I get what the whole positive thinking message is trying to do. Do better –Try harder – Be positive. I spent much of my life pushing that theme. I have come to realize that trying to spiritually exercise my way to salvation will leave me feeling beat up, frustrated and depressed, because no matter how hard I try I don’t measure up.
There seems to be a popular theme in much of the modern-day church – a get better, self-improvement message replacing the gospel. Ministers pontificate from their crystal soap boxes with a positive self-help theme that has nothing to do with the message of the gospel. They preach; “You can do it” – Grace says, “I did it for you”.
The message of the gospel is that of God’s goodness and mercy embodied in grace. Jesus in His mercy died on a cross that we might receive salvation. All the self-help in the world cannot earn even one ounce of grace. Concretized in the foundation of grace is a message that not only improves our daily life but leads the lost to forgiveness of their sins by the blood of Jesus Christ. All the help we need is found at the foot of the cross. Any advice on how to make your life spiritually better that is not channeled by the message of grace affronts the gospel and insults the life laid by Christ on Calvary.
The message of gospel speaks to our heart’s deepest needs filling us with God’s purpose and desire. Many times as believers we think we need to grow deeper into God while thinking that the gospel is only for the unsaved. Sometimes we see the gospel as not feeding us with “solid food,” but only with “milk,” thinking that we need to move on fuller maturity of knowledge. In truth, there is more than enough meat found in the message of grace that keeps us grounded in our infancy and in our maturity as Christians. Grace reminds us that everything we need for our past, present and future is found in the gospel.
I have come to realize and understand that I must remind myself every day of the work of grace in my life, less I become insensitive to the message of the gospel that decrees the mercy of God. It is when I forget the message of grace incarnate in the gospel that I find myself in trouble in life.
We cannot be fickle as followers of Christ allowing our ears to be turned away from the message of the gospel by a feel good, “I can do it” message outside of grace. A Christ-less gospel is not the gospel – Jesus Christ is the gospel. Any variation of the Truth of Grace, is a lie about God. Those who are proclaiming the positive feel good message as the gospel are unfaithful to the message of the Grace of Christ. Paul tells us in Galatians – If one of us—even if an angel from heaven were to preach something other than what we preached originally, let him be cursed. I said it once; I’ll say it again: If anyone, regardless of reputation or credentials, preaches something other than what you received originally, let him be cursed.
Embrace the message of grace given to us by our Lord. The power of grace is not mere human optimism, or a feel-good, do better message. The message of the gospel is grace, and it comes straight from God by the blood of Jesus Christ.
- The Offense of the Cross – A Rebuke to the Modern Gospel of Watered Down Half Truths (thewordonthewordoffaithinfoblog.com)
- Basis Christian Beliefs (stromquistm.wordpress.com)
Categories: Bible, Bible Verses and Scriptures, Christ, Christianity, Cross, Forgiveness, God, Grace, Jesus, Ministry, Repentance, Restoration, Salvation
Excellent post, Darrell. Thank you!
Thank you Lyn – Blessings in Christ -Darrell
Amen, brother! We can do all things through CHRIST who strengthens us..on our own we can do nothing.
My favorite line of your post was, “Grace reminds us that everything we need for our past, present and future is found in the gospel.”
Thanks for stopping by and sharing Sarah – May God’s grace surround all you do – In Christ Darrell
Same to you. :0)
Well I am posting on an old article again because I am confused, what is the difference in We can do all things through Christ who strengthens me, then what I hear in what you may be talking about when you say feel good sermons because I know the one that is credited as the feel good preacher. Anyway, when I listen to him, not often but really on purpose because he is talked about so much, I hear the principle’s of God being taught, and if those principles are followed grace will meet you. I don’t really consider that self help. I am not trying to be difficult but I am really confused. Just know that it has taken most of my life to come out of religion I grew up in. God has worked in me a lot in the last couple of years in that respect, so I really am trying to grasp this. I know Jesus is the answer, and he works in me in different ways at different times, but there are biblical principles too. I just wish I could understand and apparently I am not. God Bless
Wow…great message in your article and graphic!! Bless you!!!
