“The truth? You can’t handle the truth.”
Jack Nicholson’s line from the 1992 file A Few Good Men is one of the most memorable movie quotes of all time.
Not many people can handle the truth, but the Apostle Paul was certainly unafraid to speak plainly to the people he cared for in the Galatian churches:
Have I then become your enemy by telling you the truth? Galatians 4:16
The Galatians were being drawn away from the truth of the Gospel. How? These new teachers were full of flattering words to tickle the ears, but the lasting impact of their false gospel was slavery, not freedom.
Paul is passionate about the Gospel! Take a look at the emotion he expresses in Galatians 4: 17-20.
“Those people are zealous to win you over, but for no good. What they want is to alienate you from us, so that you may have zeal for them. It is fine to be zealous, provided the purpose is good, and to be so always, not just when I am with you. My dear children, for whom I am again in the pains of childbirth until Christ is formed in you, how I wish I could be with you now and change my tone because I am perplexed about you!”
Paul is perplexed…astonished…dumbfounded…taken aback…flabbergasted.
Have you ever felt the hurt of someone falling prey to a lie? How could they be so gullible? deceived?
There is no shortage of false teaching invading the church today and maybe we’ll begin looking at some trends in the church tomorrow.
The question for each of us is – am I willing to tell the truth even when it hurts?