BIBLE STUDY: THE PRESERVATION OF THE GOSPEL OF CHRIST
TEXT: Galatians 1:6-9
This passage talks about the unchangeable gospel, word, revelation and message that God has sent to man. And because God has not changed, that is why the path, revelation that came from God concerning that salvation remains unchanged. The message of Heaven, the revelation and the gospel from Heaven are above all the apostles and the angels. So if the angels, apostles, churches and denominations changed, that will not change the gospel. The apostle Paul was so sure on the veracity and unchangeableness of that gospel, that he made a curse, “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” (Galatians 1:8-9).
1. OUR CALLING INTO THE GRACE OF CHRIST Galatians 1:6
The calling that we have is by the mercy, grace, love and compassion of God. “I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel:” (Galatians 1:6).
(i) Conversion through the Grace of Christ – Romans 3:24-26; 4:16,22-25; 5:1-2; Ephesians 2:8-10.
We are converted, transformed, lives changed because grace came into our lives. “Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:” (Romans 3:24). We are justified and set freed, saved, that righteousness was imputed unto us through the Redemption that is in Christ Jesus. It is the blood of Christ that was shed as the substitute that brought that salvation unto us (Romans 3:25-26). This conversion, salvation, forgiveness is of faith, “Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all,” (Romans 4:16). The acceptance of the Lord by Abraham was imputed unto him for righteousness (Romans 4:22-25). We came in by grace, we abide and sustain by grace (Romans 5:1-2). “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:” (Ephesians 2:8). We are saved by grace, not by self-works or turning a new leaf, but we are saved only by grace.
(ii) Corruption of the Grace of Christ – Acts 15:11,24,28-29; Jude 1:4; 2 Peter 2:1-3,19; Acts 13:10-11.
There were Jewish converts that wanted to add the tradition of Judaism into the gospel. But whatever you add which is not part of the authentic gospel of Christ by the revelation of Jesus Christ and the Apostles will corrupt the gospel. When you emphasise the tradition of men above the gospel, you corrupt the gospel. “But we believe that through the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ we shall be saved, even as they” (Acts 15:11). We are saved only by the grace of Christ. Our church is becoming large in all the locations and nations, and we now have some men that crept in with the traditions and culture of men to corrupt the gospel, “For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ” (Jude 4). These are the men that said that Christ’s blood, sufferings and death are not enough for our salvation, that they now add their traditions to the gospel. This is why we need to be on our guard about everything, that we need to be aware of the fact that there were false prophets and teachers at that time, and in our days as well. And there is a consequence when people changed the gospel, “But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of” (2 Peter 2:1-2).
(iii) Confirmation of the Grace of Christ – Titus 2:11-14; Romans 5:15,17,21; 2 Corinthians 1:12; Galatians 2:20-21.
How do we confirm the grace of Christ coming from God? This grace of God comes to everyone because of the Will of the Father to save every one that believes. The grace of God brings salvation, transformation and a new life, it never comes empty-
handed, “For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; Looking for that blessed hope, and the
glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works” (Titus 2:11-14). That grace appears unto all men. The
grace of God comes into our lives and washes all the dirt and evils in our lives. It causes us to deny the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life. The grace of God comes to confirm a new life and new disposition, conservation, and language. That there is no more fleshy or careless living, but to live a sober and watchful life in this present polluted and corrupted world. Christ gave Himself for us as the Sacrificial Lamb, our Substitute to bear our shame, pains and the consequences of our sins. This is the confirmation that will be real in your life, “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me” (Galatians 2:20). I live not in the flesh, nor by human strength but by the grace of God. And the world will not conquer you, and you will live victorious in Jesus Name.
2. OUR CONSERVATION OF THE GOSPEL OF CHRIST Galatians 1:7-8
The gospel has come to us, and we are to conserve that gospel so that we can pass it to the next generation without any mutation or adulteration. God wants what is given to us, not to be thrown down, mixed with the traditions of the world, mixed with false doctrines or with all the precepts coming from the world. He wants it preserved like the Apostles did, not to mix it with any deficiencies of the human life.
i) Perseverance in the Preservation of His Gospel – Galatians 1:6-7; 1 Corinthians 15:1-4; Galatians 2:4-5; 1 Corinthians 3:10-15.
It is His Gospel so that God will approve of the gospel that you are preaching and practising as well. “Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:” (1 Corinthians 15:1-4). This was the gospel that Paul the Apostle received, and we can see the components and contents of that gospel, which is the sufferings, death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
Paul laid the foundation of the gospel in all the churches he planted, taught and edified, and in the hearts of the people that he preached to, and let no man corrupt that gospel, but let it remain the gospel (1 Corinthians 3:10- 15). Preserve the gospel, let it remain pure without any addition or subtraction, leave it as it is, practise and preach it as it is, and then you shall receive a reward. If the gospel that you preach does not bring convictions upon the sinners, that you leave them in that sinfulness and hilarious lifestyle, then you are not preaching the pure gospel.
