"CHRIST SHALL PROFIT YOU NOTHING!"
A false gospel is not to be judged so when its errors reach a certain point, but in the fact that it contains any error at all! Doctrinal error is indicative of a false gospel. All false gospels take away from or add to what God says and all believers in such pockmarked messages scarred with error are lost. One of the clearest examples of how little it takes to besmirch God’s Gospel and change it into a lie is shown by Paul in his letter to the Galatians. "Behold, I Paul say unto you, that if ye be circumcised, CHRIST SHALL PROFIT YOU NOTHING" (Gal. 5:2). Paul made it clear to his hearers then, and it should be just as clear to his hearers now, that if a person turns to and relies upon anything that they have done in order to get saved and/or remain saved then Christ shall profit them nothing. It will be folly for them to call on the Lord Jesus, whose obedience alone saves, when they believe their own obedience to be an essential ingredient in their salvation. Any gospel that contains such doctrine is not from God and therefore cannot save. Paul does not say that Christ will forgive their error because they meant well or for their sincerity of heart, or because they believed in more true doctrines than false, but Paul makes it perfectly clear that Christ shall not profit them in the slightest. He cannot be called on as Savior by these people for they do not fully trust in Him. They can shout His name all they like; they can claim to be believers in grace and even know ‘Amazing Grace’ off by heart, but those who believe that any part of salvation is conditioned on anything a man must do, even those who claim that whatever it is they must do is only possible because of God’s bestowing the grace which enables them to do it, are abiders in a false gospel, a gospel which is not about grace but may be rightly termed a gospel of DIS-GRACE!!
Earlier in his letter, the apostle Paul left his readers with no doubt in their minds, and with nothing else to conclude, as to the state of those who would bring a gospel which differed in any way, to any degree, with what he had told them: "But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed" (Gal. 1:8,9). They were accursed people, and their gospels nothing but rank imitations, who believed in a gospel which strayed one hair’s breadth from the Gospel Paul had received from God. Paul’s succinct statements regarding what the Gospel was and what it was not shows the simple reasoning of the inspired apostle, that if what a person presented to the Galatians was not what he had told them, if they did not agree with Paul’s Gospel or claimed to be teaching it yet added to it or took away from it one jot or tittle, it would no longer be what God had told Paul and would therefore qualify as another gospel.
The strongest evidence for this, that even the smallest or slightest deviation from the truth, from what God has said in His Gospel, from the record that HE bears of HIS Son (1 Jn. 5:10), qualifies a person’s gospel as something other than God’s Gospel, is found further on in Paul’s letter in the following key verse: "A little leaven leaveneth the whole lump" (Gal. 5:9). Leaven, as seen in Matthew 16, is symbolical of teaching. "By leaven the Hebrews metaphorically understood whatever had the power of corrupting, whether doctrine, or example or anything else....Leaven is used in making bread. Its use is to pass through the flour, and cause it to ferment or to swell, and become light. It passes secretly, silently, but certainly." Paul warned that a little leaven will leaven the whole lump. The word little here comes from the Greek word mikros from which we get our word micro, meaning very small. This is proof positive that even the slightest error when it comes to the Gospel is enough to brand that message a false gospel. How could it not be so? For instance, if one has 4 toy blocks, the only way it can be said that they are the same is if they are exactly the same. If there are any differences between them, even the slightest scratch, then the most that can be said is that they are similar but it can never be said that they are the same. If there is anything different about a gospel, anything in it which differs from that great Gospel of God, it is a gospel that cannot save and God will not tolerate anyone who believes in anything that differs from His Gospel!! After all, isn’t salvation about believing what GOD has said and repenting of what man’s doctrines teach, of everything that contradicts what God has said? God does not stray from His truth, He does not change, nor has His message of how He saves changed. His message does not contain error of any size and so any message that does contain even the most minute error cannot be God’s Message, God’s Gospel. And those who believe in such messages cannot be said to be God’s people for how can it be said that they have been given justifying faith if they believe a false gospel, which is what justifying faith is sent to free God’s people from? You are never a Christian before the faith that comes from God, which believes only His Gospel and rejects all others, is given to you. How can faith in a false gospel be said to justify a man when it obviously could not have been given by God for it does not believe all that God has said?
