ICOGSFG On The Gospel: Clueless

https://www.icogsfg.org/true-gospel.html

My articles about Mike Heiser continue to attract attention from his fanboys.  Among that crowd are heretics of various flavors.  A recent commenter on my site is apparently from ICOGSFG or the Independent Church of God Sabbath Fellowship Group.  Also known as Idiots Corrupting Or Goofingup The Solid Foundation of the Gospel. The connection between these Bible rejecting heretics and Heiser is that Heiser is currently employed by the Celebration Church in Jacksonville, FL which practices a form of Sabbath observance.  (Celebration Church is “pastored” by a husband and wife team.  But that foolishness is not the topic of this article.)

As expected, these people are not able to figure out that Sabbath observance, while not wrong, is a sign given to the nation of Israel.  

Speak thou also unto the children of Israel, saying, Verily my sabbaths ye shall keep: for it is a sign between me and you throughout your generations; that ye may know that I am the LORD that doth sanctify you.  Exo 31:13

And madest known unto them (Israel) thy holy sabbath, and commandedst them precepts, statutes, and laws, by the hand of Moses thy servant: Neh 9:14

Moreover also I gave them (Israel) my sabbaths, to be a sign between me and them, (Israel) that they might know that I am the LORD that sanctify them. Eze 20:12

And hallow my sabbaths; and they shall be a sign between me and you, (Israel) that ye may know that I am the LORD your God. Eze 20:20

For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom: 1Cor 1:22

Sabbath observers have two problems.  One: I’ve yet to meet one that believed the King James Bible is perfect, although I’m sure they exist.  Two: they don’t or can’t rightly divide the word of truth.  As such they get mixed up on the Sabbath and that ALWAYS leads to getting mixed up on salvation.  

Since they cannot rightly divide, they can’t find that there are multiple gospels in the New Testament.  We will look at their article on the subject in our usual manner.  We will point out their flaws using the King James Bible as always.

My comments are in bold.

Begin article:

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The word ‘gospel’ means good news or glad tidings. Like most heretics, they start out with some truth before they get to the rat poison of false doctrine.  

Mark began his gospel by stating, “The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.” Then he continues the theme of the gospel in verse 14, “Now after John was put in prison, Jesus came to Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, {15} and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe the gospel.””  So here we see that the Gospel of the Kingdom of God is the good news that the Kingdom of God is close.  Is that what you believe?  Is that what you preach when you preach the Gospel?  Is that the power of God unto salvation?  I sure hope not.  Paul didn’t preach this in I Cor 15.

So what is this good news that Jesus preached about that we are to believe? It is the message of the kingdom of God.  False.  This guy has just added his own private interpretation.  Nothing in the texts provided has stated this.  He is playing fast and loose with the scriptures.  From the texts in Mark 1, we see that the good news is that the Kingdom of God is coming soon or “at hand”.  We shall see that this is not aimed at lost gentiles in the 21st Century and no one’s eternal destiny depends on believing in the Gospel of the Kingdom of God today.

Mark continues this theme of the gospel in Mark 16 and verse 15, “Jesus said to His disciples, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. {16} “He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned.” Strange that these people who have articles against the King James Bible on their site, go to the end of Mark in this article.  They don’t believe that this text is in their oldest and best manuscripts.  Haha.  Hypocrisy much? Notice that you must believe the message of the good news Gospel that Jesus Christ preached to be saved.  Also funny how this heretic leaves out the context.  The context shows that if you believe this gospel, a few things will follow.  “And these  signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.” Mar 16:17-18.  If these guys believe and practice vs 15, do they believe and practice vs 17 and 18?  They don’t.  And they don’t bring it up.  These instructions are given to the apostles and their ministry to the Jews as we shall see.  But since these guys don’t rightly divide, they just ignore it.  

Where Did This Message Come From?

God the Father promised to send a messenger into this world from heaven, bearing a message from Him. The prophet Malachi prophesied this in his book in chapter 3 and verse 1, “”Behold, I send My messenger, And he will prepare the way before Me,” and that messenger, as explained in Mark 1:2, was John the Baptist, who prepared the way for Jesus Christ at His first coming.  Again, this is true.  What follows is the problem.  

The very first sermon by which God had the Gospel preached to the Gentiles was when Peter was sent to the house of the gentile Cornelius, recorded in chapter 10 of the book of Acts False.  These jokers just ignored the salvation of the Ethiopian Eunuch in chapter 8.  They ignored it because it didn’t fit their narrative.  There is nothing about a kingdom in the conversion story of the Ethiopian Eunuch.  Heretics always count on you just believing what they say and not checking them out.  Beware!  which gives us explicit directions for locating the one and only true Gospel, the Gospel we must believe in order to be saved. We shall see…

Peter said in Acts 10 and in verse 36, “”The word which God sent to the children of Israel, preaching peace through Jesus Christ; He is Lord of all; {37} “that word you know, which was proclaimed throughout all Judea, and began from Galilee after the baptism which John preached.”

