Class Notes: 10/27/2021

The book of Romans part 9 Doctrine of the Gospel

We are in a verse-by-verse study of the book of Romans and got through verse 1 with the expanded translation: "Paul, a slave of Christ Jesus, called an apostle, through having been appointed because of the Gospel from God."

In the verse we found 3 doctrines to explore: the doctrine of adjustment to God's justice that Paul had done, the doctrine of apostle that was Paul's office, and the doctrine of the Gospel that was Paul's message.

We are presently in a study of the doctrine of the Gospel and before we stopped last time we noted that no works can be added to faith because the only issue in salvation is Christ and what He did. Salvation is not contingent on what we do. Jesus Christ alone on the cross was judged for all of mankind's sins and that is the exclusive basis for God's propitiation.

Last time we noted that some say repentance from sin is a prerequisite to salvation. Repentance means a change of mind and indicates what happens when you understand the Gospel through the ministry of the Holy Spirit. Repentance is the ministry of the Holy Spirit in common and efficacious grace it is impossible for God to accept any repentance before salvation because it is human works.

The Bible only emphasizes believe adds nothing to it. You can't be saved by water baptism, by renouncing sins, by joining a church, by psychological gimmicks like raising your hand and walking an aisle. These cannot save you because they are things you are doing.

When anything is added to faith in Jesus Christ for salvation, that is salvation by works so there is no salvation.

This brings us to the enemy of the Gospel. 2Cor 4:3-4; "But even if our Gospel has been veiled, it is veiled from those who are perishing, in whose case the god of this world (Satan) has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, that they might not see the light of the Gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the exact image of God."

Note that it's in the thinking that you believe. It is Jesus Christ who is the issue in salvation. The issue is not your sins because He was judged for all sins. The issue is not something you do because Christ finished all or the work for salvation on the cross, as indicated when He said, "tetelestai"

(John 19:30) the perfect passive of Greek verb "tetelestai" means finished in the past with the result that it stands finished forever.

Satan blinds the thinking of the unbeliever. Unbelievers are impeded when false issues are brought up when witnessing. Satan uses believers with false doctrine in their thinking to confuse the unbeliever in an attempt to prevent their salvation.

God's Word used several descriptive adjectives to describe the Gospel.

Rom 1:16-17 KJV; it is called the "gospel of Christ". Though "of Christ" is not in the original manuscript, the fact that someone added it indicates that they understood that the Gospel refers to one Person only, our Lord Jesus Christ, and His work on the cross.

Eph 6:15; describes the "gospel of peace." This emphasizes the doctrine of reconciliation, whereby Jesus Christ removed the barrier between God and man. We step over that barrier by personal faith in Jesus Christ.

Rev 14:6; declares the "eternal Gospel," which emphasizes the Gospel as the only information by which we can acquire eternal life.

Matt 24:14; states, "the Gospel of the kingdom," emphasizing the fact that the unconditional covenants to Israel can only be fulfilled to those Jews who personally believe in Jesus Christ.

2 Tim 2:8; has the phrase "my Gospel;" 2Cor 4:3-4; says "our Gospel," these passages emphasize the fact that every believer possesses the Gospel and has a personal responsibility to not only understand it but to present it to others when the Holy Spirit provides the opportunity to witness for Jesus Christ. 1Pet 3:15;

1Tim 1:11 calls it the "glorious Gospel," emphasizing the fact that only the Gospel can save the unbeliever.

1Cor 1:17, the apostle Paul makes a very dogmatic statement, when he says, "For Christ did not send me to baptize but to preach the Gospel, not in cleverness of speech, in order that the cross of Christ should not be made void."

In the early church prior to the completion of the Canon of Scripture, water baptism was a legitimate way to teach the concept of the baptism of the Holy Spirit. That was the only purpose of water baptism. It was designed to teach the importance of a new dispensation.

In the New Testament water is used to describe identification. In God's Word, water baptism was first used during the dispensation of God's great power experiment of the Hypostatic Union. It was never described as being used in any Old Testament dispensation.

