The Truth of the Gospel
The Prophetic Rhetoric
But we did not yield in subjection to them for even an hour, so that the truth of the gospel would remain with you. Gal. 2:5
[I]f indeed you continue in the faith firmly established and steadfast, and not moved away from the hope of the gospel that you have heard… Col. 1:23
It is said that “familiarity breeds contempt.” Applied to spiritual truth, it can more accurately be said that “familiarity breeds ignorance.” That is, we may over time become so familiar with spiritual truth that the understanding becomes replaced by assumption of understanding, which is not understanding at all, but a hollow appearance of knowledge by assent. The assent however is void of substance, being but ignorance under a veneer of comprehension.
Such is the case with the truth of the gospel in the modern prophetic church. After 2000 years since first release, the term “gospel” is now one of assumed knowledge void of actual substance. The “gospel” is professed to be believed, but is nevermore defined or exposited. It is now a term of disguised ignorance, everywhere affirmed, but virtually nowhere understood as originally apostolically preached and taught. Instead, heaped atop that shell are now “mountains” of prophetic fad terminologies—“global transformation,” “atmospheric change,” “ekklesia”—each proffering itself in its moment as the “power of God unto salvation.”
Paul, the arch articulator of the gospel to the western world, brought forth this issue in his very first letter, the letter to the Galatians. Within his passionately declared intent that “the truth of the gospel would remain with you,” he tells us three things:
1) the truth of the gospel can indeed be lost among God’s own people,
2) the truth of the gospel applies to the ongoing salvation of the believer (not just to bringing people to first faith) and
3) the gospel must remain divorced from definition by and promotion of all fleshly heritage.
In other words, he warns us that the truth of the gospel can become assumptively known only, lose its significance to the believer and be replaced by false definitions that bind us to dead human culture. This can all happen either absent of the Spirit (as it did in Galatia) or through deception under the auspices of the Laodicean Spirit and “the Presence” (as is happening now.)
Paul’s gospel takes the believer “from faith to faith”—firstly faith for salvation from sin’s penalty, to faith for saving from sin’s power and bondage under fleshly heritage (where alone disciples are made), finally to salvation from this mortal body through a transcendent raceless, nationless glorified body. It is one gospel whose truth effects a power of complete multi-fold salvation found in Christ alone.
But the record of church history tells us the sad story of the gospel’s diluting and then eventual abandoning through assumed familiarity. The diluting of the gospel was manifested first by becoming defined only in terms of the power to save unbelievers from sin’s penalty. The message lost all apostolic relevance to purging believers from adamic identity and sin’s fleshly power. It became reduced to a recital of “four spiritual laws.”
This reduction to a one-time encounter for unbelievers left the modern church wide open to perfecting faith by the flesh, as the Galatians did. Ever since, the church has been dedicated to perfecting, not holiness to the Lord by death to sin, but relationship to human culture—especially to American national heritage and/or to Jewish (Messianic) heritage aligned with the parliamentary state of Israel.
But now in these latest generations, even the diluted first-encounter gospel has faded from open preachment to an inherited spiritual assumption (or “salvation by osmosis”). Today, multitudes fill churches claiming to “know Jesus” who cannot provide a cogent account as to how they encountered Him through awaking to conviction of their sins and their need for repentance. They believe they know Jesus just because they frequent a place that hosts the Presence of the Lord, in effect believing that “the Presence is the power of God unto salvation.” (The same has happened to the baptism of the Holy Spirit,)
Meanwhile, as described already, actual gospel preaching in any form has been supplanted by the expositing of the latest prophetic “word” in reaction to the world’s throes, whose emphasis is to fasten us tighter to our culture, to “save” the culture, to “transform” the culture—nothing Jesus died to accomplish. Prophetic rhetoric has almost completely replaced the gospel—as the culture continues its predicted descent into final chaos and the masses find their way to hell with no message to stand in their way.
There is nothing new in what we say here. “The thing that has been is the thing that shall be.” But we write for the benefit of those confused and bewildered by the surroundings—to bring clarity to your trajectory, to assist in your staying unmoved from the true saving message committed us from the beginning. Where younger hearts in the Lord are perhaps starting to seek some answers, a teaching as this can help point the way back to the truth. It is difficult to have what now passes for church as one’s starting point in Christ for making the journey to immortality.
May the Holy Spirit use these few paragraphs to serve as a fog light to the Lord’s newest earnest seekers groping their way through the abiding stupor.
Blessings to all in the royal priesthood!
New Meadow Neck, Rhode Island
First Love Ministry
- a ministry of Anglemar Fellowship
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Page created January 7, 2021