"A Contrary Gospel"
June 12, 2012
But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed. Galatians 1:8
Iran's theologians are as happy as can be.
They have achieved this blissful state because they are prophesying -- they are promising -- that Christianity is about to fall to pieces.
They have come to this conclusion because of a book: The Barnabas Bible. The Barnabas Bible is a volume that surfaced when the country of Turkey broke open a smuggling ring.
According to the Iranian news service, the book which is written on animal hide and in the ancient Syriac language, says Jesus was never crucified, that He was not the Son of God, and that Jesus Himself stated that Islam is the final and right religion.
Wow! That's a lot to digest ... and if it's true, something that could destroy Christianity.
Should you be worried? Not in the least. You'll see why when I tell you the rest of the story.
Scripture does indeed say there was a fellow named Barnabas. The Bible also tells us that Barnabas, one of the earliest of the Christians, traveled with St. Paul and was an influential leader in the early church.
If that Barnabas had written the Gospel of Barnabas, it might indeed call for a second look.
But that Barnabas didn't write this gospel. The book wasn't written until the fifth or sixth century after Christ.
All of this means the document was authored by someone who wanted to change or destroy Christianity. He felt the easiest way to do that would be to claim he was the scriptural Barnabas.
It isn't the first time that kind of con job has been done, and it probably won't be the last.
This is why, no matter how many times Satan tries to fool us, we should hear St. Paul's words. He wrote, "even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him stand accursed."
My friend, God's Word still stands.
No matter what Iran's theologians might hope: the Holy Spirit-inspired Word remains true, and the Savior is the sacrifice who has saved our souls.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, the world is working so very hard at discrediting the Bible and undermining the Savior's sacrifice. We pray the Holy Spirit may move these hearts from rebellion to redemption. I ask this in Jesus' Name. Amen.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries