Theology of Grace

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There is a large portion of the brotherhood who regard salvation by grace through faith not only as a new testament doctrine but only a Pauline doctrine. Grace Theology, the subject of this study, believes that Paul was the first person in the Bible to be saved by grace through faith alone without works.

Theology of Grace

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D. Paul Walker

So they read in the book in the law of God distinctly, and gave the sense, and caused them to understand the reading.

Nehemiah 8:8


Introduction

But we believe that through the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ we shall be saved, even as they.

Acts 15:11

A significant portion of the Christian brotherhood regard salvation by grace through faith as not only a new testament doctrine but a doctrine that was first instituted with the calling out of Paul and his ministry to the Gentiles. Grace Theology, the subject of this study contends that there are two gospel one for Gentiles and a different one for Jews, at least before and after the Church age. Within the purview of Grace Theology, there is a verity of teachings, variations on the same theme, some even as far as stating that Paul was the first person saved by grace without works. In fact trying to correlate the variety of different variations can be quite difficult.

This study will only be concern with two ideas that are corner stones of this theology. Those ideas are whether salvation by grace is just a Pauline doctrine and before and after his time, the times of the Gentiles, or dispensation of grace, an element of works was and will be involved. The main tenet of this Theology is that Paul preached a different gospel to the Gentiles than Christ Jesus, Peter, John, James, and others to the Jews. It is contended by some that they preached a gospel of works, or partially by works unto the Jews, that Peter was sent to the Jews with a different gospel than Paul’s being sent to the gentiles.

Depending on how far you take this division of the gospels determines how great an error it is. Most of the information obtained indicates that Grace Theology holds to salvation being open to all, both Jew and Gentile, today by grace through faith without works. It is not the contention that these preach another gospel today but that the gospel preached through the Old Testament and by Christ and the Apostles with him and in the tribulation was and will be another gospel, one of works for salvation.

However, if it is taught that there is a still a Jewish gospel different than Paul’s, one of works that must be preach to Israel, then it would indeed be deceitful and pernicious. It is difficult to filter as not all that is taught concerned with Grace Theology by its different advocates is in agreement with each other. This theology is certainly not being singled out on this point as it is the same with most theologies and this can make it difficult to discuss the common ground within any of them.

It is believed that this doctrine is incorrect and therefore must be examined with all diligence. It is a little leaven which is attempting to leaven all. Regardless of whether we see any immediate corruption of the gospel today it certainly will corrupt the way of salvation in the future, in the Tribulation.

The way this study understands Grace Theology is that it believes that salvation by grace through faith without works was a mystery given to Paul for the times of the Gentiles and that our Lord, Peter, John, James, Matthew, Luke and the Jewish believers preached to the Jews a different gospel. It seems, whether or not it is admitted, that the Jewish gospel required an element of works for salvation. This difference is such that they teach that John 3:16 is a Jewish gospel that will not lead to gentile salvation today.

This study will attempt to show, hopefully to the satisfaction of all, from the Scriptures:

  1. that our Lord, Peter, James, John, Matthew, and all the others, preached the same gospel that Paul preached

  2. that works play no part in salvation at any time under any dispensation

These are not minor biblical topics not to be worried about. Not understanding them will prevent and cloud the understanding of the whole of God’s word.

If the first teaching of Grace Theology fails biblical examination the whole system fails. The second closes a door to the first. As stated in other studies, men have a tendency to learn something the wrong way and stick to it no matter what for many reasons, all bad, rather than learn to diligently study, rightly divide God’s word, and prove all things for themselves.

This contention is spiritual as all the battles over God’s word. The same claims of defending the word, rightly dividing, and holding to the King James Version, will be made on all sides, however, keep in mind that the confusion of having two gospels is certainly not of God as he is not the author of confusion but of our one faith.

1 Corinthians 14:33 For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints.

Hebrews 12:2 KJV Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.


The Gospel

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

There are several gospels in the Scriptures:

Matthew 4:23the gospel of the kingdom,…

Mark 1:1the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God;

Romans 10:15the gospel of peace, …

Mark 1:14the gospel of the kingdom of God,

Acts 20:24the gospel of the grace of God.

