An excerpt from the last chapter of my book The Polluted Church: From Rome to Kansas City
Includes a short commentary on Roma Downey
The Everlasting Gospel
“And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people, Saying with a loud voice, ‘Fear God, and give glory to Him; for the hour of His judgment is come: and worship Him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters’'" (Revelation 14:6-7).
The book of Revelation reveals the coming “wrath of the Lamb” (Revelation 6). That means the coming wrath of Jesus Christ on wicked mankind. The Holy Spirit had David pen these words about the Son of God (Jesus) three thousand years ago,
“Serve the LORD with fear, and rejoice with trembling. Kiss the Son, lest He be angry, and ye perish from the way, when His wrath is kindled but a little. Blessed are all they that put their trust in Him” (Ps. 2:11-12).
Tragically, thirty years of the “seeker-sensitive” gospel has produced a generation that has almost no concept of God’s wrath or judgment toward sin and the wicked. Their perverted teachings on love have produced a group of people that I call “Christian hippies.” They float around on their clouds of delusion thinking, “All we need is love!” Sadly, their idea of love is based more on human emotions and feelings instead of the example of Jesus and the apostles. For many, God’s grace has been turned into a license to sin and that lie has been stretched into the false gospels of universal salvation or just outright universalism. Scriptures are taken out of context while others are ignored or completely rejected and thus, many have created a different God, a different Jesus, and different gospel than what was revealed in the Holy Bible.
A.W. Tozer described this trend sometime before he died in 1963, “We have developed in recent times a peace-loving, soft-spoken, tame and harmless brand of Christian of whom the world has no fear and for whom it has little respect. We are careful, for instance, never to speak in public against any of the false cults lest we be thought intolerant. We fear to talk against the destructive sins of modern civilization for fear someone will brand us as bigoted and narrow. Little by little we have been forced off the hard earth into a religious cloud-land where we are permitted to wing our harmless way around, like swallows at sundown, saying nothing that might stir the ire of the sons of this world. That Neo-Christianity, which seems for the time to be the most popular (and is certainly the most aggressive), is very careful not to oppose sin. It wins its crowds by amusing them and it converts by hiding from them the full implications of the Christian message.”
In his 1990 book entitled How Saved Are We?, Dr. Michael L. Brown wrote about preaching the true gospel of Jesus and said, “When we tell people that they are sinners, that there is a consequence to their actions, that one day they will be judged for their deeds, that without doubt a guilty verdict will come, people get enraged! But when all we say is “Only believe!”—no repentance, no commitment, no change of life required—why should there be any offense? How are we holding anyone accountable? How are we convicting them of their sin? We are simply not preaching the whole counsel of God. If we were (with so much media exposure), the American people would be trembling in their boots!”[i]
The Apostle Paul addressed this issue of changing the gospel in order to please men, “Grace be to you and peace from God the Father, and from our Lord Jesus Christ, Who gave Himself for our sins, that He might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father: To Whom be glory forever and ever. Amen. I marvel that ye are so soon removed from Him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed. For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men? for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ. But I certify you, brethren that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man. For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ” (Galatians 1:3-13)
These are strong words from the Apostle Paul “…but though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let that man be accursed.” The word accursed means to ban or excommunicate and curse (or speak against) greatly. I cannot stress this enough, the perverting of the gospel of Jesus Christ is a VERY serious matter. It was serious to Paul and the other apostles and it should be serious to us!
Today we have the false Roman Catholic version of the gospel that includes worship of Mary and the doctrine that sacraments are necessary for our salvation. Then, there is the Islamic gospel that denies the Deity and of Jesus Christ and His atoning death on the cross, but says that Jesus or Isa (as they call Him) will come back and tell Christians that they were wrong. There is the Emerging Church/Universalists version of the gospel that has redefined almost every aspect of what the New Testament teaches and believes that everyone will make it to heaven whether they know Jesus or not. The New Age gospel declares Jesus to be just one of many manifestations of a “Cosmic Christ” along with others like Buddha. We have the Mormon and Jehovah Witness gospels that deny the Deity of Jesus Christ and His teaching on eternal punishment in hell. They also preach a salvation that comes from good works and social action instead of being born again by faith in the cross and resurrection of the REAL Jesus Christ. Then, there is the Calvinistic version of the gospel where it is all based on their version of predestination. They believe that mankind does not have a free-will to choose God or reject Him. And finally, we have the widespread Evangelical gospel that preaches that saying a “sinner’s prayer” will guarantee a person an eternity in heaven whether they live and obey God or not. The time has come that we must get back to the true gospel of the Bible.
So how can we tell the difference between the true gospel of the Bible and a counterfeit? Over twenty years ago, I worked for a bank. Part of our training was how to spot counterfeit money. I will never forget the first thing our trainer said about this issue. She said, “The best way to spot a counterfeit bill is to be VERY familiar with the real.” She went on to tell us that because we would handle real money for hours every day; the first thing we would notice is that the paper would not “feel” the same. That is because the paper the U.S. currency is printed on is very unique. Then once we noticed the bill didn't feel the same we were told to stop and examine specific details only found on true U.S. bills.
I had to be familiar with the ink, small lines in the eyes, and look for the tiny pieces of blue and red silk that are made into the paper. Once I learned these things, I was able to recognize any bill that did not match what I knew to be real. It works the same with discerning counterfeit gospels; you will know they are counterfeit by spending time with God in prayer and learning the true gospel of Jesus Christ that is found in the Bible. With that said, let’s take a look at what the true gospel of the Bible looks like.
Some people have defined the gospel simply as “good news” and though it is good news for those who accept it, that definition is far from complete. I have often said that defining the gospel of Jesus as just “good news” is like calling a baby in the womb a blob of tissue. You see, while that may be technically correct, a baby is so much than that. It is a life that has been fearfully and wonderfully made by God. It has a very complex DNA and intricate structures that make that baby unique and special. The same can be said about the gospel of Jesus Christ.
The true gospel of Jesus Christ has certain components that cannot be left out, added to, or changed. If any part is changed, added to, or left out then it is not the gospel of Jesus Christ. Paul warned the Corinthian church and in doing so was warning us that there would be those who would preach another Jesus whom they had not preached with another spirit that they had not received a