Tuesday, June 29, 2010

I am believing a false gospel

Sunday at church I was overwhelmed by the message that was preached to us. The guest speaker, Jim Essian, talked about the gospel. He taught us from Galatians 2:1-10 where Paul is writing to the new church giving them instructions. He talked about the simplicity of the gospel and how all that is needed is for us to believe and then accept what God is giving us...a new identity in Him.

However....and a BIG however at that...we LOVE to add to that simple gospel, as the Christ-following Jews did. They wanted to add circumcision to make their salvation complete. We like to add things too. We like to add to the gospel our standards of things, like dress, and music, alcohol beliefs, what a great christian mom looks like, etc. Essentially, when we add ANYTHING to the gospel whatsoever we are believing in a false gospel. I don't know about you, but I was SO taken aback from the idea. How many days do I feel down for not being something I think I should be? When I focus on anything I do, I am NOT focusing on what Christ did. I am beleiving a false gospel. I cannot save myself by my "good" deeds. Wasn't Christ's sacrifice on the cross abundantly more than enough? Why do I feel the need to even TRY to earn it? Foolishness!!!

He talked about the fact that he was from Jersey, born and raised in church. He came here to Texas loving the Lord and wanting to church plant. One of the first questions he encountered was when he prayed the "sinner's prayer." Huh??? He didn't even know what that was! He searched scripture...couldn't find it. Many of the believers he met were asking him how he even knew he was saved if he hadn't prayed this prayer. Friends...this is adding a formula to the gospel. We are adding to what God tells us to do. This man was in love with Jesus and people were questioning his salvation because he hadn't participated in a ritual created in the Bible belt.

See, false gospels are sneaky, they often have a christian label. Anytime we make a rule (law) for ourselves, we're adding. False gospels lead to slavery, but Jesus said that, "It is for freedom that (I) set you free."

Now Paul and I try to teach the gospel to our children daily. We consider nothing more important. But not only do we need to build the gospel into their lives, we also need to protect it. Protect their hearts and minds from having anything added to the gospel they believe.

Isn't God enough? Isn't His finished work on the cross enough? Could we ever earn it in a million years of toiling for it? No. Just rest in Him and be thankful, not adding anything. Out of this right mindset flow all kinds of good things...freedom to serve Him and others they way God intended us to do, freely and with confidence, boasting only in the cross of Jesus Christ, and not in ourselves or our filthy rags.


Rochelle said...

Great post, Tamra and so true! Thanks for sharing...Blessings~Rochelle

Gabrielle said...

This is very encouraging; what a good daily reminder. Thank you!

Anonymous said...

Didn't know I needed to read that as much as I did. Thanks for sharing!

Kelly Marler said...

Preach it girl! Love it! So true on many points!The only truth is in the word and no man can tell me different or add to it. And, we must teach our children to go to the Bible and God himself for the truth! God's way is the only way, and we as Christians need to know the word and be bold in what we know to be true in Christ! Thanks for sharing!