Grace and peace to you Beloved in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. What a gift to be alive. What a gift to be alive in Christ. This is the Lord’s Day, I pray that we would be in the Spirit in it, and that we would worship God in Spirit and in truth.
Please take out your Bible and read along with me. I will read Galatians 1:6-10. Hear the very word of our holy God. Read.
Galatians 1:6. I am amazed that you are so quickly deserting Him who called you by the grace of Christ, for a different gospel; 7 which is really not another; only there are some who are disturbing you and want to distort the gospel of Christ. 8 But even if we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to what we have preached to you, he is to be accursed! 9 As we have said before, so I say again now, if any man is preaching to you a gospel contrary to what you received, he is to be accursed! 10 For am I now seeking the favor of men, or of God? Or am I striving to please men? If I were still trying to please men, I would not be a bond-servant of Christ.
Now let’s go to God in prayer and seek the Spirit’s help in our worship today. Pray.
Man is a religious creature. Even the atheist that declares he is not a religious creature, in reality he denies what he is and what he knows. The Bible says so. (Rom.1:16-32, 2:1-29) Fallen man is still a religious man, though the Fall has corrupted his mind and affections. Fallen man always believes the lie about God. They reason wrongly about religion.
Talk to a worldly wise man about religion and truth and God and Christ and Bible and heaven and hell and sin and salvation and you discover that you are talking to a spiritually blind man, deaf man, and dead man. (I Cor.17-21, 2:6-16, Rom.8:7, 2 Cor.2:14-17)
Unconverted man is dead in his sins and trespasses. (Eph.2:1-3) They are in the flesh, they sow to the flesh, they reason to the flesh. (Rom.8:5, Gal.5:16) We see this in their religious views. Look at the religion that unbelieving flesh produces. An explosion of idolatry in sight and sounds and smells. And behind it all is man trying to be God or man trying to merit his standing with his false god. (Col.2:13-23)
True religion is the opposite of this. God seeks worshipers in Spirit and in Truth. Once a man is born again, we are made new creatures in Christ. We have a new spirit. We are spiritually alive in Christ. God the Holy Spirit resides within us. (Jn.3:1-9, Eph.2:1-9, I Cor.6:19)
But beloved until we die and go to God in heaven, here on earth we still have the fallen flesh to deal with. True Believers still have the corruption of our flesh. (WCF 5.5, 6.5, 9.4, 13.2-3, 17.3) And because of this we are prone to sin. Sin in the thoughts. Sin in the affections. Sin in the will. And that brings us to the sin in the Galatian churches. (Rom.7:1-25, Jas.4:1-4, I Pt.2:11)
Today in our third sermon in the book of Galatians we are looking at the reason for the letter, and that is to correct error in the church. They have actually defected from the true gospel. This is not some sad story about some ancient church. This problem affects all of us. The devil is constantly trying to corrupt our faith in Christ alone. (I Pt.5:8)
Beloved we are in a spiritual war. (Eph.6:10-18) Let’s stand firm in Christ. Let’s be on guard against lying spirits. Let’s test everything by the word of God. (Acts 17:12, 2 Tim.3:14-17)
As we are considering error in the church let’s begin by seeing how a church is first founded. The way that a church is ‘founded’ is with the (true) gospel of Jesus Christ.
A believer in Christ comes into a place inhabited by people that heretofore are ignorant of the gospel. That means the inhabitants are sinners, they are in an estate of sin and misery, they are under the wrath of God for their sin, they are in the world, without God, and therefore without hope. (Eph.2:11-21) Strangers to God. Enemies of God. Enemies of God’s people.
But God being rich in mercy sends His ambassador to His enemies and He offers them peace. It is a full peace. A full pardon. In fact, He offers enemies and criminals the right to become His children. But they must accept peace on God’s terms. The offended King does not barter with these rebels. He states His terms, believe upon the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved. In short he brings the true Gospel. Christ Crucified. (Jn.12:10-13, Rom.8:14-16)
John 3:14. As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up; 15 so that whoever believes will in Him have eternal life. 16 “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. (Rom.10:1-17)
So a person repents of his or her sin and they believe in Christ. They are saved. Now you have a one person church. Then another person receives Christ. They are saved. Now you have the communion of the saints.
The error in Christ’s church.
Paul said, you Galatians did believe the true Gospel now you are believing a different gospel. We will look at error in general. Then we will consider gospel error.
