HOW MANY GOSPELS? (part 2)

 

 

Anyone can come up to you and declare that 5 inches is a certain length. One person may say it is so long and another may say it is shorter or longer than the original estimate. The only way you can be sure as to which person is correct in their estimation is not by adding your own opinion to the mix, which would also be based on nothing but what your appraisal of how long 5 inches is, but by obtaining a ruler or tape measure—which is THE RIGHT AND PROPER STANDARD, THE RULE—and measuring the distance, which only this instrument of precision can reliably gauge. Differing views about distance will always exist and foolish men may argue their point but once the standard is found, once the precise instrument of measurement is produced, the arguments, at least from wise men, will cease and their estimate of how long a certain distance is will forever conform with that of the standard. Have you ever seen anyone argue with the standard? Have you ever seen men arguing and doubting the correctness of a tape measure who were considered wise and reasonable? The tape measure ends all arguments and only fools will not comply with it and reject all previous estimates. Tape measures are not made based on men’s opinions of how much space there should be between each mark, they are stamped out according to the proper universal standard of how much space should be between each mark. They are mathematically accurate and not mere guess work. They are reliable and accepted as the standard by which we judge distance, and are used by builder and architect alike. Imagine what confusion there would be if architects and builders did not use tape measures or rulers and merely made their plans and built their buildings based on guess work, their estimations as to distance and space! There would be no coherence, only opinion. Thus the Church of Christ is not built upon the opinions, views and interpretations of men, but on the Word of God, on the doctrines of the apostles, which reveal what is the truth of God. Christ’s people, who are of the household of God, "...are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the Chief Corner Stone" (Eph. 2:20). "That is, the doctrines of Divine revelation, whether communicated by prophets or apostles, were laid at the foundation of the Christian Church. It was not founded on philosophy, or tradition, or on human laws, or on a venerable antiquity, but on the great truths which God had revealed." And, just as there can be no true Church if it is not founded upon true doctrine, so too, there can be no true Christian whose beliefs are not based upon the great doctrines which comprise the Gospel of God. The Scriptures refer to those who are not part of the Church of God, not among those who are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets and therefore believers in God’s only Gospel, as "...strangers and foreigners..." (Eph. 2:19). Only after they have believed in God’s Gospel can any be rightly judged as "...fellowcitizens with the saints..." (Eph. 2:19). The Gospel is God’s reliable Standard. It is the Standard by which we measure Truth. Any plan of salvation, any opinion, that does not conform to God’s Gospel cannot be of God and as long as anyone places their trust in it, they cannot be of God but are doomed to eternal punishment. Paul had already told the Galatians what the Gospel was and by doing so, he was in fact also saying what the Gospel was not. He made this perfectly clear when he declared that anyone bringing a different gospel was an accursed person and so, too, was their message. Paul was saying, ‘The gospel a person preaches is not the Gospel that saves unless it agrees with what I say it is'. Not incidentally, Paul’s warning not only concerned the future, those who would bring a false gospel, but it was a retroactive warning in that it also covered those who had brought different gospels in the past. Paul’s warning not only concerned those who would bring, but those who have brought a different gospel. This should be no less applicable in our own day, in fact more so. As we read Paul’s warning, it should not only be seen as a warning about those who will come in the future bringing false gospels, but more than ever it should be viewed as a warning about those who have brought gospels in the past that differ from Paul’s.

 

Truth is to be judged by what God has said it is and not by what a man believes, and is firmly convinced, God has said. The Gospel that is to be believed in, the only Gospel that did not come from man but is given by God and which reveals the Righteousness of Christ, is the Gospel that Paul and the other apostles preached and which is clearly taught throughout the pages of Holy Scripture. Many believe they know the Gospel and to their minds, they are convinced that what they believe is the truth of God, otherwise they would no doubt reject it, for who in their right mind would believe something they knew to be wrong. They believe they are comparing Scripture with Scripture when studying to see if what they believe is right. But it is often a case of falling into the familiar trap of selecting only those Scriptures with which one is already cognisant, rather than weighing things up by the whole of Scripture, in particular those Scriptures which tend to make a person feel uncomfortable in what they already believe. A man can compare Scripture with Scripture and believe he is truly testing what he believes by what the Scriptures say, but as long as he is wearing Roman Catholic, Mormon, J.W., or Arminian etc., colored glasses, he is locked into believing the false gospels that these groups teach. As is so often the case, most who read the Bible are ignorant of THE Gospel, they are blinded by the god of this world, Satan, to the truth and so, to their minds, what they see and believe does make sense. According to their limited knowledge of what the Scriptures are really saying, what they believe does appear to be the very Gospel truth of God. To their minds, that which in reality makes no sense makes perfect sense. They never realise that what they believe is nonsense. The Scriptures encourage the believer to "...believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world" (1 Jn. 4:1). People of various religious persuasions all quote this, and other verses like it, in their warnings about those who bring what they consider to be false teachings, but they err terribly who know not THE Truth, who do not begin with the truth, and who try and judge what the truth is without a saving knowledge of it. Like the disciples of the Pharisees in Matthew 22:29, Jesus will say to them, "...ye do err, not knowing the Scriptures, nor the power of God." The Roman Catholic is firmly convinced that the gospel Rome teaches was the one Paul taught, and therefore one who brings a gospel different to the one the Roman Catholic Church teaches is an accursed man promoting a false gospel. (The Roman Catholic Church places a curse upon any who teach differently to what she teaches and who says her gospel is false.) But what standard is the Roman Catholic man judging by? One can see from this that if you have not the Gospel, Paul’s Gospel, GOD’S Gospel, you will judge even it as a false gospel, as a false message delivering a false hope of salvation, all the while basing your assertion upon a false and inaccurate standard. He does not judge by the truth, but by a gospel that is as false as the one the Mormon or Seventh-Day Adventist or Charismatic might bring to him.

