Discernment Ministries Gone Wrong

I am usually the optimist, yet somewhat suspicious and skeptical at times.

It pleases me to find many friends commenting on our posts who are fellow discerning believers in Jesus Christ. We thank the Lord for you.

There are times when we find links to some great clear Grace Blogs and Conservative web sites.

Some web sites we independently investigate claim the “Grace” title, and yet upon close examination they turn out to be either “Calvinist grace” or Lordship faith blogs like John MacArthur’s – Grace to You.”) While I admit Mac is an avid opponent of the terrible ecumenical Manhattan Declaration, New Mysticism, Yoga and Contemplative Spirituality, etc, he still promotes his theory of “lordship or commitment faith” for salvation.

And then we see many Discernment Ministries, which I have recommended on this Blog, promote some bad doctrinal errors.

Apprising Ministries, Ken Silva: Advertises MacArthur’s Web site, Grace to You as well as Alpha and Omega Ministries, an extreme Calvinist web site, plus many more.

The Berean Call, A great resource for sound Biblical Doctrine yet – they frequently and favorably quote John MacArthur. I sent a note and questioned Dave Hunt “Why??” Tom McMahon gave the answer as — MacArthur frequently has great thoughts that should be repeated (and credited to Mac?).  Hmmmmm. That is rubbing shoulders with and promoting an enemy of the Gospel of God’s Grace.

Lighthouse Trails Research, Another excellent resource on the wrongs of New Age, Contemplative Spirituality, etc, yet they frequently and favorably quote MacArthur, either purposely ignoring or oblivious to Mac’s Lordship/Commitment “salvation” message.

Ingrid Schleuter – While great on the Emergent Church, Warren’s Purpose Drivel, New Age, etc she strongly promotes Calvinistic and or lordship teachers, such as MacArthur, Paul Washer, John Piper, Ray Comfort, etc.

These are just a few examples that really disappoint me and it hurts that there are many more.

I am at a loss for a solution except that we who are discerning believers in Jesus Christ must be Bereans and search the Scriptures daily, “whether those things were so.”

“And the brethren immediately sent away Paul and Silas by night unto Berea: who coming thither went into the synagogue of the Jews. These (Bereans) were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.” Acts 17:10-11

Do you, dear readers, have any ideas or solutions?

Eternal Life IS Free

61 responses to “Discernment Ministries Gone Wrong

  1. I sort of feel like there needs to be an actual Free Grace denomination. Then we can join together and make our own good ministries. Of course, the main obstacle with that idea is that would probably be differences on non-soteriological issues, such that we might not all fit into one denomination.

  2. Hi Drew,

    You are right — but I fear such a group might go the way of other denominations, into error.
    There are Free Grace organizations we may join and follow now, some great and some who have strayed. We still need to be Bereans — and check out by Scripture, what anyone teaches.

    In Jesus Christ eternally, Jack

  3. Drew,

    Here is a link to Free Grace Alliance where you will find some great studies on real Free Grace (not the fake). Bruce Bauer, a friend who occasionally writes and comments here also writes for their group. They have some thorough studies.


    In Jesus Christ eternally, Jack

  4. Hi Pastor Jack:

    Timely subject. Thank you for always being willing to point out error in doctrine wherever it pops up.

    Subject to your approval, here are a couple of other Free Grace links that I would recommend: GraceLine Ministries—its president, Dr. Fred Chay, is also the current president of Free Grace Alliance. The site contains a number of good articles. GraceLine is hosting an annual Free Grace conference in Phoenix on April 16. I will be attending. Here is the GraceLine site: http://www.graceline.net/

    GraceLife Ministries—its founder and president, Dr. Charles Bing, was a founder and former president of Free Grace Alliance. Dr. Bing (Charlie) travels the globe preaching a message of grace, primarily to third-world pastors. His ministry has been very effective in freeing these pastors from their background of legalism and lordship teaching. His web site contains many helpful articles. I have found it to be very informative on the unbiblical nature of lordship salvation teaching. GraceLife’s site:

  5. Thanks Bruce,

    Sorry for the delay in approving.. Any post with more than one link is held in moderation — as some nefarious trolls post multiple links to porn sites. I was distracted for a couple of hours with medical situations.

    Thanks for linking to the other good Free Grace sites.. (I say “good” since there are some who advertise themselves as such but aren’t — as you know).

    In Jesus Christ eternally, Jack

  6. Hi Jack,

    Haven’t seen you around my neck of the woods. Are you doing ok?


  7. Hi Sue,

    Thanks for asking — my health is poor and I am not as perky as normal.. But I do read all your great Blogs and have a couple I wanted to comment upon but haven’t. Barely am able to post my own blogs periodically.

