WHY PREACH THE TRUTH?
The whole purpose of teaching is to instruct people in the right way, and to distinguish the right way from the wrong ways, proving why the truth is the truth and why anything which contradicts it, is not. To teach is to declare the truth, and prove why it is the truth thus leading people away from wrong thoughts and an erroneous understanding of what it is, thus exposing error. The right way has its consequences, and the wrong way has its consequences. And when it comes to the Gospel of God, right teaching and wrong teaching is a matter of what God has said, and what God has not said—The Truth of God and the lies of men, "...the Spirit of Truth, and the spirit of error" (1 Jn. 4:6). What God has said is right, and what God has not said is wrong. If you believe what God has said, you are right. You have the Truth. If you do not believe what God has said, but only what is claimed God has said, you are wrong because you believe in that which is not God's Truth. You are an unbeliever, and Scripture declares you a liar and a false witness of the true God rather than a believer in Him (see 1 Jn. 5:10 & 1 Cor. 15:14,15).
Salvation is all about knowing God, believing in the true God, and not in a false god which cannot save. To believe in the true God is to believe in the doctrines of the Gospel of the grace of God in the salvation of His people. Without the true knowledge of God there can be no salvation. The true knowledge of Who God is, what God has done and for whom He has done it. The knowledge of the Gospel of God. To know and believe the true God is to know and believe the true Gospel of God which is to know and believe the true doctrines of that Gospel which reveal, define and distinguish the true God and His true Christ from all impostors. The Gospel of God is revealed to all God's people. All God's chosen are given eyes to see and ears to hear. By Grace they are granted the gift of Faith by God to believe His Gospel, and reject all others. That is, to believe the truth about God and how He saves, and to reject the lies about Him contained in gospels which are not of God, and which are only believed in with the faith that is natural to all men.
The Gospel of Christ is God's Instrument by which He delivers the doctrines of Truth about Christ which is essential to a saving knowledge of Him. "According as His Divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him that hath called us to glory and virtue" (2 Pet. 1:3). Without the knowledge of the doctrines of the Gospel of God's Grace there can be no salvation. The apostle Paul states "But if our Gospel be hid (veiled, not known), it is hid to them that are lost" (2 Cor. 4:3). Without the knowledge of the Gospel of God and the Faith with which to savingly believe it, there can be no salvation. Paul prayed: “Brethren, 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). “…though they had a zeal of God, they knew neither God nor Christ aright; they did not know God in Christ, nor Jesus to be the true Messiah; they understood neither law nor Gospel truly, and fancied the Gospel was contrary to the law, and an enemy to it; and therefore in their great zeal opposed it, and the professors of it; they were zealous of the law, and of doing the commands of it, but knew not the true nature, use, and end of the law; as appears by what follows.” A zeal for the 'idea', or 'concept' of 'God' will do a man no good if he is not blessed with a true recognition of the true and only God. "...Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God" (Rom. 10:17). Faith does not, indeed cannot, come without the hearing of the Word of God's Gospel. One cannot believe that which one has no knowledge of. The Gospel of God must be preached to every creature, for salvation cannot take place before, or without, the hearing and believing of the Gospel of God. The apostle Paul writing to the Christians at Ephesus noted that their trusting in Christ occurred "...after that ye heard the Word of Truth, the Gospel of your salvation: in Whom also after ye believed, ye were sealed with that Holy Spirit of promise" (Eph. 1:13).
Christ commanded "...repent ye, and believe the Gospel" (Mk. 1:15). Faith and repentance are inseparable. The gift of repentance from God always brings with it the acknowledgment of the truth of God, and does not leave anyone in a perpetual state of rejection of it, or ignorance concerning it. "...if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth" (2 Timothy 2:25). A repentance which does not acknowledge the truth of God, is not the gift of repentance which God gives to all His people. No acknowledgement of God's Gospel = no true repentance = no salvation. One cannot properly acknowledge the truth without rejecting error. If a person claims to believe God's true Gospel, and yet still clings to any false gospel, or to even one of its false doctrines they previously believed rather than rejecting it as having any power to save, then they cannot be a true believer in God's Gospel as being His ONLY power unto salvation (see Rom. 1:16). "Paul, a servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to THE Faith of God's elect, and the acknowledging of the truth which is after godliness" (Titus 1:1). Notice that there is only one Faith which is common to the elect of God (see also Jude 3), and only with that gift of Faith can one savingly acknowledge the truth of God "Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth" (1 Timothy 2:4 cf. Romans 10:2; Philippians 3:8). Again, we see the connection between salvation and knowledge. Importantly, knowledge does not gain us salvation. Knowledge does not save anyone, but it is the evidence, or fruit, of salvation. Anyone can claim to know and believe in the true answer to a mathematical equation, but only those who do know it, and can actually tell you what the true answer is, are they who can provide the necessary evidence to be judged correct.
