Some equate abstinence with religious asceticism, but abstinence is broader. Christians may need to abstain from more than just sinful actions.
In the end, philosophy is merely man's search for answers without God. Real truth is found in God's Word, not in the minds of self-important, fallible men.
We can glimpse Gnosticism in Paul's epistles to the Galatians and Colossians, in which he combats Gnosticism's twisting of the truth of Jesus Christ.
In order to justify not keeping the Sabbath, many use Colossians 2:16-17 as proof that Paul did not command it. Here is what they are overlooking.
The Colossian Christians were criticized by ascetics for the way they were keeping the Sabbath and holy days. Paul argues against a philosophy, not the law of God.
The Gnostics criticized by Paul in Colossians 2:16-17 were guilty of bringing in ritualistic ascetic discipline to propitiate demons.
Galatians 4:9-10 is a favorite crutch of those who claim Christians no longer need to observe God's holy days. However, Paul's meaning is quite different.
God has given us His Law, which shows us the way of sanctification and holiness. God is in the process of reproducing His kind — the God-kind.
In Colossians 2:16 and Galatians 4:9-10, Paul was warning against mixing Gnostic asceticism and pagan customs with the keeping of God's Sabbath and Holy Days.
When Satan confronted Adam and Eve, he fed them three heresies that Gnosticism incorporated into its parasitic philosophy and way of life.
Christ will empower us, but will not live our lives for us. The marching orders for our pilgrimage derive from God's Word, containing His holy law.
God has sanctified no day other than the Sabbath. Sunday worship is a pagan deviation, perpetuated by Gnosticism, a movement that despises God's laws.
Paul marveled at the Galatians' turning away. It was only 20 years before someone perverted the gospel into something that was no longer good news!
Colossae and Laodicea were susceptible to fast-talking teachers, whose plausible words eroded the true Gospel in favor of pagan thought and practice.
The blood of the Lamb grants us eternal life, as well as entrance to the Holy of Holies, enabling us to come before the throne of the Most High God.
We tend to think of the early Church as a 'golden age' of unity and momentum. But early church members experienced problems similar to what we face today.
Richard Ritenbaugh maintains that interpersonal and family relationships in Corinth could be characterized as highly dysfunctional. God's way regarding marital and family relationships was so drastically different from the Greek and Roman philosophical approaches that Paul had to start from scratch to build a godly family …
The paradox of Ecclesiastes 7 shows an unrighteous man flourishing and a righteous man suffering. The solution to this conundrum is found in Psalm 73.
The vast majority of Christian-professing churches has been saturated with pagan doctrines (like antinomianism and dispensationalism), derived from Gnosticism.