workers of lawlessness.” Please take this to heart.
[Matt 7:21-23; Matt 24:9-14; Lu 9:23-26; Rom 1:18-32; Rom 2:6-8; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-14,24; Rom 12:1-2; Rom 13:11; 1 Co 6:9-10,19-20; 2 Co 5:10,15,21; 1 Co 1:18; 1 Co 15:1-2; 2 Tim 1:8-9; Heb 9:28; 1 Pet 1:5; Gal 5:16-21; Gal 6:7-8; Eph 2:8-10; Eph 4:17-32; Eph 5:3-6; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-17; 1 Pet 2:24; Tit 2:11-14; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6,24-25; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Heb 3:6,14-15; Heb 10:23-31; Heb 12:1-2; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15]
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He Keeps Me Singing
by Luther B. Bridgers, 1910
There’s within my heart a melody
Jesus whispers sweet and low,
“Fear not, I am with thee, peace be still,”
In all of life’s ebb and flow.
All my life was wrecked by sin and strife,
Discord filled my heart with pain;
Jesus swept across the broken strings,
Stirred the slumbering chords again.
Feasting on the riches of His grace,
Resting ‘neath His sheltering wing,
Always looking on His smiling face –
That is why I shout and sing.
Though sometimes He leads through waters deep,
Trials fall across the way,
Though sometimes the path seems rough and steep
See His foot-prints all the way.
Soon He’s coming back to welcome me
Far beyond the starry sky;
I shall wing my flight to world’s unknown,
I shall reign with Him on high.
Jesus, Jesus, Jesus –
Sweetest name I know,
Fills my every longing,
Keeps me singing as I go.
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