Perversions of the Grace of God

Jude 1:3-4 ESV

“Beloved, although I was very eager to write to you about our common salvation, I found it necessary to write appealing to you to contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints. For certain people have crept in unnoticed who long ago were designated for this condemnation, ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into sensuality and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.”

Who are These People Today?

Many of them are pastors of church congregations. Some of them are very famous, and some are not. Some of them pastor mega churches, and some do not. And some of them are writers of books and devotionals which are popular among the people and are often quoted by them. So some of them are highly revered in the Christian community, and thus if they say it, it is quoted, and many people believe it just because they said it.

So, what is common among them? Most of them are part of the institutional church which is a business of men. It is not the true church, the body of Christ, which is compromised of only true followers of Jesus Christ. And so these pastors are following the teachings of men who are teaching them how to market their “churches” to the world using worldly means and methods.

Since their goal is to attract the world to their gatherings, they have altered the meaning of “church.” The church is supposed to operate in the power and under the direction of the Holy Spirit, but now much of it operates according to market schemes on how to draw in large crowds of people into their gatherings and on how to keep them coming back for more of what they were offering them when they showed up the first time.

Since their goal is to attract and to keep the world coming back for more, they have also altered the message of the gospel so as not to offend the people of the world, so they will not feel uncomfortable in the gatherings of “the church,” and so that they will not feel judged. So, they mostly all have removed God’s requirements for repentance, obedience, and submission to Christ as Lord as part of our believing faith which saves and sanctifies.

Twisting the Scriptures

In order to pull this off they teach the Scriptures so that it appears that what they are teaching is biblical, but they usually teach them outside their context, and thus they interpret them in ways that are not intended and that twist the Scriptures to say what they don’t say. They skip over the verses that say what they don’t want to hear while they focus largely on the verses (taught out of context) that they want to hear and to accept.

Their idea of what it means to be saved and to have eternal life with God is that one just has to believe, which is true, but then what they teach about belief and the life of the believer is opposite of what Jesus and his apostles taught. To them, it is a one-time decision to believe in Jesus after which they are told that they now belong to the family of God, that heaven is now guaranteed them when they die, and that nothing can take that away.

There are some elements of truth to what they are saying, for Satan can only deceive people if he tells some of the truth but then he blends it with his lies. But believing in Jesus, biblically, involves being crucified with him in death to sin and being raised with him to walk in newness of life in him, free from slavery to sin, and now free to become slaves of God and of his righteousness. We are no longer to live as slaves of sin.

But God’s promises to us and our salvation from sin are conditional upon us meeting the requirements that he sets down for us. And he requires repentance, obedience, and submission to him as Lord, but not just once, but continuously. For our salvation is a process of sanctification and it will not be complete until our Lord returns, and provided that we continue believing in him with steadfastness until the very end.

But even though that is what the Scriptures teach, they call that “works-based salvation.” And so they convince their adherents that they do not have to do anything in the way of submitting to Christ or obeying him or forsaking their sins. And if they should feel guilty about sinning against God, they are supposed to just “claim who you are in Christ,” i.e. that they are “saved, sanctified, cleansed, forgiven, redeemed, and accepted by God.

A Confession is not Proof of Salvation

But just because they make a confession of Jesus Christ as Savior of their lives, it does not mean that they are saved from their sins or that heaven is their eternal destiny. They may not believe in Jesus at all with biblical faith but only with human faith as taught to them by other humans. And even if they do believe, the Scriptures teach that we must walk in the light as God is in the light, and we must walk according to the Spirit and not according to the flesh if we want to be saved and to have eternal life with God.

So, when they convince them all that they are saved, done deal, and that heaven is secured them no matter how much or how often they sin against the Lord, and that nothing else is required of them, they are lying to them, for they are perverting the grace of God into sensuality and they are denying Jesus Christ as our only Lord and Master. And when they tell them to just claim who they are in Christ when they are sinning, to alleviate their guilt, they are circumventing the Holy Spirit so that they don’t listen to God.

And that is not biblical anyway. Read the New Testament. When the Christians were sinning against the Lord the apostles did not tell them to just claim that they are saved, redeemed, and accepted by God, and that they are to assume that any guilt they are feeling is coming from Satan, who they are to ignore. The Scriptures teach that they are to cast those sins off, to forsake them, and that they are to put on righteousness and godliness.

And the Scriptures also warned the Christians that if they did not forsake their sinful practices, but they continued in deliberate and habitual sin, and if they did not follow the Lord in obedience, and if they did not love their brothers and sisters in Christ, and if they did not remain steadfast in faith unto the very end, that they would not inherit eternal life with God. And they warn that some will hear Jesus say, “I never knew you. Depart from me.”

So, be discerning about what you are hearing. Just because a famous preacher said it doesn’t mean it is true. Test everything you hear against the word of God in context. Don’t become disciples of these charlatans who are twisting the Scriptures and who are perverting the grace of God into sensuality and into a license for immorality, who are also teaching you to deny Jesus as your only Lord and Master and to believe them, instead.

[Matt 7:21-23; 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; Rom 12:1-2; Eph 2:8-10; Php 2:12-13; Col 1:21-23; Gal 5:16-21; Eph 5:3-6; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 2:6-8; Heb 10:26-27; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Rev. 2-3; Rev 18:1-6; Rev 21:8, 27; Rev 22:14-15]

For Our Nation

An Original Work / September 11, 2012

Bombs are bursting. Night is falling.
Jesus Christ is gently calling
You to follow Him in all ways.
Trust Him with your life today.
Make Him your Lord and your Savior.
Turn from your sin. Follow Jesus.
He will forgive you of your sin;
Cleanse your heart, made new within.

Men betraying: Our trust fraying.
On our knees to God we’re praying,
Seeking God to give us answers
That are only found in Him.
God is sovereign over all things.
Nothing from His mind escaping.
He has all things under His command,
And will work all for good.

Jesus Christ is gently calling
You to follow Him in all ways.

Men deceiving: we’re believing
In our Lord, and interceding
For our nation and its people
To obey their God today.
He is our hope for our future.
For our wounds He offers suture.
He is all we need for this life.
Trust Him with your life today.

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