The Word of the Week – Gospel Compromise
Galatians 1:6-9 NASB I am amazed that you are so quickly deserting Him who called you by the grace of Christ, for a different gospel; 7 which is really not another; only there are some who are disturbing you and want to distort the gospel of Christ. 8 But even if we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to what we have preached to you, he is to be accursed! 9 As we have said before, so I say again now, if any man is preaching to you a gospel contrary to what you received, he is to be accursed!
In his letter to the churches of Galatia, the apostle Paul clearly establishes the doctrine of sola fide (justification by faith alone). Why? At this time, the gospel had come under attack by some men who were teaching the churches that circumcision was necessary for one to be saved – Acts 15:1 NASB Some men came down from Judea and began teaching the brethren, “Unless you are circumcised according to the custom of Moses, you cannot be saved.”
In his address, Paul writes that he is amazed that the Galatians had so quickly turned away from the true Gospel unto the so-called gospel of the false teachers. Notice that Paul equates abandonment of the Gospel with desertion of God Himself. Therefore, we must understand that the Gospel is an essential element of the Christian faith that cannot be altered or compromised in any way.
In reality, the “gospel” of the false teachers was really not another genuine gospel for there is only one true Gospel that actually has the power to save. This is why it is important that do not get caught in the trap of false gospels purported by so-called Christian organizations that are in reality compromising the gospel by adding works to faith (such as LDS, Jehovah’s Witnesses, etc.)
Even if Paul himself or an angel from heaven were to attempt to change the Gospel he instructs the churches to ignore such change. Further, if anyone proclaims a gospel other than the Biblical Gospel, he is to be accursed – meaning eternally damned.
What are the elements of the Biblical Gospel? Paul lays these out for us in 1st Corinthians chapter 15, verses 3-4 – 1 Corinthians 15:3-4 NASB 3 For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 and that He was buried, and that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures…
How is the Gospel to be received? Galatians 2:16 NASB …a man is not justified by the works of the Law but through faith in Christ Jesus, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, so that we may be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the Law; since by the works of the Law no flesh will be justified.
What Gospel are you believing? What Gospel are you proclaiming? The true Gospel is grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone.
At the cross, at the cross where I first saw the light,
And the burden of my heart rolled away,
It was there by faith I received my sight,
And now I am happy all the day.
At the Cross, Isaac Watts 1674-1748
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