Fred R. Coulter—January 23, 2010

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I think we’re finding this very interesting because the real truth is that the evangelicals have believed it for so long that they accept it as true. That’s when people really get themselves in trouble This is where evangelicals are today in their self-righteousness, yet in reading the book, Quitting Church, people are church hopping, going from church to church to church trying to find God, trying to find the truth of the Scriptures. They say that possibly as many between Catholics and Protestants, it amounts to 76-million people. They quit because the sermons are boring, not relevant, politics, pedophile priests, adulterous ministers, homosexual activity, homosexual marriage, like in the Episcopal church. All of that is because the preachers have not preached the Word of God, though they say they preach the Word of God. The truth is they use the Bible, they don’t preach the Bible. Those are two distinct different things.

But here’s what happens when people have been accepting lies for so long. You can see that people have awakened to the problems of the lies in the government today, but they haven’t awakened yet to the lies that are found in religion. So I’ve quoted this many times:

The Truth has been exchanged for lies and lies have been accepted as Truth. In a process Dresden James noted in this well-known quote: When a well-packaged web of lies has been sold gradually to the masses over generations, the Truth will seem utterly preposterous and its speaker a raving lunatic.

People will no longer be able to tolerate the Truth. They can’t. They have been so sold on the fact that Jesus only preached to the Jews, so therefore, anything that Jesus taught there, other than the few platitudes they want to accept, they don’t have to have any regard for. They also say concerning James, 1-2-Peter, 1-2-3 John, and Jude, ‘Well, those were all Jewish apostles. You can’t trust them, so we have Paul.’ Now where did Paul come from? Where did he come from? Was he Chinese? No! He was a practicer of Judaism, a Jew.

Let’s come to Philippians 3, and let’s see what Paul said of himself. We can read the history in the book of Acts, but no use going there and get all involved in that one. This will give us a bearing as to how we need to look at Galatians, and help us to understand what on earth was going on. Now this gives reinforcement to the evangelicals about not having anything to do with commandments of God, because they equate Jews, Judaism, the laws of Moses, all in the same breath as one. They fail to understand that when the Pharisees talk about the law of Moses, they’re not talking about the first five books of the Bible. They are talking about the oral traditions that Moses supposedly gave to the elders to pass on down. We saw last time how God condemns their traditions.

But notice what Paul says here. Philippians 3:1: “Finally, my brethren, rejoice in the Lord. Indeed, for me to write the same things to you is not troublesome, but for you it is safe. Beware of dogs, beware of evil workers, beware of the concision.... [That’s what he thought of the circumcision party, because circumcision was taught in the Old Testament and required for everyone who would live in Israel, who was native born, the male. If any of the strangers wanted to join themselves to the Lord, they had to be circumcised, too. But what happened was that the Pharisees said that the Gentiles must be circumcised or they can’t be saved. So that’s why Paul calls them the concision.] ...For we are the circumcision... [Not that we have circumcision in the flesh, because Paul wrote in Rom. 2 that it’s the circumcision of the heart. So this is the circumcision of Christ through repentance and baptism, and so forth.] ...who serve God in the spirit and rejoice in Christ Jesus, and do not trust in the flesh” (vs 1-3).

Now what we’re going to see as we go along here, so I want you to know where I’m going, which is this:

  1. It takes no faith to reject the commandments of God; because the carnal mind is not subject to the law of God.
  2. It takes faith to keep the commandments of God. You read the faith chapter, Heb. 11, by faith Noah, by faith Abraham, and so forth. They all obeyed. It takes faith to keep the commandments of God.

However, as we are going to see when we get into grace, not only do you need faith to keep the commandments, you need the grace of God through His Spirit to keep them in the spirit of the intent of the laws of God. Now I’ve never framed it that way before, but when you think about it, since we are required to keep it in the spirit of the law, without the Spirit of God which comes from God through His grace, therefore, in order to keep the commandments of God with true love of God in your heart, true spirit motivation for doing it, it requires the grace of God. You can’t do it any other way.

“For we are the circumcision, who serve God in the spirit and rejoice in Christ Jesus, and do not trust in the flesh; though I might also have reason to trust in the flesh. If any other thinks he has cause to trust in the flesh, I have much more; Circumcised on the eighth day; of the race of Israel, from the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews; with respect to law...” (vs 1-5). Now I want you to understand that. I want you to understand that in the Greek there is no definite article for the law. Anyone who understands Greek, they know the difference between a noun, a definite article that is called a articular noun. One without it is called anathoris. Without the definite article here, this is referring to law in general and not specifically the law of God.

