Category Archives: Security of believers

The “Re-start” of Florida Bible College and the FBCAA are Apparently Sharing the Lie of Lordship “salvation.”

Circle CC Graham.jpg

By Jack Weaver (FBC Winter ’71)

This article should not have to be written and it pains me greatly to do so — but the truth must be told.

Florida Bible College (FBC) is my theological Alma Mater  (December 1971) and was one of the greatest Grace Bible Colleges ever founded. Recently however, some well meaning alumni have decided to re-start the college after it has been off the map for many years in a state of legal closure.

The Board of Florida Bible College Alumni Association (FBCAA) in their desire to re-start FBC seems to be taking a downward spiral. If we  check out the web site of the church which will house the new FBC campus home, (the Circle Community Christian Church (CCC)) we will see why. Unless CCC scrubs the site due to pressure, you will see a big splash-page advertisement promoting the new Billy Graham program, “My Hope For America.” Graham’s program promotes the same message he preached for 50 years, a pernicious “repent of sins for salvation”, “turn from sin ‘salvation’” and a “commitment ‘salvation’ (probation) messages. NONE of these are the Biblical Gospel of God’s Grace. It is nothing more than the modern iteration of a Biblically condemned “works” message. Such messages (adding works to God’s Grace)  and the person or group promoting it are accursed (i.e. banned) according to God’s Word. (Galatians 1:8-9)

In my note on 11/7/13 to Circle Community Church Pastor Ron Hoffmann (an FBCAA Board members), I asked for an explanation as to why he would promote Billy Graham and his false messages on his church web site. I have not heard from him as of today.

Here is the main text of my message to Pastor Hoffmann explaining my background with and interest in the original Florida Bible College in Hollywood, FL:

Pastor Hoffmann,I received the notice that FBC will be re-started in your church soon.

A little of my personal History, FYI:

  • Trusted Christ as my Savior at an FBC Christmas Concert, Grove Community church, December 15, 1964.
  • Served as a Deacon at Grove for many years and then an Elder at Grove and Florida Bible Church when we moved to Hollywood.
  • Served on the Board of Directors of FBC Hollywood, FL for several years in.
  • I graduated FBC, Hollywood, December, 1971.
  • Founded Palmetto Bible Church from which I am now retired at age 84.

I visited your CCC web site and frankly am appalled that your church, as a sponsor of the “new FBC,” would support and advertise an association with Billy Graham and his organization. Graham is known for his ecumenical evangelism, his false “turn from sin salvation” message, his cooperation and association with false teachers, churches and apostates. Graham Videos With Robert Schuller:
Billy Graham Denies Jesus Is The ONLY WAY To The Father

Robert Schuller And Billy Graham Speaking Wide Acceptance

If your church and FBC are running in this kind of Billy Graham crowd, their teaching and affiliation for expediency or whatever reason, you have departed from every vestige of free Grace teaching by which FBC was founded, existed and taught for years.
~~End of note to Hoffmann~~~~

There is NO assurance of Eternal Life in the Billy Graham message.

In contrast to the message at CCC/FBCAA, our friend Dr. Yankee Arnold and his church (formerly Dr. Hank Lindstrom’s Calvary Community Church in Tampa, FL), have already started classes for the officially incorporated Florida Bible College of  Tampa. This is a Biblically sound Grace Bible college.

It is sad to see the old FBC, once a Torch of Grace, shining the Gospel Light into a dark world, surrender to the “works” message of Graham. (through the CCC/FBCAA).

With thousands of compromising seminaries and Bible colleges teaching the Lordship “salvation” lie, why would anyone desire to multiply that number with just one more?

We can only pray that the the FBCAA Board will seek God’s Word and His Will, wake up to the Truth of God’s Grace and reject all vestiges of the terrible, false Lordship “salvation” message of Billy Graham and his ilk. Find out (Lordship Salvation Defined)

A few days ago I communicated by email with another of the FBCAA Board members who assured me he would “bring it up in the next Board meeting.” He did not express any concern one way or the other over the CCC/Graham website connection except to say, “Jack, I personally do not consider Billy Graham accurate or clear on the Gospel. Your question was to the board and I do not have authority to answer for them without consulting them.”

I pray for the general world-wide population of Florida Bible College’s Alumni — that they will be discerning and not be taken in by the FBCAA Board, who seem to exhibit little discernment in this case. I likewise pray that if this is all nothing more that a terrible error in judgment by the FBCAA Board and CCC, they will admit and correct it quickly.

ADDENDUM I: I just visited the CCC web site and the Graham splash screen has been scrubbed. That is why I saved a screen-shot of the CCC web site (above). There was no explanation why it was scrubbed. We will wait for either CCC or FBCAA to offer an explanation. (Jack)

ADDENDUM II: OOOOPS. One of our alert readers, D. Taylor reports that though the splash screen was scrubbed, the web page at CCC/FBCAA is still encouraging their members to attend the Graham presentation — and they invite their friends to attend so they can learn to share their faith. Billy Graham is a terrible example and certainly NOT an example of Biblical soul winning!!! We would encourage someone from both organizations, CCC/FBCAA to drop by and explain. (Jack)

The Gospel TRUTH for Which We Contend << Click

Encouraging News about the Good News (The Gospel). ExPreacherMan Reaching Around the World.

By Jack Weaver

Jesus Christ speaks:

“And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.” Mark 16:15

All of us here at our Oasis of Grace often express feeling of isolation because of a dearth of sound, Biblical church fellowship with other Believers. ExPreacherMan attempts to offer a small island of fellowship through abiding by an unwavering and uncompromising stand for the Gospel of our salvation  — by God’s Grace through Faith in Jesus Christ alone — and NOT by our works of our righteousness in order to gain or keep Eternal Life. (Ephesians 2:8-9) (Titus 3:5)

The Administrators at ExPreacherMan.com strive to speak the Truth of the Gospel and expose the lies of Lordship “salvation,” Calvinism, “turn from sin probation-ism” and all other subtle (and some not so subtle) teachings which contradict the simplicity that is in Christ and His Word.

This morning I was looking over ExPreacherMan web statistics for the past 365 days.

I was thrilled to see how the Lord has used ExPreacherMan to share Jesus Christ worldwide. Our visitors include many from Islamic countries, China, India, Russia and others in the spiritually darkest areas of the world. Of course we realize some few of these Views represent nefarious spammers who attempt to trade on our worldwide outreach. But, even so, we pray that when these folks do visit, they will read and believe the Gospel, the Truth of God’s Salvation. (John 3:16) Pray for them – God loves them too..

Look over these statistics. Realize that your comments and explanations of God’s Word circle the globe and land in isolated and dark countries (even the spiritually dark USA). We humbly realize one thing before the Lord — we have an awesome responsibility to share that Truth clearly, accurately and without error.

We thank each of you for your part in this outreach. We are approaching half a million total views of ExPreacherMan since our modest beginning six years ago. We are all volunteers who love and are thankful for our Savior and His Precious Gospel Message — His Free Gift of Eternal Life. The Glory and Praise are to the Lord God Almighty.

Good News – Eternal Life FREE

Statistics for the past 12 months alone, as of 10/25/2013. ExP reached 184 different countries in the world.

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Mariella, Sadly “Repenting” Herself to Death – Literally.

By Jack Weaver

Just recently I experienced an example of a pitiful case of non-Calvinist “perseverance” while witnessing to my Audiologist. It is an awful object lesson showing an ignorance of scripture and “following the leader” to hell:

Mariella, my Audiologist, is a sweet, early 30s, young Latino lady. I pray she reads this and “changes her mind.” On my first visit several months ago I shared the Gospel and a tract.. She said, “Oh, you are a Christian, here read mine.” Her tract was titled, “The Grace That Saves.” Great Title!! Since I could not read the fine print, I took it optimistically believing the title may be a hint of Biblical contents.

When we returned home I magnified the tract. It was distributed by Fellowship Tract League. They advertise hundreds of different tracts in hundreds of languages. It sounded good until the “salvation” prayer. Very dangerous false doctrine.

The obvious errors are highlighted in bold.

Please pray this prayer or one similar to it: Dear Heavenly Father, I know I am a sinner and need your forgiveness. I believe that Jesus died for my sin. [1] I am willing to turn from sin. I now [2] ask Jesus Christ to come into my heart and life as my personal Saviour. I am willing, by God’s grace, to follow and obey Christ as the Lord of my heart and life. Amen.

[3] Jesus is knocking at the door of your heart. (Revelation 3:20) [3] Will you let Him in?”

[1] The Bible NEVER tells us we must be willing to turn from sin to have eternal life. That is a lie!!

[2] The Bible NEVER says to ask Jesus Christ to come into your heart and life as your personal Saviour to have eternal life. That is a lie!!

[3]  The Bible NEVER asks anyone to “let Jesus into our heart and life in order to have eternal life. That is a lie!! The heart does not have a “door.” That whole statement is a gross misrepresentation of the verse  Revelation 3:20 – which is plea by Jesus, asking for renewed FELLOWSHIP and to dine with the seven last days churches listed in Revelation Chapter Three.

Two weeks later on my next visit I handed her a great booklet illustrating that Salvation is a free gift, (“The Gift,” by Dr. Richard Seymour). She promised me she would read it and make notes which we could discuss. I asked her why she felt that God’s gift of salvation by Grace required her to turn from sin in order to have eternal life. Her answer, “I must repent continually to be ready.” Sadly, we had to depart to make room for another patient.

On our next visit I questioned Mariella further. Amazingly she said that she repents continuously all day long and before she goes to sleep at night. Then she asked me in somewhat broken English, “My father wanted me to ask you if you believe in ‘once saved, always saved?’”

I answered, “Of course, Jesus is The Savior. He alone saves eternally with no works on our part!! We cannot add anything to His work on the cross.” She answered, “My father says I cannot accept your booklet because it has false doctrine and is against the Bible.”

I was flabbergasted. As we left, she said, “I must repent, repent and repent all the time.” I asked “What does repent mean to you?” She said, “Turn from my sin, be sorry for any sins and bad thoughts, etc, etc.” As we departed, I left her with this thought, “I am so sorry you are not sure of eternal life, that you must torture yourself with continually  ‘repenting.’ Just remember, Jesus is The Savior. He alone SAVES!! Biblical repenting is simply changing your mind about Jesus being your Savior — and not your works.” She answered, “Yes but I must always be ‘ready’ by repenting.

This is a pitiful example of a person believing the false doctrine of repentance and turning it into her own personal “perseverance until the end,” and a father who is teaching his daughter the direct “works” path to hell.

I found her church in the Internet. It is a Latino, Charismatic, holy-roller, “healer,” works preaching mega church in Hialeah, FL. Terrible.

Please pray for Mariella that she may read this and believe the Gospel in order to have the peace that passes all understanding by trusting that her salvation is by Grace through Faith in Jesus Christ alone.

Eternal Life — FREE- No Charge!! << Click

Dr. Tom Cucuzza’s Collection – NEW!!

