Christ Is Risen. Go Quickly and Tell…

Israel Garden Tomb EntranceThe “Garden Tomb” in Israel.
1 Corinthians 15:17
And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins.

Thankfully, the Cross on Calvary is empty~ The tomb where He lay is empty.

Beware those teachers who would deny the power of the Resurrected Christ to have paid for ALL sins of the whole world. As He said on the Cross, “It is finished”!!.

Here is such a denial, according to the guru of Lordship “salvation” John MacArthur:

Salvation isn’t the result of an intellectual exercise. It comes from a life lived in obedience and service to Christ as revealed in the Scripture; it’s the fruit of actions, not intentions. There’s no room for passive spectators: words without actions are empty and futile…The life we live, not the words we speak, determines our eternal destiny (John MacArthur, Hard to Believe, p. 93).

Pure HERESY!

Now the exciting and joyful Good News:

Matthew 28:1-7
[1] In the end of the sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week, came Mary Magdalene and the other Mary to see the sepulchre.

[2] And, behold, there was a great earthquake: for the angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat upon it.

[3] His countenance was like lightning, and his raiment white as snow:

[4] And for fear of him the keepers did shake, and became as dead men.

[5] And the angel answered and said unto the women, Fear not ye: for I know that ye seek Jesus, which was crucified.

[6] He is not here: for he is risen, as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay.

[7] And go quickly, and tell his disciples that he is risen from the dead; and, behold, he goeth before you into Galilee; there shall ye see him: lo, I have told you.

We believe in a living resurrected Savior Who was crucified, buried and rose again as our substitute sin-debt payment. Jesus alone is the object of our faith.

Eternal Life Is FREE <<Click

Another Gospel – The Truth about Lordship “salvation.”

Our friend Mark Andre has produced an amazing Biblical video, proclaiming the Truth of the Gospel of Grace and exposing all that is wrong with Lordship “salvation,” Calvinism and other false teachings.

Mark called several months ago asking permission to use some material and ideas from ExPreacherMan.com. We are happy we consented.

The progression of the video keeps your attention — Mark explains the simplicity of the Gospel of Grace and then, naming names, he exposes the preachers and proponents of “works salvation” (Probation). This mission is especially important to Mark because his is a former member of John MacArthur’s church. He realized the Truth, abandoned the lie perpetrated by JMac and is dedicated to exposing those who insist on adding works to the Gospel of God’s Grace.

This is a must watch video. Please recommend it to your friends, especially those who may be mixed up in false teaching. It is also a good doctrinal review for all believers.

Great job, Mark!!

Eternal Life for You << Click

Rock-Paper-Scissors: Calvinism/Lordship Salvation’s Game of Deceit

From Wikipedia: Rock-paper-scissors is a hand game usually played by two people, where players simultaneously form one of three shapes with an outstretched hand. The “rock” beats scissors, the “scissors” beat paper and the “paper” beats rock.

In trying to defend the gospel against Calvinism and Lordship “salvation” (LS), many are playing a theological game of rock-paper-scissors, in which their tepid defenses of the gospel are vulnerable to defeat.

LS is the unsupportable belief that the PERFORMANCE of good works, the PROMISE of good works, or the EVIDENCE of good works MUST accompany faith in Christ in order to make that faith result in eternal life.

Performance-promise-evidence are the rock-paper-scissors of Calvinism/LS. A defense of the gospel that allows room for any of these, either directly or indirectly, is no defense at all. It is an attack.

So, how is this game played? Unfortunately, Satan plays hard. There is no end to the number of ways he tries to deceive people into attacking the gospel. I will cover three of them.

Allies who attack the gospel.

This so-called “defense of the gospel” brings in “allies” who want to maintain only part of the integrity of the gospel.   For example, a teacher can rail against the evils of promising good works in exchange for salvation, but then endorse the evidence of good works as being a necessary result of salvation.

Some other examples are:

Using LSers to defend against Calvinism;

Using Calvinists to defend against evolution;

Using LSers to defend against the dangers of reformed theology.

