Tuesday, November 15, 2005


In Galatians Paul denounced attempts by Jewish Christians to reintroduce aspects of the law into Christian life.

Galatians 2: 4 false brethren who had been secretly smuggled in [to the
Christian brotherhood]; they had slipped in to spy on our liberty and the
freedom which we have in Christ Jesus, that they might again bring us into
bondage [under the Law of Moses].

Jude highlights a different problem with the church that is more or less opposite to the problem Paul exposes.

Jude 4 For certain men have crept in stealthily. Their doom was predicted long
ago, ungodly (impious, profane) persons who pervert the grace (the spiritual
blessing and favor) of our God into lawlessness and wantonness and immorality,
and disown and deny our sole Master and Lord, Jesus Christ (the Messiah, the
Anointed One).

In Galatians we have those who would reimpose the Law, in Jude there are those who bring in lawlessness. Two almost opposite problems brought into the church by men trying to pervert the gospel.

Both groups of men are described as entering by "stealth" or secretly". I also see these two situations have something else in common.

1) The Galatian example has people replacing the grace of God with a need to observe the Law. Salvation is again made dependant upon OUR actions rather than on the grace of God. It comes back to earning salvation through works. It centres on self and self-effort. How much do we need to DO to be acceptable to God.

2) Jude’s example exposes an abuse of the grace of God. It takes it to extremes. Instead of looking at how much do we need to do to be acceptable to God (salvation through the law); these people take the other extreme – how much can we get away with without becoming unacceptable to God.

Both of the above centre on SELF. Both are centred on the acts of man.

Both situations take the centrality of the gospel away from Jesus and His sacrifice, in effect denying Him and our need of Him.

Thursday, November 03, 2005


Phil 2: 1 Therefore if there is any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affection and mercy, 2 fulfill my joy by being like-minded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind. 3 Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. 4 Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others.