When John the Baptizer practiced water baptism, the water represented the kingdom in association with the Person of Jesus Christ. When they believed in Jesus as Messiah, they were put under the water, being identified with Jesus, and they were lifted up out of the water into the air, representing eternal life in association with Jesus the Messiah.

When Jesus was baptized, the water represented God's' unique plan for Him in the dispensation of the Hypostatic Union. So under the water, Jesus was identified with the purpose for the great power experiment of the Hypostatic Union.

Coming up out of the water represented the resurrection, meaning that the purpose of God's great power experiment of the dispensation of the Hypostatic Union would be extended to the resurrection of Jesus' humanity.

To teach the baptism of the Holy Spirit to believers in the first century of the Church Age, water represented retroactive positional truth. Meaning that when anyone believes in Christ he is retroactively identified with Jesus in His substitutionary spiritual death on the cross.

This symbolically represents rejection of all human good. Coming up out of the water represented the new positional truth of being identified with Jesus in His new life where He is presently seated in heaven at the right hand of the Father.

Water baptism was a ritual. All ritual is based on metaphors that teach principle and application. Once the Canon of scripture was completed the only ritual that remained was communion service with its metaphors of the bread and the cup that are designed for us to recall Jesus Christ and the work He did for us on the cross.

Water baptism was divisive among believers even during the pre-Canon period of the Church Age, 30AD-96AD because even then as they do now arrogant people used water baptism as a basis for their arrogance.

With the completion of the Canon of Scripture, it is totally unnecessary to use the ritual of water baptism to teach the baptism of the Holy Spirit because it is redundant and can be used for the insidious deception of salvation by works.

We see this today when uninformed arrogant people insist that the ritual of water baptism is necessary for salvation and spirituality. This is why Paul made it very clear in this verse that his ministry was not a ministry of baptism.

A lot of clever evangelists inadvertently obscure the cross. The issue of the Gospel is the cross of Christ, not sin or clever psychological thinking.

The emphasis of the Gospel is not baptism, it is not sin. It is exclusively Jesus Christ being judged for our sins as our substitute and dying a substitutional spiritual death on the cross.

The issue in salvation is "what do you think of Christ?" not how many sins you will give up, or what commitment you will make or how will you change your life from now on.

The Gospel is exclusively about Jesus Christ and what He did on the cross. The Gospel is free. 2Cor 11:7-8; "Or did I commit a sin in humbling myself that you might be exalted (no I didn't), because I preached the Gospel to you without charge? I robbed other churches, taking wages from them to serve you."

Money must never be an issue in the communication of the Gospel. Paul did not go to the Corinth and take up an offering. He came to preach the Gospel, making no issue out of money.

Paul went to Corinth as a missionary, he did not take up an offering. An evangelist who takes up an offering is taking money mostly from unbelievers, and he is also making an issue out of money. The only issue in the Gospel is "believe on the Lord Jesus Christ."

The Gospel is to be given free of charge. It must not be related to giving. Giving is an individual matter for every believer-priest, dependent exclusively upon their attitude toward God and their understanding of worship.

Giving is a mental attitude. What you give or if you give at all is strictly your own business. Giving is a legitimate function for the believer, but it should never be involved in the presentation of the Gospel to an unbeliever.

In saying that he "robbed" other churches, Paul was being sarcastic, but he was also explaining that he was a missionary. That means that other churches supported him with money so he could pay for the expenses that were necessary for him to travel around to present the Gospel without cost or obligation.

Eventually Paul did take up offerings from the believers in Corinth to help support their fellow believers who were being oppressed by the Jewish government in Jerusalem. 1Cor 16:1-4;

God always turns the curse into a blessing. It is the believer's job to learn the doctrine in order to understand the when where and how and why of what God wants them to do.

In this case God was using the oppression from the Jewish government to get the Jewish believers to move away from there so they wouldn't be killed when the Romans destroyed Jerusalem in 70AD.

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