Monday, May 13, 2024

Will the real Radical Grace Gospel please stand up: Discerning truth and error

 For the Law was given through Moses, but grace [the unearned, undeserved favor of God] and truth came through Jesus Christ. John 1:17 AMP

... By this we know (recognize) the Spirit of Truth and the spirit of error. 1 John 4:6b AMPC

 The Gospel is Good News. God has restored the simple truth of the Gospel within the last 20 years. The "Grace message" can be summed up as Jesus at the center of it all. Grace reveals all that Jesus has accomplished and freely provides for us in the Finished Work.

 The enemy tries to steal the Word when truth is restored and revealed afresh.  One way he does this is by perverting truth and promoting error. If truth is overshadowed by the counterfeit, by error, it is diminished in its effectiveness to reach people and transform them.

 Nothing new is under the sun. Grace has always been the Gospel. God's Love has always been unconditional and freely received. Receiving salvation and a new life has always been by Grace through Faith. Simply believing in Jesus has always been the way to the Father.

 What else is not new is the erroneous concepts of universalism, inclusionism, and ultimate reconciliation. The enemy satan has always tried to subvert the Gospel. Legalism and works-driven messages were one way he had hidden the Gospel. 

 Works and performance-based theologies hinder evangelism because the lost believe the Christian life is too hard. They see their failures and know they can't measure up so why try they conclude. Still, mixed messaging has some success in reaching the lost. 

 The enemy conjured up a more sinister scheme. If he can convince the lost they aren't actually lost, they won't come to Christ and receive salvation. If he can convince the lost that there is postmortem salvation available he knows people will live a life never considering God and the Gospel. 

 Enter the ancient lies of inclusionism, trinitarian theology inclusionism, ultimate reconciliation, and universalism. Proponents of these errors point to early voices who proclaimed some of these sentiments as proof of their truth. Error spoken is still an error no matter how ancient it is. 

 Something to consider is that these views are not Christianity. Just as Mormonism and Jehovah's Witnesses claim portions of the Bible prove their views they also create their own source material and rely heavily on those, such as The Book of Mormon and the Jehovah's Witnesses' New World translation. So it is with the inclusion/universalist groups. They rely on the Mirror Bible, the writings from Grace Communion International, and various books and talks given by its proponents.

 These views are not Christianity and they are promoting a different gospel. In truth, they are promoting a doctrine of devils. Twisting and misapplying Scripture and rewriting a portion of the Scriptures to fit a narrative is not the work of the Spirit. 

 These groups use subtle tactics to try to disprove the truth that mankind apart from Christ is lost. They go so far as to push the idea that no one was ever lost, that it was all a wrong belief mankind adopted. To promote this error, they misapply misinterpret, and misrepresent Colossians 1:21 from the KJV

 This passage is not claiming no one was ever lost. This passage indeed says the exact opposite;

This includes you who were once far away from God. You were his enemies, separated from him by your evil thoughts and actions.  Colossians 1:21 NLT

 Because we were all lost and needed a Savior Christ came and paid the price for whosoever will receive. Because of the great need, God provided an even greater answer. He has provided a way to eternal life apart from works, performance, or behavior. He provided the way of Grace through Faith.

 These groups also claim all humanity is saved or will be saved post-mortem. They say Jesus paying the price for all equates to Him redeeming and saving all. Redemption, salvation, and Righteousness are already purchased at Calvary. For one to be redeemed, saved, and be made Righteous, they must believe.

 Salvation is not an invasion of the will. Salvation must be received. Look at what Grace really does;

We have cause to celebrate because the grace of God has appeared, offering the gift of salvation to all people. Titus 2:11 VOICE

 Grace appears to all mankind and offers them new life in Christ. This is not "automatic." Romans 5 declares those who receive abundant Grace and the gift of Righteousness reign in life. Receive is the optimal word. We have to lay hold of it by Faith it is not "automatic." 

 The notion that all humanity is righteous but doesn't know it is contrary to clear Scripture. We are only Righteous by Faith. No one is righteous apart from Christ. There is no secret righteousness indwelling the lost unbelieving one. Those who say all are righteous apart from faith are echoing the spirit of error and not the spirit of truth.

to demonstrate at the present time His righteousness, that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus. Romans 3:26 NKJV

For Christ is the end of the law, so now there is righteousness for everyone who believes. Romans 10:4 MOUNCE

 We were not saved before we believed. Those proclaiming inclusion/universalism state believing is a work or some kind of legalistic ritual or performance. They twist words in Scripture and claim we are not saved by personal acceptance and trusting Christ alone but saved by Jesus' faith. 

