The Other Jesus:
The Gospel Perverted
For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus... 2 Corinthians 11:4. I
marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace
of Christ unto another gospel... and would pervert the gospel of Christ,
The warning from God is quite clear: false prophets abound who preach another
Jesus, another gospel, a perverted gospel which is no gospel at all. [Mat
We greatly underestimate the enemy of our souls. We can fully expect him
to have a false plan of Salvation to present to Bible believers; it will
be an exact duplicate of the real thing, yet miss the truth just enough
to miss Biblical Salvation. The enemy will not deny the blood atonement
nor the verbal inspiration of the Scriptures, yet he will not place the
blood atonement in its proper place. Of course, his plan would have to
be so close to the truth that it would look exactly like the truth, thereby
avoiding detection by even the 'best scholars.' [From this preacher's experience,
only those who have been caught in the deception are readily able to understand
the perverted gospel's devastating closeness to the truth yet the lost
condition of those in it.]
Though the perverted gospel claims the blood atonement, it avoids it ever
so slightly just enough to miss eternal life. Can we expect anything less
from the best deceiver ever created, the father of lies?
In these next few pages, we will attempt to look past the apparent perfect
message, which makes the perversion so appealing, so that we might see
its underlying perversion.
Many who read this will say, "You are splitting hairs." Certainly! The
father of lies is an expert at splitting hairs and misusing words. Did
he not try to misuse wordsþScriptureþwith the Lord Jesus? We
can be assured that he will do no less to those today who believe God's
Word; what better place to misuse words than in the plan of Salvation?
[Mat 4:6] One of the primary responsibilities of a teacher of God's Word
is to divide asunder the soul and spirit, and.. the joints and marrow with
the word of God. [Heb 4:12]
This perverted plan probably has come into wide acceptance since the '40's.
[Undoubtedly, it is deeply rooted in the "Christian" Mystics of old who
longed for some kind of a mystical experience with God.] It is centered
around various basic instructions:
"You must ask Jesus into your heart to be saved - You must
ask Jesus to save you - If you will pray and turn your life over to God,
you will be saved - You must pray and trust the Lord to take you to heaven
- You must pray and trust the Lord to come into your heart to save you
- Receive God (Christ) into your heart, life, &c."
There are abundant variations on this idea, none of which emphasize - most
avoid completely - the absolute necessity of trusting in the substitutionary
death and payment of Christ for our sins.
As we will see, all of Scripture points to this "Ask Jesus into your heart"
plan of salvation as being the perverted plan of the other Jesus of Paul's
warning. [Gal 1:6-9; 2 Cor 11:1-4, 13-15]
[Try to fit the idea of "Ask Jesus into your heart" into the law of the
atoning sacrifice in the Old Testament. Were the people commanded to ask
the bullock to come into their hearts or to turn their lives over to the
bullock? [Lev 1:4] The only thing that will work according to the Old Testament
sacrificial law is trust in the Sinless Sacrifice to pay the sin debt in
the place of the repentant sinner. All of the Lord's statements, e.g.,
John 3, must be viewed in the light of the Old Testament sacrificial law.]
["Implicit in this justification is the substitutionary sacrifice for sin
sincerely offered as noted in Ps 51:16-19. The righteousness of God's heirs
of salvation is the righteousness of the Messiah attributed to them by
God through faith in the redemptive work of Messiah in which God declares
them righteous only because of the grace provided through that redemptive
work." TWOT, Moody Press, pg. 755. This could not be any clearer. Any other
emphasis is the devil's lie.]
The perverted gospel seemingly has all of the right words, feelings and
works. [2 Cor 4:3-6] Its counterfeit is so perfect that only a supernatural
work of the Holy Spirit can separate it from the truth. The true plan of
Salvation was best described by C.H. Spurgeon:
"The gospel is that Jesus Christ suffered in the place of all sinners who
trust Him as their Saviour; that He endured what they ought to have endured
and made atonement to God for all the sins that they would ever commit;
and if you thus trust Him, you are saved. The simple act of relying upon
Jesus as your Substitute and Saviour puts away your guilt and sin forever."
He continues, "...Pride must come down, self- righteousness must die, and
the sinner must glorify the grace of God by knowing that he has no merit
of his own, or he cannot be saved. ...Say, `Lord, I deserve to die; I deserve
to perish; I deserve to be destroyed. I will have no cavils with Thee about
my sentence, for how can a worm dispute with the Almighty? Who am I that
I should reply against my Maker?'"
