What the Gospel Is And Is Not
What the Gospel Is And Is Not
Just what is the Gospel of Jesus Christ?
That is the most important of all questions because upon it hinges the eternal destiny of our souls. If we do not OBEY that Gospel, we are damned for all eternity:
“… the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power” [2Thess 1:7-9]
Even if we know what the Gospel is, we cannot obey the Gospel perfectly in and of ourselves and so we cannot save ourselves or even contribute to or participate in our salvation. Wonderfully, Jesus Christ paid the entire sin debt owned by His people so they (the people God saves) no longer need to fear the eternal wrath of God. Those whom Christ saves, are then supposed go out into all the world (and they will want to go) and preach the Gospel to every creature – to those whom God puts in their path as they journey through life. Therefore believers in Christ need to know what this Gospel is so that they can present it to others, as clearly and accurately as possible.
Many people, who may be genuine Christians, often do not have a proper understanding of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. They do not fully understand what it is that saves a soul or how it is that God performs His work of salvation in a person. Just like Apollos, they need to be instructed in the way of God more perfectly:
“And a certain Jew named Apollos, born at Alexandria, an eloquent man, and mighty in the scriptures, came to Ephesus. This man was instructed in the way of the Lord; and being fervent in the spirit, he spake and taught diligently the things of the Lord, knowing only the baptism of John. And he began to speak boldly in the synagogue: whom when Aquila and Priscilla had heard, they took him unto them, and expounded unto him the way of God more perfectly.” [Acts 18:24-26]
|“Brethren, there is nothing in the gospel, apart from the Spirit of God, which can save a man, for man hates the gospel with all his heart! Though the reasonableness of the gospel of Jesus ought to make the belief of it universal, yet its plain dealing with human sin excites deadly antagonism. Therefore, the gospel itself would make no progress were it not for the divine power. There is an invisible arm which pushes forward the conquests of the truth. There is a fire unfed with human fuel, which burns a way for the truth of Jesus Christ into the hearts of men.” – C.H. Spurgeon|
WHAT THE GOSPEL IS NOT
A helpful way of understanding what the Gospel is, is to point out some common misconceptions about salvation. The true Gospel of Jesus Christ is NONE of the following, no matter how many people may be saying these things:
|This is NOT the Gospel:||1. God has a wonderful plan for your life.|
|This is NOT the Gospel:||2. God loves the sinner but hates the sin.|
|This is NOT the Gospel:||3. You can be saved anytime you want just by accepting Christ.|
|This is NOT the Gospel:||4. Say some “sinner’s prayer” and if you really mean it, you are saved.|
|This is NOT the Gospel:||5. Anyone who believes in God (according to just about any religion) will get to heaven.|
|This is NOT the Gospel:||6. Anyone who is a “good” person will get to heaven.|
|This is NOT the Gospel:||7. Anyone who believes in Jesus and calls Jesus “Lord” is a Christian.|
|This is NOT the Gospel:||8. All it takes to become saved is to exercise saving faith in Christ.|
NONE OF THE ABOVE are “the Gospel” or even a part of it, no matter how many churches, pastors, evangelists, preachers, or teachers say they ARE the Gospel.
Let us look in more detail at these things that the Gospel is NOT:
Misconception #1: God has a wonderful plan for your life.
In truth, God might a plan for your life that you may not like in the least – if you are not among the “elect”, those whom Christ came to save. Even true believers are told throughout the Bible that all who live godly lives in Christ can expect to be persecuted, while the unsaved may live lives full of material blessings and other blessings. Ultimately, those who die lost can expect their lives in eternity to be most miserable…
Romans 9:22 – “What if God, willing to shew his wrath, and to make his power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath fitted to destruction:”
Romans 2:5-6 – “But after thy hardness and impenitent heart treasurest up unto thyself wrath against the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God; 6 Who will render to every man according to his deeds:”
Prov 29:1 – “He, that being often reproved hardeneth his neck, shall suddenly be destroyed, and that without remedy.”
What is God’s plan for your life? Do you know? Are you seeking the Lord while He may be found?
Misconception #2: God loves the sinner but hates the sin.
In truth, God hates the workers of iniquity AND their wicked works…
Psalm 5:5 – “The foolish shall not stand in thy sight: thou hatest all workers of iniquity.”
