Then after fourteen years, I went up again to Jerusalem, this time with Barnabas. I took Titus along also. 2 I went in response to a revelation and, meeting privately with those esteemed as leaders, I presented to them the gospel that I preach among the Gentiles. I wanted to be sure I was not running and had not been running my race in vain. 3 Yet not even Titus, who was with me, was compelled to be circumcised, even though he was a Greek. 4 This matter arose because some false believers had infiltrated our ranks to spy onthe freedom we have in Christ Jesus and to make us slaves. 5 We did not give in to them for a moment, so that the truth of the gospel might be preserved for you. Galatians 2:1-5.
The apostle Paul is giving a time line of his gospel and his meetings in Jerusalem with those who are in leadership. In the body of Christ no person is an island to themselves. The Lord did not give any of the apostles ultimate authority, but each one was given a position of leadership and was called upon to serve one another.
The apostle Paul was commissioned by the Lord to take the gospel to the gentiles. The door to the gentiles receiving the gospel was opened when Peter went to the home of Cornelius by the leading of the Holy Spirit and the Holy Spirit was poured out upon this gentile man and his entire household.
Paul meets with those in leadership and shares with them the revelations he has received concerning the Lord and the gospel he is preaching. The Lord has distributed spiritual gifts throughout the body of Christ and when we give people the freedom to operate in those gifts we are able to experience the fullness of all that the Lord has for us.
But what was happening is that some were trying to infiltrate the body of Christ and teaching that those who came to Christ were required to follow the law. Jesus fulfilled the law so this was a false teaching. They were especially trying to force circumcision on new believers. The purpose of Jesus death and resurrection is freedom. Freedom from the curse of sin and death and freedom from having to hold to the requirements of the law.
Today we who are in Christ simply follow the leading of the Holy Spirit. We don’t follow the demands of the law. It is the Holy Spirit who convicts our hearts when we are doing something that we should not. As we grow in our relationship with Jesus Christ the desires of the flesh fade into the background and the only thing that remains is a desire to seek the Lord with our whole heart.
We must come to understand the freedom and authority we have through the shed blood of Jesus. We are no longer bound by the things of the past, but we are a new creation in Christ Jesus. As we seek the Lord daily and spend time in prayer and the study of His word the Holy Spirit will lead and guide us into all truth. As we come to understand the truth of God’s word in great ways we will walk in deeper levels of freedom. The bottom line message of the gospel is that we are simply free in Jesus Christ.