Friday, 20 May 2016
This persuasion does not come from Him who calls you. Galatians 5:8
“This persuasion” is referring to the words of the previous verse which noted that the Galatians had been hindered from obeying the truth. They were walking on the proper path and had been knocked off that path and onto a wayward one.
Paul notes that this was because they were persuaded to do so. In this, he uses a play on words. In the previous verse, he used the word peithó which is translated as “obeying.” It means “persuade” or “urge.” The Judaizers had actively persuaded the Galatians to leave the proper path.
In this verse, he uses the word peismoné. It comes from peithó and means “persuasion” or “conviction,” but it is used only of self-produced persuasion. Rather than relying on “Him who calls you,” they trusted the voice inside as a response to the aberrant teachings of the Judaizers. They had willingly rejected the leading of the Spirit in order to follow the lies of the devil.
The words, “from Him who calls you” are in the present tense. This is contrasted to that used in Galatians 1:6 which said, “I marvel that you are turning away so soon from Him who called you in the grace of Christ, to a different gospel.” They had been called by the Spirit of God and had responded to His calling. Now they were responding to the false teaching of mere men.
And so we can learn a valuable lesson from this verse. In the words, “This persuasion does not come from Him who calls you,” there is a note that anyone can be called by God and respond to the simple gospel, but it does not mean that they will continue down the proper path after that day. Instead, they need to listen to the Spirit. As the Bible is written, it is the words of Scripture which call out to us. As the Bible says that the law is fulfilled in Christ, then the law is done.
The Holy Spirit will never call one to be obedient to a law which is annulled. He will only call one to cling to the grace of Christ alone and any precept which follows after Christ’s finished work. The Spirit is not confused, but anyone who observes any precept of the law fulfilled by Christ is. They have willingly deluded themselves and have turned from the truth.
Life application: Don’t be confused. Hold to the grace of Christ alone for your salvation and for your continued walk towards your heavenly home.
Lord God, even in this modern world, we are continuously finding new life forms that show us beauty, wisdom, and wonder. We peer into the vastness of the cosmos and find new stars that are ten thousand times brighter than anything before imagined. We discover new types of energy that were never before thought of. All of this came from Your infinite intelligence. Here we are, the work of Your hands searching out Your majesty. And this will continue unabated for the ages of ages. How great You are, O God. We marvel at Your glory. Amen.