 

One cannot simply believe what one is being taught is THE Gospel, based merely on the fact that the one who preaches it has warned of false gospels. So many today believe they have the truth, not based so much on what they believe, but on what they don’t believe. So many ‘ministries’ concentrate on exposing false teachings and practices and, to the mind of many, this is enough to convince them that such a ministry must be teaching the truth about God, for look how much error they are exposing. It is a flawed logic at best and a deadly one at worst! Simply because a man comes to you warning of imminent danger, is no reason you should automatically trust this man and take him at his word. Be wary, be alert, activate your senses, but don’t automatically trust that person or think that just because he has warned you of trouble ahead, he has the right solution. Most are familiar with the story of Chicken Little, where the fox came and warned the chickens that the sky was falling. The chickens immediately believed the fox and followed him to his lair where he killed them all and ate them up! Those who warn of danger, or of false teachings by counterfeit christian organizations, are not seen as wanting to do us harm but as attempting to help us, therefore many people instinctively listen to them and count what they say as reliable and beneficial. We all tend to believe someone if they tell us to watch out for so and so. To simply presume that one is teaching the truth because their warnings of false teachings and practices have all been proven correct, is a ridiculous and nonsensical philosophy upon which to base one’s hope for salvation. Many ‘ministries’ do rightly expose a multitude of false practices and teachings. The Seventh-Day Adventist Church and the J.W.’s, for instance, each do a well researched job in exposing the erroneous teachings and practices of Roman Catholicism and both boast a sizeable number of former Roman Catholics as members of their respective organizations, but does this automatically qualify either of their gospels as the true one? Hardly. Both of these movements teach gospels which differ from one another, so how can a man rightly judge the truth by how well a ministry exposes error? Both organizations rightly say that Romanism’s gospel is a false gospel but they say this, not judging by the true Gospel, but on the fact it differs from their own perverted gospels, which they believe to be the true Gospel, but in fact are just as false as that of Roman Catholicism.

 

How then can a person know that what he believes is the true Gospel or a false one that cannot save? By seeing if its doctrines differ in any way from those which make up the Gospel once delivered to the apostle Paul by revelation from the Lord Jesus Christ. No matter how many differing opinions there are about what that Gospel entails, it cannot and does not alter the fact that there is only one true Gospel and that God reveals this Gospel to all His chosen ones. They will hear His voice and they will obey His Gospel (see Jn. 10:4,5,27). Some may say, ‘But how can we know for certain that what we are believing are the right doctrines which make up God’s Gospel?’ This is a very valid and important question and one which a lot of people should be asking. The short answer is: any gospel that conditions salvation on anything a man must do is a false gospel. Any salvation that is dependant on a work of man’s and not solely on the grace of God is a false gospel. Any gospel that leaves room for a man to boast in what he has done, even if he attributes what he has done to God, is a false gospel (see Eph. 2:8,9; Lk. 18:9-12). Any gospel that declares you saved whilst in ignorance of the true Gospel and bases your salvation on what you have done or what has happened to you is a false gospel. God’s Gospel is the only one that gives all the glory to God for salvation from beginning to final glory, conditioning it solely on what Christ has done to secure and maintain the salvation of all for whom He died. Anything that strays from this reveals itself as a false and misleading gospel and is promoted by Satan’s many ministries of misinformation. Some promulgators and defenders of false gospels are masters of sophistry, employing "methods of argument that are seemingly plausible though actually invalid and misleading" for they are predicated on a lie.

 

God has promised in His Word that His people would not be left in the dark. Speaking to believers, Paul said God had "...made known unto US the mystery of His will..." (Eph. 1:9 cf. Eph. 6:19). God’s people would hear His voice and all His people will hear and believe His Gospel: "...the sheep follow Him: for they know His voice....they shall hear My voice....My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me" (Jn. 10:4,16,27). The Lord Jesus said, "...Everyone that is of the Truth heareth My voice" (Jn. 18:37). To be sure of this, God has written His Word, He has recorded His Word, and not merely spoken it audibly to a few men and then hoped that His message would be relayed as accurately as when He first revealed it. With God’s Word in written form, His people would not have to blindly trust and accept what their leaders brought to them as the Word of God, but could see the Scriptures for themselves and test what was presented to them as truth. The Gospel of God is taught, it is explained, and it is made perfectly clear in the Scriptures for all that are given eyes to see it. And significantly, God has sent His Holy Spirit—the Spirit of Truth—to ensure that the elect believe the Truth of God, His Gospel (Jn. 16:7,13,14). THEY ARE GIVEN THE FAITH OF GOD, SO WHAT OTHER GOSPEL COULD THEY POSSIBLY BELIEVE THAN THE GOSPEL OF GOD!! Who would lead the saved person to believe a false gospel? The Holy Spirit of God? The One Who is called by the Son, "The Spirit of Truth" and Who said "He shall glorify Me"? Would God give His Faith to one of His elect so that they would believe a false gospel? God’s Gospel plan of salvation will not, and does not, contradict one verse of Scripture. It does not leave any room for a man to boast that he has in some way, and to even the smallest degree, been an active and necessary participant, a contributor, to his own salvation. The only one that a true believer boasts in is his Lord glorying in the fact that he understands and knows Him (see Jer. 9:23,24). IF ITS ALL OF GRACE, THEN IT’S ALL OF GOD!!! If a person is truly saved by grace, then it stands to biblical reason that they are saved through FAITH in God’s only Gospel, for it is a faith which does not come from man but is given by God. THEREFORE THE SAVED PERSON IS SAVED BY THE GRACE OF GOD, THROUGH THE FAITH OF GOD, IN THE GOSPEL OF GOD, AND NO OTHER!! No other God, no other faith and no other gospel can save. It is the same God, by the same Faith in the same Gospel that every saved person has believed and will believe. If the faith you have is God-given, then you will believe in no other gospel but His. If it were possible for a truly saved person to believe wrongly about the Gospel, then they would be no different to any lost person who has placed his trust in a perverted gospel. What good would it do then for God to give His Faith to someone, if even that Faith could believe a false gospel? Why does one have to be given the faith to believe God’s Gospel? Because without it we would not and could not ever savingly believe it! The faith that is spawned from man’s fallen nature could never savingly believe the Gospel of God. No man by nature could believe this great Gospel that does not condition any part of salvation on what a man must do, but conditions it all upon what Christ has done. Man in his dead-in-sin spiritual state cannot recognize God’s Gospel of grace as being the one and only Gospel that can save, for he is conditioned by his sinful, fallen nature to believe that just as he lost his standing with God by his disobedience, he can renew it by his obedience. The faith which is given by God believes only His Gospel, and the faith which man has by nature can only believe the gospels of men.

