Lordship “salvation” Equals a Bi-Lateral Contract “Salvation”

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

Complete Answer — How to NOT Be Eternally Condemned.

66 responses to “Lordship “salvation” Equals a Bi-Lateral Contract “Salvation”

  1. Oh my, I am going to have to read every bit of this… I have been explaining for those who are Lordship and also Arminian and Calvinist, how they have forgotten the promises of salvation are unilateral, and not bilateral, and I have used similar discussions with others, and am teaching right now the covenants, slowly, and underneath the Mosaic, I am going to tack this link so they can come and read. So that after they see the two conditional covenants, they can understand how they can never work, we will fall short.

    The LS (Load-shippers) do not understand evidently that they will fall short of their side of the bargain, and anything short of perfection is not good enough for God, so they got an “F” before they ever started….

  2. Boy I tell you, the Holy Spirit did His job with me in this area, as of course in all areas He is perfect. I remember very well how I was brought to the realization that I was a vile sinner & I felt so hopeless, until my dad shared Christ with me, it all began to make sense somehow, of course looking back I know it was the Spirit of God again making Christ real to me. My thick skull though took awhile for it to sink in, but praise God He is a master of piercing thick skulls with his Gospel!

  3. Marcella,

    I’m of the conviction that it is necessary that a person realizes they are born in Adam, dead in their sins, eternally separated from God before presenting the gospel (the “good news”), particularly in our modern age where there are countless religions; most believing they are working their way to heaven, and others merely working to come to a greater realization of the supposed “god” within (New Age), most of whom believe in billions of years of evolutionary process, which is a major hurdle when it comes to accepting the origin of the sin nature. In either of these situations, there is a faulty understanding of Who Jesus is and why He came in the first place. Unless a person understands his desperate plight as a member of the human race, why should one consider this message “good news” and come to understand that Jesus was the Lamb of God, the only One capable of reconciling him, who is dead in his sins, to the Father by His redeeming blood? If there is no realization that God will judge the world in righteousness (wherein we all fail miserably), then what makes Jesus any better than Mary or Hinduism or Islam or Me?

    “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?” Jeremiah 17:9

    “…for we have before proved both Jews and Gentiles, that they are all under sin;
    “As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:…” Romans 3:9&10

    “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;…” Romans 3:23

  4. Pearl, would you please explain what you mean by this: “Obviously, knowledge of and conviction of sin must be present prior to presenting the gospel”? and present some scriptures for this? Thank you!

  5. Hi John,

    Good point about the many admonitions in the New Testament for believers to live holy lives. I, too, often use the example of the prodigal son when dealing with lordship salvation advocates. They love to say that the parable taught a picture of a supposed believer who left the father, proving that he was not really saved to begin with; according to LS teaching, the son didn’t become a believer until he repented and returned to the father. That interpretation is dead wrong. The son was a son when he was with the father; he remained a son when he went to the far-off land (although he was out of fellowship with the father); he was still a son when he returned to the father.

  6. There were a number of “old time preachers” who perverted the Gospel. We read about them starting with the book of Galatians. They have been with us since the beginning of the Church. AP is the latest in a long line.

    God’s Gospel of Grace is offensive to the flesh – including those who think their attitude, their contrition, their good intentions, their good works, “going on for the Lord”, etc. contribute to their salvation.

    We find quite a few books in the New Testament written to exhort believers to Holy living, exhort believers to care for fellow believers in need, to warn believers against false teaching (such as AP’s works-based salvation), etc. These would not have been written if these things automatically followed salvation.

    The prodigal son was a believer who abandoned fellowship with his Father and then returned. How could salvation require from an unsaved person the commitment to discipleship, desire to serve the Lord, etc. that a BELIEVER – such as the prodigal son – could choose to turn from and still be saved?

    AP’s counterfeit teaching fails the following tests:
    1. It is not consistent with salvation by Grace through faith
    2. It is not consistent with eternal security
    3. It is not consistent with assurance of eternal security

    Like most other false gospels, LS requires inspection of works for evidence of faith.

  7. AP,
    Pearl’s observations are absolutely correct. You present so many misconceptions I do not know where to start.

    1) You seem to claim some mystical power to read the mind of the lost and somehow see their “ATTITUDE, a brokenness over sin and genuine sorrow and contrition.” AP, You do not have that presumptuous power.
    2) You say you will see a “corresponding desire and understand to depart from all that harms and dishonors the Lord. There is a desire for Jesus Christ to be our Lord now, that is why we come to Him.” And you want an unbeliever to grasp all of that before they can simply trust Jesus Christ as Savior? Absolutely un-scriptural.
    3) You say, “he needs to make Jesus Christ his Lord now and turn from all sin and selfishness, God does not regenerate such people because he CAN’T. They still loves their sin and their selfish ways.” Well, AP, you are looking for regeneration BEFORE belief, (Calvinist). I am happy you THINK you have “turned from all sin and selfishness” because that makes you a better “Christian” than the Apostle Paul. He continually struggled with sin and reported it in Romans 7:14-25
    For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin. [15] For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I. [16] If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good. [17] Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. [18] 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. [20] Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. [21] I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me. [22] For I delight in the law of God after the inward man: [23] But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members. [24] O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death? [25] I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin.
    Therefore you claim that you are more “spiritual” than Paul, one of the men whom the Holy Spirit used to write parts of the Bible. Your audacity is truly Amazing!!
    4) You also claim to be a “fruit” inspector. You said, “but NO FRUIT RESULTED. Sure some came to church for awhile, but they were still as sinful and blind as before. I could see the didn’t love God or His righteous ways like I and others did who were saved and serving God”
    AP, like all Lordship “salvationists” you set yourself up as the judge and jury of a believer’s behavior and salvation. You can NOT know the mind of any believer!!!
    5) You say, “The HOLY SPIRIT is the one who gives the sinner assurance.” You first say that a believer will not sin, then you say the Holy Spirit gives that sinner assurance? The Holy Spirit never gives an unbeliever assurance — but but a conviction of the need for the Savior.. Your jumbled thoughts are troubling!!. 1st John 5:13 is one of many verses of Scripture that truly gives the Believer assurance. Not some presumed “feeling.”
    5) You said of old-time preachers, “All tuaght UNCONDITIONAL SURRENDER TO CHRIST as “faith” and as “belief” in Christ. All taught that unless it was in their heart to FORSAKE ALL to follow Him, the would not be saved, but deceived hypocrites” AP that is your Lordship “salvation” problem, you pay more attention to writings and preachings of often questionable “preachers” than God’s Word. “UNCONDITIONAL SURRENDER”
    is NEVER taught as a prerequisite for salvation nor a condition to stay saved.