    Don’t give up on me — unless the Lord takes me home — and then you may rejoice with me. ;-)

    In Jesus Christ eternally, Jack

  8. Never giving up on you, Jack! You remain in my prayers for a full recovery.
    Your standing firm and contending for the faith is a great testimony to me, especially when your feeling lousy. God bless you and Shirley.

  9. Pearl,

    Thanks for your prayers.. and I will contend as long as the Lord gives me the ability.

    In Jesus Christ eternally, Jack

  10. Dear Jack.

    I will also be praying for you! I had a feeling you were not up to par.
    God bless you Jack.
    I will pray for you and your wife, and hope you will be back to your perky self soon. The blogoshere needs you.
    You are a blessing.
    In Him,

  11. Dear Sue,

    Thanks for your prayers.. We greatly appreciate them.

    Still and always –
    In Jesus Christ Eternally, Jack

  12. Hi Jack-

    I didn’t realize you were not doing well these days. I hope everything is OK and it is something temporary, like a cold or something, and you will be back up and running soon. I will keep you in prayer in the meantime.


  13. JanH,

    Thanks for your concern… Just my lungs acting up.. Had A Bronchoscopy last Thursday “just to see what else is going on down there.” CT Scan shows a bunch of problems.
    Won’t know for 2 1/2 weeks the final results or what to do – if anything.
    Have a couple of great Docs who know what they are doing and they will unless Obama puts me on the Death Panel. I’m that old and that infirm..
    But I really don’t trust BO or the Docs like I trust the Lord.
    Soooo, “Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.:” Philippians 4:11
    And to make it even better, my Sweet Shirley and I celebrate our anniversary today..

    In Jesus Christ eternally, Jack

  14. Happy Anniversary!

    I am confident that America is still the best place for medical care. I know you’re in good hands, and ultimately, in His.

    (oh, and “Hi, Jan :-) !”)

  15. Happy Anniversary Mr. and Mrs. Jack!! :)

    I don’t think the death panels are in play yet. You will probably miss them by natural means, Lord willing. I hope they are able to fix your lung problem.

    Hi Pearl!!

    (It’s still raining and cold here and will be for the rest of the week. :( )


  16. Thanks JanH,

    Shirley and I had a nice quiet day with a delicious takeout dinner from some fancy restaurant (mind slips me now — nope it wasn’t Meals on Wheels).
    I’d like to think we believers will all miss the death panels by the soon Rapture — to be with our Savior forever!! Lookin’ UP ^^^

    Too cold?? — move down here to S. FL !!

    In Jesus Christ eternally, Jack

  17. I’d like to think we believers will all miss the death panels by the soon Rapture — to be with our Savior forever!! Lookin’ UP ^^^

    Amen to that!!!


  18. I had an interesting experience with Lighthouse Trails last year. I e-mailed them, asking why they promote some false teaching. I got a hostile response back, and the woman responding to my e-mail didn’t answer my question. I was banned from posting on Lighthouse’s website, then completely blocked. Wow!

    VCY America, which Ingrid Scheulter works for, is Calvinist. I e-mailed VCY America last year, expressing my concern of their Calvinist views. I got a response back from someone named Roy. It was generic: “Thank you for letting us know. We will be in prayer over this.” I stopped listening to VCY America. Another radio station to beware of is KLOVE. They are New Age. I wrote to them, expressing me concerns over that, and they referred me to one of their radio station Pastors. I never got in touch with the Pastor. I also stopped listening to KLOVE.

    I received some bad counsel from The Berean Call, Dave Hunt, when I was looking for a church to attend.

    Bible Tracts, Inc., a ministry that prints Bible tracts, has some false doctrine and false messages in their tracts. I recieved a packet of tracts, and I’m glad I read them before using them. Bible Tracts referred me to two cults, which they recommended as gospel preaching churches. I informed them that these were cults, and I also told them that I was concerned about their false tracts. They defended their message. In their newsletter, which I got this week, they are taking about repentance. They refer to the Bible as “the gunpowder of repentance,” and give reference to Hebrews 12:6 and Acts 16. They also say, The Holy Spirit sparks the work of repentance often by using a crisis in our life.” Hmmmm…

  19. Marcella,

    I praise God for your outspoken stand against false teaching inside and outside of the body of Christ. And I praise God and I am excited that God delivered you from a cult. You have an amazing gift of discernment for someone so recently freed from a cult. Please continue to speak out clearly and boldly for the simple straightforward gospel truth of the Bible (Ephesians 2:8-9). May God truly bless you and keep you strong in your faith in Jesus Christ.

  20. Marcella,

    You have had a lot of interesting confrontations in your Christian life.

    There was a time when I quoted Schleuter, Berean Call and Lighthouse Trails but after a few confrontations of my own, I began to realize there is error in each, It is difficult to find good clear sources from organizations these days.

