Lordship Salvation: Twenty Questions

By johninnc

I have been making note of search terms that people have used that have brought them to Expreacherman. I thought I would share twenty of the questions, along with my short answers in bold.

  1. Is Francis Chan a false teacher? Yes.
  2. Is JD Greear a false teacher? Yes.
  3. Is salvation permanent? Yes.
  4. Was John Calvin really a believer? We can’t know that. We know he was a false teacher.
  5. Is the grace gospel true? Yes.
  6. What did Calvin teach? Calvinism, which is a false gospel of works.
  7. Did Billy Graham believe in Lordship salvation? We can’t know that. We know he taught Lordship salvation.
  8. Are Lordship salvation teachers saved? We can’t know that. We know they are under God’s curse (Galatians 1:8-9).
  9. Do works salvationists go to hell? Yes, if they have never trusted in Christ alone as Savior. No, if they have ever trusted in Christ alone as Savior.
  10. Does the Assembly of God Church teach Lordship salvation? They teach works for salvation.
  11. What is a five point Spurgeonist? A false teacher of salvation by works.
  12. Does Paul Washer teach Lordship salvation? Yes.
  13. Is Lordship salvation reformed? Yes.
  14. Is salvation by grace false doctrine? No.
  15. Can a professed Christian lose or forfeit his or her salvation? A Christian, professed or otherwise, cannot lose or forfeit eternal life.
  16. What does Kyle Idleman teach? A false gospel of salvation by works.
  17. Great preachers who believe in Lordship salvation? While we can never know what anyone believes, there is no such thing as a great preacher who preaches Lordship salvation.
  18. How many times is the word “hope” written in the Bible? By my count, the word “hope” appears 142 times in the KJV.
  19. How can people be so deceived as to believe in Calvinism? Because they believe the words of men over the word of God.
  20. Changed life necessary for salvation? No.

As you can see from the above questions, people are searching for the truth, and we are fortunate that some of them end up here at Expreacherman. Following is an appeal we made as part of an article published a few months back. I would ask our readers and commenters to once again reflect on it:

I join you in asking God to bless this ministry. I pray that those who come here who know Jesus as Savior will seek to honor God with their posts, that we will be faithful to Him and His word, that we will comfort and encourage one another, that we will be bold in proclaiming and defending the gospel, that we will be gentle and wise, that we won’t become confused with the wisdom of men, and that we will not allow our comments to become sidetracked with unimportant things.

Also, I pray that those who come here who are seeking truth, and do not know Jesus as Savior, would hear/read and understand the gospel message.

If you would like to know how to have eternal life, please click here: The Gospel

52 responses to “Lordship Salvation: Twenty Questions

  1. Tertullian

    I always find it interesting when people slam you for supposedly slamming someone, say you have a false gospel but won’t share it.

    We do not have to be baptized as a child in order to be saved (John Calvin taught that).

    We have to believe on Jesus (who He is) and what He has done for us (Christ and Him crucified). Tertullian was Augustine’s predecessor, who was the father of Calvinism and Catholicism basically. Luther’s 95 theses had nothing to do with Christianity although many wrongly think so.

    Hopefully you’ll do further research into these men’s errors, and murderous hatred for others.

  2. Tertullian, thanks for swinging by.

    Calvin was a false teacher who taught Calvinism as opposed to the true gospel.

  3. John Calvin preached Jesus and justification by faith (as did Luther). You are slamming great theologians who far exceed your pathetic and shallow understanding of the Gospel. SHAME ON YOU!

  4. John WI, being a follower seems to be this ‘look at me, I am a follower and you are not’.

    Believers should become followers, but followers can absolutely not be believers (John 8:31-32; John 6:64-66).

  5. I notice that a lot of statements of faith are cut and paste jobs. They even mix and mash grace and LS elements without a thought.

  6. JohnWI, the first red flag in that SOF is “receive Jesus as Lord and Savior.”

    We actually receive the Lord Jesus as Savior. The expression “receive Jesus as Lord and Savior” often implies that one must make Jesus Lord of his life or some other such commitment connotation in order to receive eternal life.

    We did an article on the whole “Christ follower” thing a while back. Please see below:

    https://expreacherman.com/2015/03/22/christ-follower-or-false-gospel-swallower/

  7. I was looking at a churches SOF in my area, and came across this: “At the moment we receive Jesus as Lord and Savior, the Holy Spirit places each new Christ – follower in union with Christ, and in community with the family of God, also known as the body of Christ, His church. There is one true universal church, comprised of all true Christ – followers.”
    I know when I trusted Christ to be my Savior, that moment I became a child of God. Now that I am a child of God, I may or may not choose to follow Christ, (that’s a moment by moment choice) but if I don’t follow Christ, that doe not change the fact that I am a child of God!
    I see this term Christ follower used pretty often in Christian circles now a days. Where did this come from? LS?