But for all of those who trust in the KJV as the perfect Bible, which it’s not, it says ‘the righteousness that is in the law.’ Now, if you insert a definite article in a translation when it’s not there in the original Greek, you should put it in italics so everyone knows it’s not there or just leave it out all together. This is what has caused so much confusion among those who just stick to the writings of Paul. So,

  • you can see if you leave out Christ
  • you can see if you leave out the Spirit of God
  • you can see if you leave off baptism, as we just covered in number three, that baptism is that you are in a covenant pact with God.

He says: “...with respect to righteousness that is in law, blameless.... [What did he say in another place? ‘More zealous for the traditions of Judaism of our fathers than my contemporaries.’ We read that last time.] ...Yet the things that were gain to me, these things I have counted as loss for the sake of Christ. But then truly, I count all things to be loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord; for Whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as dung; that I may gain Christ” (vs 6-8).

So he did away with the law—is that true? Of course not! Just to keep us on the right track, hold your place here and come back to 1-Corinthians 9:21. This evangelical wrote to me and said, ‘Are you under the law?’ So we’re going to answer that today. Now in the King James, here’s a very interesting thing. If you have a KJV, you can check it out. 1-Corinthians 9:21: “To those who are without law, as without law... [notice, parenthetical statement]: ...(not being without law to God, but within law to Christ)...” Now the King James says, ‘but under the law to Christ.’ Bad translation, because the Greek here is ‘en’—meaning within. Meaning if you’re within law, what are you doing? You are keeping law—right? How did Paul teach to keep the law? In the spirit, in the newness, with God’s way. So in order to do that, that takes the grace of God. So he was within law to Christ.

Now come back here to Philippians 3:8: “...suffered the loss of all things, and count them as dung... [Greek is ‘skubalon.’] ...that I may gain Christ. And may be found in Him, not having my own righteousness, which is derived from law... [Now that sounds contradictory—doesn’t it? He’s within law to Christ, and he doesn’t want his own righteousness, which is derived from law. What’s that referring to? That’s got to be referring to the works of law of Judaism. Because we’re to serve in newness of spirit—is that not correct? Yes, indeed!] ...but that righteousness which is by the faith of Christ—the righteousness of God that is based on faith” (vs 8-9). Now there are two meanings to the righteousness of faith, which is this:

  1. Righteousness, meaning that you are keeping the commandments of God in the Spirit.

  2. Righteousness of God, meaning that you have been put in right standing with God through justification.

Now this will all become clear a little bit later on. “...the righteousness of God that is based on faith; That I may know Him, and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death; if by any means I may attain unto the resurrection of the dead; not as thought I have already received, or have already been perfected... [And that’s whole goal isn’t it? ‘Become perfect as your Father in heaven is perfect.’

  • that’s a process
  • that takes time
  • that takes grace
  • that takes effort
  • that takes work

So this is what he’s saying.] ...but I am striving, so that I may also lay hold on that for which I also was laid hold of by Christ Jesus” (vs 9-12).

So then he shows that he presses forward. Verse 13: “Brethren, I do not count myself as having attained; but this one thing I do... [This is very interesting. This is how we keep our perspective and keep from getting drug back into problems and difficulties.] ...forgetting the things that are behind, and reaching forth to the things that are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” (vs 13-14).

Whenever we do something and it’s within the will of God, within the law of God, with God’s blessing, in addition with God’s grace, and all of that together, we’re not to be lifted up and say, ‘Oh, we did this. Oh, we did that. Oh, I keep the Sabbath every week and how great I am. I keep the Holy Days, and I’m better than you,’ and all of this sort of thing. That all comes from God, and it has to be by grace.

Now we’ll also do some study on grace. So let’s come to Galatians 2 where we left off last time. Galatians 2 in the King James is almost impossible to understand, because of the same problem of the lack of definite article in the Greek, which we’ll see and I’ll point it out as we go along, which was added by the translators of the King James. This tells us there’s no difference in the Gospel that God gave to those who were to go to the Jews than the one He had going to the Gentiles.

Galatians 2:1: “Then after fourteen years I again went up to Jerusalem with Barnabas, taking Titus with me also. And I went up according to revelation, and laid before them the Gospel that I preach among the Gentiles, but privately to those of repute, lest by any means I should be running, or had run in vain. (But indeed, Titus, who was with me, being a Greek, was not compelled to be circumcised.)” (vs 1-3). What was the key thing in making that decision?