Observe: First, we must realize we are sinners without hope. Second,
we must recognize that we can do nothing at all to avoid the wages of our
sin. Third, we must understand that Christ paid all the penalty for our
sin through His atoning sacrifice, enduring what we should endure. Fourth,
the sinner must rely upon Jesus as his Substitute for his sins and as his
Saviour, confessing this verbally. Fifth, this simple act puts away the
guilt of sin forever. Anything less than this is not Biblical Salvation.
If these basic things are not made clear to the sinner before he makes
a profession, then it is impossible for him to be saved. [Eph 1:12-14]
"When you have taken that position, rely upon the freeness of divine grace.
Grasp, as with a death-clutch, this great fact and say, 'Lord, Thou dost
forgive sinners for Thine own name's sake. Thou canst not find anything
in us that is good, anything that can move Thee to pity! But, oh, by Thy
mercy and Thy love, let men see what a gracious God thou art! For Thy great
name's sake have mercy upon us, and save us!'"
"You can plead that Jesus said, `Him that cometh to me, I will in no wise
cast out.' [Jn 6:37] And that he has bidden his servants say, `Whosoever
shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved;"
"...Let the wicked forsake his ways, and the unrighteous man his thoughts;
and let him return unto the Lord, and He will have mercy upon him; and
to our God for He will abundantly pardon."
"I cast aside all my former confidences, and all my boastings, and come
as the worst sinner must come, for I feel that, in some respects, I am
the worst sinner who ever came to thee. I come as an utterly lost, undone,
bankrupt sinner, and I look to the atoning sacrifice of Jesus for all I
need." [Metropolitan Tabernacle Pulpit, Vol. 53, Sermon "Rule of Grace,"
pp 500-502, Pilgrim Publications, Pasadena TX]
The sinner is saved because he has trusted in what Christ has already done;
he has trusted in Christ to pay his debt for him, to pay what he should
have paid: "To endure what he ought to have endured." Then the Spirit of
Christ comes to dwell in the heart of the believer. One is not saved because
he asks the Spirit of Christ to come to dwell in him. If Salvation were
the result of the Spirit of Christ coming to dwell in a person, there would
have been no need of the atoning sacrifice of Christ.
Notice the order in Ephesians 1:13, 14, In whom ye also trusted, after
that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom
also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,
Which is the earnest of our inheritance..
It matters not how much the sinner wept, the degree of conviction, his
sincerity or the intensity of the emotional experience involved, if the
substitutionary payment of Christ's atoning work was not made understandably
clear. How could he trust in something he didn't know about?
We fail to recognize the tenacity of our soul's enemy. Luke 9 records a
man who brought his son to Jesus for help, and right at the feet of Christ,
the devil made a final effort for the boy. (As he was yet coming, the devil
threw him down, and tare him, v. 42.) The Enemy has not changed! Many with
the world's best intentions have been offered something else by the devil
as a last ditch effort to keep them from trusting in the atoning sacrifice
We have heard pastors preach "Trust Christ as your Saviour," yet we see
their congregations go out and spread the "gospel" as "You must ask Jesus
into your heart to be saved." Where is the Salvation in this? The simplicity
that is in Christ is "You must trust Christ to pay the penalty of your
sin." The other Jesus is: "You must trust Jesus to come into your heart."
Look at the two completely different things for which Christ is being trusted:
one, you are trusting Him to pay the penalty for your sin; the other, you
are trusting Him to come into your heart. There is a clear distinction
between the two.
The argument arises, "Brother Need, you are arguing over semantics. All
the best scholars agree that the two mean the same." Being without Scriptural
foundation, their argument is heretical because there is not one contextual
Scripture which will support Salvation as a result of trusting Christ to
come into one's heart. A text without a context is a pretext. [2 Pe 3:16]
Obviously, the dividing line between the two plans is only a hair's width,
maybe only a word or two. But let us be reminded that our enemy specializes
in splitting hairs and misusing words. His specialty is making a verse
say something that it does not actually say.
In a futile attempt to justify the perverted gospel, there are many verses
offered by the devil which are commonly wrested from their context: Behold
I stand at the door and knock... [Rev 3:20] Notice the context is speaking
to a church with no reference at all to Salvation; therefore, any effort
to make it say more than it does is similar to Satan's efforts against
the Lord. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved...
shows the result of trusting Christ as one's Substitute and Saviour. Any
effort to make it stand alone not only does great harm to the context,
but removes Salvation from the passage. [Rom 10:9-14] But as many as received
Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that
believe on his name... [Jn 1:12] Within the context of the gospel, this
is receiving His redemptive work as payment for our sins in our stead.