Calvinism and LS share the same theological roots. The point at which they intersect is the Calvinist tenet of “perseverance of the saints.” Anyone who embraces any of the tenets of Calvinism or any of the tenets of LS is not a dependable ally in trying to advance or defend the gospel. Using any such people in defending the gospel will only lead to further blurring of the gospel message.

 Pretending that LS is new.

Another half-hearted “defense of the gospel” includes the notion that somehow Calvinism/LS is relatively new – that it came into vogue, and was popularized by John MacArthur. Imbedded in this argument is that Biblical Christianity has only recently become subsumed by LS. This might also include the notion that some of the “big names” in the past were teaching Biblical Christianity, but that their modern adherents have deviated from their teachings. For example, some defenders of the gospel believe that John Calvin wasn’t really a Calvinist!

But, the attempts to insert works into the gospel have been around since they early church. It is discussed at length in the book of Galatians. Most of what passes for “church history” is really false works for salvation.

Depicting Calvinism/LS as something new gives the impression that older teachers (such as John Calvin and Charles Spurgeon) are dependable, when in fact they were false teachers.

Giving some people a pass.

I am really mystified by this. Someone can give a full-throated denunciation of John MacArthur’s false teaching, but treat others who have written and said the same things as sacred cows.

It should be obvious that giving anyone a pass for distorting the gospel, while calling others to task, is no defense of the gospel at all.

Romans 1:16:  For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.

As we each strive to advance and defend the gospel message, let us be particularly vigilant against the tactics outlined above, and the dangers they present to lost people, babes in Christ, and even to mature believers.

Lordship Salvation: Honoring God by Calling Him a Liar

Romans 3:27:28:  Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? of works? Nay: but by the law of faith.  Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law.

Lordship Salvation (LS) is the unsupportable belief that the PERFORMANCE of good works, the PROMISE of good works, or the EVIDENCE of good works MUST accompany faith in Christ in order to make that faith result in eternal life.

Lordship “salvationists” (“LSers”) pay lip service to believing in salvation by grace through faith in Christ, but add statements that betray their real belief in salvation by works. By insisting on adding works to the salvation equation, LSers are calling God a liar.

LSers will try to disguise their disbelief in the gospel with self-righteous statements such as:

No man can have Jesus as Savior without having Him as Lord!

This is to insert the work of obedience to Christ as a phony condition to receiving eternal life.  The implication is that the LSer has himself done this, so that he can boast that he has done something other than trusting in Christ to earn his place in heaven.

Should we encourage a person to have assurance of salvation who persists in this, that, or the other sin?

This is to insert the work of turning from specific sins as another bogus add-on condition to receiving eternal life.  The obvious implication is that the LSer doesn’t commit these specific sins, so he has earned his way into heaven by trusting in Christ and not engaging in these sins.

A true Christian will have a change in behavior, attitude, etc.

 This is to insert works into the back end of the salvation equation. The implication is that the LSer thinks his behavior has improved, that he is becoming more holy, and so on.

The intrepid LSer will almost always say that works don’t save anyone, but that works will always accompany salvation.  Consider this recent excerpt from an LS commenter at ExPreacherman (purportedly through his brother), who definitively states that he would not go to heaven if he did not have any good works to show for himself:

I asked him, “If you live the rest of your life without changing one iota, without doing one good work, will you go to heaven?” He said “No”, but he still affirms that he is trusting in Jesus alone to save him from his sins. He denies that he is trusting in his changed life. He said that we are not saved by having a changed life. A changed life is not what saves you. He said that Jesus alone saves people. He said that a changed life is evidence of being converted, not the cause of our salvation.

This patently absurd line of reasoning works like this:  One doesn’t have to do works to get into heaven.  But, a real Christian will always do good works.  Therefore, if one doesn’t have good works, he won’t get into heaven.

In their minds, LSers are honoring God by making obedience, discipleship, and good works contingencies to receiving eternal life.

