Another Yahushua? A Different Good News?

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Another Yahushua? A Different Good News?

“I’d be glad if you would bear with me in a little bit of foolishness. Yes: bear with me, please! I’m jealous over you, and it’s Yahuwah’s own jealousy: I arranged to marry you off, like a pure virgin, to the one man I presented you to, namely the Messiah. But the serpent tricked Eve with its cunning, and in the same way I’m afraid that your minds may be corrupted from the single- mindedness and purity which the Messiah’s people should have. For if someone comes and announces a different Yahushua from the one we announced to you, or if you receive a different spirit, one you hadn’t received before, or a different gospel [good news], one you hadn’t received before, you put up with that all right” (2 Cor. 11:1-4).

It is worthwhile to consider how Paul’s solemn observations here compare to the vivid warnings of Galatians 1:6-9: “I’m astonished that you are turning away so quickly from the one who called you by grace, and going after another gospel — not that it is another gospel, it’s just that there are some people stirring up trouble for you and wanting to pervert the gospel of the Messiah. But even if we — or an angel from heaven! — should announce a gospel other than the one we announced to you, let such a person be accursed. I said it before and I now say it again: if anyone offers you a gospel other than the one you received, let that person be accursed.”


Ancient Runis at Corinth

It is clear from Acts, within its wider Scriptural contexts (Acts 14:22; 20:24-25; 24:14-16; 28:20, 22, 23, 30, 31; Eph. 5:5-6; Col. 1:12-13; 1 Thess. 2:12; 2 Thess. 1:5, and many other pertinent references), that Paul had fully expounded the authentic, gracious gospel message of the coming Kingdom of Yahuwah, as previously preached and embodied by the Messiah — Yahushua himself. It is also quite evident that Paul had been instrumental in specifically introducing the true good news in Corinth (Acts 18:1-11 and 1 Cor. 4:14-15) and southern Galatia (in cities like Pisidian Antioch, Iconium, Lystra, and Derbe: Acts 13:14; 14:20) before writing the warning passages cited above (in 2 Cor. 11 and Gal. 1). So, those particular believers who were given solemn “wake-up calls” in Corinth and Galatia had heard the honest, pure Gospel first; they later needed serious reminders not to drift into a subtly twisted version of it, and thus to accrue the negative curses involved in following “another Yahushua” and “a different gospel” promoted by bogus instructors.

A reversal of sorts in this situation (concerning the 1st-century scenario of Corinth and Galatia) might need to be urgently understood by many (or maybe even most) 21st-century folks involved in modern Christian efforts. Many of us, nowadays, might have been introduced to a level of “Christian” thinking through “a different” (perverted or incomplete) version of “good news,” which effectively has heralded “another Yahushua” in our lives before we became exposed to the genuine Gospel of the coming Kingdom of Yahuwah! If that is the case, far from needing to get back to the message we originally heard, we desperately need to move away from the “original” false message previously embedded in our psyches (and in our former habits), in order to eagerly embrace the corrective influence of bona fide Kingdom of Yahuwah priorities!

Naturally, for those of us who have been familiar with a biblical, monotheistic understanding that carefully distinguishes Yahuwah from His unique Son, the popular package of unscriptural vocabulary which includes “God the Son,” “the God-man,” the Nicene Creed, homoousios (of the same essence or substance), the Trinity, pre-human existence, “God became a man” etc., is altogether a blatant red flag that “another Yahushua” has long been imported into traditional Christendom. But what about a more subtle version of “another Yahushua” that might even deceive biblical Unitarians? Could committed, unitary monotheists be badly seduced like the serpent enticed Eve? What is going on when folks lightly and jubilantly adhere to a Yahushua who is somehow divorced from his own words?

nicene creed icon

Icon depicting Constantine I and the bishops of the First Council of Nicaea (325), holding the Niceno-Constantinopolitan Creed of 381

The “Yahushua” separated from his very words might take on varied iconic forms, as expressed with diverse catch phrases, but can “he” really be the Anointed One (the Messiah), the Yahushua of Scriptures? Whether one has been indoctrinated subtly or boldly into the ideas that “the gospels do not contain the gospel,” or “Yahushua came to do three days of work,” or “Yahushua didn’t really teach anything new,” or even the stark dispensational claims that Yahushua’ teachings are “not addressed to Christians,” and that “the four gospels properly belong in the Old Testament”; sadly, “another Yahushua,” other than the Yahushua of Scriptural integrity, must be in play!