    I order my “Heaven Tracts” from Quentin Road Bible Baptist Church. They are clear and simple. You will either have to call them or find the source on the web site.

    It is great that you have the discernment to recognize error, depart from the problem and stick with the truth.

    In Jesus Christ eternally, Jack

  21. Jack,

    Thanks for your recommendation of Quentin Road Bible Baptist Church and its web site. Having attended the recent Grace Conference there, I gained an immense respect for their pastor, Dr. James Scudder and his gifted staff, including his son, Jim. They truly preach a simple and clear message of the gospel: we are saved by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone (Ephesians 2:8-9).


  22. I think discernment has gone wrong in many ways. So much of it is needless negativity. It is about who is wrong, damned, and on their way to hell. There is no grace in any of this. I believe God’s grace forgives error just as much as it does sins. I am tired of what’s wrong with Rick Warren and Billy Graham. Did these people believe the gospel? Are their errors damning them to hell? Are their errors any worse than your errors?

    On the other hand, when it comes to really dangerous heretics like John MacArthur, who are wolves in sheep’s clothing, let it all out. Let people beware damnable heresies like Romanism and Lordship Slavation (type intended).

  23. Jason,

    Thanks for dropping by. I like your phrase, “Lordship Slavation.” Very apt description..

    Discernment is simply a matter of knowing God’s Word applying and abiding by it.

    We are asked to discern:
    “But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.” Hebrews 5:14

    We who proclaim the Gospel are concerned with those who pervert, change or deny it. When we see that we must warn our believing friends.. That is what we do here, whether it be Graham (a “turn from sin” salvation message) or Rick Warren’s ecumenical everything-but-the-Gospel message. We proclaim and warn just as we see in Paul’s admonition to the Corinthians (and hence all believers then and today):
    “I write not these things to shame you, but as my beloved sons I warn you.” 1 Corinthians 4:14

    Proper discernment of the Truths of God’s Word are vitally important.

    In Jesus Christ eternally, Jack

  24. It is difficult to sort out the truth from gossip, and there is so much of the latter on the Internet, which is filled with the mad ravings of Jack Hyles, Jack Schaap, Steve Van Nattan, and David J Stewart. These people lead their own cults and rail against true believers. They represent a strict, intolerant King James Only view. They make condemning judgements about every disputable matter. They condemn any teaching of salvation that differs slightly from their own. And when you do research, you find that they lived as complete hypocrites with immoral practices and damnable doctrines to justify them.

    The teachings of the Disciples of Christ cult also pollute cyberspace with their teaching of baptismal regeneration.

    And of course there are MacArthur and his henchmen.

    They all have the “I am of Apollos” mindset. They are carnally minded. They are cultic.

  25. There are so many views about salvation out there: say a prayer, only believe, repent and believe, believe and repent, change your mind about sin and believe, believe and bear fruit, and total commitment (slavation).

    When I have doubts about salvation, the only thing that settles them is renewing my trust in the finished work of Christ. Repentance cannot do that; only trust can. Worrying about how much repentance, how much fruit, or how much commitment I have does not settle my doubts; only confessing that there is nothing I can do or have done that makes me worthy.

    Even the content of my doctrine doesn’t give me assurance. There is so much doctrine and so many possibilities for error. You can study all the scriptures with the all the helps you can get, and still you can be in error. No one is perfect doctrinally.

    I could pick a doctrine and condemn everyone who does not agree with me. But what would that accomplish? It would just create the appearance of a cult. Or I could preach a simple gospel that only requires faith in Jesus. People may disagree with what kind of faith saves. But the important thing is the object of their faith, which is Christ.

    I don’t know where the allegations against Warren and Graham come from. They have been floating around the Internet and they are frequently used by the cultists that I mentioned (Hyles, etc.). “Everything but the gospel” is a mischaracterization. I agree that these teachers often teach error, but that is not to say they don’t teach the gospel.

  26. Jason,

    There are not many Gospels but only one, illustrated by many verses in God’s Word. It does not change by proclamation from a religious guru or by a whim or one’s interpretation.
    The Gospel: 1 Corinthians 15:3-4
    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:
    John 3:16-18
    For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
    He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

    Acts 16:31
    And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.

    FYI Graham taught and preached that one must turn from sin to be saved. (False repentance).
    Warren’s messages are full of error and we have written many articles here detailing just that. Search our site for that info:

    Jason, Salvation is NOT faith plus works as those men teach but ONLY by Grace alone through Faith alone in Christ alone..
    Romans 11:6 speaks of the absolute incompatibility of Grace and works:
    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.
    It is either one or the other — can’t be a mixture.