Friends of ExP,

We are consolidating Dr. Tom Cucuzza’s Collection of works on the ExPreacherMan website header. We have posted all of his currently available works, his Gospel Video and wonderful PDF doctrinal files. We will post more as he makes them available.

We have just received Tom’s NEW color PDF, “Be Sure You Are Going to Heaven!” © (A beautiful color cover – suitable for an attractive Gospel Witnessing Handout.)

Please click here >> Dr. Cucuzza’s Collection where you may download the NEW article\handout plus his other works and Gospel video. Together for Souls!!

A Lordship Salvationist’s Prayer for His Prodigal Son

By our friend, John

(Note: the following article is a PARODY of Lordship “salvation” through the lens of a hypothetical father, who believes in LS, as he prays for his son, who has received eternal life by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone. It is meant to demonstrate that Lordship “salvation” is not just another slant on the Gospel. Rather it is disbelief in the Gospel. Each of the false Lordship “salvation” beliefs indicated in the prayer is referenced, with explanatory footnotes provided).

Heavenly Father, I come to you today heavy-hearted. I asked my son today why he wasn’t going to church anymore. He told me it was because he hadn’t found a church in his community that he was comfortable with.

I asked what he meant, since there are plenty of Southern Baptist churches (SBC) in his area. He responded that my church (and the SBC) teaches a false gospel of works that can’t save anyone. He was raised in SBC churches, and I can’t fathom who ever put that idea into his head.

So, I asked what he meant by “false gospel of works.” He said that salvation is “by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone” (he quoted Ephesians 2:8-9). He seemed to think that most churches add something to that – such as “turn from sins for salvation”, or “surrender your life to Christ for salvation.” He said some churches seem to be free grace, but then look to changed behavior as evidence of salvation – which is, by implication, teaching salvation by works.

My son said that those add-ons had been a barrier to him understanding the gospel and accepting Christ. He said that now that he has become a believer in Christ alone for eternal life, he doesn’t want to have anything to do with churches that “frustrate grace” (he referred to Galatians 2:21: “I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain”).

Father, I know that Christ died for my sins, was buried and was raised from the dead. That’s the gospel! A lot of unsaved people believe that too, but they’ve never repented of their sins, nor surrendered to the Lordship of Christ. They’ve never trusted in Christ to change their lives.1 Like James 2:19 says – “even the demons believe, and they tremble”!2

I repented of my sins, surrendered my life to Christ, and accepted Christ as my Savior when I was in high school. I have tried to live a life consistent with my faith. I know I haven’t been perfect, but I’ve tried to be a faithful steward of everything with which you have entrusted me – including raising my children in a Christian home, making sure they attended church regularly, and teaching them the plan of salvation that I was taught.

Father, my son made his profession of faith in Christ when he was a child. He was always a difficult child. He told me when he was in his twenties that he “gave his life to Jesus.”3 I was overjoyed, but his commitment to Christ didn’t last very long. I know he has drifted, and has not ever really been a consistent churchgoer. Father, only You know whether my son ever truly surrendered his life to You, sincerely repented of his sins, and trusted in Christ.

Father, my prayer to you today is this: I pray that you would deliver my son from his deception. I pray that you will convict him of his error. I pray that you will reveal to him that there is more to receiving eternal life than simply believing the gospel and accepting Christ as Savior.4 That you would let him know that there is no eternal life without discipleship.5 I pray that you will convince him that repentance in salvation includes at least a willingness to turn from his sins.6

Father, I pray that my precious son will turn from his mistaken belief that salvation is by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone.7

Amen

Explanatory footnotes:

1 Repenting of one’s sins”, “surrendering one’s life to Christ”, and “trusting in Christ to change one’s life” are not conditions for receiving eternal life. (Romans 5:8 Romans 6:23)

2 James 2:19 is often used by Lordship “salvationists” as a proof-text that believing in Jesus is not enough for receiving eternal life. This is not true. Demons are not eligible for receiving salvation, nor does this passage say that demons have faith in Christ.

3 One who is clear on the Gospel would know that expressions such as “giving one’s life to Christ” are not a proper response to the Gospel. The only proper response to the Gospel is belief. (John 3:16)

4 The son is not in error or deceived. The father is. There is absolutely nothing more to receiving eternal life than believing the Gospel and accepting Christ as Savior.

5 Following Jesus in discipleship will not result in eternal life, nor is a discipleship a condition for receiving eternal life.

6 “Willingness to turn from one’s sins” is not a requirement for receiving eternal life.

7 The son is not mistaken in his belief. The father is. Salvation is by Grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone. If one is not saved that way, he is not saved at all. By trying to add to the finished work of Christ, one is not trusting in Christ as his Savior, but only as his helper. (Ephesians 2:8-9, Titus 3:5)

Wiki-Heresies Debut – Exposing Lordship “salvation” In All of Its Vagaries

We at ExPreacherMan take great care in proclaiming the Truth of the Gospel of Salvation by Grace Alone through Faith Alone in Jesus Christ Alone. We know the doctrine of Salvation by God’s Grace alone is Biblically verifiable and true. (Ephesians 2:8-9).

Such Great Salvation is absolutely independent of any Biblical mandate for a performance of “good works,” before, during or after a person makes that one-time decision to trust Jesus Christ as Savior. That is Grace.

Of course, every believer in Jesus Christ SHOULD walk in good works, as taught in many, many places in God’s Word  (Ephesians 2:10), but there is no redemptive power or benefit by doing in good works. God’s Salvation is a FREE Gift, by Grace alone in Jesus Christ alone, without work, effort or merit on man’s part. Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shall be saved..”

Therefore, we at ExP have created a Page whereby our readers may visit and browse a list, of teachers, preachers, writers and organizations who pervert the Biblical doctrine of God’s Free Grace. We include  descriptions, evidence and (in most cases) links to those whom we discuss.

The link has a permanent place as the last line of several links on our Header at ExPreacherMan. It is easy to find. We invite you to visit:

Wiki-Hweresies << Click

Always remember, Eternal Life is a FREE Gift

Lordship “Salvation” Icon Kirk Cameron, Promotes Calvin’s Geneva Bible and Teams Up With Liberty University.

CameronKirk Cameron

By Jack Weaver

If we thought things could not get any “weirder,” we see that Lordship “Salvationist” (LS) and teeny-bopper Idol, Kirk Cameron is:

  1. Promoting the sale of John Calvin’s terrible Geneva Bible on TV and news web site like World Net Daily.
  2. Convocation speaker and now teaming up with Jerry Falwell’s Liberty (“Christian”) University (LU) in starting a “Christian Film Production” course of study. But this should come as no surprise since LU’s Statement of Faith basically agrees with Cameron and reads: “We affirm that each person can be saved only through the work of Jesus Christ, through repentance of sin and by faith alone in Him as Savior. The believer is declared righteous, born again by the Holy Spirit, turned from sin, and assured of heaven.”
  3. Teaming with Calvinist LSer, John MacArthur on YouTube about their unbiblical idea of the way of Salvation. I’ll not provide the link — but they both agreed that total submission, heart, mind, soul and body to the Lordship of Christ “is the only way of salvation.” Total apostasy!!!
  4. Cameron has been a long-time friend and compatriot of apostate “evangelist” Ray Comfort. We have commented many times about the terrible doctrine of Comfort. Here is one comment by our friend Holly Garcia: Link:>> Comfort- 2013/07/23 at 6:11 pm If there was ever any doubt about Comfort and Cameron preaching an accursed message — this will dispel it. You may follow the link for further excellent comments from our readers.

Friends, we as Free Grace Believers, must remain constantly vigilant in the face of “sweet, charismatic double-talkers” who pervert the simplicity that is in Christ Jesus:

“But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.” 2 Corinthians 11:3

That time has come. We who know the Truth must preach the Word, in context, the Gospel of the Good news of the Death, Burial and Resurrection of our Savior (1 Corinthians 15:1-8) as His all sufficient provision for anyone’s salvation by Grace through Faith in Jesus Christ alone!!! (Ephesians 2:8-9) No more, no less!!

The TRUTH of Salvation

Southern Baptist Convention and J.D.Greear Promote: “The Posture of Lordship Salvation”

False

Lordship Salvation: The Devil is in the Details

By: our dear friend, John

A friend of mine recently brought me a parenting magazine he had picked up from his Southern Baptist church. He pointed me to an article entitled “Should We Stop Asking Jesus into Our Hearts?” The article was a series of excerpts from the book of the same title; written by J.D. Greear, lead pastor of the Summit Church in Raleigh, NC.

In reading the article, I was reminded of a couple of old adages.

The first adage isthe devil speaks with a forked tongue.” Greear aids and abets the evil one by mixing Biblical truths with his LS-slanted opinions and quotes from other shameless promoters of LS, including Charles Haddon Spurgeon.

Consider the following excerpt:

In his parable about the different types of soil, Jesus spoke of a group who heard his word and made an initial, encouraging response of belief, only to fade away over time. These are those, Jesus explained, who hear the gospel and respond positively to it—pray the prayer, walk the aisle, get baptized, or do whatever new converts in your church do. They remain in the church for a period of time. But they do not endure when the sun of persecution comes out and will not in the end be saved.”

Jesus did not say that these people “will not in the end by saved.” Those are Greear’s words, and they reflect an LS orientation. That LS orientation is corroborated by the following quote, which reveals Greear’s belief in the Calvinist/LS false doctrine of “perseverance of the saints”:

The apostle John almost always talks about “believing” in the present tense because it is something we do continually, not something we did once in the past…The posture begins at a moment, but it persists for a lifetime.”

Which brings us to our second adage:The devil is in the details.”

Like virtually all Lordship “Salvationists”, Greear pays lip service to belief in the Gospel, but then betrays that belief by what else he says.

First, the lip service:

Salvation is not given because you prayed a prayer correctly, but because you have leaned the hopes of your soul on the finished work of Christ.”

Then, the betraying twist:

Repentance means understanding that Jesus is Lord and that you have lived in cosmic treason to him and reversing your direction based on that.”

Greear’s definition of repentance to include “reversing your direction” is code for turning from sins for salvation, making Christ Lord of your life for salvation, and so on. He repeatedly uses the term “posture” toward Christ (I counted at least six) as a way of expressing this flawed belief system. The word posture is never used in the New Testament.

As a follow-up, I read Trevin Wax’s interview with Greear, from January 31, 2013. Following is a telling quote:

Disciples of Jesus are the ones who are saved; not those who go through a ritual.”

And from Mark Driscoll’s interview with Greear from March 26, 2013:

“…I would ask them if their present posture is one of submission to Christ’s Lordship and trust in his finished work. If so, they are saved, even if they don’t remember the prayer or the moment they got into that posture.

Second, I would ask them to consider whether the signs of eternal life are present in them. As John explains so thoroughly in 1 John, conversion does not bring sinless perfection, but it does begin to make fundamental changes in the human heart.”

