“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.”
Isn’t that a little harsh? Why would Paul say such a thing? We understand that no one wants to be damned. But, surely there is a better way to handle this scenario — unless, perhaps, the alternative would have even greater consequences.
Defined in the simplest of terms, the Gospel is the good news about what Jesus has done to reconcile sinners to God. But, the world in which we live touts tolerance for all worldviews, which means Christians are tempted to modify the gospel for those and other reasons.
Sometimes we are trying to be smaller targets for those who would ridicule us for our beliefs. Other times we are genuinely afraid of offending someone. And, it is possible that we want more congruence with our political beliefs and our faith. Regardless of our intent, watering down the Gospel to suit our purposes robs us and others of experiencing its full power. For their sake and yours, stay alert!
You will know when you are tempted to make changes to God’s truth. If you start to feel defensive in a conversation about spiritual things, you are vulnerable. If you are fearful that a friend will think less of you and the relationship is in danger, you are vulnerable. If you avoid conversations about God, you are vulnerable.
Recognize that this is the devil at work:
“Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.” I Peter 5:8 ESV
Stand strong against the enemy when you are tempted to compromise the Gospel for things of this world. What is comfortable at the time will not be worth the cost later.