To use it as "receiving Him into our hearts" changes the plan of Salvation
and makes Salvation a result of Jesus coming into one's hearts, which it
is not. The Spirit of Christ coming into the believer's heart is a result
John 3:16 is probably one of the greatest verses in Scripture. But again,
the devil is no fool as he uses even this precious verse to present his
another Jesus. How? By changing the meaning of a word. The meanings of
words change with their usage. Again, the dividing line is only a hair,
a word or two, but enough to miss Salvation.
I have read how new editions of the dictionary are assembled. The editors
have "listening stations" all over the country, and whenthe usage of a
word changes enough, the dictionary is updated. An example of this would
be II Thessalonians 2:7, where letteth means "hinder," but today, this
word means "to permit." The Scripture gives us a fixed language where the
meanings of words like letteth, believe and many others, do not change.
However, the meanings of these same words have changed in our usage over
the years, and is reflected in our dictionaries. Our enemy then uses these
changes to subtly present his another Jesus.
Note the word believe: The usage of this word today indicates, "to believe
something as a historical fact." James 2:19 points out that the devils
believe there is a God - they know the fact that He exists. A good secular
humanist education is required to know more than the devils do: There is
no God. Scripture teaches that even the devils will bear witness to who
He is and that they will confess and praise Him, but He will not accept
their praise. Therefore, just because someone acknowledges, confesses or
praises God and Christ does not mean he loves God or is saved. [Mat 8:29;
Ma 1:23, 24; 3:11; 5:7; Lu 8:28; Ac 16:16, 17; 19:5]
Consequently, if a person claims for Salvation, "I believe Christ died,
was buried and rose again for sinners and I now confess that with my mouth,"
he could have nothing more than the devils' belief. The Bible definition
of the word "believe" must be trust or reliance. Thus Paul's statement,
Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved, Acts 16:31, would
mean to place one's complete trust or reliance in His payment for his sins,
"To endure what we ought to endure." Anything less is not Biblical Salvation.
Matthew 7:21-23 strikes at the heart of the matter. First, Not everyone
that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven...
The sinner might have cried out, "Lord, save me," or, "Lord, I trust you
to come into my heart and save me," but he did not have a clear understanding
of the substitutionary, redemptive work of Christ. Or maybe he did not
have the Holy Spirit's light to enable him to understand the substitutionary
death and payment for his sins. [1 Cor 2:10-16; 2 Cor 4:3-6. God's judgement
will be according to His one standard of truth, Rom 2.] Whatever is prayed
must be firmly grounded in understanding and receiving what Christ has
done for the sinner, or they shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.
An objection to our argument for the necessity of a clear understanding
of Christ's work might be: "I didn't understand about Christ's redemptive
work when I made my profession, but I do now, so I'm OK." Observe: Ephesians
1:13, In whom ye also trusted after...ye heard the word of truth, the gospel
of your salvation; Romans 10:14, How then shall they call on Him in whom
they have not believed (trusted)? and how shall they believe in Him of
whom they have not heard?; So then faith cometh by hearing... Clearly,
according to God's word, trust and relianceþthus Salvationþcan
only come after hearing and understanding the truth of Christ's atoning
Another objection might be "Well, how about children? The atoning work
of Christ for the sinner and the sinner's trust in His atoning work is
too difficult for them to understand; therefore, we must place it down
on their level by telling them they must have Jesus in their hearts."
It is an absurd devil's lie to say that the Lord has provided two plans
of Salvation: one for children, one for adults. Romans 2 clearly tells
us that all judgement is according to God's one standard of truth. Furthermore,
when we lower the gospel to the level of natural understanding, we depart
from the truth and exclude the Spirit of God from regeneration. Is not
one of the reasons for standing against modern perversions of the Scripture
their reduction to the level of the natural man? In an honest evaluation,
rather than placing the true plan of redemption through Christ's atoning
work on a child's level, we see the false child's plan ask Jesus into your
heart, &c.þbrought to an adult level.
Note that we are not speaking against reaching children for the Lord. Obviously,
our future hope lies in reaching young people for the Kingdom's sake and
teaching them to observe all the Lord's commands. We must do all we can
to reach children for Christ, [Lk 18:6] but for us to say there is a way
for anyone to come to Christ other than through His substitutionary death
corrupts ..And him that cometh to me, I will in no wise cast out. Everlasting
life comes only through trusting Christ as our Substitute and Saviour.