Psalm 11:5 – “The LORD trieth the righteous: but the wicked and him that loveth violence his soul hateth.”
Prov 15:9 – “The way of the wicked is an abomination unto the LORD: but he loveth him that followeth after righteousness.”
Does God love you or are you still spiritually lost and living according to your own standards or your church’s standards instead of according to the Bible?
Misconception #3: You can be saved anytime you want just by accepting Christ.
In truth, salvation is of the Lord (Jonah 2:9), not of man. God alone determines who He will save and when He will save them. God is the giver of all life, both physical life and spiritual life. No One is born into His kingdom unless He orchestrates everything necessary for that birth to occur…
1Cor 15:8 – “And last of all he was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time.”
John 1:13 – “Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.”
Eph 1:4-5 – “According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: 5 Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,”
We don’t accept Christ and His rule in our lives until He first accepts us and converts our rebellious hearts:
Ephesians 1:5 – “Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, 6 To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.”
Has Christ accepted you yet? How do you know?
Misconception #4: Say some “sinner’s prayer” and if you really mean it, you are saved.
In truth, God will have mercy on whom He will have mercy. God doe not owe anyone salvation. Nor does a person’s prayer cause God to do something, otherwise that person would be more sovereign than God…
Romans 9:15,18 – “For he saith to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion. 18 Therefore hath he mercy on whom he will have mercy, and whom he will he hardeneth.”
Daniel 4:35 – “And all the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing: and he doeth according to his will in the army of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth: and none can stay his hand, or say unto him, What doest thou?”
Your motives for saying some prayer may be entirely selfish. You may have no desire whatsoever to repent and come under the Lordship of Christ – you may only be trying to avoid judgment without having to turn from your sins. In fact, since the human heart is so corrupt and so easily deceived, you may not even know what you are really saying or doing, for as the Bible says:
Jeremiah 17:9 – “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?”
Proverbs 28:9 – “He that turneth away his ear from hearing the law, even his prayer shall be abomination.”
When you pray, do you know if God hears you? Your prayers are an abomination to God if you are still living in rebellion to Him.
Misconception #5: Anyone who believes in God (according to just about any religion) will get to heaven.
In truth, you must believe in Jesus, the Jesus of the Bible, and Him alone. Believing in a man made Jesus such as the Jesus of Catholicism, Mormonism, or Jehovah’s Witnesses will save no one…
Acts 4:12 – “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.”
John 14:6 – “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”
John 14:9 – “Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Shew us the Father?”
Acts 17:2-3 – “And Paul, as his manner was, went in unto them, and three sabbath days reasoned with them out of the scriptures, 3 Opening and alleging, that Christ must needs have suffered, and risen again from the dead; and that this Jesus, whom I preach unto you, is Christ.”
Acts 2:36 – “Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ.”
Col 1:13 – “Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son: 14 In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins: 15 Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature: 16 For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: 17 And he is before all things, and by him all things consist. 18 And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence. 19 For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell;”
Gal 1:8 – “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.”
John 4:24 – “God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.”
When, and only when God converts a sinner, do they have a proper relationship to God and do they accurately understand who Christ is, especially as their Lord, as eternal God, who became their sin-bearer, their substitute and all-sufficient Saviour from the eternal wrath of an infinitely holy God. So, only a converted sinner whom God has put His Spirit in, is capable of believing in God properly – in spirit and in truth.
Which God do you believe in? The God of the Bible or a god invented by you or your church.
Misconception #6: Anyone who is a “good” person will get to heaven.
In truth, no one is good in God’s eyes…
Romans 3:10&23 – “As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: … 23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;”
Isaiah 64:6 – “But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.”
Isaiah 59:1-2 – Behold, the LORD’S hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear: 2 But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.”
God’s standards of righteousness and holiness are far higher than man’s standards. According to God’s standard, committing just ONE sin qualifies a person for hell for all eternity:
James 2:10 – “For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all.”
God expects perfection, something we are all incapable of:
Matt 5:48 – “Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.”
This puts us in a hopeless situation, unless Christ grants us a complete pardon for all our sins but that pardon cannot be granted without someone paying for our sins. That someone is Christ who paid the complete penalty for all the sins of all of His people:
Matt 1:21 – “And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.”
Are you one of His people? How do you know?
Misconception #7: Anyone who believes in Jesus and calls Jesus “Lord” is a Christian.