Thanks 🙂 Blessings to you in Christ – Thanks for stopping by – In Christ Darrell
Thanks 🙂 Love your page at http://papergiftsforestefany.wordpress.com/ – Blessings Darrell
I’ve nominated you for the Super Sweet Blogger Award . Check out the simple rules later today on my website, http://shareaverse.wordpress.com/2013/08/25/super-sweet-blog-award/
Blessings my sweet friend!
Thank you – Humbled and honored – Blessings Darrell
Reblogged this on and commented:
Amen Darrell! Telling it like it is – Christianity is about God’s grace personified through Christ.
Thanks Stephen – Thanks for stopping by and commenting – I stopped by your page at http://lastingvictory.com/ and read What do you do if you can’t hear God? I thoroughly enjoyed it – Blessings Darrell
Praise God for his mysterious ways. Truly he makes all things happen for a reason. The link you posted does not lead to my article 🙂 but I followed it out of curiosity and read a post that speaks to my heart. God knows I needed that.
🙂 God is good
Yes He is Indeed 🙂
When I click on your name it takes me to http://10seventeen.wordpress.com/ – Is that not your site? – Darrell
Yup that’s the one..the one in your comments brings me to another site….or is it just me clicking on the wrong place .
Hooray! Darrell–it’s about time I started hearing someone say what you did in your article! That’s right–the only self-help any of us need is to pick up the Bible–God takes it from there!!! Bill Byrnes– thebiblealiveandkickin.com
Amen – I visited your page again today and my wife Grace still loves those boots 🙂 http://thebiblealiveandkickin.com/ Blessings Darrell
I agree that we have to consider grace first. My job is to support people to use self help materials to help them feel better. The self help materials are great – they can really turn people’s lives around. But for many people their problem is that they don’t feel worth anything. They don’t do stuff to help themselves because they don’t think they’re worth it. The definition of ‘worth’ is a matter of belief. Jesus death shows us that we are worth something. This feeling of worth then free’s us to do amazing things. The self help booklets I use give more detailed self help advice than that preached in the gospel and I believe god has used them to help me and many other Christians and non-Christians, but without the gospel there isn’t a reason to use them. It’s god that makes us realise we are worth helping.
Grace always comes first, and last – Grace is our everything – Thanks for stopping in and sharing – In Christ Darrell
Thank you for posting this article concerning the true Gospel of God’s Grace. I’ve been spiritually discerning that Jesus is being left out of a lot of modern professions of faith in Christ, but couldn’t quite put my finger on what the issue is. When I read your articles, everything in me just said: “Yes!” that’s it!!! It is comforting to know that I’m not the only ‘weirdo’ out here that still believes in the message of the cross!
Thank you Patricia – The message of the cross is all there is to believe 🙂 Blessings Darrell
“In truth, there is more than enough meat found in the message of grace that keeps us grounded in our infancy and in our maturity as Christians. Grace reminds us that everything we need for our past, present and future is found in the gospel.”
I love this–such a truth that we so easily overlook. Well said!
Thank you Rebeca, I enjoyed your musings at http://rebecajones.wordpress.com/ Your blog is a blessing. Thanks for stopping by and sharing. In Christ, Darrell
Well said, Darrell! I saved this message so I could read – and not just skim – it. I’m so glad I did. This is an important message for all of us who blog. Lord help us refrain from presenting the gospel as anything other than grace…to leave our readers burdened with a “to-do” list for their salvation. Jesus said, “It is finished”…and that’s exactly what He meant.
Thanks for the encouragement to keep it all about the finished work of Jesus.
It indeed is finished, blessed be His name. Thanks so much for sharing. In Christ, Darrell
Thank you for another uplifting message Darrell. Blessings to you and Gracie!