Greear reveals, with these comments, his errant belief that discipleship and evidence of a changed life are requirements for salvation.

My friend who brought me Greear’s article did not buy into it. But, the article is indicative of the kinds of false information that millions of people are being fed in their churches every week. In fact, Greear has received glowing recommendations from a veritable “who’s who” of Lordship “salvationists”, and is a prominent leader in the Southern Baptist Convention.

We must pray for those who preach the gospel faithfully, and be vigilant in exposing false doctrine and false teachers.

God’s Guarantee of ETERNAL Life << Clivk

John MacArthur Speaks on Predestination: A Rebuttal

John MacArthur Speaks on Predestination Question:

A Grace-Based Rebuttal

Source of the MacArthur Interview: Shepherdsconference.org, 2010, Media, General Session 5, an Interview with John MacArthur
Johnny Mac
Introductory Comments:
Generally speaking, when I review an article or interview, I will select several salient statements upon which to comment. This methodology usually works well, but, at times individuals have made the accusation that the writer’s or speaker’s statements have been misquoted or taken out of context. In order to head off this dodge, I have chosen to print the MacArthur interview on the subject, “The Question of Predestination,” in its entirety. My brief, clearly-labeled comments or responses to MacArthur’s open questions and statements will be inserted throughout the text of the interview; they will be in [brackets].

Note: To view the article in its entirety, go to:

http://califgracer.wordpress.com/

John MacArthur on Predestination:

A Grace-Based Rebuttal

Source of the MacArthur Interview: Shepherdsconference.org, 2010, Media, General Session 5, an Interview with John MacArthur

[Interspersed with bracketed comments]

Question posed to MacArthur:

“Why witness? How do we tell people that God loves them and that Jesus Christ did not die for them? Or do we tell them that?
[Inserted comment: A great question posed to John MacArthur. I have often myself asked Calvinists a similar question: "If God's got it all slated as to who gets to go to heaven and who must go to hell, and the individual has abolutely no say in the matter, then, WHY HAVE MISSIONS?" To date, I have never heard anyone give a logical biblical answer to that question. Let's see whether John MacArthur will be the first] . . . .

MacArthur answers:

Well, you tell them whatever the Bible tells you to tell them. And the Bible tells you to go into the world and preach the gospel to every creature. That’s what you do because that’s what the Scripture says.”

[Inserted Comment: Right so far, John: Mark 16:15. And verse 16 tells why Jesus commanded the preaching of the gospel (the death, burial and resurrection of Christ, 1 Cor. 15:1-8)---so people would believe and become saved (cf. Acts 16:30-31); he also warns that those who refuse to believe (right through the point of death) will be lost (cf. John 3:18, John 5:40, 47). Christ Jesus would never command something be preached to the world if that proclamation had no possibility of efficacious results, i.e., if the individual had no ability to respond to the message in belief (Calvinists teach "Total Inability," the "T" of the Calvinist acronym "TULIP," that is, that men and women are completely dead in their sins and have absolutely no ability to respond in believing faith to the gospel of Christ Jesus). In view of the multitude of verses that call people to believe and thus be saved, e.g., John 3:16-18; Acts 16:30-31; John 5:24; John 6:29, 40; John 7:37-38 (ALL are welcome); John 11:25-26, this (Calvinist) teaching is UNBIBLICAL and illogical.]

MacArthur continues: “Any tension you have between that and the doctrine of divine election and predestination; any tension you feel in those areas, I feel. I feel the same tension. I ask the same question. I don’t know that there’s some kind of quick answer to the question. I am, however, happy to concede that God can resolve all things that I can’t (crowd laughter and applause). Really! I don’t expect the view and you shouldn’t expect of me to be able to unscrew the ‘unscrutable’ [inscrutable?]. Uh, you, you, really don’t think that I’m going to solve all the vast theological dilemmas that have existed since the Scriptures were penned. [Interviewer inserts, ‘Actually, some people do.’ (crowd laughter; then MacArthur continues)] Ya; the best answer to this question is, ‘My brother, I feel your pain’ (crowd laughter).”

[Inserted Comment: Really, Dr. MacArthur? The best answers that you can give are, "I feel the same tension," "I ask the same question," "I feel your pain"? Might it be that these issues are "painful" and "unresolvable" only because you view the Bible and the gospel through skewed Calvinist lenses? Christ called us, not to live in tension, anguish and fear, but in trust and rest in his finished work on our behalf. Matthew 11:28 "Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest." ]

Mac Arthur: “I, uh, I’m not here to give you an answer, but, I will tell you this: I do not believe that Jesus died for nobody. I believe he died for somebody. And I believe he died specifically for those who would believe in him, and those who believe in him are those who are regenerated by the Holy Spirit based upon the eternal sovereign electing purpose of God. I think his atonement was an actual one, not a potential one. I don’t think that it was a general one; I think it was a specific one. I think it was a real death for sin. The issue here is the nature of the atonement.”

[Inserted Comment: Wow, Dr. MacArthur, you are speaking at a leadership conference at a question and answer session, and you say, "I'm not here to give you an answer"? Let's look at some of your statements: "I do not believe that Jesus died for nobody. I believe he died for somebody." Response to MacArthur: The Bible declares that Jesus died for everyone, for the world: John 6:33 "The bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto THE WORLD." John 3:16 "For God so loved THE WORLD, that he gave his only begotten Son, that WHOSOEVER BELIEVETH in him should not perish, but have eternal life." 1 John 2:2 "And he is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for the sins of THE WHOLE WORLD." 2 Peter 3:9 "The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some me count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, NOT WILLING THAT ANY SHOULD PERISH but that ALL should come to repentance." 1 Timothy 2:3-6 "For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; Who WILL HAVE ALL MEN TO BE SAVED, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; Who GAVE HIMSELF A RANSOM FOR ALL, to be testified in due time."

Yet, sadly, NOT ALL THE WORLD WILL RECEIVE his gracious gift (Ephesians 2:8-9) of salvation: John 3:36 (which clearly demonstrates man's free will to accept or reject God's gracious gift of salvation through believing in his Son, cf. Matthew 23:37; John 3:18) "He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life; and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him."]

To view the entire article, go to:

http://califgracer.wordpress.com/

Lordship Salvation: Counterfeit Currency Exchange

counterfeit

By our friend, John

 Matthew 21:12-13:  And Jesus went into the temple of God, and cast out all them that sold and bought in the temple, and overthrew the tables of the moneychangers, and the seats of them that sold doves, And said unto them, It is written, My house shall be called the house of prayer; but ye have made it a den of thieves.

Jesus was dismayed that His house had been turned into a place of business, including the exchange of currencies.  He overturned the moneychangers’ tables and referred to them as thieves.

Those of us who have traveled to different countries are familiar with having to convert our money into local currency in order to buy things in that country.  We hear about the interactions of different currencies in the world of finance, and the impact of those interactions on global trade and the economy.

In God’s economy, there is only one currency that will pay for our sins:  the blood of Jesus.

Romans 3:24-26:  Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.

But the moneychangers continue to ply their trade, trying to convince people that other currencies will take away sin and save us.  In God’s economy, currencies other than the blood of Christ are useless counterfeit.

In his sermon of June 9, 2013, entitled “The Enemy is Stalking Us”, Tom Cucuzza put it this way:

And so what does Satan do?

He deals with counterfeit messages.  He deals in messages that sound good or even close to the real thing.  But folks, if they’re not the real thing it’s false.  It’s counterfeit.  It’s from the devil.

And the closer he can get to the real plan of salvation and yet not be the plan of salvation more people will be deceived into that.

So, what are some of the more common counterfeits being offered by the Lordship “salvationists” today?

Repent of your sins to be saved.  Follow Christ to be saved.  Forsake your sins to be saved.  Count the cost.  Put Christ on the throne of your life to be saved.  Surrender your life to Christ for salvation.  Give your life to Christ for salvation.  Allow God to change your life to be saved, and on and on.

So, are the false teachers promoting these various and sundry counterfeit currencies today like the moneychangers that Christ drove out of the temple?

John 10:1:  Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber.

Notice that Jesus uses the term “thief” to refer to anyone who tries to enter into salvation in any other way than through Him – the same term that He used to refer to the moneychangers.

As Christians, we are the temple of Christ.  We must not let these thieves have any place in our temple.

Again, from Tom Cucuzza:

People say:  “well I listen to this guy, I listen to that preacher, and boy what they were saying, it was fabulous.  Pastor, why are you down on them?”

I’m down on them because they are preaching a false gospel that will not save.

Praise God for the truth they do say.  But, I’m not going to praise God for the error that they promote.  And you shouldn’t either.  You shouldn’t either.

You be careful folks of what you take in.  What you listen to.  What you read.  You better be careful!

Here is the True Gospel of Salvation!! << Click

An Admitted Lordship “Salvationist” Visits ExPreacherMan and Asks Questions

By Jack Weaver

A gentleman named Ryan addressed us here at ExPreacherMan by direct email, asking some interesting questions about our Biblical beliefs. With his permission we  print his letter anonymously as an article post. We have numbered his questions to make answering by number more orderly and have made our comments in between his questions.

We urge our discerning readers to kindly answer Ryan’s questions from a Biblical point of view. We have emboldened some phrases for emphasis.

Ryan, we appreciate your note. After reading your questions it seems, as you say, you are indeed a Lordship Salvationist (LS) and like most LSers, also a devotee of Reformed/Calvinist teachings. (Ref. question 6).

Ryan’s Note:

Ryan: Hello, I have spent some time reading various topics on here. I would probably be considered an LSer.
 

1.) Ryan: I think we agree that Christ’s righteousness is given to us once we believe in Christ as our savior.

ExP: We here at ExP know that any believer in Jesus Christ has His Righteousness imputed the very moment he makes the personal decision to trust by Grace alone through Faith in Jesus Christ alone as Savior. He is secure forever, and it is “not by works of righteousness which we have done” before, during or after believing in Jesus. Period. (Titus 3:5)

2.) Ryan: Where I am trying to find an answer on your beliefs, and where we may disagree, is on how we can have a hint of who is a follower of Jesus or not.

ExP: It is not possible to identify a believer by his behavior. We would be more likely to accept that a person is a believer in Jesus by his clear words expressing that his salvation is dependent completely by Grace through their faith decision in Jesus Christ as Savior. There are many who call themselves “followers of Christ.” Such as Roman Catholic, Baptist, Charismatic, Calvinist, Methodist, Church of Christ and “Christian” religions of every description, yet those mentioned here, by their doctrinal statements, are not depending on Christ’s finished work on the cross for their salvation. These religions add good works to the salvation message. Example: Catholics are some of the nicest, cleanest living, most charitable, good works folks I know yet they do not trust Jesus Christ alone as their Savior. They trust their church, the Pope, their charity, Mary and the priests as their means of salvation.

3.) Ryan: I don’t want to be the Judge, but doesn’t the new creature show himself as sanctification takes place?