    Everyone who makes the decision to trust Christ as Savior must believe that Jesus is the Lord God in the Flesh and after believing and trusting Christ as SAVIOR, SHOULD (as the Bible says) follow the Lord. Jesus IS THE Lord but we do not make Him “lord of our life” to be saved.

    Yes, AP, “woe unto you” who believe what you have written.

    In Jesus Christ eternally, Jack

  8. Pearl:

    Excellent points!

    Thanks for the clarity.

  9. AP:

    You claim that you are neither Calvinist nor Reformed, but your theology declares both quite loudly.

    Pearl was correct when she graciously explained to you that we should never confuse justification (the one-time-for-all-time belief and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ for ETERNAL salvation—Acts 16:30-31; Ephesians 2:8-9; John 3:16-18) with sanctification, a lifelong process of growing spiritually in our faith. This is where lordship faith teachers get “off the track” theologically. They most often quote discipleship (sanctification) texts, usually from the Synoptic Gospels, as if they were intended to present the plan of salvation, which they do not. They also love to quote James, especially chapter two, as if this were intended to be some sort of test for who is a genuine believer. It is not! James speaks unmistakeably to believers (he identifies his audience quite clearly as believers, as his brothers in the Lord, several times in the first two chapters) about the QUALITY of a believer’s faith, NOT the reality of his faith.

    AP, you make the claim:

    “Well sister Pearl, I see alot of claims about LS, but what I don’t see is documentation for such assertions.”

    Your statement is factually quite incorrect! This discussion site has clearly and carefully documented many references to the false, unbiblical works-based theology known as “lordship salvation.” There have been many declarative quotations given on this site from Francis Chan, John MacArthur, John Piper as well as other lordship faith teachers to prove their most unscriptural stance! Go back and look up some of the many articles posted for yourself. There is no need to rehash it all here.

  10. Going by your standards and methods of gauging between false converts and true believers, AP, I’d have been deemed “unregenerated” by you years ago. How can you call me your “sister”?

    Obviously, knowledge of and conviction of sin must be present prior to presenting the gospel. But how hard must it be to accept and believe Jesus’ taking our place? What will it take for you to be convinced that a person feels guilty enough to “deserve” forgiveness?

  11. Well sister Pearl, I see alot of claims about LS, but what I don’t see if documentation for such assertions. Example–you claim that we believe that one must simultaneously LIVE A LIFE of perfect submission–this is impossible because salvation happens in a moment of time. What is important is THE ATTITUDE one comes to Christ with. If it is brokeness over sin and genuine sorrow and contrition, there is a corresponding desire and understand to depart from all that harms and dishonors the Lord. There is a desire for Jesus Christ to be our Lord now, that is why we come to Him–and He forgives, cleanses and regenerates. I can promise you I used to “lead people to the Lord” the C.S. Lovett Baptist way–salvation 1-2-3, and I got many to “believe” and “receive” Christ. NONE OF THEM ever continued with the Lord because they were never regenerated.

    You see, God did not go along with my gospel presentation, nor did He honor my attempts to get these people saved without first being convicted and broken over sin, and without wanting to now follow the Lord. God WILL NOT REGENERATE PEOPLE no matter what we trick them into doing. He looks for the humble, broken, contrite heart to dwell in, and if my preaching and evangelism does not cut the sinner and show him that he needs to make Jesus Christ his Lord now and turn from all sin and selfishness, God does not regenerate such people because he CAN’T. They still loves their sin and their selfish ways.

    Lordship salvation is found in the New Testament all over the place. We turn from sin and the devil to God with the intention to LIVE FOR HIM and honor Him. Without this, we can con people into praying the sinner’s prayer, like I used to do many years ago, but NO FRUIT RESULTED. Sure some came to church for awhile, but they were still as sinful and blind as before. I could see the didn’t love God or His righteous ways like I and others did who were saved and serving God. And then I stupidly told them not to doubt their salvation, as per instructions, and I assured them they were saved if they prayed and believed. That is false as well. The HOLY SPIRIT is the one who gives the sinner assurance. For me to not tell them to EXAMINE THEMSELVES TO SEE if they are in the faith-2Cor 13:5 was foolish. I was LYING TO LOST PEOPLE with the best of intentions and methods, taught to me by Baptists who were in serious error.

    Sinners need the law to crush them and all their self-rigteous hopes. Thank God I began to read Finney, Wesley, Spurgeon, Edwards and the like. Even though they were deeply divided over Calvinism vs Arminianism, all taught the SAME THING–use the law to bring the knowledge of sin and conviction, and call men to repent and FOLLOW Christ. All tuaght UNCONDITIONAL SURRENDER TO CHRIST as “faith” and as “belief” in Christ. All taught that unless it was in their heart to FORSAKE ALL to follow Him, the would not be saved, but deceived hypocrites.

    Lordship salvation, PROPERLY DEFINED is Biblical. This Baptist easy-believism is a 20th century creation in the United States and a departure from Biblical and historical evangelism. It has created so many false converts and embittered “backsliders” who never frontlsid, but “tried Jesus” and now are two-fold te children of Hell than before, because the pabulum we peddled was not true, and their experience did not match what we promised them. Woe unto us!

  12. I would agree with AP that too many believers stop just past the cross, and camp out there to live the remaining days of their “new life” in Christ. This is comparable to the Israelites wandering in the wilderness, not because they were lost, but because they believed God only as far as getting them out of Egypt (“salvation”), but refused to believe Him to be the source of their new life in the Promised Land (“abundant life”).

