False, yet tempting philosophies, have existed for a long time.
The church of Colossae was threatened by a heresy that included some elements of Jewish legalism, such as requiring circumcisions, requiring certain dietary laws, and strange mysticism.
Similar philosophies exist today, and people constantly try to add to the Gospel. When they do that, they take away from Christ.
I remember growing up in Italy and seeing how some Catholics would try to inflict some type of self-imposed penance for redemption. Today, it often seems to be the opposite, as hedonism seems to reign as the current religion.
When we try to add to Christ, we are actually taking away from Christ. Paul alludes and addresses the false philosophies at the time, but his main focus is on the truth and focuses on Christ.
“See to it that no one takes you captive by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ.
“For in him the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily, and you have been filled in him, who is the head of all rule and authority. In him also you were circumcised with a circumcision made without hands, by putting off the body of the flesh, by the circumcision of Christ, having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the powerful working of God, who raised him from the dead.
“And you, who were dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses, by canceling the record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands. This he set aside, nailing it to the cross. He disarmed the rulers and authorities and put them to open shame, by triumphing over them in Him.”