Powerfully and ironically, in light of the fallacious, clever-sounding phrases and ideas mentioned in the paragraph above, the great emphasis of the biblical Messiah’s very purpose and mission, in prophecy beforehand and in his actual ministry, cannot fit with a man totally divorced from his very own words! What did Moses prophesy about him?

“From among yourselves, from among your own brothers, Yahuwah your God will raise up a prophet like me; you will listen to him. This is exactly what you asked Yahuwah your God to do — at Horeb, on the day of the Assembly, when you said, ‘Never let me hear the voice of Yahuwah my Yahuwah or see this great fire again, or I shall die’ [Exod. 20:19]. Then Yahuwah said to me, ‘What they have said is well said. From their own brothers I shall raise up a prophet like yourself; I shall put my words in his mouth and he will tell them everything I command him. Anyone who refuses to listen to my words, spoken by him in my name, will have to render an account to me” (Deut. 18:14b-19).

Centuries later, Yahushua himself reiterated the vital, required nature of heeding his uniquely life-giving words in ways so precisely similar to the prophecy of Moses: “If anyone hears my words and doesn’t keep them, I’m not going to judge them. That wasn’t why I came. I came to save the world, not to judge it. Anyone who rejects me and doesn’t hold on to my words has a judge. The word which I have spoken will judge him on the last day. I haven’t spoken on my own authority. The father who sent me gave me his own command about what I should say and speak. And I know that his command is life of the coming age. What I speak, then, is what the father has told me to speak” (John 12:47-50).

“It’s the spirit that gives life; the flesh is no help. The words that I have spoken to you — they are spirit, they are life” (John 6:63).

“It’s the spirit that gives life; the flesh is no help. The words that I have spoken to you — they are spirit, they are life” (John 6:63).

“My teaching isn’t my own,” replied Yahushua, “It comes from the one who sent me! If anyone wants to do what Yahuwah wants, they will know whether this teaching is from Yahuwah, or whether I’m just speaking on my own account. Anyone who speaks on his own behalf is trying to establish his own reputation. But if what he’s interested in is the reputation of the one who sent him, then he is true, and there is no injustice in him” (John 7:16-18).

“But the one who sent me is true, and I tell the world what I heard from him.”...So Yahushua said to them, “When you’ve lifted up the son of man, then you will know that I’m the one, and that I never act on my own initiative; I say exactly what my father taught me. And the one who sent me is with me. He hasn’t left me alone because I always do what pleases him” (John 8:26b, 28, 29).

One might want to keep in mind that, according to the prologue of the gospel of John, Yahushua was the embodiment of Yahuwah’s ultimate purpose and plan (logos – “word”) which He (Yahuwah) had in mind from the beginning; hence, Yahushua, since his conception and birth, was “the word,” the previously foreknown message made flesh (John 1:14). His own “mission statement” in Luke 4:43 links him inseparably to his words: “I must tell the good news of Yahuwah’s Kingdom to other towns,” he said. “That’s what I was sent for.” The first Christians did not fail to make these vital connections. They never separated Yahushua (the prophet of Moses’ Deut. 18 prophecy) from his essential words commanded by his Father Yahuwah!

According to Peter’s discourse, “Moses said, ‘The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me, one from among your own brothers; whatever he says to you, you must pay attention to him. And everyone who does not listen to that prophet will be cut off from the people’...When Yahuwah raised up his servant [Yahushua] he sent him to you [Israelites] first, to bless you by turning each of you away from your wicked deeds.” (Acts 3:22, 26). Our Christian salvation (according to Heb. 2:3) was first declared by the lord Yahushua and was later confirmed by those who heard him directly; so, how shall we escape if we neglect so great a rescue?

Thus, to sweep away Yahushua’s words as obsolete relics of prior times under a hazy dispensational theology, or to embrace misguided evangelical zeal to fit all of “salvation” truth within a vague, minimalist “nutshell” can very well foster “a different gospel” presenting “another Yahushua.” Sure, the real Yahushua is the one who died for our sins and was resurrected from among the dead; nevertheless, to divorce those magnificent accomplishments from the required, repentant response of obeying his words is to court certain disaster.