Thank you Belinda, Gracie sends her love 🙂 Darrell
Reblogged this on Lessons by Heart and commented:
It’s all about Jesus, and it is completely about grace. Darrell writes inspirational pieces that will encourage you today. Don’t stop with this one article! \o/
Thanks for the repost – humbly appreciated- Darrell
Thanks for the post – your message is desperately needed. 🙂
so appropriate.. my husband was told the EXACT same words yesterday..we know this, have lived it and then God reveals a deeper level of arrogant independance
Thanks for stopping by to share Melanie – I stopped by your site at http://themotherofnine9.wordpress.com/ and read about how you decide to share, you just write. I definitely look forward to reading more – Blessings to a mother of nine (amazing) 🙂 in Christ- Darrell
thank-you..more Christian site ishttp://melaniejeanjuneau.wordpress.com/
A feel good gospel always leaves me asking “Is there more to this than that?” But the TRUE gospel always leaves me saying “THIS is the True character of Christ: the Savior who bore a not-too-good-feeling-heavy cross.” Nice post Darrell!
Thank you Ed, I loved the pictures and messages of your page at http://inpulsearts.com/Word/. Thanks for the comment, In Christ, Darrell
Loved this post! I am so glad Tami reblogged it so that I can now follow. Blessings to you dear brother in Christ. 🙂
I enjoyed reading Love Is at your page http://thinkinaboutjesus.wordpress.com/ I appreciate you taking the time to stop and share, Blessings to you in Christ. Darrell
Excellent message and the photo is breathtaking – God’s grace is surrounding me!
Thanks for the kind words. I also enjoyed your page at http://findingmyinnercourage.wordpress.com/. I enjoyed reading about grandpa Shields. May you continue to be surrounded by grace, In Christ, Darrell
Great Message!! It’s needs to be said, and you have, in a brilliant way. May the Lord keep and bless you!
Thanks, I enjoyed reading your piece Truth on Prayer at http://shadeakinbiyi.wordpress.com/. May the Lord richly bless your efforts as you spread the message of His grace, In Christ Darrell
It’s very kind of you, to God be the glory. Thank you. Blessings to you!
Amen! Thank you for this important message. May the truth here take wing!
Thanks, 🙂 I stopped by your page at http://alighttomyway.wordpress.com/ and was thoroughly blessed by the truth you share. I apprecite greatly you taking the time to stop and share, In Christ Darrell
This was so good for me today! Remembering God’s control and authority in my life – sweet, precious mercy and grace.
Thanks so much for stopping by and shine. I enjoyed reading for the Laborers of the Land on your page at http://crustybreadblog.com/. Every article I read was full of hope and promise. May the Lord bless your efforts to spread His grace and mercy to those in need . In the name of Christ our Lord Darrell
Hermeneutics is the science of interpretation of the Scriptures. What are the causes of faulty hermeneutics? Things that contribute to faulty hermeneutics are proof-texting, lack of prayerful study, pride, exalting men as infallible teachers, man made tradition doctrinal influences, self-imposed ignorance and dishonesty.
FAULTY HERMENEUTICS dictates that Jesus was a sinner!
Romans 3:23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
Does this prove that Jesus was a sinner? Absolutely not.
Hebrews 4:14-15 Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. 15 For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weakness, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet is without sin.
Jesus was not guilty of sin.—-PROPER HERMENEUTICS IS THE ANSWER.
FAULTY HERMENEUTICS dictates that John the Baptist was the reincarnation of Elijah.
Matthew 11:14 And if you are willing to except it, John himself is Elijah who was to come.
Does that Scripture prove that John the Baptist was Elijah reincarnated? No, it does not.
John 1:19-23 This is the testimony of John….21 They asked him, “What then? Are you Elijah?” And he said, “I am not.”…
Luke 1:5-17…It is he who will go as a forerunner before Him in the spirit and power of Elijah….