But why is this so and how can we recognize a false gospel? Well, the reason even the slightest error when it comes to what the Gospel is, that is God’s plan for the salvation of His people, is that God’s Gospel is the only Gospel which bases salvation completely on grace, ie. upon nothing we do but solely on what He has done. Now one can begin to understand how the slightest variation, the slightest modification, of God’s Gospel can be easily seen and recognized and the significance of what it means to God’s grace-based plan. It may be asked, ‘But what is it which even in its smallest form can so distort the Gospel of God as to render it a perverted gospel of which He is not the Author and which is unable to save anyone? What is it that Paul is talking about when he speaks of a little leaven leavening the whole lump?’ The answer is a very simple one. God’s Gospel is a grace Gospel, it is a Gospel which conditions all of salvation—from beginning to final glory—upon His grace. Grace is what God has done, not what we do. Salvation is by grace through faith so that none may boast that they have done anything to get or remain saved. Grace is a gift, Faith is a gift and Salvation is a gift. "Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? Of works? NAY: but by the law of FAITH" (Rom. 3:27). This exclusion of all boasting on the part of man is concrete evidence that NO PART of salvation could possibly be conditioned on man! ONLY THE GOSPEL OF TOTAL GRACE EXCLUDES THE POSSIBILITY OF ANY MAN BOASTING IN SOMETHING HE HAS DONE—EVEN IF, LIKE THE PHARISEE (see Lk. 18:11-14), HE ATTRIBUTES HIS OBEDIENCE TO GOD. The grace of God is not about Him enabling us to do anything, but about Him doing EVERYTHING to save His people from their sins. Therefore salvation is not about us, it is not about what we must do, but what God has done to secure the salvation of His people. And so, the Savior, God’s Holy Servant sent to save those people God had elected before the foundation of the world, was sent to save those people not based on anything they did or that He would enable them to do for themselves, but by what He would do for them. Thus all boasting is excluded because salvation comes by grace through faith in the Savior’s Works. We conclude from this that that which strays from the first principal of grace—God doing for those who cannot do for themselves—is that leaven which the apostle talks about which corrupts the whole message of grace. A thing cannot be corrupted by itself, therefore grace cannot corrupt grace. It is that which is foreign to a thing which corrupts it and in the case of the grace of God, only the doctrine of the works of man can corrupt it. Grace and works are arch enemies, they cannot mix for the one cancels out the other. They are diametrically and eternally opposed. One exalts God alone and the other exalts only man. Therefore, any gospel which stipulates that any part of salvation is conditioned upon what a man does or what he must refrain from doing, leaves room for a man to boast. It is not a gospel of grace but a gospel of works. IF YOU BELIEVE THAT SALVATION DEPENDS IN ANY WAY TO ANY DEGREE UPON YOU, THEN THE GOSPEL YOU BELIEVE IN, HOWEVER MUCH ‘GRACE’ IT APPEARS TO CONTAIN, IS A GOSPEL OF WORKS. Election is according to nothing but grace "And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace..." (Rom. 11:6). You cannot have a grace and works Gospel. It is either one or the other. If it is conditioned on Christ and what He has done then it is the Gospel of grace, but if any part of it is in any way conditioned on what you do then it is a gospel of works and those who believe in such gospels are still in their sins. A gospel that declares any part of salvation to be dependant upon what a man must do is not the Gospel of grace which comes from God but is a gospel of works invented and believed by lost men. Grace and works are like oil and water in that they simply cannot mix. The above Scripture makes clear that if salvation relies upon a man’s works then it cannot be a salvation by grace and if salvation is of grace then you may put your mind at rest in the knowledge that no part of one’s salvation is, or was ever, based upon what you do. Salvation is not by grace and works, but is by grace alone. The satanic form of grace is that which the Pharisee in Luke 18, and all like him, had fallen for: God enabling the sinner to obey enough to contribute to his/her salvation. This form of grace does not exalt God but man, for it does not come from God. It is not all about God, but what God can do for you.
What Paul was saying in the context of Galatians 5 was that even if the Galatians claimed to believe the Gospel of God’s grace yet added, for instance, something as seemingly benign as the doctrine which teaches circumcision as a necessary rite that had to be performed in order for a man to be or remain saved, the Gospel of grace would be perverted, their hearts would belong to another gospel, and Christ would profit them nothing: "Behold, I Paul say unto you, that if ye be circumcised, Christ shall profit you NOTHING" (Gal. 5:2). NOT A LITTLE, mind you, BUT NOTHING!! This shows clearly that even if a person claimed to believe the Gospel, all the right doctrines, yet added anything to it, the true Christ of the true Gospel would be of no advantage to them. Any error added to truth makes it an untruth, so, too, any work added to grace makes it ‘un-grace’, or non-grace, not something undeserved but something God would be obligated to provide.
