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Modern Gospel from Modern Preachers!

The Gospel of Jesus and ... another from Paul?

               THE MODERN GOSPEL ... WHICH IS NOT THE GOSPEL


by Ken Walker


     I believe that I am safe in saying that we all want to see
our families, and especially our children, have salvation in
Christ. There is no greater gift that we can give than the gift
of God. The gift that I speak of is salvation.
     Most of us trust the teaching of matters of salvation to our
church and the leaders we have in our churches. The following is
what our children are hearing now. Do you agree?

"Jesus came to do three days work, to die, be buried and raised.
HE CAME NOT PRIMARILY TO PREACH THE GOSPEL ..... but he came
rather that there might be a gospel to preach." [1]

"The word Gospel occurs over one hundred times in the New
Testament .... What then is the Gospel of the Grace of God? Let
us ask Paul. He would point us to 1 Corinthians 15:1-4: 'I
declare unto you the Gospel which I preached unto you... that
Christ died for our sins, that he was buried, and that he rose
the third day' ... Paul never discussed the earthly life of our
Lord... The fact that the Lord Jesus died to save us is one half
of the gospel! The fact that He rose from the dead ... is the
other half of the Gospel" [2]

     Many within the Church of God do agree with these statements
or at least will say that they have no fundamental problems with
those statements. In fact some of the Church of God 7th Day
ministers have worked with and for the organization that made
these statements or other organizations that teach the same
fundamental belief. They have helped in evangelical efforts
because "they are bringing people to Jesus and that is what we
need to do."
     This thought process seems fundamentally sound at first.
However upon closer examination we find that this belief and
teaching has caused splits within our churches. Some ministers
have left us over this belief. This friction happens when some
within the church state that they believe that obedience to God's
Commandments is part of the salvation package, as Christ taught
and God demands.

     This is not a new "conflict" The battle for supremacy of the
"modern Jesus" has been going on for several hundred years.
A quotation from the writer, C.S. Lewis, will point out the
fundamental and amazing misconception of the heart of mainline
Christianity.... "The (New Testament) epistles are for the most
part the earliest Christian documents we possess. The Gospels
came later. THEY ARE NOT THE GOSPEL, THE STATEMENT OF CHRISTIAN
BELIEF. In that sense the epistles are more primitive and more
central to the Christian belief" [3]

     This kind of thought process shoves Matthew, Mark and Luke
and the earthly ministry of Christ into storage. This is a real
problem. We have created a dilemma in which the Scripture has to
submit itself to be judged by us with the following criteria; is
it in accord with OUR doctrine of justification by faith alone?

     It is not our job to make the Scripture submit to our own
process of selection. In the first place you will not find our
word "alone" anywhere close to the word "faith" in the Bible.
That has been handed down to us under the heading of "Man's
Traditions". God never told us that it was by faith alone.
In Hebrews 11  God said that... "without faith it is impossible
to please Him" ... but He never said it was by "Faith ALONE." In
fact if you read the 11th Chapter of Hebrews, commonly called the
"faith chapter," you will find that it is full of ACTION! It is
full of deeds, actions, and works. Hebrews 11 tells us that Faith
is EVIDENCE. Evidence is something that is tangible and can be
seen. Evidence is something that is convincing to those people
who are looking on or studying the situation.
 
     How would we show "faith alone" to the world around us?
After all we are supposed to be lights to the world around us are
we not? That means we are meant to be seen. Would we sit on a
street corner with a beard and in sackcloth and ashes holding up
a sign that read "I have faith alone"? Would that be sufficient
evidence for the world and for God? We need to think about the
reality of what we are saying and believing.

     When we receive man's tradition and place it ahead of God's
Words, it can lead to many strange beliefs. When we add to God's
word we often change the entire meaning of the Scriptures. This
will lead us to strange thought processes like the following from
leading theologian, R. Bultmann:

"What can be said about the historical Jesus belongs to the realm
of Christ according to the flesh. THAT CHRIST HOWEVER DOES NOT
CONCERN US. WHAT WENT ON WITHIN JESUS' HEART I DO NOT KNOW AND I
DO NOT WANT TO KNOW." [4]

     Or perhaps this from a tract on Unitarian Universalistic
views of Jesus:

