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July 21, 2021 8:00 am
Today on Fellowship in the Word pastor Bill Gebhardt challenges you to become a fully functioning follower of Jesus Christ. There's another reason I believe that many of you in your past, and maybe some of you leaving your present have been told by religious coral snakes are harmless and poisonous mushrooms will not hurt their wrong relations unit on joining us today on this additional Fellowship in the Word pastor Bill Gebhardt Fellowship in the Words the radio ministry of Fellowship Bible church located in Metairie, Louisiana Pastor Bill Gebhardt now is once again he shows us how God's word meets our world this morning to use your imagination. I want you to imagine that you are on a backpacking trip the great Smoky Mountains National Park, and after about a day or so you get completely disconnected from your group and you find yourself completely alone in the Smoky Mountains and so you walk and not really sure what direction you're going. And eventually night comes, so you decide that there's nothing I can do in the dark so you picture tent for your backpack and you get your sleeping bag out and you crawl inside and then right in the middle of the night, say 3 o'clock in the morning you feel something is moving inside of your sleeping bag on your stomach and chest and you realize that it's probably a snake so you unzip the top of your bag and take a look at you really can't see anything so you get your flashlight and you look in Shernoff. You're right, that's a snake and is kind of colorful. It has wide bands of black and red with narrowband of yellow.
Now if you know anything at all about snakes and for their sake will save you kind of do. There's two possibilities here. It could be a king snake and a king snake is just a constrictor and he just went in there for the warmth of the night is really no threat to you at all.
It could be a coral snake and a coral snake is highly poisonous and if it bites you alone in the mountains by yourself. You're likely to die. Now I've even used this illustration in the past and there is a little wine that could help you in a situation like this. The rhyme goes that red on black. That is of the red touches the black deadly venom lack red on yellow kill a fellow cape so if you know that you would probably want to be thinking about that right about that. There's just a real little difference between a king snake and coral snake method bike and then a little difference is a big difference. Now I know most of you so I know the kind of snake it's in your bag doesn't matter all you going to go out of that bag like Harry Houdini. Now it is going to climb out of that bag go running into the darkness hit a few trees and just keep on running, probably to daybreak say you do that and now you're even more lost than before, but now you don't even have your tannery bag or anything so you start wondering you find a little water which you will find any food so you go for two days three days you have no food at all starving, and then you go over little going to come to a patch of mushrooms. Now you have to make a decision, do you read the motion now 5% of mushrooms are edible.
About 90% of mushrooms won't do you any good deed all and and 5% of them are fatal. So what you do now they look just kind of like mushrooms know this. I'm not sure at all because I what I looked it up online and trying to figure out how would you know the difference between a poisonous and edible mushroom and the best I could find out it had something to do with the rib structure underneath the mushroom and how the design was and how many there were. But even that left me totally in the dark. Not one expert that I found online did say this for the average person.
The best way to find out if the mushroom is poisonous is the servant of your in-laws and see what happens when you know but you don't have your in-laws is just a little thing, but it makes a really big difference. You see most of you will never have a snake in your sleeping bag and most of you will never find yourself in the middle, the Smoky Mountain starving to death, but each and every one of you have an eternal destiny each and every one of you in the endgame couldn't be more polarized heaven or hell, and when it comes down to the difference between the two tickets.
The one that takes you to heaven. And the one that takes you to help.
It might be just a very little thing, but that little thing will make an enormous difference. Open your Bibles to the book of Galatians Galatians chapter 1 Galatians chapter 1 the first epistle that the apostle Paul wrote depending on a theory of what exactly who his audience is it just it's possible that he wrote this run A.D. 45. Paul is writing to people who are called as you see on the title Galatians are not Jews, but not Greeks, but not Romans the Galatians there a unique people group. You see centuries before the time the Paul was writing a horde of barbarians went from Asia all the way across Europe when they settled in modern-day France they were called Gauls when they center settled in England and Ireland. There were called Celts they were a fierce people. The Roman Empire had enormous problems trying to deal with the militarily, but it turned out that many of them, especially those that lived in England decided that they did not like the British climate and they decided that they would migrate east again and they settled into what we call modern Turkey or Asia minor and that's where Paul the apostle Paul finds him is his first missionary journey, and at first journey.
