The Importance Of Making The Point
As Paul started to conclude his letter to the Galatian churches, he writes the final paragraph in his own handwriting. This was unusual as he usually dictated what he spoke. Paul would normally sign off with a short greeting; but in this letter he wanted to make sure that his readers were under no illusion about the importance of the letter. The churches had been plagued by false teachers demanding that all Christians should be circumcised, and follow the laws of the Old Testament. But Paul said that would take away from the work of Christ. Such legalism was unhelpful, unproductive, misleading, diversionary and simply wrong!
He needed to make the point clearly and strongly. So he wrote the essence of the whole letter in one paragraph, in his own large handwriting. There was to be no mistake: Paul intended people to change their thoughts, attitude and behaviour when they had read the letter, or the letter was read aloud to them. The reference to his handwriting would have alerted the listeners that the Apostle was very serious about what he had written: he would not tolerate false teaching in the churches.
There are times when we need to be bold and clear about what is right and wrong. We cannot indefinitely hide away and allow lies to breed in the vacuum of our silence. Truth is the only antidote to lies. However inconvenient it may be to speak out, and whatever consequences may come (and Paul was in prison because he spoke out), the truth must be heard, explained, underlined and set in bold type. Of course, you will only do that if you believe it and know the power of God’s truth to transform lives. That is why the Holy Spirit is given to every believer, to give us that confidence (Acts 1:8). So welcome Him to give you courage in your heart and the right words on your lips [or emails or text!] (Matthew 10:19).
© Dr Paul Adams