Who Has Bewitched You (3)

  • In this Part 3 we will pick up where we started with Paul addressing the Galatians and their wrong believing. They fell back into religious works and performance after being saved by grace. They were influenced by the religious crowd and started to embrace legalism once again. Religion and legalism is the universal quest for self-improvement. It is nothing more than the religion of the snake who said, “Do this and you will be like God.” 

    Religion is simply shame-management. It’s a false system that operates with the best of intentions and always ends up with the worst of results. Religion will always try to control what it cannot contain. Religion uses fear and intimidation to keep the crowd dependent upon a man, a denomination, a church institution, and/or a set of by laws that tell them how they “should” live. “Don’t let anyone should on you”.

    By now, you should have picked up on the fact that religion is bad and Grace is good. Yet people are being sucked into false teachings. Some because it fits their sinful lifestyles. It gives them some false sense of approval for the way they are living. There is no justification for what they are doing, because there’s no truth in the false gospel they are listening to.

    Well it doesn’t meet with God’s approval. They are getting their approval from man, not God, but they like it, because they think it makes what they are doing okay. Others are being sucked in because they are not studying scripture. Those that are preaching/teaching this false doctrine have a rude awakening coming to them.

    2 Corinthians 11:12-15.

    12 But what I do, that I will do, that I may cut off occasion from them which desire occasion; that wherein they glory, they may be found even as we. 13 For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. 

    Too many people get the “rock star” impression of Mega church ministers or televangelists. Oh they sound good, and they look good, so why not just take what they say at face value? Because some are false apostles and prophets. They are not speaking the truth of scripture fully.

    14 And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.

    Paul tells us not to be amazed by this, because even Satan transforms himself into an angel of light.

    15 Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.

    You notice it says “as the ministers of righteousness”. That means they are not, but are appearing as if they were ministers of righteousness. Check out their fate. We are supposed to be prepared to avoid these false teachings.

    Ephesians 4:11-14.

    11 You see, it says – And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; 12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:

    Here’s part of the problem. The ones teaching falsely, were not called. This scripture says “He gave”, not they chose. Some are in the ministry as a profession or vocation, but not as a calling. The job of those which are called, is to preach truth. Now I’ll give grace in this area in that there are some who have not yet received the full revelation of the truth of God’s great grace and love. So, for them, out of ignorance, they teach and preach only what they know. However, as the revelation of the truth becomes real in their lives, they must repent of their wrong teachings and step into the truth.

    13 Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: 14 That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;

    I like the way this reads in the New Living Translation.

    13 This will continue until we all come to such unity in our faith and knowledge of God’s Son that we will be mature in the Lord, measuring up to the full and complete standard of Christ. 14 Then we will no longer be immature like children. We won’t be tossed and blown about by every wind of new teaching. We will not be influenced when people try to trick us with lies so clever they sound like the truth.

    No longer immature and influenced by every wind of new teaching. Paul says these false teachings are lies so clever they sound like the truth. Is this hitting home to anyone? Remember in a previous part of this teaching I said Paul called them lies. Well here’s the scripture.

    What Paul says in the next couple verses of Ephesians 4 is where we are at with our compassion to release the Kingdom of the grace of God.

    15 Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of his body, the church. 16 He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love.

    In Galatians 3:1 Paul called them Foolish Galatians. People today are no different than the Galatians that Paul was speaking to. They feel the Holy Ghost convict them that they are righteous. They walk the aisle. They hit the altar. They receive Christ. Then they try to please God by going back to their old ways. Not necessarily old sinful ways, but old “works” ways.

    Gal 3:2-3.

    This only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith? Are ye so foolish? Having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?

    See, Paul was saying you’re good works or filthy rags righteousness didn’t get you saved. Why do you think you can be perfected with these things. Paul warned the Ephesians. He told them to be diligent. He told them to be on guard. He told them to be wise. Here are some words from Ephesians 5:15 that ought to be received and embraced. I'll leave these with you and stop at this point, but don't miss the final part 4 of this teaching. “See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise,” Grace and Peace.