Books of the Book: Galatians

Glorying In The Cross

Three Angels Broadcasting Network

Program transcript

Participants: Mark Howard & Jim Howard


Series Code: GBOTB

Program Code: GBOTB00013A

00:22 Welcome to Books of the Book, I am Pastor Mark Howard
00:24 Pastor of the Emmanuel Institute of evangelism for the
00:26 Michigan Conference of Seventh-day Adventist as well
00:28 as the Pastor for the Gobels Seventh-day Adventist church
00:30 in Gobels Michigan and I am here at my co-host,
00:33 my brother Jim.
00:34 Yes, my name is Jim Howard and I am the Pastor of the
00:36 Detroit Metropolitan Seventh-day Adventist Church and
00:39 South Lyon Church Seventh-day Adventist Church
00:41 both in Michigan.
00:42 And we have been studying the book of Galatians, we are
00:45 actually going to conclude our study today in Galatians
00:49 Chapter 6 and it has been fantastic message the apostle
00:54 Paul has been delivering here about the one and
00:56 only true gospel.
00:57 Jim, he caps it off with his heart appeal to the Galatian
01:03 believers, this church he raised up.
01:06 We are going to Galatians Chapter 6 and if you have your
01:10 Bible nearby go ahead and grab it and turn with us in
01:13 your Bible to the New Testament book of Galatians.
01:16 You go to the New Testament Matthew, Mark, Luke, John,
01:19 Acts, Romans, 1 and 2 Corinthians and then Galatians.
01:23 We are going to Galatians Chapter 6 and we're going to
01:26 start in verse 11.
01:28 Galatians 6:11 the apostle Paul says, "see what large
01:32 "letters I have written to you with my own hand!"
01:37 Initially as we read that Jim, it doesn't communicate
01:42 a lot, what is he talking about?
01:46 - what are these large letters? - Right!
01:48 So he's writing something and was he boasting in his writing?
01:50 When we realized what the background is here it really
01:56 tells us a lot about the apostle Paul.
01:57 You see Paul had a challenge of some sort, evidently
02:02 with his eye sight and if we go back to 2 Corinthians
02:07 in Chapter 12 Paul talks about having
02:08 a thorn in the flesh. - right!
02:10 Most scholars believe that that thorn in the flesh
02:13 had something to do with his impaired eyesight after
02:16 viewing the Lord Jesus glorified on the road to Damascus.
02:20 We pick up a little bit of that idea in the book of
02:24 Galatians 4:15 where he was talking about the Galatian
02:29 believers and how much they had at one time been willing
02:33 to sacrifice for him.
02:34 He says in Galatians 4:15, "what then was the blessing you
02:38 "enjoyed? For I bear you witness, that if possible,
02:42 "you would have plucked out your own eyes and given
02:45 "then to me. " So the idea was there was something
02:49 with his eyes that were impaired.
02:52 Something else that we find is that Paul often had his
02:55 letters written by a scribe, but then he would sign
02:58 them with his own hand.
02:59 For example 1 Corinthians 16:21, if we turn there we
03:04 see, notice it says here, "the salutation with my
03:10 "own hand-Paul's. "
03:13 In other words he would have somebody else write the
03:15 letter and then he would sign it, evidently because
03:17 with his in paired eyesight it was harder for him,
03:21 he didn't have glasses so when he was trying to write
03:24 these things out it was hard for him to focus on what
03:26 he was writing, so someone else would write and
03:28 he would sign it. - just to give the authenticity!
03:31 - just to give an authenticity.
03:32 So when we coming into Galatians 6:11 and he says,
03:36 "see with what large letters I have written to you. "
03:39 In other words in order for him to see what he was
03:42 writing, he had to write really big.
03:43 His point to the Galatians is that I have not had
03:46 somebody else write this letter, I'm not just signing it.
03:49 I myself have written this whole letter.
03:52 It's communicating to us the burden that
03:54 Paul had for these people.
03:56 If we continue there in Galatians 6:12, he starts
04:03 entering deeper into this appeal.
04:06 It says, "as many as desire to make a good showing in
04:09 "the flesh, these would compel you to be circumcised. "
04:13 He's talking about these Judaizing Christians and the
04:17 theme of our discussion through- out the study of Galatians
04:20 who came in with a perverted gospel in which they said
04:24 you can believe in Jesus Christ but if you really want
04:28 to be saved you will have to be circumcised.
04:30 Circumcision became somewhat of a substitute for faith
04:33 in Christ, a substitute of genuine obedience.
04:36 Then he says, "these who will compel you to be