Of course, for something to be considered wrong there has to be a standard of what is right. The standard for right and wrong in the church is the Bible (alone), which is the very word of God.
There are two kinds of errors Christians commit. There are doctrinal errors, we believe things that are not true according to the Bible. Then there are errors in practice, we do things that the Bible forbids, or we do not do things which the Bible requires.
This problem is a doctrinal problem. And a doctrinal problem that Paul says cannot go on. It must be corrected. People must stop believing wrong things about Christ. They must start believing true things about Christ.
Beloved, we live in an anti-doctrinal age in the church. Doctrine is considered a bad thing, something contrary to “living” like Christ. Our day professes that they are all concerned with good practice and not so-called dead orthodoxy. But you cannot separate the two. Practice flows from belief. We do what we believe. Doctrine is the root. Practice is the fruit. Always.
The grave error in Christ’s church.
Now there are errors that do not strike at the gospel. True Christians may believe wrong things on secondary things and still be true Christians.
And I am very thankful for this. True Christians who believe the true Gospel have different views on all manner of other things in the Bible. I am positive then that we may be wrong on a number of things but we do not know it. Yet we are still saved in Christ and loved by Christ.
But errors on the gospel strike at the very being of a Christian. If you believe a false Christ and a false gospel you cannot be saved. The sad and frightening thing is, those that believe a false Gospel are actually denying the true Christ while they take the name of Christ on their lips. More on this in a bit.
Error can take root even from good beginnings.
Who is the human agent that founded the churches in the region of Galatia? The apostle Paul, the fellow that is writing this particular letter. (Acts 16:6, Gal.1:6, 4:8-19)
This is important. If the founder of these churches were himself entangled by many errors and false doctrines and sinful practices we could say, well these poor Christians had a poor foundation. Their founding pastor was barely orthodox himself. The sheep are not to be blamed for having such a bad shepherd.
But that is not the case here Beloved. They had the apostle Paul. He spoke and wrote inspired Scripture. He was perhaps the greatest Christian that ever lived.
And for all those spiritual and religious benefits, many of them defected very quickly.
You see Beloved no Christian should boast in their minister or their association with any ministers as the basis of their standing with God. Oh, saint Peter founded our church! Really? Saint Paul founded the Galatian churches and they were tempted to become Christ denying heretics!
This is the problem with resting our salvation with our church association. Even if the founder of our church believed the biblical gospel that does not mean the people associated with him do. We should take great care lest we fall. (I Cor.10:12)
Error can take root quickly.
Paul founded these churches on his first missionary journey that occurred somewhere around AD 46-48. And he writes this letter circa AD 48-49.
Galatians 1:6. I am amazed that you are so quickly deserting Him who called you by the grace of Christ, for a different gospel;
Within one or two or three years a number of people within the Galatians churches rejected the true Gospel that they originally confessed and came to believe a different false gospel.
Sometimes errors creep into a church slowly and they work slowly and imperceptibly. Other times they come in the front door and they run through the church and change it almost over night. I will speak about why this occurs and how this occurs as we look at Paul’s correction of them.
The correction of Christ’s church.
The work of the extraordinary church officer of the apostle and the ordinary church officer of the pastor is to do two basic things.
One, to promote the truth of God’s word, both the law and the gospel. Two, to refute and correct errors concerning God’s word, by correctly using God’s word. The word of God is sufficient to instruct, to build up. And it is sufficient to correct, to tear down the false. (2 Tim.3:15-17)
Ministers are fundamentally servants of God by being servants of the word of God. So, the correction of error is not, I think or I feel. No. But rather, the word of God says thus and so. (Titus 1:7-11) To preach the word. And nothing but the word. (2 Tim.4:2-4)
Paul expresses his solidarity with these people. He expresses his service to them. He expresses his love for them. He says all of this here in verses one through five. It is inspired by God, so he is telling the truth. (Gal.1:1-5)
Galatians 1:6. I am amazed that you are so quickly deserting Him who called you by the grace of Christ, for a different gospel;
But he still corrects them. The watchman has to sound the alarm. (Ezek.33:3-9, Isa.58:1)
But I would say, he says hard things in a gentle manner. I am amazed at you. He is grieved over them. He is heartbroken for them.
He does not say, you hell deserving sinners what in the world are you doing you apostate heathen!! No. He does not speak this way. He is speaking to them as if they are true Believers that are getting tricked by a false gospel. He is not speaking to them as if they are really true Believers of this false Gospel.