"...I'm for a better and better Jesus, BORN FROM THE ASPIRING
HEART OF HUMANITY." J. G. MacKinnon

     These are not just isolated occurrences. This trend towards
setting the Pauline Epistles and the Book of John above the rest
of the Gospels and relegating Matthew, Mark and Luke to the dusty
back shelf has created a false Messiah. We have just given you a
very strong statement but Jesus Himself wondered if He would find
faith on the earth when He will return. (Luke 18:8)
(The Greek is "THE faith..." - Keith Hunt)

     The history of Christianity should make every believer
tremble with fear and raise warning flags inside of us.
     Throughout the history of the church of the last two
thousand years we see a steady departure away from the historical
Jesus. How can we so easily ignore the fact that from the
writings of Paul in his epistles we find that he firmly stated
that we have only one mediator between us and God: It is "THE MAN
CHRIST JESUS" (1 Timothy 2:5).

     If the MAN CHRIST JESUS is our only mediator then should we
not be very concerned with what this man had to say and what He
did?
     From a theological standpoint, and most assuredly from a
moral standpoint it is not enough to simply point out that there
was a death and a resurrection at some point in time. We need to
concentrate on the specific, historical man, Christ Jesus.

     Who was this man that the Romans crucified and why did they
kill Him if He was innocent? Why did God allow this? Why did God
raise Jesus from the dead? What message was Jesus trying to get
across to us that got Him killed? These are all questions that
every believer and every theologian, should ask.

     Revelation 12:17 explains to us that Satan (the great
Dragon) is at war with the Church and the Pauline Epistles back
up this fact. We know that Satan is the great deceiver
(Revelation 12:9) We also know that our own heart (spirit) is
desperately wicked (Jeremiah 17:9).
(Correctly understood "can be" desperately wicked - Keith Hunt)

     We have to realize that one of Satan's strategies in his war
with the Church of God (you and me), would be to get us to a
position where we lean on our own understanding. This is the
exact opposite of what God said to do. God said to "...lean not
to our own understanding." (Proverbs 3:5)
     What would Satan have to do to accomplish this? He would
have to separate Jesus from the truth of the Bible, which
includes Jesus' own teachings, in our mind and understanding.
Satan's counterfeit would be very subtle as not to raise
suspicion in us. This would then play on our greatest weakness
which is our own spirit.
     If Satan could separate Jesus from Jesus' own teachings in
Matthew, Mark and Luke it would go a long ways towards
accomplishing this goal. Then perhaps Satan could create a
culture where the "Name of Jesus" would become more of a symbol
than a reality for our sinful natures.
     This thought process would then lead to statements like the
following from John Walvoord, who has this to say about the
Sermon on the Mount:

"...That it is suitable to point an unbeliever to salvation in
Christ is plainly not the intention of this message .... The
Sermon on the Mount as a whole IS NOT CHURCH TRUTH PRECISELY..."
[5]

FACT: 
     The Jesus that we claim as our Savior has to be anchored
solidly in the man, Christ Jesus, The Jesus that walked this
earth. That Jesus is the One that God sent and told us personally
"....THIS IS MY BELOVED SON, in whom I am well pleased, HEAR YE
HIM." (Matthew 17:5)

     Then if we add "How shall we escape if we neglect so great
SALVATION; WHICH AT THE FIRST BEGAN TO BE SPOKEN BY THE LORD,
(Jesus) and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him;...
Therefore we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things
which we have heard, lest at any time we should let them slip"
(Hebrews 2:3,1).
     We are well aware that this modern theological trend has
given us their reason for separating the teachings of Jesus out
of the salvation message. The claim is that Jesus taught a Jewish
message up to the cross and then Paul was given the "Gospel of
Grace" to teach to the gentiles (world).
     If you do not believe that this is a dominant thought then
consider this. On page 987 of the NEW SCHOFIELD BIBLE that is
read by millions, it states that a "...strong legal and Jewish
coloring is to be expected up to the cross." Do you see how
subtle this is? This sets the stage for the false teaching that
Jesus had a different Gospel than the Apostle Paul had. You
cannot find any place in the Scriptures that Jesus taught a
Jewish gospel and then gave a new Gospel to Paul. Jew and Gentile
are saved the same way. The Scriptures teach that we are all
saved equally under the New Covenant.