  8. Chas, most Lordship “salvationists” who oppose Calvinism do so on the basis of opposing the concept that God decides who will and who will not believe.

    However, they will still insist that “true Christians will…” In other words, it is just a matter of how many tenets of Calvinism they believe. Almost all Lordship “salvationists” whom I have encountered believe in some variation of the Calvinist tenet of “perseverance of the saints.”

    I suppose it is possible for someone to believe that one must resolve to give up his sins to receive eternal life (front-end LS), while not believing that one who has made such a genuine resolution will, inevitably have his life manifest some degree of behavioral and/or attitudinal changes (back door LS).

    I sometimes colloquially lump Arminianism with Lordship “salvation,” even though it is somewhat different. But, Calvinism, LS, and Arminianism all require works to obtain, keep, or demonstrate that one has received eternal life.

  9. Johninnc…

    After searching the link you posted, I got a slightly different take on the matter of LS vs. Calvinism. Instead of saying that “lordship salvation is a form of Calvinism”, which would imply that all LS-ers are Calvinists, wouldn’t it be more accurate to say that lordship salvation and Calvinism spring from the same root? I don’t know of any Calvinists who are not also LS-ers, but I do know of several LS-ers that are staunchly anti-Calvinist.

  10. A search term from today:

    “Is Lordship salvation a form of Calvinism?”

    My comment: yes. Please see article linked below:

    https://expreacherman.com/2012/12/04/southern-baptists-fragile-detente-the-fight-over-competing-false-gospels-calvinism-and-lordship-salvation/

  11. Funny, when I was young, I went to ‘church’ with my cousins. It was the Worldwide Church of God. One thing that stood out is the pictures of the ‘fathers’ of the church up on the wall, similar to how the Mormons did it. I guess my mom had no idea where her sister was going to church, it was a different state, but I knew as a little girl, something wasn’t right. I remember my cousin arguing about having to be baptized or you wouldn’t go to heaven. I brought up the thief on the cross, she didn’t know how to answer that. The rules and regulations led both of them into some serious trouble. I believe they both know the Lord now and are out of that cult.

  12. I was briefly, mentally sucked into Armstrongism. I found out tragically that typical LS and Armstrong do not differ by much. Armstrong was, among other things, LS. And they have to make grace sound like the debt trap, when it is unconditional, with no strings attached. Sad. Grace did not come from China.

  13. Alan, you are right about Salvation begin a totally free gift purchased for us by the precious blood Jesus shed for us all. It is interesting that some of the translations leave the word God out.

    And, I agree that anyone who teaches that salvation by grace is a trap is opposed to grace.

  14. John,
    As a child I was raised in the Armstrongism cult. The only time I can recall Herbert Armstrong discussing the topic of grace was when he quoted the passage in Jude 4 where it refers to “ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness. . . ” Proponents of Lordship Salvation who refer to the grace of God as a trap may not sink to the level of Herbert Armstrong’s strange doctrine, but they are nonetheless enemies of grace.

    Moments ago I went back and read Jude 4. First, I read it in the KJV. Then I seemed to recall the verse reading differently in other translations. So, I referred to the footnotes in my NJKV, which, despite a few shortcomings, does an excellent job of exposing the errors of the Nestle-Aland Greek text. Jude 4 concludes with the phrase ” . . . and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.” However, in the translations based on the Critical Text, such as the NIV and NASB, the word God is missing! This omission changes the meaning dramatically! By perverting the Word of God, they make salvation all about “you making Jesus your lord and master”, rather than believing the Gospel that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God and the Savior of the world. Salvation is a totally free gift purchased for us by the
    precious blood Jesus shed for us all.

  15. We had a search term today that was really interesting:

    “Salvation by grace trap”

    My comment: someone has apparently told this searcher that to think that one receives eternal life the only way the Bible teaches – which is by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone – is a “trap.”

    Talk about frustrating grace…

  16. And I suspected it because of what I learned about LS and Baptists.

  17. Phil, its a shame that not only does the church that McCain regularly attended teach a false gospel message, but that the various funerals for McCain devolved into spectacles of political rancor under the guise of unity.

    Funerals are a great time to preach the gospel. That opportunity seems to have been missed, or at least overshadowed, in all of the fanfare.

  18. Jason – I searched for ‘What is lordship salvation’? Of course all the usual suspects came up. If you want to know what not to be, they were all there. John MacArthur, John Piper, R.C. Sproul, Rick Warren, even Kenneth Copeland… Lord help those who are looking for the truth to find this place.

