I. Why did Paul single-out Apostles and Angels? Gal. 1:8
A. Apostles come from the greek Apostolos which means messenger or ambassador
B. Angel comes from the greek Angelos which means messenger from God
C. Jesus is the ultimate revelation from God. There will be no more new revelation from God
II. Main Issue in the church: Does a person need to follow the Law of Moses in order to be saved?
A. The Apostles and Church leaders agreed: No! It’s Jesus plus nothing Gal 2:1-3, 7-9
B. The Judaizers said Yes! It’s Jesus plus the Law of Moses
C. Paul said all the religious traditions do not add anything to earn your salvation Gal 2:16
III. Guidelines for evaluating the validity of a religious tradition
A. Religious tradition is not a means to be saved nor a means to have your sins forgiven Eph 2:8-9
B. Religious tradition must have a basis that is consistent with the teachings of the Bible
C. Observance of religious traditions must come from the heart, and not just a meaningless ritual done out of obligation. Isaiah 1:13-17
D. Religious tradition must not contradict the teachings of the Bible
E. We do good things not to earn salvation, but to learn about following Jesus
IV. God wants us to be assured of our relationship to Him. 1 John 5:11-13
A. Why? Because He loves us! 1 John 4:18-19
B. For love to be love, it cannot be motivated by fear
Some questions to consider this week:
1. What was one thing you remember from the message on Sunday?
2. Read Galatians 2:1-10, Acts 15:1-11. What do these verses tell us about the accuracy of Paul’s Gospel that he was preaching?
3. Gospel literally means “good news”. How would you define the Gospel? Look at Acts 15:7-9; 11; 1 Corinthians15:1-4; 2 Corinthians 5:17-21.
4. Why is it important for a person to know where he is going after he dies? How does the Gospel of Jesus answer this question?
5. What “religious traditions” did you grow up with that you aren’t practicing today? Why the change?
6. Do you still have family or friends who are part of a traditions-based religion? How can you share with them the “Jesus plus nothing” gospel?
7. Some churches practice praying to dead saints, claiming it’s no different from asking prayers in a prayer meeting, among “living saints.” What is the difference between sharing a prayer request in a prayer meeting versus praying to someone who is already dead?
8. Quote: In church, we do good things “not to earn salvation, but to learn about following Jesus”. How does that statement clarify the purpose of religious tradition in your understanding?