(For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ:
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Those who bring him to tears are the very ones who had already overthrown the Galatians. By treacherous proceedings they were destroying the churches in the name of Christ…. He speaks of these people with grief and tears. They were impeding the salvation of the faithful by raising questions about the eating of or abstinence from food. It is as though salvation were in food or as if “God were a belly,” one whom they believed to take delight in worldly foods according to the law while they gloried in the circumcision of their private parts. This is what it is to “think earthly thoughts.” One who “thinks spiritual thoughts” glories in faith, hope and charity.
There are two types of misunderstanding of Christ, or rather one class of two descriptions, who are enemies of Christ. For some in their carnal thoughts deride the cross of Christ, thinking of Christ merely as a man raised onto a cross…. These pay attention to nothing but the flesh. To them “their god is a belly” and their “glory is in filthiness.” These are the ones who “think earthly thoughts” and whose end is death. On the other hand, there are those who think of Christ only as a spirit. They do not think of him as incarnate or crucified. They too are enemies to the cross of Christ, having death as their end.
An exhortation is stronger when it is accompanied by what is fearful in its alternative…. Paul expresses heartfelt affection when he describes the evils suffered by those who live otherwise, saying, “I say it with tears. ”
On which our life both sprang up again, and the victory over death was obtained in Christ, whom the children of perdition, the enemies of the Saviour, deny, "whose god is their belly, who mind earthly things".
For if they had been branches of the Father, they would not have been "enemies of the cross of Christ".
Beware, therefore, of those that hasten to work mischief, those "enemies of the cross of Christ, whose end is destruction, whose glory is in their shame."
Nothing is so incongruous in a Christian, and foreign to his character, as to seek ease and rest; and to be engrossed with the present life is foreign to our profession and enlistment. Your Master was crucified, and do you seek ease? Your Master was pierced with nails, and do you live delicately? Do these things become a noble soldier? Wherefore Paul says, Many walk, of whom I told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ. Since there were some who made a pretense of Christianity, yet lived in ease and luxury, and this is contrary to the Cross: therefore he thus spoke. For the cross belongs to a soul at its post for the fight, longing to die, seeking nothing like ease, while their conduct is of the contrary sort. So that even if they say, they are Christ's, still they are as it were enemies of the Cross. For did they love the Cross, they would strive to live the crucified life. Was not your Master hung upon the tree? Do thou otherwise i...