    In Jesus Christ eternally, Jack

  27. Jack, thanks for the pure, sweet gospel message. Here’s another Bible verse that pertains to grace, not works: “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.” Ephesians 2:8-9

    Praise the Lord that we are saved by grace through faith in Jesus Christ. We do not have to do anything to earn God’s favor or approval. Those who mix works with grace are creating a false gospel. I had a friend, who has been baptized several times. Every time she senses that God is about to do something big in her life, she gets baptized or does some other thing to show people that she is serious about being obedient to God. She’s mixing in works and is sorely deceived. She uses this passage of scripture to justify her works to please God: “Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” My friend thinks that if people see the good deeds she is doing for God, He will bless her more or she will earn more favor. I have shared the gospel and my testimony with her, but she refuses to accept the truth.

  28. I want to add that Lutherans believe this, too: “We are saved by Grace alone through Faith alone in Christ alone.” That’s what the Pastor said to me when I was meeting with him to join the Lutheran Church. So, Jack, you believe like the Lutherans do! LOL! What I don’t understand is why Martin Luther added works to the gospel: baptism and communion and said these offer salvation. That’s so false, and I reject it!

  29. Marcee,

    The Pastor of whom you speak sounds double tongued. They advertise in their Statement of Faith that they believe in baptismal and communion (works) aid in salvation and then claim, “We are saved by Grace alone through Faith alone in Christ alone.” Two different things.

    Have fun in your searches. 8-)

    In Jesus Christ eternally, Jack

  30. Yes, and that is dangerous, adding confusion to a gospel that is really quite simple.

  31. Jason A Crupper

    That is something I notice most evangelical tracts do: make the gospel confusing or vague. “Believe in Jesus” somehow turns into “receive him” or “accept him into your heart”, none of which are Biblical.

    I have never liked vagueness in other matters. I have learned that I should also reject a vague gospel.

  32. Jason,

    Vagueness in the Gospel is not good and your are right that your example of “accept him into your heart” is totally inaccurate, as is “Give Jesus your heart/life” and all the other phrases people use but can’t explain.

    But — “receive Him” is Biblical — yet like so many phrases, needs further explanation.
    John 1:12
    But as many as received Him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:”

    Often when I share Christ I may not have more than a minute or less – so I will explain as much as time allows– which is rarely a complete explanation of the Gospel.. Then I will leave them a Gospel tract and my web site through which they may follow up. Or on the occasion of writing one of these articles, I try to remember to include at the bottom, a link to my Gospel note above, “Eternal Life for You.”

    In Jesus Christ eternally, Jack

  33. We need to know the Bible and what it says about how a person becomes saved. So many people and sources out there have their own plans of salvation, many of which are false and leading people down a path on the wide road, which leads to destruction. I asked Jesus into my heart several times during my lifetime because there were many times when I doubted whether or not I was really saved. I ended up deceived and under attack by the devil. Nowhere in the Bible does it say we need to ask Jesus into our heart. The disciples, apostles and followers of Jesus Christ didn’t ask Him into their heart. This heresy is misleading alot of people. I know someone, who is involved in the Good News Clubs for Child Evangelism Fellowship (CEF). She tells kids that they need to ask Jesus into their heart. I don’t know if that’s what CEF teaches or if it’s just a model that my friend uses. I hope I’m not getting off topic here, but just wanted to talk about the issue of asking Jesus into your heart and believing then you are saved. Don’t do it

  34. Sounds a lot like me. I’ve asked Jesus into my heart many times as well. Only recently did I read a Bob Wilkin article condemning that nonsense.

  35. Jason,

    Good to realize you are clear on salvation..
    Though Wilkin and the GES have in the past produced some acceptable works on free Grace, I would kindly suggest that,you steer clear of their more recent teachings which have been termed “The Crossless Gospel.”
    Here is an article on our Blog you might want to read — and especially the comments by Lou Martuniac on “The Crossless Gospel” by Wilkin and GES.


    Or to get more info from a very reliable study source, go to Duluth Bible Church web site (Duluth MN) and search “The Crossless Gospel.” They have an extensive study on Wilkin and the GES.

    Here is a link to the church which has a search facility:

    And here is a publication by that church, The Grace Family Journal – with PDF file-topics available.

    In Jesus Christ eternally, Jack

  36. Hi Jason, Marcee and Jack:

    I’ve been about five hundred miles from home this week so it was a pleasant surprise to come back to discover this enlightening conversation. Thanks Jason and Marcee for your insights and participation. Thanks, too, Jack for your straightforward clear presentation of the biblical gospel.