There is no salvation without the knowledge of the Truth of God. Knowledge does not save anyone, but no one is saved without it. Ignorance is darkness, saving knowledge is light. To be saved is to pass from spiritual darkness to the Light of the glorious Gospel of Christ, the knowledge of His Truth (see 2 Corinthians 4:3,4). Look carefully at Titus 1:1-3 and notice the distinct, and unmistakable connection between “…the FAITH of God's elect; the ACKNOWLEDGING of the TRUTH; GODLINESS; in hope of ETERNAL LIFE; and manifested His WORD through PREACHING…” The Faith which is given to everyone of God's elect is given so that they will all acknowledge the Truth of God, trust and believe in the true God and His only Way to salvation, rather than continue in ignorance and rejection of it, or to forever speculate as to what it could be as those of the world do who know not God. To be a true Christian is to KNOW! To be a true Christian one must believe, but one cannot believe if one does not know. In Romans 10, Paul asks how can any call on the true God if they do not believe on Him; and how can any rightly believe on Him if they have not heard of Him: "...and how shall they hear without a preacher?" (Rom. 10:14). And what is it which they must hear? Paul continues "...How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the Gospel of peace..." (Rom. 10:15).
Now, if salvation does not hinge upon belief of God's Gospel of peace then the truth simply would not matter at all, and, therefore, needs not be preached. If actually believing what God has said concerning salvation does not matter, then truth is relative, indeed, what God says about salvation, His Son, the Gospel becomes merely a relative thing. Truth would not be what God says, but only what a person believes it to be. Consequently, the truth would be judged right or wrong as each individual saw fit. Truth would be judged according to a person’s perspective, how a person thinks, rather than by what God says it is. Thus the truth of God would not need to be preached and believed for a man to be saved, for he could just believe what he wants to believe and be saved regardless as long as ‘his heart is in the right place’, and his intentions ‘good’. Believing God's Truth and believing a man's lies, would all amount to the same thing. If all this were true, the truth of what God has done, of how He saves, indeed, of Who God is, would not be important enough to figure in the salvation of anyone, for what a man believes the truth to be would be equal to what God says the truth is. The fact of the matter is that if God has said something, the onus is on man to believe it because you can be guaranteed that what God speaks is Truth, the whole Truth and nothing but the Truth, for God is Truth (see Jn. 14:6). “…the Spirit is Truth” (1 Jn. 5:6). “…Thy Word is Truth” (Jn. 17:17). Not believing what God has said will have dire and eternal consequences: "...in them that perish; because they received not the love of the Truth, that they might be saved....That they all might be damned who believed not the Truth..." (2 Thess. 2:10,12). Couple these two Scriptures with the following words of Christ Jesus Himself, and you begin to see a clear picture of the essentiality of hearing, knowing and believing the Truth of God. The Lord's command to His people is to preach the Gospel to every creature: "He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned" (Mk. 16:16).
No one has ever profited by not believing the Word of God, so how can any say that to not believe the Gospel, but to believe error concerning it, i.e. another gospel, will still save a person. This line of argument goes far beyond the boundaries of Scriptural reasoning. I mean, why preach the truth at all! Why warn of false preachers who come with false doctrines (see Matt. 24:24; 1 Jn. 4:1) if one can be just as saved by believing the lies they teach as one is in believing what true men of God who preach His Gospel say? The main reason why teaching is necessary at all is the fact that the Word of God is the very instrument through which God expresses His Truth concerning His Son in the salvation of His people. This Truth is encapsulated in the Gospel of God. The Gospel of God reveals the true and only God. It shows Who He is, what He has done and for whom He has done it. The Gospel of God at once shows what was necessary to the salvation of God's people, and exactly what and Who a saved man trusts. The Gospel of God is the Truth of God, and everything outside of that Gospel forms part of a gospel which the God of Truth has simply not authored. Any gospel which contradicts any doctrine of the true Gospel does not represent, or present, the true God.
