When God calls out His chosen ones He always calls them out by His Gospel from darkness to Light (see 1 Pet. 2:9 cf. Acts 26:18; 2 Thess. 2:13,14). The saved man is brought out of darkness, he is rescued from the curse of sin which has left every man by nature dead in sins and dead to God; dead to a proper and correct understanding of Who God is and how God saves. Not understanding the Gospel, or not believing it, is part of the curse of sin. This is why ignorance of the Gospel is the evidence of a lost soul. It all falls under the category of unbelief. Not believing the Gospel, as God proclaims it, is something which only a lost person is guilty of. The love and grace of God “…is now made manifest by the appearing of our Saviour Jesus Christ, Who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the Gospel” (2 Tim. 1:10). God’s people do not remain in darkness, but by grace are made free from its blinding effects (see 2 Cor. 4:4). The Word of God clearly teaches that to evidence having savingly received—been given—the Seed of God, one must hear it AND understand it, AND believe it. There is no other way to salvation than by the gifts of grace and faith. Ignorance of the Gospel is ignorance of Christ, and ignorance of the truth of the true Christ is absolute and conclusive evidence of a state of spiritual depravity. Again, Christ said of them which believed not on Him: “…He hath blinded their eyes, and hardened their heart; that they should not SEE with their eyes, nor UNDERSTAND with their heart, and be CONVERTED, and I should heal them” (Jn. 12:38-40 cf. Isa. 6:9,10; Matt. 13:15; Acts 28:27; 1 Cor. 2:9,10). One cannot see without sight, one cannot understand without faith, one cannot be a Christian without conversion. Biblical conversion is to be converted from being a believer in lies, to a believer in God’s truth: God’s Gospel. The apostle Paul warned “…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). A man whose trust is in another gospel, a false gospel which does not tell the truth of the true Christ, is as saved as the man who refused to look at the serpent on the pole was healed. Those who looked not upon the serpent on the pole were not healed, but died. So too, those who will not believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and trust in His obedience and death as revealed in His Gospel, will not be saved (see Num. 21:8,9 & Mk. 16:15,16). To say one was saved before exclusively believing in the Gospel of God, is to say that a man was healed before he beheld the serpent on the pole (see Jn. 3:14,15; Num. 21:8,9). A false gospel cannot produce a saved man, just as “…no lie is of the truth” (1 Jn. 2:21). “…what agreement hath the temple of God with idols?...” (2 Cor. 6:16). Many have an enormous zeal for God, but zeal for God is pointless, it is utterly profitless, if it is not according to the right, proper and accurate knowledge of God (see Rom. 10:1-4). Looking to anything else other than the serpent on the pole healed no one at all. Likewise, believing anything else other than the Gospel of Christ saves no one at all. Those who receive not the love of the truth, will not be saved (see 2 Thess. 2:10). The Judgement is “That they all might be damned who believed not the truth…” (2 Thess. 2:12).
Ignorance is not the way to God. Nor does ignorance draw the mercy of God, but rather His Wrath, for ignorance is a sign of accursedness. Ignorance of the Gospel of God is only evidenced in those who are lost. Ignorance of the Gospel of God as His only power unto salvation reveals the lost state of a man, and not a saved one. Ignorance is a sign that one does not know the Gospel, and, therefore, the God of the Gospel. Ignorance of the Gospel is evidence that one does not hear God’s voice, which in turn reveals that one does not believe His truth, that one does not recognize His truth as truth, and thus follows another’s voice, and so trusts in a false gospel. Truth is only controversial to those who do not believe it. Ignorance is not innocence. Ignorance of the true God is the result of man’s sin which has separated him from God. Ignorance of the true God is the partitioning wall built by sin which divides and keeps man from the true God. Ignorance is a sign of condemnation. Ignorance is a sign of guilt, the guilt which resides in all men by nature via the sin of Adam. Thought by many to be grounds for mercy, ignorance—when it comes to the matter of salvation—is the evidence of lostness. It is the evidence of a guilty and accursed creature. If the Gospel be hid, there can be no saving knowledge of the God of the Gospel. If a man is saved without knowledge, understanding and belief of the Gospel of God, then a man is saved without the Light of the glorious Gospel of Christ shining on him (see 2 Cor. 4:3,4).
As is the case of sincerity without truth, zeal for God without the right knowledge of God has never saved anyone. Zeal without the Gospel is zeal without God. Zeal without the Gospel of God is zeal toward a false god. Ignorance of the truth belies a trust in that which is untrue, and a mistrust and rejection of that which is true. Sincerity does not legitimize error. Longevity of belief does not legitimize error. Sincerity and longevity of belief, can, in no way, balance the scales, or counteract the sin of unbelief. False doctrines are never to be judged as right, or ascribed authenticity simply because the person who abides in them goes about doing good. The veracity and credibility of doctrines does not depend upon the good deeds and niceness, or lack thereof, of the person who believes them. Believing untruths about God which identify another god cannot save you, no matter your lifestyle. Whether ignorance is wilful, intentional, or unintentional, it is sin nonetheless. To be ignorant is to be lost. Ignorance = error = unbelief. Ignorance resides in a dark soul, a soul which has yet to be enlightened by the Gospel of Christ: “But if our Gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious Gospel of Christ, Who is the image of God, should shine unto them” (2 Cor. 4:3,4). Those who do not believe God’s Gospel are lost. They are the blind who walk in darkness, for they have never seen the Light. There is no excuse for the sin of ignorance, in not knowing the true God, for sin is that which caused the initial separation between man and God. Ignorance is a child of sin which is the sign of accursedness. Sin is that which has separated man from the true God, unto the warm, but deceptive embrace of ignorance. Ignorance provides warmth which will one day become a raging and eternal fire. Ignorance finds its origin in sin, for it is a product of sin, and, therefore, can only ever be evidence of a condemned soul.
"So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God" (Rom. 10:17). Saving Faith comes only when the Word of God is heard. The apostle Paul wrote that the Jews were lost because of their ignorance: "Brethren, my heart's desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved" (Rom. 10:1). Paul clearly states in this verse about the Jews not having salvation (see Rom. 10:1), because their zeal of God was not according to knowledge, the right and saving knowledge of God's Gospel, His Plan, or Way, of salvation. "For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge" (Rom. 10:2). Paul readily testified of the Jews' zeal of God, but he pointed out the major flaw they all had in that zeal, which was IGNORANCE. So, the question must be asked: if the Jews' zeal of God was not according to knowledge, what do you think it was according to? IGNORANCE! Why were they not saved? IGNORANCE! "For they being IGNORANT..." (see Romans 10:3).The Jews Paul wrote about, like so many today who claim to be God's people, had a zeal of God, but it was not according to the right knowledge of God, and, therefore, they could not have believed in the only Gospel of God.
The majority of this article was taken from my book 'A Reason and Purpose for Everything'.