 They believe God overrides free will, bypasses personal desire, invades the heart, and claims it as His own. This is not love in action. This is forced fellowship, compulsory relationship, and a seized spirit. Again none of this is voluntary. This is a non-consensual relationship with humanity. Somehow the proponents claim this is true grace and true love. Overriding one's decision, forcing oneself upon another, and seizing their heart is love in their mind. That sounds more like the work of the enemy and not a loving Father.

  He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.” John 3:36 

 Truly, truly I say to you, whoever believes in Me has eternal life. John 6:47 MEV

To him all the prophets bear witness, that everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through · his name.” Acts 10:43 MOUNCE (Forgiveness needs to be received).

 For with the heart a person believes and is made righteous, and with the mouth he confesses and is saved. Romans 10:10 MOUNCE

 The Grace Gospel of Jesus is not a message that all are saved. It is not a message that all humanity is righteous, has the Holy Spirit indwelling them, is adopted into the Family, and is born again apart from believing and trusting in Jesus. The Grace message doesn't proclaim there is salvation after death. There is no Biblical passage promoting this. 

 The message of universalism, inclusion/trinitarian theology inclusion, and ultimate reconciliation is false teaching created by the enemy. It is not Christianity, it is not Biblical and in opposition to the Gospel. It is truly a doctrine of devils, and it comes to steal and kill and destroy. It robs people of hearing the Gospel and kills and destroys ministries and churches promoting this error. 

 Those following these doctrine of devils, also adhere to the notion there is no future judgment. That hell is non-existent or simply a fantasy in Christian's minds. Hell exists and those who reject the Gospel of Grace choose to go there. God doesn't send anyone to hell.

 The lost are headed to an eternity separated from the Father. This is why the Grace Gospel must be proclaimed. Now judgment and eternal separation are not the Gospel message. They only serve to remind us of the urgency of the Gospel proclamation. 

 In summation, the real Radical Grace Gospel must be proclaimed error-free. The Gospel of Grace is the Good News. God is not mad and the price for the forgiveness of all sins, and redemption has been paid for by Jesus. Righteousness, forgiveness, and redemption are all received by Grace through Faith. Grace is the Gospel. Radical Grace is the error-free Gospel of Jesus Christ.



Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

Tuesday, May 7, 2024

Redeemed from the…Blessing?


  But now He has obtained a more excellent ministry, inasmuch as He is also Mediator of a better covenant, which was established on better promises...
In that He says, “A new covenant,” He has made the first obsolete. Now what is becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to vanish away. Hebrews 8:6, 13 NKJV

God speaks of these new promises, of this new agreement, as taking the place of the old one; for the old one is out of date now and has been put aside forever. Hebrews 8:13 TLB

 I have good news to share. The New Covenant has come. God has instituted a new and better Covenant. The Old Covenant has been fulfilled and now is done away. We have a new and living way to God.

 The Gospel of Grace is the Good News of Grace pledged in and through the Lord Jesus Christ. The Work is Finished and the Father has fully accepted the redemptive work of Christ. There is nothing we can add or do to complete the work in our lives. All He asks is that we believe. 

 This is the Good News of Grace. Grace has been revealed with the revelation Paul proclaimed in the Scriptures. Some still can't see the message of Grace. This is why God restores the truth from generation to generation whenever it gets lost through man's tradition. 

 Whenever God restores truth, He raises up teachers to explain the truth. When the truth is proclaimed and explained, it falls upon hearers in different stages of spiritual growth: new, older, and mature believers. Now spiritual immaturity is not necessarily a bad thing, we are still growing.

 Spiritual immaturity can be detrimental however when the immature hear the truth but don't fully understand the truth. Some only hear a portion of the truth and end up in a proverbial ditch. We need to hear the truth but also need to understand it for it to benefit our lives.

 When a spiritually immature person hears just a portion of the truth of Faith or divine healing or Faith's confession, and don't understand it, they make foolish decisions such as quitting their job, refusing medical care, or denying their circumstances mistakenly believing they're acting in Faith. Grace is no different. When the immature hear a portion of Grace they begin to misunderstand Redemption and how to rightly divide the Word of God.

  How does the spiritually immature misunderstand redemption? How do they wrongly divide the Word? They misunderstand what it is we have been redeemed from. They don't understand how to rightly divide the Word, distinguishing between the Old Covenant and New Covenant. 

 We are redeemed from the curse of the Law. We are not under Law but Grace. We are not under the statutes and precepts of the Mosaic Law. We don't approach God the same way they did under the Old. Now religious tradition likes to cite Old Covenant passages about how to receive the blessing of God. The problem is that's the Old Covenant's standard of how to receive. 

