Truth as defined by Webster is: “that which is true; that which accords with fact or reality; an established or verified fact, or principle.” Truth as defined by the Bible is the Word of God (John 17:17).
Paul, in his entreaty in Galatians 4, is making the brethren aware that “now after ye have known God,” some were turning from following God, and were turning back to the world. He went on to say, “I am afraid of you, lest I have bestowed upon you labor in vain.” Paul was letting them know of his concern for those who were once close to him. Then he makes this statement in Galatians 4:16, “Am I therefore become your enemy because I tell you the truth?” Paul was simply asking them if he had made an enemy out of them by pointing out, based on the truth of God’s Word, what they were doing wrong. No longer were they following the Truth, but they were turning again to “the weak and beggarly elements.”
So many times today, we see brethren who are doing as did the Galatians, they are turning from the Truth of God, and to keep from upsetting them, or hurting their feelings, we do not tell them the truth of their condition. Brethren, we are commanded in Galatians 6:1 that if we see a brother “overtaken in a fault,” or in other words, straying from the Truth, we are to try our best to restore him. Let’s look together at some areas that we are commanded to tell the Truth.
“Am I therefore become your enemy, because I tell you the Truth” on what it takes to be saved? From the Word of God, we find by example, commandment, and by inference, that for a person to be saved, they must hear the Truth of God’s Word (Romans 10:17); they Believe that Word (Hebrews 11:6); they must repent of their sins (Luke 13:3); they must confess Christ as the Son of God (Matthew 10:32); they MUST be baptized in the name of Christ for the remission of sins (Acts 2:38; Mark 16:16; I Peter 3:21). Many want to try and be saved by other means and ways, but this is the Truth on what it takes to be saved and nothing else is acceptable.
“Am I therefore become your enemy, because I tell you the Truth” on how you should live? As a child of God, we cannot live as we please. God has given us instructions on Christian living. We are to live faithfully unto death (Revelation 2:10); we are to live soberly, righteously, and godly (Titus 2:12); we are to put the kingdom of God and His righteousness first in our lives (Matthew 6:33); we are to abstain from the very appearance of evil (I Thessalonians 5:22); we are to avoid the works of the flesh, and put on the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:19-26); we are to add to our faith the Christian graces (II Peter 1:5-10); we are to pray without ceasing (I Thessalonians 5:17); we are to be steadfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord (I Corinthians 15:58); and we are not to forsake the assembly (Hebrews 10:25). Brethren, this is the way we are to live to be pleasing to God, and nothing else is acceptable to Him.
“Am I therefore become your enemy, because I tell you the Truth” that there is only one church? Ephesians 4:4 states, “There is one body,” and Colossians 1:18 lets us know that the body is the Church. This Church is the one that was prophesied by Isaiah and Daniel, and it is the one that the Lord promised to build (Matthew 16:16-18), and it is that one that came into existence on Pentecost, in Jerusalem, A.D. 33. It is to the Church that the Lord added to those “as should be saved,” and only those who are in this Church will be saved. Many would have you to believe that there are good “Christians” in the denominational bodies, but unless you are a part of the Body of Christ, you will not be saved based on the Truth found in God’s Word.
“Am I therefore become your enemy, because I tell you the Truth” that a child of God can be lost? Contrary to popular belief, “once saved, always saved” is not in the Bible. In fact, we have numerous Scriptures which teach otherwise. One in particular is found in I Corinthians 10:12, “Wherefore, let him that thinketh he standeth, take heed lest he fall.” Peter, in his writings, encouraged us to “give diligence to make our calling and election sure; for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall” (II Peter 1:11). The Bible over and over again encourages us to examine ourselves to be sure that we are remaining steadfast in the faith. Brethren, we can stumble and fall due to trials and temptations in our lives, and this is the Truth.
And finally, “Am I therefore become your enemy, because I tell you the Truth” on where we will be for all eternity? There are only two places prepared as a dwelling place for the souls of man after judgment. All that have ever lived will be in one of these two places. There is no middle ground, and there is no probation period of 1000 years as some teach. When we die, and the judgment comes, we will either be allowed to enter Heaven, that place of beautiful rest, ready for the “good and faithful servant” of the Lord, or we will be condemned to Hell, that place of torment “where the worm dieth not and the fire is not quenched.” One is a place of eternal reward, while the other is a place of eternal punishment. There are many that think they have a spot reserved in Heaven just waiting for them, but what did our Lord say? “Not every one that saith unto me Lord, Lord, shall enter the kingdom of heaven; but he that doth the will of my Father which is in heaven” (Matthew 7:21). Where we live for all eternity is conditional, based on whether or not we have done God’s Will in this life, and that is the Truth.
Brethren and friends, to the best of my ability, using God’s Word as my guide I have told you the Truth. Now let me ask you “Am I therefore become your enemy?”
Danny L. Box