ExP: The new creation or creature should show — but may not. Visible evidence is not a requirement for salvation. Every Believer has two natures, the new man and the old man, the righteous nature and the sin nature — and as Paul (whom we KNOW was a believer), said: If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good.  Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.  For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not. [19] For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do.  Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.  I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me. (Romans 7:16-21).
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4.) Ryan: Shouldn’t we speak warning (not condemnation) to those who don’t show change in their lives?
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ExP: We assume you are speaking of one who has trusted Jesus as his Savior. If so, we should teach him God’s Grace. Let him understand that 2 Corinthians 5:14 advises us that it is the Love of Christ that constrains [compels] us to live the Christian life and to walk in good works, not primarily by threats and warnings. Part of that teaching can be warnings if needed. Such teaching should never be a threat of loss of salvation (such as Chan, MacArthur, et al) but an understanding of God’s grace filled discipline to a believer.
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5.) Ryan: Isn’t Jesus Lord over all…even the devils?
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ExP: Yes, as we see in Scripture, “The word which God sent unto the children of Israel, preaching peace by Jesus Christ: (he is Lord of all:)” Acts 10:36.  Jesus IS Lord of all, but without Christ one cannot submit to His Lordship, they are alienated and lost. Certainly one must believe that Jesus is the Lord God Almighty in the Flesh in order to trust Him as Savior, and in doing so they remain under His Lordship — whether they are obedient to Him or not. A lack of obedience and of “following” Jesus’ Lordship does not negate one’s salvation. Fellowship, “Yes” but salvation, NO!
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6). Ryan: I agree it’s God’s gift to us to cause us to believe and repent by the power of the HS. Isn’t this considered salvation…when we trust in Him as our salvation? 
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ExP: You said it is God’s gift to us to “cause us to believe and repent.” We vehemently disagree with that statement which is the  Reformed/Calvinist notion, from the “I” in the T.U.L.I.P, “Irresistible grace.” That is NOT a Biblical teaching. God’s Grace has appeared to all men and every man/woman has a will and a choice to either believe or reject Jesus Christ. (Titus 2:11) God’s Holy Spirit convicts every person (the world) of sin, righteousness and judgment John 16:8, and Jesus Christ draws every man unto Himself.  “And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me.” John 12:32. Some will believe, some will refuse — but all have a free will choice.
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 7). Ryan: Lastly, wouldn’t our lives change as we re-direct who or what we are trusting in?
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ExP: A believer’s life SHOULD (not must) (Ephesians 2:10) show a change and he SHOULD walk in good works as he learns and is obedient to God’s Word. But that is dependent upon his free will and choice. We make a decision to believe in Jesus to have eternal life and then afterward we SHOULD make a decision/choose to serve Him. I understand your concern for those who might use as an excuse, “I believe in Jesus — now leave me alone.” Please understand this wisdom from a friend just yesterday, “Separate your concerns for a lack of behavior, works or service from the message of the FREE grace Gospel of Christ. The two doctrines are completely apart. (Romans 11:6) We decide to be saved by God’s Grace through Faith in Jesus Christ alone, then we decide to serve or work for Him — (or not).

Ryan asks: Please, just a little light on this would be appreciated…or a link that would help answer this for me. I don’t want to be divisive and am only asking for your input seeing that you are someone who is trying to be faithful to the gospel.

Ryan, Click on these Links:

Dr Tom Cucuzza, Secure Forever (E-book or hard back)

Eternal Life For You

Biblical Hope

Gospel Video; Cucuzza

Clear Gospel Campaign

Freed From the Bondage of Lordship Salvation and Religions

OUR REGRETS, by Jack Weaver:

We regret to say that the lady who was so excited about being freed from the bondage of Lordship Salvation and gave us permission to print her testimony here at ExPreacherMan has requested that her article be removed.

It is a tragic shame but she has succumbed to false teachers and no longer believes what she originally wrote about her salvation. She cannot get clear in her mind the true Biblical meaning of the word “repent,” A CHANGE OF MIND, in spite of all the scripture many of us have shared with her in personal communications.

We request that you pray diligently for her in her search, that she will heed the Truth of God’s Word and salvation by Grace and not by works of any individual righteousness.

Titus 3:5
Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;”

Jesus alone is The Savior and He alone has done all the saving for us by His Death, Burial and Resurrection, apart from our good works. He tells us that we appropriate that salvation by simply believe in Him — that He is the ALL SUFFICIENT SAVIOR. (John 3:16-18)

God’s Guarantee of Eternal Life!! << Click

Free Grace Gospel Tract: Let’s Build it Together

saved by grace

Greetings Free Grace Friends!

This is a new project which I trust will be instructive, beneficial and a good way to demonstrate the Truth of the Free Grace Gospel as opposed to the Folly of other “gospels.” Anyone can participate, but the administration reserves the right to review and possibly edit some of the comments for appropriate content, grammar or length.

Here are the rules:

There will be two categories listed in the tract. The first will be comprised of genuine presentations of the Free Grace Gospel of the Bible. The second category will be made up of poor or false presentations of statements which are commonly referred to as, “the gospel.” Please keep your statements BRIEF (one or two lines per category maximum) as this process is meant to assemble an easy-to-read free-flowing tract. Brief Scripture references or Scripture quotations are fine (King James refs. preferred). Please limit your comments to one entry per category per day. This restriction will allow lots of people to take part in the project. As the entries come in, they will be checked as indicated above, and, if appropriate, they will then be added to the tract. Well, that’s about it for now. Thanks, in advance, for participating. Here are the two categories: “Proper, Biblical, Free Grace Presentations of the Gospel,” and, “Inappropriate, False or Erroneous Presentations of What is Called, “the gospel”

Proper, Biblical, Free Grace Presentations of the Gospel:

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

Ephesians 2:8-9
“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.”

Jesus Christ was fully man yet fully God. He lived a sinless life and died on a cross, shedding his blood in the process, as a payment for our sin. It was only by a perfect sacrifice that our sin could be forgiven. Jesus died, was buried, and rose again. He is in heaven and is the only means by which man can be saved from the penalty of sin and thereby escape eternal damnation.
Do you realize that you are a sinner that stands condemned before God? Rom 3:23 Do you understand that Christ died for you? Will you this very moment trust Christ alone to be your Savior? The Bible says that whosoever believes on Him (Christ) shall have everlasting life. John 3:16.

“Trust in Christ alone for your Salvation and in nothing else.”

We don’t “do” anything to be saved. It is a free gift. We only need to BELIEVE!

Shorthand equation…: Eternal Salvation = Faith + Nothing

There really is no other way to obtain salvation than this:

John 3:14 And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up:
John 3:15 That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
John 3:16 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.
John 3:17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
John 3:18 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.

(true) Acts 16;30-31 “what Must I do to be saved? Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ . . .

True: “We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, as a representative and substitutionary sacrifice, and that all who believe in Him are justified on the ground of His shed blood.”

Genuine:
Romans 6:23(NKJV) For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
“Our salvation was infinitely costly to God, but it is absolutely free to us.” Quote by Dave Branon.

1Pe 1:18 Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers;
1Pe 1:19 But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot: Eph 2:8-9 For by grace… There is no price that we can add to obtain salvation. Christ paid the price. There is no additional price to be paid on our part. We must simply put out faith in Christ alone to save us.

Statements Below are Inappropriate, False or Erroneous Presentations of What is Called, “the gospel” (again, these statements below are NOT the true gospel of the Bible).

“Turn or burn”

“Faith sandwich” – works on the outside, faith in Christ on the inside. Can also be served “open face”. Example:
Works – Repent of your sins
Faith – Place your faith in Jesus
Works – Surrender to Jesus as Lord

A sampling of “the MacArthur” plan of salvation (for the full message, see: Comments, Holly’s list of MacArthur sayings). Sample: “Becoming a Christian is not easy. It’s hard. Another way to say all that is that the Kingdom opens up to those who seek with all their hearts. You’re not going to sleep your way into the Kingdom. The Kingdom requires earnest endeavor, untiring energy . . .”

Two false gospel quotes: 1. Calvinism is the Gospel. (Sermons, Vol. 1, p. 50) Spurgeon . . . . 2. I believe that Christ came into the world not to put men into a salvable state, but into a saved state. Not to put them where they could save themselves, but to do the work in them and for them, from first to last. (Sermons, Vol. 3, p. 34) Spurgeon

Inappropriate expressions I hear a lot:

“Count the cost”

“Forsake your life”

There are so many mountains in your life, so many obstacles in your life; so many things in your life that seek to derail you−to stop you. And they’re going to stay there because some of those things just don’t go away by counseling. They go away by falling on your face before God until He delivers you. ~Paul Washer

So I would like to add that the notion of “praying a sinner’s prayer” or “asking Jesus into your heart” is one example of a false or faulty gospel.

Erroneous faith + works analogy: Salvation is like a row boat. One oar is faith. The other oar is works. If one uses one oar only, the boat goes in circles. If both oars are used, the boat travels in a straight path to its destination (i.e., heaven). But we are not going to Heaven in a rowboat. Rather, we are carried to heaven on the shoulders of the good Shepherd, Jesus Christ!

(Illustration above based on a Dr. Harry Ironside sermon)

False quotes:

• “Christ did not die to forgive sinners who go on treasuring anything above seeing and savoring God… If we don’t want God above all things, we have not been converted by the gospel.”
― John Piper, God Is the Gospel: Meditations on God’s Love as the Gift of Himself

“Gospel repentance is tapping into the joy of our union with Christ in order to weaken our need to do anything contrary to God’s heart.” [@DailyKeller]
“You are not saved by love, joy, peace…You are saved by faith not fruit, BUT you are never saved by fruitless faith.” [@dailykeller]

And finally today, one more head scratcher from Spurgeon:

“Avoid a sugared gospel as you would shun sugar of lead. Seek the gospel which rips up and tears and cuts and wounds and hacks and even kills, for that is the gospel that makes alive again. And when you have found it, give good heed to it. Let it enter into your inmost being. As the rain soaks into the ground, so pray the Lord to let his gospel soak into your soul.” Spurgeon

(false statements )-faith alone justifies but the faith that justifies is never alone; also salvation is free but it can cost you everything (these two are not for the tract but I couldn’t resist mentioning them—kept them in, they are worth mentioning)

(this is a common tract prayer) believe in Jesus, feel sorry for your sins and turn or be willing to turn from your sins etc, etc.

More false definitions of even what faith is, by W.E. Vine as quoted by Macarthur in “the Gospel according to Jesus”:

Faith consists of “a firm conviction…a personal surrender…[and] conduct inspired by such surrender” (173-174). According to this definition, faith includes conduct, that is, works. Faith is conviction, surrender, and conduct.

False: “We believe that all who receive by faith alone, Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, and who confess Him as such before their fellow men, are born again of the Holy Spirit and thereby become children of God.”