In the book of Jeremiah it talks about circumcise your hearts, but let’s come back here to the book of Deuteronomy and we will see that the circumcision of heart was also described in the book of the Law long before anything was thought about the Gentiles being brought into the Church.

Let’s come back here to Deuteronomy 10:12. What we’re going to see is actually New Testament teachings, because it’s the Word of God. Whenever you read something like this, put your name there. ‘What does God require of me?’ Deuteronomy 10:12: “And now, Israel, what does the LORD your God require of you, but to fear the LORD your God, to walk in all His ways, and to love Him, and to serve the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul... [Now how is that any different than New Testament doctrine? None!] keep the commandments of the LORD, and His statutes which I command you today for your good? Behold, the heaven and the heaven of heavens belong to the LORD your God, the earth also, with all that is in it. Only the LORD had a delight in your fathers to love them, and He chose their seed after them, you above all people, as it is today.... [Do we not have a calling from God, come out of the world, above all people in the world? Yes! So there’s spiritual application here.] ...Therefore, circumcise the foreskin of your heart, and be no longer stiff-necked” (vs 15-16). So there’s the circumcision of the heart.

What did Paul say of the Jew who was not circumcised in the heart? We’ll read it here in just a minute, so we can understand the circumcision problem. We also have a series in Galatians called The Circumcision Wars. So if you haven’t gone through that by all means get it and go through it. Verse 17: “For the LORD your God is God of gods, and Lord of lords, a great God, the mighty and awesome God Who does not respect persons nor take a bribe.... [Don’t we have the same thing in the New Testament? ‘God is no respecter of persons’? Yes!] ...He executes justice for the fatherless and widow, and loves the stranger in giving him food and clothing. Therefore love the stranger, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt. You shall fear the LORD your God.... [Are we not to fear God? Yes! Heb. 10, ‘come before God with fear.’] ...You shall serve Him, and you shall hold fast to Him, and swear by His name. He is your praise, and He is your God, Who has done for you these great and awesome things, which your eyes have seen. Your fathers went down into Egypt with seventy persons. And now the LORD your God has made you as the stars of the heavens for multitude’” (vs 17-22).

Now let’s look how we apply this in the New Testament. Let’s come to Romans 2 and then we will get back to Galatians here in just a minute. Let’s see what Paul said about circumcision of the flesh vs circumcision of the heart. The circumcision of the heart is accomplished by repentance, baptism, receiving the Holy Spirit.

Romans 2:25: “For on the one hand, circumcision profits if you are observing the law; on the other hand, if you are a transgressor of the law, your circumcision has become uncircumcision. Therefore, if the uncircumcised is keeping the requirements of the law, shall not his uncircumcision be reckoned for circumcision? And shall not the uncircumcised, who by nature is fulfilling the law... [There it is, fulfilling the law. That means keeping the law of God.] ...judge you, who, with the letter and circumcision are a transgressor of the law? For he is not a Jew who is one outwardly, neither is that circumcision which is external in the flesh; rather, he is a Jew who is one inwardly, and circumcision is of the heart, in the spirit and not in the letter; whose praise is not from men but from God” (vs 25-29).

Now we’ll cover Col. 2 here in a little bit concerning circumcision of the heart, how that takes place, and so forth, but under the Old Covenant only the males were circumcised and the women participated in the circumcision in marriage. In the New Testament all, male and female, have to be circumcised in heart and mind. That’s called conversion. So God is interested in conversion. We also have the example of Abraham. Abraham was converted for how long before God gave circumcision to him? Was 25-years. That’s why you have Rom. 4, that he’s the father of those who are circumcised, those who are not circumcised, and that we are to walk in the footsteps of Abraham our forefather.

So here comes the showdown, because this was with the Pharisees, and this had to do with the Code of Jewish Law or Jewish traditions. We’ll see that. It has nothing to do with the law of God. That’s what’s important to realize. Just as we saw last time with Cornelius in Acts 10, they received the Holy Spirit without being circumcised, and God gave the Holy Spirit to them before they were baptized in order to convince Peter and the other Jews that, yes, God was going to do it exactly the same way that He did with them. So a lot of people look at that and say, ‘Well, therefore, you don’t need to be baptized anymore.’ No, that was a special one-time event. We’ll examine some things in the book of Acts a little later on to see what it talks about baptism, and so forth.

Galatians 2:4: “Now this meeting was private because of false brethren brought in secretly, who came in by stealth to spy out our freedom which we have in Christ Jesus... [not having to be circumcised] order that they might bring us into bondage.”

