Lordship Salvation: No Thanksgiving

By johninnc

Romans 6:23: For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

The Bible describes eternal life as the gift of God.

Those who have received eternal life by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone can be thankful that they have received that gift.

2 Corinthians 9:15: Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift.

However, much of professing Christendom undermines the truth of God’s word by teaching the pernicious lie of Lordship “salvation.”

Lordship “salvation” (LS) is the unsupportable and unbiblical belief that the PERFORMANCE of good works, the PROMISE of good works, or the EVIDENCE of good works MUST accompany faith in Christ in order to establish, or provide evidence, that such faith has resulted in eternal life

We have heard and read countless comments from people, ranging from prominent “men of God” to unknown laypeople that promote or reflect the lie of Lordship “salvation.” Following are just a few examples:

However, good and bad deeds will prove an individual’s faith. If good deeds aren’t there, it proves faith isn’t present. These people face eternal judgment. If good deeds are there, it proves faith is present and they are granted eternal resurrection life. David Chadwick, Pastor of Forrest Hills Church, Charlotte

Although I don’t agree with the heresy of Lordship Salvation, I don’t agree with you either. I have been a fan of Stewart’s website and I’m so sure that he does NOT teach the crap of Lordship Salvation. Stewart is right, stop falsely accusing him. Stewart is saying that forsaking one’s sin is NOT the prerequisites of salvation, but the fruits of salvation. We don’t forsake our sins in order to be saved, indeed we forsake our sins because we ARE saved! – Commenter to the ExPreacherman site.

Another proof of the conquest of a soul for Christ will be found in a real change of life. If the man does not live differently from what he did before, both at home and abroad, his repentance needs to be repented of, and his conversion is a fiction. – 19th Century Preacher Charles Spurgeon

The Bible says to examine yourselves whether you be in the faith. What’s to examine since you deny the usage of any outward evidence or what you call “fruit inspection? – Commenter to the ExPreacherman site.

I am afraid that many Christians, in their zeal to share their faith in Christ, have made the Gospel message of making disciples for Him too simple. Just to say “believe in Christ” can produce a false assurance of the hope of Heaven. Jesus spoke often about the gift of eternal life. To make it clear, He said, “Count the cost.” – Billy Graham

I have watched and listened to Paul Washer, Tim Conway, and John MacArthur for three years now, and you are mistaken. They teach the free gift of salvation – by grace through faith in JESUS CHRIST are ye saved!!! They teach that once you are saved, you will be led by the HOLY SPIRIT unto good works, and you will want to deny yourself, pick up your cross and follow JESUS CHRIST!!! – Commenter to the ExPreacherman site.

There are two types of “faith” described in the Bible. One is a dead faith that originates in man as he gives mental assent to certain truths about God, but it produces no evidence of a new life in Christ (James 2:17). The other is a God-given faith which includes being born again as a new creature in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17). This is a living faith that is coupled with repentance (Acts 11:18). It flows out of a new heart that desires to bear fruit for God’s Glory (Ezekiel 36:26; John 15:8). – Mike Gendron

Questions: do you believe assenting to a set of facts about something is the same as acting on those facts personally? IOW, can one assent to facts on something and not act on it personally? Hope I’m making it clear. What about the devils? The Bible says they believe and tremble. What kind of belief would you call that since they obviously aren’t going to heaven. – Commenter to the ExPreacherman site.


How can any of the above comments point one to thankfulness for the gift of eternal life? After all, each one of them reflects a false belief that eternal life is dependent to some extent on one’s own effort. Where is the thanks in that?

The Bible says that anyone who has believed in Jesus as Savior has eternal life that can never be lost or forfeited. The Bible also says that anyone who has believed in Jesus as Savior can be assured that he has eternal life. If one had to wait to see whether the works manifest themselves to know he has eternal life, then he could never really have assurance.

There is joy and thanksgiving with knowing that one has received the free gift of eternal life by grace through faith in Christ.

Conversely, there is no thanksgiving with Lordship “salvation,” because its purpose is to undermine the very concept of eternal life being the gift of God.

If you would like to know more about how to have eternal life click here: The Gospel

42 responses to “Lordship Salvation: No Thanksgiving

  1. Holly, exactly. Believing (or faith) isn’t the gift of God, or anyone else.

  2. Johninnc, with that kind of thinking by that pastor of the YMCA it is definitely rightly wishful.

  3. Jason, I agree. I don’t trust so-called church history any more than I trust he media’s depiction of current events.

  4. Holly, the quote that you referenced came from a pastor of a church that has sponsored/coopted the YMCA where I work out.

    The Christmas tree at that YMCA had large decorations that said “Wishing You the Gift of Believing.”

  5. Loadship is everywhere and every when. The history is overwhelming. The natural man reasons that the gospel is so disconnected from history that it cannot be true. It is tradition.

