WCG Misunderstands Forgiveness of Sin


Worldwide Church of God Transformed from Truth to Fairy Tales


Yesterday, WCG sent out the following by its Joseph Tkach:

Why do we need faith if Jesus has already made us right with God?

The Bible tells us that in Christ, God has already done everything necessary for every person’s salvation. In Romans 5:18-19, for example, the apostle Paul wrote:

“Consequently, just as the result of one trespass was condemnation for all men, so also the result of one act of righteousness was justification that brings life for all men. For just as through the disobedience of the one man (speaking of Adam) the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the one man (referring to Jesus) the many will be made righteous” (NIV).

What Jesus did, he did for all humanity, and he did not wait for anyone to change their ways or improve their behavior before he acted. As Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 15:22, “For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive.”

1 John 2, verse 2, tells us that no one is left out of Jesus’ atoning work for humanity.

“He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world.”

Since every person’s sins are already forgiven, what is the need for faith?

Simply this: We cannot participate in something we either don’t know about or don’t believe is true. It would be like having a million dollars in the bank but never knowing about it. Or maybe knowing about it, but not caring. In either case, the million dollars would do us no good, even though it is sitting in our account.

In a similar way, our salvation means nothing to us unless we believe it…

Sadly, it seems from certain passages in the Bible that some people don’t want God’s salvation, even though in Christ it’s already theirs. Maybe they love evil so much that they want nothing to do with good. Yet Jesus died and rose again for them as certainly as he did for the most devoted of his saints.

Refusal of God’s love cannot diminish his love; Jesus died for us even while we were sinners, while were his enemies, as we’re told in Romans 5, verses 8 and 10.

That’s good news, because it means that God’s gift of salvation does not depend on you in any way..

First, contrary to what J. Tkach implied, salvation would be important whether one believed it or not.

It is sad that WCG simply does not understand much about the Bible or salvation anymore (the above seems to be a follow-up to another mistaken teaching I reported on earlier, please see WCG, Grace, and License).

Second, contrary to what J. Tkach wrote, the Bible does not teach that all sins ARE forgiven, only that they can be in the future:

Therefore I say to you, every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven men, but the blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven men. Anyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man, it will be forgiven him; but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit, it will not be forgiven him, either in this age or in the age to come (Matthew 12:31-32).

While it is true that in that age to come almost all sins will be forgiven, since that age is NOT yet here, all sins that will be have NOT yet been forgiven–they have only all been atoned for.

Third, WCG simply no longer seems to understand that no one will be saved UNLESS they repent and accept Christ. Thus in several important ways, whether or not YOU accept the salvation offered by God most certainly does depend on YOU in certain ways.

Notice what Jesus told His disciples:

…that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. And you are witnesses of these things (Luke 24:47-48).

Notice what one of those disciples, Peter was inspired to preach:

“Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, as many as the Lord our God will call” (Acts 2:38-39).

Notice that only after repentance and the acceptance of Christ is there a remission of sins. Not before.

WCG seems hesistant to tell the whole story.


Because it would then have to address the question, “What is sin?”

To which the Apostle John was inspired to write:

…sin is the transgression of the law (1 John 3:4, KJV).

Since one is repenting from transgressing the law, then WCG would either have to say that we should keep sinning or change (which is what the word repent actual implies).

What did the Apostle Paul teach?

Do we then make void the law through faith? Certainly not! On the contrary, we establish the law (Romans 3:31).

And that is true. Real Christians accept the sacrifice of Christ (cf. Hebrews 9:26; 11:4), real Christians repent (Acts 2:38), real Christians attempt to follow Christ (1 Corinthians 1:11–and Jesus kept the commandments Himself–see John 15:10), and real Christians strive to overcome sin (Hebrews 12:4).

It is only those who promote evil that do not teach that Christians should try to keep God’s commandments.

Several articles of possibly related interest may include:

What Did Jesus Teach About the Ten Commandments? This article quotes what Jesus actually said about them (His words are in red).
Were the Ten Commandments Nailed to the Cross? Some have said so. This article provides some biblical quotes to answer this important question.
What Did Paul Actually Teach About the Ten Commandments? Many say Paul taught against the ten commandments. Is this true? This article quotes Paul with his words in green.
Are the Ten Commandment Still in Effect? This article quotes the ten commandments and combines some of the previous articles into one article about the ten commandments. The commandments are shown at Mount Sinai, before Mount Sinai, in the teachings of Jesus, after the crucifixion, and in the teachings of Paul. It addresses the most common “traditions of men” regarding them as well.
Were the Pharisees Condemned for Keeping the Law or Reasoning Around it? Many believe that the Pharisees were condemned for keeping the law, but what does your Bible say? If they were not condemned for that, what were they condemned for?
The Ten Commandments Reflect Love, Breaking them is Evil Some feel that the ten commandments are a burden. Is that what Jesus, Paul, Peter, James, and John taught?
Was the Commandment to Love the Only Command? Some have stated that John’s writings teach this, but is that what the Bible really says?
The Ten Commandments and the Early Church Did Jesus and the Early Church keep the ten commandments? What order were they in? Here are quotes from the Bible and early writings.
Universal Offer of Salvation: There Are Hundreds of Verses in the Bible Supporting the Doctrine of True Apocatastasis Do you believe what the Bible actually teaches on this? Will all good things be restored? Does God’s plan of salvation take rebellion and spiritual blindness into account?
Hope of Salvation: How the Living Church of God differ from most Protestants How the Living Church of God differs from mainstream/traditional Protestants, is perhaps the question I am asked most by those without a Church of God background.

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