In truth, if God does not convert the person’s heart, they are none of His. They must have been born spiritually by the Spirit of God, so that they know the One whom they believe in and so that they will be able, willing and anxious to serve Him as their Lord. They must serve Christ according to what the Bible says, not necesssarily according to what their church may teach…
Matt 7:21-23 – “Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? 23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.”
James 2:19 – “Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.”
Misconception #8: All it takes to become saved is exercising saving faith in Christ.
Now this is where some folks who say they believe in the sovereignty of God are going to start hemming and hawing. They can’t get it out of their minds that even the exercising of one’s faith in Christ is an act of the will and the will of the unsaved is in bondage to sin, blind to the holiness of God and spiritually dead and incapable of having the right kind of faith.
Romans 8:7-8 – “Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. 8 So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.”
True saving faith that is focused on or directed towards the true and living God of scripture is GRANTED by God to the sinner when God saves him or her. It is a gift, like repentance, true repentance, which God also GRANTS to the sinner when He converts the heart of the spiritually dead sinner.
Acts 11:18 – “When they heard these things, they held their peace, and glorified God, saying, Then hath God also to the Gentiles granted repentance unto life.”
Once God puts a new heart and a new spirit in an ungodly sinner, that sinner will receive the gift of faith to know the true God and to worship Him in Spirit and in truth. The object of that saved sinner’s faith will be the true Savior, the One who saves sinners who are yet dead in trespasses and sin, who saves them while they are still in rebellion against the One who bought them by His precious blood.
Romans 5:6-8 – “For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. 7 For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. 8 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”
Do you believe in the Jesus who saves people without the help of anyone else?
SO HOW DOES GOD SAVE SOMEONE?
God saves people through the convicting power of the Holy Spirit and through preaching the Gospel (John 16:7-8, Rom 10:17). So we need to explain what the Gospel is or in other words, what the central message of the Bible is.
The Gospel or Good News of Jesus Christ is God’s plan of salvation. However, God’s plan of salvation can be summarized as follows:
1. ALL ARE SPIRITUALLY LOST – all have sinned and are unfit for heaven, until and unless God saves them. (Rom. 3:10-23)
2. GOD IS HOLY and NO SIN can be in His presence. So even one sin qualifies me for eternal separation from God (James 2:10)
3. ETERNAL PUNISHMENT in hell is the penalty for sin. (Luke 12:4-5, Rev. 14:11, Rev. 20:15)
4. NO WORKS, no human effort of any kind can provide salvation, nor can anyone participate in their salvation (Eph. 2:8-9, Titus 3:5, Isa. 59:1-12, Rom. 10:3)
5. ONLY A DIVINE SUBSTITUTE who pays the complete
penalty for ALL my sins can eliminate the need for me to go to hell (Isa. 43:11, Isa. 63:5)
6. JESUS CHRIST – and ONLY Christ – is that Divine substitute – the “Lamb of God”. (Isa. 43:11, Luke 2:11, Acts 4:12, Isa. 53, John 1:29, Titus 2:13, 3:6)
HOWEVER, A PERSON DOESN’T GET SAVED BY KNOWING OR BELIEVING ALL THE ABOVE. The gospel has to take effect and that requires an act of God… God is the AUTHOR and FINISHER of a person’s salvation.
The Gospel takes effect as the Word of God is proclaimed to lost sinners and as the Holy Spirit uses the Word of God to convict sinners of their sinful condition and to show them the holiness of God.
Romans 10:17 – “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”
Romans 3:20 – “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.”
John 16:7 – “Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you. 8 And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment“
God has designed a salvation program that requires that sinners be taught – through the proclamation of scripture – these things:
1. God has laws.
2. What those laws are.
3. All have broken those laws.
4. The just punishment, according to God, for breaking those laws is eternity in hell.
5. You are at God’s mercy. He does not owe you salvation.
6. Salvation (escaping the judgment of eternal hell) is possible but only if God grants you as an individual a pardon based upon the completed work of Christ (his blood atonement) on the cross of Calvary.
7. Your only hope is to seek God while He there is time (by reading the Bible).
We must not be afraid to tell sinners to repent and tell them why they need to repent!!! God has chosen to use believers to get the Word of God out, to sow it in men’s hearts:
Mark 4:15 – “And these are they by the way side, where the word is sown; but when they have heard, satan cometh immediately, and taketh away the word that was sown in their hearts.”