An appeal by such people to Christ and what He did on the cross will fall on deaf ears for they have turned their heads and hearts to something outside of, and in addition to, what Christ has done, thereby revealing a lack of confidence in the efficaciousness of Christ and what He has done to save, or an ignorance of Him as complete Savior and the sufficiency of His imputed Righteousness to save. Scripture says that the Righteousness that saves is obtainable only by faith in that Righteousness, in what Christ has done and not by what we do. Those who are ignorant of this Righteousness have no option and therefore feel compelled to go about, as the Jews did in Romans 10, to establish their own righteousness, which is what a person does when they consider any part of salvation to be conditioned on what they do. They "...have not submitted themselves unto the Righteousness of God" (Rom. 10:3) which comes by grace through faith and not works, lest any man should boast (see Eph. 2:8,9). This absence of trust in, or ignorance of, the Savior’s Work is so pronounced, it is such a corruptive influence, that it tries to tempt Paul’s hearers to return to the mind-set that is common to every man by nature, which instructs them to look to what they do to obtain or to ensure the completeness of their salvation. One cannot dare to claim to be saved by grace if one believes one has contributed by some act of personal obedience to their ‘salvation’. This is not some minor issue that needs correcting in those that are saved, but is a life and death issue. It is something that needs to be purged from the lost man, not corrected in the saved man, for no saved man could possibly believe such a deadly error. As we shall see later, it is not by a man’s deeds of the law that he is saved, but by Christ’s deeds performed on behalf of the man.
A dependence upon anything outside of Christ, including any degree of self-reliance to secure or ensure one’s salvation, "...AMOUNTS TO A REJECTION OF THE SAVIOR, AND OF THE DOCTRINE OF JUSTIFICATION BY HIM". If you add anything to Christ then you erase Christ from the equation and He will profit you nothing. Anything you add to Christ always blocks out Christ, it obscures a right view of the true Christ leaving only oneself in the picture. Christ profits them nothing who believe in anything apart from, less than, or in addition to, what He has done as that which is necessary to save. This, however, does not mean that all those who believe in such lies reject all of Christianity, that they abhor all the doctrine of Christ. False gospels are made up of many truths. There is almost no end to the subtleties of Satan and his ‘greatest’ work of perversion, that thing which has deceived more people than anything Evolution, Atheism, Agnosticism or any overtly anti-Christian philosophy or religion could conjure up—the lie—which stems from Satan’s original lie to Eve in the Garden that she would not surely die (spiritually as well as physically), that man must do, in turn giving birth to the lie that he CAN do, something which will result in his salvation. What Paul is talking about is the conditioning of any part of salvation, thus believing there is a need for a man to add his obedience, on something he has to do, to make even ‘more perfect’ what Christ has done to secure the salvation of His people. Those who truly believe in grace are content with what Christ has done and those who believe they must do something too are malcontents—discontent and unsatisfied with the Savior God has provided. If you believe you must do something to secure or maintain a state of justification before God, then you are a subscriber to, and promoter of, the lie that dares say that Who Christ is and what He has done is not enough to save anyone. Significantly, if you are of the opinion that anyone who believes in a gospel that says man must choose God, thereby conditioning salvation ultimately upon a free will decision on the part of man, you are as lost as anyone can be for you deny Christ by insisting that a person can believe a works-based gospel whose savior shares the glory for salvation with man, and be saved regardless. There are more ways to deny Christ than the obvious. However subtle they may be they are nonetheless very real and very deadly!
Paul was saying to the Galatians in chapter 5 that they could claim Christ all they wanted to, call out to Him, ‘defend’ His name, do all sorts of wonderful works in His name and even cast out devils, but if they added circumcision, something they did, as essential to salvation, to God’s Gospel of grace, then it was another gospel. It was not the Gospel of grace but a gospel of works they had turned to, abandoning his and showing that they had never savingly believed it, FOR THEY KEPT LOOKING TO THEMSELVES FOR THAT ULTIMATE ASSURANCE! A gospel that conditions any part of salvation on a man doing something does not reveal that liberty wherewith Christ makes His people free, but rather a yoke of bondage (see Gal. 5:1). Paul also told the Galatians, "...if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain" (Gal. 2:21). The gospel that conditions any part of salvation on a work of obedience performed by man is a gospel that declares righteousness comes by that obedience, or is dependant upon that obedience, and therefore says that Christ died needlessly, that He need not have laid down His life, for the righteousness that saves a man comes by his own obedience and needed not to be supplied by a Savior. Contrary to all this, the Scriptures say that righteousness comes by grace through faith in Jesus Christ and so any individual adherence to the law, believing that it will contribute to one’s salvation, is that which is IN VAIN! If anyone could be saved or sustain their salvation by what they did, surely at the head of that list would be the apostle himself. Yet Paul shows in Philippians 3:4-10 how he counts all things (all that he was and did) as loss "...for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord....and be found in Him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith" (Phil. 3:8,9).