04:38 "circumcised, only that they may not suffer persecution
04:42 "for the cross of Christ. For not even those who are
04:46 "circumcised keep the law, but they desired to have
04:49 "you circumcised that they may boast in your flesh. "
04:52 Right here in verse 12 it says, as many as desire
04:55 "to make a showing in the flesh.
04:57 These Judaizing Christians who are deceiving the
05:01 Galatians believers that Paul had brought in through the
05:05 gospel, their motives were not totally pure.
05:09 They make a good showing in the flesh, it gives you
05:12 a sense of reputation.
05:13 There was something about it that it wasn't for the
05:16 believers themselves, but something they were trying
05:19 to do for themselves.
05:20 That is totally contrary to the spirit of Christ
05:23 because we learn in Philippians that Jesus made Himself
05:26 of no reputation, when He came to this earth Jesus
05:30 didn't come to be born into a palaces.
05:32 He was willing at every stage to be considered
05:37 something different than He was, falsely represented.
05:40 All sorts of things, and that was because reputation
05:43 was not what was most important to Jesus,
05:45 it was character, it was saving souls,
05:48 reaching out to people.
05:49 These Judaizers didn't really have, the apostle Paul was
05:54 telling them, look these guys do not have your best
05:56 interest in mind, they are just doing this for themselves.
05:59 You know Jim, you use at work Judaizers and just for the
06:03 benefit of our viewers, a Judaizers means that they are
06:06 trying to bring people into the Jewish faith.
06:09 Now it is true that the apostle Paul would have
06:11 considered himself a faithful Jew because he had really
06:15 adhere to the Jews but the Jewish religion of his day
06:18 the religion itself was a substitute for following Christ.
06:24 What was interesting was in order to avoid the persecution
06:29 what they were really trying to do was retain their old
06:33 unspiritual life and then they were trying to bring others
06:37 into that old unspiritual life.
06:39 So they wouldn't suffer persecution.
06:42 They had formed their own religion and it is interesting
06:47 how sometimes people will get on some hobbyhorse, their
06:53 own pet idea and they like the feeling they get when they
06:58 can get other people on that pet idea.
07:01 It makes them this guru over the masses, we are all in
07:05 this club and it gives them a clubhouse mentality.
07:09 It seems that that was what was going on here.
07:12 - You're right, you're exactly right.
07:14 There is another passage in Galatians where the
07:15 apostle Paul's specifically talks about the motivation
07:20 behind these false teachers.
07:21 In Galatians 4:17 he says, "they zealously court you,
07:26 "but for no good; yes, they want to exclude you, that you
07:30 "maybe zealous for them. "
07:32 So what they were doing was trying to find followers.
07:35 You know a lot of times the reason people try to find
07:38 someone to follow them is because if they are not in a
07:41 right position and they want to justify themselves,
07:44 if they can get a whole bunch of other people to agree
07:47 with them that it helps to validate where they are.
07:49 It also gives them a greater sense of power and influence
07:52 and there is all sorts of false motivations that can come
07:56 when we are trying to gain followers after ourselves.
07:58 Well let me interject this, I want you to hold the thought
08:01 but this may be confusing to the readers.
08:04 It says they would zealously exclude you, so what you
08:08 have been talking about is including them.
08:10 The point he is making is that they were trying to bring
08:14 them in but the idea of excluding, some translations
08:18 will say including because it is like, well they don't
08:22 seem to be trying to exclude but the point that is being
08:25 made here is again back to the clubhouse mentality.
08:29 It is like you have to do this and this to be part of
08:34 this club, and so what they do is they exclude people
08:38 who, if you're not going to be circumcised you can't
08:41 be part of our club.
08:42 By excluding certain people it vaunts them up, but then
08:48 they exclude, his wording is they zealously court you
08:54 and then they want to exclude you that
08:56 you maybe zealous for them.
08:58 It's a strange phenomenon that is part of human nature,
09:02 when we are excluded from something, the carnal nature
09:06 seems to want to do it all more.
09:08 If I can't have it, what I can't have it?
09:10 I want to be a part of that, I want to be part of this