 

This shatters the myth that simply because man is an imperfect creature, it is impossible for him to know exactly what the Gospel is. This pathetic and contemptible lie is the excuse many so-called ‘ministers’ use to run to and hide behind when asked the question, ‘What is the Gospel’. One would be hard-pressed to find an answer to why any true minister of God would ever shy away from answering this most vital of questions. Did the apostle Paul act in this way? Was his reaction to the jailer, when he asked this question in Acts 16, one of hesitation? Did Paul say to him, ‘Well, no one really knows what the Gospel is, its just that the Lord commanded that it be believed and preached by His people'. What an absurd situation it would be if the Gospel of God was unknowable, in other words, for Him to have commanded that it be believed knowing that He would never fully reveal it to anyone! You see, knowing the Gospel is not about man figuring it out or locating it somewhere, nor does it hinge on how well it has been preserved down through the ages. Knowing the Gospel is all about God revealing the Gospel! It is about being given the Faith to believe it. Salvation does not depend on a man’s efforts but is a gift given by God.

 

If one cannot know the Gospel, then one is saying that God will not, or does not, reveal His Gospel any longer; that this only lasted for a few years and that He now saves by a different means. And, so, if none can know God’s Gospel, God would have to accept those who believe anything that even vaguely resembles it. What an insane and scripturally untenable situation that would be! If your ‘pastor’ becomes reserved or uncommunicative, or hesitant and stumbles over his words when you ask him what the Gospel is, TAKE IT AS A SURE SIGN THAT HE DOES NOT KNOW IT and you had better find someone that does! If you have any misgivings about the gospel you have been taught, do not for a moment hesitate to question it and those who teach it, subjecting both the teaching and the teachers to thorough investigation and biblical scrutiny. True Christians do not fear the Truth, nor do true Christian ministers offer any protest at having to define the Gospel they believe or having what they teach examined. The true Gospel gives all the glory for salvation to God and leaves no room for a man to boast in anything he has done in order to get saved or stay ‘saved’. It is not a complicated message. It is not a message that is difficult to understand. It is a plain and simple message: man is dead in sin and cannot come to God in and of himself (Matt. 19:25,26; Rom. 3:10,11; Eph. 2:1,12); God chose a people for Himself before the foundation of the world, not based on anything they did but upon His will, wisdom and grace (Eph. 1:3-6; 2 Tim. 1:9); Christ Jesus was sent to the earth to establish a perfect righteousness and to die for these people God had chosen and entrusted to Christ’s care (Jn. 10:27,28; 17:2,3; Eph. 5:25); their sins would be charged to Him and His Righteousness to them, thus making them wholly acceptable unto God (2 Cor. 5:21; Eph. 5:2); all these people would believe His Gospel and be saved, for this is the will of God and none of them will perish (Jn. 10:26-29). This, in a nutshell, is the Gospel of God. Of course, there are several truths about Christ, such as His virgin birth and His resurrection and the fact that the Triune God is the Creator of all things, that must also be believed in but these are generally accepted by the majority of professing christians.

 

Many are aware and believe in the historical certainty concerning the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ. But if what they believe about His death, burial and resurrection is not "according to the Scriptures" (1 Cor. 15:3,4), then what they believe is a lie and the doctrines they have placed their faith in are false doctrines and the christ whom those doctrines portray, is a false christ. The apostle Paul, in Romans 10, testified to the fervent zeal that the Jews of Israel possessed but he said that in spite of their obvious enthusiasm, their zeal was NOT according to knowledge and therefore he counted them as lost people, as evidenced by his praying for their salvation: "...my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved. For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge" (Rom. 10:1,2). Paul, too, in his pre-Gospel days, was one of those Jews who was zealous for God (see Acts 22:3), but it was not according to knowledge. Don’t ever fall into the trap of thinking that anyone, including yourself, is saved simply due to the presence of ‘zeal for God’. A ZEAL FOR GOD WITHOUT RIGHT KNOWLEDGE OF GOD CANNOT SAVE YOU. If one’s beliefs are not in line with what the whole of Scripture says about how God saves rather than just a few favorite verses, then one is believing a false gospel and false gospels can only produce false christians. The Jews no doubt believed and taught many truths about God. They knew the Old Testament prophets and so forth but none of this knowledge was salvation knowledge, it did not benefit them in the matter of salvation, otherwise Paul would not have prayed for their salvation. Also, the mere fact that the Jews looked to circumcision, something they could do, to ‘secure’ salvation, was testament enough that they did not hold to the pure Gospel of grace. The Church of Christ is not founded solely on the Old Testament prophets, but also upon the doctrine of the apostles (see Eph. 2:20). A man may be convinced that what he believes is the Gospel, but neither his conviction nor any amount of accompanying sincerity is any proof, in and of itself, that what he believes is right. Nor will these things—which, when you come right down to it are nothing but emotions, what a man feels—ever make what a person believes, right. If one’s zeal of God is not according to the knowledge of God, which comes from God, then it is a zeal that is according to ignorance of God. The foundation stone of all man-made religion is ignorance. Ignorance of who God is and how He saves has sent more people to hell than just about anything else! Perhaps none can be so convinced of a matter as a child can, yet his conviction is hardly the rule whereby we can safely judge whether he is right. Why is this so? Well, just like the Jews in Paul’s day, the child has a zeal, he is exuberant in what he believes, but it is obvious to the parent that the child believes something based on a wrong perception. His zeal is obviously not based on right knowledge. Error has never prevented anybody from being zealous about God—from living a moral lifestyle, from attending ‘church’ or from avidly reading the Bible—and a continued state of ignorance will ensure that this misdirected zeal remains firmly in place. IGNORANCE IS THE MOTHER OF ALL ERROR. A man may live as moral a life as is humanly possible, running his life according to a list of do’s and don’ts. He may be as religious as he can be, kind, courteous, conscientious, humble, charitable, devoted, committed, faithful etc., but if he believes any gospel other than that one and Holy Gospel of God, he stands accursed! "There is a way that SEEMETH RIGHT unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death" (Prov. 16:25). While it is true to say there are lots of things true Christians don’t do, it must be pointed out that at the head of that list is: THEY DO NOT BELIEVE FALSE GOSPELS! Our conviction, which is nothing more than what we believe, is no guarantee that what we are convicted of, what we believe, is the truth. Truth is what God has declared. It cannot be judged or discovered by our conviction. Man has many false gospels upon which have been founded huge religious empires, but no matter how many people believe something, no matter how ‘successful’ or large a religious organization may be, and no matter how many people it has helped to become model citizens or by clothing them and feeding them etc., if what it teaches is any gospel other than that one and Holy Gospel of God, the whole thing stands accursed of God and is a blight on His earth! Rather than saving men, these groups prevent them from knowing the truth by filling their minds with a false truth, an untruth, and lead them all to Hell. How can there be even one word of good said about such an organization, when under the cloak of ‘good deeds’ it is deceiving men with a false message of hope? To speak well of them would be like lauding the man who hands out a lovely piece of cake to people as they head unawares toward the edge of the cliff! I would much rather be warned of the impending danger if I continued on my way forward, being pointed in the right direction and handed a piece of stale bread!! The blinkered view of the benefits and good that such ‘smile all the while’ organizations perform fails to reveal the big picture, which is that NO ONE IS BEING SAVED! No one is being told the truth and so all remain lost, for their faith is in another gospel. They may well be helping their fellow man materially in this life, but the cost for this momentary earthly comfort—eternal misery—is an enormous price to pay. Jesus said of the false teachers of His day, "But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in" (Matt. 23:13). "They shut it up by their doctrines. By teaching false doctrines respecting the Messiah; by binding the people to an observance of their traditions; by opposing Jesus, and attempting to convince the people that He was an imposter, they prevented many from becoming His followers." Isn’t this what is happening in our own day? Aren’t all those who deny THE Gospel denying the true Messiah and calling Him an imposter? Of course they are. They call good evil and evil good and ask us to trust in a messiah who is NOT God’s Messiah but a charlatan who, rather than saving people from hell, leads people to it! The observance of traditions that are not based on truth and do not come from God has kept multitudes from the truth and in bondage to the false gospels which oppose the truth. Jesus said, "...ye made the commandment of God of none effect by your tradition" (Matt. 15:6). In Luke 11:52 Jesus says, "...ye have taken away the key of knowledge..." "...they had taken away the right interpretation of the ancient prophecies respecting the Messiah, and thus had done all they could to prevent the people from receiving Jesus as the Redeemer." Such people are the murderers of men’s souls. This, is further proof of the fact that if your knowledge of the Gospel is not in accordance with the Scriptures, then you are none of His. The Lord Jesus put it this way: "...in vain they do worship Me, teaching (and believing) for doctrines the commandments of men" (Matt. 15:9).

