Part 21 of 22

Paul’s Warning to Teach No Other Doctrine”

The Apostle Paul instructs his son in “the faith,” Timothy, to “charge some that they teach no other doctrine” (1Tim 1:3). The “no other doctrine” here is obviously that doctrine which Paul had taught Timothy and the churches that Paul had founded in his many missionary journeys.

In I Timothy Paul closes his epistle by saying: If any man teach otherwise, and consent not to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ... from such withdraw thyself.” (1Tim. 6:3). Paul’s message and words are those that he received directly from the ascended “Lord Jesus Christ.” Galatians 1:11-12 But I certify you…the gospel (good news) which was preached of me is not after man. 12 For Ireceived itby the revelation of (from) Jesus Christ.

In these passages the Apostle Paul emphasizes the importance of faithfulness to that heaven-sent Christ-given message committed to him “by revelation” from the ascended Lord. Paul says his gospel message was “promised before the ages began but only made knownin due time... through preaching which is committed unto me (Paul) ...” (Titus 1:2, 3).

The Law of Moses, the Sermon on the Mount, the so-called “great commission,” according to Jesus (Matt 15:24, 10:5-6), and Pentecost, according to Peter, all belong to Israel (Acts 2:22, 3:12). These have all been confused Paul’s new message of “the gospel of the grace of God,” which is God’s program for “the body of Christ” under “the dispensation of the grace of God” (Eph 3:2). Ever since Paul’s day religious leaders have sought to substitute for and/or add other messages to that which was committed to Paul by the risen Lord. This is what has confused and divided the Church; this is the root of the powerlessness and apostasy (falling away) we see among the church at large today.

Let’s acknowledge the confused thinking in the church today. The church at large today mostly holds to the Ten Commandments and the Sermon on the Mount, which Jesus spoke to and for Israel only (Matt 15:24). These do not apply to “the body of Christ, the church.” The teachings of modernism promote the earthly ministry of Jesus of Nazareth , the Man of Galilee, following his footsteps, social betterment, political reform, etc. So many so-called Christians are so taken up with the social gospel; so eager to help make this fallen hopeless world a better place to live in, that they did not even notice, realize, or believe that the apostates have denied the very fundamentals of “the faith.”

The apostates are inexcusable but the “new evangelicalism” of our day is even more dangerous. Its message is subtle and tickles men’s ears. Perhaps the new evangelicalism’s greatest danger lies in the fact that while claiming to be “conservative,” they do not hold to the doctrines of “the faith” that Jesus gave “the body of Christ” through Paul. The neo-evangelicals minimize the importance of the fundamentals of “the faith” that Paul introduced, and the danger of apostatizing from them. I believe Paul’s words to Timothy: “Charge some that they teach no other doctrine,” are more urgently needed in our day than they were in his.

I’ve listed fourteen points below to provide a summary of what I personally believe to be an adequate summary of “The Doctrines of the Faith” for the age of Grace, today. Each of these points is supportable by “rightly dividing word of God” (2 Tim 2:15), as Christ delivered it to the Apostle Paul, “the Apostle to the Gentiles,” for “the body of Christ.” Again, we must always be vigilant and careful to not confuse that which concerns and applies to Israel under “the Law” or Abraham under “promise” with that which concerns and applies to “the body of Christ” under “the dispensation of the grace of God” (Eph 3:2).

1. I believe that the Bible, as sacred Scripture, in its original documents, is the verbally inspired Word of God. The Greek text of 2 Timothy 3:16 says: pasa graphe theopneustos — “all scripture [is] God-breathed.” The term scripture (graphe) denotes that which is written. The truth of the doctrine of the verbal inspiration of the Scriptures is abundantly claimed throughout the sacred canon; i.e., God instructed the prophet Jeremiah, “Behold, I have put my words in your mouth” (Jeremiah 1:9). Paul wrote: “I received of the Lord that which I also delivered unto you” (1 Corinthians 11:23). The Scriptures are exalted as the Word of God some 175 times in Psalm 119 alone. In his classic work, Theopneustia—The Plenary Inspiration of the Holy Scriptures, L. Glaussen, professor of systematic theology, Oratoire, Geneva, defined inspiration as “that inexplicable power which the Divine Spirit put forth of old on the authors of holy Scripture, in order to their guidance even in the employment of the words they used, and to preserve them alike from all error and from all omission” (p. 34). The Bible is complete, inerrant, and our final authority (2 Tim. 3:16-17; 2 Pet. 1:19-21; 1 Cor. 2:13).