Romans 1:1the gospel of God,

Romans 10:15the gospel of peace,…

Galatians 2:7the gospel of the uncircumcision the gospel of the circumcision

Ephesians 1:13the gospel of your salvation:…

Revelation 14:6the everlasting gospel

The best definition for the word ‘gospel’ is truth. It is the truth about whatever you are speaking of.

Ephesians 1:13 In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation:...

If we are to understand the Scriptures, we should be able to understand one gospel from another if there are any that are different. However, what concerns this study is just one, “the gospel of your salvation” and whether or not Christ Jesus, Peter, John and all the rest preached the same gospel as Paul.

Jesus was the “Lamb slain from the foundation of the world”

Revelation 13:8 And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.

There was only one lamb slain from the foundation of the world, one plan of salvation. The gospel of Christ being born of a virgin, our sins being laid on him, his dying for them, and being raised from the dead, are all subjects of prophecy taught before he was born. Even Paul states such.

1 Corinthians 15:3-4 For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; 4And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:

The gospel Paul preached was not a mystery “kept secret since the world began.” It was according to the Scriptures and at that time it could only be a reference to the Old Testament.

The gospel of salvation that the Lord preached was that you had to believe in and on him, what he said about himself, and what he was going to do.

John 5:39 Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.

John 8:24 I said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins: for if ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins.

Mark 8:31 And he began to teach them, that the Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected of the elders, and of the chief priests, and scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again.

Our Lord preached to believe in him and that he was to be crucified, die, be buried, and rise the third day. It must be asked, what is the difference in the Lord pointing to it in the future and preaching believe it and Paul pointing to it in the past and preaching believe it?

Mark 8:31the Son of man must suffer many things, and be killed, and after three days rise again.

John 3:14-16 And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up:... 16For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Compare the above preaching of Christ’s with that of Paul’s:

1 Corinthians 15:1-4 Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you,… how that Christ died for our sins... 4And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:

Are the two different gospels? What is the difference in the two besides the one pointing ahead and the other pointing back?

John 8:28 Then said Jesus unto them, When ye have lifted up the Son of man, then shall ye know that I am he,…

Then shall ye know,” it was to the Jews under the law that Christ stated that they would know the truth after he made his sacrifice. Naturally, if they had been enlightened before hand they would not have crucified him.

1 Corinthians 2:8 Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.

There may seem to be differences in the administration of the gospel before and after his resurrection which is understandable as no one could receive the Holy Spirit before he made the atonement. The way had to be prepared for the understanding of the gospel.

It is taught by some that John the Baptist’s preaching is the same as that of Christ, Peter, John, James, etc. This is not true. John the Baptist was not preaching the gospel of salvation but the remission, personal forgiveness, of sins in preparation for the gospel; he was preparing the way to it.

Matthew 3:3 For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.

John preached baptism for the remission of sins. Remission of sins is not salvation, it is forgiveness of sins. Remission, forgiveness, of sins is only half of what you need for salvation. John the Baptist was preparing the way for faith in the atonement for sins, the payment for sins, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.”

When the Lord arrived on the scene he preached that he was the fulfillment of the prophecies concerning the Messiah, that he must suffer, die, and rise from the grave on the third day. The gospel he preached is the same as the one Paul preached.

The Jews were waiting for their Messiah and the restoration of their kingdom, gospel of the kingdom.” However, believing Christ Jesus was the Messiah and that he was going to restore the kingdom would not save them from their sins. Neither would remission of sins save them without the atonement for all sin. You have to have the atonement, payment, for sins and personal remission, forgiveness for sins. The Old Testament saints had their sins forgiven but could not receive full salvation until the Lord made the atonement for sin.1

John 7:39 (But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.)

Hebrews 11:13 These all died in faith, not having received the promises,…

Ezekiel 36:27 And I will put my spirit within you,…

Christ Jesus having made the atonement for sin, the payment for all sins now hving been made we need personal remission, forgiveness, of sins upon which we receive the Holy Spirit of God and the adoption of sons.