     The source of this theology can be traced back to Luther and
Calvin. They went away from the gospel of Matthew, Mark and Luke
on purpose because of Anti-Catholic and Anti-Semitic feelings.
Modern theologians have followed this trend since that time and
follow their anti-Semitic teaching.

     The simple truth is that the entire New Testament teaching
about faith is Jewish in nature (Romans 3:1,2; 9:4,5) because
"...Unto them was committed the oracles of God..." as Romans 3:
1,2 tells us. See also Romans 9:3-5. The NEW COVENANT WAS MADE
WITH ISRAEL FIRST. Paul explains that very well in the book of
Romans.

     Let us get hack to the message of Jesus and preach the
Gospel as God commanded. Then and only then, can we expect the
true blessings of God upon us, our organization and our efforts.
That same New Covenant that was made with Israel was also given
to the rest of the world. It is so simple. The modern
"evangelical Gospel" divides the Gospel of Jesus from the Gospel
of the Apostle Paul. That is a serious error. Let us look at
reality.

     Mark 1:14,15 very plainly tells us the following:

"Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee
PREACHING THE GOSPEL OF THE KINGDOM OF GOD. And saying 'The time
is fulfilled and the Kingdom of God is at hand; repent ye, and
BELIEVE THE GOSPEL.'"

     Matthew 4:23 tells us:

"And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues,
and PREACHING THE GOSPEL OF THE KINGDOM..."

Luke 4:43 gives Jesus' own testimony to us:

 "And He said unto them 'I MUST PREACH THE KINGDOM OF GOD to
other cities also, for therefore am I sent.'" (See also Matt.
9:35; 24:14; Acts 8:12; 19:8; 20:25; 28:23,31)

     The Gospel that Jesus was teaching and is still teaching is
the GOSPEL OF THE KINGDOM OF GOD.

     Make no mistake about it. The story of the death and
resurrection of Jesus is one of the pillars of the Gospel.

     However, that is not the whole story. It is only the
beginning. That part of the story is the keys to the Kingdom that
opens the door to the Kingdom of God. Belief in that story is how
we enter into the Kingdom of God. (John 14:6). Belief in the
Story of the death and resurrection of the Man Christ Jesus - is
the door to our Salvation.
     However the Kingdom of God is so much more than just opening
a door. We are now citizens (Ephesians 2:19) of a different
Kingdom. The Apostle Paul tells us in Colossians 1:13 that God
has delivered us frorn Satan's power and has "translated us into
the Kingdom of His dear Son." This is the Kingdom that Jesus
preached and taught while on earth.

     The Gospel that Jesus gave to us, tells us not only how to
enter but how to maintain our citizenship within His Kingdom
after we have entered. Jesus taught us how to live here and now
in full obedience to God. Jesus is preparing His people to meet
their God.

     Paul said, "For the GRACE OF GOD THAT BRINGETH SALVATION
hath appeared to all men, TEACHING US that denying ungodliness
and worldly lusts, we should LIVE SOBERLY, RIGHTEOUSLY, AND GODLY
IN THIS PRESENT WORLD"!!! (Titus 2:11,12).

     The Gospel of the Kingdom of God was, and still is, Jesus'
message to us from beginning to end. He taught about the Kingdom
in the Sermon on the Mount. He taught about the Kingdom in the
Lord's Prayer, which is our model prayer. He taught about the
Kingdom of God as proof of His Messiahship in Matthew 12:28.
     In the parable of the sower and the seed in Matthew 13 Jesus
taught about the Kingdom of God. In fact the message of salvation
(the seed) was the message of the Kingdom in these parables.
     When Jesus rebuked the chief priests and leaders in Matthew
21 He taught about the Kingdom of God. Jesus thereby signaled to
the leadership and to mankind that the GOSPEL OF SALVATION IS THE
GOSPEL OF THE KINDOM OF GOD.

     When Jesus was prophesying of the future for His followers
He taught about the Kingdom of God. Jesus stated emphatically
that "... THIS GOSPEL (meaning His Gospel) OF THE KINGDOM SHALL
BE PREACHED IN ALL OF THE WORLD ... And then the end shall come"
(Matthew 24:14).