Here was one on FB: Instead of hugging and accepting a sinner in their sin, how about warning them of the truth of hell damnation and salvation through repentance to Jesus? Few warn because most are with sinners on the broad path to destruction. TIME TO REPENT AND DEDICATE TO JESUS AND BE SEPARATE FROM SIN. . . . When asked what one did with the woman at the well or later they asked about why Paul still sinned, this was the answer: Dear soul, those whom were forgiven were changed and left their sin…Jesus didn’t forgive those who stayed in their sins…He didnt say to the pharisees who refused to repent “Your sins are forgiven” Dont be fooled if you stay in sin and won’t turn from the broad path, then you won’t find the forgiveness needed to enter heaven…Rather hell instead…Time for you to repent and seek to know Jesus and he will lead you and forgive you…….

What You Must Do:
God commands all men everywhere to repent of their sins, turn to God, and believe in the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. Come to Him and flee from the wrath to come! To repent is to turn away from everything in your life that goes against God’s will, including your works, words, and thoughts.
Stop fighting against God! Fall down before Him and stop trying to justify yourself and think you’re good enough. Admit your wickedness before a holy God, your helplessness to do anything to please Him, and trust in nothing except what Christ has done.
If you come to Christ, repenting of your sins and believing in Him, you will be saved. . . .

Repentance: 1) to change one’s mind, i.e. to repent
2) to change one’s mind for better, heartily to amend with abhorrence of one’s past sins “Repentance (metanoia, ‘change of mind’) involves a turning with contrition from sin to God; the repentant sinner is in the proper condition to accept the divine forgiveness.” (F. F. Bruce. The Acts of the Apostles [Greek Text Commentary], London: Tyndale, 1952, p. 97.)

On the topic of salvation in one sermon MacArthur compared it to an exchange. He said, “It’s an exchange of all that I am for all that he is.”

Lordship “Salvation” – Playing Hide and Seek with the Gospel

hide and seek

By our friend, contributor and commenter, John

 2 Corinthians 4:3-4:  But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost:  In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.

How does Satan use Lordship “salvation” to keep people from believing the Gospel?

Following are some of my random thoughts on this question.  Please feel free to add yours.

False Fronts

 Luke 8:12:  “Those by the way side are they that hear; then cometh the devil, and taketh away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved.”

Much of mainstream Christendom teaches some form of false gospel of faith plus works.  Churches that fall into this category are not really churches at all – they are false fronts.  Satan loves to steer lost people into these buildings of bewilderment.

Consider the following from the Statement of Faith of a large Southern Baptist Convention affiliate in South Carolina:

“Our only hope is God’s free gift of salvation provided through Jesus’ death on the cross. When we repent of our sin, place our faith in Jesus, and surrender to Jesus as Lord we are saved.”

Of course our only hope is God’s free gift of salvation by Grace through Faith in Christ (Ephesians 2:8).  Unfortunately, by adding “when we repent of our sins” and “surrender to Jesus as Lord” as conditions of receiving eternal life, this church is not preaching the Gospel.

Note that the SBC mantra is “Reaching the World for Christ”.  This is not a likely outcome.

Playing for the Wrong Team

Closely associated with false fronts are believers who align themselves with them.

According to a March 27, 2013 blog in “The Christian Post”, the combined membership of the top 15 denominations in the United States is 62 million.  At the top of the list, with 16.2 million members, is the Southern Baptist Convention, followed by the United Methodist Church at 7.8 million.  Following is a quote:

 “…I have noted on a number of occasions how church membership, unfortunately, is fast becoming a meaningless number. Only the Assemblies of God on this list reported membership growth from the previous year, and their growth rate was only one-half 0f one percent.”

The real shame is that the membership numbers for many of these denominations are not shrinking faster.

Camouflage

 The Gospel (1 Corinthians 15:1-4) is a specific message that is unique in that it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believes.  Countless false gospels have been created by adding to the content of saving faith.

In his article “Attaching Personal Righteousness to the Backside of the Gospel Message”, J.O. Hosler writes:

“…one’s positions on the millennium, the rapture, or the length of days in creation do not fall within the parameters of what is essential to personal salvation. If we take a biblical concept that is important and profitably true and make it a contingency of the gospel when it is not, we have changed the gospel (Gal. 1:6-9).”

Fomenting Dissension among Believers

My final thought is that Satan’s work does not stop once a person believes.  He loves to cause dissension between us by appealing to our fleshly natures.  He hopes to divide and conquer by appealing to our emotions.  This includes misplaced loyalty to pastors or theologians, hurt over perceived slights from other believers, and disagreements over non-central theological issues.

The Grace Gospel of TRUTH << Click

Sympathy for Rick and Kay Warren at Their Son’s Suicide

By Jack Weaver

Rick and Kay Warren’s son, Matthew, committed suicide a week or so ago.

Many of us here have children and, no matter their age or circumstances, we can think of nothing worse than discovering that our child has committed suicide. We have sympathy for the Warrens as they go through their grief and loss. We also know that a parent cannot command the actions of a twenty something son or daughter.

There have been no statements released indicating that their son, Matthew, ever made that critical decision to trust Jesus Christ alone as his Savior, by Grace alone through Faith alone. We see many well meaning Christians speaking of Matthew, that they hope he will RIP (rest in peace). If he ever trusted Jesus Christ alone as his Savior, he will, right now, be resting at peace with his Savior, Jesus. However if he never made that decision to trust Jesus alone as his Savior, he is, like every unbeliever, not resting in peace but experiencing the horrors of Hell. That is Biblical fact! (John 3:18)

However, at this time while our feelings for the Warren family are sincere, we should not allow our sympathy to betray or cloud our Biblical discernment. Absolutely nothing can erase the horrible damage that Rick Warren’s “theology” has done to Biblical Christianity.

We pray that sympathy for the Warren family will not translate into Christians, out of compassion and tenderness, seeking to further investigate, follow and believe his false teachings.

One of Warren’s friends, Beth Moore (a false teacher in her own right), on Warren’s own web site, Pastors.com, used the occasion of Matthews suicide to write a scathing article, critical of any “believers” who would write anything against Warren’s false teaching at this particular time. She called out such Christians as being, relentless, mud slingers, mean, careless, bullies, enemies, hateful, mockers, slanderers, self serving, and snide.

Well, for years we have tried to document some of Rick Warren’s more egregious examples of promoting false doctrine, as well as his efforts to promote ecumenism.  Below are a few examples:

Here is Rick Warren speaking at his World Economic Forum Conference at Georgetown University. He brought in 3 Catholic priests, 3 Imams, 3 “Evangelical” ministers, 3 Rabbis — and asked what can we do about AIDS. He speaks of the Islamic Imams as his “Islamic brothers.”
This video is from the “World Economic Forum” in 2009 with — United Nations gurus Tony Blair (former UK Prime Minister) and Ban Ki Moon. This seems to be an ecumenical run up to the last World Ruling Power and the one world church.
Warren’s Ecumenical Anti-Biblical Video << Click

Quotes from Rick Warren at ExPreacherMan:

His Anti-Biblical remarks about fundamental Christianity:

“Today there really aren’t that many Fundamentalists left; I don’t know if you know that or not, but they are such a minority; there aren’t that many Fundamentalists left in America … Now the word ‘fundamentalist’ actually comes from a document in the 1920s called the Five Fundamentals of the Faith. And it is a very legalistic, narrow view of Christianity.” Quote by Rick Warren, May 2005

He calls Biblical fundamentalism an enemy – compares with Muslim fanatics:

[Fundamentalism is] “one of the big enemies of the 21st century.” “Muslim fundamentalism, Christian fundamentalism, Jewish fundamentalism, secular fundamentalism – they’re all motivated by fear. Fear of each other.” Rick Warren, January 2006

As believers in God’s free Grace we should sympathize with  the Warren’s in their grief, just as we would with any other human beings. But please, do not fall for the ecumenical gobbledygook being spread by the religious left that we must “feel” for the Warren’s and consequently embrace Rick’s foul teaching.

Eternal Life for You FREE << Click

The Mistrusting Groom: A Portrait of Lordship Salvation’s Capricious “god”

just married 3

The following story illustrates the vindictiveness and absurdity of the false “god” of Lordship Salvation, an unbiblical “god” who denies that salvation comes by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone (Ephesians 2:8-9; John 3:16-18; Acts 16:30-31); a whimsical “god” who denies assurance of salvation to all; a “god” of man’s creation who demands the promise of a lifetime of obedient [some say "over-the-top," "on-fire"] unwavering commitment—failure to fulfill that promise for a lifetime will, for the purveyor of Lordship Salvation teaching prove that one was never saved to begin with. What a mean ridiculous unbiblical “god” is this “god” of Lordship Salvation.

Source for the following story: Sarah Hinlicky Wilson, “What’s His Is Ours,” from ChristianityToday.com, September 14, 2012, vol. 56, No. 8, Pg. 32.

“Picture this: a bride and groom dashing out of the church, through the showers of birdseed and into the limo, all aglow with the light of love from the vows they’ve just taken. In the backseat of the car, en route to the reception, they embrace and kiss. Then the groom announces that he has something to say.

“Now you realize, my dear,” he begins, “that, as far as I’m concerned, we can’t really say we’re married, because I don’t know yet what kind of wife you’ll turn out to be. I hope for the best, of course. And I’ll help you all I can. But only at the end of our lives will I be able to tell if you’ve lived up to my expectations. If you have—then, and only then, I’ll agree that we truly got married today. But if you don’t, then as far as I’m concerned we were never married at all. After all, how can I call you my wife if you fail to be a wife to me?”

Under such circumstances, it will not be a happy honeymoon—if there’s one at all. A wife cannot be a wife if her whole existence as wife is conditional and under constant scrutiny (likewise for a husband). She will certainly fail. This groom has completely misunderstood what just happened. A marital vow is a forward-looking creative act, not a retrospective judgment. The couple that tied the knot only 60 minutes ago is every bit as married as the couple celebrating their 60th anniversary. Whatever happens in the course of the marriage does not affect the “married-ness” of that couple.”

Lordship Salvation for Kids? “Crazy Love” Lite: A Review of Francis Chan’s Children’s Book, “Halfway Herbert”

“Crazy Love” Lite: A Review of Francis Chan’s
Children’s Book, “Halfway Herbert” (Colorado Springs: David C. Cook Publishers, 2010)

by Califgracer

Halfway Herb

At First Glance:

Here’s a sampling of praises from glowing online reviews of Francis Chan’s children’s book, “Halfway Herbert”:

· “Excellent children’s book!”
· “great book for children of all ages!”
· “awesome book for kids and adults alike.”
· “a favorite with my children”
· “the book is great!”
· “an excellent book that helps teach honesty, integrity, hard work, and doing your best work.”