Notice carefully these points:

1) With whom did this Gospel message originate? Peter said: “The word which God sent.”

2) To whom did God send it? Peter said “To the children of Israel.” Although now, 10 years later, this same Gospel was being opened up to Gentiles of all nations, originally it was sent to the children of Israel, and it was sent by God the Father. It did not originate with Jesus Christ, nor with Peter, nor with the apostle Paul. It was sent by God, the Father of Jesus Christ! Interesting how they added that this same Gospel “was being opened up to the Gentiles” considering nothing that we have read has said that.  If you want to prove something, give us a verse.  If there is no verse, then we will just assume that it’s just your opinion. 

3) Through whom was it sent? Who was the divine Messenger who brought and preached the message? Peter said “Through Jesus Christ” Jesus was the divine Messenger. Malachi called Him the Messenger of the Covenant. We will assume this is Malachi 3:1 although it isn’t stated.  In that text the first messenger is John the Baptist as is clear from Matt 11, Mark 1, and Luke 7.  The identity of the other messenger is not clear.  Without a clear reference to Christ being a “messenger” there is no reason to assume that the other messenger is Christ.  Of course, these heretics make this obscure passage a foundational text.  Typical.  That message, then, is the New Covenant message, for Moses was the mediator of the Old Covenant, and Jesus Christ of the New Covenant, as affirmed by many scriptures. Christ is called the “mediator of the New Covenant” in Heb 12:24.  Mediator and messenger are not the same.  This message, then is the New Testament Gospel. See how quickly they have moved from A to B to C to D to E.  That quick flow is intended to make you think they have proven something.  They haven’t. Nothing in this paragraph is clear from Scripture.  It’s all an assumption.  Check them out.  

4) Where was it first preached? To what geographical location shall we look for its beginning? Peter said it “Began from Galilee.” Yes Galilee, then is the place where it was first preached. Not Jerusalem but Galilee.  Ok.

When did Jesus begin to preach this Gospel in Galilee? Peter said “After the baptism which John preached.” The true Gospel of the New Covenant, then, did not begin with John the Baptist. It began after John had completed his baptismal ministry. Unfortunately, this Bible blockhead missed a verse that throws his whole chronological system into disarray.  John the Baptist preached that the Kingdom of God was at hand in Matt 3:2 which is about 6 months before Christ got baptized.  So this whole paragraph is a big nothingburger.  

Now those very definite directions lead us directly to the first chapter of Mark. “Very definite” my foot…  The first verse tells us this is the record of the beginning of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Then it relates the baptizing ministry of John, preaching, not the Gospel, but “A baptism of repentance,” which prepares the way for the Gospel that the living God sent by Jesus Christ (verse 4). John preached the same words.  How can the same words be different?

And then we come to verses 14 and 15: “Now after that John was put in prison” – there is the divine Messenger through whom God sent it – “came into Galilee” – there is the precise geographical location.

So we now have the time, the Israelites residing there to whom God sent the message, the place and the Messenger – so whatever we find Jesus Christ preaching here is the One and Only True Gospel.  No.

And what do we read? “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 and believe the Gospel.”

Notice, Jesus said, “Believe the Gospel”! What Gospel? The one Jesus was proclaiming, “The Gospel of the kingdom of God.”

But, one may ask, don’t we need to believe on Jesus? Of course. Other scriptures teach that. But at this particular time Jesus said we must believe Him, believe what He said, believe the Gospel of the Kingdom of God!

Some believed on Jesus, but did not believe Jesus, did not believe what He said (John 7:31,8:30-31, 46).  None of these verses SAY that this.  Notice how heretics aren’t careful with their words.  They can’t be careful with their words, or their whole system gets thrown out of whack!

Double Curse for the Wrong Gospel

Does it make any difference which gospel we believe? I thought there was only one???  Listen to the answer of God, as inspired in Paul’s letter to the Galatians, the first chapter and verse eight, “But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed.”  Now this guy runs to the Pauline epistles.  Why can’t he see that Paul isn’t preaching the Gospel of the Kingdom of God?  See I Cor 15:3-4.  There is no kingdom in the most clear definition of the Gospel for today in the Bible.  The fact is that if you preach that “The Kingdom of God is at hand” today, then YOU are accursed according to Galatians 1.  It’s not hard to see, unless you spend more time reading the rat poison of the ICOGSFG instead of the Bible!

And it is made a double curse! For the next verse says: “As we have said before, so now I say again, if anyone preaches any other gospel to you than what you have received, let him be accursed.”  Then ICOGSFG is double cursed according to the author of Galatians 1.

We hear a great deal today of the gospel about the person of Jesus Christ, confining the message solely to the things about Jesus. As a result, millions believe on Christ who do not believe Christ! But Jesus Christ’s Gospel is His Message!  Paul confined the Gospel, years after Acts 10 took place, to this: “For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:” 1Cor 15:3-4.  Remember that Paul’s preaching was ENDORSED by the apostles in Jerusalem in Acts 15.  A reminder for the simple: Acts 15 happened after Acts 10.  Paul confined the gospel solely to the things about Jesus.  Who are you gonna believe? ICOGSFG or Paul and the Holy Spirit of God?