Once we have preached the Gospel to someone it is up to God to do what He wills with our seed sowing. Nevertheless, we are obligated to pray to the Lord of the harvest to send out workers to water the seed that we sow and to pray to God to have mercy on the souls of men just as Moses interceded for Israel. When it is God’s time to save someone, He will give them new life from above. He will put His Spirit in them.
How do I know if I am one of God’s elect, one for whom Christ died? If and when God converts me, I will come to understand the following spiritual truths:
1. I will recognize who the one true God is: God is man’s creator, and ruler and law giver. He values holiness and justice as much as love. His hatred towards sin is as great as his love for righteousness. (Psa 2:1-5, Psa 5:5-6, Psa 11:5-6, Prov 15:9)
2. I will recognize who I am in relation to God: We are hopelessly lost, rebellious, hell-deserving sinners who want God to be subject to us, our whims, our terms, our conditions, and our brand of religion. (Gen 6:5, Jer 17:9, Isa 53:6, Isa 59:1-4, Prov 13:19, Rom 1, Rom 3:10-12, Rom 3:23, Rom 9:20, Rom 10:3)
3. I will recognize what God expects of me: God expects and deserves total obedience to all His commandments at all times, even though man, because of his sin nature, is incapable of faithful service to God. Man’s corrupt spiritual condition does not free himself from accountability to God. (Matt 5:48, James 2:10)
4. I will recognize that I fall far short of what God expects of me: Even our greatest acts of kindness and charity are considered as filthy rags to God because our motives are tainted with sin until and unless God gives us a new heart and a new spirit. Just one sin can and will separate a person from God for all eternity. (Isa 59:1-8, James 2:10, Rev 21:8&27). Even when we are saved, our motives for doing good things are not always pure. (Gen 6:5, Psa 58:3, Isa 64:6, Jer 17:9) In addition, a saved person cannot take any credit for any “good” works that they do, because it is Christ working in them to do good (Col. 1:27, Heb 13:21).
5. I will recognize the consequences of not living up to God’s expectations: Eternal damnation in hell is the punishment that God has prepared for those who die in their sins. Any punishment less severe than that would detract from the holiness of God and His hatred for sin. (Deut 32:22, 2Thes 1:7-9, Rev 14:11, Rev 20:15)
6. I will recognize the only way of escape from the consequences of not living up to God’s expectations: We need a supernatural scapegoat, who could meet God’s requirements for sinlessness and who could at the same time pay the complete penalty that we owe for all of our sins, past, present and future. We need God Himself, in the person of Jesus Christ, to rescue us from hell and make us fit for heaven in a way that is beyond our capability to reform. (Gen 22:8, Isa 59:16, John 1:29, John 14:6, Acts 4:12)
7. I will truly repent (turn from) my sins: We must cry out to God for mercy, imploring Him to enable us to stop sinning, realizing that we are incapable of changing without God’s help. (Matt 4:17, Luke 13:3, Luke 18:10-14, Acts 2:38, Acts 17:30-31, Acts 26:20, 2Cor 7:10). When we are truly saved, we positively WILL turn from our sins, because we will have power of the Holy Spirit in us enabling us to turn from our sins, even from sins that we did not recognize as sins before we were saved (Ezek. 36:27, Col. 1:27, Heb 13:21). We will have a changed life. We won’t yet be capable of perfect obedience to God but we will have a great desire to please Him and to obey Him commandments in the Bible. People whom we have known in the past won’t like the change in us if they have not been changed by God.