    But let’s not confuse this with Lordship Salvation, which teaches that in order for one to obtain salvation, one must simultaneously live a life of perfect submission. Only Jesus Christ was able to do that! Upon first trusting Jesus Christ alone for reconciling one to the Father by His blood for complete forgiveness of sins we have a babe in Christ. AP, you seem to suggest that God requires us to be running “Pauls” at the moment of new birth!

    Let’s not confuse salvation with sancification.

  13. The Old Testament was a CONTRACT–a covenant. In this dispensation, we are in the New Covenant. It is a holy contract. Both required blood. This aversion to any idea of contract or covenant reveals that there are many minds not renewed by the Word of God, but blinded by the traditions of men. We are commanded to love God with all our heart, mind, soul and strength, and to love our neighbor. if that isn’t LS, I don’t know what is. How do we do this. By repentance towards God and faith in Christ, not only to save us from the penalty of sin, but from its power as well. We are confessing Christ as LORD-Rom 10-9-13. This is very important to see. What I find shocking is how most people build there doctrine sorely upon things found in John’s Gospel, as if he wrote it in a theological and historical vacuum. What most of you believe Jesus Christ the Lord meant when He said to BELIEVE is not what He meant. You read it as if it has the weak, watered down meaning of our time, when in fact, what it meant THEN was to surrender and trust, follow and obey. That is the PROOF of genuine faith–that one has trusted Christ to save him–he is his follower, servant and disciple. James answered this whole debate way back then, and it is ironic how the Baptist band of believers avoid what James wrote.

    Christ plainly said we are to DENY OURSELVES, TAKE UP OUR CROSS AND FOLLOW HIM. He said that we must LOSE OUR LIVES for His sake if we wish to find life, and that if we seek to preserve our lives, we will lose our souls. That is UNCONDITIONAL SURRENDER. That is believing in Christ. It is more than just ” save me from Hell Lord”–it is “Lord please save me–I give you my life–you are the potter, I am the clay. thank you Lord for salvation.”

    This is not hard to understand. Salvation in likened to marriage, which is a contract with many unconditional pledges, as well as conditional ones. Salvation is marriage to the Lord, and it is more glorious that earthly marriage, but it is a contract nonetheless. To deny this is to deny central Biblical teaching, which seems to plague Dispenational Baptists in particular. Now I am a Dispensationalist, and I hate Reformed doctrine–I call it DEFORMED. I call Calvinism the Doctrines of Disgrace. But I am not a knucklehead Baptist who refuses to see how much man-made tradition is in such circles. Baptists are plagued with antinomian tendencies and doctrines the pervert the true meaning of faith and grace.

    Unless Christ is your LORD, He cannot be your saviour. Why would anyone resist wanting Christ as Lord over their entire lives??? Why would anyone object to this wonderful condition? Something in man revolts at this. they don’t mind christ saving them, but the Lord business troubles them. I wonder why?

  14. Bro. David,
    None of us is too old to learn Truth. I second Bruce’s statement.. and I value your friendship in Christ. I pray we all heed Scripture and be refreshed by God’s Living Word. “But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen.” 2 Peter 3:18

    In Jesus Christ eternally, Jack

  15. Praise God for your testimony, David!

  16. Bro. Jack, I’m glad the so-called “crossless gospel” was brought up. I’ll tell you, this really threw me for a loop recently, I’m so thankful that I have seen the danger of it, but I will have to say that the Lord brought good out of it, in that I was forced to clarify in my own mind that my faith is in Christ crucified & risen for me, & that over all, even though the inner battle has been tough, as all battles are, God has used it to hone my beliefs more clearly. I am more & more thankful for eternal security in Christ the older I get, because I can sure be hard-headed! God is good!

  17. AMEN! to what you said, Faith!

    Lordship salvation is wrong, destructive, and devious. Philippians 3:17-19, “Brethren, be followers together of me, and mark them which walk so as ye have us for an ensample. (For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ: Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things.)”

  18. Dear Friends,

    I have just published a shocking report of a conference started by Pastor Andy Stanley in Atlanta, GA, happening right now and attended by some of my personal Christian friends (who shall forever remain nameless).

    You will be disturbed and shocked as was I.
    Beware Catalyst Conference, Chan, Driscoll, et al
    http://www.expreacherman.wordpress.com/2011/10/06/beware-catalyst-conference-2011-chan-driscoll-et-al/

    In Jesus Christ eternally, Jack

  19. Faith,

    You are right — but the LS folks ARE salesmen, pushing their poison and expecting unsuspecting souls to buy it.. to their despair and detriment.

    In Jesus eternally, Jack

  20. that was a good one! 🙂

    when you really look at the error of Lordship Salvation you see how
    these leaders are actually insinuating that God actually bribes, blackmails, and manipulates man. No not my God- He offers us the gift (Christ) and we are free to accept it or not- no gimmicks, no salesmens pitch, no political
    backroom deals.

  21. Thanks, Jack, for digging up that oldie. I was amused to see it again too. How can folks believe that LS baloney???

    Hi Marcella, I think that I’ll pass on such an offer of prosperity “gospel” blessing. Where do they get that stuff anyway? I don’t find such tit for tat promises in the Bible anywhere! [Or should I have said quadruple tit for tat?]

  22. Thanks for that review of MacArthur’s book. It tickled my ribs! The prosperity gospel heretics would probably say, “Sow that $1,000 seed and expect a blessing! Watch the Lord double it, quadruple it or make you into a multimillionaire!”

    I don’t get any mail from Calvinistists, but I still get mail from the apostolic/Pentecostal/Latter Rain false prophets. I am asking them to take me off of their mailing list. No more of their strange “fire” for me!

  23. 😀 Thanks Jack! It’s a goodie.

  24. Pearl,

    I searched our archives for Bruce’s comment about the review. It is a classic and assuming Bruce won’t mind, here it is:

    I read a priceless satire of MacArthur’s book “The Gospel Acc. to Jesus” on Amazon reviews (under responses to Lou Martuneac’s one-star review). I trust that the writer will not mind my sharing his review as I think that he has really nailed the contradictory nature of LS teaching. (Perhaps you have seen this narrative already).

