You were running well; who hindered you from obeying the truth?Galatians 5:7(NASB)
There are many things in the world today that are attacking Christianity. There is a secular agenda, a communist agenda, an Islamic agenda, a relativism agenda, a new-world order agenda, an alien agenda, many cultish agendas, and a satanic move towards disintegrating everything and anything to do with the God of the Bible and His only Begotten Son.
But every attack on Christianity has its roots in Satan's demonic agenda which is designed to blaspheme the God of heaven and earth, to discredit His holy Word, to belittle the Person and Work of the Lord Jesus on the Cross, to blind the eyes of the unsaved who are perishing, and to shipwreck the lives of those that have been saved by grace through faith in the Lord Jesus for the forgiveness of sins and life everlasting.
It was legalism that was such a big concern to the apostle Paul, in those early days of the fledgling church. Paul had been called to a unique ministry by Christ, Himself, and chosen to unveil many hidden mysteries to the early Church - mysteries which had been veiled from view in earlier dispensations.
Paul was the tool God used to write much of the inspired, New Testament Scriptures which have become so vital to the Body of Christ down through centuries of time... but he was opposed on all sides by legalists who challenged his apostolic authority and sought to return the early Church to Judaistic rules, rites, regulations, and dogma.
The Christians at Galatia had started their Christian life so well... by trusting in the Lord Jesus for salvation by faith. They became believers by simply trusting in Christ for their justification but once they were saved, they were soon urged by the Judaisers to continue their Christian life in their own strength, by their own effort, through their own merit, by legalistically carrying out fleshly works of the Law which sadly placed them in condemnation. They were taken back into slavery to sin, trapped in a legalistic mindset, and once again found themselves under the curse of the Law.
"You were running so well. Who prevented you from obeying the truth?" Paul lamented, "O foolish Galatians, who has bewitched you that you should not obey the truth of the gospel of grace?" Earlier in his letter, Paul had already challenged them with the question, "Did You receive the Spirit by works of the Law or by the hearing of faith?" But having begun in the Spirit... having begun by the hearing of faith, these believers were now trying to perfect themselves by the flesh. No wonder Paul questioned whether his efforts in sharing the gospel of grace with these Galatians had been in vain.
Today, there are many godly men and women who, like Paul, are seeking to share the truth of the gospel of grace in a secular, relativistic world where numerous religious rites and ungodly agendas flourish and where Satan's influence is increasingly evident. And as the attack on biblical Christianity increases in its furious ferocity, in its ever increasing circle of influence, they also at times are tempted to wonder, as did Paul, if their efforts are futile.
But God remains in control and the Lord Jesus continues to quietly and successfully build His Church, as He promised. He is doing this with a faithful few. He is using men and women who have given their lives wholly to Him - and the gates of hell will never ever prevail against the plans and purposes of God.
Let us be earnest in our search for truth... and in His strength seek to remain steadfast in our faith and true to the gospel of God. Let us pray that we do not fall into any legalistic practices or find ourselves influenced by one or other of Satan's proud, anti-God agendas. Let us run the race that is set before us, looking away from the world and looking steadfastly to Jesus - the Author and Finisher of our faith.
Let us never forget that in the same way that we were justified by faith when we first believed, we are to spend the rest of our lives being sanctified by faith in the power of the Spirit, as we abide in Christ and submit to the leading and guidance of the indwelling Holy Spirit.
Heavenly Father, thank You that Your Word stands fast forever and ever, and that no matter what evil agendas may be used by the enemy to discredit Your name, to belittle the Person and Work of the Lord Jesus, to blind the eyes of the unsaved, and to shipwreck the lives of those that have been saved by grace through faith, we know that You are stronger and You have promised to finish the good work that You have started in all believers. Praise the Lord Jesus Christ, Whose name will one day be glorified throughout all the earth. In Jesus' name, AMEN.