Galatians Part 12 - Galatians 2:3-5

B. Regrettably, false prophets/teachers all too often find reservoirs prepared to receive their polluting doctrine. The unstable, morally weak and the disaffected are drawn to the tune of these Pied Pipers. 2PE 2:14; 2TI 4:2-4. C. Heretics (those who openly advance contrary doctrine) must be warned before rejection. TIT 3:10. (1) They may be ignorantly advancing heresy and only need compassionate correction. (2) But if they insist on opposing the truth (and themselves), they must be identified as heretics, disciplined and avoided (TIT 3:10-11; ROM 16:17-18). This the Galatians had failed to do and Paul’s words in ACT 20:29 resonate. 2. The abundant warnings about the leaven of the Pharisees were here confirmed. MAT 16:6-12. 3. True to form, these Pharisees were seeking to impose unnecessary, unbearable burdens upon redeemed saints by affixing O.T. law and ritual to grace to effectuate Christ's finished work of redemption. MAT 23:4 c/w GAL 3:13. A. By this, they were indebting their “converts” to themselves for their eternal salvation and also for their good standing before God, which means that all Christ had done to redeem them and all Paul had done to perfect them with knowledge of that redemption were nothing without them (the Judaizers). B. This is bondage to men and the impossible, not liberty. GAL 5:1-3. 4. No platform was given to the Pharisees to promote their heresy at the council. v. 5. A. The church of Jesus Christ is not a vehicle for open-forum promotion of contrary opinions like the heathen court of the Areopagites on Mars' hill (ACT 17:19-21). God is neither the author nor the condoner of confusion. 1CO 14:33; REV 2:20. B. Heresy must be checked promptly lest it spread and infect others. 2TI 2:16-18; TIT1:10-11. C. No pastor, having taken the oversight of a flock (1PE 5:2), should sit idly by while divisive doctrine scatters the sheep. JOH 10:12; 1TI 1:3. D. If need be, a pastor may require his congregation to make an oath concerning a point of doctrine which is being challenged. HEB 6:16. E. If a pastor is thought to be in error, it is the responsibility and province of church members to search the scriptures (ACT 17:11) to prove all things (1TH 5:21) and address the pastor privately to give him a chance to correct himself or correct them with sound doctrine. TIT 1:9. F. If the established teaching of a church is to be publicly called into question, there is one way to do so: the church court, not by subversive whispering or gainsaying. (1) An elder/bishop/pastor who, being warned, yet insists on publicly advancing unbiblical doctrine, may with sufficient witnesses be formally accused and publicly censured. 1TI 5:19-20. (2) Assuming the charge and judgment were valid, such a minister is no longer blameless (1TI 3:2) and is henceforth disqualified of the office. c/w 1CO 9:27. vs. 6-10 1. These verses make it plain that the Jerusalem council agreed with Paul's doctrine. As he said, they “...added nothing to me” (v. 6). They recognized his apostleship and gospel as valid and in no way implied that the one thing he lacked was the promotion of circumcision for justification. 2. Though the other apostles did precede him, they did not exceed him in authority and doctrine. 2CO 11:5-6. A. Lest any should think that position, office, or relationship precludes the fair judgment of a person's calling and labors, Paul reminds us, “...God accepteth no man's person...” (v. 6). B. The man who is in agreement with God need not take a backseat to others of higher estimation. JOB 32:9; PSA 119:100; 1TI 4:12. C. Impartiality is a Christian's responsibility at law, in the house of God and in secular life. DEU 1:17; 1TI 5:21; JAM 2:1-4, 8-9; EPH 6:5-9. 3. The events of the Jerusalem council were important and relevant to Paul’s letter. ACT 15:6-29. A. Peter reminded the church that when he first was sent to the house of Cornelius, God made it very clear to him and his Jewish companions that He had His children among the Gentiles (ACT 15:6-9). God demonstrated His acceptance of believing, uncircumcised (and as yet unbaptized) Gentiles as brethren by giving the Holy Ghost to them as He had done to the Jewish believers at Pentecost. ACT 10:34-35, 44-45; 11:15-18. B. God indeed had ended the separation of Jew and Gentile as touching men’s approach unto Himself and their inheritance in Christ. ROM 3:29-30; EPH 2:11-18. (1) With the acceptance of uncircumcised Gentiles into the church, the significance of fleshly circumcision officially ended. (2) The token of righteousness and acceptance with God is faith like Abraham had before he was circumcised. ROM 4:9-12.

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