However, he does apply that harder language to those teaching the false gospel. He condemns them twice with anathema. They are under the ban of God. They are under the wrath of God.
It is a truism, that we get more flies with honey. Sweetness of speech does add to our persuasiveness. (Prov.16:21)
Let’s just say, your Christian son or daughter is off at college they meet a handsome Mormon girl or boy. The Mormon invites them to their church. And they go. They are smitten with the handsome Mormon. They start to get confused and tricked by the false teaching. How would you as their father or mother speak to them? Son, daughter I love you, these things are terribly wrong, they teach a different Christ, a different gospel, please break off your friendship, please do not go back to hear their false gospel. Mildness is best. Clear. Simple. Loving. True.
You see Paul’s purpose is not to abuse these professing Christians that are led astray. He wants to restore them to the truth, to confirm them in the truth. The goal of his instruction to them is love. (I Tim.1:5)
He says they deserted the true Gospel. They are defectors. They are turn-coats. Now this is shocking. Yes. He used gentle tones. But now he uses hard words. But true words.
One man calls this the “partial apostasies of genuine Christians”. (John Brown) He means partial because he has hopes that Paul’s correction worked.
Paul says that they have defected from the true gospel to another gospel. A gospel which is no gospel.
Now he is going to address the first reason they are believing a false gospel and that is false teachers have crept into the church. Beloved false teachers are always seeking to devour the sheep. They are always in the churches. That is where they go. Wolves go where the sheep are. And they are wolves in sheep’s clothing. (Mt.7:17, Acts 20:29) They are servants of Satan but disguise themselves as ministers of righteousness. (2 Cor.11:14)
Galatians 1:7. which is really not another; only there are some who are disturbing you and want to distort the gospel of Christ.
False teachers are of two sorts. One, a teacher than knows what he teaches is wrong and he teaches it because he knows that he will be regarded by the congregation for it, usually in money or honor.
Two, a false teacher that actually thinks he teaches the truth. In this case, this person has the awful advantage of being sincere. Sincerity is not the standard. Bible truth is.
Beloved, false teachers do not announce that they are false teachers. They do not say to professing Christians, hi, I am here to teach you a false gospel. No. They do not do it like that. They hide their true intentions.
They do not believe the true gospel and so they are going to secretly introduce heresies under the guise of truth. And it will be bit by bit. Twist the scripture here. Introduce a false word there. Wait. See the response. None. Good. Wait. Now two false words. See the response. None. Good.
Or they use very artful skillful arguments. Oh, what about this. Oh, look at that Scripture, plus this Scripture. False teachers are often highly intelligent men. That is what makes them so dangerous. Their teaching seems so plausible, so right.
In this particular instance these false teachers were Judaizers. (Gal.2:3-11) Listen to what they affirmed. Jesus is the Christ. Jesus died for our sins. Jesus is the Savior. You receive Him by faith. So far so good. But now here comes the bad part…and. And you have to be circumcised. And you have to keep the law, the ceremonial law and or the moral law. (Acts 15:5) False teachers believe that salvation comes by adding Moses to Christ.
The “and” always represents the law. A false gospel of any kind seeks to mix the law of God, or the religious laws of man with the Gospel of God. (Gal.2:14) The law does not save. The law commands, do or die. The law has no mercy. Only the gospel has mercy. And the mercy is the satisfaction of the law.
False teachers mix law with the gospel. Their gospel is the law. False teachers do not know the true Gospel and false teachers do not understand the law. Listen to this quote.
Whether the Bible is Law or Gospel depends on the spiritual condition of the one hearing it. If someone is regenerate and loves God, then the whole Bible is Gospel to him. If someone is unregenerate and hates God, the whole Bible is Law to him, the whole thing condemns him. (Douglas Wilson)
Beloved. The Ten Commandments are the summary of the Moral Law for the Believer and the unbeliever alike. John 3:16 is the gospel for the Believer and the unbeliever alike. The Law is not the Gospel. And the Gospel is not the Law.
This is confusing at best. Heresy at worst. This is why one of the marks of those that teach a false gospel is they are always talking about the law of God. (I Tim.1:7) And not in a good or a right way. Not laboring to keep the law of God as a response of gratitude or love for what God has done for us in Christ. Not, love God’s law because Christ has justified you. Oh no. Law keeping is essential so that God will justify you.