09:13 elite group and that is what he is commenting on here
09:16 about excluding them, but false teachers are excluding
09:20 ultimately because they want these Galatians to be
09:24 desired to be enamored with their ways
09:28 of thinking and their religion.
09:30 The other thing that strikes me here is that they
09:34 zealously court you, so you have this picture of
09:37 courtship where even though they are excluding, they
09:41 also when you have false teachers involved, there is
09:45 usually some flattering going on.
09:47 You know when you're courting somebody there is a sense
09:50 in which you are wanting them, I can see you having
09:54 some great potential with us.
09:55 So they court and give them a sense that they could
09:58 really be special if they were circumcised.
10:00 They are trying to allure them into this, but it is not
10:04 for the benefit of these believers,
10:07 it is for their own benefit.
10:08 Now one thing the apostle Paul says that is kind of
10:11 interesting here though is right after verse 17 it says,
10:15 "but it is good to be zealous in a good thing always,
10:18 "and not only when I'm present with you. "
10:20 He said it's good to be zealous, so even though
10:23 they were zealous in a wrong way, the apostle Paul wants
10:25 to make the point that it is a good thing to be zealous.
10:28 One of the biggest problems that we have in the Christian
10:30 Church is complacency, laziness.
10:33 We seem to forget the devil is one of the hardest
10:37 workers out there, and he is zealously doing his work.
10:40 He has got his representatives who are zealously doing
10:43 their work and he doesn't sit back.
10:45 - incidentally Paul was one of those representatives.
10:47 - that's right, he was.
10:48 So when we sit back and just ignore that and say oh well,
10:52 the Lord will take care of it all.
10:54 If we ignore the obvious problems that are existing,
11:00 ignore our own need to be spreading the gospel as we
11:04 talked about last time, restoring those who are in need
11:07 of help in winning those who are in need of being won, then the
11:11 Devil is going to, because of his zealousness, he is
11:14 going to gain battles, he will not win the ultimate war
11:17 but he is going to gain battles that we could have won
11:19 if we hadn't been sleeping on the job.
11:21 That is exactly right, so the apostle Paul is
11:23 I was mentioning head that zeal, Jesus Himself
11:26 The Bible said in the story of the cleansing of the
11:29 temple and John chapter 2, that it applies the text
11:33 from the Old Testament Word says David had written
11:36 zeal, for thy house is eating me up.
11:38 In other words Jesus was zealous for the cause of God.
11:41 The problem is that these people were zealous for
11:44 the wrong thing for sure.
11:45 So we are going to go into verse 12 and continue on.
11:51 Well, you had gone into verse 12 about the circumcision.
11:56 Notice the language here, "these will compel you to be
12:00 "circumcised, only that they may not suffer persecution
12:04 "for the cross of Christ. "
12:05 So this is interesting, they are wanting to compel this
12:10 circumcision for the purpose of not suffering persecution
12:15 and this is fascinating to me just looking at this from
12:19 the perspective of Christianity today.
12:22 The tendency today of many Christians is to not want to
12:29 be that different from the world around us.
12:31 And we come up with reasons, we say well we wouldn't
12:35 reach as many people if we were so different.
12:37 But I'm afraid that the real reason is we really
12:40 don't want to suffer that persecution.
12:42 You know the Bible tells us in 2 Timothy 3:12 if you
12:47 want to turn there, 2 Timothy 3:12
12:51 The apostle Paul tells this young apprentice, "yes,
12:57 "and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus
13:02 "will suffer persecution. "
13:05 You suffer persecution when you live godly.
13:07 One of the challenges with these Judaizing teachers
13:10 was they really didn't want to live godly.
13:13 They wanted a religion where they had a few outward
13:16 things they could subscribe to that would help them
13:20 to be able to avoid totally living godly.
13:24 I'm looking at our clock and saying I want to really
13:30 dig into this, but we need to take a break.
13:32 So we are great go ahead and do that and when we
13:34 come back we are really going to dig into this idea
13:38 of avoiding this persecution for the cross of Christ.
13:41 How we as Christians need to be faithful to Christ
13:45 no matter what, stay tuned!


Revised 2014-12-17