We cannot add or detract anything, for His revealed plan is complete. [Jn
6:40; Rev 22:19]
Consider this example. A little girl about six years old heard that she
had to have Jesus in her heart in order to be saved. She expressed her
desire to her mother and followed her mother's instructions to ask Jesus
into her heart. Her mother then assured her that she was saved.
Only by violently wresting Scriptures beyond all recognition from their
obvious contexts can we believe that there is any Scriptural redemption
in the actions of the little girl. [Wrested, we might add, to the destruction
of all involved, Ps 56:5; 2 Pe 3:16.] We cannot find one hint in contextual
Scripture that this "gospel" will save anyone. Certainly, the believer
has Christ in him, the hope of glory, but only as the result of trusting
Christ as his sin-bearer or substitute. [Col 1:27]
To tell a child, as this mother did, that she can be saved by "asking Jesus
into her heart" presents to her the other Jesus. Although the other Jesus
undoubtedly did come into the girl's heart with good feelings and works,
he is not the One who died for sinners. We receive that Spirit of Christ
by trusting in His payment for our sins, not by asking Him into our hearts.
Jesus Christ lives in the believer only through faith in His atoning work
not through faith in a prayer. [Ac 20:29; 2 Cor 13:5]
Have we not been warned that he passes himself off as an apostle of Christ
and a minister of righteousness? He may even stand in the pulpit preaching
righteousness, but, regardless of his righteous appearance, the total of
Scripture exposes him for what he is: a false teacher. [2 Pe 2:1-3]
The master deceiver
Remember, the enemy is a MASTER deceiver. A deceiver imitates and/or misuses
truth; therefore, Satan counterfeits every spiritual gift of Romans 12
and Galatians 5. As a deceiver, his specialty is not obvious works of the
flesh; rather, it is "truth" misused to serve his purpose. He truthfully
said to Eve, You shall not surely die, for the fruit was not poison. But
separation from God, sin and death entered into the world as a result of
the deception (1 Tim 2).
What would the enemy do to prevent one from seeing and/or acting on his
need of the substitutionary death of Christ? Would he not give the necessary
feelings and good works to prevent one from coming to Christ as his Substitute
and Saviour? Would he not give "conviction of sin" if that "feeling" would
draw a person away from Christ and to something else? He is the deceiver
and an expert at using peoples' emotions. [Rev 12:9. The devil is a spirit,
specializing in working with man's spirit against God's spirit.] Also,
one's refusal to believe that he can be deceived will give the enemy greater
ability to draw them away from the truth. [2 Tim 3:13; Ja 1:22]
The little girl, unless the Spirit intervenes, will always look back and
say, "I'm saved because I did what they told me: I asked Jesus into my
heart." She may go on to understand the necessity of trusting Christ, but
until she gives up what she was told as a six year old and realizes that
she is a lost sinner on her way to hell who must come to Christ to pay
for her sins, she will not enter into the Kingdom of God. In other words,
we cannot "grow" into Salvation; it is a one time event of being born again
preceded by the presentation and understanding of Christ's atoning work
Our responsibility is to emphasize, as simply as possible, the atoning
work of Christ and the sinner's need to repent and trust in that work for
his sin payment. It is the Spirit's responsibility to make it understandable.
Anything less than this is another Jesus.
To tell a person he will be saved by "Asking God to forgive his sins and
asking Jesus into his heart, then trusting Christ to do that" avoids His
atoning work and gives a false assurance of Salvation which will take a
supernatural working of the Holy Spirit to remove.
For our own benefit, we need to be reminded that the Holy Spirit MUST convict
of sin and open the understanding to the Gospel. Far too often, we try
to do the Holy Spirit's work; it is HIS job to convict of sin and draw
the sinner to Christ. If the Spirit's drawing is not present, in Christ's
words, there can be no salvation. [Jn 6:37-45; 15:16; 16:8]
Back to Matt. 7:21 ...but he that doeth the will of my Father which is
in heaven. Here we have two points. First, 2 Peter 3:9, ...not God's will
that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. Luke 13:3-5
also covers this: Repentanceþa turning around. But a turning from
what? It is a turning from the sin for which a person is already condemned,
the refusal to trust Christ as his Substitute and Saviour. [Jn 3:18; 6:39]
Therefore, God's primary will is that all men should turn from their own
ways of salvation to God's way of Salvation. Furthermore, the Father's
will is defined in John 6:39, 40: that we believe, i.e. trust in His completed
work, on him and, in doing so, have everlasting life.