Beloved, we do not deny good works. But we maintain that they are the fruits of justification or salvation. (Mt.7:15-20) But what they are teaching is that they are a partial cause of justification.
This little idea – fruits of or cause of is the difference between the Gospel of the Reformers and the Gospel of Rome. And remember there is only one true Gospel Either Rome’s gospel is correct. Or the Reformer’s is correct. One true the other false.
Earlier Paul had summarized the true gospel in 1:4, (Christ) who gave Himself for our sins. The essence of the good news is that Christ, the God-Man, dies on the Cross, taking the penalty of God due to us for our sins. Jesus atones for our sins by His blood. Jesus pays what we owe. The Sinless One is reckoned guilty. The guilty ones are reckoned innocent.
Later in the letter Paul says this,
Galatians 2:15. We are Jews by nature and not sinners from among the Gentiles;16 nevertheless knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the Law but through faith in Christ Jesus, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, so that we may be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the Law; since by the works of the Law no flesh will be justified.
Ephesians 2:3. Among them we too all formerly lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest. 4 But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, 5 even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), 6 and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, 7 so that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. 8 For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; 9 not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.
Listen to Westminster.
WSC 33 Justification is an act of God’s free grace, wherein he pardoneth all our sins,(1) and accepteth us as righteous in his sight,(2) only for the righteousness of Christ imputed to us,(3) and received by faith alone.(4) (See: WCF 16.1-7 on Good Works)
(1) Rom. 3:24,25; Rom. 4:6-8 (2) 2 Cor. 5:19,21 (3) Rom. 5:17-19 (4) Gal. 2:16; Phil. 3:9
Listen to the Heidelberg Catechism #30.
Q.30. Do such then believe in Jesus the only Savior, who seek their salvation and welfare of saints, of themselves, or anywhere else?
A. They do not; for though they boast of Him in words, yet in deeds they deny Jesus the only deliverer and Savior, for one of these things must be true, either that Jesus is not a complete Savior, or that they who by a true faith receive that Savior must find all things in Him necessary to their salvation. (I Cor.1:13, 31, Gal.5:4, Isa.9:6-7, Col.1:19-20, Col.2:20-23)
Listen to Rome (The Council of Trent, sixth session on justification, Jan. 13, 1547)
Canon 9. If anyone says that the sinner is justified by faith alone, meaning that nothing else is required to cooperate in order to obtain the grace of justification, and that it is not in any way necessary that he be prepared and disposed by the action of his own will, let him be anathema.
Canon 12. If anyone says that justifying faith is nothing else than confidence in divine mercy, which remits sins for Christ’s sake, or that it is this confidence alone that justifies us, let him be anathema.
Canon 24. If anyone says that justice received is not preserved and also not increased before God through good works, but that those works are merely fruits and signs of justification obtained, not the cause of its increase, let him be anathema.
Canon 26. If any one saith, that the just ought not, for their good works done in God, to expect and hope for an eternal recompense from God, through His mercy and the merit of Jesus Christ, if so be that they persevere to the end in well doing and in keeping the divine commandments; let him be anathema.
Beloved the true gospel is Christ merits all our salvation. The true gospel is we trust Christ for all our salvation. The false gospel is we trust partly in Christ’s doing and partly in our doing. The false Gospel says Christ begins our salvation and we complete our salvation. The true Gospel is salvation is all of grace. The false Gospel is salvation is partly of works. This is to fall from grace. (Gal.5:4)
Paul calls people that deny Christ either outright or by the implication of adding anything to Christ – enemies of the cross. (Phil.3:18-20)
Beloved again I say, if you add anything to Christ you lose Christ.
The second reason these Christians have been tricked by a false gospel is in themselves, their corruption and weaknesses. In this, we ourselves are to blame.
You see there is something in the lie that sounds right. Well this is religious. God does write about it. It looks religious. It certainly looks like it is producing holiness. So this small addition can’t really be bad, it must be good.
What makes us think this way? The simple answer is our flesh. These additions to the gospel of Christ alone appeals to our flesh. It feeds our pride in some way. Oh yes, did you happen to see the ashes on my forehead on Ash Wednesday? Oh, you think that you are justified by faith alone in Christ alone, ah but do you do all of these good works that I do.
