5 Markers That Identify the True Gospel
We are living in a day and age where the gospel and the message of the gospel is under attack. It has been twisted, cajoled, and reshaped into something that is foreign to the message we find in the Bible. This problem is not new because even in Paul’s day there were those who were peddling another gospel.
The message of the gospel is not just that Jesus came and died. It must also include that he rose again.
The fact that Jesus lived a sinless life and died a horrible death means nothing if all he did was die and remain dead. All that would have proved is that Jesus was human. What separates him from everyone else and what gives us the hope we have in the gospel is he didn’t just die, he rose again.
The real hope that is found in the gospel is we serve a risen savior who not only conquered our sin, but also conquered death, hell, and the grave. No other religion even professes to have a risen savior; all their founders have bodies lying in a tomb. Jesus is the only one who has risen and remains alive forevermore. This is the hope of the gospel.
The true gospel requires faith in Jesus Christ alone for salvation, and requires nothing else. The moment you add any additional step – regardless of how small or insignificant it may seem – it ceases being the gospel and quickly moves from grace to works.
The work Jesus did through his death and resurrection is a completed work. Since the work has all been done, all that is required is for you to put your total faith and trust in the finished work of Jesus. There is nothing more that needs to be added because there is nothing more that can be added.
It doesn’t matter who it is or who is preaching, if they add one thing to the message of the gospel it is another gospel. They could be bishop so and so, apostle whatever, or pastor what’s his name, it doesn’t matter because if they preach a gospel different than this, it is no gospel at all. To underscore the seriousness of this matter, listen to what Paul says about those who preach another gospel.
You don’t have to be afraid of anyone who preaches another gospel, because what they preach is not the true gospel and it cannot save you anyway. Christ plus anything is not the gospel and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.
When you really understand the gospel, you understand the strength in the message. I know we live in a day and age where we like to find creative ways to share the gospel, often skating around things like sin or the need for a savior. You don’t have to do that. Simply share the gospel as it is and there is enough power in that to change a person’s life forever.
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Clarence L. Haynes Jr. is a speaker, Bible teacher, and co-founder of The Bible Study Club. He is the author of The Pursuit of Purpose which will help you understand how God leads you into his will. He has also just released his new book The Pursuit of Victory: How To Conquer Your Greatest Challenges and Win In Your Christian Life. Do you want to go deeper in your walk with the Lord but can’t seem to overcome the stuff that keeps getting in the way? This book will teach you how to put the pieces together so you can live a victorious Christian life and finally become the man or woman of God that you truly desire to be. To learn more about his ministry please visit clarencehaynes.com.