  1. the commandments of God are never bondage
  2. bondage refers to Judaism

That’s why he starts out in the first chapter. He says that he was in Judaism and advancing in it. “To whom we did not yield in subjection, not even for one hour, so that the Truth of the Gospel might continue with you. But the Gospel that I preach did not come from those reputed to be something....” (vs 5-6).

Question: the Gospel that the original apostles were taught came directly from Jesus Christ—didn’t it? Yes! They were with Him three and a half years. He taught them. The Gospel that Paul got came directly from Jesus Christ. He taught him the same thing. That’s when God began to reveal that the Gentiles do not have to be circumcised, but they can keep everything else of the laws and commandments of God in the spirit as God intended, and you get rid of Judaism. Now if you’ve never heard the series, Judaism vs Scripturalism, we have it on our website, about 29 or 30 hour-and-a-half sermons. We go all through the book of Matthew to show that the apostles and Jesus are not an extension of Judaism, but a repudiation of Judaism. Big difference, because most everyone says, ‘Well, it’s just an extension of Judaism,’ because they consider keeping the commandments of God part of Judaism. No, it’s not.

“...(Whatever they were does not make any difference to me; God does not accept the person of a man.) For those who are of repute conferred nothing upon me. But on the contrary, after seeing that I have been entrusted with the Gospel of the uncircumcision, exactly as Peter had been entrusted with the Gospel of the circumcision... [Is it the same Gospel? Have to be, yes!] ...(For He Who wrought in Peter for the apostleship of the circumcision wrought in me also toward the Gentiles;) And after recognizing the grace that was given to me, James and Cephas and John—those reputed to be pillars—gave to me and Barnabas the right hands of fellowship, affirming that we should go to the Gentiles, and they to the circumcision. Their only request was that we remember the poor, which very thing I was also diligent to do” (vs 6-10).

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Now I know that this is a little tedious. I understand that for some it’s hard to follow. So I’ll try and do the best I can to make it understandable as I can. But one thing you’re going to learn: If you ever come across evangelicals, this is what they’re going to hit you with the first shot out of the conversation. So if you don’t know it, you won’t have an answer for them.

So the keys are right here in the rest of Galatians 2. What we are going to see is that in Jerusalem there was a circumcision party, and those not only believed in circumcising the Gentiles, but they also practiced the traditions of Judaism. They were not weaned away from it. They were not taught properly, and they came down here with the authority of James, the brother of John. But that was misplaced authority because James did not give them that authority to come down there and do this. But nevertheless, here’s what happened, and I want you to see that this has nothing to do with commandment-keeping from the laws and commandments of God.

Let’s read it. Let’s understand. Galatians 2:11: “But when Peter came to Antioch, I withstood him to his face because he was to be condemned; for before certain ones came from James, he was eating with the Gentiles.... [because God used him to go to Cornelius. Did he not stay there in Cornelius’ house and ate with them and slept in a bedroom there in their house, and everything? Yes, he did! So they’re in Antioch where the most number of Gentiles were at that time, Peter was freely mingling among them, eating with them.] (So then here comes the curveball): ...However, when they came, he drew back and separated himself from the Gentiles, being afraid of those of the circumcision party” (vs 11-12)—because Peter was political. That was a lifelong problem he had to overcome.

Notice what happens, because if Peter does this, it’s going to affect others. “And the rest of the Jews joined him in this hypocritical act, insomuch that even Barnabas was carried away with their hypocrisy.... [Barnabas was a Levite. There is no law in the Bible, Old Testament, that if you are a Jew or an Israelite you have to eat separately from Gentiles. As a matter of fact, the Bible says, ‘You shall have one law for you and the stranger.’ So this had nothing to do with the laws of God. Let’s go on. We’ll see it very clearly here.] ...But when I saw that they did not walk uprightly according to the truth of the Gospel, I said to Peter in the presence of them all... [Now this must have really been a dressing down.] ...‘If you, being a Jew, are living like the Gentiles... [That is, mingling with anybody who is there, eating with anybody who is there.] ...and not according to Judaism... [That is the correct translation. So what they were doing was getting carried away with the traditional law of Judaism not to eat with Gentiles.] ...why do you compel the Gentiles to Judaize?” (vs 13-14).

If you separated yourself from them and made them eat separate, you are compelling the Jews also to Judaize with your act of Judaizing. So the evangelicals equate Judaizing with commandment-keeping, rather than understand Jesus rejected all the traditions of the Jews—did He not? (Mark 7) Yes! What would happen with that? Then you come back to the same thing that you have in Orthodox Judaism today—all their dos, all their don’ts, the prayer shawls, the tassels, all of those things come with it; then the washing of cups and pots and different things like that.

Verse 15: “We who are Jews by nature—and not sinners of the Gentiles—Knowing that a man is not justified by works of law...” (vs 15-16). Very important to understand! Not the work of the law, as it’s translated in the King James. Works of law have to do with what? What were they doing? Judaizing, keeping the traditions of Judaism. That does not justify you. Now you take it one step further, which is also true: no law, not any law justifies you to God. Even Sabbath-keeping doesn’t justify you to God. We don’t keep the Sabbath because we’re seeking justification by law. We keep the Sabbath because God says, ‘Remember the Sabbath to keep it Holy.’

So this is where the problem of understanding this doctrine comes into play. If you don’t understand it’s Judaism, and not the laws of God, you can’t understand what’s really going on here. And the King James Version leaves you in a complete mystery, because it’s so wrongly translated.

Let’s ask: What is justification, first? Let’s read it here, “…but through the faith of Jesus Christ” (v 16). What is justification? Justification means to be put into right standing with God through His forgiveness of your sins, by faith in the sacrifice and acceptance of Jesus Christ and His shed blood, to blot out your sins. And when they’re blotted out, you are put in right standing with God—you are justified. That justification is also called righteousness. Because when you are justified, you are standing before God righteous. That doesn’t mean you have no requirement to not keep the commandments of God.

I hope I can made this as simple as possible. Romans 3:19: “Now then, we know that whatever the law says, it speaks to those who are under the law.... [Everyone is under the law. Why?] that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God.”

How is God going to judge everyone any other way but by His law? It’s the same way with you in the society. If you break a law in the society, you’re judged by the law that’s here—is that not correct? And when you finally make it right by paying a fine or going to jail, or whatever it may be, then you are justified to the society because you have paid your debt. Now notice how it shifts gear, because we are all judged by the law, because we all sin. That means we are all under the law of God.

Now let’s read v 20, because this becomes important: “Therefore, by works of law there shall no flesh be justified before Him... [Now unfortunately the King James slaughters this verse. It says, ‘Therefore, by the works of the law.’ Everybody reads that and they say, ‘Oh, this must mean God’s law.’ There are no definite articles before works or law in the Greek.Works of law are the works of Judaism. That’s what it is, as well as no work of any law can justify you before God.] (Here’s why): ...for through the law is the knowledge of sin.”

The law itself cannot compel you to do anything—can it? You have to choose to do it—right? But God will judge you on what you choose, whether to obey or disobey. And everyone has sinned, so in order to be put in right standing with God, you must be justified but here is the justification that God has provided, not by works of law.

Verse 21: “But now, the righteousness of God... [which means the righteousness through justification] ...that is separate from law has been revealed, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets.” And the first time you read that in the King James, it blows your mind because you can’t understand it. Because the first thing you do is ask yourself, ‘Well, why then am I keeping the law and commandments of God?’ You keep them so you won’t sin—right? Yes!

Come over here to Romans 6:1. He’s talking about the fact that you have been justified. “What then shall we say? Shall we continue in sin, so that grace may abound? MAY IT NEVER BE! We who died to sin... [through baptism] shall we live any longer therein?” (vs 1-2). So if you have sinned, you need to be justified. That’s why even in the model prayer in Matt. 6, we are to pray, ‘Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us.’—because we still sin in the mind. We might not sin outwardly overtly, but God wants the perfection in the mind and in the heart. In order to have those sins forgiven, you need the faith of Christ.

Now let’s see what we’re talking about here. Romans 3:21: “But now, the righteousness... [or justification] ...of God that is separate from law has been revealed, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets... [In other words, it was foretold that this was coming.] ...Even the righteousness... [Now this kind of righteousness is justification. So to help you understand it even more, as you will see as we go along, it’s perfectly all right to substitute the word justification.] ...Even the justification of God that is through the faith of Jesus Christ, toward all and upon all those who believe; for there is no difference” (vs 21-22). Same Gospel!

“For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; but are being justified freely... [This righteousness here is not talking about commandment-keeping. This righteousness is talking about being made righteousness because of justification and having your sins forgiven.] ...But are being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus; Whom God has openly manifested to be a propitiation through faith in His blood...” (vs 23-25). You believe Christ died, you believe that He shed His blood.It is an act of faith!

Catholics have justification by works of law. When they sin, they go to the priest and confess as much as they need to so that they can get the fewest amounts of our fathers, hail Marys, and so forth. But the priest says, ‘Your sins are forgiven, but you go do two hundred hail Marys and 200 our fathers.’

