2 Peter 2:1-3 ESV
“But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing upon themselves swift destruction. And many will follow their sensuality, and because of them the way of truth will be blasphemed. And in their greed they will exploit you with false words. Their condemnation from long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep.”
These “destructive heresies” are deviations from the truth. They are variants of the true gospel. They have elements of the true gospel contained within them, which is how they are able to pass them off as the truth, but they deviate (depart) from the truth at very critical junctures.
They are not pure, but impure. For, they muddy the truth, and they insert within their messages what is not the pure word of God but that which is of the flesh of man, which is intended to tickle itching ears and to satisfy the lusts of the flesh in one way or another.
One of them, in particular, which is spreading like wildfire across the USA, and perhaps into other countries, too, is what is commonly referred to as the “cheap grace gospel,” because it cheapens God’s grace and it makes his grace something that it is not, which is free license to keep on sinning.
This variant off of the true gospel is very surface level. For it teaches a faith in Jesus Christ which merely acknowledges who Jesus is and what he did for us on that cross, but which makes no requirements for dying with Christ to sin, nor for self-denial, nor for obedience to the Lord’s commands.
Those who are propagating this cheap grace gospel are teaching Scriptures out of their context and they are making them say what appeals to the flesh. And they are ignoring or discounting all Scriptures which teach what goes against the message that they are trying to persuade people to believe.
For, this variant, this heresy that is being taught as truth departs from God’s righteousness and holiness and from his moral standards and his commands, and it creates a different standard contrary to the word of God which allows for its followers to continue in deliberate and habitual sin against God. Thus, it vilifies the true gospel by calling it works-based salvation, while it encourages its followers to continue in their sinful practices guilt-free.
2 Peter 2:17-19 ESV
“These are waterless springs and mists driven by a storm. For them the gloom of utter darkness has been reserved. For, speaking loud boasts of folly, they entice by sensual passions of the flesh those who are barely escaping from those who live in error. They promise them freedom, but they themselves are slaves of corruption. For whatever overcomes a person, to that he is enslaved.”
This cheap grace gospel is devoid of the Holy Spirit because it is not of God but of man, and it appeals to human flesh, and it is all about making the flesh of man feel comfortable and not offended by the truth. It not only makes room for the flesh to survive and to thrive, but it does not submit to Jesus Christ as Lord, for flesh is still on the throne, not God.
So, they make a way for sin to still reign supreme while promising their followers that they can believe in Jesus, have their sins forgiven, and be guaranteed heaven as their eternal destiny when they die. Even though the Scriptures teach a narrow way to heaven, which few find, they teach a broad path, which many follow. But it leads to destruction.
So, they are promising their followers freedom while they themselves are slaves of depravity. And they are making their followers twice the sons of hell as they are, for they are leading them on the same path of destruction that they are following. For they are not teaching death to sin and living to righteousness, but death to righteousness and living to sin.
And people are flocking to this cheap grace gospel because then they can feel as though they can sin now without punishment and that they can go to heaven even though they will not submit to Christ while on this earth. But the Scriptures teach that we are slaves to whatever or whoever we obey. If we obey sin, it will end in death, but if we obey obedience, it will lead to righteousness and it will result in eternal life with God (Rom 6:16-23).
2 Peter 2:20-22 ESV
“For if, after they have escaped the defilements of the world through the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and overcome, the last state has become worse for them than the first. For it would have been better for them never to have known the way of righteousness than after knowing it to turn back from the holy commandment delivered to them. What the true proverb says has happened to them: “The dog returns to its own vomit, and the sow, after washing herself, returns to wallow in the mire.”
Many people today are teaching that we can believe in Jesus and have heaven guaranteed us when we die but that we don’t have to repent of our sins or obey the Lord or submit to him as Lord (owner-master). They are teaching that we can just pray a prayer, or acknowledge Jesus and what he did, or merely accept his gift of grace and forgiveness of sins, and that we are good to go for eternity no matter what happens.
But that is not what the Scriptures teach. They teach a salvation which is progressive and which won’t be complete until Jesus returns. And they teach a faith in Jesus that is present (not just past), that is active, that is obedient to the Lord, that is submissive and repentant, and that must endure until the very end for us to receive eternal life with God.
So, if someone makes a profession of faith in Jesus Christ and they begin walking with the Lord, but then the lusts of the flesh entice them to go back to living to the flesh, perhaps because they bought into the cheap grace gospel message, if they do not repent and change and walk in obedience to the Lord, and forsake their sinful practices, they don’t have eternal life with God but they will die in their sins, according to Scripture.
So, please know that the true gospel does not make room for you to continue in deliberate and habitual sin against the Lord. For if we make sin our practice, and righteousness is not what we practice, we will not inherit eternal life with God. And repentance is not just acknowledging that you sinned while you go right back to making sin your practice.
For, we are all going to stand before God one day and we are going to have to give an account for what we did in the body. We will be judged by our works. So, if we sow to please the flesh, from the flesh we will reap destruction, but if we sow to please the Spirit, from the Spirit we will reap eternal life. Please take this to heart.
[Lu 9:23-26; Jn 6:35-58; Jn 15:1-11; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; Eph 4:17-24; 1 Pet 2:24; 1 Co 6:9-10, 19-20; 2 Co 5:10, 15; Tit 2:11-14; Jas 1:22-25; Gal 5:16-21; Eph 5:3-6; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 2:6-8; Matt 7:21-23; Heb 10:26-27; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Rom 12:1-2; Eph 2:8-10]
Songwriter: Andrew Lloyd-Webber
Who takes away the sins of the world
Qui tollis peccata mundi
Give them rest, grant them rest
Dona eis requiem, dona eis requiem
Lamb of God
Who takes away the sins of the world
Qui tollis peccata mundi
Grant them eternal rest
Dona eis requiem
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