They Ignore God the Father… Do You?
by Herbert W. Armstrong
page 33 Plain Truth May 1980There are two basic common and universal errors in the preaching of the “Gospel” by this world’s “Christianity.” WHAT ARE THE two most universal errors in the proclaiming of the “Gospel” by the various sects and denominations of traditional Christianity today? 1) They ignore God the Father, and 2), they proclaim a FALSE GOSPEL—in which God the Father is mostly ignored. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is the good news that Jesus Christ, as God’s Messenger, brought. In other words, the message GOD THE FATHER sent to mankind by His Son and Messenger (Malachi 3:1) to mankind. Jesus said plainly, “I speak that which I have seen with my Father . . . for I proceeded forth and came from God; neither came I of myself, but he sent me” (John 8:38, 42). Again, Jesus said, “The words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, He doeth the works” (John 14:10). In the first sermon Peter spoke to gentiles, he said, “The word [Gospel] which God sent. . . preaching peace by Jesus Christ. . .” (Acts 10:36). That message from God the Father was not proclaimed to the world from the middle of the first century, when it was suppressed, until the middle of the 20th century. Then, after going to the United States coast to coast, it began, January 7, 1953, reaching all Europe. What has been proclaimed? MAN’S “gospel” about the Person of the Messenger, but omitting His MESSAGE, which came from God the Father. Now how else do they ignore God the Father? They preach Christ—but Him only. Let me explain something here. There are two WAYS of life: 1) the way of GETTING, receiving, acquiring—the way of SELF-centeredness; and 2) the way of GIVING, of helping, cooperating, sharing, of outflowing LOVE—which is the way of GOD-centeredness. Now how do they of traditional Christianity preach? Assuming that this is the only time of salvation, they plead with people, “RECEIVE Christ”—in other words, “GET,” not “GIVE.” They believe the blood of Jesus—Christ’s death, gives LIFE. But LIFE cannot come from death! Notice Romans 5:10: “For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to GOD [the Father] by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his LIFE.” We are not saved—given eternal life—by Christ’s shed blood—by His death. We are reconciled to GOD THE FATHER by Christ’s death. How is that? The penalty of SIN is death. Sin IS the transgression of God’s LAW (I John 3:4). There is ONE Lawgiver. NOT Jesus, but God the Father! When we sin we are CUT OFF FROM GOD THE FATHER! That is what modern “Christianity” ignores. All have sinned. All have put an impassable WALL between themselves and God the Father. We must be reconciled to God first, for it is HE who has eternal life to give! How may we be reconciled to God the Father? By REAL REPENTANCE. Repentance is toward GOD the Father, and faith is toward Jesus (Acts 20:21). Once we truly REPENT, which means a complete change of ATTITUDE, way of life and purpose, then our faith in Jesus Christ and His shed blood for payment of the penalty of our sins, destroys that impassable WALL between us and GOD the Father—and we then may receive His Holy Spirit—after we have GIVEN our life, through repentance and faith, to Christ, who bought and paid for it by His DEATH. Then our salvation—gift of eternal life—is made possible by Christ’s RESURRECTION—by His LIFE! But this world’s Christianity thinks it may receive eternal life from Jesus’ DEATH, and from Jesus ALONE—leaving out the FATHER. And once converted—changed—what then? We must KEEP reconciled to GOD by obedience to His Law. If we make a slip, or fall down along the way, then IF we “confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins” (I John 1:9). Of course, traditional Christianity has lost sight of GOD’S LAW and of what constitutes SIN. They ignore the fact we must be first reconciled to God THE FATHER! None can come to Jesus for eternal salvation, except God the Father first draws him! Jesus said plainly in John 6:44: “NO MAN CAN come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him.” It is God the Father who decides whom He shall call. It is God the Father from whom we have cut ourselves off by transgressing His Law. It is the Father who has the Holy Spirit to give. The sinner must first of all, upon being called, REPENT—change his mind and attitude in regard to sin, and obedience to God’s WAY OF LIFE! How does God call one? He DRAWS one (John 6:44) by the magnetic POWER of His Holy Spirit, working externally from outside one. Through His Spirit, God convicts one. On the very day Christ founded the Church, Peter had preached a Spirit-inspired sermon. Three thousand there were “pricked in their heart”—”they were cut to the heart” (Revised Standard Version); “it went straight to their hearts” (Moffatt translation). In other words their whole minds and attitudes were convicted of guilt and changed, ready for repentance—a COMPLETE CHANGE to GOD’S WAY OF LIFE. This led them to repentance TOWARD GOD THE FATHER. Then they BELIEVED on Jesus Christ, were baptized, and God the Father then gave them His HOLY SPIRIT! Now WHAT GOSPEL did Jesus bring from God the Father? What was the MESSAGE the Father sent to mankind by Jesus? In Mark 1:1, 14, 15, we read: “The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ. . . after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee preaching the gospel of the KINGDOM OF GOD, And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the KINGDOM OF GOD is at hand: repent ye, and believe the Gospel.” Jesus proclaimed the GOVERNMENT OF GOD, based on the LAW OF GOD, to rule the whole earth, at Christ’s Second Coming—now SOON! The KINGDOM OF GOD is the divine born FAMILY OF GOD, of which God the FATHER is Father of the entire Family. Today, by leaving God the Father out of their message, the churches of traditional Christianity do not know that a real and true Christian may be, in this life, only BEGOTTEN by receiving the Holy Spirit—which is the begettal of God-life—and may be BORN a full GOD BEING, immortal, composed of Spirit, at the resurrection of the just—at Christ’s coming! In a word, by ignoring God the Father, they make the life, Gospel, death and resurrection of JESUS CHRIST utterly MEANINGLESS! Let us be sure we have God the Father and the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ BOTH in the picture, as they, themselves, have placed themselves! ]]>