     As Jesus was preparing His followers for His soon coming
death He taught them about the Kingdom of God. Jesus told them
that when He returned they "...would inherit the Kingdom prepared
for you from the foundation of the world" (Matthew 25:34).

     In Acts 1:1-3 where we are told that Jesus taught the same
thing AFTER HIS RESURECTION?

"The former treatise have I made O Theophilus of ALL THAT JESUS
BEGAN TO BOTH DO AND TEACH. (Recorded in Luke) UNTIL THE DAY IN
WHICH HE WAS TAKEN UP (no change recorded) ... He shewed Himself
alive after His passion by many infallible proofs, being seen of
them forty days, and SPEAKING OF THE THINGS PERTAINING TO THE
KINGDOM OF GOD."

     It is the same message after Jesus' resurrection. No Change.
The Gospel of Jesus Christ was the same from beginning to end. It
is the Gospel of the Kingdom of God. This is what Jesus wants us
to preach. That, is what makes it the message of salvation.
Paul was personally taught by Jesus (Galatians 1:12). Modern
theologians would have us to believe that Paul gave us a
different message since he was sent to the Gentiles. Was it
different? Let Paul tell us in his own words. In Paul's farewell
address to the Ephesians we hear Paul's own testimony of what he
taught:

"And now, behold, I know that ye all, AMONG WHOM I HAVE GONE
PREACHING THE KINGDOM OF GOD, shall see my face no more.
Wherefore I take you to record this day, that I am pure from the
blood of all men. For I HAVE NOT SHUNNED TO DECLARE UNTO YOU ALL
THE COUNSEL OF GOD" (Acts 20: 25-27).

     The Apostle Paul spent his last 2 years teaching the Gospel.
We are told what he taught in Acts 28:30,31:

"And Paul dwelt two whole years in his own hired house and
received all that came in unto him, PREACHING THE KINGDOM OF GOD
and teaching those things which concern the Lord Jesus Christ,
with all confidence, no man forbidding him."

     With a death sentence hanging over him, Paul taught the
Gospel of the Kingdom, as Jesus had taught him to do. It is the
same Gospel of the Kingdom that Jesus taught, Read in Acts 8:12
what Philip, under the power of the Holy Spirit taught to those
that God sent to him. Can we do any less?

     After Jesus' death nothing could be changed. (Galatians
3:15). We need to quit bringing in man's thoughts and traditions
under the umbrella of "new light." Let us get back to the message
of Jesus and preach the Gospel as God commanded. Then and only
then, can we expect the true blessings of God upon us, our
organization and our efforts.
..........

From "ACTS" July/August 2009 - a publication of the Churches of
God, 7th Day - Meridian, ID. USA.


Kenneth Walker is the Director of Missions for the GENERAL
COUNCIL. Ken resides in Missouri with his wife and 2 children.
They attend the Marceline Missouri Church and Ken speaks there
occasionally. Ken is also the speaker for the Missouri Watchman
radio program which is currently airing in Nigeria, Africa.

[1] Tract entitled "What is the Gospel" by The Billy Graham
Evangelistic Association
[2] Roy Gustafson, Billy Graham Association
[3] J.B.Phillips "Letters to Young Churches," Fontana Books,
Introduction pp 9,10
[4] Cited by G.R.Beasley-Murray in the "Kingdom of God and
Christology in the Gospels" in "Jesus of Nazareth: Lord and
Christ" ed. By J.B.Green and M.Turner, Grand Rapids: Eerdmans,
1994, p.23
[5] Matthew: "Thy Kingdom Come" Moody Press, 1984, pp 44,45

NOTE:

It is indeed the highest perversion to teach that the GOSPEL of
Christ and the GOSPEL of Paul were two DIFFERENT Gospels! NOTHING
COULD BE FURTHER FROM THE TRUTH!!
Why do "modern" preachers teach such perversion? It is to uphold
their teaching and practice of Sunday (the 1st day of the week)
as the Sabbath (even then most modern theology teachers don't
teach you should try and keep Sunday holy), and they want to
uphold Christmas, Easter, as replacing the Passover and other
"feasts of the Lord" as outlined in Leviticus 23. Hence they must
come up with a crazy theology that states the Gospel of Paul was
different from the Gospel of Christ. Such is the foolishness and
perversion of modern theology teachers.

Keith Hunt

 
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