    “Saved by grace alone” says:

    Lou, I personally would like to extend an offer to every Lordship believer in here. I have a $1000.00 free gift that I would like to give to every Lordship believer in here right now. However, you must mow my lawn, wash my dishes, clean my car, shovel my snow in the winter, wash windows, clean my house and if there is any reserve in your obedience will only prove that you were never serious about receiving that free $1000.00 gift that I am offering. Unless you are willing to surrender all for me then don’t bother seeking the free $1000.00 gift. I have gone through much trouble to buy the best soap, the best lawnmower, the best cleaning products for you because I love you and given my all for you. Remember, my free gift is both free yet costly. I hope that one day I can give you the $1000.00 free gift only after I say, “you GOOD and FAITHFUL SERVANT!” I will not give you the free gift if you even cherish one thing contrary to my wishes. You must endure to the end to be paid or you will prove that you were never my true servant to begin with. It doesn’t matter how hard you have been working in the past but it is what you are doing today that counts. Are you faithfully serving me today? Then you can be sure that the free gift is yours but if tomorrow you fail in your service then that will prove that you never were part of my crew. Do you want that free $1000.00 gift?? Then get busy!! I do not have lazy and indifferent people in my crew. You might have “carnal ways” about you but you cannot simply be lazy as I would never offer my free gift to you.

    This is my view of Lordship salvation since I used to believe that damnable heresy years back. Praise God for saving me from that non-sense!!

    Thanks Bruce — and thanks Pearl for asking.

    In Christ eternally, Jack

  25. So far, Bruce, my favorite LS description comes from a reviewer at Amazon which you posted on another thread some months ago (the guy had $1000 to give away). Think you could find it again for those who missed it the first time around?

  26. Bruce,

    Good point — their false doctrine follows right into their conferences..

    I am not blessed to be on any Calvinist mailing list.. Please do not give them my name. 😎

    In Jesus Christ eternally, Jack

  27. I recently was sent a brochure for a Reformed Calvinist conference. In the promotional section it said the following:

    “As always, the conference is free to those who attend. We do ask, however, that you plan to contribute to the offering that will be collected at both the Friday and Saturday sessions to support the conference costs. It is open to anyone, including church officers, members, and families.”

    “the conference is free” . . . “it’s open to anyone” BUT “plan to contribute to the offering”

    The request for an offering is understandable, but the way it was worded reminded me of how Reformed Calvinists say that they offer a salvation that is a free gift, YET, there are always strings attached. Their “free” salvation must include a “repentance” from a former sinful lifestyle to apparently make one good enough to become saved; then it must contain a promise of lifetime commitment to God followed by the faithful living out of that promise for a lifetime, otherwise, that “free” salvation is said to have never existed in the first place. A pretty convoluted “gift” I would say.

  28. Pearl:

    Your illustration of God’s unilateral contract with Abraham was very fitting and very instructive—thanks! I especially liked your closing statement: “If God knew that the nation Israel could not keep the land in their own strength, how much more this applies to our inability to remain faithful enough to keep our salvation! It’s HIS faithfulness – a one-way contract of which we have no part except to believe it.” That really nails it!

  29. Thanks for the link to the PDF download, Jack. I just installed it and replaced the other PDF program I had on my computer. Now I’m able to read Duluth Bible Church’s articles! Yeah! Well, it would be a long commute for me to attend that church each Sunday, but I see they have audio and video files, so maybe I can watch it live or at least watch and listen to any sermons posted on their website.

  30. Marcella, your computer must have the ability to download and open a PDF file. No need to download Adobe PDF reader — it has a lot of excess baggage..
    Use instead “Foxit PDF Reader” free download.
    http://www.foxitsoftware.com/downloads/

    The Duluth PDF newsletter on Crossless Gospel starts in 2007 – Part 1.

    In Christ eternally, Jack

  31. Marcella,

    I communicate regularly with Pastor Dennis Rokser at Duluth Bible. I have never found an error in his preaching or writing. So if you are looking for a church — you might commute to Duluth MN. Cold in Winter but warm in Spirit year round. I figure he should bring his church, all families and set up permanently here in S. Florida. 😎

    If anyone wants the complete set of PDFs for their statement on the Crossless Gospel, just let me know. Do NOT put your email here for publication — I believe I may have it somewhere in my files.

    In Jesus Christ eternally, Jack

  32. John, that took me to the same link Jack provided. I’m not able to open any of those files. I get an error message and a “bong” sound on my computer!

  33. Marcella, look up Grace Family Journal
    http://duluthbible.org/163345.ihtml

    The first part of the series is in 2007.

  34. Jack, I’m not able to listen to those archived messages on Duluth Bible Church’s website. Either they’re outdated, or my computer is not compatible with the program they used. I did find this on their website, and thought it was worth sharing:

    http://www.duluthbible.org/164066.ihtml

  35. Thanks Marcella,

    I guess your and my comments crossed somewhere in outer-space. In spite of Stanley’s error somehow the Gospel message got to my Dad. Truly, only the Lord knows for sure.

    I guess TBN takes just about anyone who will pay the going rate$$$ for air-time. I do not recommend them because of so many false teachers and messages.

    In Jesus Christ eternally, Jack

  36. Jack, I will definitely heed your advice. Finding truth from the various purveyors can be like finding a needle in a haystack. As you might imagine, given my background, I approach most things circumspectly.

  37. Jan and John,

    Thanks so much. I second Jan’s statement..

    I find so often that those who visit here having been fooled by the counterfeit, are most excited when they finally understand the clarity of the Gospel and believe it!! The lies of the counterfeits are then so much easier to spot and dispute.

    In Jesus Christ eternally,

  38. Hi to each one of you,

    Thanks for your comments about the Lordship BiLateral contract. When John brought the phrase to my attention I was excited and immediately convinced that I should write an article about it — yet fearing that the legalese language might generate yawns and deter comments. What a blessing it is to see your participation. Your comments have made it much more interesting than the article!! Thanks again, John and thanks to each of you who have commented.