2. I believe in the doctrine of the Trinity. There is one God, eternally existing in the three persons of “the Godhead” (Rom 1:20, Col 2:9): The Father, The Son and The Holy Spirit (Gen 3:22; Deut. 6:4; Gal. 1:1; Heb. 1:8; Acts 5:3-4, Rom 8:9-10, 2 Cor 13:14).

3. I believe God is the only absolute Sovereign and that in His sovereignty He works in the lives of men to bring them to union with Him (Ps. 103:19; Rom. 8:28-39; 2 Cor. 1:21, Philippians 2:13).

4. I believe that each member of the human race is fallen, sinful and spiritually dead and that, therefore, man is totally incapable of saving himself (Rom. 3:23; Eph. 2:1, 8-9).

5. I believe that the Lord Jesus Christ was perfectly sinless in that He never committed any act of sin. Though He as Jesus of Nazareth “was (humanly) born of a (human) woman” (Gal 4:4) and “was tempted in all ways like as we are” (Heb 4:15 KJV), He was “yet without sinning” (Heb 4:15 AMP). Thus, He was qualified to die as He did, as our sinless sin substitute, making complete payment for our sins. He arose from the dead on the third day and He is eternally alive today. He is willing and able to save, redeem and justify anyone who will trust Him as their own personal Savior (1 Cor. 15:1-4; 2 Cor. 5:21; John 3:16; 6:47).

6. I believe that every believer immediately, upon believing, comes receives the deposit of the one “eternal life,” which is in the “One Lord” and he is therefore safe and secure for all eternity. When a Christian sins, his fellowship with the Lord is interrupted, but the love of God and his sonship cannot be lost. A Christian may then incur God the Father’s chastisement as training, but he cannot lose his salvation (1John 5:11-12, John 5:24; 6:37; 1 John 1:3, 9; Heb. 12:6; 1 Cor. 11:32).

7. I believe every child of God is sealed and indwelled by God’s Holy Spirit in the person of “the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus” (Rom 8:2a). As believers, it is our privilege and duty to walk and live under the influence of the indwelling “Spirit of life in Christ Jesus” by yielding our self-soul being to Him so our lives can be directed and filled with the power and fruit of Christ’s resurrection life (1Cor 3:17; Rom 8:2a, 9; Eph. 1:13, 5:18; Gal. 5:16-23).

8. I believe that during the period covered by the Book of Acts, the Holy Spirit gave various sign-gifts such as prophecy, miraculous gifts of tongues for speaking in foreign existing languages without effort of study, and the laying on of hands for miraculous healings (1 Cor 12:1-21). “The Jews require a sign” (1Cor 1:22a). These gifts, being temporary, have “ceased” after Israel made a final rejection of the gospel (Acts 28:28). Evidence of the sign-gifts ceasing may be seen as it was foretold of the Apostle Paul and then noted in the progression of his own life experience (Acts 2:1-11; 1 Cor. 13:8-13).

9. I believe that God physically heals today in answer to prayer according to His will. I do not believe He bestows on any believer(s) today the power to perform miraculous healings as His intermediaries, as He did during the time of the Book of Acts. I also recognize that there may be times when God has a special purpose for afflictions and sufferings and that it may not always be His will to heal. These present physical, sin-laden, bodies are yet corruptible and will ultimately die, unless they are “changed” at the rapture of “the body of Christ.” (1 John 5:14-15; 2 Cor. 12:8-10, Rom 8:17).

10. I believe that at the moment of salvation, each believer is baptized or immersed by the Holy Spirit into “one body” (Eph 4:5), which is Christ spiritual body. I believe that this “one baptism” is the only sort of baptism that is applicable under God’s present program of “the dispensation (or administration) of the grace of God” This one baptism makes all believers partakers of “the riches of the glory of His (Christ’s) inheritance that is in the saints.” (1 Cor. 12:13; Eph. 1:4:5, 14; 1 Cor. 1:13-17).