  6. As I wait for Jason to wake up, I was re-reading this quote:

    However, good and bad deeds will prove an individual’s faith. If good deeds aren’t there, it proves faith isn’t present. These people face eternal judgment. If good deeds are there, it proves faith is present and they are granted eternal resurrection life. David Chadwick, Pastor of Forrest Hills Church, Charlotte

    It brought me back to an old letter a past friend showed me by her grandmother. Somehow I ran across it recently on my computer. She had told me how they believed on repent from sin, and for a long time she called Jack a heretic and declared the gospel included repent from sin. She repented for awhile, but then she repented again and went back to saying that IF you were truly saved, you would show it by your works.

    So sad when I read that letter. Her father was a pastor who worried about his salvation until he died. I wonder if he ever knew the truth or had been in bondage. Her grandmother’s letter said something like thank you Gracious Lord for inviting me to the wedding supper, and ended up with, I hope to be there on time.

    Sadly this woman doesn’t realize how she has fallen into the same wrong thinking and don’t know if she ever understood the truth. What an awful way to end up. And even worse to find out after you died, that you had trusted in your works plus Jesus.

  7. God refresh and bless us all with discernment from the strong meat in His Word. May that be what we eat of.

  8. I thought you’d say that

  9. Being a picky eater spiritually is a good thing.

  10. This story was slightly different. Someone dresses up as a ghost for both Halloween and Christmas, threatens trick or treat, sings carols in exchange for a gift, and he turns out to be a Vietnamese refugee.

    I am a picky eater, and last year, I have become a picky eater spiritually. The story had no point. It was confusing. I got more out of cheesy 1980’s superhero cartoons than from this story. And this is supposed to be church.

  11. Jason, the sermon sounds like something from Charles Dickens “A Christmas Carol.” Scrooge finds redemption by promising to “keep Christmas.”

  12. I was in an awkward situation. I would have avoided church, but my mom wanted me to attend in order to meet a man who wanted to see my resume.

    The church service did not make me feel saved unconditionally by grace. It was more about warm, fuzzy feelings than the gospel. On that point, mom says she agrees. Two thirds of the carols made mention of the heart. The sermon was too short and consisted of a ghost story without redeeming value. It was titled, Christmas Comes Knocking. Harry Connick’s “When My Heart Finds Christmas” would have fit the theme perfectly.

    The communion service made me uncomfortable. Both elements were served at once. The liturgy was not from the Bible. The word “remembrance” was never used even once. Language about eternal life and spiritual sacrifice was present. It felt worse than a Latin mass. I did not partake. My mom tells me this is not what they meant. In these confusing times, language of “real presence” is crossing denominations into territory where it was nonexistent. Even Baptists are now using it. No Eucharist to that.

    When the man talked to me, and I tried to share him the gospel, he says he agrees with me that it is not of ourselves. But then he adds this stunning statement: “Christ compels me to help you”. I wasn’t comfortable with that. I could not say anything but to shake his hand and wish him a merry Christmas.

    In retrospect, I think I should have avoided church and asked to meet him another time. Church is not for business purposes. I wish I could persuade my mom to join me in not attending. What I experienced was an Emergent Christmas, and it was not of God.

  13. Yes Holly we are surrounded by wolves in sheeps clothing, its selfianity rather than true christianity its all about me and not what Jesus did on the cross, so tired of it all.

  14. They also redefine eternal life as something other than peaceful existence with God that goes on forever. They make life a substance, especially in the deeper life movement.

  15. Mary, I have often thought the same about that common denominator or glue. It is about being the ‘chosen’. Proven by how good you are. They all love the same passages as ‘proof’ you belong to their group (James 2 is a classic). They all define repent as either turn from sin, or turn from your ways, or a ‘real heart change that results in a change in action’ etc. They do clever ‘social work’ like stand against abortion and make touching videos which redefine eternal life while standing for the life of innocents. Makes it difficult for people to think something isn’t wrong with them.

    They look kindly like Billy or Franklin Graham. Respectable, standing for ‘values’ and standing against immorality. But they are still wolves who get the gospel wrong and are accursed. Very sad for them and those who hear them.

  16. Johninnc- you rightly said, ‘what is really amazing to me is how many people who teach back door LS act like they have reached some spiritual “breakthrough” that we have never before heard.’

    Yes, and they act as if all the ones they know have also arrived at that sweet spot and we are just greasy gracers. Oh how I despise that term, but not for the reason they believe.

  17. Brady, the thief on the cross should be a powerful answer to people who are insistent on works for salvation. But, I have had a couple people counter that with LS-type arguments. One said that the thief’s public confession of belief to Christ was a good work, and another said that he guaranteed if the thief on the cross would have lived another 30 years, he would have been a changed man – not perfect, but definitely changed. The latter did not specify the nature or extent of the hypothetical change that he had guaranteed.