(ii) Punishment for the Perversion of the Gospel – Galatians 1:6-9; 2 Corinthians 11:13-15; Romans 16:17-18; 2 Thessalonians 2:9-12.
The one who preaches that gospel, and that gospel is watered down, that there is no righteousness or change of life in the audience, what is the punishment for that preacher? How do you declare this gospel? Do you teach them to deny, disobey and disregard Christ and yet you promise them that they are saved? Do you believe in a lie? As a counsellor, do you counsel the people to disregard the convictions of the Spirit in their hearts to do their restitutions? If you believe the lie of that counsellor, then you are in delusion, “And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this, cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness” (2 Thessalonians 2:10-12). The counsellor and the counselee that believes a lie shall be damned.
(iii) Partakers of the Power of the Gospel – Romans 1:16-17; 15:18-19; 1 Thessalonians 1:5-10; 2 Timothy 1:8-10.
When we believe the gospel without any adulteration of men, that gospel is powerful, “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” (Romans 1:16). That power of God will work in your life when you accept this pure gospel of Christ without any corruption. That gospel comes to confirm the righteousness of God in your life (Romans 1:17). You will live a victorious life, and that sin will not dominion over you anymore in Jesus Name. As the gospel changed the lives of the Thessalonians, it change our lives even today (1 Thessalonians 1:5-10). The gospel has the power to turn everyone. Pray that such clear evidence of conversion and salvation will be visible in every one of our lives in Jesus Name.
3. OUR COMMITMENT TO THE GLORY OF CHRIST Galatians 1:9 with 2 Corinthians 8:23
We want Christ glorified, as He bore shame and death on the Cross. So we must be committed to the glory of Christ all the time. Now that we have received the gospel, we are committed to the glory of Christ. “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” (Galatians 1:9).
If you say something before according to the gospel of Christ for God’s glory, and then some people reacted negatively to that preaching, you must say it again and again. Check up in your life, are their things you said before but because of reactions and the faces of men, you cannot say those things again according to the gospel of Christ, that you are afraid of the faces of men, you are a jellyfish, no backbone. The reason why you stand on the gospel solidly is that you are not seeking your glory but only the glory of Christ (2 Corinthians 8:23).
(i) Preaching the Gospel of the Grace of God – Galatians 1:6,9; Acts 20:24-30; Ephesians 1:13; Philippians 1:27.
“But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God” (Acts 20:24). It is my course, and many things will happen in life, but as Paul the Apostle, we should be able to say that none of these things will move us. You will finish with joy. And the ministry which you have received from the Lord. Pray that this same firmness and courage that the Lord will give unto you. That once you know what God has called you to do, you will set your face like a flint in the goal you ought to reach, nothing will move you again in Jesus Name. You will stand in the power of the Lord.
(ii) Proclaiming the Goal of the Goodness of God – Romans 2:4-6; 11:22; 2 Thessalonians 1:11-12; Ephesians 5:9-11,25-27.
You hear of the goodness of God in answering prayers of the people, healing the sick. There is a goal and destination of the goodness of the Lord, and you are proclaiming that goal of the goodness of God. “Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?” (Romans 2:4). The goal of goodness is to lead you to repentance. That you will not forget that goal just because you are getting healed and receiving miracles from the Lord.
(iii) Preventing the Gainsayers for the Glory of God – Titus 1:9-11; Galatians 2:4-5; Romans 16:17-20; 2 John 1:9-11.
The gainsayers are the opposers of the truth, and they will do all things to hinder people from getting into heaven. So you will not allow the gainsayers to prevent the people under you from getting to heaven. Some people are gainsayers bold and boldfaced, that want to bring corruption into the gospel. And if you are fearful and timid, that will make the gainsayers corrupt the gospel. If those who do not have the Holy Spirit, only having the human spirit, if they are bold, then we who have the Holy Spirit should be bold and courageous to stop the gainsayers. All the gainsayers will clear out of our way, and we will preach the gospel with power and might anointing in Jesus Name. No man will be able to stand before you, the Almighty God will be with you. The gainsayers will not stop you. “And that because of false brethren unawares brought in, who came in privily to spy out our liberty which we have in Christ Jesus, that they might bring us into bondage: To whom we gave place by subjection, no, not for an hour; that the truth of the gospel might continue with you” (Galatians 2:4-5). Don’t give the gainsayers a moment, hour or time, so that the gospel will abide with you in Jesus Name. As Christ abides in you, and you are faithful to this gospel, the Lord will bring down every gainsayer against your life, ministry and purpose. Every Canaanite will clear out of the way. They will be destroyed before you in the mighty Name of Jesus.