After taking a brief glimpse at the book, cover to cover, my superficial assessment was somewhat in line with the comments listed above. The artwork is attractive, bright and colorful. The narration is pithy with large letters for children to be able to follow along. The book’s layout is skillfully organized with artful interspersing of pictures and narration. The basic theme seemed innocuous, emphasizing virtues such as achieving goals, integrity, proper enthusiasm, and honesty. If my children were still young and I came across this book in a secular bookstore, not knowing anything about the book or its author, I might be inclined to pick up a copy. However, let’s investigate the book, “Halfway Herbert,” a little further.

A Closer Examination:

First, let’s look at the author of “Halfway Herbert,” Francis Chan. Chan is a former pastor from Simi Valley, CA, who now spends much of his time speaking at various conferences nationwide. He is the author of the best-selling book (two million plus copies sold to date), “Crazy Love.” He teaches and preaches a caustic, judgmental, all-or-nothing, brand of Lordship Salvation which absolutely decimates assurance of salvation for the believer who follows his teachings. For the unbeliever, his teachings may thwart that person from experiencing genuine Biblical salvation through trusting in Christ alone by grace alone through faith alone for salvation—Ephesians 2:8-9; John 3:16-18; John 11:25-26. This fact has been well chronicled at Expreacherman.com. See, for example, the articles:

http://expreacherman.com/2012/07/22/francis-chans-latest-speech-to-5000-christian-youths-questioning-their-faith/

http://expreacherman.com/2012/03/27/francis-chans-latest-pronouncement-failure-to-help-the-poor-could-send-you-to-hell/

Chan’s book, “Crazy Love,” could be viewed as a manual for Lordship Salvation teaching (a.k.a., Lordship Faith or Lordship Probation). In “Crazy Love,” Francis Chan concocts his own artificial list of characteristics of what he dubs, “the lukewarm.” In a nutshell, “lukewarm” means basically any churchgoer who does not live up to some lofty, on-fire, over-the-top level of service for God, whatever all of that entails. According to Chan, all of the “lukewarm” are unbelievers bound for hell. To read a complete review of “Crazy Love,” coming from a Free Grace perspective, see:

http://www.freegracealliance.com/pdf/BookReview%20ofCrazyLove.pdf

Since “Halfway Herbert” comes from the pen of Francis Chan, I would expect for there to be an emphasis on Lordship Salvation in the book. I was not wrong, although Chan’s approach was more subdued and veiled in this book written for children. Was “Halfway Herbert” intended to be a “Crazy Love” Lordship Salvation message targeted at children? The top headline on the rear of the book answers that question in no uncertain terms. It boldly and proudly refers to the book as, “The ‘Crazy Love’ Message for Kids!” I refer to the book as, “Crazy Love Lite.”

Content of the Book “Halfway Herbert”

In the book, “Halfway Herbert,” we are introduced to a young boy who has quite a problem: he does everything halfway. He eats only half of his meals; he brushes only half of his teeth; he does only half of his homework; he plays soccer only half-heartedly; he tells half truths. After we find out about Herbert, he experiences a minor bicycle accident, denting his father’s car, and then lying about the incident to his dad. His dad lovingly admonishes him and then uses the occasion to give him a Lordship Salvation type “salvation” message :

“Jesus doesn’t want us to love Him halfway. God doesn’t want us to live out of just half of our hearts. He tells us this in the Bible.” (Chan proceeds in the book to tell the story of a man building a tower, from Luke 14:28-30; a classic text used by Lordship Salvation teachers to try to prove that genuine salvation requires first “counting the cost.” In actuality, the text refers to the cost of discipleship, NOT salvation.) Chan continues: “This man didn’t just try halfway with his tower, and we shouldn’t follow Jesus halfway either. He deserves our whole hearts, our total devotion.” “But I’ve never been able to do things all the way,” cried Herbert. “God knows that none of us can love Him all the way by ourselves. So He gave us a friend called the Holy Spirit to help us live out of our whole hearts,” Herbert’s dad said. “When we decide to follow Jesus all the way, God’s Spirit fills up our hearts and helps us obey God.” “Can God’s Spirit help me?” Herbert asked. “Yes,” his dad answered. “God loves when we ask for His help!” So Herbert prayed, “Jesus, I am sorry I haven’t obeyed You. I want to follow You, but I don’t want to follow You halfway. I need Your help. Please give me Your Spirit so I can know how to follow You.” God answered Herbert’s prayer. Now he finishes things! . . . He also tries to obey what he reads in his Bible. He isn’t perfect, but God’s Spirit helps him.

Closing Thoughts

So what can we take away from our brief look at the book “Halfway Herbert?” Some would certainly say, “It’s just a simple harmless book, written strictly for children, which has a nice sweet innocent message.” But think about it for a moment. If the book is really what it claims to be, namely, “The Crazy Love Message for Kids!”, then, by self admission, it is a declaration of a false gospel, namely, Lordship Salvation. Did you notice that nowhere in the father-son dialog was anything mentioned about trusting in Christ Jesus alone by grace alone through faith alone for salvation (Ephesians 2:8-9; Acts 16:30-31)? On the contrary, all you see is a call to striving, a call to working harder for God, for attempting to do your best—namely, a works-for-salvation approach—a FALSE gospel! And it’s targeted at KIDS! How tragic!

Calvinist and Lordship Salvationist Objections to the Doctrine of Rewards

 Contributed by our dear friend, John

In my day-to-day discussions with professing believers, I have found several that have never even heard of the doctrine of rewards (the Judgment Seat of Christ).  When I have tried to explain the concept to them, responses have ranged from mild skepticism (“why haven’t I ever heard of this”) to outright rejection (“that doesn’t sound right”).

The doctrine of rewards is clearly taught throughout scripture, including in 1 Corinthians 3:8-15:

Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour.  For we are labourers together with God: ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building.  According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon.  For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.  Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble; Every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is.  If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.

Following are the top ten reasons I can think of as to why someone might object to the doctrine of rewards:

  1. Ignorance – most churches don’t teach it.
  2. Disbelief in the doctrine of Grace – the doctrine of rewards is in direct conflict with Lordship “salvation.”
  3. Disbelief in eternal security – works must be done to stay saved.
  4. Disbelief in the doctrine of assurance – works are viewed as either the primary or supplemental basis of assurance.
  5. Belief in the Calvinistic tenets of “irresistible grace” and “perseverance of the saints.”
  6. Belief that good works are automatic in the life of the believer.
  7. Misunderstanding of the two natures of the believer.
  8. Confusing the judgment seat of Christ with the Great White Throne judgment or the Sheep and Goats judgment.
  9. Belief in a social gospel – the thought of differential rewards for believers may offend the sensibilities of someone with a socialist perspective.
  10. Confusion between scriptural passages dealing with the gift of eternal life vs. rewards for faithfulness – belief that heaven is the reward (see number 2).

From Clear Gospel Campaign:

“We believe that history unmistakably demonstrates that the lack of a clear understanding of the doctrine of the Judgment Seat of Christ leaves a theological vacuum on the question of human works and divine judgment, and that this vacuum is invariably filled by a corruption of the gospel of grace with some form of salvation by Christ-plus-works.  Accordingly, we believe that the teaching and preaching of the judgment seat of Christ, although not in any way part of the gospel message, is nevertheless essential to the preservation of the purity of the gospel message.”

Eternal Life Free For You <click

Notes on Calvin and Calvinism: Was John Calvin Really a Calvinist?

A Possible Sheep in Wolves’ Clothes or a Hard-core Calvinist Through and Through?—Notes on Calvin and Calvinism: Was John Calvin Really a Calvinist?
.
Calvin or not

Sources:

Dr. Phil Stringer, “Was John Calvin a Calvinist?” Grace Leadership Conference, 2011, Quentin Road Bible Baptist Church, Lake Zurich, IL.

Kent Kelly, “Inside the Tulip,” Southern Pines, NC, 1986.

Calvin’s Commentaries and Calvin’s “Institutes.”

Introduction:

In recent years, there has been a growing trend in Christianity for people to claim that John Calvin, the founder of modern Calvinism, did not really believe or teach what is being taught by Calvinists today. Many want to hold Calvin up as some sort of an iconic figure of the Protestant Reformation while, at the same time, they wish to distance themselves from the radical unbiblical teachings attributed to Calvin. They claim that the Five Points of Calvinism, known by the acronym “TULIP,” were actually invented by the Synod of Dort, over fifty years after Calvin’s death, having little or nothing to do with what Calvin actually taught. Some even want to go so far as to claim that Calvin really taught a Free Grace gospel. Startling!

Who are these people, mentioned above?

1. “New” Calvinists. This group generally holds to the modern five points of Calvinism but stands against “double predestination,” sometimes referred to as, “hypercalvinism,” the teaching that God predestined some for heaven and some for hell (neither can do anything to change that fate). They claim that Calvin did not teach double predestination.
2. “Moderate” Calvinists. They hold to only one to four of the five points of Calvinism. Most from this category would object to “limited atonement,” (the “L” of TULIP) the Calvinist false, unbiblical teaching that Christ died only for the elect. Some “moderate” Calvinists also deny that their concept of Calvinism teaches Lordship “Salvation.” Some also deny that Calvin taught Lordship “Salvation.”
3. Free Grace believers. Now, this is astonishing! But, yes, there are actually some who hold to the Free Grace Gospel of the Bible who think that John Calvin was, in reality, a Free Grace theologian! “He has just gotten a bad rap,” they say. How naïve is this! I submit that those who make this claim have read only short isolated clips of what Calvin wrote. Folks such as this love to answer Calvinists by saying, “Well, even Calvin himself didn’t believe what you teach.” Frankly, it is an impossible stretch to demonstrate that Calvin taught Free Grace theology. His standard pattern of writing throughout his commentaries is, when confronted with a Bible text that unmistakably declares that Christ died for the sins of ALL the world and, further, when the Bible explains the Gospel message of God’s Free Grace salvation by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone, Calvin initially states what the text says plainly (Free Grace); HOWEVER, he quickly filters the text through his preconceived skewed theological construct, restating, contradicting and denying what the text of the Bible clearly declares. This theological filter appears to have originated from his background of being a Roman Catholic Priest and, for a time, a humanist. He also held the teachings of Augustine in the highest regard.

Was Calvin simply a moderate or limited Calvinist, a Free Grace Gospel teacher who has been misquoted, or, in reality, a strong Calvinist or Hyper-Calvinist? Let’s look at some quotations from Calvin and see what he really said.

