Class #54: As St. Paul summarizes his letter, he wants the Galatians to know three things about the Judaizers, who were teaching falsely. First, they were doing it out of pride that they might “make a good showing” before others and boast of their ability to win disciples after themselves. Second, they were requiring the law so “that they might not suffer persecution for the cross of Christ.” Third, these false teachers require circumcision, but they don’t keep the whole law. Gal. 5:3, “…every man who becomes circumcised that he is a debtor to keep the whole law.”
It is the second point which is most important. In Galatians 5:11, St. Paul said, “And I, brethren, if I still preach circumcision, why do I still suffer persecution? Then the offense of the cross has ceased.” Any time you add a law requirement to the Gospel, the gospel ceases to be Gospel. Gal 5:2, “Indeed I, Paul, say to you that if you become circumcised, Christ will profit you nothing.” The Judaizers were able to avoid persecution by saying salvation is by Jesus AND the keeping the law of circumcision.