8. I will believe on Christ, the REAL Christ, not a false Christ who cannot save me without my help, my efforts or the efforts of my church, etc.: Throwing ourselves on the mercy of God, we must trust in Christ alone and the work HE ALREADY DID in subjecting Himself to the full fury of the terrible wrath of God when He suffered and died at Calvary. We need to believe that He was buried and on the third day He arose from the grave, claiming victory over death and proving that He is eternal God and proving that God the Father was completely satisfied with the work that Christ did on the behalf of sinners, that Christ’s work was complete and all-sufficient payment for all the sins of all the people Jesus came to save. (Mark 16:16, John 3:18, John 8:24, Acts 16:31, Rom 19:9-10, 1Cor 15:19-20, Heb 10:12-14)
9. I will understand that I need God to make me spiritually alive, a new creature in Christ: Only God can make a person acceptable to Himself. Salvation is a transaction between a sinner and God. If God saves a sinner, He credits the sinner with the perfect righteousness of Christ (Php 3:9) and places all the sins of the sinner on Christ (Isa 53:4-5). God must put His Spirit in a person before they will ever be able to stand in His presence in heaven. In doing that, God imparts a new nature in the person and their attitude towards sin changes. God causes them to turn away from sin and to recognize Jesus Christ as their Saviour and Lord. This is a supernatural act of God that is not initiated by water baptism or by any other human effort. (Jonah 2:9, John 3:3, 2 Cor 5:17, Ezek 36:25-27)
Can we do any of the above things if we are spiritually dead? Absolutely not! God must enable us to do these things:
John 6:44 – “No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.”
God is the One who gives us eye salve and opens our blind eyes to the truth of who God is and who we are and He does this by resurrecting our spiritually dead soul:
John 11:25 – “Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: 26 And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?”
God does it all when it comes to a person becoming saved:
Ezekiel 36:25 – “Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean: from all your filthiness, and from all your idols, will I cleanse you. 26 A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh. 27 And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them.”
So what do we do with all this information about the Gospel? Well, if we are like most professing Bible-believing Christians, we will not like it. We may agree that the Gospel is of utmost importance but we won’t like to present it the way it was explained above. This really means that we do not like to give people the whole counsel of God… because it may offend them. And offend is exactly what God says HIS Gospel will do:
Matthew 15:8 – “This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me. 9 But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. 10 And he called the multitude, and said unto them, Hear, and understand: 11 Not that which goeth into the mouth defileth a man; but that which cometh out of the mouth, this defileth a man. 12 Then came his disciples, and said unto him, Knowest thou that the Pharisees were offended, after they heard this saying? 13 But he answered and said, Every plant, which my heavenly Father hath not planted, shall be rooted up. 14 Let them alone: they be blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch.”
Is not the “free-will” gospel a doctrine that represents the commandments of men? … men who are so spiritually blind, lost and hopeless that they are COMPLETELY at the mercy of God to save them lest they suffer the eternal consequences of their sins. It’s certainly much more pleasant to believe we have the “free-will” to turn to God any time we feel like it and get Him to let us into heaven, even at the last minute by exercising “simple faith” (whatever that is) and by saying a “sinner’s prayer” at the back of some 4-spiritual-laws pamphlet.
For those of us who are truly Christ’s: should we worry if preaching the truth about God’s sovereignty and His NARROW way of salvation offends or causes “disunity”? Should God’s people want unity with those who deny the truth of God’s sovereignty, the truth of man’s lostness, the truth of what Christ accomplished at the cross and the truth of God’s narrow plan of salvation?
2 Cor 6:14 – “Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?”
Do you really believe that salvation is ENTIRELY of the Lord and requires no cooperation from the sinner whatsoever? Do you believe that Christ died for His people and His people alone? Do you believe that man – when yet unsaved – is spiritually dead, in bondage to sin, unable to turn to God, in rebellion to God and is wicked and ungodly from the perspective of a thrice-holy God, even when on his best behavior?
If you don’t believe these things that the Bible declares to be absolutely true, then doesn’t that make YOU an UNBELIEVER?
Acts 13:38 – “Be it known unto you therefore, men and brethren, that through this man is preached unto you the forgiveness of sins: 39 And by him all that believe are justified from all things, from which ye could not be justified by the law of Moses. 40 Beware therefore, lest that come upon you, which is spoken of in the prophets; 41 Behold, ye despisers, and wonder, and perish: for I work a work in your days, a work which ye shall in no wise believe, though a man declare it unto you.”
What Gospel are YOU trusting in?
“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]
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Christ Died For The Ungodly
by Horatius Bonar
The divine testimony concerning man is, that he is a sinner. God bears witness against him, not for him; and testifies that "there is none righteous, no, not one"; that there is "none that doeth good"; none "that understandeth"; none that even seeks after God, and, still more, none that loves Him (Psa. 14:1-3; Rom. 3:10-12). God speaks of man kindly, but severely; as one yearning over a lost child, yet as one who will make no terms with sin, and will "by no means clear the guilty." <continued>