    Jason, you talked about how some preachers and writers distort the simple gospel message of the Bible. You may want to read the following article, entitled “Grace Baiting,” which details how the lordship faith camp distorts and caricaturizes the grace gospel:


  37. I am guessing that a majority who are tired of people compromising have learned to compromise themselves. What if Paul had just overlooked what Peter and Barnabas were doing and not called them hypocrites, and not told them they weren’t straightforward about the truth of the gospel? (Gal 2)

    What if John had just compromised and gone ahead and received and greeted the people who weren’t abiding in the doctrine of Christ (2 John 1:9-11)

    Many don’t want to be deceived but they don’t want to go “too far” either. They aren’t able to define Biblically what “too far” is, instead, they are uncomfortable when the ones they think are sound are compromising so they’d rather look the other way, or…. get mad at you for naming them.

    This is not easy is it? Praying for you Jack and Tom and Bruce. God bless you gentleman, my brothers.

  38. Thanks Holly,

    Right, it is not always easy but Paul did not shirk his duty to call out error. Now, in addition to Bruce and Tom we have others, who are several among many:

    One is a prominent businessman who was tricked by Lordship “salvation” for twenty years and trusted Christ as his Savior a year and a half ago. Wonderful testimony and brilliant discernment now. He is ridiculed by his business friends.

    Another a homeschooling mother of several has a great testimony about how she grew in Grace away from the snares of false LS teaching.

    Another gentleman has sound straight doctrinal comments and like most who comment here cannot find a solid Grace teaching Grace church in his town.

    And so many others who comment here, growing and sharing the good news of God’s Grace with our readers.. We pray for all of them and you.

    Thank you Holly for your testimony also and your love of our Savior and desire to see the lost believe in Jesus Christ alone. Yes, we will be reviled. You should see some of the comments which never make it past moderation..

    I am blessed to be in fellowship with all of you who read and comment on our articles.

    In Jesus Christ eternally, Jack

  39. Hello, I am a baby discerning Christian and after years of being lost in false teachings I am earnestly seeking the true Jesus and the true gospel.
    I spent years in terror of not having the security that I would be experience eternal life because I felt I could lose my salvation if I fell short – after all we have to “work out our own salvation with fear and trembling” and believe me I was with fear and trembling. One question that is haunting me though is if there is Eternal Salvation which I believe, what would be the motivation for false teachers to not continue with their false teachings. After all, once-saved, always-saved so they will still be eternally saved so there is no penalty for leading millions of people astray. Won’t those preachers who were initially saved and those people who were saved and follow all this false teaching still be saved?


  40. Hi Judith, welcome; good question.

    I am glad to hear that you believe in eternal salvation; Scripture affirms this: John 10:27-30; Romans 8:38-39. Your question is not babyish or naiive in any way. It is actually rather complex and multifaceted. I will try to break things down and respond to each category systematically.

    A. Regarding the motivation behind these Lordship Salvation teachers, that is difficult to pinpoint. I suppose that it varies person to person. Here are some possibilities:

    1. Some LS teachers may have been duped by their mentors and thus they actually sincerely believe in the LS lie that they proclaim to others.
    2. Some may be purposeful deceivers.
    3. Others may be seeking power and control over other individuals.
    4. Some may relish the fame and popularity that goes along with publishing books and speaking at conferences.
    5. Some may be excorcising their own demons of doubt and guilt about their own lack of assurance of salvation through feverishly pushing LS teaching to the masses.
    6. Misery loves company???
    7. Various combinations of the above categories.

    B. Are out and out LS teachers, writers and preachers really saved?
    I can’t make a blanket statement about that question. Many are undoubtedly lost; however if a man were truly saved by grace alone through faith alone in Christ Jesus alone, then he remains eternally saved. If at some later point in time he is led astray to believe the lie of Lordship Salvation and even proclaim it to others, does he lose his eternal saved status? Absolutely not! But he sure could lose all of his joy along with his lost assurance of salvation; he could lose potential rewards in heaven (2 Cor. 5:10 and 1 Cor. 3:10-15); he could become accursed (Gal. 1:8), not meaning “damned;” it could refer to a loss of blessing or having a trouble-filled life and/or it could again refer to loss of heavenly rewards.

    C. What about those individuals who have been influenced by the LS teachers? Can they be saved? Yes, if, in spite of the LS influence they have heard the true gospel elsewhere and have trusted in Christ alone by grace alone through faith alone. Perhaps they got saved by reading the Bible and believing what it says.
    The more sad question is, how many people were kept from the truth of the grace gospel by these teachers of false doctrine and thus remain unsaved?

  41. I do not see once saved always saved supported in Bible without excluding other texts. I do believe Dr. Brown is making a huge statement these days concerning proper discernment with right attitudes as he rebuttles cessationists, Calvinism and Marcionism or the hyper-grace movement that iron may sharpened.