Can you see that Paul is not dealing with the Galatians’ ‘good intentions’ or sincerity of belief, but with the cold hard fact that if they looked to anything other than Christ and His Gospel as that which saves, then whether they believed it or not, whether they were aware of it or not, they held to another gospel, which cannot save? Only Paul’s Gospel demands that a person wholly trust in Christ for their salvation. That they wholly trust in the work of Christ because of the grace of God. Only Paul’s Gospel demands complete abandonment of what we can do and complete reliance upon what God has done to save His people AND keep them saved. What the Galatians were being taught was a gospel that claimed to exalt Christ and yet included circumcision as part of, therefore essential to, God’s great plan of salvation. To exalt Christ one must believe His Gospel which conditions all of salvation on Him and that justifying righteousness is through belief in what He has done, not in anything that we must do. For a person to be circumcised in order to ensure or secure their salvation, they must first have been taught such a thing and then believed in this false doctrine that was part of a false gospel, which dared add this religious work to the glorious Grace Gospel of God. Those who taught, and who even today continue to teach, such things—adding anything to the Gospel message, or modifying it in any way—in particular those who say that Christ’s obedience must be supplemented by the personal obedience of each individual He died for, may not overtly deny any particular doctrine of the Gospel, or even be aware that they are, but by adding to it, by conditioning any part of salvation on what a man must do, they affect the whole and Christ shall profit them absolutely nothing. Reliance upon one’s own works instead of, or in addition to, what Christ has done is a rejection, it is a disapproval of the Gospel that declares "...His Righteousness for the remission of sins..." (Rom. 3:25) and "...that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law" (Rom. 3:28). Just about every gospel out there that conditions salvation to some degree on what a man does is called a gospel of grace and is never termed a gospel of works. The ‘grace’ such promoters of false gospels are talking about is really a thin veneer—the superficial and pleasant appearance—behind which lies the backing material of works. Their interpretation of grace is: God enabling a man to do in order to fulfil the conditions upon which they claim their salvation is based. God’s grace is not that which enables a man to obey certain conditions of salvation but it is God doing everything to fulfill every demand of His law and justice. "...so by the obedience of ONE shall many be made righteous" (Rom. 5:19). It stands as an eternal mystery why so many, who claim to believe in a gospel that gives God all the glory, refuse to believe that there is nothing they must do, no obedience they are to offer to God, in order to put a seal to their ‘salvation’.
Christ is the Savior. And, if you believe that what He has done to save and keep saved all those for whom He died must be supplemented by something you do, some law you must obey, then you will always be looking to yourself and what you do to have that ‘assurance’ of salvation. REAL ASSURANCE IS FOUND ONLY IN CHRIST, AND ALL HIS PEOPLE ARE CONTENT WITH HIM FOR THEY KNOW THEY ARE "COMPLETE IN HIM" (Col. 2:10).
The Scripture says that "...by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in His sight..." (Rom. 3:20). This justification, which no obedience to the law of God on man’s part can ever attain to, is that which makes a man just before God AND KEEPS HIM THAT WAY FOR EVER!!! The righteousness which is of God, the only righteousness which saves, is "without the law" (Rom. 3:21). In other words, the righteousness by which a man is saved or justified cannot come, it is not attainable, by man’s deeds of the law even if he says God helped him perform those deeds, but only "by faith of Jesus Christ (in HIS deeds of the law)...For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God" (Rom. 3:22,23). This is what salvation is all about isn’t it? WHAT THE SAVIOR HAS DONE FOR THE SINNER!! Romans 4:6 describes "...the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth righteousness WITHOUT WORKS." GOD DOES NOT NEED YOUR OBEDIENCE TO SAVE YOU!! God justifies, He places a man in right standing with Him, not according to anything the man has done but according to everything God alone has done (2 Tim. 1:9).
