The Word and Spirit movement has two sides of errors to deal
On one side, those who are so aware of the law of God, yet
do not understand the message of salvation properly. A variety of traditional
and mainline denominations represent salvation as if Christians are barely
saved, as though a Christian is a forgiven sinner in the present tense.
On the other side are those who say they are so in the
Spirit that they need not obey standards, hold doctrines or submit to any kind
of constraints. Apparently, in the Spirit, they are free to do anything. All
sins are forgiven so almost all things become permissible, as though Christians
may call themselves righteous regardless of what they do.
Both these extremes are wrong, and both present dangers and
lead people into error. On one side, a person may sin, be aware of it, but say
it is because he is a sinner and console himself that God will overlook it. On
the other side, a person may sin, be ware of it, but say that he is justified
and the devil is just trying to condemn him with feelings of guilt. Both these
views are extreme errors and are very troubling.
SINNERS SAVED BY GRACE ERROR
One famous Presbyterian minister wrote, “Christians have
nothing to be smug about; we are not righteous people trying to correct the
unrighteous. As one preacher said, “Evangelism is just one beggar telling
another beggar where to find bread.” The chief difference between the believer
and the unbeliever is forgiveness. The only thing that qualifies a person to be
a minister in the name of Christ is that that person has experienced
forgiveness and wants to tell of it to others.”
This quote is wrong doctrine on so many levels. First,
actual Christians should not be in pride, so they should not be “smug”. Second,
the Bible teaches very clearly that Christians should judge. Judgment should be
right, and it is good. Third, Christianity is all about correction, both
against the world and within the Church.
Fourth, true Christianity elevates Christians to be sons of
God, to be seated in heavenly places, so Christian evangelism is not being done
by “beggars”. Rather, to be Christian is to be righteous, to be good, to be elevated.
The difference between the believer and the unbeliever is vast and stark.
Christ does not keep Christians in a beggarly condition, as
salvation is of power to make the sinners righteous.
So then, Christians were sinners, but being saved, they are
actually saved, not in the thing any more that was sending them to hell. As the
old holiness preachers said, salvation is about saving people from doing the things
that were damnable, not merely saving them from hell. Jesus came to save people
from sin and from sinning.
FREE GRACE ERROR
There are those who teach in order to be saved, you don’t
have to do anything. Apparently, no works are required at all. Since actually
believing, or expending calories in praying aloud, or doing anything at all such
as repenting of your former life is allegedly a “work”, they say that such
things ought not be done.
Even though salvation is about submitting to the rule of
Christ, there are those who deny that Jesus must be made one’s Lord.
“That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine
heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart
man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.” (Romans 10:9, 10).
So clearly “grace” is not without some reciprocal action on
our part. Laying hold of salvation is actually required, it doesn’t just fall
on us by chance, or by just thinking that you agree to it.
If one should confess the “Lord Jesus” then that means recognising
his mastership and rule in your life.
As for Christian living, are we to obey God’s rules, or are
we just “free in the Spirit” to do whatever we or allegedly He leads us to.
(Allegedly He because it seems that in many cases people who live this way are
really living after their own desires or listening to an evil spirit.)
The problem of no-effort and lack of sanctification has
arisen in charismatic circles, and has robbed Christians of all kinds of blessings.
Instead of growing up spiritually, this lying spirit will teach things like “you
don’t have to tithe” and so on, which seems to accord with the satanic
doctrine, “do as thou wilt”.
Being a son of God does not mean being free from obedience.
When the Bible spoke of being free from the works of the law, it meant works to
earn salvation. It did not mean that we should abandon standards or morality as
Christians. On the contrary, the Bible states that we should “abound to every
good work” (2 Cor. 9:8). Again, “That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all
pleasing, being fruitful in every good work” (Col. 1:10). And again, that God “Comfort
your hearts, and stablish you
in every good word and work.”
(2 Thess. 2:17).
Proper sanctification is the process of actual continuous
obedience to the Gospel, which is to say, that sanctification leads to
LOW COMMITMENT CHRISTIANITY ERROR
Those who really wish to make the cost of following Christ cheap, to have no apparently onerous requirements, are falling into the error of being lukewarm. Lukewarm Christianity has taken over much of Evangelicalism, and it is a form of Christianity that has minimum requirements, little prayer and little Bible reading, and probably non-committal Church attendance.
Satan has been very accommodating. The COVID-19 lockdowns
were a perfect excuse for people to quit Church. Yet the Bible stated, “Not forsaking the assembling of
ourselves together, as the manner of some is” (Heb.
10:25a). And again, “And Jesus said unto him, No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back,
is fit for the kingdom of God.” (Luke 9:62).
One Evangelical minister from Wales stated, “If you do not
desire to be holy I do not see that you have any right to think that you are a
Christian. It is a part of God’s design that we be prepared unto good works.”
The whole of Christianity is about the works we do because of