“...through faith in His blood, in order to demonstrate His justification... [Because that’s the righteousness it’s talking.] respect to the remission of sins that are past” (v 25). Now I know this is getting a little technical, but bear with me and just please listen. The Catholics let you buy indulgences to have forgiveness in advance of any sins that you may do, whether accidental or deliberate. However, there is no such thing as sin in your life tomorrow, because it hasn’t happened yet. How can you sin tomorrow when you’re here today. Can’t happen!

Now if tomorrow comes and you sin, as soon as you sin it becomes a past sin in a moment of time—doesn’t it? It’s already done. So all sins are past sins regardless of the duration going back in the past. Now some people may have sins going clear back to their childhood they never repented of. That’s past sin. You may have sins that you do today, which you repent of the next time you pray to God, or maybe even right on the spot when you realize you’ve sinned. You ask God to forgive you right then—right? That’s a past sin, because you have committed it. All sins are past sins. The only way to have them forgiven is through the sacrifice and the shed blood of Jesus Christ and you believe in it.

“ order to demonstrate His righteousness, in respect to the remission of sins that are past, Through the forbearance of God; yes, to publicly declare His justification in the present time, that He might be just... [Now notice how that flows along very smoothly when you read righteousness is justification.] publicly declare His justification in the present time, that He might be just, and the one Who justified the one who is of the faith of Jesus” (vs 25-26). Do you believe in God? God has justified you. He has forgiven you.

So then he asked the question. “Therefore, where is boasting?…. [Because Judaism is full of a lot of boasting and self-exaltation.] ...It is excluded.... [You don’t boast in anything. You’ve repented to God. God has forgiven you. All the glory goes to God. That’s why He wants us to come to Him with a broken heart and a contrite spirit. No boasting. It is excluded.] ...Through what law? The law of works? By no means! Rather, it is through a law of faith” (v 27). Now what is the law of faith? That seems like a contradictory term—doesn’t it? But it’s not. It means the working of repentance and believing in the sacrifice and shed blood of Jesus Christ for the remission of your sins. That is through a law of faith.

Notice. “Consequently, we reckon that a man is justified by faith, separate from works of law.... [Because works of law are never intended to justify anybody anywhere. So now you will see the problem in Gal. 2 much more clearly.] ...Is He the God of the Jews only?.… [Well, the Jews think so. They say Gentiles should never keep the Sabbath and Holy Days.] ... Is He not also the God of the Gentiles? YES! He is also God of the Gentiles, Since it is indeed one God Who will justify the circumcision by faith, and the uncircumcision through faith.... [Justified to be put in right standing with God, to have the righteousness of God, given to you by having all your sins forgiven.] ...Are we, then, abolishing law through faith?.... [That’s what evangelicals believe. If Jesus abolished the law through faith, then there’s no law to keep, there’s no sin to be forgiven, because sin is the transgression of the law. What does Paul write?] ...Are we then, abolishing law through faith? MAY IT NEVER BE! Rather, we are establishing law” (vs 28-31).

How do you establish law? Where is the best place in the world to have the law established—in a book or in your mind and heart? Let’s notice. Come to Hebrews 10 and see how it is established. There is consistency all the way through with the teachings of Paul and the Gospel, both to the Jews and to the Gentiles. There is no difference in the Gospel. The evangelicals believe, ‘Yes, there’s a difference. You don’t even have to baptize anymore.’ And that’s one of the biggest absolute deceptions that they believe because they think they are in covenant with God and if you’re not baptized, you’re not in covenant with God.

Hebrews 10:14: “For by one offering... [of Himself.] ...He has obtained eternal perfection for those who are sanctified.... [Now let me clarify what sanctified means. Once you have been justified, forgiven your sins, and baptized, enter into covenant with God, you receive the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit sanctifies you. The goal is perfection for those who are sanctified.] ...And the Holy Spirit also bears witness to us; for after He had previously said, ‘“This is the covenant that I will establish with them after those days,” says the Lord... [Now every evangelical sit up and listen to this. You don’t believe in keeping the laws and commandments of God, you believe they’re abolished, what are you going to do with this verse]: ...“I will give My laws into their hearts, and I will inscribe them in their minds”’” (vs 14-16). That’s exactly how the brain works. It becomes inscribed with thoughts and the power of the Holy Spirit.