Another reason why preaching and teaching the Gospel of God is necessary is because there is right and wrong, and the purpose behind proving that which is right as right is so a person will acknowledge and enjoy the Truth of God, and reject the lies about God which present themselves as truth. So that a person will enjoy the benefits of being blessed of God to believe the truth, as opposed to believing error and remaining in an accursed state for all eternity. But if whether one believes truth or error does not matter, that it is not the prime evidence of salvation, then there is no reason why anyone should teach anything, for believing whatever one believes to be the truth, as opposed to what the Truth of God actually is, would be one and the same thing! Therefore, a man can be saved regardless of whether he believes God's Testimony of His Son, or another's testimony of Him, or simply your own idea, or version, of Him! "Thus, in common with a fundamental tenet of the New Gnosticism—that there is no objective reality"—the Gospel can be anything a person wants it to be, and thus Who God is and how God saves would go from being Scriptural fact to something which would be open to interpretation. Trusting in a lie does not a saved man make. Let us all live in and for existential experiences and form our own doctrines and believe what we want to believe, is the rebellious cry of the 21st century. Thus we see the aim of Satan: to create a worldwide religious climate where there are virtually no rules, no Standard of belief, where the lines between right and wrong, truth and falsehood, between true Gospel doctrine and the lies of false gospels, become so blurred as to make them indivisible. Where a man's views rather than God's Truth reign in the hearts of all men. Where God’s truth is discarded, and replaced with what a man deems the truth to be.
When Christ Jesus the Lord commanded His people to "...preach the Gospel to every creature" (Mk. 16:15), He made no mention that preaching the Gospel of God meant what anyone thought, assumed, or presumed the Gospel to be. Not even the slightest hint was given that the Gospel of God was of any private interpretation, or even to the remotest possibility of there being more than one Gospel that is the power of God to save. Christ made reference only to THE GOSPEL, God's Gospel, the one and only Gospel by which God saves. God's Gospel reveals what a person must believe to show they are saved, that they have God-given faith to trust and believe only in God and His only Way to salvation, that they have eternal life. Only belief in the Gospel of God is the sure sign of salvation "...for it (the Gospel) is the power of God unto salvation...FOR THEREIN is the Righteousness of God revealed..." (Rom. 1:16,17 cf. Rom. 10:1-4). God does not save any other way. Christ also had a very clear message to those who will not believe HIS Gospel: "...he that believeth not shall be damned" (Mk. 16:16). This Scripture ties in perfectly with the apostle Paul's inspired declaration that "...if our Gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are LOST" (2 Cor. 4:3; 1 Jn. 5:10-13).
Therefore, we see clearly that the Truth, God's Holy Gospel Message concerning His grace in the salvation of His people through the Righteousness of His Son, must be preached by His people to every creature. This being the case, it stands to biblical reason that all His people must know and believe in the only Gospel they have been commissioned to preach. The Truth must be heard to be known and believed (see Rom. 10:10-17). If truth matters at all then the Gospel of God matters. If believing simple truths like the correct answer to 2 + 2 is 4 matters, then it surely must matter what the true Gospel of God is. It matters what God's answers are to the questions, ‘What must I do to be saved?’; 'Who is Jesus?'; 'What did He do and For whom did He do it?’ There is no salvation present in one's life if that life is free of the knowledge and Faith of God's Gospel by which God saves. If one believes and trusts in a gospel other than God’s Gospel. As in the world of mathematics where no one is right if they do not have the correct answer, so too, in God's reality no one is saved unless they are believers in God's only power to save: His Gospel. This is not about intelligence, doctrinal regeneration, or salvation by knowledge, but of REVELATION! Believing God's Gospel and rejecting, repenting of, all others is the evidence that God has revealed His Gospel by His Holy Spirit to the heart and mind of a man.
"...Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God" (Rom. 10:17).
REPENT AND BELIEVE THE GOSPEL OR YOU WILL DIE IN YOUR SINS