    (Note: link removed by administrator)

  42. Darren, welcome to ExPreacherMan and thank you for your comment.

    Once saved always saved (the eternal security of the believer) is consistently taught throughout scripture. If eternal life is not eternal, then why would it be called eternal life?

    John 5:24: Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.

    I don’t know who Dr Brown is, but if he is teaching something other than the unequivocal security of the believer, then he is teaching a false gospel.

    For the real story, please read the booklet linked below:


  43. Sharon Rose

    I think we can glean from the outstanding research of Lighthouse Trails and others (even those who preach LS) . . . If one knows the doctrine of Salvation (by faith and grace alone) . . . then they will recognize any incorrect slants in apologetics ministries, but still be able to glean from the research.

  44. Sharon, I don’t agree with the “eat the meat, spit out the bones” approach. We are to mark and avoid false teachers, particularly those who corrupt the gospel. The “research” done by people who don’t know how to tell someone how to get to heaven can not be relied upon.

  45. Darren, Dr. Michael Brown is an Arminian Pentecostal who hangs out with Benny Hinn, (should be marked and avoided for both his doctrine and associations) Made popular for his debates with hyper Calvinist James White. He also has a little of the Hebrew roots thrown in, interesting mixture, but he definitely teaches you can lose your salvation. His associations are very bad and he excuses it, his teachings are not good either, I hope you will mark and avoid as Romans 1:16-17 tells us.

  46. Sharon, sure we can glean from the research, however, to suggest it, is dangerous. As John mentioned, if we trust their info to be reliable, we may also start hearing some of their other teaching. People far too often determine themselves as not able to be deceived, but all throughout the epistles we are told we certainly can be, and what to do about it. Mark and avoid. Don’t keep company with those who do not obey the epistles, withdraw from those destitute of the truth, don’t even wish people godspeed, don’t give them place for an hour so that the truth of the gospel might remain.

    I think that last one from Galatians 2 really hits home with any teaching Lordship because you are taking advice or getting information from a Judaizer. Might some of it be true? Certainly. Satan also used the Word, but twisted it. Didn’t even apostles get carried away with their hypocrisy? We need to be careful, it’s best to do what we’re told in His Word. People don’t know if that meat has been poisoned by the bones. We shouldn’t be drinking from the wrong cistern.

  47. Sure wish I’d found this site years ago when expreacherman was still with us.

    Interestingly, some of the info in his post confirms what has come to my attention over the last year. There are so many otherwise excellent discernment ministries which exhibit LS tendencies, or have been co-opted by LS.

    For instance, Lighthouse Trails has been a great help to me in uncovering what has been going on with Calvary Chapel over the last few years. My wife and I were longtime attendees, married at CCCM in 1981. CCCM was the church I found after coming out of the RCC in the mid ’70s. Their emphasis on through-the-Bible study was a breath of fresh air compared to the stifling, death-ridden dogma of RC-ism. Yet, they had their weaknesses then, and those weaknesses have borne corrupt fruit, especially lately. LHT helped us sort out the issues and compromises of CCCM, leading us to break from them completely a few years ago.

    So it seems strange to see LHT associated with doctrinal compromise, but then, the LS issue has been underlined in my awareness only recently. Strangely enough, on LHT’s “Our Beliefs” page, under “Salvation”, one finds this statement:

    “We believe repentance means to acknowledge one’s sinfulness and desperate need for a Savior, to turn to the Gospel (i.e., to believe the Gospel and trust fully Christ’s payment on the cross for his/her sins).”

    No LS there. Isn’t that the Free Grace definition of repentance in a nutshell?

    Yet, some of the people they promote emphasize “turning from sin” in their definition of saving repentance. Whether the same people are fully LS isn’t clear. There seems to be some inconsistency on that point.

    I wish I knew of some Free Grace people who were as good at sounding the alarm about Rick Warren, contemplative, emerging, purpose-driven “spirituality”, and so many other heresies infesting the Church today as Warren Smith, Roger Oakland, Ray Yungen, and others at LHT who may have LS tendencies.

    I can’t help wondering; how “pure” does a person’s doctrine have to be for their materials to gain at least qualified acceptance from a Free Grace believer (which I am)? I don’t advocate compromise, certainly not where the Gospel itself is concerned. But otoh, since we know that no mere human’s doctrine is perfect, where do we draw the line?

    I haven’t found a definitive answer to that yet.

    The only thing I know to do is to continue praying that these otherwise soundly biblical discernment ministers are delivered (as I was) from any LS bondage that may grip them, and to encourage them in what they have right, which is a lot more than most.

  48. Chas, nobody’s doctrine is perfect, but when they compromise the gospel with “turn from sin” in order to be saved, they have completely changed the gospel into a false gospel of works. Compromise and cooperation in ministry with people who do this is why Lordship “salvation” is so prevalent today.