John the Baptist was not the reincarnation of Elijah.—–PROPER HERMENEUTICS IS THE ANSWER.
FAULTY HERMENEUTICS dictates that Jesus was God the Father.
Isaiah 9:6 For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; And the government will rest on His shoulders; And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.
Would this Scripture prove that Jesus is God the Father? No, it would not.
Mark 13:31-32 Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away. 32 But of that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father alone.
Jesus will not know the end of time until God the Father tells Him. Jesus is not God the Father.
1 Corinthians 15:20-28….23 who are Christ’s at His coming, 24 then comes the end, when He hands over the kingdom to God the Father…..28 When all things are subjected to Him, then the Son Himself also will be subjected to the One who subjected all things to Him, so that God may be all in all.
Is Jesus God? Yes, Jesus is God, but Jesus is not God the Father.—–PROPER HERMENEUTICS IS THE ANSWER.
FAULTY HERMENEUTICS dictates that men can be saved without being baptized because the thief on the cross was saved without being immersed in water. Can men today be saved without baptism. No, they cannot.
Luke 23:39-43 ….42 And he was saying, “Jesus, remember me when You come into your kingdom!” 43 And He said to him, “Truly I say to you, today you shall be with Me in Paradise.”
Was the thief saved? Yes, the thief was saved, however, the thief was saved before the New Covenant was in force. Under the New Covenant men have to be baptized in water in order to have their sins forgiven.
Hebrews 9:16-17 For where a covenant is, there must of necessity be a death of the one who made it. 17 For a covenant is valid only when men are dead, for it is never in force while the one who made it lives.
The New Covenant, the New Testament, the New Agreement was only in effect after the death of Jesus. When Jesus was alive He forgave men of their sins for various and sundry reasons; the thief was one of those He forgave.
The terms of pardon under the New Covenant are :
FAITH (John 3:16)
REPENTANCE (Acts 2:38)
CONFESSION (Romans 10:9-10)
BAPTISM (Acts 2:38, Mark 16:16)
Can men today be saved like the thief on the cross? No.—PROPER HERMENEUTICS IS THE ANSWER.
FAULTY HERMENEUTICS=30,000 different denominations and religious groups all claiming the absolute truth? PROPER HERMENEUTICS IS THE ANSWER!
(All Scripture quotes from: NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE)
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So very True Darrell, when we believe that we can measure up in the flesh we are indeed like Paul when He said in Romans 7 that he was a wretchard man but thankfully added that Jesus would rescue him and then shows us how in Romans 8 and many other Scriptures.
Romans 8 :12-15 Therefore, brothers, we have an obligation—but it is not to the sinful nature, to live according to it. or if you live according to the sinful nature, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live, because those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God.
We give thanks that Jesus has set us free from the bondage of sin.
John 8:34-36 Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave to sin. Now a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.
1 John 4:17-19 Herein is our Love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as He is, so are we in this world. There is no fear in Love; but perfect Love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in Love. We Love Him, because He first Loved us.
Christian Love from both of us – Anne.
Amen Anne, Thank God we are measured by Grace 🙂 In Christ Darrell
Reblogged this on Defy The Narrative.
Reblogged this on Shards Of DuBois and commented:
Brilliant post.Yes l believe man is unable to save himself ,Christ paid the price on the cross.Jalal
Yes He did Jalal, Thanks so much for taking the time to stop and share – Blessings Darrell
Ha! The best part is that about realizing that our growth and maturity depends on how much we realize what HAS BEEN DONE for us and letting go in total trust.
I hope we never forget this because as we grow more and experience the beauty and strength in God, we almost begin to feel like superhumans and forget more about grace.
Thank you 🙂 I visited your page at http://realityenchanted.com/ and found it interesting. I can tell you put a lot of work and effort to your site. thanks for stopping by and taking the time to share and comment. Blessings to you in Christ Darrell
Thanks very much, D.
Appreciate the visit too.
Thanks. Blessings to you too. *smiles*
you too 🙂