“‘“And their sins and lawlessness I will not remember ever again.”’ Now where remission of these is, it is no longer necessary to offer sacrifices... [animal sacrifices.] ...for sin.... [Now here’s what it does. Here’s the key important thing that grace does for us and the evangelicals do not even understand grace. I’m going to give some sermons on grace and show you what the key thing in understanding grace really, really is. We have a booklet on it. We grow in grace and knowledge. We’re going to add some knowledge to what’s in that booklet.] (However, notice, here is what grace does): ...Therefore, brethren, having confidence to enter into the true Holiest by the blood of Jesus..” (vs 17-19).

Through prayer we have direct access to God the Father Himself and He answers our prayers. He hears our prayers because He loves us. That is accomplished by grace. That’s the purpose of repentance and baptism and justification and sanctification, so that you now being chosen by God can have personal access to Him through prayer and the Holy Spirit to lead you, to guide you, and you learn of Him by studying His Word.

Verse 20: “By a new and living way, which He consecrated for us through the veil (that is, His flesh), and having a great High Priest over the house of God, let us approach God with a true heart, with full conviction of faith, our hearts having been purified from a wicked conscience, and our bodies having been washed with pure water…. [Baptism, folks—right? Yes!] …Let us hold fast without wavering to the hope that we profess, for He Who promised is faithful” (vs 20-23).

Now let’s come back to Galatians 2. Now that you understand what the righteousness and justification of God is through forgiveness of sin, now you will be able to understand Galatians 2 much more easily. Plus you have a proper translation in the Bible in its Original Order.

Galatians 2:16: “Knowing that a man is not justified by works of law... [That primarily is Judaism, because they were Judaizing.] ...but through the faith of Jesus Christ... [You believe in His sacrifice and His shed blood. He also gives you the gift of faith with the Holy Spirit.] ...we also have believed in Christ Jesus in order that we might be justified by the faith of Christ... [Because He had to live His life, die, shed His blood, be resurrected. That’s all part of the faith of Christ and He imparts that us to us.] ...and not by works of law...”

How can you compare some activity that you do versus what Christ Himself has done with the plan and blessing of God the Father to forgive your sins? That you would be so petty and you would be so carnal, Peter, that you would separate yourselves from the Gentiles whom you’ve been fellowshipping with and eating all this time and when these mucky-mucks come down from James, you get over here in a corner with all of you little Jews over here, and you think you are more righteous than anybody else and you’re sinning. How’s that for a vernacular translation? “...and not by works of law...”

Now we can just do a little add on here, which if I were there in Paul’s place, he probably said more than what’s written here. But I would say, ‘Now, Peter and all the rest of you who think you’re important, you compare your puny little works of separating over here in your self-righteousness that you are righteous and condemn the Gentiles and you are practicing what Jesus condemned and died for. Compare that with the sacrifice of Christ. Compare that with the justification of God. How can this puny little act of separation from human beings, who have the Spirit of God as well as you, make you better or more righteous?’ Never happen, never will be!

“…because by works of law shall no flesh be justified.... [Because God is the One who has to justify, not you. If you seek a work of law that you do, you’re telling God, ‘You have to justify me because I did this.’ Rather than repenting and say, ‘God forgive me.’ And that puts you right standing, or justified, with God, because He forgives and you believe in faith.] ...Now then, if we are seeking to be justified in Christ... [which we are] ...and we ourselves are found to be sinners... [Which in doing that, they were, having nothing to do with the laws of God. There was no law of God being implemented here at all. This was all Judaism.] Christ then the minister of sin?.... [That applies to any religion that requires works for you to do. Those works are sin, because you’re coming to God to say, ‘I am doing this, God, and you must forgive me.’ Whereas God says, ‘You want forgiveness of your sins? You come to Me with a broken heart and a contrite spirit and repent of your sins and I will blot them out freely. No physical work that you’re going to do.] Christ then the minister of sin? MAY IT NEVER BE! For if I build again those things that I destroyed... [What did he destroy? He forsook and destroyed all the practices of Judaism—correct? If he starts building those things again]: ...I am making myself a transgressor” (vs 16-18).

So if you keep the laws of Judaism, you’re transgressing the laws and commandments of God. And if you think you’re being justified by that, never happen! It must only be through Christ. Now notice what he says here, to continue, and give us a whole picture.

“For I through law... [The wages of sin is death.] ...died to law... [How did he die to law? By having it abolished? No, by baptism! Isn’t that part of being justified? Yes! ‘I died to law.’ What laws? The laws of Judaism which are sin.] order that I may live to God.... [Now how you going to live to God if you go to God and say, ‘God, you’ve abolished the law. I don’t have to keep anything.’ God’s not going to accept you at all.] (because here’s why, notice the covenant): ...I have been crucified with Christ... [That’s what we covered in Rom. 6 previously here.] ...yet I live.... [He’s still in the flesh.] ...Indeed, it is no longer I; but Christ lives in me...” (vs 19-20).