The apostle Paul has a tremendous amount of success. Many of the Galatians, the Jesus Christ, the gospel was believed and embraced by but within 2 to 5 years something went wrong and what went wrong was there was a group of men who followed Paul.
They were called Judaizers and what they were. As they were believers in Jesus Christ were Jewish, but there was two things substantially unique about them. One is everywhere they went. They just they actually do everything they could to help you lose your confidence in me, a possible they discredited Paul and every account.
They said he wasn't really an apostle that he really was never around Jesus Christ. When Jesus Christ was alive and he really didn't have very much authority and secondly they discredited his message the gospel. They said that the Galatians that Paul taught you an improper gospel that in order to get to heaven.
What you needed to do was yes, you needed to believe in Jesus Christ, no doubt about that but you also had to embrace some aspects of Judaism circumcision keeping the law in some fashion or some way and because of that the apostle Paul finds this out, and when he does he writes this letter and am so glad he did.
I don't think there is a more important book in the Bible and the book of Galatians. It's that important.
If there is a book that you truly understand it should be the book of Galatians Merrill Tenney in the great Christian scholar writes this, Christianity might have been just one more Jewish sect and the thought of the Western world might have been entirely pagan had Galatians not been written is this Galatians embodies the germinal teaching of Christian freedom which separated Christianity from Judaism and which launched it upon a career of missionary conquest is the cornerstone of the Protestant Reformation because it's teaching of salvation by grace alone became the dominant theme of the preaching of the reformers, Martin Luther who wrote a magnificent commentary on the book of Galatians is this the epistle of Galatians is by epistle he said to it. I am as it were in wedlock.
He said Galatians is my Catherine. That was the name of Luther's wife. When Luther find Galatians he found Jesus Christ, and he found the grace of God, and he launched the Reformation. Many years later. In fact, in 1738 there was a young Englishman who was reading Luther's commentary on Galatians and a change this life forever. His name was John Wesley so you get some idea of the impact of this book it is important, it is extremely personal, it is intensely entertaining, its value cannot be overestimated to understand. Galatians is to understand the heart of Christianity to understand. Galatians is to understand the fullness and the uniqueness of the grace of God.
There's another reason I'm doing this. I believe that many of you in your past, and maybe some of you leaving your present have been told by religious authorities that coral snakes are harmless, that poisonous mushrooms will not hurt you there wrong in the book of Galatians will pointed out Paul was going to give a very powerful rebuttal. He sees it in a battle that must be one and all I want to do today. In the first nine verses is simply so the first definitive steps that Paul takes so let me read verses 1 to 5 Paul and apostle not sent from men nor through the agency of man, but through Jesus Christ and God the father who raised him from the dead and all the brethren who are with me to the churches of Galatia, grace to you and peace from God our father and the Lord Jesus Christ, who gave himself for our sins so that he might rescue us from this present evil age, according to the will of our God and father, to whom be the glory forever. Amen salutation along one for Paul, but there's a point to this and it's this nobody should have more authority to us in the apostle Paul me say that again nobody should have more authority to us than the apostle Paul. Notice he starts talking about his ministry, Paul and apostle.
Apostle Apostol us. It just means one was sent with the commission and so there's a small way apostles and large a apostles just like with disciples disciples and learner. There were lots of disciples and underwear. The disciples, but in this case, Paul says I am an apostle and notice what he says I am not sent for men. James, the Lord's brother Peter job they did not send me I am not sent for men, and then he says this, nor through the agency of man men did make me an apostle.
They did not pick me. He says, in fact, he says, but through Jesus Christ.