There is a way that seemeth right unto man, but the end thereof are the
ways of death. It seems right to be saved by "Asking Christ to save you,"
but the end of that way is death to the sinner if he has not understood
and trusted in the atoning work of Christ. The sinner must turn from his
way to a complete dependence in what Christ has done in his placeþthe
just for the unjustþand accept His payment in the sinners place.
The context of Luke 13:1-5 indicates that the ones to whom the Lord spoke
when He said, I tell you Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise
perish, were religious hypocrites who displayed correct outer actions yet
refused to turn from their way to God's way. [Lk 12:56. Hodge gives us
an extremely good insight on these religious leaders; they had total assuranceþfalseþof
heaven because they were circumcised decedents of Abraham. Charles Hodge,
ROMANS, Geneva Series, Banner of Truth Trust, pg. 63. Therefore, what the
Lord said here were "fighting words" to His hearers.] In other words, the
Lord's strong message to repent here is given to the outwardly moral person.
Matthew 7:21, ...will of my Father... John 6:29, Jesus answered and said
unto them, this is the work of God, that ye believe (trust) on him whom
he hath sent. [Compare this with Rev 20:12; I Jn 3:23.] The only work that
will please God for heaven is trusting Christ as our Substitute and Saviour.
Thus both the will and the work of the Father for Salvation is the same,
viz. trusting, receiving what Christ has done for us.
Matthew 7:21-33 tells of a person who had called upon the name of the Lord
(Lord, Lord) without instruction in, and understanding of, the atoning
work of Christ for him, and of his necessity of trusting in that work alone
for the payment of his sin.
...Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied
in Thy name... Many have preached great sermons and won many to the Lord;
however, a person's preaching of the Gospel or leading multitudes to the
Lord does not mean he is born again.
...and in Thy name cast out devils, and in Thy name done many wonderful
works. Many have worked bus routes, sung in church choirs, taught Sunday
School classes, entered into great missionary endeavors, accomplished tremendous
social programs and even held important church offices. But the Lord forbids
looking back on those wonderful endeavors with the thought, "I wouldn't
be doing all of these things if I weren't saved." [Rev 19:10 ..for the
testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy. Telling others about Christ
or "prophecy" does not mean we are saved.]
Notice what the Lord will say to them, ...I never knew you: depart from
me, ye that work iniquity... The Lord tells these "Christian workers" that
they are workers of iniquity because they had never trusted in the atoning
work of Christ.
The devil is smart deceiver! He will not come as a roaring lion to Bible
believers who profess to love God; he will come as a purring kitten, as
a minister of righteousness, as a minister of Christ. He will not come
with a blatant departure from the truth; he will come in crabways along
side the truth with something that looks, sounds and feels like the truth.
He will attempt to present his message as being the same as the truth,
but, when exposed to the light of God's total word, it is clearly not the
Both Paul and Peter warn of heresies, i.e. an erroneous opinion which is
a substitute for the truth, that might accompany the truth within the church.
[1 Cor 11:19; 2 Pet 2:1-3] They warn of a quiet subverting of the Gospel
from the atoning work of Christ by something that approximates the truth.
[For an excellent treatment of this, see "Barnes' Notes, JamesþJude,"
p 236, Baker Book House, Grand Rapids, MI] Heresy is not an obvious departure
from sound doctrine. Predominately, heresy is something passed offþand
accepted along with the truth. It is among you, from within the fellowship
of believers, not from without. Privily speaks of the very "subtle" manner
of introduction. Our enemy is an expert at bringing in his subtle departure
from the truth completely unnoticed until he has control. [See Vine's Dictionary
Treatment of Heresy, p 574, and Privily, p 887, Riverside Book and Bible
House, Iowa Falls, IA]
If a person feels he is saved because he has "Asked Jesus to come into
his heart and life and has trusted Him to do that (&c.)," yet at the
time was not properly instructed in the necessity of trusting Christ as
his Substitute and Saviour, then there is a problem. There can be no Salvation
apart from the clear instruction of what Christ has done for the sinner
and his trust in Him to take the sinner's place.
As we have presented the preceding message, we have seen the Spirit work
to bring questions in the hearts of many individuals. Our purpose is not
to create confusion; our purpose is most certainly to shake those things
which can be shaken. [Heb 12:27] Here is what we suggest for those who
feel shaken over the preceding message: 1) they should put aside everything
they have been taught, 2) they should lay aside all confidences which they
might receive from their good works, 3) they should lay aside all assurance
that others might try to give them, e.g. "If anyone is saved, you are."
