February 10, 2008

Personal Thoughts & Scriptural Mandates for Your Consideration

Dear Guests:

An abbreviated version of what follows was originally intended to appear in the thread under my article, Evaluation of “Crossless” Theology, Part 3. It was directed to Matthew and an anonymous individual who goes by the handle FG Me. As I expanded my thoughts I decided to post them as a home page article. Those thoughts are here for your consideration.

Antonio da Rosa and various other advocates of the “Crossless” gospel are bit players in the over-all doctrinal controversy. For that matter, so am I.

The danger men like Antonio, Matthew, Alvin, Jeremy Myers and Jim Johnson pose is primarily to lurkers in the blogosphere. Those who are unsuspecting and unsure of the egregious errors that these men are propagating are most at risk.

It is primarily the teaching of Zane Hodges and Bob Wilkin, through the Grace Evangelical Society, that poses the greatest threat to Bible believing Christians, churches and the lost. These men are well known and have venues from which to spread the “Crossless” gospel.

Thankfully as the most disconcerting beliefs of Hodges and Wilkin are revealed and understood there is a shrinking number of opportunities being given the GES to spread their false interpretation of the Gospel. I’ve made no secret of my hope and prayer that the GES will one day soon cease to exist. This would effectively end its threat to the body of Christ expect for the relatively small cell of followers who have unfortunately been deceived.

Antonio happens to be the most vocal and vitriolic apologist for the teaching of Hodges, Wilkin and the GES. His beliefs rest on the far edge of the already extreme GES faction of the Free Grace community.

IMO, Antonio’s greatest contribution in the debate is his demonstrating just how deep the radical extremes are one can wind up in who has been deceived by and succumbs to the teaching of the “Crossless” gospel. His views serve as a warning and reminder as to what can happen theologically to anyone who adopts the teachings of Hodges and Wilkin on the Gospel.

This does not make me happy. It is a sad day when men like Antonio, who have been embraced the teachings of Zane Hodges’ “Crossless” gospel, drift even further into more radical doctrinal and practical errors than the men who mentored them in those directions may hold to themselves. Former GES staff member Jeremy Myers is another case in point.

Pastor Tom Stegall titled his series, The Tragedy of the “Crossless” Gospel. This is an appropriate theme for what we see in the theological positions and direction of Antonio da Rosa. A truly tragic scene!

There are Scriptural principles at work here.

Romans 16:17-18 & 2 Thess. 3:6, 14-15 are mandated courses of action for every believer, without exception, when faced with the teaching and advocates of major doctrinal error, which the “Crossless” gospel, without any question, is.

Through the Inspiration of the Holy Spirit, the Apostle Paul admonished believers: Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offenses contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them. For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple,” (Romans 16:17-18).

The Bible says, “Come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord” (2 Cor. 6:17). “From such turn away” (2 Tim. 3:5). “Withdraw yourselves” (2 Thess. 3:6). “And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them” (Eph. 5:11). “Abhor that which is evil; cleave to that which is good” (Rom. 12:9). “Prove all things; hold fast that which good” (1 Thess. 5:21).

Some of the above refer to unbelievers; I do, however, consider Antonio (and the others I have referred to in this article) born again, but erring and disobedient brothers.

My desire at In Defense of the Gospel is to offer a forum where contributors and I provide resources for the concerned readers who might be susceptible to the errors of John MacArthur's Lordship Salvation as well as Zane Hodges’ “Crossless” gospel.

I encourage all guests to search the Archive and Label sections of my blog. There are many articles and resources that will better equip believers across a broad spectrum of Evangelical Christianity to recognize, refute and warn others of the inherent dangers of Lordship Salvation and the “Crossless” gospel.


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