In reality, LSers are dishonoring God by distorting the gospel, frustrating grace, calling God a liar, and trying to bring glory to themselves.

Here is the real story on how to have eternal life: http://expreacherman.com/eternal-life-for-you/

John 3:18 Denudes and Proves False the Main Tenet of Calvinism, Predestination

Calvinists believe that God chose certain individuals to be saved, consigning all others to a hopeless eternity in hell, before they were ever born.

The prospect of a god that would create precious human beings expressly for the purpose of eternal destruction is abhorrent.  The God of the Bible provided a means of salvation to any and everyone who will trust in Jesus Christ as Savior.

One of the often-overlooked verses in refuting the unbiblical notion that people are predestined to either heaven or hell is John 3:18:

“He that believeth on him is not condemned: but, he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed on the name of the only begotten Son of God.”

How could someone who has not believed be condemned already if God has pre-ordained that he will go to heaven? We know that Jesus cannot lie, so we must accept what He says here at face value.

Believers were condemned before they believed in Jesus as Savior.  Non-believers are still condemned.

Non-believers are condemned BECAUSE they are non-believers.

How much more clear can it be?

Eternal life is available for everyone – including you.  Check here:  Eternal Life For You

Lordship Salvation: The Enemy of Grace

By Co-Administrator, John

The Bible says that salvation is the gift of God, available to anyone and everyone who believes in Jesus Christ as Savior.  The Bible is explicitly clear that salvation is a free gift, without cost or obligation to the believer.

Not only is the Bible explicitly clear that salvation is a free gift to the believer, but it says it in a number of different ways so that the hearer or reader of the Word can understand.  For a reasonably comprehensive list of verses that state that justification is by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone, please see the article linked below:

http://expreacherman.com/believers-justification/

In contrast to the Biblical gospel of grace is the false gospel of Lordship “salvation” (LS).  LS is the unsupportable belief that the PERFORMANCE of good works, the PROMISE of good works, or the EVIDENCE of good works MUST accompany faith in Christ in order to make that faith result in eternal life.

Those who believe in LS (LSers) have a range of conditions they have added to the gospel.  Some own their LS outright, and others try to hide it.  But, LSers have one thing in common:  they do not believe the gospel.

Some LSers are eternally secure believers who have been bewitched by LS, while many others are false professors who may have never even heard the Biblical gospel taught clearly.  In any event, LSers do not believe the gospel now.

In trying to reach LSers with the gospel, we face an exceedingly difficult task.  Because they are deceived, most will respond to the gospel with incredulity, suspicion, and even outright hostility.  If we are clear in our message, we should expect to elicit such responses.  We should respond to honest questions with Biblical responses, but we must also use prayerful judgment in when to move on.

Some of the tactics that indicate hostility toward the gospel message are:

Asking convoluted questions – just as the Pharisees tried to trap Jesus with shrewdly-worded questions, the implacable LSer will use craftily-worded questions to try to trick us into agreeing with some subtle LS precept.

Putting words in our mouths – misrepresenting what we say, sometimes repeatedly.  This most often takes the form of accusing us of teaching grace as a license to sin.

Creating divisions – going from one of us to the next with the same questions in order to try to find inconsistencies between our answers.

Feigning ignorance – this is often used to disarm us.

Appealing to our emotions – using an emotional appeal, such as personal hardship, affinity, or gratuitous compliments to nudge us toward their theology.

Making personal attacks – criticizing us for being “puffed up” or “heretical” and acting offended to try to soften us up and elicit apologies.

Repetition – to quote the late Vince Lombardi:  “Fatigue makes cowards of us all.”  This tactic is designed to wear us out.

Swarming – getting other people to weigh in with the same or similar points.

Name dropping – quoting some famous theologian to add credibility to their arguments.

Following is a quote from Clear Gospel Campaign on a tactic employed by those hostile to grace:

It is usually easy to separate those hostile to the doctrine of grace from those who are genuinely seeking the truth in a few minutes of conversation.  Those hostile to grace and unwilling to hear the truth will typically ask dishonest questions with terms that have multiple meanings.  By this tack, no matter how you answer the question, the theology of grace can be shown false.

