What Is “It”, What “It” Looks Like, and False Gospels
Here’s another quick but great video from the BibleProject on “gospel”.
Let’s define what I mean by “it”. “It” is the Gospel, God’s will, the Kingdom of God/Heaven, purpose, calling, Heaven and Earth, the Age to Come, the purpose of Messiah, and so on… “it” is a lot of things regarding the entirety of everything and why it exists and the good news proclaimed for it. Does that make sense? Those who have ears, let them hear. 🙂
“It” is not up for personal interpretation nor translation. “It” is more than how we choose to believe. “It” goes beyond theology and doctrine. Ultimately, brass tax, “it” is our relationship with God and how we are meant to live in response to that relationship, and also how we are supposed to co-reign with Him here on Earth. Everything else is established on this. All interpretations, translations, beliefs, theologies, and doctrines not founded upon a relationship with God through the Messiah and His True Gospel, is false.
God welcomes and actively invites us into a relationship with Him. It was the first thing He was after when He created everything, and it is still what He is after now. He. Wants. Us! This is our foundation and hope. Everything else falls into place from this perspective.
So let me expound further with a somewhat chronological list. I will try to keep it as brief, yet effective, as possible.
God creates man for relationship and the purpose of co-ruling Earth together. God gives man a command. Man disobeyed. God spared man but there were still consequences. Death/sin was born through man’s disobedience. God still wants a relationship with man and has a plan to reestablish His Kingdom on Earth. Man got pretty bad and unfortunately, God had to do something about it, but still was able to save His purpose through mankind by sparing Noah and his family. God is relentless in His attempts to reestablish what He originally wanted for man and creation in the first place, so He cuts covenants with men like Abraham, and then the people of Israel, and eventually David. God gives instructions to Israel through Moses on how to establish His way on this Earth through Torah, but man still missed it. God sees this and knows the only way to get this whole thing done is to “write His instructions (Torah) on the hearts of men” (Jeremiah 31:32, Romans 2:15). God ultimately lays down His life for the world through Messiah Yeshua. The New Covenant is cut. Mankind is redeemed. Eternal life can now once again flourish in the hearts of men and the Kingdom of God can be spread throughout the Earth spiritually. Then eventually Messiah will return back to us to establish His Kingdom physically. That’s the long-short of the big story.
Let’s focus on where we are at in this timeline, which is the Kingdom here on Earth spiritually through Messiah. What is this supposed to look like? Does it even have a “look”? Do we have a clear model within the Bible we can compare ourselves to? Yup!
It looks like-
Loving God with ALL of yourself; loving people as yourself; humility; poor in spirit; mourning; meekness; kindness; hungering and thirsting for righteousness; mercifulness; purity in heart; peacemaking; persecution for the sake of righteousness; not seeking revenge; loving and praying for your enemies; not doing anything out of selfishness or conceit but with humility considering others as more important than yourselves; selflessness; not judging falsely; not grumbling or arguing or holding grudges; giving more than receiving; serving one another; the fruits of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.
All of this and much much more like it is what the Kingdom of God looks like! This is who Kingdom people are and furthermore, this is what His will is when we pray “on Earth as it is in Heaven”!
So let’s ask ourselves some questions. Are these things prominently taught in churches these days? Are some or most or all of these attributes missing from modern teaching? Are any of the other teachings being taught in line with these attributes or are they contrary?