 

The truth can only be judged, or measured, by itself. You cannot get to the truth by trying to judge it with nothing but false and perverted standards. It cannot be measured by the subjective. For instance, a man thinks he is a Christian. Part of his conviction may be based on the fact he has had quite a significant moral transformation in his life since becoming a ‘Christian’. One such man I know has rejected the Gospel even though he claims to believe the doctrines of it. What he cannot do is turn away from, according to his mind, the fact that upon his so-called conversion he was able, without much ado, to quit the drugs and alcohol he was abusing. This change made quite an impact on his life and he has praised his god for it ever since. This subjective experience was no doubt a very significant moment in his life and no one is doubting the reality of it, but is it a safe practice to allow oneself to be convinced, to see such an experience as positive unchallengeable proof that one is saved? Perhaps the following illustration will clear the mist from the window of anyone’s mind who is not quite sure. What are we to say about the Hindu or Buddhist man who, prior to becoming such, was also heavily into drug taking and crime, who upon his conversion to Eastern religion, also had a dramatic change come over him and enjoyed a withdrawal symptom free escape from the substances he was abusing? Is this man saved? Is this man now a child of God? Must what this man now believes be the truth of God because of what he ‘experienced’? Does his experience validate his claim of having the true God? HARDLY!! How do we know this? By what the man believes! The Buddhist or Hindu does not believe that Jesus Christ is God, let alone abide in the doctrine of Christ, so how could anyone claiming to be a Christian say that such men are saved because of what they experienced? Obviously, to judge a man saved based on what the man tells you he has experienced is utter folly. There is no such question in the real world as ‘How did God save you?’ for God only saves one way: through belief of the Gospel. A Hindu or Buddhist is judged lost, according to the Word of God, based on what he believes and does not believe, not on what he has experienced. ALL WHO DO NOT BELIEVE THE GOSPEL OF CHRIST ARE RIGHTLY JUDGED AS LOST, REGARDLESS OF THEIR EXPERIENCES. Such people trust in another gospel, another message of salvation, and therefore in another god who simply cannot save. How can anyone possibly say that the man mentioned earlier who claims to be a Christian, who claims to be a believer of the Gospel, is saved when he believes that he was saved before he knew and ‘believed’ the Gospel and who uses his subjective experiences to support his claim! You see, the Hindu and the professing Christian are in the same boat for neither one believes the Gospel.

 

