The Word of God teaches, that those who are always more theatrical in the things of God are those who will not lead us into the truth of God’s Word—They will always have a list of do’s and don’t’s that they want us to follow—just like in this verse when the Jewish Christian’s were trying to hang on to the old ways of the law.
The law in any form could not save us—not because it wasn’t good, but because we are weak and couldn’t keep it. Today’s verse warns us about those people who “make a good showing in their flesh.” Doesn’t it kind of remind you of the publican? In Matthew 6:5 Jesus also tells us there, it is the “hypocrites who love to pray...” This is a warning, so don’t give so much credit to those who put on a good show. The Word of God teaches us it’s what’s inside that counts, and that we should speak to God more in secret than openly, because God is in secret. We are not to please man, but to please God.
Our verse’s warning, also shows us that these same people will lead us into other wrong teaching. Tricked by their many words, many can be deceived that their knowledge is of God, when instead it is man’s wisdom and not God’s. Notice that our verse says, they are trying to avoid persecution that comes because of what Christ did for us on the cross. The truth is, we will have hard times, but the good news is... Jesus will bring us through it victoriously, if we put our trust in Him. I’ve heard a saying that if a Christian doesn’t bump into Satan now and then, chances are they are both headed in the same direction.
Let’s not look at our circumstances which can deceive us, instead, Jesus is who we are to imitate, and follow His examples. He will lead us on the path to victory every time.
Father, there are many things that try to keep us from Your truth, open our eyes and let Your light shine brightly on our path so our way to walk is clear and our eyes are always stayed on You. Thank You for Your written Word which is the light for our path. Place within us a strong desire to meditate in Your word, that we may see our way more clearly. And may we always be sensitive to the discernment which comes from the Holy Spirit. In Jesus’ name, Amen.