God’s Word reveals in the book of Galatians that a fall from grace occurs when one begins to trust their own “freewill” initiative to enter into God’s promises by works and going thru a physical process. False teachers had come in with this damnable heresy and taught that although faith is needed, more must be ADDED in order to be truly saved (Gal.5:4).
Apostle Paul stood strongly against the heresy of faith PLUS works, which was being slipped in by work-righteous heretics who were telling the Galatians that they needed to add circumcision to their faith in Christ, in order to be saved. They were subtly teaching that Jesus’ work on behalf of His people was not sufficient for salvation and that works had to be ADDED to the equation. As a result, they caused many Galatians to fall from grace into works.
Romans 11:6 clearly states that salvation is by God’s grace alone, NOT works, or else it would no longer be grace. Ephesians 2:8-1o also makes it clear that one can only be saved by God’s grace in granting the gift of faith in Christ, not of ourselves or our own works. Or else Christ died in vain (Gal.2:21).
False religions are STILL committing the Galatian heresy by adding works to faith in Christ and some even go to the extent of teaching that salvation by circumcision has been replaced with salvation by water baptism (such as the “Church of Christ” religion). In a “Church of Christ” publication, they write that “Circumcision was the covenant God made between Himself and His people. Baptism is God’s covenant for men today to become His children.” (housetohouse.com/article on the purpose of baptism). Scripture NEVER indicates that baptism has replaced circumcision (Rom2:29, Col.2).
Little do they realize that neither circumcision nor baptism can save anyone. “For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth anything, nor uncircumcision; but faith which worketh by love” (Gal.5:6). And without this true saving faith, all works are dead and done by those who are dead in their sins and trespasses, who’ve never had their spirits quickened from the dead by the Holy Spirit applying the gifts and merits of Jesus’ work to their account (Eph.1, 2, 4:8). Because all those Jesus died for WILL have a measure of faith that produces TRUE works of righteousness, done in love and DONE IN CHRIST (Rom.12:3, Acts 13:48, 2 Thess.3:2).
Even in the Old Testament, God’s people were saved by faith alone, in Christ alone (Rom.4). All the works of the law pointed forward to Christ, whom they were to believe. And even now, the law (which extends to all works) points back to Christ, whom we are to have faith in. “For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to all who BELIEVE” (Rom.10:4). He fulfilled all righteousness on behalf of His people so that they don’t work to be saved, but work BECAUSE they are saved and now hate their sin and love God, Who now works in them to do His will (Phil.2:13).
The tree has to first be made good by God, THEN it can produce good fruits. But false religion always puts the fruit before the tree, which convolutes the entire gospel. A bad, dead in sins tree cannot go through a physical process, such as baptism, and expect to be saved as a result. One must FIRST be born of the Spirit in the washing and renewing of Holy Spirit regeneration—-not baptismal regeneration, which is a damnable heresy.
All thru Scripture water refers to the Holy Spirit (Jn.3:5 original Greek translation means: “water EVEN the Spirit”). In Jn.7:38-39 Jesus even says, “He that believes upon me shall have rivers of living WATER flowing from them. And He was referring to the Spirit, which they whom believe upon Him shall receive”…….Did He leave out anything? NO! Yet, false teachers want to complicate the gospel of Christ by ADDING works to the equation (Titus 3:5).
This is why in 2 Cor.11:3-4 Paul said he feared minds would be corrupted by the subtlety of the devil, from the simplicity that is in Christ. He feared they’d fall for a different gospel and put up with those who try to complicate the true gospel of God’s grace alone, thru faith alone, in Jesus Christ alone. “Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage” (Gal.5:1).