    John, I am happy Andy Stanley’s book opened your eyes and helped clear your doubts. But I do urge you to just use caution with Andy. He cooperated with the National Youth Workers Conference Atlanta in November 2009. They sponsored pre-convention Intensive Learning Labs with teachers “Andy Stanley, Francis Chan, Perry Noble, Donald Miller (Blue Like Jazz), Reggie Joiner, Steve Furtick”. (several are LS and Contemplative teachers)
    Source for speakers:
    http://www.churchconferences.org/national-youth-workers-convention-20nov/

    One never knows from whence Truth might come. I have an interesting story about Andy’s Dad, Charles Stanley. After I trusted Christ as my Savior, I was determined that at every chance I would share Jesus Christ and His salvation with my Dad. He was a Presbyterian Deacon, then Elder and then a co-founder of a liberal Presby church. When we visited Mom and Dad, he would converse with us but when I shared the Gospel he would inevitably become irate. He absolutely did not understand the simplicity of the Gospel message despite all I could do or say. The last time I spoke with him in person he shouted, “Then Jack, what IS a Christian?” So, one more time, I shared Jesus Christ and His Salvation with him and to my dismay, he still did not seem to understand.

    Several years later, I was shocked to receive an uncommon and unexpected, breezy, newsy hand typed letter from Dad and at the very bottom was this paragraph:
    Jack, this is something I know you wanted to hear from me. I have been listening to Charles Stanley’s TV program (they were home-bound by his illness) and I began to realize that I had received Christ as my Savior as a child in the Methodist Church. That’s about all there is to it.

    Shortly after that he had a severe stroke and I was unable to communicate any more with him. I’ll not know for sure whether he really had trusted Christ as his Savior until I see him in Heaven some day.

    So, even though I have differences with Charles Stanley, I am thankful that my Dad heard the Gospel one more time or at least it was clarified through Stanley using God’s Word.

    We simply never know through what or whom the Gospel will be heard and understood. We do know that the Lord honors His Holy Word as it is faithfully shared and the lost are convicted of their need for the Savior by His Holy Spirit.

    In Jesus Christ eternally, Jack

  39. That is why I have such a heart for the clarity of the gospel.

    It is my hope and prayer, John, that God is waking up many like you to the reality of what is happening to His gospel. I find your testimony encouraging!

    JanH

  40. John, be careful what you read read and who you promote. In 2007, Andy Stanley shared the platform with emergent church leaders at a spirituality conference: Rob Bell, Tony Dungy, Francis Chan, Matt Chandler, Louie Giglio, Dave Ramsey, and Charles Swindoll.

    In 2009, Stanley shared a platform at Youth Specialties 2009 National Youth Workers Convention with contemplative/emerging figures Donald Miller (Blue Like Jazz), David Crowder, Duffy Robbins, Tony Campolo, Jim Burns, and a number of others in that camp. In fact, Youth Specialties is one of the main avenues through which the contemplative/new spirituality is entering the church today and has been for many years.

    Stanley’s comment has stirred up discussion on many websites, where he is being labeled as a “seeker friendly, new evangelical emergent church leader,” and “false teacher”, “If we were able to rewrite the script for the reputation of Christianity, I think we would put the emphasis on developing relationships with non-believers, serving them, loving them, and making them feel accepted,” he wrote. “Only then would we earn the right to share the gospel.”

    Andy’s father, Charles Stanley, also associates with false teachers and false prophets. In 2004, he was in the line up of speakers at Morris Cerullo’s Save America Now! telecast. The “Christian leaders” on this telecast included: Jerry Falwell, Ted Haggard, Kenneth Copeland, Cindy Jacobs, Keith Butler, Charles Stanley , Tommy Tenney, Jack Van Impe, Judy Jacobs, Eddie and Alice Smith. Can anyone tell me why Charles Stanley’s programs are aired on TBN and Daystar television networks, both of which promote and air programs led by heretics, false teachers and false prophets?

  41. The first major contract illustrated for us in the scriptures may be found in Genesis 15, in which Abraham had absolutely no part in “signing it” (as in walking between these divided animals), nor any expectation to fulfill it:

    “And he said unto him, I am the LORD that brought thee out of Ur of the Chaldees, to give thee this land to inherit it.
    And he said, Lord GOD, whereby shall I know that I shall inherit it?
    And he said unto him, Take me an heifer of three years old, and a she goat of three years old, and a ram of three years old, and a turtledove, and a young pigeon.
    And he took unto him all these, and divided them in the midst, and laid each piece one against another: but the birds divided he not.

    And when the fowls came down upon the carcases, Abram drove them away…” Genesis 15:7-11

    {at this point, Abraham falls into a deep sleep and God tells him what will befall his people in Egypt, for how long, and that they will be delivered, and then…}

    “And it came to pass, that, when the sun went down, and it was dark, behold a smoking furnace, and a burning lamp that passed between those pieces.
    In the same day the LORD made a covenant with Abram, saying, Unto thy seed have I given this land, from the river of Egypt unto the great river, the river Euphrates
    …” Genesis 15:17,18

    If God knew that the nation Israel could not keep the land in their own strength, how much more this applies to our inability to remain faithful enough to keep our salvation! It’s HIS faithfulness – a one-way contract of which we have no part except to believe it.

  42. Jan, I know that as a “hearer”, I was confused. I had a faulty belief sytem that seemed to be corroborated by the teaching of commitment salvation. I’m not sure that I had ever heard the gospel message without some of these add-ons.

    A fried of mine suggested a book called “How Good is Good Enough” by Andy Stanley. I read the book and it concluded with salvation being by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone.

    I remember asking myself, when I finished the book, what about turning from sin and commitment. I went to the bookstore to look at some books by leading evangelicals. I also checked the statement of faith of the denomination in which I had grown up. These concepts of turning from sin for salvation and commitment for salvation showed up, in one form or another, in virtually everything I looked at.