 That's not how we receive in the New. Under Grace, we receive from God by Grace through Faith. Under Grace, we rest in Jesus' perfect obedience. We come to the Father based on Christ's perfection, not our own. Our hope and Faith to receive is Faith in His Faith and Finished Work not our own. 

 Understanding Christ met all the requirements on our behalf then we know we are now prequalified for all the blessings and benefits God has promised and provided for us. This begs the question which blessings are we prequalified to receive? Are we only promised what God declared in Acts through Revelation? 

 What about all the promises of provision, peace, protection, and prosperity found in the Bible from Genesis to Revelation? Are we limited to what Peter and Paul and James and John wrote? That is if a promise of provision or blessing is found in the Psalms or Isaiah does that mean it's not for us? Some who misunderstand Grace are teaching that yes they are not for us.

 Has Grace then redeemed us from the curse of the Law and the blessings? Some spiritually immature ones claim that looking at the promises and provisions found in the Old Testament means you are putting yourself back under the Law. This is simply not true. 

 Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the Law, not the blessings. Look at David's words in Psalm 35. God takes pleasure in the prosperity of His servant. God derives pleasure when His servants experience nothing missing or lacking in their lives. If God takes pleasure in His servant's prosperity how much more in His beloved sons? Christ's Redemptive work didn't "redeem" us from this blessing! In fact, His work purchased it for us!

 Look at Psalm 91. We see promises of protection and long life. Does this passage mean this is only for those under the Law? Of course not. Under Grace, this provision of protection and long life is more sure because it's purchased by Christ. 

 Look at Isaiah 49. If God our Father won't forget His servants and has them engraved in His palm how much more His children? There are many many promises and provisions and blessings found in the Old Testament. They are not solely for "the Jews." 

 The provisions and blessings of the Old are for us in Christ today. We are not redeemed from them. We aren't placing ourselves under the Mosaic Law by claiming these provisions and promises. We are simply receiving the full salvation package.

 All Scripture is breathed out by God and is profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correcting, for training · in righteousness, so that the man of God may be proficient, fully equipped for every good work. 2 Timothy 3:16-17 MOUNCE

  All the blessings, benefits, provisions, and profits from the Old are now ours through Christ. We are in a better Covenant established on better promises. If the New does not include at least the same level of prosperity, peace and provision as the Old how then is it better? 

 The New has better promises than the Old. One of the better aspects of the New versus the Old is how these promises are made available to us. Under the Old, we had to do, we had to obey perfectly, we had to perform to receive. In the New, Christ has already done enough. Christ has already obeyed flawlessly. He has performed perfectly on our behalf. Our basis for receiving all these blessings is Christ never our behavior, our performance, our good deeds, or charity. 

  In summation, when Christ freed us from the Law, He didn't redeem us from the blessings found in every book of the Bible. Provisions of peace, long life, healing, protection, favor, fullness of joy, and strength are ours in Christ. We have the fullness of life, prosperity, and wholeness, in Christ Jesus. We are not just blessed, we are the commanded blessed because of Jesus!



Image by ariesjay castillo from Pixabay

Wednesday, May 1, 2024

Holy Communion: Even more truth vs traditions

 24 When He had given thanks, He broke it and said, “Take and eat. This is My body which is broken for you. Do this in remembrance of Me.” 25 In the same manner He took the cup after He had supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me.” 26 As often as you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until He comes. 1 Corinthians 11:24-26 MEV

 The Church was given two "ordinances" that we as believers observe. Now we understand these have nothing to do with our salvation or earning something from God our Father. Man on the other hand has tried their hardest to turn these into traditions that they can war over.

 These two ordinances are water baptism and Holy Communion. People have engaged in small wars over how one is baptized and how they receive Communion. Brothers and Sisters this should never be. 

 Water baptism is simply an outward demonstration of what has already occurred inwardly. We were dead in our sins, but when we first trusted in Christ alone, we were made alive forever. Going under simply demonstrates that the old is gone, "Buried" and the New has arisen. Take note this is only done once, why? Because eternal life is eternal, once and for all. Baptism is a one-time act and has nothing to do with our standing with God or our salvation.

 Holy Communion is observed as Jesus instructed. As often as you do this, do this in remembrance of Me. He didn't say how often to do it. He didn't say this has anything to do with receiving salvation or losing it. He simply gave us a meal that brings Christ's Finished Work to our remembrance. 

  Jesus' work of Redemption is illustrated in the Communion elements. The wine and bread illustrate His blood shed for us and His body broken on our behalf. He said to partake in remembrance of Him. Yet religious tradition has told us not to put Him in remembrance but rather our flaws and failures and many sinful shortcomings in remembrance. Jesus said to reflect on Him, and what He accomplished, but man says no, reflect, consider, remember your sins, and search for any you may have missed.

