THE SUFFICIENT GOSPEL
O what amazing words of grace are in the gospel found,
suited to every sinner’s case who knows the joyful sound.
Poor, sinful, thirsty, fainting souls are freely welcome here.
Salvation, like a river, rolls abundant, free, and clear.
It is the Gospel that saves. It is the Gospel that gives hope. It is the Gospel we must obey. With John we have no greater joy than to hear that others are walking in the truth of the Gospel (2 John 4). Paul was overjoyed by the faith and love demonstrated by the church in Thessalonians (1 Thessalonians 1). However, when Paul’s mind turned to the Christians in Galatia (Iconium, Derbe, Lystra, etc), he saw they were deserting the Gospel of Christ for the gospel of man.
The short letter of Galatians is written so that we might learn to stand in the Gospel of Christ and add nothing to it. To add to or take away from the Gospel of Christ is to destroy it. John alluded to Deuteronomy 4:2 “I warn everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: if anyone adds to them, God will add to him the plagues described in this book, and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away his share in the tree of life and in the holy city, which are described in this book” (Revelation 22:18). Let us now examine the sufficiency of the Gospel for God’s people and purposes.
I. THE SUBJECT OF THE GOSPEL–Galatians 1:1-5.
A. The Gospel is a reality–1:1
1. Jesus spoke to Paul directly as evidence–Acts 9, 22, 26
2. Jesus’ resurrection was part of the faith shared by the Galatians
B. The Gospel is center of Christian life–1:2-3
1. Partnership in the Gospel (brothers with me)
2. The brotherhood at large (congregations of Galatia)
3. Blessed of God (Grace and Peace)
C. The Gospel is God’s gift demonstrating His love–1:4
1. Jesus’ sacrifice was of His own accord.
2. Jesus’ sacrifice was for our deliverance.
3. Jesus’ sacrifice was God’s will.
D. The Gospel is the message which demands God be glorified.
1. John 12:32.
2. God’s glory is everlasting, not like the fading glory of the transient.
3. God’s glory should be our will–Amen.
II. THE SINGULARITY OF THE GOSPEL–Galatians 1:6-10.
A. There is no other true Gospel–1:6-7.
1. Jesus is the truth we must know–John 8:31-32
2. Jesus is the name with authority to save–Acts 4:11-12
3. Jesus delivered one faith for his people–Jude 3
4. Jesus Gospel alone saves–Romans 1:16
B. There is no hope in a false Gospel–1:8-10
1. Destruction waits for those who would pervert the message of God
2. Those who please men at the expense of Christ do not truly serve
3. 2 Peter 2
4. 1 John 4:1
5. Revelation 2:15-16
III. THE SOURCE OF THE GOSPEL–Galatians 1:11-24.
A. The true Gospel originates with Christ–Galatians 1:11.
1. True Gospel is something of certainty.
2. True Gospel is worthy of preaching.
3. True Gospel is not man’s fanciful idea.
B. The true Gospel opposes the ways of man–Galatians 1:12-14.
1. True Gospel comes by revelation of God not speculation of man.
2. True Gospel is in opposition to our former life.
3. True Gospel requires sacrifice of pride.
C. The true Gospel operates in Christians–Galatians 1:15-24.
1. The Gospel calls men–Romans 10:17.
2. The Gospel first works in the individual,
3. and then allows the individual to work–Romans 1:16.
4. The Gospel causes men to glorify as lights in the world.
Christopher Edwards graduated from Yale in 1975. He enrolled at Berkeley for a master’s degree. While there he was tricked into a weekend retreat of Sun Myung Moon’s Unification Church. That “fun” weekend turned into 7 1/2 months of brainwashing. Christopher was then totally dependent upon his new Messiah. He described himself as “willing to die or even kill to restore the world under the absolute rule of Reverend Moon”. In 1976 his father and trained professionals kidnapped Christopher. Only after a year of “deprogramming” and therapy was he able to overcome what he now calls “months of madness”. He wrote a book titled Crazy for God. How many have been duped by false religion.
The American Banking Association sponsored a 2 week training program on detecting counterfeit bills. Never once did the tellers see a counterfeit bill. For those two weeks they examined only real currency. They became so familiar with the true that they could not possibly accept the false. Let us know God, God’s Word, and God’s church so that we can never be fooled.
ACCEPTED BY THE TRUTH OF THE GOSPEL
“He also told this parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and treated others with contempt: Two men went up into the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee, standing by himself, prayed thus: God I thank thee that I am not like other men, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week; I give tithes of all that I get. But that tax collector, standing far off, would not even lift up his eyes to Heaven, but beat his breast, saying, God, be merciful to me a sinner!” I tell you this man went down to his house justified, rather than the other. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but the one who humbles himself will be exalted.–Luke 18:9-14
In whom should we trust for our salvation? Should we pride ourselves on things done and things not done? Should we not rather trust in God’s faithful mercy bestowed upon His children?
I. Examples of acceptance–Galatians 2:1-14
A. Paul accepted by the Gospel–Galatians 1:18-24
B. Titus accepted by the Gospel–Galatians 2:1-5
1. Titus served as an example of living by the Gospel rather than Law.
2. What about Timothy (Acts 16:1-5)? He was circumcised as a
matter of expediency for the spread of the Gospel.
3. Titus was not circumcised because of the principle of salvation by
4. Truth of the Gospel must never be endangered by opinions or scruples.
1. Be all things to all men in order to gain some 1 Corinthians 9:19-23
2. Be set for the defense of the Gospel
C. Converts accepted by the Gospel–Galatians 2:6-10
1. Paul mainly preached to the Gentiles
2. Peter mainly preached to the Jews
3. God saved both.
D. Gentiles accepted by the Gospel–Galatians 2:11-14.
1. Cephas (Not called “Peter” because he was acting like a Jew (?).
2. Oppose those who oppose the Gospel–Galatians 6:1
3. Opposition to the truth of the Gospel results in condemnation
for those rebelling.
4. Cephas led a hypocritical segregation when faced with social pressures. He should have known better–Acts 10.
5. They “walked out of step with the truth of Gospel”
1. See that the Gospel regulates our lives.
2. See that the Gospel is not a license to sin.
3. See that the gospel is not to be amended.
4. 1 Timothy 5:20-21
II. Acceptance through faith in the truth of the Gospel–Galatians 2:15-21.
A. Neither Jews or Gentiles were right under the Law.
1. Ephesians 2
2. Acts 13:38-39, 43.
B. The impossibility of justification by works was evident to all who attempted it.
1. Romans 8:3
2. Romans 9:30-31, 39
C. The Law itself demonstrated the fact that we must hope on mercy through
1. 1 John 5:39-46.
2. 2 Timothy 3:15-16
3. Romans 7
D. The obeying the Gospel is the key.
1. Colossians 2:10-14
2. Colossians 3:1
3. Romans 6:16-18.
What a small thing it seemed to eat the forbidden fruit. However, rejection was the result with flaming swords refusing re-entry. Only the Gospel could restore the relationship between God and man.