A Different Gospel
Lexham English Bible
6 I am astonished that you are turning away so quickly from the one who called you by the grace of Christ to a different gospel, 7 not that there is a different gospel, except there are some who are disturbing you and wanting to distort the gospel of Christ.
What would cause Paul to be astonished at those in Galatia?
We learn that some in the church began to be deceived. He tells them in the being of this passage that the one who called you by the grace of God and now you have fallen into a different belief about the one who called. Perhaps they began to believe in a different Jesus than the one they were first taught about. Some within the church and those outside the church began to take some of Jesus' teaching and changed it to fit what they believe. We often refer to this today as heresy.
This shouldn't be a surprise to us even today. Though for Paul it was a shock because he had been in contact with them since his first visit and kept in contact with them as they began to grow. The thing to remember is we like those in Galatia are able to become deceived if we do not get rooted in the soil Christ spoke about when He gave us the parable of the sower.
Something to keep in mind is all four groups can very well be in the church.
There were four places where the seeds fell. The path who are people that hear but the evil one snatches away all the understand of the Word. There is also rocky ground and these people hear it yet when hard times come lose their joy. There is also those who have the seed among the thorns, the sad reality for these people is they are consumed with the world and all it has to offer. Finally there are those who have the seed planted in good soil and the result is they hear the word, they understand the word and they bare fruit.
Why do you suppose people can be easily fooled and deceived? Are some passages of scriptures just to hard to follow? There began to have outside influence come into the church. Teachings which do not line up with what God said.
8 But even if we or an angel from heaven should proclaim a gospel to you contrary to what we proclaimed to you, let him be accursed!
In the next verse he wants there to be no mistake at all what he is saying. When he says “if we” he means any of the apostles or himself. When the apostles finally left Jerusalem to take the message of Christ to the world they were the ones who knew the truth, so to make sure those in Galatia and the surrounding churches understood he included the apostles and himself. He then goes on to say that even if an angel from heaven. Now first off understand that no angel from heaven would proclaim a falsehood of Christ to anyone but because the devil, Lucifer which means angel of light, can disguise himself as a beautiful creature and yes even an angel of light, he wanted them to know not even to believe an angel.
Don't you find it at all interesting that he mentions this in his letter and yet even today we have people who are fooled in a religion and/or cult because of a so called angel who deceived the founder of that faith. For instance Mormonism began because Joseph Smith had an encounter with an angel of light who proclaimed a “new” gospel truth. Not only does Mormonism have this belief but even the Islamic faith has the very same teaching. The angel Michael came to Mohammed with a truth that was distorted, according to that religion.
You see the devil and those who work at distorting the Bible do not come to men with pitchforks and devil outfits like the world would have you believe. They come to distort and speak ever so gently that you could be fooled if you were not walking fully with Christ. A simple message like “God is love, do not judge those in the fellowship because that isn't what God wants” is now actually a half truth. You see God is love, and its written all over the Bible.
When Jesus says, “Judge not,” He is forbidding what is harsh (Isa 29:20), hurtful (Rom 12:19–21), uninformed (1 Cor 4:3–5), hasty (Prov 18:13), and hypocritical (Rom 2:1). He does not forbid all judging, for elsewhere in Scripture believers are instructed to judge (cf. 1 Cor 6:1–6). The Lord approves of both discriminatory and disciplinary judgment. Examples of discriminatory judging would be ascertaining whether a person’s teaching is true or false (Matt 7:15; 1 John 4:1), whether a person is worthy or unworthy (Matt 7:6; 10:11), whether a person is right or wrong (Acts 15:1–29; Gal 2:11–21), whether a statement is truth or error (Acts 17:11; 2 Tim 3:16–17), whether an action is right or wrong (2 Tim 3:16, 17), and whether a Christian’s liberty should or should not be exercised (1 Cor 6:12; 10:23). An example of disciplinary judgment is recorded in 1 Cor 5:12–13. Such judgment is reserved for believers, not unbelievers.
9 As we said before, and now I say again, if anyone is proclaiming a gospel to you contrary to what you have received, let him be accursed!
Now Paul proclaims that if anyone proclaims a different gospel message other than the one that they first heard DO NOT receive it, DO NOT accept it, that the one proclaiming this new gospel is cursed.
Ultimately there is something about this warning that we must understand. Warnings are not in the Bible to scare us but they are there for us to be on guard when we encounter them. Do not think that we will not encounter them. Many times Christians believe what they are told without researching. Many Christians are split when it comes to Mormonism thinking it is just another denomination. They have slowly began to embrace it as such. Mark my words here and now. The Mormon faith is NOT another denomination. The Word of God is the Only Word given to men from our heavenly father as instructions and directions. If we take the time and see what they believe about Jesus we'll see there are many differences between it and the Christian faith. For instance Jesus of Mormonism married Mary Magdalene and traveled to the Western world having children.
Now just based on this one issue we can conclude that the two are completely different.
The same is true of the Muslim faith. Today there is a movement to bring together Christianity, and Islam. Some teach that Jehovah and Allah are one in the same. DO NOT BE DECEIVED. Allah is NOT God, Jehovah is the ONLY God there is none beside Him. This belief of the merging of faiths has been label Chrislam. Folks please listen up, I don't care which high influential Christian leader says that Jehovah and Allah are one in the same. They are not and the Bible teaches that those who claim this falsehood shall be accursed.
10 For am I now making an appeal to people or to God? Or am I seeking to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a slave of Christ.
The conclusion of this passage is a declaration to the church that to please people is not what the Christian faith is about. It all comes back to God. It is God who reached down from heaven to bring us Salvation through Jesus Christ. The Church in Galatia had many problems that needed to be dealt with. Sin was evident in the form of false doctrines and teachings, many moved away from the true message of Salvation for a more accepting message self and pleasure. This is no difference from today. Preachers and teachers continue to spread lies from the pulpits, they write books and produce CD's and DVD's which contain half truths.
What makes this worse is that members within the church today live according to their wants and desires. They live there life and want to be left alone. They want to come to God's house of worship and act as if everything is fine that and there walk with God is great, however all they continue to do is fool themselves.
We must heed the letter of Paul because we all need to be listening and watching. We must do what we can to keep in line with the commands of God. To be living a holy and acceptable life following after Him. Otherwise we may hear something that is dark and so terrible. “I never knew you, depart from me you who practiced lawlessness.”