 Paul gives instructions concerning Holy Communion in the Epistle to the Corinthians. Again understand the context of the first Epistle to the Corinthians. The one-word summation for the Church at Corinth is excess. 

To them, Holy Communion was just an opportunity to have a feast. They would have a full spread of food and drink. They would indulge themselves in the food and wine. Some would eat and not leave some for the poorer saints among them. Still others would get drunk on Communion wine. This is the reason for Paul's instructions.

 We have already seen that examining ourselves and partaking unworthily has nothing to do with searching our hearts and lives for some areas in which we are failing. We are examining if we are partaking worthily and not unworthily. Partaking unworthily doesn't mean partaking with some unconfessed sin in our life.  

We partake unworthily when we receive communion as just some common meal or take it for granted and dishonor and disregard the Finished Work. This is what the Corinthians were doing. They simply served a regular meal and called it having the Lord's supper, 

 This is where Paul used the word judgment in connection to partaking of Communion. These two phrases "examine yourself" and "judge yourself" are the phrases that are lifted from their context and used to condemn and scare God's people concerning Holy Communion. To allay the traditions of men we must remember the words of Jesus. 

I tell you the solemn truth, the one who hears · my message and believes the one who sent me has eternal life and will not come into judgment, but has passed from · death to · life. John 5:24 MOUNCE

26 As they were eating, Jesus took some bread. He offered a blessing over the bread, and then He broke it and gave it to His disciples. Jesus: Take this and eat; it is My body. 27 And then He took the cup of wine, He made a blessing over it, and He passed it around the table. Jesus: Take this and drink, all of you: 28 this is My blood of the new covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. Matthew 26:26-28 VOICE

 Jesus has already told us that the Holy Communion represents the forgiveness of our sins. He already said we will never be judged again when we believe in Him. So this begs the question what is Paul speaking of then? Judge yourself and you won't be judged?

 We see in context what Paul is saying. If you simply have a church "potluck" or "cookout" or a "dinner" and because there is wine or juice, and bread present you can't claim you have partaken of the Lord's Supper. Having a meal only fills your belly and makes you reflect on how tasty those breadsticks were and how flavorful that juice was.

 Having a meal at their gatherings wasn't causing them to think of Jesus. The bread served didn't make them trust in Christ's body broken for their healing and wholeness and provision. The wine didn't cause them to be thankful for Christ's blood shed for their eternal forgiveness and for making them Righteous.

 What does it mean to judge yourself then? The word judge means to make a separation, a distinction. We are making a distinction that this meal is a divine illustration of the Finished Work and not simply bread and wine. If we see it as a simple meal like any other, we are not discerning or seeing Jesus' redemptive work. The taking judgment on oneself then is receiving the "judgment" of the fallen creation. It's not seeing Jesus as the way of escape from this fallen creation and simply accepting the fall as part of normal life. 

 This is what Paul was speaking of. We live in a fallen and fractured creation. Disasters, disease, and premature death abound in a fallen world. This is the judgment of sin seen in creation. When Jesus returns total redemption will fully manifest. This is what Paul was speaking about when he said if we partake unworthily we are taking judgment upon ourselves. 

 Holy Communion is the meal that heals. It is the perfect illustration of Jesus' Redemptive work. When we partake of Communion we are reminding ourselves of Jesus' body that was broken on our behalf procuring healing, wholeness, provision, and deliverance. We are putting into remembrance His shed blood cleansed us once and for all time and we are now forgiven forever. Condemnation, guilt, and shame will not oppress our thinking and self-image because we know we are forgiven and accepted and approved and Righteous because of the Blood. 

 Judging ourselves then has nothing to do with self-introspection to see how far we have fallen. We judge ourselves to be partaken of Holy Communion worthily. We judge ourselves to not be enjoying a natural meal. We are partaking of Holy Communion.

 Now Paul does say if we judge ourselves or are discerning the Lord's body we won't be judged. This statement is not a warning concerning a loss of salvation or God punishing us. The New Covenant is clear about that. Paul said the judgment comes to correct us. Instruction and correction are not punishment and not a loss of salvation.

 In summation, we need to celebrate the Lord's Supper. Holy Communion is a time to reflect on Jesus. It's a time to ponder Grace. It's a time to honor the Finished Work. It's not a time to be sad but to be thankful and joyous. We must relinquish the traditions of man and embrace the truth of the Word. We must embrace the truth about Communion and allay tradition and give it no place in our lives. Reflect on Grace. Remember Jesus.


Image by PublicDomainPictures from Pixabay