 A typical question might be:

 “Oh, so you’re telling me that once someone is saved, they can do whatever they want, and they are still saved?”

 Of course, the truth of the matter is that, apart from epileptic seizures, snoring, and other involuntary actions, each of us does exactly what we want twenty four hours a day!  The reason I pull my hand out of a hot stove is because I want to.  The reason I eat is because I want to.  The reason I sin is because I want to.  And the reason I flee from sin is because I want to.  In truth, the question is so trivial as to be meaningless.  A “yes” answer does not even hint at a person’s theology!  It only shows their sense of personal responsibility over their own actions.

 As tempting as it is to think that we can come up with the perfect way to explain grace to an implacable LSer, we must prayerfully determine when to move beyond repetitious discussions with LSers who are not interested in the truth.

TRUTH!! Eternal Life For You <click

Lordship Salvation: Salvation by Works

(Following is an e-mail we received from a reader, along with our response.  We chose to publish this, since this question gets to the heart of the purpose of the ExPreacherman ministry.  The gentleman who wrote this is more honest than most Lordship “salvationists” in that he admits that he believes that our works are inextricably linked to the gospel message.  Please note that we have removed the individual’s name, as well as the NKJV biblical text of James 2:14-26.  The e-mail is in italics, and our response is in plain text.  We have added bold to parts of each for emphasis)

Comment: So, I don’t really get the point of an entire blog built around the idea of fighting something called “Lordship salvation.  I mean, don’t like seriously ALL your arguments about taking things out of context fall apart when you read stuff like this (James 2:14-26) in the Bible?

 I mean… it’s like reiterated over and over in that passage. It takes two to tango, so why are you so concerned about it that when I Google Francis Chan, I find all these articles talking about how awful he is here on your blog? I mean, dude… how is that even remotely helpful to folks? You blog about how he’s scaring people because he’s focusing too much on the works part of the gospel. Aren’t you doing the same thing by scaring people by focusing on another aspect of the gospel?

 Why don’t you just write him a letter or something if you think he’s taking things too far? Like this… because frankly brother, I think you’re missing the forest for the trees, or some other relevant metaphor.

 Anyway. Maranatha! God bless

Thank you for your comment to Expreacherman.com.

We are very familiar with the passage from James 2 that you cited.  In fact, I have been listening to a sermon series on James for the past few weeks.  Following is a link to a booklet on this topic that I think you might enjoy reading.

http://expreacherman.files.wordpress.com/2012/08/cucuzza-faith-without-works-is-dead.pdf

You said something in your comment that underscores why we think it is essential that we proclaim the gospel, and clear up some of the false conceptions people have about how to receive eternal life.

You said:  “You blog about how he’s scaring people because he’s focusing too much on the works part of the gospel. Aren’t you doing the same thing by scaring people by focusing on another aspect of the gospel.”

My comment:  There is no “works part” of the gospel.  People who never realize this are going to miss out on eternal life.

The gospel is that Jesus Christ – God in the flesh – died for our sins, was buried, and was raised from the dead.

Whoever believes in Christ alone as Savior has eternal life, which can never be lost, forfeited, or taken away.

However, trusting in Christ plus one’s works for salvation means that one is not trusting in Christ.  The Bible makes this very clear:

Ephesians 2:8-9:

[8] For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:

[9] Not of works, lest any man should boast.

Romans 11:6:  And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace: otherwise work is no more work.

 We are not trying to scare anyone by our focus on the gospel.  We are trying to help people who may have never heard the gospel, or have not heard the gospel explained clearly know how they can have eternal life through Christ Jesus.

I am going to provide a link to a booklet called “The Gospel” that I think will help explain things further.

http://www.cleargospel.org/booklet.php?b_id=3

Thanks.  John

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If you would like to know how you can receive God’s free gift of eternal life through Jesus Christ please see the following:  Eternal Life For You