Then they should completely read the Book of John at least once with a
burning desire for the Lord to speak to them regardless of what they believe
or want to believe. Furthermore, they should ask God to take away anything
they might be depending on other than Christ. They should ask God to reveal
their true conditions to themselves either by taking away all false assurance
or by giving a firm passage for assurance. All of these suggestions are
based upon 2 Corinthians 4:3-6 and Philippians 3:15 claiming the work and
light of the Holy Spirit to reveal the truth about one's Salvation.
Through prayer and searching of the Word, many times we have seen God move,
opening the individual's understanding of the work of Christ for him, and
the sinner fleeing to Christ as his Substitute and Saviour.
No doubt the NUMBER ONE lie among Bible-believing people today is: "You
must ask Jesus into your heart to be saved and trust him to do that (come
into your heart)," &c. But look at what this is saying! "You are saved
because you asked Jesus into your heart." There is no Scriptural support
for this false plan of salvation which is devastating to the cause of Christ;
it places the emphasis upon a prayer that is said and what the sinner can
do rather than upon what Christ has done.
An objection might be: "I don't see any difference." Okay, why not change
the message to something that reflects the person's placing his trust in
the finished work of Christ's substitutionary payment in the sinner's place?
Then the objection might be, "But not everyone is able to under- stand
that message." If we accept this argument, we say we must reduce the Gospel
to the level of the natural man, removing from it the work of the Holy
What has happened to the plain, simple and clear plan of salvation as preached
by past saints of God? "...The simple act of relying upon Jesus as your
Substitute and Saviour puts away your guilt and sin forever... (CHS)" It
cannot be said any better.
It is not an act of praying, but it is an act of faith. There will be none
in heaven because they prayed and turned their lives over to God or because
they asked the Lord to save them, &c. We will be there only because
of what Christ did for us and our simple faith, verbalized when we prayed,
in His work. A lost person's growth into this faithþ"I didn't understand
back then, but I do now"þis no more possible than is evolution. The
Scripture teaches a new creation, not an evolution of the old. The enemy,
a master deceiver, knows and uses our weak points. [Gen 3:1; Jn 8:44]
We pray this little booklet has been a help for you. If God has used this
to speak to your heart, let us encourage you to take the proper action
in this most important of all matters. First, one must realize he is a
sinner without hope. Second, he must recognize that he can do nothing at
all to avoid the wages of that sin. Third, Christ paid it all through His
atoning sacrifice, enduring what we should endure. Fourth, the sinner must
rely upon Jesus as his Substitute for his sins and as his Saviour, confessing
this verbally. Fifth, this simple act puts away all guilt of sin forever.
This action of the heart is verbalized when one prays and puts his complete
trust in the Lord Jesus Christ to pay the penalty for his sins.
We have found that the deception dealt with herein is so well entrenched
today that a oneþtime confrontation against this false doctrine has
very little effect upon it. It took a consistent confrontation over a period
of many months before the Holy Spirit was able to start exposing this lie
with His truth at Linden Baptist Church. When He started moving, we saw
over 50% of our church members saved. His Word is a hammer, and the stronger
the grip of false doctrine, the more it must be hammered at and chipped
away a little at a time. The first time this rock is struck there may not
even be a chip, but it will break if we do not grow weary.
Hardness & Hostility
A man who represented Accelerated Christian Education in our area once
told me in the midst of an intense discussion about the plan of salvation
presented in ACE's material: "All the best scholars agree that the terms
are the same--Ask Jesus into your heart and trust Christ as your substitute."
He went on to say that if what we were saying was correct then he was lost.
That ended the conversation, for it was then obvious he was not defending
God's Word; rather, he was defending a false profession.
We confronted a missionary who worked with a printing ministry in the South
over the false plan of Salvation used in their materials. After a lengthy,
heated discussion, he said that he had asked Jesus into his heart here
in our church many years ago, and if that did not save him, then he was
We have found that those who become the most `hostile' over what we are
saying are more often than not unsaved themselves. They are defending their
own false profession of faith as surely as a man defends a city. Normally,
their defense is not Scriptural, and if they admit that what is presented
herein is true, they must admit that what they have is false. On the other
hand, those who have trusted Christ rejoice over the message contained
Not one time in Scripture is there even a hint that one can be saved by
asking Jesus into his heart, nor will we find instruction to turn our lives
over to Him for Salvation; it is a false plan of salvation being used by
the devil to draw multitudes down the broad road to destruction.