The Lord Jesus Christ, in His final words to His apostles, said clearly, "...Go ye into all the world, and preach the Gospel to every creature. He that BELIEVETH and is baptized SHALL BE SAVED; but HE THAT BELIEVETH NOT SHALL BE DAMNED" (Mk. 16:15,16). The Gospel is not extinct! It cannot be, for this command of Jesus to His disciples was not restricted to a handful of men but is an eternal decree to all His people for all time and the Message He told them to preach then is the same Message He tells His people to preach now! When Jesus commanded them to preach THE Gospel, He was commanding that HIS Gospel be preached and no other! Jesus’ words are perfectly aligned with Paul’s statement in Galatians 1 and show Paul’s words to not merely be the words of a man, but the very Words of God. And they would never have been included in the Scriptures if they were not the Words of God. He who believes the Gospel is saved and, obviously, he who does not believe the Gospel is lost. He who believes what God has said is saved, he who does not believe what God has said is lost. He who believes in God’s plan of salvation is saved and he who does not place his hope and trust in God’s plan of salvation, who believes that there is another way, is lost. Isn’t this the simplest of teachings? And doesn’t this just make so much plain sense? And if everyone believed it as God’s Word, would it not do away with all the controversies about who is saved, who isn’t saved and who might be saved? Of course it would. Black is black and white is white and never the twain shall meet.Either you believe the Gospel or you do not believe it. Either you are saved or you are not saved. Notice that Christ did not command His followers to go out into all the world and preach the Gospels, plural, but only one Gospel, the Gospel of God. Notice, too, that by telling His disciples to preach the Gospel, it is a given that they must have known what the Gospel was. So what other reason could there have been for them to preach Christ’s Gospel than that others too could know and believe it, so that they could distinguish God’s Gospel from the gospels of men! So that they could reject the false and believe and promote only the true. The Lord Jesus did not encourage the preaching of several gospels, but only one, for only one Gospel rightly declared God’s testimony and only that Gospel should be believed, because only that Gospel saves. Seeing that the Lord Jesus commanded only one Gospel to be preached, does it not then make obvious and perfect sense that there is only one Gospel Christ has commanded us to believe. If Jesus commanded His people to preach only one Gospel, then it is a given that this same Gospel is the only one He would ever encourage anyone to believe. Why? Because it is the only one that saves proving that it is the only Gospel God has! It is the only one that reveals the details of God’s plan for the salvation of His people, it reveals the only real and certain hope anyone can have for salvation. Trusting in any other plan is just plain suicide. God cannot and will not save you based on your belief of a false gospel! God does not save people based on their belief of, and their trusting in, something which HE HAS NOT SAID! You may be able to convince others that what you believe is truth, but how will you convince God? GOD DOES NOT SAVE ANYONE BASED ON WHAT THEY BELIEVE THE GOSPEL IS, BUT ON WHAT HE SAYS THE GOSPEL IS! Just as He sent only one Savior into the world, so too, there is only one Gospel that reveals this Savior. The Lord Jesus said, "I am the Way..." (Jn. 14:6). How many ways to salvation? Only one—the Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, if He is revealed in only one Gospel, how can any be saved by believing other gospels, none of which reveal the only way to salvation—Christ? The Scriptures state: "He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself, he that believeth not God hath made Him a liar; because he believed not THE RECORD THAT GOD GAVE OF HIS SON" (1 Jn. 5:10). A record is "...a declaration by a witness who speaks with the authority of one who knows". It is a report, a testimony, a witness. To believe a false gospel is to believe a record that God has not given of His Son. It is to believe something that has been reported by one who does not know and therefore has no authority to speak. Those who do not believe God’s Gospel, which contains the truth about His Son, will perish. One can only exalt Christ by believing His Gospel. Those who do not believe it deny Him, revealing that their faith is in another, even though they call him ‘jesus’. To savingly believe God’s Gospel is to "...have the TESTIMONY OF JESUS..." (Rev. 19:10). To believe in any other is to not have the testimony of Jesus, but that of an imposter. Jesus did not say that those who believed the Gospels shall be saved, but only those who believed the one and only Gospel He commanded His disciples to teach in all the world. The Scriptures do not say, ‘Te dum, te dum everyone can come', regardless of what they believe, or if they believe enough, but "...whosoever BELIEVETH IN HIM should not perish, but have eternal life" (Jn. 3:15). Does what you believe paint a full picture of Who Christ is and what He has done? If not, all you have in your possession is a worthless forgery! Someone might say, ‘But I do believe in Jesus’. Yes, but is he the Jesus of the Gospel of God? (see the author’s book ‘God’s Only Jesus’). Again, we have one message being advocated as God’s Message. In effect, Jesus was saying that only one Gospel is the power of God unto salvation, so why would it be any different today? Why has it become ‘o.k. with God’ in the minds of so many, and why is it advocated by the largest religious institutions of the ‘christian’ persuasion, that belief of that single Gospel is NOT an absolute necessity for any to be saved? That one can become a Christian and then gradually learn and come to believe in the truths of the Gospel. That one can believe He died for all, or for the elect, and still be believing in the same Jesus. Why has Christ’s doctrine become such a dispensable and immaterial thing, a non-essential, when it comes to the matter of salvation? Something which has taken second place to a gospel that places man’s interests ahead of what the truth of God is. People who follow such thinking show that they are in disagreement with Jesus Christ, whose word has never changed on the matter. Since when has God consented to saving people who refused to believe what HE says about how HE saves? When it comes to the issue of salvation, the Gospel is the method and all others are the madness. Neither the method or the Message have ever changed, nor will they, because God told Paul and others to preach that Message, HIS Message, and to record for all time the fact that if anyone brought a different message they were to be looked at as accursed people. Not as God’s people, not as Christians, but as accursed people, the very antithesis of those who are blessed of God. How can anyone be said to be blessed of God and not know His Truth—what He has said? He who does not believe in the specific doctrine of the one and only Gospel God ever gave, which bears record of Who His Son is and what He has done, is a lost person. The Gospel is the key to heaven. False gospels have never granted access into God’s Kingdom, for just as square pegs were not made for round holes, they cannot unlock it’s door. Simply put, there is only one combination that will open a safe. Only one combination, which if followed carefully, will open the safe door. If one tries to open it equipped only with one’s idea of what the combination is or with only part of the combination, the door will never open. In perfect harmony with what Paul preached, these words of Jesus the Lord in Mark 16, are seen as a clear indication that there is only one Gospel. IT ALONE MUST BE PREACHED AND THEREFORE IT ALONE MUST BE BELIEVED. If you want to be saved, BELIEVE WHAT GOD HAS SAID, believe His report of Who His Son is and what He has done, and reject everything that conflicts with what God has said. It is not enough to simply say, ‘I believe all that God has said and I reject all that is not of Him’, for if you do not know what He has said, how can you believe it? And, if you do not know what is not of Him, how can you reject it or repent of it? How can you turn from something if you do not know what it is? And how can you turn to something if you do not know what it is? If the solution to the universal problem of man’s dilemma of life all hinged on the answer to 4 + 4, and Jesus was the only one who had that answer, does it sound reasonable to you that He would say to His disciples, ‘Go and tell them the answer is 6, 9, 12 or any number other than the correct number/answer, 4'? Do you think He would have said, ‘Tell them to believe any number they believe to be the right answer and if they are sincere enough in whatever they believe, I will save them?’ Or, ‘Tell them the answer is 8 but that any other number they believe to be the answer will be just as correct and I will save them anyway?’ Surely not. So how can any claim to be in their right minds and say that they are deserving of our trust when they say that any other gospel apart from, or as well as, the one Jesus commanded be preached and believed, can save just as well. Those who preach false gospels are blind and so are all those who believe them (see Matt. 15:13,14). A humble and hard working teacher does not tell his students that 4 + 4 = 9 or 10, or encourages his students to feel free to solve this particular mathematical equation with whatever number they feel is right, or with a number they believe it should equal. No, any teacher worth his salt tells his students the correct answer and then encourages them to not ever believe that the situation will one day change, that one day 4 + 4 will not equal 8, or will not only equal 8, but that one may be able to answer the question with whatever number they like and still be correct. Even my 5 year old son can understand that! The Gospel of God has never changed, and the fact that one must believe this Gospel to be saved will also never change. Why would God ever change His Gospel anyway? To change it would mean it was in some way deficient or flawed. This would mean that those who believed it before it was changed were saved by some inferior version—the best God could come up with at the time. How could He ever change His Gospel after telling us in His Word—thereby before witnesses, binding Himself to His promise—that anything which differed from it is a false gospel and the people who believe it accursed.

