8 Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ. 9 For in Him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily;
The above scripture meant a lot to me when I first encountered Christ. (still does).
It showed me clearly that, whether by my own invention or the influence of others who had ‘invented’ before me – I had been cheated and robbed of the answer to life and the after life.
‘Cheating’ can involve fraud or deception.
Deceived into holding on to the theories of mankind, birthed in his own imagination alone.
What Paul describes here as ‘philosophical’, is the fruit of ‘empty deceit’. That which comes out of the very basic principles of the world, the unspiritual, the unaided intellect of man. The outcome being the concealing or misrepresentation of true truth.
The result too, that man is left to his own devices with that which he affirms as being correct having no infallible certainty.
No supreme authority to arbitrate between opinions. Only opinion versus opinion versus opinion.
Beware lest you are cheated from true spiritual reality, beware lest you are cheated and robbed of true-truth, as provided by and in the Person of the Son of God.
Don’t let anyone deceive you, or rob you, or cheat you, from pursuing the source of all wisdom and knowledge.
There is a way that seems right to a man, But its end is the way of death.
Notice – ‘seems right’. Most of us will stand for something we believe. We affirm most emphatically at times, that we are right.
We are good at this.
But though it seems right. We can be completely wrong because what we conclude and affirm regarding spiritual matters comes out of our fallen intellect.
We are no different than all those who have gone before. We have the same minds used in the same way to ascertain truth.
We think we have dreamt up something completely and totally new, but really it is simply history repeating itself.
Someone, somewhere, before you and I, has come to the same conclusions in keeping with the traditions of men,
We need a higher authority than man to step in and give us something.
Guidance, spiritual revelation, demonstration of Divine Power, only this affirms what is absolute.
All the philosophies that clutter the internet or as it used to be the bookshelves, fall short miserably, if they are [in the words of this telling phrase], of scripture:
…not according to Christ. 9 For in Him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily
We are on sinking sand, with our conclusions outside of the Revelation of Jesus Christ.
Whether you or I like it or not – unless, when it comes to spiritual matters – our conclusions are based on and according to the words of Christ we are cheated, and robbed of what only He can supply.