Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Just Where Do You Think You’re Going?

When Paul wrote to Galatia he immediately addressed a problem many still have today: walking away. He said in Galatians 1:6, “I marvel that you are turning away so soon from Him who called you in the grace of Christ, to another gospel.” During this time, Judaizers had come into the church at Galatia to persuade the members to trade in their new-found Christian liberty for the old bondage of the law. It seems as though they were having success, appealing to those who were still babes in Christ to turn back to the familiar comforts of the law.
In essence, Paul asked the Galatians, “Just where do you think you’re going? Why are you going back to an imperfect way?” Paul reminded them that salvation was founded through the grace of God in Christ Jesus. God had constructed a plan through his love and grace to redeem mankind, because the law was insufficient, temporary, and only a tool to bring Israel and the rest of the world to the time of the saving Messiah (3:24,25). Justification came through faith and obedience to the plan God worked through Christ. The new and living way was to be the only way!
Sometimes don’t we act just like the Galatians? Isn’t it true that although called by the gospel we often end up obeying laws of imperfection that once left us condemned? How often do we commit sins that we’ve committed once before? How often are we persuaded to live according to worldly concepts that we should have once and for all abandoned for Him?
How sad God must be when one who has obeyed the truth falls back into sin and fails to reestablish a relationship with Him. Such are like the thorny soil (Matt. 13:22), who let cares and deceitfulness choke out the message of salvation. Also as the rocky soil (Matt. 13:20,21), some may receive the word with joy, but endure only for a while. When tribulation and persecution arise they leave the faith, because the word had not taken root in their hearts.
Why do we seek for help in the wrong places (Matt. 6:33)? What do we think we’ll solve if we leave the Lord? During Christ’s ministry some of His disciples went away and walked with Him no more (John 6:66). Jesus then asked the twelve if they wanted to leave as well. Peter said correctly, “To whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life” (v. 68).
If we are going to live eternally with our God we have to grow ever nearer to Him. The only way is in Jesus (John 14:6). God has left us the means to stay in that way (John 14:4). If you choose another path, just where do you think you’re going?

1 comment: