Our friend John brought to my attention (the first time I’d heard it) the description of Lordship “salvation” (LS) as being a Bi-Lateral Contract Salvation. What a wonderful description of the lie of LS. Thank you, John. I am not a lawyer but I think I can explain how it relates to salvation and the LS lie. If I fall short, please back me up.
A Bi-Lateral Contract is an agreement in which each of the parties to the contract makes a promise or set of promises to the other party or parties. Think about it! This IS Lordship “salvation.
Whereas, in a Uni-Lateral Contract, only One Party to the contract makes a promise and the second party may accept or reject the contract along with all the provisions and benefits therein. A Uni-Lateral Contract is God’s Salvation by Grace alone through Faith alone in Christ alone. A person may take it or reject it.
God has made His salvation an offer that is absolutely a Uni-Lateral Contract. God sees man as imperfect, a sinner and incapable of ever reaching, on his own, the perfection God requires for Heaven. The requirement for eternal life is TOTAL PERFECTION!! Man himself is absolutely incapable of that, so God provided Himself in the person of Jesus Christ, God in the Flesh, Absolute Perfection to come to earth, live a perfect life and give Himself in death to pay the sin-death penalty for all mankind. Jesus Christ arose from the grave, thereby guaranteeing His Uni-Lateral Contract with mankind.
Now, God’s Uni-Lateral Contract is this — He has done all the work required for Heaven and offers it Freely to any an all who will take it — There is no obligation on the part of the taker, before, during or after, as it is God’s FREE Gift, a Uni-Lateral Contract to mankind. You simply make the decision to take His Gift by Faith, believing what He has done on that Cross applied to you and could never be accomplished by your good works (Ephesians 2:8-9). You simply believe/trust in Jesus Christ for what God has promised in His Contract. The result is Everlasting, Eternal Life with Him for whosoever believes.
Then we see the counterfeit, “Lordship salvation” whose lie IS a Bi-lateral Contract.. where the proponents say that Christ has “done it” for us but we must do our part, before, during or after “salvation” or, by their rules, we “may not” be saved. There is always that smoldering, lingering doubt. “Have I done enough.” Their theory is such that we must be willing or promise to commit to “follow” Jesus, to work for Jesus and learn the LS subset of rules for their conditional system of eternal life. If we accomplish all their requirements, then maybe someday we will have done enough to qualify for Heaven. We’ve seen that impossible and nebulous teaching proclaimed by the prince of Lordship Salvationists, John MacArthur. Here is one, among many, of his quotes:
“Let me say again unequivocally that Jesus’ summons to deny self and follow him was an invitation to salvation, not . . . a second step of faith following salvation.” (Dr. John MacArthur, The Gospel According to Jesus What is Authentic Faith? pp. 219.)
That, my friends, is a perfect example of the awful lie of Lordship “salvation” or Bi-Lateral Contract salvation. They say that Christ has done His work but in order to gain salvation you must do your part of the Bi-Lateral Contract, “deny self and follow him.” What an horribly absurd distortion of sound Biblical Doctrine!!
“Then said they unto Him [Jesus], What shall we do, that we might work the works of God?
“Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe [Gr. pisteuo = trust] on Him whom He hath sent.” John 6:28-29
The Work of God is complete in His Uni-Lateral Contract. We may either believe on Christ and have eternal life or neglect/reject Christ in God’s Uni-Lateral Contract and suffer eternal separation/death. Either one is a choice one must make, our individual, personal choice. To ignore, put off, refuse or neglect to make a choice IS a choice.
“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 [Jesus].” John 3:18