There is a period in the book of Acts were a couple of transitions takes place one is between before the atonement when they obtained remission of sins and after the atonement for sin when they could believe on the resurrected Lord obtaining full salvation from sin. That is, you could receive, be baptisted unto, remission, or forgiveness, of sins before the atonement and then after the atonement be pointed to faith in Christ and be baptist unto him to receive the atonement for sin receiving full salvation and the Holy Spirit. After the atonement sin is paid for and we are pointed to faith in Christ for the remission of our sins receiving full salvation and the Holy Spirit.

This causes some misunderstandings in the book of Acts. At the beginning the Lord is still dealing with Israel on a national level until the martyrdom of Steven. At that point Israel as a nation is set aside for later and the transition from the old covenant into the new covenant of a Church consisting of Jew and Gentile is brought in.

Nevertheless, the gospel before and after remained the same, “saved by grace through faith.”

Galatians 3:8 And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed.

Romans 4:13 For the promise, that he should be the heir of the world, was not to Abraham, or to his seed, through the law, but through the righteousness of faith.

The gospel is “saved by grace through faith” at all times, to all peoples. The Lord, Peter, James, John, Matthew, Luke, et al, preached the same gospel as Paul. This is affirmed in Acts 15 at the great apostolic council where Peter, John, James, Paul, and many others, concluded that keeping the law was not necessary for Jew or Gentile to be saved.

Acts 15:10 Now therefore why tempt ye God, to put a yoke upon the neck of the disciples, which neither our fathers nor we were able to bear?

Acts 15:11 But we believe that through the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ we shall be saved, even as they.

We; the Jews, Peter, James, John, Paul, et al., believed that they were saved the same way as the Gentiles?by God’s grace.

Genesis 6:8 But Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD.

Romans 4:16 Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace;…

Romans 11:6 And if by grace, then is it no more of works:...

Grace Theology will go so far as to teach that Paul was the first person saved by grace through faith without works. However, Paul preached the same faith he once destroyed.

Galatians 1:23 But they had heard only, That he which persecuted us in times past now preacheth the faith which once he destroyed.

It was the same faith, same gospel, that Paul preached that he once persecuted. The importance of this is it shows that the gospel Paul preached was being preached before he was converted. Paul’s gospel was not new, not a mystery hidden until revealed to him but the same faith, same gospel, he had been persecuting.

Another disputed tenet of Grace Theology is that the gospel of the circumcision is different than the gospel of the uncircumcision.

Galatians 2:7-9 But contrariwise, when they saw that the gospel of the uncircumcision was committed unto me, as the gospel of the circumcision was unto Peter; 8(For he that wrought effectually in Peter to the apostleship of the circumcision, the same was mighty in me toward the Gentiles:) 9And when James, Cephas, and John, who seemed to be pillars, perceived the grace that was given unto me, they gave to me and Barnabas the right hands of fellowship; that we should go unto the heathen, and they unto the circumcision.

There is a problem for Grace Theology in teaching this. If there are two gospels of salvation, one for the Jews and one for the Gentiles, what is the difference? There is only one name under heaven given whereby men must be saved. He gave himself once for all, not willing that any should perish, there is but one Holy Spirit which all receive. This is Paul’s gospel. In order to make two different gospels something has to be added or taken away from this. What do they have that they can take away from Paul’s gospel, the Lord, the Holy Spirit, the one sacrifice? There is nothing that can be taken away. What do they have they can add to Paul’s gospel to make Peter’s gospel different? There is only one thing?works. It manners not that some teaching Grace Theology do not admit to teaching works for the Jews, work is all they have to add to make the gospels different.

The teaching that the two gospels in Galatians are different is the product of taking the terms out of the context of not only their sentence but chapter, book, and the Bible as a whole.

The correct interpretation of the phrases “the gospel of the circumcision” and “the gospel of the uncircumcision” is found by keeping the context of chapter two by not forgetting what you should have just read in chapter one.

Galatians 1:6-7 I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: 7Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ.

Paul states that it is really not another gospel they are getting messed up with but a perversion of the gospel of the grace of God. Some one is adding to or taking away from this gospel. We know that which is being added is works.

Galatians 3:2 This only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?

We know that Paul is preaching the same faith he persecuted.

Galatians 1:23 But they had heard only, That he which persecuted us in times past now preacheth the faith which once he destroyed.