    There is no such thing as a mild form of Lordship “salvation”, any more than there is a mild form of pregnancy.

  49. Chas, I know what you mean, I think it’s kind of a sleight of hand in some cases, look at that person, takes the attention off themselves. Not saying they are aware of what they are doing, but it’s almost a circus to see Benny Hinn ‘exposing’ Joel Osteen.

    I like John draw the line at the gospel, if they allow those that compromise the gospel to write their articles with no warning that “although we agree that the error they expose is indeed there, we have to warn against their gospel”.

    At least that. I’m so tired of seminary teachers even who are supposed to be free grace, yet are quoting Spurgeon, Luther, Augustine, etc. to not just their students but to people they’re teaching in church and never with a warning — I do not at all agree with this man’s doctrine (I don’t get why they even quote them unless to point out their errors, but they seem to think if they got some things right, it’s o.k. to post the ‘good quotes’).

  50. Holly, John…

    I agree with drawing the line at the gospel. What makes the practical application of that principle toward specific individuals and their ministries difficult is the fact that many of them don’t have the issue firmly resolved themselves. The LHT reference I made is an example. They state the Free Grace view of repentance on their site, yet at the same time offer materials by people with the LS view of repentance. (Of course, these materials don’t deal with repentance itself, but with other issues.)

    I intend to contact LHT, Warren Smith, Roger Oakland and possibly a couple other LS-tending discernment types that I have supported in the past, regarding the LS/FG issue. There is an excellent doctoral dissertation by Dr. Charles Bing defending FG available online that deals with LS head-on. Perhaps reading that will knock down a legalistic wall or two.

  51. Chas, most of these ministries are fully aware of the false definition of repentance taught by ardent Lordship “salvationists”, and are sympathetic to it at least on some level. Otherwise they would know how insidious the doctrine is.

    Jack Weaver often interacted with ministries that were compromising with errant doctrine, in the hope that he might dissuade them from compromsing through association, and was usually treated dismissively.

    Using false teachers to make our points is as confusing (maybe more so) than not making the points at all. There is an old article, linked below, that addresses this issue:


    Ron Shea has an excellent document on repentance at Clear Gospel. It is linked below, along with a pertinent exempt:


    The phrase “repent of your sins,” is so embedded in Christian culture that it is hard to hear the word “repent” without mentally adding on the three words “from your sins.” And since the word “repent” is often associated with eternal salvation, this leads to further adding on, either mentally, or verbally from the pulpit, the words “to be saved” to the end of the sentence. Together, they form the greatest myth in the history of Christianity . . . “You must repent of your sins to be saved.”

    This belief is not only wrong, it is an error that threatens the eternal destiny of every man, woman and child on the planet. For it reduces the gospel of grace to a gospel of works. Scripture teaches with unmistakable clarity that a man is justified by faith apart from the works of the law, (Romans 3:28) and that to entrust one’s eternal salvation to one’s own obedience to God’s laws is to frustrate God’s offer of the gift of forgiveness of sins and eternal life, and make void the promise (Romans 4:4-5, 24; 11:6-7, Galatians 5:1-4).
    The command “repent from your sins to be saved” is wrong on any level, but because there is so much confusion surrounding the word “repentance,” multiple distinct errors surround the concept of repentance.

    1) Some believe one must have some transcendent experience of emotional remorse over one’s sins to be saved.

    2) Others believe that a sinner must actually begin living in obedience to the laws of God before they can be saved.

    3) Most frequently, however, the phrase “repent of your sins” is understood to mean that a lost sinner resolve (determine, internally promise, commit) to “turn from his sins” in order to be saved from hell.

    This first view necessarily means that one is beyond redemption simply because he suffers from autism, a schizotypal disorder, or some other medical disorder that suppresses personal emotion.

    The second view requires the actual works of the law to be saved. It is seldom taught to its logical conclusion simply because most people are not in the middle of some overtly sinful act at any one time. Although, by Biblical standards, it is doubtful that any of us have perfectly pure motives at any moment, few of us are engaged in an overtly sinful act very often. A drug dealer is not dealing drugs between deals.

    Because of this, the third view is the most pervasive form of confusion over repentance, and has truly become the staple of confused Christendom. It is a cancer on the Christian community. In this view, eternal salvation is not dependent on the performance of a work, but only the promise of future works. In the minds of those determined to adhere to salvation by works, this distinction supposedly allows the works of the law to be somehow added to the equation of salvation without annulling the doctrine of grace. Paul’s Epistle to the Romans would disagree. “For if they which are of the law be heirs, faith is made void, and the promise is of none effect.”