 

If this Great Gospel of Jesus Christ must be believed in order for one to be saved, then it stands to reason that it can be known; that it is distinguishable from all false gospels. For it to be believed, it must be distinguishable, it must be identifiable, it must stand out from ALL others. A gospel is distinguishable by its doctrines. If those doctrines are not ALL in accord with the Gospel of Christ, then it is a false gospel and a man does not have God if he does not abide in His doctrine. If the doctrines a man preaches or believes are in line with what the Word of God teaches, then it may, with a justified confidence, be trusted in as the very Doctrine of Christ. ONE MESSAGE, NOT SEVERAL, is entitled to be called the Gospel of God. ONE MESSAGE is to be preached and therefore ONE MESSAGE ONLY is to be believed and obeyed as the very Message, the Gospel, of God. No other message qualifies as God’s Message. No other gospel is necessary, for what purpose would it serve that the true Gospel does not!! No other gospel can save apart from the Gospel that God has declared. No false gospel is like the true Gospel, for every false gospel leaves room for a man to boast in what he has done or must do to get saved and/or stay saved. No gospel is like God’s Gospel, which gives ALL the glory for salvation from beginning to final glory to God because it is only made possible by His grace, and teaches that the Righteousness of Christ alone is sufficient to save and preserve a man for heaven; that nothing a man can do or refrains from doing can, or does, play any part in what saves him; that salvation really is ALL of grace and not a bit of it is merited by anything a man does. Salvation is by what God has done, not by what a man must do. The Gospel of God is the Word of God and not the word of man. It has nothing in common with the ideas of man as pertaining to salvation. No religion on this earth has ever devised a message of salvation that conditions salvation solely on grace, for all of man’s gospels have one thing in common and that is that in some way, in some measure and to various degrees, MAN must do something to qualify himself as being fit to be saved or to remain ‘saved’. And there is a huge gulf between God’s Gospel of grace and man’s gospels of works. They were formed on diametrically opposing principals: ONE GIVES ALL THE GLORY TO GOD, AND THE OTHER LEAVES ROOM FOR MAN TO BOAST. You see, God does not add anything to His Gospel that man must do to attain or ensure salvation, for this would automatically and immediately change it from a Gospel of grace—something unmerited and freely given by God thus causing the glory for it to be shared between God and man—to a gospel of works (see Rom. 11:6). Many falsely accuse us of conditioning salvation on knowledge, for we say that for a man to be saved he must know and believe the Gospel. But what we are saying is not what our opponents have inferred and would like to convince others we are saying. A man must believe the Gospel, not in order to get saved, but to show that he is saved. A man’s believing God’s Gospel shows that God has revealed Himself to that person. It is not principally a matter of knowledge, but of revelation. Hence, man is not rewarded with salvation because he has believed, but the fact that he believes is the evidence that God has visited that person with His grace and granted them the Faith to believe His Gospel. Anyone who does not believe the Gospel evidences an absence of grace, an absence of God in their lives. It is important to note that God’s grace is not that which enables a man to believe, but the grace of God is that whereby a person is given the faith that ensures a man believes in HIS Gospel alone. "Thy people shall be willing in the day of THY power..." (Psa. 110:3). No man chooses God; no man decides in and of himself to come to God, but the Scriptures say: "Blessed is the man whom THOU CHOOSEST, and CAUSEST to approach unto Thee..." (Psa. 65:4). This is not a gospel of works, but the Gospel of Grace. It is not of man’s doing, it is ALL of God. "All men by nature (and therefore every gospel that man has ever imagined) seek salvation by the law. They set up some standard which they mean to comply with, and expect to be saved by conformity to that. With some it is the law of honor, with others the law of honesty, with others the laws of kindness and courtesy, and with others the law of God. If they comply with the requirements of these laws, they suppose that they will be safe; and it is only the grace of God showing them how defective their standard is, or how far they come from complying with its demands, that can ever bring them from this dangerous dependance." That is the fundamental difference between man’s gospels and God’s Gospel: man’s gospels insist that man must do something, that there is some condition he needs to meet, some initiatory act he needs to perform, for him to become saved or remain ‘saved’. Consequently, such gospels leave room for a man to boast that he has played a part in his own salvation (whether he attributes what he has done to God or not) and to establishing a righteousness of his own, and are therefore anti-grace. If the gospel you believe conditions any part of salvation on what you must do, then you have a gospel of works and the apostle said, "...if it be of works, THEN IS IT NO MORE GRACE..." (Rom. 11:6). Such a gospel is diametrically opposed to God’s Gospel, which says that by the Righteousness, the obedience, of ONE a man is saved (Rom. 5:19). On the other hand, Paul said, if salvation is "...by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace..." (Rom. 11:6). In other words, if salvation is by works then it is not of God, but if it is of grace then it is not of man. ADD ANYTHING TO GRACE AND IT CEASES TO BE GRACE! ADD ANYTHING TO WHAT GOD HAS SAID AND IT BECOMES WHAT GOD HAS NOT SAID! One cannot have a gospel of grace and works, for the two will not mix, they cannot co-exist. Faith properly preached, grace properly preached will leave no room for a man to boast. Either you believe salvation is all of God or you do not believe it is all of God. Either you do not frustrate the grace of God by believing in the imputed righteousness of Christ or you do frustrate—nullify—the grace of God by believing that righteousness can come, or that salvation can be held on to, by an act of personal obedience. The apostle Paul, like all true believers, "...do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain" (Gal. 2:21). One cannot have a salvation that begins by grace but is only successfully completed by a man’s works (Gal. 3:3). You cannot have the Gospel of grace, or salvation by grace, if any part of it is conditioned on man. Its either all of God or all of man, for the two can never be reconciled. Again, many claim to believe all this, that it is all Christ, that Christ is their all in all and that we play no part in our own salvation, that even our faith, our believing, is a gift from God and does not come from within ourselves. Yet this profession of faith is mere lip service, for they also say that BEFORE believing this they were just as saved! Or they think that one must keep up a certain standard of holy living to ensure one remains saved, never realising that such thinking is conducive to a salvation that is not secured by what Christ has done but is dependant on what we do! The whole works or grace/works system is nothing but a gigantic religious fraud! Those who believe in a false gospel are fooling themselves all of the time! They are only fooling themselves if they think they believe in salvation by grace; they are only fooling themselves if they think they believe the Gospel of God. I dare say that before ‘believing’ the truth, they were believing something other than the truth, so my question to these people is, Upon what do you base your salvation? What is the foundation of your salvation? I hope they would not insult my intelligence by saying that it is the Gospel of God, for they have just said that they were saved BEFORE they believed it!!! What a dilemma these people will find themselves in trying to explain all this to God and what sheer terror they will experience when they hear the awesome words: "I NEVER KNEW YOU: DEPART FROM ME, YE THAT WORK INIQUITY" (Matt. 7:23).