From Calvin’s Commentaries
1. John 6:33 KJV: “For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world.” Calvin’s response: “This passage teaches that the whole world is dead to God, except so far as Christ quickens it, because life will be found nowhere else than in him.” NOTE: Calvin’s comment here affirms four of the five points of Calvinism (T, U, L, I) and denies that God gave his Son to the whole world (while God’s gift of salvation through belief in his Son is offered to the whole world, sadly, many will reject his gift—Matt. 23:37).
2. John 3:16 KJV: “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.” Calvin’s response: Calvin begins by acknowledging the clear meaning of the verse, but then quickly reverses his position: Calvin: “Let us remember, on the other hand, that while life is promised universally to all who believe in Christ, still faith is not common to all. For Christ is made known and held out to the view of all, but the elect alone are they whose eyes God opens, that they may seek him by faith.” Additionally, Calvin said, “We must not assume that ‘the world’ means every single individual human being, ‘world’ refers to those who have the capacity and ability to believe.” NOTE: Calvin affirms in this statement, unconditional election, limited atonement and irresistible grace (U, L and I of the Calvinist acronym TULIP). Dr. Phil Stringer relates further that Calvin repeatedly says throughout his Commentaries that “all,” or, “the world” mean, to him, all kinds of human beings, some out of each class or race of people, or ranks of life, not every human being. Calvin, thereby, attempts to dodge the clear straightforward meaning of “all” or “all the world,” in Scripture, as meaning EVERYONE. As Dr. Stringer put it so aptly, “Even a child can understand that all means ALL.”
3. Matthew 23:37 KJV: “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not! Calvin’s response: “Again, when the sophists seize on this passage, to prove free will, and to set aside the secret predestination of God, the answer is easy. God wills to gather all men, say they; and therefore all are at liberty to come, and their will does not depend on the election of God. I reply: The will of God, which is here mentioned, must be judged from the result. For since by his word he calls all men indiscriminately to salvation, and since the end of preaching is, that all should betake themselves to his guardianship and protection, it may justly be said that he wills to gather all to himself. It is not, therefore, the secret purpose of God, but his will, which is manifested by the nature of the word, that is here described; for, undoubtedly, whomsoever he efficaciously wills to gather, he inwardly draws by his Spirit, and does not merely invite by the outward voice of man.” NOTE: Calvin holds to the classic Calvinist denial of free will while affirming the Calvinist U, L and I.
4. 2 Peter 3:9 KJV: “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.” Calvin’s response: once again, Calvin makes an initial affirmation of what the verse plainly states, but he quickly denies his affirmation with the following statement, “But it may be asked, If God wishes none to perish, why is it that so many do perish? To this my answer is, that no mention is here made of the hidden purpose of God, according to which the reprobate are doomed to their own ruin, but only of his will as made known to us in the gospel. For God there stretches forth his hand without a difference to all, but lays hold only of those, to lead them to himself, whom he has chosen before the foundation of the world.” Comment: Calvin clearly twists the clear meaning of the text, pushing his notion of limited atonement.
5. 1 John 2:2 KJV: “And he is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.” Calvin’s response: “Here a question may be raised, how have the sins of the whole world been expiated? I pass by the dotages of the fanatics, who under this pretense extend salvation to all the reprobate, and therefore to Satan himself. Such a monstrous thing deserves no refutation. . . . It seems to me that the Apostle is to be understood as speaking only of all those who believe, whether Jews or Gentiles, over the whole world. Then under the word all or whole, he does not include the reprobate, but designates those who should believe as well as those who were then scattered through various parts of the world.” Once again, Calvin denies the simple straightforward message of 1 John 2:2, while pushing his own theological platform of limited atonement.
6. James 2:17 KJV: “Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone.” Calvin remarks, “He [James] says that faith is dead, being by itself, that is, when destitute of good works. We hence conclude that it is indeed no faith, for when dead, it does not properly retain the name.” James 2:18 KJV: “Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works; shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works.” Calvin’s response: “Shew me by works thy faith; for since it is not an idle thing, it must necessarily be proved by works. The meaning then is, Unless thy faith brings forth fruits, I deny that thou hast any faith. This verse is a key to the meaning of James: faith is to be proved by works; then faith properly justifies and saves, and works prove its genuineness.” COMMENT: Calvin makes the standard error of Lordship “Salvation” teachers in misinterpreting James. James’ epistle clearly speaks to believers about the quality of their faith, NOT the reality of faith. Calvin unmistakably declares the Calvinist teaching of perseverance, the “P” of the Calvinist TULIP. Calvinist perseverance is nothing other than the false teaching of Lordship “Salvation.” For a detailed look at this subject, see Dr. Tom Cucuzza’s outstanding book, “Secure Forever! God’s Promise or Our Perseverance,” St. Cloud, MN: Xulon Press, 2008 (see the link on the right column of Expreacherman.com).
7. Finally, if there were any doubt left in anyone’s mind about where Calvin stood on what is known today as, “Calvinism,” look at this main title in Calvin’s “Institutes” section dealing with the subject of predestination. The title itself leaves no doubt on Calvin’s position: “Of the Eternal Election by Which God has Predestined Some to Salvation and Others Predestination in Hell.” This title and statement of his position, declares Calvin to be, not only a Calvinist, but a HYPERCALVINIST!

Lordship “Salvation” Authors/Speakers Francis Chan and David Platt Team Up to Create the “Multiply” Discipleship Movement

discipleship

Francis Chan, author of best-selling book, “Crazy Love,” and David Platt, author of the book “Radical,” haved teamed up to form a new movement called, “Multiply.”

On the face of this undertaking, the motivation may seem harmless, perhaps even noble—to motivate, to encourage, to enable people to make disciples. But we must analyze this situation more deeply by asking a couple of pertinent questions:

What happened to the gospel? The Bible declares that we are saved by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone (Ephesians 2:8-9; John 3:16-18; Acts 16:30-31). Why is it that this new “movement” pushes discipleship but not salvation by grace through faith in Christ alone?

Make disciples of whom or of what theology? A disciple is simply a “follower.” But whom or what are people being asked to follow? Buddhists have their disciples (followers); so do Jehovah’s Witnesses and Mormons. Promoters of Lordship “Salvation” have their disciples too.

As I read through some of the materials on the “Multiplymovement.com” website, it became quickly obvious that the “discipleship” principle being promoted was the standard radical Lordship “salvation” agenda which David Platt and Francis Chan have pushed for years through their radical LS books, videos, sermons and articles.

Here are a few excerpts from the Multiplymovement.com website:

From Part I, # 1, page 1, “What is a Disciple?”:

“It’s impossible to be a disciple or a follower of someone and not end up like that person. . . . Yet somehow many have come to believe that a person can be a ‘Christian’ without being like Christ. A ‘follower’ who doesn’t follow. How does that make any sense? Many people in the church have decided to take on the name of Christ and nothing else. This would be like Jesus walking up to those first disciples and saying, ‘Hey, would you guys mind identifying yourselves with Me in some way? Don’t worry, I don’t actually care if you do anything I do or change your lifestyle at all. I’m just looking for people who are willing to say they believe in Me and call themselves Christians.”

Comment: Standard Lordship Faith caricature of Free Grace theology.

From Part I, # 2, page 2, “How Do I Become a Disciple?”:

“The word repent means ‘to turn.’ It has the idea of changing direction and heading the opposite way. It involves action. . . . Jesus says we need to repent. This implies that we all need to turn from the way we are currently thinking and living.”

Comment: Standard Lordship Faith “salvation” message of “turning from one’s sins” and performing some kind of action in order to be saved. For LSers, believing in Christ alone by grace alone through faith alone is not meritorious enough, i.e., it is not sufficient to save a person from his sins.

From Part I, # 3, page 3, “The Lord of Grace”:

“Salvation is all about the grace of God.”

Comment: Great! Why don’t you believe it?

Continuing from page 3, “But keep in mind that while this is simple, it’s not easy. Faith in Jesus Christ means believing that He is Lord (according to Rom. 10:9). Have you ever thought about what Lord means? We sometimes think of it as another name for God, but it’s actually a title. It refers to a master, owner, or a person who is in a position of authority. So take a minute to think this through: Do you really believe that Jesus is your master? Do you believe that He is your owner—that you actually belong to Him? . . . The problem is, many in the church want to ‘confess that Jesus is Lord,’ yet they don’t believe that He is their master.”

Comment: Again, this is the standard Lordship Faith misapplication of Jesus Christ as “Lord.” Yes, Jesus Christ is Lord God of Creation, Lord God of Redemption, Lord God of the Universe, Lord God of ALL; He is Lord, in spite of any puny declaration that one can make. We do not make Jesus “Lord.” He IS Lord!

From Part I, #5, page 4, “Count the Cost”:

“As you work your way through this material, you will be challenged to consider what it means to be a follower of Jesus. . . . But before you set out to teach other people to be disciples of Jesus, you need to examine your heart and make sure that you are a disciple. Read the following words from Jesus slowly and carefully. Understand that Jesus is speaking these words to you. Think about what Jesus is saying and how it should affect the way you approach this material and your relationship with Him. After you have read this section, use the questions below to help you count the cost of following Jesus (quotation given from Luke 14: 25-33).”

Response: This text from Luke is often cited by Lordship Faith advocates to claim that salvation requires a whole array of promises to fulfill, statements of commitment to make, promises of things one must give up (money, lifestyle, etc.), and the carrying out of these promises in order to be worthy of acquiring or maintaining salvation. This is a misuse and a misapplication of a Scripture that has nothing to do with salvation; furthermore, it is a denial of the multitude of Scriptures that declare that salvation is completely a gift of God by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone. There are NO STRINGS ATTACHED!

Billy Graham, King of Lordship Salvation’s False Gospel!

From our friend, John

A friend of mine recently recommended an article from “Decision Magazine”, a periodical published by the Billy Graham Evangelistic Organization.  I went to the website for that magazine and perused the titles from several back issues, before coming across an article dated September 12, 2012, entitled “How to Be Sure You’re Saved.”

There were five steps offered by Graham, at least two of which constituted a false gospel of works.

They were as follows:

1.   You must recognize your need

2.   You must understand the cross

3.   You must count the cost

4.   You must take a definite step

5.   Allow God to change your life

Under number 3 (you must count the cost) is the following quote: 

“Many people come to Christ without first counting the cost. The cost includes repentance, the forsaking of sin, and a continual, daily, open acknowledgment of Christ in your life.”

My Comment: Graham is not clear whether he believes that “counting the cost” is a requirement for salvation or for discipleship.

Under number 4 (you must take a definite step), Graham is explicit in his view that something besides simple faith in Christ is required for salvation: 

“We ask people to make a public confession of Christ in our meetings because Christ demanded a definite commitment. Christ had reasons for demanding that people openly follow Him. He knew that an unwitnessed vow is no vow at all. Until you have surrendered to Christ by a definite act of your will, you are not a Christian.”

My comment:  there is no vow, commitment, or confession required to be a Christian.  Salvation is by Grace through faith in Christ alone.

Graham finishes with this invitation: 

“Would you not like to know that every sin is forgiven? Wouldn’t you like to know that you are ready to meet God? It could happen today, if you will only let Christ come into your heart. Invite Him in right now. The Bible says, “Whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved” (Romans 10:13).”

My comment:  this invitation is not Biblical.  One is saved by Grace through faith.  Once that happens, Jesus comes into his heart.  It is not the means by which one is saved.  It is the result.

