By Edward O’Hara Fri 7/24/2020 8:57 AM
If you aren’t sure what that means it is when you have two things you believe are both true that actually cancel each other out. They are mutually exclusive ideas. One may be true while the other is not. Or neither are true. But, they can not both be true.
Cognitive dissonance reigns supreme among the many and various denominations today. Their teachers practice it and are making sure it is practiced by their parishioners by teaching them the unbiblical notion that men are born with a sin nature they inherited from Adam. And in perfect cognitive dissonance form they have married it with the notion that men also have free will. Not only are these two beliefs mutually exclusive, the false sin nature doctrine is a belief in salvation by works. And when it comes to New Covenant soteriology, salvation by works is the leaven that leavens the whole lump.
I had a conversation with a man whose letters behind his name prove that he has had some sort of training in theology. It was obvious that he depends heavily on this training. Rather than the plain teaching of the Bible. And sadly, like most who call themselves Christian, because of this heavy influence he too practices the cognitive dissonance in believing that men have free will and are sinners by nature. I tried to explain to him that these are mutually exclusive beliefs because one cancels out the other. Because having a sin nature means that a man is governed by that nature making it impossible for man not to sin. And that free will means one is able to choose freely without coercion or force to do either good or bad as he chooses. And that this is what makes these mutually exclusive. But, like so many others he disregarded my exhortations by passing it off as coming from one who is a novice in the use of the word of God. He was sure that I just didn’t know enough to get it. I wondered if he really knew why he believes what he believes. And that what he has come to believe has choked the word that was sown making it unfruitful as Jesus said it would.
Sin nature or “necessity” doctrine as Augustine referred to it, was first codified to the Roman Catholic religion because they chose to believe Augustine’s teachings from the early 400’s ad. And by doing so have made him their “doctor of theology”. But, unlike so many denominations today according to Augustine’s doctrine free will is an impossibility. Having been lost through Adam’s transgression in the garden. Leaving salvation and damnation the choice of God, with men having no say in the matter. So even though Augustine was wrong about sin nature and free will he saw that any belief in free will mixed with sin nature is a dead end Biblically. Because it leaves a man in the unenviable position of being among those who “oppose themselves” that Paul spoke of in 2Tim.2:25,26. Tools of the devil being taken captive at his will.
This is why it is so strange when I read some men writing scathing article after scathing article about the Roman Catholic religion’s beliefs and practices, while actually continuing to believe all of her fundamental doctrines. Geoffrey Grider of nowtheendbegins, and he is not alone, is a perfect example of this. Stating that men have a sin nature they inherited from Adam. And are stained with the sin of Adam’s original sin from conception. But, break with Augustine in regard to men having free will. Not realizing they are practicing the insanity of cognitive dissonance in their theology. Making their theology equal to, and in some ways more than, the the proverbial “soup sandwich” that Augustine’s is. In this they show that they oppose themselves. Taken captive by the devil at his will as Paul said in 2Tim.2:25,26. Cognitive dissonance on display.
Some like Ray Comfort and Hal Lindsey even saying that “if men could keep the law perfectly then they would not have needed Jesus”. While at the same time saying that men can only be saved by grace through faith. As if grace is someone else’s works imputed to you for salvation. Showing that they neither know the true God or His gracious salvation by faith without works. These are just a couple of examples, of which there are too many. of this cognitive dissonance being practiced and preached by so many who call themselves Christian today.
The huge problem in statements like these is that they promote a belief that the Christian is saved by works. Even though they would protest to the contrary saying that it is by faith alone in Jesus that they are saved. But, when you pin them down by asking what it was that Jesus did that makes Him the unblemished lamb they admit that it is their belief in Jesus’ perfect law keeping that made Him the sinless sacrifice that saves them. Showing that a belief in sin nature leads to a belief in a false Jesus and a false atonement. A foregone conclusion once one has accepted the sin nature doctrine as truth. Because if God sent Jesus to keep the law perfectly in our place because we could not because of a sin nature, and perfect law keeping is His righteous standard required for one to be made acceptable to Him and therefore allowed into His kingdom, then they have believed it is because Jesus kept the law perfectly(works of the law) that we are saved through faith in Him. This is by definition a trust in salvation by works. But, Paul says a man is only made righteous by the faith of Christ. And not by works of the law in Gal.2:16,20.
Most who listen to and read what these and others like them teach agree completely with what they hear and read. Not discerning the hiss of the serpent in their message. Having been taught these false doctrines from day one of their experience in their new religion by people just like these who have accepted these lies for truth. And clinging to them instead of Jesus with all their might. Not knowing that these men are teaching the false doctrines that the apostles warned the church about saying they are those who teach “a different gospel” which is “anathema”. And that these “deny the doctrine of Christ”. Paul adding “This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come… Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith.” 2Tim.3:1-13. This is the reason for the great falling away, the apostasy in 2Thes.2:3, that Paul said would come.
