not that there is another one, but there are some who trouble you and want to distort the gospel of Christ. [galatians 1:7]
the word distort is so sneaky. the idea that something can resemble the original, but be so different that if you are familiar with the original, the image looks wrong, uncomfortable, even sometimes grotesque.
how often do we hear ideologies of a grotesque gospel?
to say “you do you” is kind and affirming
to say “believe in yourself” is reassuring and confidence building
to say “everyone struggles with that” is comforting and gentle
to say “that was cultural and is outdated” is forward thinking and progressive
this list could go on and on for pages. things we hear in the world and often times even in the church, and because words like kind and gentle are attached to them, we have difficulty refuting them. if we disagree, we are considered unkind, harsh, judgemental. so what do we do?
we must know the true gospel. we must be able to speak it clearly in a way that makes much of Jesus Christ and that makes nothing of human self righteousness. we must be in the word constantly, drinking in the truths of God, so that they are screaming in our heads the moment we hear anything contrary. and then, in love, we must speak the truth. and what does God’s truth say?
instead of “you do you”, it says, “nothing satisfies but Christ alone.” [john 6:68-69]
instead of “believe in yourself,” it says, “believe on the Lord Jesus Christ!” [acts 16:31]
instead of “everyone struggles with that,” it says, “fight the good fight of the faith!” [1 tim 6:12]
instead of “cultural and outdated,” it says, “God’s Word will never pass away.” [matt 24:35]
as a church, the body of Christ, we are entrusted with such a precious gift, and are called to guard it well. and so we have to know the truth. we have to know the true gospel. God is working, reconciling a people to himself, and soon will reconcile all things!
Father, open our eyes to your truth. give us hearts to drink it in, to love it, to cling to it with our lives, and to pour it out to others. give us wisdom to discern, and give us boldness to guard your precious gospel. amen.
~ arwen eastman