April 2013 Teaching Letter - The Only One and True Gospel
Romans 1:16-17 "For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, The just shall live by faith." Jesus told us in John 8:31-32 that "if we continue in his word then we are his disciples indeed and we will know the truth and the truth shall make us free." We have the greatest message and greatest truth that the world has ever seen. The problem is that we in the church have contaminated this message and mixed it with the law of bondage and condemnation so that not only are many in the church not free, but those in the world will not even listen to our words as they lack the compassion and loving kindness of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ. Paul said that the gospel is the power of God and it is the only means of righteousness. Notice he said that this gospel is the same for both Jew and Gentile. Not one message for the Jew and another for the Gentile but the same message for both. First Corinthians 1: 18 "For the message of the cross is foolish to those who are perishing but to us who are saved it is the power of God." The message of the cross is the gospel of Jesus Christ. Jesus died on a cross in our place and was raised from the dead by the power of the Holy Spirit and if we put our faith and trust in Him and that finished work we will be born-again and inherit all the spiritual blessings that the Holy Spirit can possibly give. Notice again that the message is the same for the saved and the unsaved. The message is the same Jew and Gentile.
Paul said in Galatians 1:6-8 "I marvel that you are turning away so soon from Him who called you in the grace of Christ, to a different gospel, which is not another; but there are some who trouble you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ. But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed." Paul told us that we are not the preach any other gospel except the gospel that he preached and warned us not to preach or go back to the law of Moses or mix any part of the dispensation of the law with the dispensation of grace. In Acts chapter 14 and verse three Paul tells us that it is the gospel of grace by which signs and wonders are done. "Therefore they stayed there a long time, speaking boldly in the Lord, who was bearing witness to the word of His grace, granting signs and wonders to be done by their hands.” Acts 20:24 "But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God." Paul called the New Testament and the message that he preached the gospel of grace and the dispensation of grace. Verse 32 of the same chapter "So now, brethren, I commend you to God and to the word of His grace, which is able to build you up and give you an inheritance among all those were sanctified." All that the law could bring was death and condemnation. There is no glory and there is no faith in the law. Second Corinthians chapter 3 verses 6-15 clearly tell us the law was abolished and is no more. Colossians 2:14 and Ephesians 2:15 along with many other scriptures in the New Testament tell us the same thing. There is one message, one gospel that will build us up and give us an inheritance and that is the gospel of grace. It is a message of God's love and the finished work of Jesus at the cross of Calvary. That cannot be earned or merited but only received by faith.
To say the dispensation of grace we also mean the dispensation of the Holy Spirit. When we mix the law of Moses which was done away with the free gift of salvation by way of God's grace we discredit the work that Jesus did at Calvary and short-circuit the power of God in our life and through our life. When we mix the law of Moses with the gospel of grace we confuse well-meaning Christians, resurrect self and the old man and empower the defeated one and wear ourselves out trying to perfect ourselves from the outside rather than allowing God to perfect us from the inside. We frustrate the grace of God by adding our own efforts in trying to live for the Christ life that only the Holy Spirit can produce in us. Paul gave us strong warnings in the letter to the Galatians and told us not to preach anything but grace without the works of the law. He told us that there were consequences to going back to any part of the law especially as a means of justification. In Galatians 3:2 there is only one way to receive and minister the person and power of the Holy Spirit and that is by the hearing of faith. Faith in what or faith in who? It is faith in Jesus who is grace personified. It is faith in the finished work of Christ at the cross which is the message of grace. It is faith in the person of the Holy Spirit to continue to live His life through us to glorify the Lord Jesus. Chapter 3 and verse five of Galatians asks us how the Holy Spirit supplies us and works miracles among us. He adamantly tells us that it is by the hearing of faith and not by the works of the law. Can you see my friends that there is only one true freedom. There is only one way to live and experience and minister this great Christ life and that is by God's grace. It is the only true gospel. There is no other. I am convinced more than ever and forever grateful for this simple and true truth that Jesus paid it all and FREELY gave us all things. Romans 8: 32. I am convinced that there is one way to live above sin and that is by grace without the works of the law. Romans 6:14. I am convinced that there is only one way to reign in this life and that is by the abundance of grace and the gift of His righteousness. Romans 5: 17. And finally I am convinced that I am safe and secure for all eternity and sealed by his Holy Spirit as a guarantee that comes one way and one way only and that is believing and receiving this great gospel of God's grace. Ephesians 1:13-14.