11. I believe that Christ will come to the earth again. First He will come in the clouds before the prophesied day of wrath, the Tribulation, to receive “the Church, which is His Body” to Himself. Then, after the seven-year Tribulation period, He will physically return to earth to establish His Millennial Kingdom on earth as was promised to Israel (Acts 1:11; 1 Thess. 1:10; 4:13-18; 5:9; Matt. 25:31-34; Rev. 19:11-16; 20:4,6).

12. I believe that Satan, the Devil, is a real person who was created angelic and perfect but became “the author of sin.” Both he and his angels are destined to eternal judgment in the Lake of Fire , for whom the Lake of Fire was created (1John 3:8; Isa. 14:12-15; Ezek. 28:15; Matt. 25:41).

13. I believe that all men will be bodily resurrected from the dead. The believers will be resurrected to everlasting glory at Christ’s appearing in the clouds. The unbelieving, the “dead in Christ,” will later be resurrected to stand at the Great White Throne judgment; these are destined to eternally “perish” (apollymi, fully destroyed) in the Lake of Fire (1 Thes 4:15-17; John 5:28-29; 1 Cor. 15:22-24; Rev. 20:6-16, John 3:16b).

14. I believe it is every believer’s privilege and duty to serve as Christ’s “ambassadors” so long as we remain on earth under a special commission, the ministry of “reconciliation,” which the Lord Jesus Christ gave to the Apostle Paul for all grace believers in the present day of “the grace of God” (1 Tim. 1:15-16; 2 Cor. 5:18-21; Eph. 3:8-9; 6:19-20).

These above are what I consider core beliefs that apply to “the church, which is His body” today, as derived from our Apostle, Paul.

The child of God has no need to make any worldly organizational alliances or affiliations in order to realize his salvation or to advance God’s eternal plan toward the culmination of the ages as described in the Bible or to secure his own salvation. I believe the life of God in Christ, as the eternal “Spirit of life in Christ Jesus” (Rom 8:2a), which indwells the members of “the body of Christ,” is all-sufficient to guide the believer and meet every need arising in the believers lives both on earth and in heaven.

Those who stand for the simple truth of the “grace gospel” for today will be opposed, marginalized and slandered, but we ought not to become disheartened, rather we need to “continue” in “the faith.” Cornelius Stam wrote the following article describing Paul’s response to what he had faced as he then faced his own execution, having been opposed throughout his God-appointed ministry.

“These were among the last words of the great Apostle Paul, written in view of his approaching martyrdom, to Timothy, his beloved son in the faith. “Evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse...but continue thou” (2 Tim. 3:13, 14).

Circumstances, outwardly, were anything but encouraging. It seemed that the last days of the dispensation of grace were indeed at hand. The apostle had borne many “persecutions” and “afflictions” and now “suffered trouble, as an evil doer, even unto bonds”. There were those who, like Jannes and Jambres, had “resisted the truth” (Verse 8). “Alexander the coppersmith” had done Paul “much evil” and had “greatly withstood his words” (4:14, 15). “Evil men and seducers” had risen on every hand and were to “wax worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived” (2Tim.3:13).

There was even defection among his own brethren in the faith, so that now, from his Roman prison, he had to report: “All they which are in Asia have turned away from me...Demas hath forsaken me...only Luke is with me” (2Tim.1:15; 4:10,11).

And what, now, is his parting advice to young Timothy? Does he say: “Perhaps I have been too intense? My methods have made many enemies. I advise you to be more diplomatic and tolerant than I have been”. Hardly, for the records show Paul to have been of all men most tactful and considerate. His sufferings were not the result of a contentious spirit, but of his faithfulness in proclaiming that message which so embarrasses and enrages “our adversary, the devil”, that message which is God’s gracious response to man’s need and His answer to Satan’s slander -- “the gospel of the grace of God”.

Thus it is that the Apostle urges Timothy: “Continue not strong”. He well knew that in this sin-cursed world the only hope for the individual is to be found in God’s offer of salvation through faith in the redemption wrought by Christ at Calvary”           - by Cornelius Stam