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The Judaizers: Know Your Heretics

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  • The Judaizers: Know Your Heretics

    The Judaizers: Know Your Heretics

    Welcome to RealFaith, a place for Jesus-centered teaching, devotions, and other resources from the ministry of Pastor Mark Driscoll.

    The Rise of the Judaizers

    A problem arose in the early church when the apostles took the gospel of Jesus to Jews, Samaritans, and Gentiles. When Gentiles responded to the gospel, a conflict arose that threatened to divide the church. A group called the Judaizers opposed Paul and Barnabas at the Council of Jerusalem (AD 50) in Acts 15. They were uncertain that the benefits of the covenant people of God were to be extended to the Gentiles, thus doubting their conversion by the gospel. Paul's response assures them that the Gentiles had indeed been made partakers in the blessings of the covenant, namely, the Holy Spirit: "And God, who knows the heart, bore witness to them, by giving them the Holy Spirit just as he did to us, and he made no distinction between us and them, having cleansed their hearts by faith" (Acts 15:8-9).

    The Judaizers' View of Salvation

    The Judaizers were teaching that God still required everyone to observe certain rituals and statutes in order to be accepted by him as Father. Paul, in recounting his confrontation of Peter before the Judaizers, gives us an insight into the teaching of this group (Gal. 2:14).
    Apparently, the Judaizers were attempting to force Gentile Christians to live under the regulations of the Mosaic Law. They are also called the "circumcision party" (Gal. 2:12), because one of the specific elements of the Law that the Judaizers were forcing the Gentile Christians to live by was the practice of circumcision.
    Peter had withdrawn himself from eating with Gentile Christians, fearing the opposition that would come from the Judaizers who would never do such a thing out of fear of acidentally eating unclean food. However, Paul said Peter's conduct was "not in step with the truth of the gospel" (Gal. 2:14)


    The Orthodox Response

    Paul's response is given in Galatians 2:16: "We know that a person is not justified by works of the law but through faith in Jesus Christ, so we also have believed in Christ Jesus, in order to be justified by faith in Christ and not by works of the law, because by works of the law no one will be justified."

    Paul's other response is found in Galatians 5:12:
    "I wish those who unsettle you would emasculate themselves!" He suggests self-castration for those who require circumcision for others. Paul made his point clearly. According to Paul and the response drafted at the Council of Jerusalem, the Gentiles were not obligated to follow the restrictions of the Law. They were free in Christ, who had fulfilled the demands of the Law.
    Paul exhorted the Gentiles to abstain from practices associated with pagan idol worship, not to earn their salvation, but as a response to the life-changing message of the gospel and in gratitude for God's gift of salvation.

    Why Does All This Matter?

    While the heresy of the Judaizers was put to rest by the Apostle Paul, the idea behind their erroneous belief still permeates the church today.
    The issues are no longer circumcision or ceremonial uncleanness, but the question of how the law relates to salvation—or how works relate to righteousness—is still something that many Christians remain confused about today.

    Paul's exhortation to the Judaizers remains as important as ever.

    It is not by works that we are saved, but solely by the grace of Christ. In fact, to add anything to the work of Christ for salvation actually negates God's grace.

    Paul says, "I do not nullify the grace of God, for if justification were through the law, then Christ died for no purpose" (Gal. 2:21).
    THE disguise comes before THE deception
    What would happen if we hired Agatha Christie character to investigate the CRIMES of the O.T Yahweh?
    THE TRUTH comes to His people from Jesus - it is revealed knowledge
    - Just as His Father revealed THE TRUTH TO HIM daily in prayer
    - FAITH COMES from hearing not reading.[the bible is corrupted]
    This revealed daily Knowledge 2 the Ekklesia changes us into HIS WORKMANSHIP here - there is NO other way~~

  • #2
    I know you find it heretical, but I do think Jesus was jewish. He lived at home for 30 years, believed his mother was a virgin and thought his father was god. Thats a joke I once heard. But when someone says what would jesus do, i dont think eating himself is a logical answer. God didnt mind people following the mosaic law at one point in time, why would he now if they love god? I mean, lets say a christian went to a passover meal, whats the problem, is that one act enough to send them to hell? Why isnt loving god enough? You seem to say its all you need, but you cant do jewish things if you do. What if I went to church on monday instead of sunday? Why would god care as long as i did it for god? See, this is the problem i have with religion, it makes god seem so petty.