2Co 11:4-6 “For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him. For I suppose I was not a whit behind the very chiefest apostles. But though I be rude in speech, yet not in knowledge; but we have been throughly made manifest among you in all things.”
We must be careful to study the word of God and to pay attention to the leadership of the Spirit. God is not divided, and therefore, the Holy Spirit is not going to lead us in a direction that is contrary to the word of God. The true gospel of Jesus Christ is going to bring life and immortality to light. The gospel does not create life but rather manifests the life that God has already put in us.
Paul is calling on the church here to closely examine the truth of Jesus Christ and not be beguiled as Eve was (see verse 3). It would appear from Paul’s words here that some had come among them declaring that there was a better savior than the Jesus that Paul preached. This supposedly better Jesus was supposed to have a better spirit and a better gospel than Paul had demonstrated. Paul concludes that if this were true, then the Corinthians would do well to hear that man.
The next statement of Paul’s might seem on the surface to be rather boastful. He says he was not in any way lesser than the very best of the apostles. However, if we consider Paul’s own repeated testimony, we understand that he was boasting of God and not of himself. He repeatedly reminded the churches that he was an apostle by the will of God.
Paul was calling on the church to remember that they had received him as an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God. If this was true, then those that came preaching a different version of Jesus could not be telling the truth. If they came with a different spirit than the one Paul preached, their words could not be true. If they came with a different gospel, then it was not really good news.
Paul indicates that he did not consider himself a trained orator (rude in speech). Yet, he assures the brethren that he was not in any way lacking in knowledge as it was revealed to him by God. He says that they (and we) should not be fooled by fancy language and smooth speech. Instead, we should try the spirits and examine the word to see if there is agreement with the Holy Scripture and with the witness of the Holy Ghost within us.
I believe that the church today is just as capable of discerning the truth as it was in Paul’s day. I believe this because God is the same today as He was then. The working of the Holy Spirit and the truth of the gospel have not changed with the passing of time. God still thoroughly manifests His gifts in those that He has called to share the good news of Jesus Christ.
The gospel of Christ does not require any embellishment. The Spirit of God has no need for improvement because that Spirit works with godly perfection. There is no one more fitting to be our Savior than He who had the power to lay down His life and to take it up again. The only true Christ is He who did “by Himself” purge our sins and take His place on the right hand of the Majesty on high (Hebrews 1:3).
May the saints of God refuse any other Jesus; any other spirit; any other gospel than that preached by those whom He has called and qualified!