Gospel of Man or of God?

Jesus Gave Himself for
Galatians 1:2-5 ESV

“To the churches of Galatia:

“Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, who gave himself for our sins to deliver us from the present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father, to whom be the glory forever and ever. Amen.”

Amen! Jesus Christ did not give himself for our sins so that we can now continue living in sin guilt free. He did not give himself for our sins just so we can go to heaven when we die and so we can escape the punishment of our sin in hell. He gave himself to deliver us from our bondage to sin.

Yes! Jesus died on that cross that we might die with him to sin and live to him and to his righteousness. He died that we might no longer live for ourselves but for him who gave his life up for us. By his grace, through faith, we are crucified with Christ in death to sin and raised to new lives in him.

For, he gave his life for us on that cross to deliver us from evil, to deliver us from our slavery to sin, that we might now become slaves of God and of his righteousness. He died for us that we might now no longer walk according to the flesh, but that we might walk (in practice) according to the Spirit.

[1 Pet 2:24; 2 Co 5:15; Rom 6:1-23; Eph 4:17-24; Rom 8:1-17]

Turning to a Different Gospel
Galatians 1:6-9 ESV

“I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel — not that there is another one, but there are some who trouble you and want to distort the gospel of Christ. But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed. As we have said before, so now I say again: If anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to the one you received, let him be accursed.”

What is a “different gospel”? It is any teaching disguised as the true gospel of Christ which is a deviation from the true gospel. It is any gospel, supposedly of Christ, which is a creation in the minds of humans. And this includes a gospel which is half true but half a lie, and thus is a lie.

The “different gospel” which is permeating the church today is often referred to as “the cheap grace gospel” because it dilutes the true gospel of grace, and thus it cheapens it, i.e., it adulterates it, and it makes it into something opposite of the true gospel of grace.

For, the true grace of God, as is mentioned above, delivers us from our slavery (bondage, addiction) to sin. It crucifies us (self, flesh) with Christ in death to sin, and it raises us with Christ to newness of life in him, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.

And the true grace of God instructs (teaches, trains) us to say “No!” to ungodliness and fleshly lusts and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives while we wait for Christ’s return. And it empowers us to live godly and holy lives, which are pleasing to God.

But this cheap grace gospel is teaching that faith in Jesus Christ requires nothing of us other than to “believe” in Jesus which is more of an emotional decision or an intellectual acknowledgment to believe in Jesus for salvation from sin on the promise of heaven secured them when they die.

For, it requires no dying with Christ to sin, and no living to Christ and to his righteousness, no walking according to the Spirit, no walks of obedience to our Lord’s commands, and no submission to the Lordship of Christ over our lives as essential elements of believing faith in Jesus Christ.

For they teach a one-time belief in Jesus which then assures the believer of eternal life with God regardless of how he lives once he professes faith in Jesus Christ. They stress “no obedience” to Christ as necessary, for they call that legalism or works-based salvation.

But the Scriptures definitely teach we must die and be dying with Christ to sin daily, and that we must walk (in conduct, in practice) according to the Spirit and not according to the flesh, and we must follow our Lord Jesus in obedience to his commands and to his ways.

For, the Scriptures say, if we walk according to the flesh, and we continue in sin deliberately and as a matter of practice, that we will not inherit eternal life with God, but that we will die in our sins. It won’t matter what we have professed with our lips. For lip service saves no one.

So, if someone is telling you that you don’t have to repent of your sins, or that you don’t have to obey the Lord and his commands, or that you don’t have to submit to him as Lord, they are lying to you. The faith that saves you comes from God, not from yourself, and it therefore submits to God.

[Rom 6:1-23; Eph 4:17-24; Tit 2:11-14; Lu 9:23-26; Rom 8:1-17; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Gal 2:20; Gal 5:16-21; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 2:6-8]

Not Man’s Gospel
Galatians 1:10-12 ESV

“For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ.

“For I would have you know, brothers, that the gospel that was preached by me is not man’s gospel. For I did not receive it from any man, nor was I taught it, but I received it through a revelation of Jesus Christ.”

So, be wise and discerning about what you are receiving as “the gospel,” for much of what is being taught today in the name of Jesus Christ is not the gospel of Christ, but it is a man-made gospel intended to tickle the itching ears of those who want to continue in their sins.

Watch out on social media for “memes” which are purposefully misdirecting people to what is false. They may look good and sound good, but many of them are twisting the gospel and are making it something it is not. Many of them are giving a message of a “do nothing” gospel.

And if you are teaching the true gospel, the one taught by Jesus and by the New Testament apostles, be prepared to be fought against, to be derided, to be rejected, despised, mistreated, and lied about, too. For many people are following the cheap grace gospel, and so many of them will oppose you, too.

Praise the Lord

Lyrics by John Kempthorne (1775-1838),
Music by Lowell Mason (1841)

Based on Psalm 148:1-2

Praise the Lord! ye heav’ns adore him;
Praise him angels, in the height;
Sun and moon, rejoice before him;
Praise him, all ye stars of light.

Praise the Lord! for he has spoken;
Worlds his mighty voice obeyed;
Laws which never shall be broken
For their guidance he has made.

Praise the Lord! for he is glorious;
Never shall his promise fail;
God has made his saints victorious;
Sin and death shall not prevail.

Praise the God of our salvation!
Hosts on high his pow’r proclaim;
Heav’n, and earth, and all creation,
Laud and magnify his name.

Worship, honor, glory, blessing,
Lord, we offer unto thee;
Young and old, thy praise expressing,
In glad homage bend the knee.

All the saints in heav’n adore thee,
We would bow before thy throne;
As thine angels serve before thee,
So on earth thy will be done.

Hallelujah! Amen. Hallelujah!
Amen, Amen, Amen.

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