 

In light of all this, how can anyone say that there is more than one Gospel that can save? More than one Gospel that relates God’s Holy message of salvation? Or more than one Gospel which preaches the true Jesus the only true Savior? How many Gospels could there possibly be which save, when the apostle said anything different to his Gospel was a false one, a nonsense when it came to salvation? This was not only due to the fact that it was the only Gospel God gave him, but indisputably shows that this Gospel is the only Gospel that can rightly be called the Gospel of grace. In other words, it is the only Gospel that is based on grace, for there could only be one such Gospel. All others may include a perverted version of grace, but are founded on works. Thus one cannot escape the fact that there can only be ONE plan of salvation that is all of grace and it is God’s plan. All others then must, of necessity, include within them a degree of works. The apostle Paul warned of "another gospel...another christ...another spirit..." (2 Cor. 11:4). These would all be recognizable and distinguishable from the true Gospel, the true Christ, the true Holy Spirit. Do you think that a false gospel, which is inextricably connected to a false jesus and a counterfeit holy spirit, could ever save anyone or teach the True Christ? Do you think that any person believing in such a gospel is saved, or who believes they were saved whilst believing it, even though they no longer believe it, claiming to now believe the true Gospel? Or how about the possibility of the true Gospel ever presenting you with a false savior? None can rightly answer ‘yes’ to any one of these questions, so how and why do people insist that they were saved before they heard the true Gospel? What are they basing this assertion on? Surely it cannot be truth? For the true Gospel denies that any other gospel conveys the truth of God. IF IT IS NOT THE GOSPEL OF GOD IT CANNOT BE THE GOSPEL OF TRUTH. False gospels are brought forth by a false spirit and promote false christs, therefore how can they save? Only the true Gospel taught by the True Holy Spirit teaches the true Christ. The Scriptures say that the Holy Spirit would only ever tell of the true Jesus and never a counterfeit: "...the Spirit of Truth, which proceedeth from the Father, HE SHALL TESTIFY OF ME....when He, the Spirit of Truth is come, He will guide you into all Truth...He shall glorify Me..." (Jn. 15:26; 16:13,14). "For as many as are led of the Spirit of God, THEY are the sons of God" (Rom. 8:14). Obviously then, those who are not led by the Spirit of Truth do not believe the truth and therefore cannot count themselves as the sons of God. This true Jesus of whom the Holy Spirit testifies is the same one that God bears record to in His Gospel. It has never been any different, it will never be any different. The Scriptures abound with verse after verse which state that only one message, God’s Message: His Holy Gospel, saves; only one Message which God recognizes as His Gospel; only one Message that qualifies as GOD’S Message. Here is just a sample: Jesus said, "...repent ye, and believe the Gospel" (Mk. 1:15). Which Gospel is that? Is it any gospel that mentions the words ‘grace’ and ‘jesus’? NO! Is it a gospel that you believe is the Gospel? NO! It is the only Gospel that GOD BELIEVES is the Gospel! The one which, according to the Lord Jesus, must be believed—HIS GOSPEL!! Do you honestly believe that Christ would encourage the belief of any gospel other than His own Gospel? And what do you think Christ is commanding that we repent of here? Just evil deeds and immoral acts? NO! Repent of false teachings which lead you to false gospels and the dishonoring of God and His Gospel! Its all connected isn’t it? Repent and believe. Of course it is. The call is to STOP believing a lie and START believing the Truth! The Scriptures say that the Christian is not to strive "...but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient" (2 Tim. 2:24). To what end must the believer display such gentleness, such meekness, as he speaks with those who oppose the Gospel? In the hope that God "...will give them repentance TO THE ACKNOWLEDGING OF THE TRUTH" (2 Tim. 2:25). "That they will perceive and recognize and become accurately acquainted with and acknowledge it." Do you believe that when Christ commanded people to "believe THE Gospel", He was referring to several different plans of salvation? Are you honestly of the opinion that if all the gospels, including the true Gospel, were laid at God’s feet and He was asked to point to the one which saves, that He would point to any other one than His own Gospel or to any other one as well as His own? Can you honestly say that you believe, in light of what Jesus has said concerning His Gospel—that it must be rightly preached and equally as rightly believed—that what you believe about His Gospel does not matter? How could what the Gospel of Christ be not matter? And when exactly did it begin to not matter? When exactly did it stop featuring prominently in what a man had to believe in order to be saved? Do you honestly think that Christ would encourage people to abide in the doctrines of a false gospel when, by the Holy Spirit working through the apostle John, He has stated that "Whosoever transgresseth and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God..." (2 Jn. 9 cf. Jn. 5:38). If you abide in anything that is not the doctrine of Christ, that is, if you abide in doctrines that form a false gospel, you simply do not, you cannot, have God! To deny this is to deny the essentiality of right doctrine—the right Gospel. What next? That one does not even require the right God!!! In your wildest imagination can you, in light of all this evidence, honestly conclude that ‘doctrine doesn’t matter’, that what the Gospel—that which one must believe in order to be saved—actually is ‘doesn’t matter’, and that God will save you even though you are ignorant of His Gospel and the fact that it is the only one which saves; that you do not believe His Gospel and have not repented of all others? Do you honestly believe that one could, with great vigor, trustingly hold and be faithful to a flawed gospel riddled with doctrinal blemishes, to what God has NOT said will save, and expect Christ to defend you to His Father, declaring you a believer in HIS Gospel? Could you imagine Christ saying, ‘This man did not believe your Gospel, Father, but he was a good man so could you save him anyway?’ Paul wrote in Romans 1:1: "Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the Gospel of God." Paul was not separated unto several gospels but to ONE Gospel, the Gospel of God. Being separated to the Gospel also meant that Paul was separated from every false gospel. He was kept, by the grace of God, from believing, and teaching, any of them. He was appointed by the Sovereign God to believe and preach only the Gospel of God, and this Gospel is the only one he ever preached whilst a servant of Christ. Paul also beseeched his hearers to "...mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrines which ye have learned; and avoid them. FOR THEY THAT ARE SUCH SERVE NOT OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple" (Rom. 16:17,18). Those who bring false gospels are the real troublemakers and Paul said that such people do not serve the Lord Jesus Christ but their own bellies, by which he meant: "Their own lusts; their own private interests; they do this to obtain support. The authors of parties and divisions, in church and state, have this usually in view. It is for the indulgence of some earthly appetite; to obtain office or property; or to gratify the love of dominion." Paul also warned the Philippian Christians of such people, calling them "...the enemies of the cross of Christ: Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things" (Phil. 3:18,19). What made a person an enemy of the cross of Christ is that they taught and believed a false gospel, which misrepresented what Christ had actually done on the cross, and for whom He had done it, thereby presenting a false savior.