    For whatever reason, I was led to the conclusion that those LS views were all wrong. I remember telling my wife “its a gift, not a trade.” She said “I know, I thought you already knew that.” We were both raised in the same denomination of independent churches, and somehow we had heard different messages.

    That is why I have such a heart for the clarity of the gospel. If the mission of the church is to know Christ and make him known, why distort the gospel? If one really wants to be a disciple, why not start with a clear understanding of the gospel?

  43. I’d like to share something with you, off the subject, so please forgive me, but it’s very funny! I was on a Lutheran blog last week, and they were talking about infant baptism and Christ being present in the communion elements. I interjected, said it was not biblical and wrote a few comments. This is the response I got back. LCMS stands for Lutheran Church Missouri Synod. No one has ever accused me of wanting to be my own pope before! Very funny! “If you want to deny all those doctrines then you will find yourself at home in a baptist or presbyterian church. (depending on if you still want to baptize babies or not). But if you’re interested in TRUE doctrine, like you say, you could do alot worse than LCMS. All the things you mentioned have clear biblical precedent and teaching- and may require you doing some study WITH a spiritual father, like a pastor. But you sound more interested in being your own pope, so to speak.” I’m laughing so hard that tears are running down my face!

  44. I think Martin Luther would say, “Tis most certainly true,” although his doctrine and that of the LS and Calvinists is most certainly false. The Calvinists might say that the bilateral contract is most certainly false, but they still won’t be able to justify that their belief system is correct. It seems to me that the bilateral contract is like a two lane highway with one person going one way and another going the opposite way. Passing is risky, and sometimes there are lines on the road that say, “No passing zone.” That’s meant for your own safety, and passing could result in cataclysmic consequences. Thus it is with the bilateral contract. Sometimes people can be going in the same direction at various speeds. If you catch up to the person in front of you on the two lane highway and they are going slower than you like, you might try to pass them, but then you risk getting hit head on by a car coming from the other direction. Thus it is with the bilateral contract. It’s dangerous and can have fatal consequences.

  45. One thing I’m curious about. I would like to know how the Lsers, particularly the TULIP LSers, see this. I have a suspicion that they do not interpret their teaching as a bi-lateral contract and would come back with “Oh no. You’ve got it all wrong. Salvation is all of God. We contribute nothing so it is not a bi-lateral contract at all.” However, that would do nothing to satisfy the fact that the hearer of their gospel has no knowledge whatsoever of the Calvinistic system to which the purveyor of the gospel subscribes that interprets his teaching in a way that discounts the bi-lateral contract accusation. So, in spite of their insistence that it is no such thing (which is what I think they would say), in the ears of their hearer, it most certainly IS exactly such a thing. John proved this for us. How do they account for this, I wonder?

    JanH

  46. John and Jack:

    I am intrigued by the designation of lordship salvation teaching as a form of bilateral contract. I had never really considered it before from that vantage point. I went to several legal encyclopedias to look up the meaning of “bilateral contract.” The consistent “nutshell” definition was, “A contract in which there is an exchange of a promise for a promise.” I thought, yes, that definition really fits lordship salvation to a tee. In fact, lordship salvation is sometimes called, “commitment salvation” or “PROMISE salvation.”

    Upon accepting the premise above as a fitting analogy, then, I came to the next logical question: If lordship salvation is in practice a form of a legally binding bilateral contract, then, under this false theological construct known as lordship salvation, what is the penalty for a breach of contract (in the following hypothetical scenarios, Party A would represent the lordship salvation adherent; Party B would represent God)?

    Two possible scenarios—in each case, Party A makes profuse promises of a lifetime of totally committed living for God in exchange for Party B’s promise to give him, in exchange, eternal life one day (we assume that only party A is capable of breaching the contract since God would never lie or fail to fulfill a promise that he made).

    1. Party A fails substantially to live up to his promise, living mostly a life characterized by sin. Party B is released from any legal contractural obligation; eternal life is denied.
    2. Party A largely fulfills his part of the contract but does so imperfectly in a few areas. Contractural mitigation may occur. Party B may or may not deny eternal life. Party A will not know the final result of the contract until after his death.

    So you see the completely unbiblical, nonsensical, false nature of this unholy works-based religious system called “lordship salvation.” It totally denies God’s biblical plan of salvation by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone (Ephesians 2:8-9; John 3:16; Acts 16:30-31). It denies the eternality of ETERNAL life as well as the “keeping” power of God of his children (John 10:27-30). Furthermore, lordship salvation destroys assurance of faith for any and all [including its leaders] who follow its teachings.

    Thanks for prodding me to see things in a new light.

    Bruce

  47. Hi friends,

    Just home from working all day and I discovered this fine conversation going on; I really came in at the tail end of it.

    Marcella, thanks for the questions; they were all worth addressing. And the folks here never mind responding to them. Keep the questions coming.

    Jan, John and Jack, you all answered Marcella’s concerns well, so I would just be repeating your clear answers to add anything at all.

  48. Thanks, Jack and Jan! There’s alot that I am learning. I also still have some fear of becoming deceived again, so thanks for bearing with me! God bless you!

  49. Err, yeah. What Jack said. 🙂

    JanH

  50. What do you all think of this?
    “Fellowship and Filling of the Holy Spirit We believe, however, that our fellowship with God (1st John 1:3), and the filling of the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 5:18), are not automatic products of salvation, but are dependent on our moment by moment walk with Christ.”

    By filling he does not mean indwelling. Shea believes in eternal security and that the Holy Spirit comes to permanently indwell a person the moment he/she believes. By filling he means by what power you are operating, either the flesh or the Spirit. He believes that unconfessed sin disrupts our fellowship with the Father and confession restores it, and that we cannot be walking in the power of the Holy Spirit if there is known sin we are actively engaging in. At that point we are walking in the power of the flesh, grieving and/or quenching the Spirit Who then ministers His work of convicting us of the sin that grieves Him. This is rectified by confession of the sin the Spirit convicts us of.

