There is of course, but one gospel, we should all know that, but you wouldn’t think that when reading what people who are believers actually do believe about salvation and the gospel. And today within some Dispensationalist teaching there are actually two gospels presented. One gospel of the kingdom for Israel, and one gospel of grace for Gentiles.
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life (John 3:16 KJV).
This is a very clear statement with only one requirement. That requirement is belief in Jesus as the Son of God. So, yes there is a limitation. It is belief. It is not — are you Jew or are you Gentile. It is not — are you chosen or are you not. The issue then becomes — who is the gospel actually for?
But when Jesus heard that, he said unto them, They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick. But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.
Matthew 9:12-13 KJV
There are those among us who struggle with this as it is stated. There are those who add to what Jesus said here, and believe that God created some sinners for another purpose — to serve Him as sinners, resulting in their remaining sick. So, did He come to save sinners?
In Romans chapters 8-10 there is teaching seemingly in opposition to what Jesus stated above. How can that be? Either there is a misunderstanding in the one or in the other, but which?
If we analyze what Jesus said, perhaps we can understand better what is meant.
“But when Jesus heard that, he said unto them,” — what did He hear? Jesus was accused of eating with tax collectors and sinners. Do you think that Jesus did not know that all men are sinners? So if He did, why did He say:
“They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick.” What is He saying if He knows that all are sick? There really are none that are whole. He continues: “But go ye and learn what that meaneth,” So, He does want us to think about, pray about and learn its meaning. What then does He mean?
He knows that all men are sinners, as do we if we study the scripture. There however, are those who do not think themselves to be sinners. Is this what He is saying: I cannot help these people? And then, if this is the case, then these according to Romans would be predestined to His wrath, not because He was not going to die for them (they are sinners), but because they refuse to admit their sin. They can not see it, they cannot hear it even when they are told. He even said of these same types when He was suffering on the cross: “Father forgive them for they know not what they do”. He goes on to say in our verse:
“I will have mercy, and not sacrifice:” What does this mean?
Scripturally for Jesus to have mercy there must be an acknowledgement by the sinner of his sinful condition. Then He says that He will not have sacrifice? What does that mean. Obviously the entire Law is predicated on sacrifice. He came to offer Himself a sacrifice. So what is He saying? He will not accept mans own sacrifice (ones own works performed outside of faith) He will only have mercy on those who acknowledge their sin sickness.
“for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”
If their is a gospel formula for receiving salvation it has its foundation contained herein.
We must first acknowledge our sin, and believe in the mercy that Christ has offered us, through His coming to die on our behalf in order to make us well. Not having a righteousness of our own, but His righteousness imparted to us.
Jesus has then as God in this sense predestined those to hell, who cannot and will not acknowledge their sin.
So, is He here taking responsibility for their sinful condition?— these who will not acknowledge their condition? Or is He merely stating the fact that all who refuse to acknowledge their sin and refuse to believe in His payment for their sin are therefore predestined to God’s wrath.
18 He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
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