Apostles and ministers constantly struggling against FALSE DOCTRINEScreeping in, and against COUNTERFEIT MINISTERS who were trying to lead off people after themselves.Notice, the council at Jerusalem was held for THIS VERY REASON! "AndCERTAIN MEN which came down from Judea TAUGHT the brethren, and said,'Except you be circumcised after the manner of Moses, you cannot be saved"'(Acts 15:l). Notice further that these men wanted to ARGUE about the small,physical question of circumcision. "When therefore Paul and Barnabas had nosmall DISSENSION with them, they determined that Paul and Barnabas, andcertain other of them, should go up to Jerusalem unto the apostles and eldersabout this question" (Acts 15:2).God's GOVERNMENT went into effect, and a DECISION was rendered byJames, the chief Apostle at Jerusalem (vs. 19), and the other apostles thendelivered a DECREE (binding, authoritative DECISION, as a LAW) to thebrethren in the Church (Acts 16:4).
In Paul's letters of correction and exhortation to the early Church, he wasoften forced to show them, by the manner of his calling and training the AUTHENTICITY of his office. Notice how many of his letters begin withstatements of Divinely-ordained AUTHORITY (See Rom. 1:1-5, I Cor. 1:1, II Cor.1:1, Gal. 1:1-24, etc.) Almost immediately after the beginning of God's true Church, certain menarose who began to lead away followings after themselves — out of human jealousy and vanity! "For I know this," Paul said to the Ephesian elders, "thatafter my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing theflock. Also of YOUR OWN SELVES shall men arise, speaking perverse things, toDRAW AWAY DISCIPLES AFTER THEM" (Acts 20:29-30).In the three cities or southern Galatia, Iconium, Lystra and Derbe, the storyhad been circulated, apparently, that Paul was merely Peter's "messenger boy,"and an attempt was made to appeal to SUPPOSED CONFLICTS WITHIN THEMINISTRY in order to confuse and divide the Church. Paul, FOR THAT VERYREASON, unhesitatingly stated the mistake Peter had made in disfellowshippingthe Gentiles in presence of the Jews, and told the Church, "But when I saw thatthey walked not uprightly according to the truth of the Gospel, I said unto Peter before them all, 'If thou, being a Jew, livest after the manner of the Gentiles, andnot as do the Jews, why compellest thou the Gentiles to live as do the Jews?' "(Gal. 2:14). The remaining verses of this entire chapter are the inspired wordsPAUL SPOKE TO PETER! The often quoted, wonderful statement of Paul, "I amcrucified with Christ, nevertheless I live, yet not I, BUT CHRIST LIVETH IN ME"(vs. 20) was a statement made directly to Peter to show the AUTHORITY bywhich Paul spoke. It was CHRIST who inspired Paul to speak thusly. Make nomistake! Peter and Paul were not enemies! Everything was done for the ADVANCEMENT of the Church, for the GOOD of the flock. The important thingto notice also is that Peter DID take the correction and later called him BELOVED