Skip links

The Defense and Confirmation of the Gospel

Phil. 1:7  Even as it is right for me to think this concerning you all because you have me in your heart, since both in my bonds and in the defense and confirmation of the gospel you are all fellow partakers with me of grace.

The defense of the gospel is related, on the negative side, to the perverting and distorting heresies, like Judaism, dealt with in Galatians, and Gnosticism, dealt with in Colossians. Judaism was perverting the gospel, whereas Gnosticism and Greek philosophy were distorting it. Paul defended the gospel against all heretical perversion and distortion. Consider his experience with Peter at Antioch. Although Peter had received the vision concerning the Gentiles in Acts 10, he withdrew from eating with the Gentile believers in Antioch. In this matter, Peter did not stand for the truth of the gospel. On the contrary, he perverted this truth. Therefore, Paul withstood Peter to his face and rebuked him. In defending the gospel against perversion and distortion, Paul was unique. According to the record of the New Testament, he was the one who stood the strongest against anything that perverted and distorted the gospel. This was the reason for much of his sufferings. However, the grace he enjoyed surpassed these sufferings.

The confirmation of the gospel is related, on the positive side, to all the revelations of God’s mysteries concerning Christ and the church as unveiled in Paul’s Epistles. In the writings of Paul, the two great mysteries–Christ as the mystery of God and the church as the mystery of Christ—are unveiled. No other apostle unveiled these mysteries as adequately as Paul did. To be sure, his teaching and preaching were a confirmation of the gospel and of God’s economy.

In contrast to Paul, who was absolute for the defense and confirmation of the gospel, many preachers of the gospel today are wishy-washy in this regard. They seem to have no backbone. Instead of dealing with the major points of God’s economy, certain of these preachers simply deliver sugar- coated messages to make others happy. On the one hand, we must defend the gospel against teachings which are perverting and distorting it; on the other hand, we must confirm it by pointing out the goal of the gospel of God.

Share Post to A Friend

Leave a comment