The fact that all have sinned precludes every last man from being able, by his own obedience, to gain or maintain a state of justification before God, for in everything a man does he always falls short of the glory of God and therefore of His approval. Men may appear righteous in the sight of other men, but none are righteous in God’s sight by what they do, only by what Christ has done. The reason why "...there shall no flesh be justified in His sight" is the fact that "...by the law is the knowledge of sin" (Rom. 3:20). "Law is a rule of action. The effect of applying a rule to our conduct is to show us what sin is (not how righteous we are). The meaning of the apostle clearly is, that the application of a law to try our conduct, instead of being a ground of justification, will be merely to show us our own sinfulness and departures from duty....so far from being justified by it, they would be more and more condemned." The saved are "...justified freely by His grace (not by their works) through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus" (Rom. 3:24). Christ’s Righteousness does not only get a man saved, but what so many who profess to know Him have overlooked is the fact that His Righteousness is also what keeps a man saved. A man’s salvation is ALL due to Christ, "Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in His blood, to declare HIS righteousness for the remission of sins....that He might be Just, and the Justifier of him which believeth in Jesus" (Rom. 3:25,26).
So many who claim to believe in the Gospel of Grace think that to be saved, to be justified, is a one-off thing and for the saved, justified state to be perpetuated or held on to, one must maintain a certain level of personal obedience. While obedience is important in the believer’s life, it is not a condition upon which salvation is based. Paul, bewildered, asked the Galatians, "Are ye so foolish? Having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh? (Gal. 3:3). Such people fail to realise that to be saved is to be kept, it is to be preserved and protected from loss. Every bit of salvation, every bit of justification, is due to and because of Jesus Christ: Who He is and what He has done. Every bit of salvation is because of His obedience and not a bit of it is conditioned on your feeble attempts at obedience. This Savior came to the earth to save His people from their sins because of the grace and purpose of God. How ridiculous would it be for Christ to have come to the earth to get His people saved from their sins knowing they would all fritter away their salvation because of their inability and incompetence to remain saved by anything they did or could do! An inability Christ knew would never and could never sustain the justified state He had placed them in!
"Christ did it all", you say? "Christ is my all in all", you say? Then why do you think that any part of salvation is conditioned on you? Or why do you think that a person who believes such an abomination is saved as well as the one who rightly rejects it? And you who claim to now believe in the doctrines of grace, why do you insist that you were saved whilst believing such junk? IF CHRIST DID IT ALL, THEN WHAT IS THERE LEFT FOR YOU TO DO?? If you claim Christ is your all in all then why are you believing in a gospel that conditions your salvation, even to the smallest degree, not exclusively and solely on what Christ has done, but also on what you do? HOW CAN ANYONE BE SAVED BELIEVING IN A GOSPEL THAT IS NOT TOTALLY, COMPLETELY, AND ABSOLUTELY, CONDITIONED ON GRACE? If you want Christ to be your Savior, if you dare to mention His name and think to call out to Him, "HE IS TO BE A WHOLE SAVIOR. No one is to share with Him in the honor of saving men; and no rite, no custom, no observance of law, is to divide the honor with His death". By changing even the smallest detail of the Gospel of grace, one does away with what God has said is required for salvation, replacing it with one’s own version of what God has said. It is like adding the smallest mark to a beautifully painted white wall. No matter how small the mark, it has spoilt the purity of the whiteness, and the wall can no longer be considered purely white. One’s eyes will virtually always be drawn to the blemish. All that is required to blemish, nay totally do away with, the Gospel of grace is one single work of man’s. How can all of salvation be all of grace—all of God—if any part of it conditioned on what a man must do?
