Verse of the Day Devotion: Galatians 1:10

“For am I now seeking the favor of men, or of God? Or am I striving to please men? If I were still trying to please men, I would not be a bondservant of Christ.” – Galatians 1:10

Paul here is speaking to the church in Galatia regarding the fact that there were some within their church that were deserting the true gospel and were now following a false gospel.  In fact, he was amazed this was happening.  “I am amazed that you are so quickly deserting Him who called you by the grace of Christ, for a different gospel; which is really not another; only there are some who are disturbing you and want to distort the gospel of Christ.” Galatians 1:6-7.  The word gospel, which is the Greek word ‘euaggelion’, pronounced ‘yoo-ang-ghel’-ee-on’, meaning good news, and in this context, the great news of our salvation being available because of the shed blood of Christ.  What Paul here was saying is that there were many leaving the true gospel and beginning to follow a message that was not good news or the true gospel.

Then Paul states that if anyone preaches or delivers a message regarding the gospel contrary to what he and his coworkers have already delivered, then they are to be under a curse.  “But even if we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to what we have preached to you, he is to be accursed!  As we have said before, so I say again now, if any man is preaching to you a gospel contrary to what you received, he is to be accursed!”  Galatians 1:8-9.

As stated above, the true gospel is the great news of our salvation being available because of the shed blood of Christ.  It defines the payment of the penalty of our sins by the death, burial and resurrection of Christ.  Therefore, a different gospel is one which denies the necessity of a simple dependence on what Christ did on our behalf, namely the death, burial and resurrection of Christ.

There are many false gospels out in our world.  The more prevalent ones are the gospels of Islam, Buddhism, and Hinduism.  These do not even reference Christ but state the following of their god is the good news.  However, there are a lot of Christian cults that are deceiving many, such as Oneness Pentecostalism which teaches there is no trinity and the speaking in tongues is required for salvation.  Then there is Christian Science that says Jesus was not the Christ and there is no sin.  And Jehovah Witnesses that teach Jesus was Michael the Archangel, that He did not rise from the dead in Human form and the Holy Spirit is God’s impersonal active force, not a person.

And why do we switch to these false gospels?  It is because many teachers preach what man wants to hear, not necessarily what is true.  “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires and will turn away their ears from the truth and will turn aside to myths.” 2 Timothy 4:3-4. This includes what is considered the prosperity gospel, antinomianism which states a Christian can sin because we are not subject to the law, and other Christian heresies.

In closing, it is not our job to preach and teach a gospel where the intent is to please men and seek their favor.  It is to preach the truth whereby men are told they are under the penalty of sin and only the death, burial and resurrection of Christ leads to salvation and leads to a Holy walk with Him.  Some will be angry and walk away because this is more than they expected or desire.  However, many will accept and believe this message and truly become a child of God.  This is our calling, and we need to put aside the teachings from wolves in sheep’s clothing and teach the full truth.  If not, then we and those who accept the message we give will come under a curse, and this is not a place we want to be. William Funkhouser MDiv, ThD, Founder and President of True Devotion Ministries, Inc.

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