    Tom Cucuzza did a great sermon called “There’s Room at the Cross for You.” Tom makes the point that the thief on the cross was a type for all who are saved, because all of us were condemned before we believed. The sermon is linked below:


  18. We who believe in the simplicity that is in Christ need to be vocal. Tell the truth in love. The gospel according to Jesus is not complicated. When the criminal asked Jesus to remember him, Jesus could have said, “Well it’s more complicated than that” or “are you willing to repent from all of your sins”? But Jesus accepted his humble request. Why? Because he believed. He did not even have a chance to show evidence of fruit. He just believed. Lordship Salvationist do NOT have scripture on their side.

  19. Mary, I agree with Lordship (works) being the common denominator for the world’s religions.

  20. Yes Johnnic, when they say BUT or HOWEVER run as they are not on the same page, this is where satan has been so successful in his subtleties.

  21. Yes its very lonely out there not many of us at all, I guess if you look throughout history even in the dark ages there was only ever a small believing remnant.

    We do now question every teacher out there, we have been called cultish because we preach this grace gospel. All the self-righteouss works salvationist hate our message and the freedom and liberty we have.

    Lordship is the glue that is bringing all the denominations under Rome.

  22. Sam, I agree that they seem like decent people. However, I know Franklin Graham is front-door LS. He wrote the forward to one of John MacArthur’s editions of “The Gospel According to Jesus”

    Falwell’s church shows up on the SBC (LS) “Church Search,” and has a “Spurgeon Building.”

    Jeffress is also a pastor at an SBC church.

  23. I see franklin graham ,jeff jeffress,jerry falwall jr.on tv occasionally on fox news all seem like really nice people and agree with a lot of what they talk about.Always wonder about where they stand on the gospel but i would guess it is a backloaded salvation message.Im like frying pan dont know anybody but some family members thst really believe salvation is by faith alone.Always enjoy reading this blog thanks John

  24. Holly, what is really amazing to me is how many people who teach back door LS act like they have reached some spiritual “breakthrough” that we have never before heard.

    I can almost write their false statements in my sleep. They usually start out with phrases such as “I’m not saying that you have to do good works to become saved,” “I believe salvation is by grace alone,” or “(choose false teacher) does teach salvation by grace through faith.” Those are usually followed with “but,” “and,” or “however.”

    If these “broken records” do provide “support” for their false teaching, it is either by providing quotes from other, more famous false teachers, or by misusing scripture by taking it out of context and misinterpreting it.

  25. Johninnc, great article, simple but straightforward (as usual). JesusisSavior, loves Spurgeon and won’t let go of his anointed (and of course that leads to the backdoor loadship) along with Calvinism as much as he might deny it.

  26. Brady, my in-laws were Mormon, by Brother-in-law a Mormon seminarian. Saddest thing is they preach another Jesus and actually another gospel even though they will declare (much like all we know) that they believe in the work of Jesus on the cross. It’s just that they don’t believe WHO He is, and what it actually accomplished, which is why they have all the rules and regulations to belong in their very tight community. I know many ‘Jack’ Mormons who uphold it amongst their peers but it’s different when they are among non-Mormons. There is also ‘black listing’ and that includes businesses in their communities that don’t adhere to their standards. One thing they do is protect (usually) their children from most worldly things, except oddly they host worldly music dancing to bring in kids from the world to their ‘church’. Much to understand about that religion, but one thing is that ‘As man is, so God was, and as God is, so shall man become’. They believe that Jesus became a God by not sinning and is the half-brother of Satan, and that they too will become gods on their own planets with their wives. They also believe they were preincarnate.

  27. I have had the misfortune of having a friend recommend Andrew Murray. I never got around to it.

  28. Mary, I would stay away from Andrew Murray. Anyone who embraces Calvinism will no doubt have errant theology that will not line up with what the Scriptures teach.

  29. Is there a deeper life, or is there only a holy life and an unholy life? Does a Christian need a deeper life, or is eternal life enough?

  30. Mary, I am not familiar with Andrew Murray, although I had heard of him in connection with the “deeper life” movement.

  31. Wondering if someone knows if Andrew Murray, the dutch reformist was sound, some people said to read his books which i did many years ago, not really understanding the clarity of the gospel as I do now, i was told that there is healing in the Atonement and about the second blessing, which i thought where all pentecostal doctrines, but if he was a reformer was he a Calvanist.

    Can someone shed some light on this man. He really stresses living the deeper life and holiness, I’m not so sure these are biblical doctrines, I’m sure a lot of us would of read his books years ago when we first became christians.

  32. William, very good analogy regarding the weight set.

  33. In refuting Lordship Salvation aka Loadship Damnation, a person can be eternally SAVED today by believing on the finished work of Christ on the cross and tomorrow be involved in a tragic car accident that leaves the person permanently paralyzed full body for the rest of his life where the person cannot do any “good works”, but still be eternally saved.

