Archive for April 2009

Justification

April 9, 2009

Of the treasure committed to Paul, the blessedness of which God would have all who sail with him enjoy while upon their voyage, no truth is of more importance to the peace of the believer than that of justification. This is pre-eminently what Paul calls, “my gospel,” and “my doctrine.” It will be observed by the thoughtful reader of the Word of God that while the question “How can man be just with God?” was twice asked in the book of Job, and to Habakkuk it was revealed that “The just shall live by his faith;” it remained for the apostle of the Gentiles to fully develop and widely proclaim the great doctrine of justification by faith. It is the cornerstone of “the mystery of the gospel.” No other apostle or apostolic writer so much as mentions it, save that Luke as the inspired historian tells us how Paul preached it. But Peter and John never get beyond forgiveness of sins – nor, in one sense, shall any of us; for our song in Heaven shall be of divine forgiveness. Still there is an aspect of forgiveness far higher than that of mere pardon, and it is of this that Paul delighted to treat.

H.A. Ironside
Sailing with Paul, Chapter 3

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Our Great Commission

April 9, 2009

Much is said of the “great commission” which our Lord gave to His apostles just before His ascension. We wonder whether our readers have ever examined the various records of this commission carefully.

This “great commission” does not say one word about “the preaching of the cross” or “the gospel of the grace of God.” The “gospel” which they were sent to preach was very evidently the same “gospel” they had been preaching – the Gospel of the Kingdom – only they could now declare, as Peter did at Pentecost, that the King had risen from the dead and would still some day occupy the throne of David.

The “great commission” demanded faith and baptism for the remission of sins (Mark 16:15-16); it included the power to heal the sick and work miracles (16:17-18), but it did not include the glad message that “Christ died for our sins” (I Corinthians 15:1-3). At Pentecost, when Peter began to carry out this commission, he rather blamed his hearers for the death of Christ; and when, convicted of their sins, they asked, “What shall we do?” he did not say, “Believe on Christ who died for your sins.” He rather commanded them to “repent and be baptized every one … for the remission of sins” (Acts 2:38).

Then after Christ and His Kingdom were again rejected, God interrupted the prophetic program and sent Paul forth to proclaim “the preaching of the cross” and “the gospel of the grace of God.” In II Corinthians 5:14-21 this apostle proclaims “the love of Christ” Who “died for all,” and instructs us as to our “great commission”:

And all things are of God, Who hath reconciled us to Himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation; to wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto Himself … and hath committed unto us the Word of reconciliation (II Corinthians 5:18-19).

Cornelius R. Stam (1909-2003)
Two Minutes with the Bible

Paul’s Gospel

April 9, 2009

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Paul speaks of “my” gospel, and hints that he was given unique revelations (see Romans 2:16; 16;25; Galatians 1:11-12; 2:2; Ephesians 3:3ff; II Timothy 2:8). Why would he refer to the gospel as “my gospel” if it was a carbon copy of what the apostles preached in the early days? Why not call it the gospel? …

… God gave Paul a greater understanding of God’s truth than He originally gave to the 11. As evidence of this, note the volume of New Testament Scripture that he either dictated or penned –13 of the 23 post-cross books, not to mention that three-fifths of the Book of Acts deals with his ministry as penned by Luke. The other New Testament penmen don’t dedicate the amount of space in their writings to proclaim our identity in Christ that Paul does. Ephesians 1:3 through 2:10 alone (A.D. 60-62) contains 40 verses proclaiming our true identity! But the 3000 people who came to Christ at Pentecost were not taught this truth in Peter’s sermon.

Bill Gillham
What God Wishes Christians Knew About Christianity (1998)
Daily Email Goodies

The New Birth

April 9, 2009

The Bible says “ye must be born again” (John 3:7). I believe that those to whom our Lord spoke must be begotten anew. What right have I or anyone else to say that all must be born again? John was a minister of the Circumcision. He was never sent to the Uncircumcision. If I were asked to name the principal causes of incorrect doctrine in Fundamentalists’ creeds I should surely include their almost complete apostasy from Paul, to whom alone the present secret administration was entrusted (Ephesians 3:8-9). They, like “all they which are in Asia,” have turned away from him (II Timothy 1:15). They do not believe that Paul was entrusted with the gospel of the Uncircumcision, as Peter and John of the Circumcision (Galatians 2:9).

The “new birth” is displaced by a deeper truth in Paul’s epistles. He introduces a new creature (II Corinthians 5:17) …

A.E. Knoch (1877-1965)
The Words of Man’s Wisdom

Paul’s Epistles

April 9, 2009

For years I have been reading and studying the Apostle Paul and his Church Epistles. They are completely adequate for the life and labors of every member of the Body of Christ.

Lehman Strauss (1911-1997)
Cited by Miles J. Stanford in Pauline Dispensationalism

More Interest in Antichrist than Christ

April 9, 2009

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When I first came to California, the late Dr. Arno C. Gaebelein, … wintered out here in Pasadena, and I went to visit him. He asked me how I liked California, and I replied, “I love it here, but it’s very interesting that if I teach the Book of Revelation, I can fill the church (even during midweek service), but if I begin teaching the Epistle to the Romans, I can practically empty the church. I find there are people who will run all the way across this area to find out from a speaker just how many hairs are in the horse’s tail in Revelation.” He then made a statement to me that I shall never forget, “Dr. McGee, you’re going to find out in your ministry that there are a great many people more interested in Antichrist than they are in Christ.”

J. Vernon McGee (1904-1988)
Thru the Bible with J. Vernon McGee. Vol. V, p. 476
Daily Email Goodies

Sad Confusion

April 9, 2009

Utter confusion reigns among evangelicals because of the failure to rightly divide the Word, especially the clear distinction between Israel and the Church … More and more I am distressed with the teaching which confuses Israel and the Church, Law and Grace, Salvation and Discipleship.

Sad, sad that many of God’s dear children seem to know nothing more than Jesus of Nazareth in His humiliation – while the risen, ascended, glorified Man is ignored, or unknown.

Paul R. Van Gorder
Cited by Miles J. Stanford in Pauline Dispensationalism


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