Thursday, February 15, 2018

Amazing Grace, Amazing Apostasy

The gospel of Christ is amazing. Jesus Christ came into this world to save sinners. We are saved by grace, through faith and the gift of faith that God gives us, is accounted to us for righteousness. We are forgiven and justified by faith in the sinless life, sacrificial death, and victorious resurrection of Jesus Christ.  All my sins are forgiven. I’m no longer condemned since I’m in Christ Jesus. I am free from the condemnation of God’s law, born again, and an adopted Son of God, a joint-heir with Christ Jesus. I didn’t have to do a thing in this world to earn God's love. Freely, by God’s grace, He saved me from my sins, delivered me from the just punishment of Hell, and delivered from this present evil world.

Paul was amazed by grace. But he was also amazed at the Galatians. It is rather astonishing the Galatians could know God and receive the news that God saves sinners and reconciles sinners to himself by free grace, and then thumb their nose at  this glorious gospel, turn their back on God and follow after another gospel (Galatians 1:6-7).  The Almighty God called sinners into the grace of Christ. The Lamb of God came and bled and died for them and freely gave them all things. The Eternal Son, shed his life’s blood to give them life. God imputed the righteousness of Christ to their account and then called them to this gospel, and they left and turned their back on God.

It’s amazing they had forsaken the gospel, but also amazing they had done it so quickly! Not much time has passed since the "hour they first believed” and it didn’t take too many dangers, toils, and snares to trap them in a dangerous heresy. New converts are delicious to ravening wolves. In these churches men, with prestige and experience,  had come to help these poor ignorant Galatians see the “truth” and rescue them from that intolerant Paul.  

It’s amazing they had forsaken God and his Christ, and had done it so easily! What a priceless treasure we have in Jesus. There are unsearchable riches in Christ. There are unfathomable depths to his love. Untrackable glories in his death. I truly believe we will spend eternity gazing into the glories of the gospel of Christ. And yet, how amazing one could so quickly leave Christ. How telling that wretched sinners, who beheld the Son of God through faith and have tasted of his grace, could leave and go looking for pasture away from their shepherd. How weak and frail we are, and how dependent we are on the Holy Spirit to keep us.

It’s amazing they went from Christ to another gospel. When you think of apostasy in these terms, it is a marvel that people will leave the gospel for anything else, because everything is inferior. Because grace is so amazing, it's astonishing we can be tempted to look for another way for peace with God.  

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