You see, the Message, or Gospel, of God is so perfect, so pure, so absolutely excellent, that once you change any part of it or fail to believe any part of it, you are left with another gospel and not that Holy Gospel of God. If you believe one doctrine of the Gospel of God you must believe them all in order to truly believe His Gospel, for to not believe it all is to believe in things that contradict it. TO NOT BELIEVE IT ALL IS TO NOT BELIEVE IN GRACE! If you do not believe in God’s Gospel of grace, which conditions NO part of salvation on man but ALL of it upon the Person and Work of the One Who was sent to save, the Lord Jesus Christ, you cannot be saved. If it is not ALL Him it is not ALL grace and can only be a gospel of works. You cannot spoil grace by adding grace to it for it is already grace and the Gospel of grace is perfect and complete. That which spoils, in fact cancels out, grace is called works even if it is claimed that God’s grace is necessary to perform it. A gospel of works is a gospel that contains a mixture of some of God’s doctrines and some of man’s doctrines. If you go beyond the Gospel or fall short of it, if you abide in that which falls either side of what God has said, then you cannot have the Gospel of grace for your faith is found to not be within its boundaries. This is why, when there is error concerning the preaching of the Gospel, such erroneous teaching is termed another gospel and is not for a moment to be considered, as we see from Paul’s writings, God’s Gospel, and therefore as able to save. This is also what lies behind the reasoning in such verses as Proverbs 30:6: "Add thou not unto His words, lest He reprove thee, and thou be found a liar" (cf. Rev. 22:18). You cannot add grace to grace; you cannot make God’s Gospel of grace any more gracious than what it already is. The only way one can add to God’s Gospel of grace is by conditioning any part of it upon a work of man’s. Anything added to what God has already said is His Gospel changes the message into a different gospel, just like adding even the smallest fraction to a correct answer to a mathematical equation changes that answer from being the right one to one of a multitude of wrong ones. For example, 2 + 2 = 4, but if you change that answer ever so slightly by saying that 2 + 2 equals 4¼, you no longer have the truth but are left with a lie. Even though your answer may contain the truth, what you add to it changes the whole into a lie, an untruth. The most successful lies are not completely made up of untruths but contain mostly truth.
THE INDISPENSABLE LINK BETWEEN MAN AND SALVATION IS GOD’S ONLY GOSPEL!! No other gospel can bring or hold the two together. God has only one answer to man’s sin dilemma and it is revealed only in His Gospel of grace. A gospel preached and believed in that is not God’s Gospel is a denial of God’s Gospel, it is a rebellion against God’s Gospel whether it is intended to be or not, and those who harbour such doctrines do in fact replace the true Gospel with what Paul called another gospel, another message, another plan of salvation, that is NOT God’s plan, NOT God’s Message, NOT God’s Gospel. All man has, in his natural state, is his version, GOD HAS THE TRUTH! All false gospels are merely pale imitations of the true one. A FALSE GOSPEL IS A LOST MAN’S TRUTH. All false gospels are anti-Gospel, for they are preached in its stead and are therefore against it. All false gospels are perversions of the true Gospel and all who preach and believe a perverted gospel have a perverted view of God, and therefore a wrong view about how He saves. They are not true Christians but are themselves perverted versions who trust in a different plan of salvation than the one God has revealed in His Gospel. Their hope is in something other than what God has said and is utter vanity. False gospels are man’s attempts at outlining a plan of salvation and they are all miserable failures, for they have never saved anybody. Even one erroneous teaching, one false doctrine, added to the truth affects all of the right doctrines, just like a little leaven will always leaven the whole lump of dough. Though there are many similarities among people, no two can be said to be exactly the same in thought or conduct. Every person is a unique individual. So, too, with gospels. Though false gospels may have some similarities, in some cases many similarities, to the true Gospel, not one of them can be said to be exactly the same and therefore we are left with only ONE that can save: GOD’S ONLY GOSPEL!!
Just one false teaching will affect the true Gospel doctrines and leave you without God’s Word on the matter. Dough is no longer purely dough if anything is added to it. Here is the essence of what Paul was trying to establish in the minds of those believers in Galatia. Once you have changed the ingredients of the Gospel by either leaving some of them out or by adding to them or perverting them in any way, you no longer have THE GOSPEL but ANOTHER gospel, which is not that message, not that recipe, for salvation which God has specified in HIS Gospel. To corrupt is to render a thing "...meaningless or different in meaning from the original by scribal errors or alterations". False gospels are all meaningless nonsense for they differ from the original and only Gospel that saves. Remember, only a little leaven is needed to leaven the entire lump! Even one work which is said must be performed by man to either get saved or remain ‘saved’ frustrates the grace of God. The apostle Paul said that he did not frustrate, or nullify, the grace of God by teaching that righteousness could come, or be sustained, by personal obedience, for this would then mean that Christ, the only one whose obedience makes righteous and keeps righteous, had died in vain (see Gal. 2:21). Just one part of salvation conditioned on what a man must do rules out any claim for the gospel which teaches such a thing to be the Gospel of grace. "Erroneous doctrines are like leaven in the following respects: (1) They are, at first, slight and unimportant in appearance. (2) They are insinuated into the soul unawares and silently, and are difficult of detection. (3) They are gradual (4) They act most certainly. (5) They will pervade all the soul, and bring in all the faculties under their control." A gospel which says man must perform a work, even if it is vehemently insisted upon that the only way a man can perform the work is by the grace of God, is a gospel of works not grace. To all who believe in such gospels there is only one thing left to say: "Christ shall profit you NOTHING!"