    At law, an exchange of promises is known as a bilateral contract. If you have already read the previous section on “Bilateral Contract Salvation” (also know as “Lordship Salvation), you will recognize that the third expression of “saving repentance” is nothing more than a specific form or expression of Bilateral Contract Salvation . . . “a promise for a promise.” The lost sinner “promises” future obedience in exchange for God’s “promise” of eternal life. This errant understanding of the term “repentance” is the most common and pervasive form of “Lordship Salvation” taught within Christendom throughout the world.

  52. Chas, yes, I read that in the past by Charlie Bing. Many of the guys who cite free grace compromise, some quote Spurgeon, some associate and rub elbows with others who they should not. Very difficult, as they are making a living by what they do, to not compromise for the ‘sake of their ministry’…

    I know others have contacted them before, and perhaps they might listen, you never know. Unfortunately my success rate has not been high :)

    In Christ, Holly

  53. Thanks for that quote John. I’m reminded of the typical comments I’ve gotten back from either teachers, authors, pastors or individuals who regarding other load-ship teachings, or false gospels have compromised. When I write them about their compromise, here are some of the comments I’ve received back believe it or not. (Please understand all the italicized comments are THEIRS not MINE).

    “Nobody’s got everything right”…

    “Just because I quoted him doesn’t mean I endorse all of his work”…

    “The quote I quoted, was a good quote, and I stand by it”.

    “Just take the good and learn from it”…

    “Don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater”…

    “Chew the meat and spit out the bones”…

    “Just because I quote Mao Tse Tung does not mean I am sending people to read him”….

    “Everybody in this world has something good to contribute, I have even quoted T.D. Jakes and Bill Johnson”….

    “Do you only take teaching from yourself?”

    “Are you the self-appointed watch dog?”

    “Blow it out your nose Jezebel, women are to be silent”….

    “Oh, you are one of those from that ‘new doctrine’, the ‘free grace camp'”…

    “We don’t like to limit ourselves by judging everyone else’s speck in their eye”….

    “Who DO you listen to then with such a narrow approach”?

    “You remind me of the cults who only allow certain people to teach”…

    Yes, believe it or not, all this and more I’ve heard from them…

  54. (I hoped everyone laughs out loud and number #11, it still makes me laugh)…

  55. Holly,

    I am a dolt; remember. next time number your comments so I don’t have to go back and recount to eleven!! :)

  56. Lol Preston, I wondered if someone was going to take me up on that, or just figure that the most ridiculous one belonged to the Achmed the dead terrorist dummy, sounded just like something he would say by the power of his ventriloquist.

  57. Holly,

    i am not sure i should say this, but i said what i said INSTEAD of saying something else.

    The something else would have been “only a Jezebel would not number her comments to make one go back and count”.

    So, which would have been better?

  58. Preston…. roflol, cut it out, that broke me up…. Loud belly laugh, needed it, that was too funny!

  59. Well, it’s been a few months since I stated my intention to contact LHT re: their views and the views of some of their most prominent authors about LS.

    I haven’t yet contacted LHT (though I still intend to), mainly because my knowledge of the issues involved is still inadequate. After reading more posts on the subject here and elsewhere, it has become apparent that John MacArthur is a leading culprit in the spread of LS. LHT has been faulted for quoting JMac in support of their views on certain non-LS issues, but when I did a search of “John MacArthur” on LHT’s blog, all I get are articles critical of him, particularly as to his naivete regarding the supposed “decline” of the Emerging Church and his favorable quotes of Dallas Willard. (So far I haven’t seen any articles on LHT critical of LS specifically.)

    Still looking, but I’m beginning to wonder if I’m in over my head.

  60. Chas, John MacArthur is a leader in the spread of LS. Yet, most other prominent and revered pastors were (are) as well. Among them, Charles Stanley, Charles Spurgeon, Roy Zuck, George Zeller, and Billy Graham.

    Some less ardent Lordship “salvation” proponents will insist that they believe in grace. But, often they insert merit or works in extremely subtle ways.

    Regarding Lighthouse Trails, you might find these old comments helpful:



  61. Chas – pretty likely they will get defensive about their quote being correct. I recently emailed a sound ministry about their quote by R.A. Torrey (who didn’t believe in eternal security). The young gentleman felt the quote itself was sound, although he agreed he knew of Torrey’s position. He didn’t respond back to my second response which was quite heartfelt regarding people being led astray. And how this wasn’t just about ‘nobody gets it all right all the time’. It’s about the gospel. And when a sound ministry quotes a man like him, even if the quote itself is ‘good’, people go right out to buy books etc. by them.

    It could be likely that the head of the ministry doesn’t know. I tried to reach him, it didn’t quite work out, and I admit I didn’t follow through much more than that. Some don’t feel the same way regarding the importance of not quoting men who are in error regarding the gospel.

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