Take note, also, that it was not Gentiles but the Jewish Christians he was persecuting.

Acts 9:1-2 And Saul, yet breathing out threatenings and slaughter against the disciples of the Lord, went unto the high priest, 2And desired of him letters to Damascus to the synagogues, that if he found any of this way, whether they were men or women, he might bring them bound unto Jerusalem.

Roman Gentiles did not come under the control of the Jewish High Priest so the gospel he preach was the same that he persecuted which was the same gospel the Jews were saved by.

1 Corinthians 1:11-13 For it hath been declared unto me of you, my brethren, by them which are of the house of Chloe, that there are contentions among you. 12Now this I say, that every one of you saith, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas; and I of Christ. 13Is Christ divided? was Paul crucified for you? or were ye baptized in the name of Paul?

Is Christ divided?” Who is causing the contention in the Church? Is it not those that say the gospel is divided, that they are of Paul?

1 Corinthians 3:4 For while one saith, I am of Paul; and another, I am of Apollos; are ye not carnal?

Later in Galatians chapter two Paul shows again that there is but one gospel for Jew and Gentile. When Peter, who was enjoying the fellowship of the Gentiles in so much that he was eating with them, described by Paul as living like them, heard that some Jewish believers sent from James where coming he decided he needed to be a Jew again.

Galatians 2:11-12 But when Peter was come to Antioch, I withstood him to the face, because he was to be blamed.  12For before that certain came from James, he did eat with the Gentiles: but when they were come, he withdrew and separated himself, fearing them which were of the circumcision.

Paul takes notice and rebukes the Jews for trying to make two gospels and reminds them there is but one.

Galatians 2:14 But when I saw that they walked not uprightly according to the truth of the gospel,...

In rebuking Peter for trying to divide the gospel into two, one Jewish, one Gentile, we get Paul’s dissertation on the Jewish gospel.

Galatians 2:15-16 We who are Jews by nature, and not sinners of the Gentiles,

We, Paul’s says, being natural born Jews and not Gentile converts.

16Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ,

We, Jews, know that no man is justified by the works of the law, but salvation is through grace by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.

even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.

As Paul states, we being Jews, know that no works can save us. There is but one gospel preach by both Paul, Peter, James, John, and the Lord Jesus Christ. There are two ministries, one to the Jews and one to the Gentiles. This is by no means absolute as both Paul and Peter preached to both Jew and Gentil.

Ephesians 2:11-17 Wherefore remember, that ye being in time past Gentiles in the flesh, who are called Uncircumcision by that which is called the Circumcision in the flesh made by hands; 13But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ. 14For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us; 15Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace; 16And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby: 17And came and preached peace to you which were afar off, and to them that were nigh.

The middle wall of partition between us,” spoken of here was the barrier to keep Gentiles from entering the temple, “between us.” Remember, Paul was accused of bringing a Gentile into the temple.

Acts 21:28 Crying out, Men of Israel, help: This is the man, that teacheth all men every where against the people, and the law, and this place: and further brought Greeks also into the temple, and hath polluted this holy place.

With Christ atonement there is no difference between Jew and Gentile. How can there be a difference in the gospel?

Acts 15:8-9 And God, which knoweth the hearts, bare them witness, giving them the Holy Ghost, even as he did unto us; 9And put no difference between us and them, purifying their hearts by faith.

Romans 3:22 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:

Romans 10:11-12 For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. 12For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him.

There is no difference between Jew and Gentile!! How then can there be two gospels?? Put no difference between us and them, purifying their hearts by faith.” God was giving both, Jew and Gentil, the Holy Ghost and purifying their hearts by faith alone before Paul’s conversion and ministry.

If you accept all of what Paul said, how do you get two gospels?

 


 

Dispensations

If ye have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which is given me to you-ward:

Ephesians 3:2

Dispensational teaching is the dividing of the Bible into divisions of time or ages. The usual division are:

  1. Innocence—Adam and Eve before they sinned

  2. Conscience—First sin to the flood

  3. Civil Government—After the flood, government

  4. Promise—Abraham to Moses, the Law is given

  5. Law—Moses to the cross

  6. Grace—Cross to the millennial kingdom

  7. Millennial Kingdom—The rule of Christ on earth in the millennial kingdom

There is one very grave mistake with these divisions. Salvation at any time is by the grace of God. Being so means that it is by faith to the exclusion of any and all works and never by any other way.