    A person can also have a complete weight set in his possession as a gift from someone, but how will that weight set “profit” his physique and muscles if he never works out? (James 2:14, 16) The weight set is in his possession as a gift, but he won’t lose it if he never uses it.

  34. Jason, very good points.

  35. If lack of works is proof of lack of faith, and works are proof of faith, then what about the pagan who does good works? Does that pagan prove that he had saving faith even though he never heard about Jesus? Or do the works merely prove that he has a conscience and is without excuse? Some lordshippers are fans of the notion that salvation is possible without hearing. Lordship used to distract my thoughts in that direction.

  36. Fryingpan, the way I found this website was randomly one day doing a google search “Tim Conway false”. That brought me to a post on this website.

    I had been watching a lot of his sermons at the time, but had a slight curiosity as to whether what I was hearing from him was true or not.

    One of the most important google searches I ever made, that’s for sure.

  37. Fryingpan, its great to hear from you.

    I agree that people who are clear on the gospel can be hard to find.

    The inspiration for this article came from another couple we know who are clear on the gospel. One of them told us about a thanksgiving video issued by Forrest Hils Church, that talked about being thankful for all kinds of day-to-day things, while the pastor of the church undermines the gospel.

    And yeah, it’s not the funny Tim Conway. There’s nothing funny about LS.

  38. Great article, johninnc!

    Wow. Tim Conway . . . definitely not the one from the Carol Burnett show. That guy is HARD.TO.WATCH. He was part of the rogues gallery that brought me to seek out this website in the first place!

    A bit of an aside, but this website really IS an oasis of grace.

    I’ve been reading and commenting here for well over 4 and a half years now and other than one friend and my wife I have yet to find ONE PERSON who professes to believe in Christ for their salvation that believes the true gospel.

    They ALL believe in some form of Calvinism or LS. I’d say, “It’s unbelievable” but that would be disingenuous on my part.

    Not sure where I’m going with this. I just want to get it off my chest because I know this blog is not set up in such a way as one can just post a random comment.

    Keep up the good work. I’m grateful to those who WILL listen.

  39. Jonah 2:9b Salvation is of the LORD.

    Ephesians 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:

    Salvation is NOT of ourselves. Salvation is of the LORD.

  40. I apologize for the misunderstanding!

  41. Brady, your comment caused me to go back and clarify the article. The comments that I quoted were not from Jack Weaver, the late founder of the Expreacherman site. They were from commenters to the Expreacherman site, who have expressed false LS beliefs.

    And, you are correct that it is God’s will that believers do good works.

  42. This was a breath of fresh air! I am also shocked that ex-preacherman actually said the quotes that were in your article. I follow ex-preacherman and this certainly does not sound like him at all. But I find that many of the leaders in the Lordship Salvation camp seem very confused at times based on what I have read. Common sense tells me that a free gift is a free gift and if my effort is somehow a pre-requisite to receiving a free gift or maintaining that free gift then it is NOT a free gift. And they seem to be confused as to what “faith alone in Christ alone” really means. I think it means just what it says – “faith alone in Christ alone”, but some will ADD that, “faith alone is never alone” (which is nowhere to be found in the Bible).

    A few years ago I was reading Chan’s book “Crazy Love” and realized something was missing. I could not put my finger on what was missing at the time. but today I can. It was missing the Gospel of Grace. It was missing the “Good News”. I was also reading one of John Piper’s books around the same time but can’t remember the name of it. I had to put his book down too because again something was missing. I find that I much of the literature produced by Lordship Salvationist is missing the “Good News”. To me, this is very sad! I do not question their hearts or their salvation but at some point they became confused.

    During my coaching career I coached many different types of kids. During my stint as a football coach in South Texas I had the privilege of coaching several Mormon kids. These kids were the hardest working and committed kids I ever coached. Many of them were up long before our 7:00 am practice praying and reading their version of the Bible. They were incredibly honest and had very few observable character flaws. I would say the way in which they lived their lives would put Chan and Piper to shame. But my point is this: If our salvation is about faith plus works and our own efforts then Mormons win hands down. But you would never hear Piper, Chan, or Kirk Cameron say that Mormons are saved. I am not a Mormon and I do not know the fate of Mormons. But, the Bible makes is very clear that our faith apart from works is what saves us. If we believe that our own efforts are good enough to get us into Heaven then we are still on our own one yard line – no further along toward the entrance into the goal line of God’s Kingdom.

    So thank you John for exposing the heresy of Lordship Salvation. We have much to be grateful for today because God has given all of us the free gift of salvation to those of us who humble ourselves enough to receive this free gift. But it does not end there. God has a plan for us to do good works (Ephesians 2:10) and if we do not then our faith is useless. But the free gift of eternal salvation is never in dispute.