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Bible Sword Guard Man

Guarding the Glorious Gospel of God

Guarding the Glorious Gospel of God
By Mike Gendron

The greatest attack on the Christian faith today is on the exclusivity and purity of the Gospel. That is because the exclusivity of the Gospel is a declaration that all other faiths are false. No one can come to God except through the atoning death of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ (John 14:6; Acts 4:12). No other religion offers a savior and no other religion offers salvation by God’s grace alone.

The Willful Compromise of the Gospel

Tragically, many pastors are compromising the exclusivity of the Gospel. They want to make it more inclusive in order to draw a larger following, gain more influence and be loved by more people. This man-pleasing gospel makes people comfortable in their sin but it has no power to save them because there is no call to repentance. It has gained popularity because it exalts man and his importance while diminishing God and His significance. It also overemphasizes God’s love while underemphasizing His attributes of holiness, justice and righteousness.

Why Do Christians Put Up With It?

Tragically, those who embrace this diluted gospel are woefully deceived and remain dead in their sins. Equally tragic is the willingness of born-again Christians to put up with another gospel. Paul exhorts them to repent of such apathy with a sharp rebuke: “If someone comes and proclaims another Jesus than the one we proclaimed, or if you receive a different spirit from the one you received, or if you accept a different gospel from the one you accepted, you put up with it readily enough” (2 Cor. 11:4). The only thing worse than a Christian without discernment is one who has discernment but refuses to use it to contend for the truth. Apathy has no place in a Christian’s life. The false converts who have been deceived with a compromised gospel will never know it until they are lovingly confronted with the truth.

Making Judgments Is a Christian’s Responsibility

Many Christians are unaware of their responsibility to judge and test all things. Paul commended the Bereans for rightfully judging his teaching. “They received the word with great eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily, to see whether these things were so” (Acts 17:10-11). The apostle John exhorted Christians to make judgments concerning doctrinal and spiritual issues: “Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world” (1 John 4:1). Clearly, all Christians are called to judge righteously by using the Word of God as the plumb line for discerning truth from error. And judge we must, because the Father of Lies deals in half-truths, and his fatal lies are often coated with a thin veneer of truth to deceive the unsuspecting.

When doctrinal truth is being withheld, ignored, denied, or rejected, it will produce fertile ground for deception. The only way people will know if they have true faith or a false hope is to discern the true Gospel from a false gospel. It is the responsibility of every born-again Christian to make disciples and challenge false converts to examine their faith.

Discernment is a Discipline for Disciples

Discernment is a spiritual discipline and a privilege that only born-again Christians can exercise. Paul wrote: “But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. But he who is spiritual judges all things” (1 Cor. 2:14-15). The ability to make judgments is a mark of Christian maturity. “Solid food is for the mature, who because of practice have their senses trained to discern good and evil” (Hebrews 5:14). By practicing discernment we are able to guard and protect the Gospel for the next generation.

As we practice discernment we must make sure our motives are Christ-honoring. Our objective must be to obey God’s Word for the purpose of helping, healing, correcting, warning and sharing in the spirit of love. When our motives are pure, people will be encouraged to love the truth and hate what is false (Psalm 119:104). Pure motives will result in contending for the purity of the Gospel and the sanctity of our Lord’s Church!

Guarding the Purity of the Gospel

There is no more critical issue in the Church today than guarding the purity of the Gospel. It is the rudder that must guide the Church through stormy waters that have been stirred up by every wind of doctrine (Eph. 4:14). Churches that do not provide a steady diet of God’s Word will become entertainment centers for goats instead of sanctuaries for the Shepherd’s sheep (Mat. 25:32). There is much at stake if we don’t practice discernment and contend for the faith – the glory of our Savior, the sanctity of His Church and the eternal destinies of those who are being deceived.

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