He says in God the father, what is he saying we see there were many people and by the way, who said in discredited.
Paul was an apostle all apostle was one way to see Christ the resurrected Christ and have apostolic authority and Paul so that's me know if you remember, if you read in the book of acts, after they realize that Judas was not a viable candidate anymore. The disciples got together his apostles that we need a 12 apostle so what they decided was let's cast lots and letter following someone they did. Matthias now is my conviction that Matthias is not an apostle and he is not the 12 apostle. I believe the apostle Paul was the 12 apostle notice he didn't come through the agency of man men casting lots.
It comes through the agency of Christ and God had in fact it's interesting when you fall over the historical tradition of all the apostles is kind of interesting to me anyway that Matthias is missing. Paul wants to make it clear that I have authority here, he says notice through Jesus Christ and God the father who raised him from the dead. Paul wants to let them know right off the bat. My authority is not to be questioned. I am a full-blown apostle and obviously this is in the word of God is inspired by the Holy Spirit's message. By the way, is extremely clear notice he says in verse three Grace to you and peace, Paul loves that grace and peace and he loves it. Always in that order. I believe in Paul's point of view, you don't have peace until you experience grace and so he says grace and peace to you, he said, from God our father and the Lord Jesus Christ and then he gives you a very sort of synopsis or a snapshot of the gospel.
He said who gave himself for our sins so that he might rescue us from this present evil age, according to the will, he says of our God and father noticed the gospel was here. Even if it's in seed form, the person Jesus Christ the son of God, the price the cross, the atoning work of Jesus Christ. The purpose deliverance from the bondage of sin. The plan, it's God the father's plan. He said it's by the will of God the father, for God so loved the world that he sent his son and then in verse five we see the goal, to whom be the glory forevermore. The goal the glory of God. Why did Jesus Christ come to this earth for the glory of God. Why did Jesus Christ live a perfect life for the glory of God. Why did he go the cross for the glory of God.
Why was he raised from the dead, for the glory of God. Why do you send a heaven for the glory of God.
Why is the message of salvation by grace, even to mankind for the glory of God. Why are you and I say because we put our trust in Jesus Christ for the glory of God. You see, why am I going to heaven for the glory of God as a policy. It's the goal nobody, nobody should have more authority to us than the apostle Paul. No one in their world and no one in our world. Not me, not denominational leaders, not your brother-in-law, not anybody should have more authority in your life when it comes to the salvation message in the grace of God than the apostle Paul was writing this under the inspiration of the Spirit of God is the second thing that he says nobody is more shocked by our spiritual night cavity and the apostle Paul was verse six. He jumps right in.
I am amazed I am amazed King James marble NIV astonished. But if you read this that great word is an interesting word by Manzo, and I actually believe the best interpretation I could come up with is bewildered. I am bewildered.
I am shocked. I am astonished why he says that you are so quickly deserting him I'm bewildered by that.
How could you dessert Jesus Christ.
How could you be doing that that were deserting as a military word. The idea of a military desertion and or something else about it when he says, deserting that verb is reflexive is not passive. It's not like I don't know what's happening. I'm just kinda drifting. It means I'm doing voluntarily. He said I am dessert. Why are you I'm astonished by this. How can you be deserting him. It's only the beginning, tell you something 46 chapters, Paul is spitting mad is that bad the whole way through because of what is at stake here.
The apostle Paul sees the problem here and he sees what's at stake. In fact, in every epistle that he writes even to the Corinthians, which are the worst local church in the New Testament by a mile. He says something nice about.
He doesn't say one nice thing to the Galatians that one because of the nature what's going on there. Paul said, I am amazed that you are so quickly deserting him who called you by the grace of Christ for a different gospel a different gospel. Paul says they're coming in here not giving you a different gospel that you might be thinking were they trying to lead him into some kind of falling pagan deities when they trying to do something you really crazy or out. No, no, no, not at all. You are the Judaizers said we believe Jesus is the Messiah. We believe Jesus is the son of God. We believe Jesus died on the cross for your sins.
