The purpose of this blog is to challenge Christians to rethink their understanding of the gospel. It is my conviction that the gospel we have received from the pulpit and put our hope in is not a pure and true reflection of what we have taught to us in the scriptures.
Over and over again Paul defends his gospel based on two sources. They are the Law of Moses and the Prophets. He never once makes any reference to any rough draft of a New Testament in his writings. More importantly, he never ever makes mention of any special revelation that he supposedly received at Mt. Sinai. Even in the last chapter of the book of Acts Paul’s gospel is still exclusively preached from the Law of Moses and the Prophets.
Christianity has a tendency to justify its doctrine based upon the theologians, thinking they are understanding Paul’s revelation from Mt. Sinai. The fruit of this creates such huge divisions as Armenian thought verses Calvinism or Reform Theology, which boils down to such issues of once saved always saved, or did Jesus die for everyone, or does man have free will.
The Gospel According to the Gospel comes from the perspective that the revelation that Paul received was not as some envision it. Paul did not set at Jesus’ feet in Arabia and get a whole new gospel. What Paul got was a new look at the same old “boring” text of the Law of Moses and the Prophets.
There is a huge difference between the frame work of these two understandings. One leads to look for so called “new and original” thoughts never expressed before in scripture through the writings of the New Testament. Secondly, it tends to consider obsolete existing ideas found in the Law of Moses and the Prophets which was the only text of Paul’s gospel.
The Gospel According to the Gospel looks to find the testimony of Paul matching what was written in the boring text of the Law of Moses and the Prophets. Which is exactly what we see Paul preaching from in the last part of the last chapter of Acts.
Act 28:23-24 KJV And when they had appointed him a day, there came many to him into his lodging; to whom he expounded and testified the kingdom of God, persuading them concerning Jesus, both out of the law of Moses, and out of the prophets, from morning till evening. (24) And some believed the things which were spoken, and some believed not.
Many believers assume that when Paul mentions that he is not ashamed of the gospel…
Rom 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.
…they assume he is speaking about this new gospel completely apart from the Old Testament. We assume the Old Testament is now regulated to history, prophecy and the wrath of God until grace should come in Christ. This couldn’t be further from the truth.
Paul wrote the book of Romans long before he eventually made it there in chains. The gospel he was not ashamed of was not any new revelation or teaching apart from what he had as Saul of Tarsus. He was not ashamed of the gospel of the Law of Moses and the Prophets. This is how he can say a righteousness from God apart from the Law has been revealed.
Now some of you may think that I just contradicted myself. I have been saying that Paul’s gospel was not a new revelation but a clearer understanding of what was written in the Law of Moses and the Prophets. But I just quoted Paul who testifies that a righteousness apart from the Law has been revealed.
This is exactly the place where Christianity starts to go down the wrong road. They hear Paul but they do not listen to Paul. Here is what Paul says.
Rom 3:20-22 KJV Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin. (21) But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; (22) Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:
It is not as the theologians assume. Just because no flesh will be justified through the Law doesn’t mean that we are to draw out of the New Testament some before unknown doctrine that is not witness to by the Law of Moses and the Prophets. Instead when we read the New Testament we are to look for the witness that Paul would have written down that matches what he states. That is, we have this new and better hope through Christ that we are saved apart from obeying the Law and the witness to this new hope is the gospel preached in the Law of Moses and the Prophets.
The New Testament is the testimony of the gospel found in the Law of Moses and the Prophets. It is not some new doctrine witnessed to by this supposed special revelation that we think we get to extract through textual criticism and study of the Greek. It is as simple as the mystery in the Law of Moses and the Prophets not revealed before , but now is revealed in the teachings of the Apostles. The New Testament is the mystery of this gospel found in the Law of Moses and the Prophets spelled out for us.
Rom 16:25-26 KJV Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began, (26) But now is made manifest, and by the scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, made known to all nations for the obedience of faith:
This is why it is worth your time to study the gospel that has been presented here on this blog. If you do, you will discover many difficult passages make complete sense now. As you learn the New Testament from the perspective it was written and reject what the church has done to it, the gospel will open up to you in ways you could never imagine. You will then be able to make better sense of the Christian life.