Beloved these little additions start as one. And they start small. But as soon as you add one addition to the gospel you have destroyed the gospel. And the one never stays the one. One gospel-destroying error always breeds more. And if they go on unchecked and unrepented of, pretty soon the Christianity that this produces will look nothing like the Bible. Look at Rome.
Over time these Christ-denying Gospel-perverting teachings gain the strength of church tradition. And once that occurs. The disease is near hopeless. How men will cling to a lying gospel that will take them to hell if their father believed it or their grandfather believed it, if it is taught in their false church for hundreds of years. Surely they all could not have believed a lie. Beloved, remember the people of Noah’s day. Out of all humanity eight believed and were saved.
Oh may God pour out His Spirit upon the church to purge our pulpits of the traditions of men that deny the word of God and the Gospel of Christ. (Mk.7:10)
Paul is saying there is only one way to heaven. There are not many Savior, not many different gospels. No. One true Christ. One true message of Christ.
The true gospel is necessary to be believed to be a Christian, to be forgiven of our sins, to be reconciled to God, to spend eternity with God in heaven. To believe any gospel that differs from this one and true gospel then one is not a Christian, not forgiven of their sins, not reconciled to God, and not going to spend eternity with God in heaven.
Paul is teaching us that sound doctrine on the gospel is vitally and eternally necessary and important. Salvation depends upon it.
I will say an aside beloved, I believe much of the church no longer believes that true-truth really (really) matters. I believe large segments of the professing Christian church no longer really believe that believing the true Gospel is really necessary to be believed in order to be forgiven of sins and admitted into heaven.
As long as you say Jesus. Or say Christ. It really doesn’t matter if you believe He pays for your sins alone or that you help out a little bit.
Let me ask you beloved, would it matter if I gave you a cup of cold water but mixed in just a little bit of manure? Of course. Just a little bit of our impure works ruins Christ’s pure work. (Phil.3:1-14, Rom.11:5-6)
Christ says, it is finished. (Jn.19:30, Heb.13:8) The false gospel says it is not finished – you finish it. But we say, oh they are such nice people, oh but they really love the Lord.
Beloved let me ask you two questions. Can someone love the true Christ that does not attribute all of their salvation to Him and His merit alone? Are you not an enemy of Christ if you tell people in any way to trust in man, self, law, Mary, anything?
God says if you teach (and believe) a different gospel then “anathema”, may God curse you, the curses of God be upon you.
Galatians 1:8. But even if we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to what we have preached to you, he is to be accursed! 9 As we have said before, so I say again now, if any man is preaching to you a gospel contrary to what you received, he is to be accursed!
Notice something. This is so clear and simple that a child could understand it. No flowery language. No use of ancient Latin. No long perplexing arguments. No. Simple and straightforward. Oh, that God may send this Spirit upon His pulpit and upon all His people.
Oh, how guilty we are of making the simple complex. It comes from a fear of the simple.
Beloved, was the inspired apostle Paul wrong for saying this? Christians no longer speak this way. This is because we no longer believe this way. This is because the Bible is no longer our exclusive guide for faith and practice.
The way we speak about men that distort the gospel of Jesus Christ today is something like this, well we want to be cordial and kind and respectful. Oh learned ‘brother’ let’s have a friendly dialogue about our different ideas on the gospel and we can learn from one another.
In case you think that I am exaggerating let me give you a quote from an orthodox man debating men that hold to what is known as the Federal Vision, which is essentially the Galatian heresy that holds we are justified by believing in Christ “and’ by our faithfulness to God’s law. Remember the ‘and’ is the different gospel.
Here is the quote. It was my distinct pleasure to meet and to learn from all of these men on both sides of the controversy without exception. (The Auburn Avenue Theology – Pros and Cons, p.56)
God does not speak like this to perverters of His gospel.
Here is another quote by a good sound orthodox man writing against what is known as New Perspective on Paul. The essence of this error is always the same, justification will be faith in Jesus ‘and’ your good works.
This fellow writes, we may close with this caution with which many older Reformed writers have charged the church. All expressions of Christianity are on the path to one of two destinations, Rome or Geneva (Calvin). What NPP offers us is decidedly not “Genevan.”
He goes on to say, if we examine their arguments carefully, we see that what they are really and increasingly saying is that Luther and Calvin were mistaken, and Trent was right. (on the Gospel!!) (Guy Prentiss Waters, Justification and the NPP, pp.211-212)
He is right of course. But why will modern ministers not use God’s language against those that preach a false gospel?