    JanH

  51. Marcella,

    Your questions suggest a whole new sermon… 😎

    I can’t speak for Shea but I will try to explain what I think he means by his statement (or what I believe).

    When we trust Jesus Christ as Savior, we are instantly indwelt and sealed eternally by God’s Holy Spirit — forever.

    Paul to the Ephesian Church speaking of believing/trusting in Christ:
    “In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,” Ephesians 1:13 [Sealed with the Holy Spirit is God’s private mark of ownership – you belong to Him]

    “That good thing which was committed unto thee keep by the Holy Ghost which dwelleth in us.” [Dwelling is Inhabiting] 2 Timothy 1:14

    To be filled by/with the Holy Spirit is to be guided/controlled by Him and obedient. Upon belief, we have instant fellowship access to the Lord — and obedience to Him brings good fellowship but disobedience brings strained fellowship but never a loss of salvation.

    The LS folks try to put this obedience as a part and parcel of salvation.. without obedience, they say, you are not or can not be saved.

    An explanatory comparative verse:
    Ephes. 5:18
    And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled [controlled or influenced] with the Spirit;
    For example, being drunk is to be controlled by wine so rather, be controlled by God’s indwelling Holy Spirit.

    So Shea’s statements are correct, though without some explanation might be confusing unless it has been studied. His accurate argument is that obedience brings good fellowship in our walk with the Lord.

    Will try to visit Shea’s site tomorrow.

    In Jesus Christ eternally, Jack

  52. Jack, thanks for that Duluth Bible Church website.

    Jan, I prayed a prayer and asked Jesus into my heart, thinking that’s what people did to get saved. It wasn’t until this year that I realized I probably had a false conversion and wasn’t really saved. I was raised Lutheran, so for 29 years, I believed that since I was baptized as an infant, I was saved. Then I heard a preacher say baptism doesn’t save you, and it really rattled me. I prayed that “sinner’s prayer” 12 years ago, but still had doubts about being saved, so I prayed that prayer many times over the next two years. Sometimes I still find myself doubting. Then I read my Bible, and verses such as this give me hope: “For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 8:38-39)

    Glory to God!

  53. What do you all think of this?
    “Fellowship and Filling of the Holy Spirit We believe, however, that our fellowship with God (1st John 1:3), and the filling of the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 5:18), are not automatic products of salvation, but are dependent on our moment by moment walk with Christ.”

    This is part of Clear Gospel’s doctrinal belief.

    http://www.cleargospel.org/statement.php?label=doctrinal&c_id=349

    I’ve been reading much of this website, and I disagree with alot of it. I believe that when a person becomes saved, he/she is automatically filled with the Holy Spirit. It’s not “dependent upon our moment by moment walk with Christ,” as Clear Gospel claims. How is fellowship with God dependent upon our moment by moment walk with Christ? This is confusing! “Clear Gospel” isn’t so clear now, is it?!

    Also note Section 2 Election. It’s not clear whether or not Ron Shea believes in election. I also don’t know why there are so many extra characters in the text on this website. Those chimes drive me crazy, too, and when you go to Clear Gospel’s website, you will know what I’m talking about!

    Does Ron Shea believe in eternal security? I haven’t seen anything about that on his website.

  54. Jan, I knew that trust in Christ was necessary, but I thought I had to “do my part”. I consulted a minister on the matter when I was a young man. I told him that I believed that Jesus died on the cross to save us from our sins. The minister said “even the demons believe and they tremble.” He told me that it wasn’t enough to believe, that you had to repent of your sins and commit to follow Jesus, or something like that. It has been almost 25 years, so I don’t remember exactly. But, if you look up the statement of faith for his denomination, it contains that type of content. See Jack’s post called “Who Makes these Errors:

  55. What I mean is, they rightly insist that you don’t get saved by praying a prayer or walking an aisle, etc. We, of course, would heartily agree with that. In fact, I have encountered people who do get very confused on this point. This happens a lot with Catholics. They will hear a “pray this prayer” gospel presentation and say, “I’ve said lots of prayers in my life but I’ve never said THAT prayer.” And they say a prayer and there is no faith in it. They are just parroting what they heard. This is obviously unsaving. They are no better off than they were before, but they said the magic prayer and now they think they will go to heaven when they die. It’s just another ritual, and one easily dispensed with (hence, “easy believism.” Nevermind that there is no believe in this ism.)

    However, the LSers will then say you get saved not by looking to Christ crucified for your salvation and trusting that His death satisfies the Father’s wrath against you, but by committing your life to Christ. But we would say you get saved by eating His flesh and drinking His blood — believing He died in your place and trusting His death for your reconciliation with the Father.

    But because the LSers say commit your life instead of clearly saying trust His sacrifice, there may just be no believe in their “hard believism” either.

    That’s what it sounds like. (?)

    JanH

  56. I spent most of my adult life trying to relive history trying to determine whether I had completely committed my life to Christ at the time I was “saved” and therefore, whether or not I was really saved. I was looking to myself for assurance of salvation – not Christ.

    I was not saved until I quit trusting in myself for salvation and put my faith in Christ alone.

    John-

    So due to your exposure to the LS gospel, you understood from the get go that even though Christ died for your sins that trust was not sufficient to get you into heaven? And the reason you struggled all those years was because in actuality, you really didn’t believe in Christ alone for salvation when you made whatever decision it was you made initially? Thus, it wasn’t until you got all these issues settled that you were able to see/understand and believe Christ crucified alone and it was at this later time you were saved? In other words, even though the cross was preached to you (I assume), you were to do something other than, or in addition to, believing this and that was where your confidence/faith/trust ended up?

    Because that reminds me of how the LSers will contrast what they say you must do to be saved with such things as praying a prayer or walking an aisle, or raising a hand, or something similar but then substitute another self generated (I realize they don’t think it’s self generated, at least the TULIP guys don’t) response that theoretically only those serious about salvation would do, which is bow to Jesus as Lord. The cross kind of gets kicked to the curb after it’s presented, if it is presented at all. It is certainly not the specific thing one is called on to deal with.

