June 25, 2010

Archival Series: Grace Evangelical Society’s Reductionist Affirmation of Belief

Dear Friends of IDOTG:

Until August 2005 the official Grace Evangelical Society (GES)
Affirmation of Beliefs on the doctrine of salvation was stated as follows (*abbreviated form):

Jesus Christ, God incarnate, paid the full penalty for man’s sin when He died on the cross of Calvary. Any person who, in simple faith, trusts in the risen Christ as his or her only hope of heaven, refusing to trust in anything else, receives the gift of eternal life, which once granted, can never be lost. 

The sole condition for receiving eternal salvation from hell is faith (trust) in the Lord Jesus Christ, Who died a substitutionary death on the cross for man's sin and rose from the dead (John 3:16-18; 6:47; Acts 16:31).

 That previous statement was revised. Following is the current version of the GES Affirmation of Belief.
The sole condition for receiving everlasting life is faith alone in the Lord Jesus Christ, who died a substitutionary death on the cross for man’s sin and rose bodily from the dead (John 3:16-18; 6:47; Acts 16:31).

Faith is the conviction that something is true. To believe in Jesus (‘he who believes in Me has everlasting life’) is to be convinced that He guarantees everlasting life to all who simply believe in Him for it (John 4:14; 5:24; 6:47 ; 11:26 ; 1 Tim 1:16 ).
In the former Affirmation, “Jesus Christ” is identified as deity by use of the term, “God incarnate.” This reference to the Lord’s deity has been deleted from the current Affirmation.

Furthermore, the previous statement included, “
any person who, in simple faith, trusts in the risen Christ... .” That simple statement summarizes Christ’s deity, incarnation, death and resurrection. As it appeared then, the statement was perfectly consistent with Romans 10:9-10 in regards to trust (believing) in the resurrected Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. The statement also includes the word “trust.”

The revisions to the GES Affirmation were made with purpose. In the new version, the relative clause is parenthetical. When the GES says, “
faith alone in the Lord Jesus Christ who died...” they do NOT mean that the lost person needs to understand and believe Jesus died and rose again. They simply mean a lost man must believe in the name “Jesus” as the Giver of eternal life.

GES spells out their contents of belief in very next sentence, “
To believe in Jesus...is to be convinced that He guarantees everlasting life to all who simply believe in Him for it.” This is not a paraphrase or roundabout way of stating their position. This is literally the GES definition of the only necessary content of faith for the reception of eternal life. According to the GES, understanding and/or believing the cross, His resurrection and deity are not necessary for salvation. These are the doctrinal truths that Zane Hodges (1932-2008) referred to as “excess baggage” in an encounter with the unsaved.

You can note the phrase “
faith…in the risen Christ” has been eliminated from the current affirmation. Because Bob Wilkin and GES view the Lord’s resurrection as “excess baggage,” they will no longer use descriptive phrases such as that. You will also notice also that the word “trusts” has been removed.

The GES continues to drift far from a balanced biblical position on the Gospel. The revisions of the GES
Affirmation of Belief on salvation affirms and verifies Bob Wilkin personally and, on behalf of GES, officially adopted the late Zane Hodges’s legacy, which was his unbiblical and reductionist interpretation of the content of saving faith, commonly known as the Crossless Gospel.


First published on November 28, 2008 with an extensive discussion thread that followed.

Site Publisher’s Addendum:
An example of the troubling teachings of the Grace Evangelical Society (GES) is articulated by one of its members and a passionate follower of Zane Hodges’s Crossless, Promise-ONLY gospel. I speak of Antonio da Rosa who articulates some of the most extreme reductionist heresy in any Christian circles today. He reiterates and reinforces GES’s reductionist assault on the Gospel, i.e. the content of saving faith. For example see- Believing the Gospel, “May Indeed Frustrate God’s Grace?” Antonio da Rosa also stated, The Mormon Jesus and the Evangelical Jesus are one and the same.”

*There is a third paragraph that is not germane to our discussion. You may visit the GES web site to view that third paragraph. It is my policy to avoid linking guest to sites that propagate heretical views on major doctrines. Because of its Crossless/Deityless interpretation of the Gospel, GES is such a site.

