by J.C. O'Hair
No minister of Christ who is a faithful steward of the mysteries of God (1 Cor. 4:1-4) would, during this age and dispensation of grace, preach water baptism unto repentance for the remission of sins, as did John the Baptist. Nor would such a minister preach for today Acts 2:38, "Repent, and be baptized...for the remission of sins." No Bible-taught evangelist led by the Holy Spirit would tell a sinner seeking eternal life to keep the commandments and sell his property, as Christ on earth told the man in Luke 18:18-26. Nor should he or any other Christian preacher tell the people to sell all their houses and lots and personal property and place the proceeds in the hands of the preacher, as was done in Acts 2:44,45 and 4:34,35. No "grace" messenger of the Lord is told to raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, preach "The kingdom of heaven is at hand," and journey without cash, as Christ instructed His apostles in Matthew 10:5-9.
"Grace" messengers know the difference between Matthew 6:15, 18:23-25, and Ephesians 4:32, forgiving a fellow-man as the condition for God's forgiveness and forgiving in the Name of Christ because we are already forgiven by God for Christ's sake. No "grace" messenger today expects angelic visitations, miraculous jail-deliverances, supernatural demonstrations and visions, physical healings, and speaking with tongues, such as were experienced and practiced by God's people during the "Acts" period. As we compare Matthew 5:9 with Colossians 1:20, we see the difference between the human peacemakers and the Divine Peacemaker.
The Pauline truth, or Christ's truth given to and through Paul, concerning "the dispensation of the grace of God" and "God's eternal purpose in Christ" is the cure for almost every ill and -ism with which the Church of God is afflicted. This final truth given to complete the Word of God (Col. 1:24-26) and recorded in Paul's prison epistles is the death blow to all cults and -isms.