    What did you understand you were supposed to do with the message of Christ’s cross? How did this LS teaching impact your understanding of it, and your relationship to it?

    JanH

  57. Marcella,

    I see the article mentioned above at Duluth Bible Church is Part 6 — so you may have to search the previous year to get all parts to the entire document. Well worth the effort.

    In Jesus eternally, Jack

  58. Marcella,

    Don’t believe everything that Free-Grace Blogspot has to say.

    The author is Antonio DaRosa, a gentleman with whom I have some serious disagreements, so much so I had to block his access to our web site. I believe he is one of the supposed “Free Grace” proponents who have been classified as promoting a “Crossless Gospel” and a member of Bob Wilkin’s Grace Evangelical Society.

    Go to Duluth Bible Church.. a great Grace Church and download their PDF on “The Tragedy of the Crossless Gospel.”
    http://www.duluthbible.org/331965.ihtml

    Their web site is a great resource for all things Grace.

    In Jesus Christ eternally, Jack

  59. Marcella,

    You have a good point. I see further explanation is necessary. Thanks John for your help.

    The Uni-Lateral (One Person) contract is an agreement that God promised and fulfilled in Jesus Christ apart from any doing or commitment on our part. It requires neither promising nor signing any contract on our part but simply accepting God’s promise of Eternal Life by personally believing that what He has done in Jesus Christ on the Cross was for me/you personally.

    No signature necessary — nothing but a mental assent to accept/believe God’s provision, which is salvation by Grace alone through Faith alone in Christ alone..

    Sorry if the legal terminology was confusing.

    In Jesus Christ eternally, Jack

  60. For anyone who is interested, below is the link to Clear Gospel Campaign. I don’t think free grace advocates will find much objectionable about this site:
    http://www.cleargospel.org/

  61. Marcella, I didn’t sign a contract to get saved either. I believe salvation is by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone.

    The point equating LS with “bi-lateral” contract salvation is that LS is, in essence, a promise of future works for salvation. That is, it mixes grace with works. By adding conditions to salvation,such as the willingness to turn from sin, or committing to follow Christ, LS advocates introduce the promise of future works of righteousness into the mix, thereby perverting grace.

  62. I’m not sure what this bi-lateral and unilateral contract you are talking about is, Jack and John, but I don’t accept it. When I got saved, I didn’t sign or agree to a contract with the Lord. As you have preached, Jack, salvation is FREE! We are saved by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone. We don’t need to sign a contract or agreement with God in order to reserve a place in Heaven. Where does the concept of a “unilateral contract” fit in here? It doesn’t.

    I looked up some information on Ron Shea because I never heard of him, and this is what I found. Hopefully this is a biblical website:

    http://free-grace.blogspot.com/2008/03/open-letter-to-free-grace-alliance.html

    According to this, Shea is a member of the Free Grace Alliance (FGA). It says, “Ron Shea is a member of the FGA and is actively seeking to bring members of the Free Grace community into disrepute by accusing them of willful, systematic, deceptive, and grievous sins.” I don’t know whether or not that statement is true, and I have never heard of the FGA, so it would take some time to research these sometime. I won’t do it now. Instead, I’ll pray about it and read my Bible.

  63. John,

    You rightly said, “in their zeal to create committed disciples, they distorted the Gospel itself. One wonders if many of them even understand the Gospel. They may mention Grace in passing but have no real understanding of it.

    I recall while in Bible College, (in my early 40s) some of the younger students, in their misplaced zeal, expressed a reluctance to emphasize preaching Grace for fear it would be misunderstood as preaching a “license to sin.” Of course if God’s Word is preached clearly, that is easily countered by Scripture.

    In Jesus Christ eternally, Jack

  64. Jack, I was raised in churches that taught that eternal life was eternal, however, they also included in their denominational statement of faith both turning from your sins and committing to follow Christ to become saved.

    I don’t think eternal security is consistent with having to turn from your sins and commit to follow Christ in order to become saved. One who is taught this perversion of Grace would look to himself for evidence of faithfulness, rather than looking to the only One who we can count on to always be faithful – Jesus.

    The irony is, that in their zeal to create committed disciples, they distorted the Gospel itself.

  65. John,

    Thanks so much. Your statements are not rambling but very cogent and from the heart.

    The conclusion is that you understand the lie that is Lordship “salvation” and you certainly express yourself very well about it. Thanks for joining our fellowship here.

    Your testimony also illustrates how terrible it is that too many “churches” and “pastors” no longer teach the truth that Eternal Life is indeed ETERNAL in Jesus Christ.

    One of my many favorite Bible verses:
    “And be found in Him [Christ], not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith:” Philippians 3:9

    In Jesus Christ eternally, Jack

  66. Jack, great job of describing bi-lateral contract “salvation”. I got the term from Clear Gospel Campaign. The Gospel booklet that Ron Shea authored has an appendix called “The Four Perversions of Grace” that includes the term.

    The interesting conundrum for LS advocates would be this:

    If you accept LS, and you have never exercised faith alone in Christ alone, have you rejected Christ? That is, if one is putting any confidence in his turning from sin, commitment to Christ, love of Christ, following Christ or anything other than faith in Christ for salvation, is he adding works to faith?

    I think the answer is yes. I spent most of my adult life trying to relive history trying to determine whether I had completely committed my life to Christ at the time I was “saved” and therefore, whether or not I was really saved. I was looking to myself for assurance of salvation – not Christ.

    I was not saved until I quit trusting in myself for salvation and put my faith in Christ alone.

    My path to the truth started with trying to decide between competing opinions on eternal security. I was led to the inescapable conclusion that eternal life is eternal. Then, it became evident to me that if one could not work his way out of salvation, one could not work himself into salvation.

    If the prodigal son, who was clearly already saved, was not faithful or committed in any way before he came home, how could an unsaved person be required to turn from his sins and commit before he could be saved.

    If Paul and James felt the need to exhort believers to Christian living and good works, how could those things be automatic in the lives of believers?

    LS is a bankrupt legalistic counterfeit of Christianity.

    Sorry for rambling.

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