Romans 11:5-6 Even so then at this present time also there is a remnant according to the election of grace. 6And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace: otherwise work is no more work.

All dispensations, however differently God was dealing with men, are all a dispensation of God’s grace: Grace = faith without works.

Part of Grace Theology’s mistake is going by this mistaken believe that the grace of God is covered by just one dispensation. Grace Theology is also known as Hyper Dispensationalism due their teaching that Paul was given the dispensation of grace with a different gospel to go with it.

This too is derived at by taking things out of context and not diligently comparing Scripture with Scripture. Paul was not given THE dispensation of grace he was given A dispensation of grace.

1 Corinthians 9:17 For if I do this thing willingly, I have a reward: but if against my will, a dispensation of the gospel is committed unto me.

Paul was given A dispensation of the gospel” which according to him was a dispensation of the grace of god.

Ephesians 3:2 If ye have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which is given me to you-ward:

If I give you A pencil then you have THE pencil I gave you and you can say, see THE pencil which was given to me. But, it is still A pencil, one of many. So here is one gospel separated into several dispensations, “a dispensation of the gospel.” The dispensation Paul was given was one dispensation of the same gospel.

Colossians 1:25 Whereof I am made a minister, according to the dispensation of God which is given to me for you, to fulfil the word of God;

Paul was given a ministry, a dispensation of the gospel of the grace of God to the Gentiles. It was not a different gospel but a different ministry, the ministry of the grace of God to the heathen, those that had not the law.

Romans 2:14 For when the Gentiles, which have not the law,…

Why would it be that Paul was given the ministry to the Gentiles and not Peter? Could it be that the Gentiles “which have not the law” would not benefit from the law as a school master to bring them unto Christ.

Galatians 3:24 Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.

Possible the ministry needed someone to explain the law and its purpose to them, a doctor of the law: Dr. Saul of Tarsus, PhD., graduate of the school of Gamaliel, taught according to the perfect manner of the law of the fathers.

1 Corinthians 9:8 Say I these things as a man? or saith not the law the same also?

It could be they were in need of a little tutelage so that they would not be deceived by another or perverted gospel.

Galatians 3:12 And the law is not of faith:…

Galatians 3:28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.

Paul was sent to explain the law prophesying and pointing to Christ to the Gentiles who did not have the law to begin with. Paul talks of “the Law” 128 times in his writings. To kick start the Church among the Gentiles someone had to instruct them in the law so they would know what they were being saved from.

Yes, Paul was given a special dispensation of the one true gospel of the grace of God. A ministry to the Gentiles not a separated gospel.


Not of Works

And enter not into judgment with thy servant: for in thy sight shall no man living be justified.

Psalm 143:2

As stated above, to make the gospels different, one for Jews and one of Gentiles, you have to add to or diminish from the gosple Paul preached.

1 Corinthians 15:1-8 Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you,… 3For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; 4And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures: 5And that he was seen of Cephas, then of the twelve: 6After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep. 7After that, he was seen of James; then of all the apostles. 8And last of all he was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time.

It is supposed by the advocates of Grace Theology that when he was seen of Paul after being seen of all the rest that he told Paul something different than he told the others.

Paul sets out his gospel so there is nothing that can be taken away from it. You are left with adding to it to create a Jewish gospel and as stated above there is nothing to add except an element of works. Grace Theology is taught by some that salvation prior to, Old Testament, and after the times of the Gentiles, the tribulation, was and will include an element of works.

Two things, however, it is a universal precept of Scripture that God will not accept any man’s righteousness, no man’s works. The second, the Bible is clear on works, that it nullifies grace and faith. That is, there is no element of works, it is either salvation by works or salvation by grace through faith, the only two religions in the world. You cannot mix them.

Romans 11:5-6 Even so then at this present time also there is a remnant according to the election of grace. 6And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace: otherwise work is no more work.

Psalms 143:1-2in thy sight shall no man living be justified.