Jesus laid a foundation for us in Matthew chapter 5 in regards to how our attitude should be. This is the Kingdom! In fact, He proved God’s very own nature to us through this and how He expects His people and anyone else who comes to Him to also to be. Any teaching removed from this kind of attitude is dangerous and ultimately does not lead to, nor can it, produce Life. It produces death. Jesus is the root, and we abide in Him by keeping His commands. If we do not keep His commands, we do not abide and therefore can not produce fruit! John chapter 15 has details on this. The fruit we are meant to bear is the aforementioned things! Even if you do these things but your heart isn’t in them, meaning you do them but don’t actually want to do them, then you are not bearing true fruit! I can attest to this very miracle in my own life that I WANT to do these things. I WANT to put others before myself. I WANT to give more than I receive. I WANT with ALL MY HEART to be like Messiah! Am I saying it’s always easy? NOPE! Haha! But I can’t help but speak of the miracle that God Himself has worked with His own hands in my heart, nor will I be ashamed of it! I WANT TO KEEP HIS COMMANDMENTS! They are not burdensome for me, as 1 John 5:3 suggests is how it should be. Believe me when I say though, that I am still growing in all of this. As all of us should be. I have noticed that as I have been bearing this fruit, that I have been able to recognize more clearly that same fruit in other believers. But also, on the flip side, I have been able to recognize when it isn’t in some professed believers. That’s not to blame those professed believers though, because sadly there are false gospels being taught and it has led many astray.
What is a false gospel? A false gospel is anything contrary to those things mentioned in that bold paragraph. I had considered listing false gospels but I started to feel deep down it would be counterproductive. No matter what, we should always be in a position of humility in what we think we know and seek the Lord regarding them. I trust Him with my life, but I have had to learn to also trust Him with the lives of others too. He is the Great Revealer! So let me just say a few things regarding what to look for with false gospels and I will trust the Holy Spirit to do the rest.
Does it promote self? If you are listening to teachings that promote self more than promoting Jesus or others, please consider that it is false. The world is saturated with self-promotion and glorification and it has definitely seeped into the church. We are to esteem others more highly than ourselves. We are to pray for our enemies with no inkling of recompense in our hearts towards them. We are to lay our lives down for one another. Serve one another. Give as freely as we have received. Don’t miss it here! God is faithful to those who have laid down their lives for the sake of the Messiah. He will fill your heart with more love than you can handle if you do these things. I promise you.
Does it teach no persecution? Jesus made things VERY clear in this. His way is not a popular way. So if people are teaching contrary to His way, they either are just blind to His way or they might truly fear persecution. I am not talking about something like getting a middle finger from a non-believer. I am talking about being rejected by people close to you because you truly walk out your salvation in fear and trembling. You sincerely revere God and desire to walk righteously in His ways. Some people, most notably the hyper-religious folk, will despise you for it and they will persecute you because they don’t want to live like that.
Does it promote the love of money, or teach you that coveting is okay inadvertently? Sadly, there is a lot of misleading regarding money. Now, I’m just going to iterate right off the bat that I am not okay with pitting prosperity against poverty or vice versa. Ultimately, what is taught in the Word by Jesus and His disciples is to be content! Be content with what has been given to you! Want nothing more, and be thankful to God for what you have. Hebrews 13:5 states, “Keep your lifestyle free from the love of money, and be content with what you have. For God Himself has said, “I will never leave you or forsake you,” And Paul writes in Philippians 4:12-13, “I know what it is to live with humble means, and I know what it is to live in prosperity. In any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of contentment—both to be filled and to go hungry, to have abundance and to suffer need. I can do all things through Messiah who strengthens me.” I have had many times where I found myself daydreaming about winning the lottery and the things I could do with that money. But now, without hesitation, I will attest with great joy that I am free of that. Contentment is a beautiful thing. It is a gift that is worth more than all the riches of this world combined. Sidenote: Also, give out your lack or abundance! God honors your giving either way! Do not be deceived though, If you have an abundance, ask the Lord to give you the heart to give to those in need. Giving is far better than receiving!
Does it promote idolatry? Here’s the tricky one! This one goes undetected quite often. How do we tell? Please pay attention. It’s is when one part of the Word of God is emphasized and focused on and it becomes the basis by which the rest of the Word of God is judged or interpreted. This is probably the biggest cause of schisms in doctrine in my opinion. Man puts his own knowledge in front of himself as an idol and worships it and refuses correction even from God.
There are probably more indicators but I think we are getting to the point. Ultimately, again, what is false is anything contrary to His ways through Messiah. Do not be deceived. There is only One Way, One Truth, and One Life!
Have mercy and open our eyes, Lord!
If you would like to continue reading, the third blog is called Man’s Righteousness, vs God’s Righteousness. Click here.