I saw Billy Graham live once when I was in junior high.  We watched his crusades on television when I was growing up.  Now, I pass by the Billy Graham Library each time I drive to the airport.  I am reminded every time I see a billboard advertising Graham’s self-promoting “library” of the extent to which he is considered the authority on matters of faith by the religious establishment, government and the mainstream news media.  But, now that I believe the Gospel, I don’t believe Billy Graham.

Billy Graham was the leading icon of evangelicalism in the twentieth century.   His theme song was “Just As I Am.”  The words to the first verse read as follows: 

“Just as I am, without one plea

But that Thy blood was shed for me,

and that Thou bidst me come to thee,

O Lamb of God, I come, I come.”

If Billy Graham ever believed those words, he denies them by his current teaching.

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Latest on New Calvinist Timothy Keller: Timothy Keller in Interview Stumbles Over the Gospel; Speculates That There is a “Trap Door” to Heaven

See Interview of New Calvinist author and PCA Sr. Pastor, Timothy Keller (Martin Bashir interviews Timothy Keller):

Timothy Keller, widely popular author of, “The Reason for God, The Prodigal God” and “Generous Justice,” is also senior pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church of New York. He has endorsed the “Christian” Mysticism book, “Spiritual Disciplines Handbook,” by Adele Calhoun, a book which promotes contemplative prayer, labyrinth prayer, spiritual formation and inner healing. His church also teaches classes on the subject.

In the YouTube video (link above), interviewer Bashir asks Keller if Christ and Christianity is the only way to heaven. He asks Keller what is his view about other religions like Hinduism, Islam, Judaism and Buddhism and what will be the eternal fate of their devoted followers. For five minutes, the seemingly befuddled Keller stammers and fidgets, dancing around the question and never giving a biblical answer, or any real answer, for that matter. Keller’s response to Bashir was very similar to Bashir’s interview of universalist Rob Bell. Neither Keller nor Bell could give any kind of definitive biblical answer about salvation, heaven or hell. Both simply sidestepped Bashir’s straightforward question.

This is how I would answer Bashir’s question:

Well, Mr. Bashir, it really doesn’t matter what I think about about the matter, but let’s look at what the Bible said and what Jesus himself said on the subject. Then I would quote:

John 14:6 “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life; no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”

Acts 4:12 “Neither is there salvation in any other; for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved [Peter is referring to the name of Jesus].

Acts 16:30-31 “And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved? And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.”

Matthew 7:13-14 “Enter ye in at the strait gate; for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat; Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth to life, and few there be that find it.”

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.”

What would you say if you were asked the same question?

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Joyously Free From the Burden, Oppression and Depression of Lordship “Salvation” and Calvinism.

By Jack Weaver

This is a wonderfully encouraging note from Kim who, with her husband, was trapped in Calvinism and Lordship “salvation” for over 22 years, She proclaims they are both now Joyously Free From the Burden, Oppression and Depression of Lordship “Salvation” and Calvinism. This is her story.

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I’ve been ‘lurking’ on your ExPreacherMan site for a couple of months now, and I can happily say that my eyes have been opened and my life and faith have been changed completely because of the wonderful words of Truth contained on your site, which God has so graciously used to ‘change my mind’.

My husband and I had been swallowing the false Calvinism and Lordship Salvation teachings of R.C. Sproul and John MacArthur for 22 years, and me for 11 years before that, not realizing that they offered only false gospels.

In recent years, however, I found myself having more and more ‘trouble’ with the Calvinism teachings and emphases. So the Holy Spirit had been preparing me, I believe, for the day I came across your web site and discovered how truly disgraceful the teachings of Calvinism and Lordship Salvation are — false teachings offering false gospels, we now clearly see.

In searching for information on the book A Hole in Our Gospel by Richard Stearns, [Reviewed by Bruce Bauer] I got a hit on your site, and then came across the post You May Be a Lordship Salvationist If:” [By John] and began reading. I not only gained the information I needed to refute the unbiblical ‘social gospel’ message of Stearns’ book, which I knew to be error, but quickly saw the Truth of Free Grace as I read more and more of your posts and comments.

Now my husband and I are 100% Free Gracers, and are experiencing that wonderful feeling of a giant burden lifted! The oppression and depression of years of works and behavior focus are gone, and we’re finally enjoying and appreciating the wonder and joy of salvation by God’s Grace alone through Faith alone in Christ alone. So Thank You so much for your wonderful ministry at ExPreacherMan. We will keep reading!

Now we are looking for a Free Grace church in our area! Can you tell me, please, whether you recommend churches that are associated with the Evangelical Free Church of America organization? I know Chuck Swindoll was pastor of an EFCA church in Fullerton, California for years, but now has his own church in Frisco, TX that is not EFCA affiliated. In our search for DTS (Dallas Theological Seminary) churches, we found a couple near us that identify themselves as EFCA churches. By the way, unfortunately it was Calvinistic teachings which had infiltrated a DTS church that I landed in shortly after college that initially led me astray. And we are finding that LS teaching seems to be everywhere.

Thank you so much,
Kim

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Kim, thanks for your encouraging note. We are excited to read your email about how you and your husband have come to a clear understanding of Salvation by Grace alone through Faith alone in Jesus alone. We are blessed by your note!!! This will be a Thanksgiving in which we will give thanks to the Lord for you and with you.

About your question on EFC churches. My understanding is that they are a loose affiliation of churches with no real “set-in-concrete” Statement of Faith. Some of them may be OK but others wander all over the theological landscape — some are Calvinist and some LS.

I am sure our readers will rejoice with you and some may have suggestions for churches — but regrettably, we find good Free Grace churches are very few. If you wish to disclose your approximate general location, some of our readers may be able to help you with suggesting a church.

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Latest News on “Radical” Author David Platt: Calvinist Author of Lordship Salvation book “Radical” Openly Declares his Lordship Salvation Stance

David Platt is a 33 year-old preacher and author from Alabama who preaches and promotes a judgmental form of Lordship Salvation, a.k.a. Lordship Probation or Lordship Faith teaching. He is very similar in style and approach to Francis Chan (there are several articles on Chan at the Expreacherman.com site). Platt wrote a best-selling Lordship Faith book entitled, “Radical.” It is very much akin to Chan’s popular book, “Crazy Love.” The following is an excerpt from the article, “David Platt Still Addressing Controversy Over ‘Sinner’s Prayer’ Remarks,” SOURCE: thechristianpost.com, November 12, 2012. Platt got himself into hot water with various Christian groups recently over a public comment that he made declaring that the sinner’s prayer is “superstitious.”

We, who hold to Free Grace theology, declare the biblical message of Ephesians 2:8-9, that salvation is by grace alone through faith alone in Christ Jesus alone; Free Grace theology also agrees that “walking an aisle,” “raising a hand,” or “saying a prayer” are of themselves in no way salvific. However, David Platt’s “sinner’s prayer” comment seemed to be a caricature of what he calls, “easy believism,” as well as a not-so-veiled slam at Free Grace teaching in general. His later statement of defense of that comment bears this out. Below is his statement. You will notice that in it Platt utilizes the same old worn-out hackneyed Lordship Salvation slams that have been used and reused by other LS preachers and writers like John MacArthur, Francis Chan and John Piper. These guys really need to come up with some fresh arguments!

From the article from the Christian Post, 11/12/12:

“‘But the question,’ he said, is: ‘What kind of faith are we calling people to? In a day of rampant easy-believism that creates cultural Christians who do not know Christ, who have never counted the cost of following Christ, we must be biblically clear about saving faith, lest any of us lead people down a very dangerous and potentially damning road of spiritual deception. True, saving faith, the Alabama pastor explained, requires first understanding man’s condition before God – that they are dead in sin. ‘We cannot dumb it down,’ he stressed. ‘We are morally evil.’ ‘To be born-again, one must repent – turn from sin and self – and believe – trust in Jesus as the Savior who died for us and the Lord who rules over us.’ ‘We tell men and women, boys and girls everywhere: repent and believe in Christ. Whether we say, ‘Pray this prayer after me,’ is not the issue,’ Platt highlighted. ‘The issue is that together we say, ‘By the grace of God in the cross of Christ, turn from yourself and trust in Jesus. Come from darkness to light. Come from death to life.’”

Latest pronouncement by John Piper: It Takes a Village to Remain Eternally Secure; John Piper’s Latest

(Source: desiringGod website, 9/15/2012: John Piper, article, “Eternal Security is a Community Project.”)

In his recent sermon, “Eternal Security Is a Community Project,” John Piper declares that our eternal security is not based solely upon the finished work of Christ at Calvary (we are saved by grace alone through faith alone in Christ Jesus alone—Ephesians 2:8-9); rather, Piper indicates that a person must keep his or her faith in Christ secure through perseverance: an unbiblical program of doing good works in order to prove and/or maintain salvation—the “P” of the Calvinist acronym “TULIP.” The proper Biblical designation of the letter “P” is PRESERVATION—that is, God does the saving and God does the keeping (John 10:27-30; Romans 8:38-39; 1 John 5:13). But, Piper takes things even a step farther than the standard erroneous Calvinist approach. He adds another qualification to maintaining one’s eternal security. I call it, “The ‘It Takes a Village’ Pathway to Eternal Security.” Listen to the following brief excerpts from John Piper’s sermon (source cited above):

“The doctrine we are talking about today goes by different names and has an urgent and practical application to our life together. Some call it the doctrine of eternal security. And Some call it the doctrine of perseverance. And the practical application is that, whichever you call it, the process is a community project. That is, you and I are essential in helping each other persevere to the end in faith, and not make shipwreck of our souls. Or, as the title of the message says, ‘Eternal Security Is a Community Project’.”

“So point #2 is that one of the essential means of not becoming hardened — the protection against an evil heart of unbelief — is the other believers around you speaking faith-sustaining words into your life. Your family, your friends, your shepherd group. ‘Exhort one another every day.’ That is, speak words of faith-sustaining truth into each other’s lives.”

“So the second point of this theology of perseverance is that God has designed his church so that its members endure to the end in faith by means of giving and receiving faith-sustaining words from each other. You and I are the instruments by which God preserves the faith of his children. Perseverance is a community project. Just like God is not going to evangelize the world without human, faith-awakening voices, neither is he going to preserve his church without human faith-sustaining voices. And clearly from the words, ‘exhort one another’ (verse 13), it means all of us, not just preachers. We depend on each other to endure in faith to the end.”

“Perseverance is the evidence of being born again in Christ, not the means to it. Or to put the same point negatively: If you don’t hold your confidence in Christ to the end, what would it show? It would show that you ‘had not come to share in Christ.’ So the negative of verse 14 would read, We have not come to share in Christ, if indeed we do not hold our original confidence firm to the end’. So you see what this implies about eternal security? It says: if you have come to share in Christ — that is, if you are born again, if you are truly converted, if you are justified and forgiven through saving faith — you cannot fail to persevere. You will hold your confidence in Christ to the end.”
[Comment: Piper declares the standard flawed unbiblical line of—works to preserve and prove salvation—lordship faith teaching]