Paul’s letter to Galatians
One of the strong points Paul took up in his letter to Galatians was about some people mixing worldly traditions and beliefs into Christianity.
Judaism is far from Christianity, no doubt our scriptures (OT) are the same but yet Judaism is a religion while Christianity is not. Jews claims to worship the same God but for them this God is an unknown God (they do not know who YHWH is nor what the word means) that is why in Hosea the Lord said when He comes as Ishi (man) they will no longer call Him Baali (meaning ‘my Lord’ as an spiritual being). But they rejected Him when He came as man therefore never came to know Him. All that they did in His name were traditions which were without understanding. It was these traditions which Jesus hated and when they saw Jesus did not do their traditions they hated Jesus.
When Paul preached there were Christians of Jewish origins that were inducing Jewish traditions into Christianity and Paul was very angry with them. Due to their lack of maturity they were causing the downfall of others. They were putting yokes of works of the flesh as way to salvation. What angered Paul most was, that Peter and Barnabas were also in this group. Paul could not hold back his anger and rebuked Peter (since he was more mature than the others) in the presence of the people.
One needs to understand Paul to understand his level of anger. Paul was born Saul and Saul means ‘desired’ which was not a bad name yet his name was changed. We need to understand why? Saul was a very learned in the laws of the Jew and his teacher was the top most authority in this matter, at that time. In today’s sense Saul would be equivalent to a merit student passed from the top most university in the world. This man Saul was renamed Paul by the people because of the change projected of his character. The name Paul means ‘little’ and this man of great Jewish knowledge and understanding suddenly projected a very humble character of someone learning and growing in true knowledge and understanding. When they saw this great man projecting this little image they renamed him Paul.
Even though Paul had this humble image yet when he saw Peter and others misguiding people by teaching the people Jewish traditions in the name of Christ, he got very angry and could not hold his anger. So we see this anger was not a small anger for it came from a cool person and was more like a volcano that hit Peter and the others. No doubt Peter did not take it in a bad way but as a correction and later in his letter acknowledged Paul was right and was more knowledgeable than him.
In today’s message the Lord is telling us to be like Paul. He wants us to know that we are always in a learning stage and there is a lot for us to yet know about scriptures and of the Kingdom of God. But that does not mean we act like blind people who cannot see anything. Of what we know we should discern and in this process of discerning little things we will know more. We also need to not hesitate to correct people who are doing wrong, but our correction should not cause them to fall. When we correct people its sole purpose should be to bring them to the right path. Correction should not be like pushing a person off the hill. Our rebuke should be with love that builds and prospers that person so what we say and what we say is important; but if that person is suborn then we need to at least save those whom that person is destroying.
Lord we pray your people do not be silent spectators when they see people misleading others. Your Word says even if we do not support them, being silent is still considered as support. Lord we pray we know how and when to rebuke with love. Let us not only have courage to rebuke and wisdom as how to rebuke but also not loss the purpose of rebuke by having a heart for the lost…
This prayer we make in Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Hosea 2:16 And it shall be at that day, saith the LORD, that thou shalt call me Ishi; and shalt call me no more Baali.
Galatians 2:9 – And when James, Cephas, and John, who seemed to be pillars, perceived the grace that was given unto me, they gave to me and Barnabas the right hands of fellowship; that we should go unto the heathen, and they unto the circumcision.
11 But when Peter was come to Antioch, I withstood him to the face, because he was to be blamed.
12 For before that certain came from James, he did eat with the Gentiles: but when they were come, he withdrew and separated himself, fearing them which were of the circumcision.
13 And the other Jews dissembled likewise with him; insomuch that Barnabas also was carried away with their dissimulation.
14 But when I saw that they walked not uprightly according to the truth of the gospel, I said unto Peter before them all, If thou, being a Jew, livest after the manner of Gentiles, and not as do the Jews, why compellest thou the Gentiles to live as do the Jews?
15 We who are Jews by nature, and not sinners of the Gentiles,
16 Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.
Hebrews 5:14 But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.
1 Corinthians 5:12-13
12 For what have I to do to judge them also that are without? do not ye judge them that are within?
13 But them that are without God judgeth. Therefore put away from among yourselves that wicked person
- Day of Judgement! Day of wonders!
- Day of Judgement! Day of wonders!