  19. Jason, it seems like it used to show up more.

  20. “lordship salvation” itself does not turn up Expreacherman at all within 30 results. I wonder why.

  21. Chas, I agree, they sound like the rest of the works based ‘gospels’.

    I didn’t know how far back that message had been (thanks Johninnc for that), but I think they have continued to pile on more heresy as they’ve been on the broad way for a long time. Not saying individuals can’t be saved in those churches, just that they’re teaching another gospel too.

  22. Following are a a few more search terms, in statement form, rather than in question form. My comments are in bold.

    Southern Baptist Convention Lordship salvationalthough the Southern Baptist Convention is an amalgam of so-called “independent” member churches, the SBC adheres to the Baptist Faith and Message, which is rife with Lordship salvation error. Its seminaries teach Lordship salvation, as do its most prominent pastors and officeholders.

    John Piper false teachercorrect! John Piper teaches a false gospel of salvation by works.

    “Radical” by David Platt is badcorrect! The book “Radical” reflects the false gospel promoted by David Platt.

  23. chas, the Baptist Faith and Message has evolved over time, but it has added works to the gospel at least as far back as 1925 (the last version that I could find), and most likely, even before that.

  24. Holly…
    If you had simply posted that “gospel message” and not said where it came from, I’d have assumed it came from an RC church. That’s Baptist? They really are drifting back to Rome.

  25. Johninnc – thanks for the prayers for Betty and Tony. I know I am just a laborer in the harvest, praying others might water. Also know as we pray we are also laboring. Not too much hope today, but I trust in the power of the gospel and of God’s Word.

    And as for North Phoenix Baptist, yes, it’s campus is huge and has a huge workout facility. It also has ‘contemporary music’, ‘relevant preaching’ and a ‘diverse’ group of people.

  26. Phil, it really upsets me too. This is a huge church in the valley. And so this ‘gospel’ isn’t the Word of God (as you rightly know). This same church did the Ash Wednesday services for their congregation so they could be more friendly to the community. Anything but the truth. And men and women eat it up because they’re DOING something.

    I hope somehow he believed too. He did state he was not born again. I hope he didn’t believe their gospel.

  27. Holly, the Baptist Faith and Message is so riddled with error. I’m sure the church is a big one, but their plan of salvation is just false.

  28. Holly, I have prayed for Betty and Tony.

  29. Holly, it really irritates me when I hear the doctrines of men, like you mention in the North Phoenix Baptist Church, like it is supposed to be the truth of Scripture and the word of God which it isn’t. What a piece of scripture twisting. They just can’t get their arms around the fact that Christ did it all: HE died and rose to regenerate, sanctify, and glorify the undeserving sinner. They act like salvation is some magic pill that must bring about a person transforming themselves; in other words, faith plus our works. I hope that McCain believed the true gospel and not what this church you mention puts out.

  30. On a good note three people have commented and/or emailed me. One is ‘trying to follow Christ’s words’. The other, an older woman, Roman Catholic raised, doesn’t understand what kind of a God would send people to hell, and doesn’t know where she is going when she dies. We’ve been having an email conversation, please pray for Betty.

    The third, an agnostic, is going to be cremated and sprinkled around his lake and if he’s wrong, he thinks the grace of God will still descend upon him. Please pray for Tony.

    The sad part is when the one woman commented that she didn’t know what God wanted for her life, another woman who I’ve seen be pretty self-righteous came right in to tell her how sad because SHE was always about her Father’s business. I erased her comment because I have seen her do this over and over, and if she was about her Father’s business, maybe she might have had some wisdom to find out if this woman knew Him (she doesn’t).

    Anyways, the fields are ripe for the harvest. Many out there trying to burn the crops before we get there, or while we’re there.

  31. As you all know John McCain died on Saturday Afternoon. He was attending a church here locally in my town, North Phoenix Baptist. Of course you can guess their ‘gospel message’.

    IV. SALVATION

    Salvation involves the redemption of the whole man, and is offered freely to all who accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour, who by His own blood obtained eternal redemption for the believer. In its broadest sense salvation includes regeneration, sanctification, and glorification.

    A. Regeneration, or the new birth, is a work of Gods grace whereby believers become new creatures in Christ Jesus. It is a change of heart wrought by the Holy Spirit through conviction of sin, to which the sinner responds in repentance toward God and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.

    Repentance and faith are inseparable experiences of grace. Repentance is a genuine turning from sin toward God.
    Faith is the acceptance of Jesus Christ and commitment of the entire personality to Him as Lord and Saviour.

    Justification is Gods gracious and full acquittal upon principles of His righteousness of all sinners who repent (turn from sin) and believe in Christ. Justification brings the believer into a relationship of peace and favor with God.

