Day 2

No Other Gospel

from the Galatians reading plan

Galatians 1:6-10, Isaiah 52:1-10, 2 Corinthians 11:1-4, 2 Corinthians 11:12-15

BY Melanie Rainer

My daughter is in a truly delightful developmental stage that is characterized primarily by make-believe. She spins magical tales and recites them with flourish, keeping us entertained and amazed at her creativity and sense of humor. Some of her stories are easy to identify as play—I know empirically that, no matter how awesome it sounds, a seagull did, in fact, not land on her head and take a seashell that she had balanced there.

But some of her stories are harder to sift out truth from make-believe. Did she really swim without a life jacket at camp? Despite all the assurances that she would always have a Personal Flotation Device, it’s possible the counselor forgot. Maybe? Sussing out fact from fiction in these scenarios is hard, a delicate balance of demanding honesty and encouraging her storytelling, creativity, and play.

When fiction is easy to identity, we delight in the power of story. When the line between truth and embellishment blurs, it is easy to believe first and question later. This is exactly Paul’s point in today’s part of the letter to Galatians. “I am amazed,” he writes, “that you are so quickly turning away from him who called you by the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel—not that there is another gospel” (Galatians 1:6–7). Paul pulls no punches, telling them, “If anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to what you received, a curse be on him!” (v.9).

Furthermore, in 2 Corinthians, Paul admonishes, “For if a person comes and preaches another Jesus… you put up with it splendidly!” (2 Corinthians 11:4). The warning is two-fold: Stay true to the one true gospel and to Christ, and do not follow or teach a false gospel.

More often than not, the false gospels I am drawn to are not patently false at first glance. They dance on the line of biblical orthodoxy, skirting around it and often adding to it. A real Christian should live this way! they say, along with a pseudo-salvific claim to living out some expectation of modern life. Today’s false gospels bend Scripture, asking it to do or be something it’s not— adding to it to say something it does not say, or twisting what it actually does say. Which is exactly what the false teachers in Galatia were doing: adding a requirement of circumcision and following other Jewish laws to become a Christian.

I actively fight against the temptation of false gospels every day by engaging in Scripture, the north star that always points us exclusively to Christ. Filtering out falsehoods and embellishments is the work of the Holy Spirit in my heart through the means of grace that is the Word of God. I am so thankful for it.

Post Comments (28)

28 thoughts on "No Other Gospel"

  1. Keila Barrientos says:

    Such a good reminder!

  2. Darlene says:

    There is something so organic about how our relationship with the Lord can be so strong in the daily abiding that Truth shines brightly for us to see, and the path is clear. A day or two of straying and that path grows dim. It’s something that cannot be explained, but is so real that once that kind of intimacy with Him is found it cannot be denied. There is no longer any room for doubt. I’m so grateful that He welcomes me back after my wanderings!

  3. Nicole Lattery says:

    Thank God for His grace. May He give me the power to discern false gospels and may I stay with Him and His truth.

  4. Sara Lindauer says:

    I’m a high school youth leader and the youth pastor was teaching yesterday about Adam and Eve and the serpent. He told them about how the things others say we need to watch closely as they can sink in to our minds and breed lies. I love the reminder from Galatians today. May we always turn back to the source of truth!

  5. Shannon Fry says:

    This study is so well timed for me. I work at a Christian camp that is going through a massive transition. A coworker and I were just talking today about how we feel like we are all working so hard to keep everything going, trying every angle we can think of!! And all of a suddenly I realized how foolish it is to think we are going to keep this ministry, given to us by the grace of God, going through our own hard work and cleverness! He is the one who started the work. He is the one who will sustain it. I told her we needed to read Galatians together and I think she is going to join us ❤️ Thank you SRT team for making this available.

  6. Kelly Chataine says:

    Thanks Angie for sharing the hymn.
    This is my story, this is my song, praising my Savior, all the day long.
    This is our story, this is our song, praising our Savior, all the day long.

    We are walking together with our God!

  7. Ashley White says:

    Such a great reminder to stay in the world everyday.

  8. Lesley says:

    I think we sometimes undersell the Gospel. Society preaches acceptance above all else, but God calls us to transformation. We can be tempted to settle for how things are, but God calls us to something greater.
    It’s tough because people don’t always like it but it is the real good news.

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