The man from ACE said, "Boy, you sure are narrow!" when I would not consider
any argument except Scripture. Yes! I am; furthermore, the Lord was very
narrow, calling all others thieves and robbers. [Jn 10]
A Personal testimony
This truth presented herein is largely overlooked in our day; therefore,
I realize many who read this will not understand what we are trying to
say. But, obviously, the risk is far too great to dismiss this lightly.
Though I am apprehensive about mentioning personal experience (the Spirit
deals with individuals as individuals), I think it would be useful to mention
that this little booklet is written from personal experience. This preacher
was "deceived" by this other gospel for many years. Whereas there are "other
gospels" which are just as dangerous as the one presented herein, this
one appears to be the most prevalent today. Our prayer is that the Holy
Spirit might see fit to use this little booklet to perform the same work
in others which he did in this preacher's life at 11:30 A.M., Oct. 29,
1977. Please do not attempt to compare experiences, for our only comparison
must be with the Word of God. The Lord deals with unique individuals, and
calls each to Himself in His unique way within the bounds of His Word.
When I got out of the Service in 1965, I worked construction during the
day and took some evening Bible College courses. Our church had a large
bus ministry, and the head of the bus ministry talked me into driving a
bus, then into taking a bus route. The Lord allowed a successful bus route,
so successful in fact, that when he left I was asked to take over the ministry.
While I was there, the Lord dealt with my heart about salvation.
I had gone forward as a nine-year old child. I am certain I went through
all the proper religious motions because I was baptized at that time. As
I got older, I could remember nothing about it, and the message I kept
hearing was, "If you can't remember asking Jesus into your heart, then
you aren't saved." I could not remember; therefore, one evening, in deep
emotional distress, I went to one of my instructors saying, "I need to
talk to you." He took me into his office and I told him, "I'm not saved."
"Ovid" he said, "if anyone is saved, you are."
I replied, "No, I'm not. Show me how to be saved." He proceeded to show
me that I needed to ask Jesus into my heart which I did.
The Lord moved us to another church where, once again, we were placed in
charge of the "soul-winning" visitation and the bus ministry. With very
few exceptions, each Sunday we had someone whom we had "led to the Lord"
in their homes, walk down the aisle and publicly profess asking Jesus into
After three years, we went on to the staff of another church and again
were given charge of the soul-winning visitation program. Here my job included
doorþtoþdoor "soulþwinning," as well as following up
the new children from the buses. I spent six hours a day, five days a week,
doing this. In my files I still have record of close to 1,000 names and
addresses of those whom I led to pray, "Jesus, come into my heart, and
save me." The only reason I mention this is to point out that, in this
particular area, I am not a novice I have been there.
I noticed something different about the pastor at this new church. He used
a soul-winning plan called "Circles and Steps" which he picked up from
Tom Wallace. I saw the difference in this presentation as he pointed out
the necessity of the substitutionary death of Christ before he said to
the prospect, "If you are willing to trust Christ as your Saviour, take
I felt this was a much better way of presenting the Gospel, so I changed
the plan I used from "Ask Jesus into your heart to save you," to "Take
my hand to show you are trusting in Christ as your Substitute and Saviour."
I had no problems with this until my pastor and I held a Christian workers'
conference in a little church in Missouri beside the Mississippi River.
At the conference, I was teaching a class on soul-winning and was speaking
about how so many people believed they were saved because they had walked
down the aisles, shook the preacher's hand and told him they believed that
Christ died and rose again (Romans 10:9, 10). Then they would go on to
be baptized, yet their sincerity didn't save them. A lady on the back row
raised her hand and said, "If that's true, then I'm not saved." Others
raised their hands speaking their agreement with her.
I had to call in my pastor for help in leading them to trust in Christ.
Everyone in attendance that afternoon was saved except the host church's
pastor, his wife, and a visiting pastors wife. 45 Christian workers from
the area's churches were saved.
As we made the 10-hour drive back home the following day, I was devastated,
and wept most of the way. The question which kept burdening my heart was,
"How could so many good, sincere people be so wrong?"
The next day, as we met with our ladies to send them out soul-winning,
I told of what had happened in Missouri. As I did, I saw the lady who was
in charge of our church's nursery program began weeping. I gave an invitation,
and she raised her hand. I sent her to my office to talk to her after dismissing
the others. As I walked into the office, she said, "You got me, didn't
you?" Surprised over what happened, I led her to trust in Christ.