Not by works is a universal precept of God’s word,2 “in thy sight shall no man living be justified,” if by grace, then is it no more of works.” How is it then that Grace Theology says Old Testament and Tribulation saints are saved by faith and works?

It is also disturbing that Grace Theology claims to be adhering to Paul’s writings while it appears that they ignor half of what Paul says. They will not deny that salvation is by God’s grace but reject the fact that Paul tell us that grace and works are mutually exclusive, one cannot exist with the other.

Romans 11:6 And if by grace, then is it no more of works:.. if it be of works, then is it no more grace:

Take note that Paul is speaking of the Jews when he says this.

Romans 11:1 I say then, Hath God cast away his people? God forbid. For I also am an Israelite, of the seed of Abraham, of the tribe of Benjamin.

Salvation at any time, pre-crucifixion, post-crucifixion, tribulation, is by grace through faith, not of works. Noah and Abraham being examples to show it is a universal precept of God’s word and not a Pauline mystery. This is not difficult to explain. If salvation included any works to achieve anyone obtaining it would be glorifying himself, not God.

Ephesians 2:9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.

1 Corinthians 1:29 That no flesh should glory in his presence.

We are here to glorify God, not boast ourselves.

Not of works” is a universal biblical precept, not just a church age, dispensational, or Pauline, teaching. Eternal salvation is never by works, alone or in concert with grace. Any teaching to the contrary is not biblical, not Christian doctrine. Unless this precept is accepted you will error in the formation of doctrine and teachings as those teaching Grace Theology have.3

Romans 4:14 For if they which are of the law be heirs, faith is made void, and the promise made of none effect:

A major stumbling block to their thinking is misinterpreting biblical works. The Bible defines works as the keeping of God’s law, as given by moses, to establish your own self-righteousness. Whether you are a Jew and have the law or a gentile without the law it is the same.

Romans 2:13 (For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified.

Just doing what God told you to do is not the works of the law but the trial of your faith. Noah building the Ark was not a work of obeying the law, it was an act of faith, “it is of faith, that it might be by grace.”

Genesis 6:8 But Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD.

Abraham sacrificing his son was not a work of obeying the law, it was a trial of his faith.

1 Peter 1:7 That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:…

Hebrews 11:17 By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Isaac: and he that had received the promises offered up his only begotten son,…

Being told to do something by God is not the same as doing the works of the law given by God to Moses. Being baptized for the remission of sins is not a work of the law, not a work period. It was a witness of the faith put in God’s word that was being preached. It was also God’s judgment and a snare on those that would not put their faith in his word.

Mark 11:30-32 The baptism of John, was it from heaven, or of men? answer me. 31And they reasoned with themselves, saying, If we shall say, From heaven; he will say, Why then did ye not believe him? 32But if we shall say, Of men; they feared the people: for all men counted John, that he was a prophet indeed.

Baptism is not a work. If someone had just followed the group and had been baptized by John, would they have received remission of sins?No. John’s baptism was not only not a work it was not salvation.

Acts 19:4 Then said Paul, John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus.

If by grace, then is it no more of works,” “it is of faith, that it might be by grace,” if it is by grace there is no element of works. It is either works or grace and God will not accept any man’s works. He will accept the faith that provoked and caused the works.

Hebrews 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please him:…

Romans 4:16 Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace;…

Romans 11:6 And if by grace, then is it no more of works:.. if it be of works, then is it no more grace

Hebrews chapter eleven is filled with the examples of Old Testament saints and their faith toward God, “it is of faith, that it might be by grace:” It is their faith that found them grace in God’s eyes, not their works.


In Closing

Now this I say, that every one of you saith, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas; and I of Christ.

1 Corinthians 1:12

It has been seen that Paul was given A dispensation of the gospel” which a to him was the dispensation of the grace of God” given him to minister to the Gentiles. Paul was the foremost defender of there being but one gospel, one faith, with no difference between Jew and Gentile.

It has been shown that there is nothing that can be taken away from Paul’s gospel to make it different than Peter’s. Further, works being the only thing that could be added to it nullified grace and faith, nullifying the gospel.

Job 25:4 How then can man be justified with God? or how can he be clean that is born of a woman?

Paul most assuredly did not preach a divided Church, a dual gospel.