But, how is it that so many are fooled by these false teachers? It is because of the power of the spirit of antichrist. The false teaching that Paul said will reign during the great tribulation that is to come which makes way for the strong delusion that deceives all who would not come to a love for the truth. They squabble about non essentials like if and when the “rapture” will happen, is the earth round and flat like a plate or a sphere, while at the same time expressing complete agreement with the false teachings that deny the essentials of the faith once delivered to the saints. Even rejecting that Jesus came in the same flesh all men have. Of whom John spoke of saying “they hath not God” in 2John1:7-11. But, have instead believed the spirit of antichrist John spoke of in 1John4:1-3. Those who follow these false teachers and those like them are doing so because they have been deceived as their teachers have. They have believed the spirit of antichrist and not the Jesus Christ of the Bible who speaks through the Holy Spirit to lead and guide the true believer in all truth.
There will be no reprieve for these who have believed the spirit of antichrist when they stand before God if they do not repent from their deception because God has shown them the error in their ways. God has brought people into their lives so they can learn not to blaspheme. And instead of turning from their false doctrines, their idols, to serve the living and true God as Paul instructs in 1Thes.1:9. They have instead given the true God the proverbial “finger”. And kept instead the doctrines of their false teachers and their false gods. James says those who teach these false doctrines will be judged more harshly than those who have been deceived by them. He said “My brethren, be not many masters(teachers), knowing that we shall receive the greater condemnation.”
In this James should be heeded by these men who claim to know and teach Biblical doctrine. A more serious admonition is not given regarding those who teach. Which is why we must accept Paul’s admonition to examine ourselves at all times to see whether what we have believed is part of the faith once delivered to the saints. To ensure that what we are passing on to others is what God said in His word. And not the false doctrines of the Roman Catholic harlot. Or any other for that matter. Who believes and teaches the lies of Satan who perverts everything God instructs men in for eternal life. Beginning with Eve who he deceived by telling her “Ye shall not surely die”. And ending with those who at the end of the millennium will be deceived after having spent time in that kingdom where Jesus rules and reigns.
We must not believe the perversion of Paul’s gospel that Satan brings by mixing works with faith for eternal life. It doesn’t matter who we say we believe does the works. If we believe works were necessary for our salvation we have not believed Paul’s gospel. But, have believed a different gospel. One that Paul says is anathema in Gal.1:8,9.
Men are not condemned by, nor are they saved by, works. No matter who they think has done them. Condemnation by works and salvation by works is not God’s message on “how to be saved”. In fact, it is antithetical to Biblical salvation. Paul proving this by teaching “God was in Christ not imputing their trespasses to them” in 2Cor.5:19. Therefore the “Roman Road” that is used to lead an unbeliever to faith in Jesus has been perverted by these who have believed these false doctrines. Because when understood properly Rom.6:23 is Paul’s paraphrase of Ez.18:20 and John3:16 respectively. Because in this verse Paul is showing the Israelite that only when one is under the law is it true that “the soul that sinneth it shall die”. Which he goes on to explain more fully in Rom.7. And that when they turn from the law to faith in Jesus “the gift of God is eternal life”.
And Rom.3:23 is Paul’s paraphrase of Jesus’ teaching in John16:9 where Jesus said plainly that the sin of the world that the Holy Spirit is reproving it of is “They believe not on me”. Therefore, what a man must recognize to be saved then is that he does not know Jesus. Not that he is not good enough for God to accept him into His kingdom because he is evil by nature by inheritance. Because Jesus said it is knowing Him that is eternal life in John17:3. Which is why Paul said to be saved a man must confess Jesus as Lord and believe that He has raised from the dead. Therefore works have nothing to do with our need for salvation or how we are saved.
Don’t believe these charlatans. Believe the word of God.
Will you turn from idols to serve the true and living God? Will you trust in Jesus as Lord and His resurrection? Paul says if you will then you can be saved. You can have eternal life. If you will, then please pray with me.
Dear Jesus, thank you for joining with me in my death so that I could join with you in your eternal life. By being made a child of God by the birth of the spirit. By being born again. Thank you for leading me now by the Holy Spirit in my new life in Christ. And for purging me of the false doctrines of antichrist. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
If you prayed this prayer with me will you leave a comment in the section below telling us that you have so that we can rejoice with you? And God bless you in your new life in Christ. Study the Bible. Believe what it plainly says in context. And share your love for Christ and His love for you and all mankind with all who will listen.
See you there or in the air!
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