Long ago, Judah placed her trust in foreign alliances and military strength. Instead of trusting in
Jehovah God, Judah decided to trust in her own wisdom. Through the prophet Isaiah, God said,
"For it is a rebellious people, lying children, children that will not hear the law of Jehovah;
that say to the seers, See not; and to the prophets, Prophesy not unto us right things, speak unto
us smooth things, prophesy deceits." (Isa. 30:9-10 ASV).
The attitude that prevailed in Isaiah's day had not changed very much during the time in which the apostle Paul lived. People have always chosen to be impressed with their own worldly wisdom. Paul penned, "For the word of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us who are saved it is the power of God. For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, And the discernment of the discerning will I bring to nought. Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? For seeing that in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom knew not God, it was God's good pleasure through the foolishness of the preaching to save them that believe." (1 Cor. 1:18-21 ASV).
The old fashioned Jerusalem gospel is not very appealing to today's entertainment crazed society. Most people today want drama and testimonials that produce "goose pimples" and "excitement." They want to rock and sway to the music and give "high-fives" to one another. The message of the apostle Paul is not accepted or appreciated by the majority of today's society who profess to be religious. Paul said, "I marvel that ye are so quickly removing from him that called you in the grace of Christ unto a different gospel; which is not another gospel only there are some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. But though we, or an angel from heaven, should preach unto you any gospel other than that which we preached unto you, let him be anathema." (Gal. 1:6-8 ASV).
The apostle Paul would also "marvel" today that so many brethren are being swept away by the "smooth and fair speech" of those who "serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly." (Rom. 16:18 ASV). Why are people so eager to believe some doctrine that cannot be found in God's word? The Bible teaches that there is only one gospel, and it alone is, "the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth..." (Rom. 1:16 ASV).
It is amazing that people convince themselves they must "feel" a certain way before they can be saved. A chilling sensation does not have to overpower one, nor must the heart go "pitter-patter" in order for the gospel to be obeyed. Whatever happened to intellectual decisions based upon the evidence that one has carefully studied? The Bereans were not commended for working themselves into an emotional frenzy so they would be able to separate the truth from false doctrine. The Scriptures declare, "Now these were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of the mind, examining the Scriptures daily, whether these things were so." (Acts 17:11 ASV).
The gospel is powerful and effective without adding to it the testimonials of man. Moses taught, "Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish from it, that ye may keep the commandments of Jehovah your God which I command you." (Deut. 4:2 ASV). In his vision, John said, "I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, if any man shall add unto them, God shall add unto him the plagues which are written in this book: and if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part from the tree of life, and out of the holy city, which are written in this book." (Rev. 22:18-19 ASV). The principle is clear that man cannot "add to" or "take from" the Holy Scriptures with God's approval.
Bible authority is necessary for all that one does in religion. One's worship and service in the kingdom must comply with the will of God. It makes no difference what I want or prefer, but it does matter what God wants or prefers. Read the Bible and see what God's Word says. If you sincerely love Him, you will do what He says to do!
God has chosen to save mankind through obedience to the gospel. Those who received and obeyed God's Word on Pentecost were saved (Acts 2:41 ASV). Those who choose to "know not God" and "obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus" will be eternally lost (1 Thess. 1:8-9 ASV).
Mark it down! We have been given "all things that pertain to life and godliness." (2 Pet. 1:3 ASV). God's prophets of old were not the problem, and neither are gospel preachers and the gospel they preach the problem. The problem lies within the heart of man.
The gospel of Christ is sufficient to save all who will believe and obey!