Ephesians 4:4-6 There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; 5One Lord, one faith, one baptism, 6One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.

Paul preach one undivided gospel and a curse on anyone who preached another. Grace Theology is divisive in that they say thay are of Paul and the Jews are of Peter.

1 Corinthians 1:23-24 But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks foolishness; 24But unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God.

Romans 15:16 That I should be the minister of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles, ministering the gospel of God, that the offering up of the Gentiles might be acceptable, being sanctified by the Holy Ghost.

Ministering the Gospel of God” to the Gentiles, not the gospel of the Gentiles, not the gospel of the uncircumcision to the uncircumcision.

Galatians 1:8-9 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. 9As 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.

It has never been by the act of doing what God said to obtain righteousness but by doing it out of faith toward him. Salvation has always been and always will be by God’s grace through faith in him which excludes works of any kind.

Romans 4:4 Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt.

It seems apparent that Grace Theology has not completely made it clear over the stumblingstone.”

Job 19:25 For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth:

Paul was given a dispensation of the gospel,” the gospel of the grace of God,” not a unique dispensation particular to its own special gospel for Gentiles.

1 Corinthians 9:17 For if I do this thing willingly, I have a reward: but if against my will, a dispensation of the gospel is committed unto me.

It was just one of several dispensations of the gospel. It has always been a gospel of grace that was divided into dispensations, grace throughout all dispensations. Salvation by the gospel of grace through faith was not a mystery solely given to Paul. Granted, Noah, Job, Abraham, and the Old Testament saints might not have known that their salvation was contingent upon the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ Jesus for the payment of sins, but it was upon their faith that God granted them his grace and forgiveness of sins.4

Paul minister to both Jew and Gentile. After his pronouncement of a curse on any other gospel, I doubt he preached a different one to the Jews,

Romans 15:25 But now I go unto Jerusalem to minister unto the saints.

Romans chapter fifteen is an excellent exhortation of the unity of the Jew and Gentile Church and the one gospel Paul preached. In it we have the gospel of God, the gospel of Christ, and the gospel all synonymous with one another, verses 16, 19, 20 & 29.

Romans 15:16 That I should be the minister of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles, ministering the gospel of God,….

Romans 15:19 ...I have fully preached the gospel of Christ.

Romans 15:20 Yea, so have I strived to preach the gospel…

Romans 15:29 ...I shall come in the fulness of the blessing of the gospel of Christ.

These gospels are surely synonymous with these:

Ephesians 1:13 ...the gospel of your salvation:…

Ephesians 6:15 ...the gospel of peace;

2 Thessalonians 1:8 ...the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ:

Acts 20:24 ...the gospel of the grace of God.

Surely, these are the same gospel, the same one that was to be preached to all nations and every creature.

Mark 13:10 And the gospel must first be published among all nations.

Mark 16:15 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

Taking all into consideration, how can it be asserted that there is more than one gospel of the saving grace of God through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ? There is only one other gospel in the Scriptures and that is the gospel of the kingdom wich concerns Israel as a nation and the restoration of its kingdom in the millennium.

The consequences of this error might not be clearly seen at this time, but it is a false understanding of God’s word. As such it can only bring harm to the gospel of salvation if only by the confusion and division it causes within the Church of God. Where this theology began does not have to be known, we only have to diligently study and rightly divide God’s word to understand that it is in error.

All of what has been said in this study must be considered and explained away in order for Grace Theology to maintain itself. There are brothers that will stick to their guns no matter what, for many reasons, all bad. The one fact that is sure is that they reject half of what Paul, the apostle they claim as theirs, says. Then there are false brethren, false apostles, false prophets, false teachers, and Satan and his minions, bringing in damnable heresies. This is not a pointed condemnation of anyone, it is just a fact. Many advocating this doctrine have been soul winners, as I stated at the beginning, this doctrine as taught by most of its advocates does not corrupt salvation now, at this time. However, the many deceivers we are warned about is the reason each and every one of us needs to know and study the Bible for themselves.

Nothing less than a whole Bible can make a whole Christian.

AW. Tozer 1897—1963

Of which salvation the prophets have enquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you:

1 Peter 1:10