The very purpose that he’s living his life in the flesh is because he has the Spirit of God so that he can do the things of God, he can preach the things of God, he can write the parts of the New Testament the way God wants it to be. ‘Christ lives in me.’ That’s what it has to be. That’s how we live. We don’t live for this world. We don’t live for the things in the world. We live for Christ. And all the things in the world are secondary. That’s why we don’t have to sell our possessions, because we have given our life, through baptism and covenant, to God. That’s greater than selling everything that you have. That’s greater than anything that you can do, because God has called you and given you His Spirit.

“…For the life that I am now living in the flesh, I live by faith... [That’s what we are to do. Believe God, and you have to understand this: It takes faith to keep the commandments of God. And to keep them in the spirit it takes grace, the grace of God, the gift of God, to do it.] ...that very faith of the Son of God, Who loved me and gave Himself for me” (v 20). The sacrifice of Jesus Christ is personally imputed to every single one individually on a one-to-one basis through repentance and baptism and entering into that New Covenant. Now that’s something. You think about that.

There is nothing in this world, there is no law in this world, there is no religion in this world that can do that. It’s the action of God the Father and Jesus Christ alone between each individual and God, between you and God. When you understand that, then you understand why a hierarchy is so hated by God. Then you understand why God does not want men ruling in your lives. He wants Christ ruling in your lives. He wants the Holy Spirit of the Father to lead you. He wants to write His laws and commandments in your heart and in your mind and give you direct access through prayer and study to God the Father and Jesus Christ in heaven above—all by the grace of God. Now compare that to some puny little religion with all of its codes, and all of its dos and don’ts and all of its traditions.

It is like Paul said—‘skubalon’—dung. Now there another four-letter word in English, which I won’t use, but is very descriptive of that. “...that very faith of the Son of God, Who loved me and gave Himself for me.... [He didn’t say, for us, He said me.] ...I do not nullify the grace of God; for if justification... [It says righteousness here, but that means the righteousness through justification.] through works of law, then Christ died in vain’” (vs 20-21). And yet they all profess that they believe in Christ and what did they do? They turned around and reverted to Judaism and self righteously and probably very snippily exalted themselves over the Gentiles. It was such political pressure that even Barnabas and the other Jews got carried away with him. What a horrible thing that was.

I remember something like that, very similar to it, when we went up to visit in Salt Lake City after we had been there. We went back to visit on Pentecost. The other minister was one of these highly exalted super-ministers, you know, and you know what he did? He had his table set up on the stage and he had all the deacons and other elders up there with them. He had other deacons go down into the potluck line and pick out the very best of all the food and all the dessert, and bring it up and put it on their table to eat. They separated themselves from the rest of the brethren, thinking that they were so great. He kept saying to me, ‘Fred, come on up here.’ I just put him off and I got back at the end of the line with the brethren and just went through. Dolores was with me and we just went through and we ate with the brethren, and just ignored the exalted minister up on the stage.

Now I hope that helps you really understand the difference between Judaism and the commandments of God. The difference between keeping law, so you don’t sin, because God doesn’t want us to live in sin. We do it because we don’t want to live in sin. Because we have a relationship with God that He has established with us through grace. So why should we want to take and stuff a branch right up God’s nose by saying, ‘I’m not going to keep any of your laws. I hate Your laws. Your laws and commandments are a curse.’ God says, ‘All right, have it your way. You’re going to reap what you sow.’

We’ll continue on this. The thing of evangelicalism and their brand of Christianity is really bad!

Scriptural References:

  1. Philippians 3:1-8
  2. 1-Corinthians 9:21
  3. Philippians 3:8-14
  4. Galatians 2:1-3
  5. Deuteronomy 10:12-22
  6. Romans 2:25-29
  7. Galatians 2:4-16
  8. Romans 3:19-21
  9. Romans 6:1-2
  10. Romans 3:21-31
  11. Hebrews 10:14-23
  12. Galatians 2:16-21

Scriptures referenced, not quoted:

  • Colossians 2
  • Romans 4
  • Acts 10
  • Mark 7
  • Matthew 6

Also referenced:

Sermon Series:

  • The Circumcision Wars
  • Judaism vs Scripturalism


  • Quitting Church by Julia Duin
  • The Code of Jewish Law by Solomon Ganzfried & Hyman Goldin