And yet it was not only His, but His Father’s who sent Him, as He Himself said in John 12:49-50: “”For I have not spoken on My own authority; but the Father who sent Me gave Me a command, what I should say and what I should speak. {50} “And I know that His command is everlasting life. Therefore, whatever I speak, just as the Father has told Me, so I speak.””

Jesus’ revealed in His Olivet prophecy that “The Gospel of the Kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come” (Matthew 24:14). The Gospel of the Kingdom of God is the message that Jesus Christ said is to be preached and published today and then the end will come.  True, the Gospel of the Kingdom will be preached in the Tribulation which is the context of Matt 24.  Look at vs 21: “Great Tribulation.”  The majority of Matt 24 is in answer to the question of vs 3: “Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?”  If you think that will apply to today, then where is the abomination of desolation of vs 15?  Why is Christ specifically addressing people in Judaea in vs 16?  Why are pregnant women and nursing mothers in trouble in vs 19?  Why is the Sabbath being observed in vs 20?  Oh, that makes sense.  ICOGSFG is trying to put the 21st century believer into Matt 24.  This has been their goal all along.

To put the believer into Matt 24 is to ignore what Paul said to Gentiles (Rom 11:13).  What he says concerning eternal security doesn’t fit Matt 24:13 about enduring to the end.  His statements don’t fit Matt 24 on the abomination of desolation being a future thing (II Thess 2).  It doesn’t fit the fact that Paul never commanded saved Gentiles to observe the Sabbath. “Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days:” Col 2:16.  And there is no difference between the Jews and Greeks since Paul himself was a Jew.  

No final authority. Can’t rightly divide.  Messed up on the Sabbath. Typical of people who would get along with Heiser.  

Dump Heiser.  Dump the ICOGSFG.  Read, believe, and follow the words of God found in the King James Bible.  

See our article on the multiple Gospels found in the Bible here.

7 thoughts on “ICOGSFG On The Gospel: Clueless

  1. Unless I’m confused, Heiser had absolutely nothing to do with either article (the one from ICOGSFG or the one you wrote here) except by way of one member associated with ICOGSFG commenting about Heiser on a post of yours…about Heiser. It seems you are the one giving Heiser all the attention.

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    1. Haha. Sure, the connection is tenuous, but it does exist. I think it is right to assume that the original ICOGSFG commenter is a Heiser fan since he commented on my Heiser article. If that connection doesn’t work for you, then oh well.

      Sometimes introductory paragraphs are just a seque. The Heiser connection seemed a natural segue.

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      1. As far as “giving Heiser all the attention”, the blog has morphed into this since, although this blog doesn’t get tons of hits every day, I get about 10-25 hits per day on my articles about Heiser. It seems people are interested in the man and his teachings. People want answers, so I give them answers.

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      2. That is how I found your blog, I believe. I haven’t followed Heiser since he left Faithflife, but I’ve listened to some of his podcast episodes and have read a few of his books. He’s an Old Testament guy, but I tend to be more skeptical of some of his New Testament ramblings. I certainly don’t agree with everything he says either.

        How do you know what answers people want?

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      3. Well, I can tell from my blog’s stats that more than 10 people a day across the world are searching for Heiser and stumble upon my blog. So they are looking for info/answers about him and his teaching. Although I don’t know the specific answers they are looking for, I can use their desire to know about him as a springboard to get them the truth about two huge subjects that he is very, very wrong about. I’m speaking of the issues of the King James Bible and Dispensationalism.

        Where do you stand on those topics as someone familiar with Heiser?

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  2. I think Heiser appreciates the KJB, but would embrace modern textual criticism and prefer translations which utilize that methodology. I don’t know his primary translation or if he reads primarily in the ancient languages, but he seems to prefer the ESV for on his podcast and in his materials since it has incorporated material from the Dead Sea Scrolls into the running text (I’m thinking specifically of Deuteronomy 32:8-9, 43, but there may be other places as well).

    I prefer the traditional texts of the Reformation – the Masoretic Text for the OT and the TR for the NT. I’m open to hearing other arguments, but I have not been convinced on modern textual criticism. I don’t like that the text is never settled and the constant cycle of updates (even when the textual basis has not changed). Currently, the MEV is my primary translation – I’m aware this is a minority translation.

    I’m not familiar with dispensationalism or covenantalism, but I’ve heard the two terms being diametrically opposed in arguments. My limited understanding is that there is not a consensus upon what and when the dispensations are and vary depending on who you ask. Unfortunately, I couldn’t say much about either theology.

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    1. Well good. Thru much study, I’ve come to see these issues as paramount. I have dozens of articles on this blog (which is a personal hobby not my ministry) on both subjects. Feel free to peruse as your leisure and let me know if there’s anything I can clarify for you. Thank you.

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