The calamity predicted by Yahushua in Matthew 7:13-27 is aimed at enthusiastic ones in future judgments who sincerely call him “lord, lord” while giving “spiritual” evidence of their confident claims, but they will be rejected for not accompanying their “hearing of the word” with mandatory obedient actions. If “Christians” nowadays can read this section of Matthew 7 with smug self-confidence, while assuming “done deal” “born again” status, not based on Yahushua’ words (and with no Yahuwah-fearing reverence whatsoever toward Yahushua’s real words of warning), they are cruising for a bruising! Their effervescent “faith” might be in the iconic “Yahushua” of a quick, easy, “feel-good” symbolic ticket out of the threat of annihilation, but it is not true faith in the authentic Yahushua who must not be separated from his words! “Another Yahushua,” a false one of the easy-going “broad way” is obviously being promoted and sought by the world’s tricky agenda.

Repent, but not as a lightweight activity of mental assent; decide to have a genuinely decisive change of thinking and life direction. Choose assertively not to go with the flow of previous sinful habits — including the old presumptuous thoughts of misguided religion! Make a devoted pledge of loyalty, from and for a good conscience (to accompany such deep repentance “from the heart”) by getting baptized in water (Matt. 28:19; 1 Pet. 3:20-22; Acts; and Paul’s letters).

I write these few observations as one who underwent decades of gradual, but severe wrestling matches — to finally break free from the dispensational tentacles of OSAS (once saved, always saved) presumptuousness. In that setting the idea of obeying Yahushua’s words was boldly disregarded, as having nothing to do with achieving salvation! I do not hate or bash anyone for staying deceived in such an unscriptural, formulaic paradigm (often mislabeled in modern times as “grace” pitted in contrast with “works salvation”), but I lovingly offer these “wake-up call” considerations.

Paul did not fail to “hold firmly to the words of our lord King Yahushua” which he equated with “the teaching which goes with piety” (1 Tim. 6:3). He never stated or implied that Yahushua’s words were to be downplayed, as if they were later replaced by his (Paul’s) words.

Why not do the following, in agreement with Yahushua’s words and all the consistent new covenant (NT) writings, starting with the four gospels? Swallow your pride (like I did), and absolutely determine to stop trusting formulaic ideas rooted in divorcing Yahushua from his vital words!

Repent, but not as a lightweight activity of mental assent; decide to have a genuinely decisive change of thinking and life direction. Choose assertively not to go with the flow of previous sinful habits — including the old presumptuous thoughts of misguided religion! Make a devoted pledge of loyalty, from and for a good conscience (to accompany such deep repentance “from the heart”) by getting baptized in water (Matt. 28:19; 1 Pet. 3:20-22; Acts; and Paul’s letters).

Stay the course of making proactive choices according to the parable of the sower and the parable of the vine and the branches, with great confidence that obedient actions will produce godly fruit. Keep Yahushua’s direct teachings, his very own words, as the foundational understanding of all new covenant standards. Read and reread his words in context, and then practice them! Continually ask Yahuwah and Yahushua to help you stay on track, as you stay focused on the goal of the arrival of the Kingdom of Yahuwah. If you make mistakes and get sidetracked by inadvertent sins, confess your sins, while being humbly confident in Yahuwah’s exceedingly fair, trustworthy love, as He constantly forgives you all sins and cleans you deeply from all wrongdoing (1 John 1:5- 2:2). Prayerfully trust Yahuwah to help you grow day by day (2 Pet. 1:3-11), and never give up (Col. 1:23.) Resolve to “hang in there” no matter what current obstacles crop up. Help others to be “doers of the word” in the same way you go in by the narrow gate — and avoid the distortions of false prophets! Such continual efforts to live Yahuwah’s authentic love, according to Yahushua’s indispensable words, will not prove to be in vain!

father and son

This is a non-WLC article written by Kenneth LaPrade.
We have taken out from the original article all pagan names and titles of the Father and Son, and have replaced them with the original given names. Furthermore, we have restored in the Scriptures quoted the names of the Father and Son, as they were originally written by the inspired authors of the Bible. -WLC Team