Like Paul, all true Christians are separated unto the Gospel of God. AND THEY HAVE NEVER, AS CHRISTIANS, BEEN SEPARATED UNTO ANY OTHER GOSPEL! When God gets hold of you, there is only one Gospel He brings to you and that is His Gospel. Whether you have changed gospels once, twice or dozens of times, and however close you came to the truth, you can be sure that before you ever believed the true Gospel, belief in any of the others did not ever entitle you to heaven. No elect person was ever headed for heaven whilst believing in a false gospel. You are never a Christian before the faith that comes from God and that believes only His Gospel is given to you. Paul stated: "...I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ: for IT IS THE POWER OF GOD UNTO SALVATION..." (Rom. 1:16). Men may think it foolish, but however much Paul was ridiculed for his belief in that which man held in contempt, he was not ashamed of this Gospel for it was the very power of God unto the salvation of all His people. Only the Gospel of Christ has the power to save, all other gospels are impotent—POWER-LESS—because they are not of God. "This expression (power of God) means, that it (the Gospel) is the way in which God exerts His power in the salvation of men. It is the efficacious or mighty plan, by which power goes forth to save, and by which all the obstacles of man’s redemption are taken away." Needless to say, this power does not accompany false gospels, thereby making it impossible for anyone to be saved who believes in them. "This expression implies, (1) that it is God’s plan, or His appointment. It is not the device of man. (2) It is adapted to the end. It is fitted to overcome the obstacles in the way. It is not merely the instrument by which God exerts His power, but it has an inherent adaptedness to the end, and it is fitted to accomplish salvation to man, so that it may be denominated ‘power’. (3) It is mighty: hence it is called power, and the power of God. It is not a feeble and ineffectual instrumentality..." Not surprisingly, what has also been termed ‘the power of God’ in the Scriptures, is what His Gospel is all about: the doctrine of the cross. Without the true preaching of the cross you have no Gospel. "For THE PREACHING OF THE CROSS is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved IT IS THE POWER OF GOD" (1 Cor. 1:18). Notice to whom the preaching of the Cross, which is the nucleus of the Gospel, is foolishness to: "them that perish", them that believe not the Gospel but count it foolishness who chose to place their faith and trust in another. All those who deny the Gospel by refusing to believe the truth of Who Christ is, what He has done upon the cross and for whom He has done it, are those that perish. Conversely, those who are saved do not consider the doctrine of the cross, the Gospel, as foolishness, but all other gospels as foolish messages which cannot save. These are the saved people, the ones who believe that only the Gospel of God is the power of God unto salvation—or has the power to save—and that all other messages are powerless to save, nothing but lies fit only for the foolish. "Thus the preaching of the cross is the power of God; and every minister may present it with the assurance that he is presenting, not a cunningly devised fable, but a system really fitted to save men; and yet, that its reception by the human mind depends on the promised presence of the Holy Spirit." The preaching of the cross is the preaching of what Christ did there and for whom He did it. Paul referred to it a few verses later when he said: "...we preach Christ crucified..." (1 Cor. 1:23). To preach Christ and to believe Christ is not merely to preach and believe that He existed, but to preach and believe what He did. To believe that one can be saved by belief in something other than the only Gospel of God is to believe that the preaching of the cross, or the Gospel, is foolishness. To preach and believe what Christ did not do is to preach and believe another gospel. The Gospel of Christ, that which correctly sets forth the message of the cross, is the power of God unto salvation, and was the single message of salvation that Paul the apostle was not ashamed to preach or believe. It was the only Gospel he held to. All others were considered false, rebellious and perverted versions of that one and glorious single salvation statement of God.

 

 

 

 

 

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"...for in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the Gospel" (1 Cor. 4:15). Paul here states: "I have begotten you by preaching His Gospel and by His assistance. I was the instrument of your conversion. By means of the Gospel, by preaching it to you; that is, by the truth." There is no conversion lest the right Gospel, God’s Gospel, is preached. There is no conversion unless the truth has been heard and believed. A person cannot be born again unless they have heard and believed the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Not a counterfeit; not a fake, not another gospel, not one that is accurate except on a few issues, but CHRIST’S GOSPEL ALONE, the one that is accurate on ALL issues!! In accordance with such teaching, the apostle James says, "Of His own will BEGAT HE US WITH THE WORD OF TRUTH..." (Js. 1:18 cf. Eph. 1:11). God could not have begotten anyone without the Word of Truth. According to James, a Christian is begotten by God, not through the lies of men, not through false gospels, but only with the Truth of God: His Gospel. None ever became children of God whilst believing in a gospel that was not of God. No false preacher ever begat a genuine Christian by means of a false gospel. Just as a human father begets his sons by his seed, so too, God Almighty begets His sons via the means of His spiritual seed: the Gospel. This line of reasoning is also plainly evident in the writings of the apostle Peter who, like James and Paul, was also inspired by the Holy Spirit to write along the same lines when he said of his fellow believers: "Being BORN AGAIN, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible (seed), BY THE WORD OF GOD, which liveth and abideth forever...and this is the word which BY THE GOSPEL is preached unto you" (1 Pet. 1:23,25). The seed of God is the Gospel of God, without which there is no birth into His kingdom. Again, there is no conversion, there is no being born again but by the Gospel of God. (see the author’s book ‘Born of the Gospel’)