This article is a revised version of a thread comment first posted by Greg Schliesmann.


  1. Every time I think about this I get chills. The boldness of their stiff necks is shocking even after I've become well familiar with the fact.


  2. The real shock comes when you read what the children/followers of Zane Hodges come to believe such as I've shared from the likes of Antonio da Rosa in the addendum.

    The GES Crossless people, are hardened into this reductionism. The only reaction we can have to them is the biblical one, which is, "A man that is an heretic after the first and second admonition reject," (Titus 3:10).


  3. Lou-

    I forgot about the Mormon Jesus comment.

    It is blatantly wrong. The Mormon Jesus is one in purpose with the Father but is NOT one in essence with Him, and therefore is not deity. Any Jesus that is not one in essence with God the Father is NOT God in essence himself. Therefore, even though the Mormon Jesus died on the cross, as one in purpose with the Father that he should do so, this Jesus is NOT the saving Jesus who is deity, sharing the same essence as God the Father.

    The Mormon doctrine fits the condemnation given by Jesus in Revelation 22:18-19 where anyone who adds to the prophecies in the book will have the plagues of the book added to him, and anyone who takes away from the prophecies will have his part taken out of the book of life and the city of God. Mormons have no part in the book of life, or the holy city because their Jesus cannot save.

    They preach a false christ who cannot provide salvation, and has no intention of doing so because he is a demon who brings a doctrine of demons.

    Antonio had better do his homework on this because when he says the Mormon Jesus is the same as the evangelical Jesus, he is preaching heresy of the first order.


  4. I forgot to say why the Mormon Jesus fits the condemnation of Rev 22:18-19. The Mormon Jesus was "revealed" subsequent to Revelation by many centuries, giving additional prophecies through those golden plates, or whatever they are, and commanded the Book of Mormon to be written in addition to the cannon of Scripture.

    Prophecy is added. "Scripture" is added. Christ is removed by redefinition and replaced with a false christ who cannot (and will not) give eternal life, provide the righteousness necessary to enter the holy city of God, and cause one to have one's name written in the book of life.

    Please repent, Antonio. Your position is heresy.


  5. Jan:

    You wrote, “Antonio…is preaching heresy of the first order…. Please repent, Antonio. Your position is heresy.

    He has resisted all efforts to help him be recovered from this heresy, which is the natural result of his adopting Zane Hodges’s reductionist assault on the Gospel. Regrettably he has caused a few others to fall into the trap of the Crossless gospel. Persons such as Rose and Michelle who were convinced by da Rosa to accept and now defend the GES Crossless gospel heresy as a legitimate interpretation of the content of saving faith.

    This is why the efforts of any GES Crossless gospel advocates must be exposed and that advocate(s) marked so that he/she will be avoided (Rom. 16:17).


  6. Lou,

    You should invite those GES guys to post here so we will be able to learn more about this heresy.


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  8. Richard:

    I used to let them post here, but stopped it for several reasons:

    1) I do not want to put some at risk who may be immature in the faith and/or susceptible to adopting error. Above I noted a Rose and Michele who are tragic examples of those who were deceived and now defend the GES heresy.

    2) The behavior of many of the GES people is atrocious. Vitriol, plagiarism, refusal to answer questions, sock puppet stunts, criminal libel and defamation, deliberate manipulation of private e-mail or discussions for public use to demonize their opponents, etc, etc, etc. Antonio da Rosa, chief among them.

    My thinking is that if we present truth, when egregious errors such as the GES Crossless heresy comes along it will be recognized as error.

    I use this blog primarily in defense of the Gospel by exposing false interpretations of the Gospel such as Lordship Salvation and the GES Crossless gospel. I primarily use the writing of the advocates of these views to expose what they believe and how they arrive at their conclusions. This way there is no credibility for the shrill cries (which come anyway) for misrepresentation or a straw man argument.

    BTW, there are scores of articles on both LS an the CG at this blog. Go to the LABELS and search for some of these.

    Thanks for asking,