We believe all that and know you need to believe that Paul is right about that, but there's a couple other little things you need to do.
Just little things but didn't believe in Jesus you will Paul call that a different gospel is a different gospel effectively giving example of it. Hold your place or just turn the chapter 5 the Galatians is sorta get a little glimpse into it. Paul writes it was for freedom that Christ set us free.
Therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to the guilt of slavery. Behold hi Paul, say to you that if you receive circumcision.
Christ will be of no benefit to you and I testify again to every man receive circumcision, that he is under obligation then to keep the whole law. You have been severed from Christ, you are seeking to be justified by the law. You are fallen from grace knows what he is saying here what were the Judaizers say will look you need to believe in Jesus everything the postage true but you also have to be circumcised.
See the covenant with Abraham is sealed through circumcision is the mark of the Abraham a covenant and if you are going to get to heaven if you want to be say people you need to be circumcised not believe in a Jesus, that's fine, but you also need to be circumcised on top of that, and Paul calls that a different gospel.
You see all they are doing to him is what's been done to so many of us they're saying it's Jesus Christ all yards Jesus Christ but limited to just have to add to it. Just a little bit just add a little bit and all that is a somebody telling you that that is a king snake in your sleeping bag, but it's not. It's a coral snake. A completely different snake and that snake can be deadly and soak in this gospel. Notice what he says he goes in verse seven, which is really not another because I understand the gospel means good news actually means. Best news is not really another good news is only one good news. There's only one best news. He said, but I'm just saying it's a different gospel.
So he says, which is not really another only. There are some who are disturbing you know I love that there are some he says who are disturbing you know when you see this is kind of an interesting word. This idea being disturbed.
It literally means to shake you like this to sorta grab you by the shoulders and neck and shake you because I know what they're doing they are disturbing you.
They are doing this to you and then he says this he says, and they want in his of the truth of it comes to distort the gospel of Christ. They want to distort the gospel of Christ. That's with her after Jesus Christ plus circumcision your saved just Jesus Christ you're lost if you know anything about rudimentary mathematics. What would cross out of the equation. Jesus Christ, you are saved, circumcision and screw the last 2000 years. The churches try to do the same thing all if you're not baptized you not say you can't be said if you want put want you not say that only people who are baptized in water saved only people who take the sacraments are saved, you need to believe in Jesus.
He is the son of God, but you got to do this if you don't do this you not say you see, you better believe in Jesus Christ, we have to show up in church, you have to give a certain amount of money have to be religious.
Gotta be a good guy got to be good lady whatever it is it's always Christ plus something Paul says that's a distortion of the gospel. A complete distortion.
It is something else is a poison mushroom course is not a king snake or an it is something else is dangerous after the radio ministry fellowship Lord, if you ever miss one of our broadcasting or maybe you dislike the method one more time. Remember the little green website called in one place.com that's one place.com and you can listen the fellowship and the word online event website you will find on today's broadcast but also many of her previous audio programs as well have Fellowship in the Word. We are thankful for those who financially support our ministry and make this broadcast possible. We ask all of our listeners to prayerfully consider how you might help his radio ministry continuous broadcast on this radio station by supporting a monthly with just a one time gift support for ministry can be sent to Fellowship in the Word. 4600 Clearview Pkwy., Metairie, LA 7006 if you would be interested in hearing today's message in its original format that is is a sermon, the pastor will deliver during a Sunday morning service at Fellowship Bible church visit our website FVC Nola.org that FVC and LA.O RG at our website you will find hundreds pastor Bill sermon you can browse through our sermon archives defined sermon series are looking you can search by title. Once you find the method you're looking for. You can listen online or if you prefer, you can download the sermon and listening room. And remember, you can do all this absolutely free of charge. Once again our website is FVC Nola.org forecaster Bill Gebhardt injuries and heart. Thank you for listening to fellowship in order