Later that day, as I drove back to the church following some hospital visits,
the thought occurred to me: "Ovid, how do you know you are going to heaven?"
"Because I have asked Jesus into my heart," was my reply, knowing that
was not the right answer. I was then reminded that I had just led a lady
to trust in Christ as her Substitute and Saviour who had my false hope.
I wrestled with the matter, arguing, "I wouldn't be soul-winning every
day if I weren't saved.. I wouldn't be teaching the adult Bible Class..
I wouldn't be scheduled to be ordained if I weren't saved." (At this point
I was the Associate Pastor, had been licensed by the church, was doing
most of the baptisms and was going to be ordained in a few weeks.) "I wouldn't
be doing all of these Bible-based religious activities if I weren't saved."
We had taken a $600-per-month cut in pay to come to this church. I was
spending four hours each morning with the Lord, as well as fasting and
spending one night a week in prayer. As I thought on these things, I understood
that I was basing my Salvation upon all of my good works. ("I wouldn't
be doing all these things if I weren't saved.") Furthermore, I remembered
that God was not and would not be impressed with my good deeds.
Still not wanting to give in, I fled to some standard excuses which I had
confronted so many times in others: "Well, I didn't understand about the
substitutionary death back then, but I do now." Then I remembered that
we do not believe in evolution. The final argument to fall was, "What will
people think?" The answer to this was the one I had used so many times
with others: "Which is worse, hell or what people think?" [These were all
answers that I had used to convince others of their lost conditions. My
own arguments were coming back against my false hope.]
I put off a decision for another day, until Saturday morning. When I could
avoid the issue no longer, I called the pastor at his office. He came into
my office, and I told him I had to be saved. His response was that he knew;
every time he had asked me how I knew I was saved, I had answered, "Because
I prayed and ask the Lord to save me," or, "Because I prayed and accepted
Jesus Christ into my heart and life." I saw myself that morning as one
who was trying to climb into heaven by some means other than through what
Christ had done for me.
This pastor was caught in the trap; I must say with Paul in Philippians
3: I now count it all lost. I had spent 12 years under this false Plan
of Salvation; I taught it, practiced it and told people by the thousands
that they would be saved if they would "pray and ask Jesus into their hearts,"
when all the time I had nothing and probably gave them the same nothing.
I fled to Romans 10:13 and Revelation 3:20, but using them alone wrests
them from their contexts. Romans 10:13 is based on Romans 5:8 and 10:9-13,
Revelation 3:20 to a specific church. Anything less than a clear presentation
of the atoning work of Christ is not the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ;
it is another Jesus, 2 Cor 11:3 and Gal 1:6. Anything less than trust in
what He has done is not Biblical Salvation. Every Bible scholar in the
world can say differently, but that will not change God's Word - Yea, let
God be true and every man a liar... [Rom 3:4] It is not possible to be
saved unless God's plan is first clearly heard and understood.
Do not compare experiences yours with this pastor's or any other person's.
Let Us Know
If God has used this to speak to your heart about Salvation, please let
us know so that we may both rejoice and be encouraged as we do what we
can to advance the Kingdom of our God.
We have a monthly mail-out designed to look at the Biblical laws concerning
issues at hand, "The Biblical Examiner." In these mail-outs, we intend,
with God's help, to expose root problems using the Word of God, Matthew
3:10. Though we should be able to tell a tree by its fruit, today's seducing
spirits are so well developed that many times their lies are indistinguishable
from the truth; therefore, they are very misleading, 2 Corinthians 11;
1 Timothy 4.
Only when God's people realize their seductions from HIS Word and correct
it can we expect Him to hear from heaven and heal our land. But even if
He doesn't see fit to heal our land, we must still cry aloud and spare
These mail-outs are a ministry of our local church and will be provided
free of charge as the Lord provides. Also, if you could use more of these
little books, we will provide them as the Lord provides for us.
Send your name and address to:
Pastor Ovid Need Jr
The Biblical Examiner
Linden Baptist Church
P.O. Box 6, Linden, IN 47955.
May God help us to see the truth of His word, especially in this most important
The above is available in booklet form for passing on to others. We are
particularly interested in reaching Christian leaders. The booklet
is also available in Spanish from:
3131 S Archer Ave
Chicago IL 60608-6223
By Ovid Need, Jr.
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