It Is Not That Hard…Unless

Charles Pogue

Jesus’ familiar words in John 15:5 — “I am the vine, ye are the branches” — have been incorrectly understood and misused by those fooled by the false theory of ecumenicalism. They claim the branches are the various denominations of men. It is not difficult at all to see the falsehood in the idea. Who is Jesus speaking to in the context? His disciples. In the immediate context, the word ye refers to them. They are the branches. That other individuals may be a branch is understood by the next phrase in the verse, “He that abideth in me.” There is absolutely nothing in this or any other New Testament passage even remotely suggesting the branches can be identified with the hundreds or thousands of the churches of men. The question is, why is that false interpretation placed upon the passage? We shall answer the question shortly.

In Mark 16:16 Jesus said, “He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved: but he that believeth not shall be damned.” Those in the denominational world say because baptized is not included in the last part of the verse, it is therefore not essential to salvation. Jesus just said it was! Again, we ask the question why do men place a false interpretation on the passage?

The answer is very simple. Those in the denominational world have the preconceived notion that one is saved by faith alone without any actions on the part of the said believer. Though most would deny such is the case, their doctrine implies obeying the commands of God amounts to earning salvation via works. To state the real problem in simple language, men interpret the scripture based on their doctrine rather than understanding doctrine based on scripture.

Peter stated in so many words, “baptism doth also now save us” (1 Peter 3:21). Was Peter wrong? No. He was an inspired apostle writing inspired Scripture. Be it understood: It is not the water that washes away the sins, but the blood of Christ. Peter is relating when the blood washes those sins away. Baptism for the remission of sins is a must and a must to be understood.

In Paul’s letter to the Ephesians he states that Christ is the head of the church, which is His body (1:22,23). In Ephesians 4:4 he wrote in clear language there is one body. If the church is Christ’s body, and there is only one body, there is only one church. Any person who has not been misled by false doctrine can understand these simple truths of scripture.

The plan of salvation is not hard…unless. Unless what? Unless a person is unwilling to put aside beliefs which totally contradict what God has revealed in His Inspired Word. Maybe the person holds on to the doctrine of salvation by faith alone or one church is as good as another because believing and obeying the truth is harder in their mind than the error they hold. Maybe admitting the truth would compel them to understand the jeopardy the souls are in of family members who have already passed away. Whatever their reasoning is, putting aside the errors they have been taught and accepting the scripture for what it says, is a must. If one puts aside the false notions held by men regarding God’s plan of salvation, the role of the church in that plan, or any other point of truth revealed in the pages of the New Testament, it is very easily understood.

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Author: bible

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