The answer is simple beloved. It is the fear of man. It is a misunderstanding of what is loving and what is kind. You see the true gospel divides. The true gospel offends. But only the true Gospel saves.
V.10. May God pour out His Spirit upon us to imitate Paul. May we cease trying to please Man. May we live to please God.
Hold fast to the gospel of grace Beloved. Stay away from perverters of the true Gospel. Stay in the Bible. Stay on your knees.
- What does the Bible say about the nature of fallen man, man apart from faith in Christ? How does this affect fallen or natural man in his religious understanding and expression? (Rom.1:16-32, 2:1-29, 3:9-18, I Cor.17-21, 2:6-16, Rom.8:7, 2 Cor.2:14-17, Eph.2:1-3, Rom.8:5, Gal.5:16, Col.2:13-23)
- Do true Believers in Jesus still have the corruption of their flesh? Why? Why not? If so, how long does this corruption last? How does this corruption affect us religiously and morally? (Jn.3:1-9, Eph.2:1-9, I Cor.6:19, WCF 5.5, 6.5, 9.4, 13.2-3, 17.3, Rom.7:1-25, Jas.4:1-4, I Pt.2:11)
- How are true churches founded? Hint: how are sinners saved? Can true churches contain error and sin? Can true Christians contain error and sin? What are we taught by this? (Eph.2:11-21, Jn.3:14-16, Rev.2:1-29, Rev.3:1-22, I Pt.5:8, Eph.6:10-18, Acts 17:12, 2 Tim.3:14-17, Rom.10:1-17)
- List some doctrine we can be wrong on and still be saved. List some doctrines we cannot be wrong on and be saved? Explain why for each.
- What is the standard by which to correct religious error? What practical lessons do we learn by this? (2 Tim.3:14-17, Ps.1:1-6, Ps.119:1-7, Isa.66:5, I Thess.2:13, Jas.1:22-25, Acts 17:10-12)
- What are some of the duties of a minister? Are there any things that the minister ought not involve himself in? To whom is the minister responsible? (Titus 1:7-11, 2 Tim.4:2-4, Ezek.33:3-9, Isa.58:1, Mt.28:18-20, I Cor.1:17, 2 Tim.4:1-6, I Tim.6:1-21, Jn.21:15-17, 2 Tim.2:4, Heb.13:17, I Pt.5:1-6)
- What are some examples of saying true words of correction but in a wrong manner? What is the right manner?
- What is a false teacher? What is the primary false thing they teach that makes them a false teacher? Outwardly do they appear? Do they come from outside or inside of the church? What makes them so dangerous? What is a Judaizer? (Mt.7:17, Acts 20:28-30, 2 Cor.11:14, Gal.1:6-9, Gal.2:3-14, Acts 15:5, Dt.18:20, Ezek.13:9, Jer.14:14, Jer.23:16, Lk.6:26, Mt.24:24, 2 Tim.4:1-4, 2 Pt.3:14-18, I Jn.4:1-6, Mt.7:15-20, Titus 1:6-16, 2 Pt.2:1-22, Mt.23:1-29)
- How are sinners declared just by God? How are sinners saved? Made clean and acceptable to Holy God. (Gal.2:15-16, Eph.2:1-9, Gal.3:24-25, Rom.4:6-8, 2 Cor.5:19-21, Phil.3:1-14)
- Interact with Heidelberg Catechism #30. Q.30. Do such then believe in Jesus the only Savior, who seek their salvation and welfare of saints, of themselves, or anywhere else? A. They do not; for though they boast of Him in words, yet in deeds they deny Jesus the only deliverer and Savior, for one of these things must be true, either that Jesus is not a complete Savior, or that they who by a true faith receive that Savior must find all things in Him necessary to their salvation. (I Cor.1:13, 31, Gal.5:4, Isa.9:6-7, Col.1:19-20, Col.2:20-23)
- Critique using the Bible this statement from the Roman Catholic Council of Trent. Canon 24. If anyone says that justice received is not preserved and also not increased before God through good works, but that those works are merely fruits and signs of justification obtained, not the cause of its increase, let him be anathema.
- How does Paul refer to those that teach a false gospel? Is this right? Is this loving? Is this like Christ? Should we speak this way? Why? Why not? Who should we interact with those that teach a false gospel? (Gal.1:6-10, find more scripture to prove your answers.)