  32. I have been on the other side, too. When I was LS, I met people who never qualified belief and never heard of “not truly saved”. They believed like my childhood church taught me. I met them on obsolete social networks. I even met a Calvinist who wasn’t a fruit inspector. I could not explain my confusion to them. I didn’t realize until later that these people were free grace. But these people also did not discern the subtlety of my error. They could not help me. I may have confused them. This was so many years ago.

  33. Jason, those kinds of people have a hard time getting their arms around John 5:24.

  34. My experience is slightly different. There is a certain type that are very accepting. They will take my “I have trusted” for an answer. But as soon as I add that I am not looking at my works as evidence, they will accuse me. I have to explain what fruit inspection is and why I reject it before they will show their true colors and turn lordship on me.

  35. Phil, I understand your point completely. My testimony is that Christ died for my sins, and was raised from the dead, and that I need not look to any life change at all to confirm that. If people focus on life change to help them believe that anyone (including themselves) has eternal life, they are looking in the wrong place.

  36. Holly, I think all of us want good testimonies. But my point was that if you told like a group, fellowship or church simply that you had trusted Christ as your Savior and that’s it, without adding things such as “I repented of my sins”, or ways I am living my life better, then would they believe your were “really saved”? In the LS faith/works world and belief system faith must result in fruit.

  37. PhilR – that’s a really good red flag for people to pay attention to.

    I always wanted one of those testimonies, but I just didn’t have an exciting enough life. And then, when things started changing for me, it seemed so slow, I felt like such a snail, such a turtle, that I was almost embarrassed. But it’s not about us anyways, and He teaches us and helps us to unlearn error and build solid foundations (in our walk) and some just seem to grow faster than others. At some point I just figured that I’d enjoy the time spent with Him and try to let Him wash my feet and trust the outcome to Him.

  38. I have many friends who read here and maybe still have not commented or very infrequently, but they read.

    Many very scarred by the teachings of lordship (loadship) which they are having a hard time healing from since so many Scriptures have been used out of context.

    I saw a documentary on cults which I had never watched before, but the same cult leader was screaming, ‘you will cry Lord Lord but He will say depart from me you worker of iniquity’. This same cult leader separated a mother from her husband and children imprisoning her in a shack in the yard, and she was hoping this would help save her. I watched a couple more and saw interestingly the same tactic, a fear that God would never accept them and of course never based on truth.

    Thank you John for continuing to stand. This ministry I know is a blessing to many, and also a thorn in the side of those who want to draw away followers after themselves.

  39. Hobbs, we are glad you found us.

  40. Hobbs, we are glad you found us.

    And, you are right. Many religious organizations use the herd mentality to frustrate grace.

  41. I think my search term coming here was a frustrated, tormented ‘so what the heck IS grace then?!’, having been subtly terrorised by so much guff for ages.

    That lead me to the ‘what the heck is grace then’ article on here; and the rest is history.

    I’ve felt so much better the last couple of years since being able to rest in the simple truth: ‘I’m saved because Christ paid for my sins’. End of story. No add-ons. Nothing else.

    That’s our foundation.

    It’s what every believer wants to rest in, but the religious organisations that herd them won’t allow it.

  42. Phil, agree completely.

  43. A red flag can be fellowshipping with a church where they not only want to hear that you believed the gospel of your salvation, but in addition they expect to hear how your life has changed and you have become a better person. A person can feel pressured into seeing if he or she has measured up to his saving faith.

  44. chas, whatever the search term, we are glad that you found us!

  45. I don’t even remember the search path that brought me to this site a couple years ago, but I’m sure thankful for it (the site). It’s becoming increasingly difficult to find any ministry that is NOT corrupted by LS to some degree. Plus, it seems like the “bigger” and more well-known any ministry is, the greater the likelihood it will harbor LS in some form. I think two possible reasons for that are:

    1) “Christian” Virtue-Signalling: Preaching LS supposedly tells everyone, “Hey! WE are not of that ‘greasy grace’ crowd, we’re HOLY! None of that sex-abuse stuff here! We don’t condone sin! No need to investigate US!”

    2) “Christian” Shakedown: LS-like any type of legalism–is a great way to get people to “proclaim” their “faith” by action. And what’s the most “visible” action at hand? Why, “sending in a love gift” ($$$) of course! “If you really believe, open your wallet! Refusing would be apostasy, or even denial! What? You don’t want to give? You must not be saved, then. People with real faithwant to send us $$$.”

    There may be more reasons, but these capture the general idea. It’s an old, old scam. The RCC has used it for centuries. “Protestant/Evangelicals” are just lately getting the hang of it. Ironically, it works because it appeals to sinful human nature; that insatiable need to self-justify.

  46. Jason, I just tried the same thing, and got results that included Expreacherman articles in three of the searches.

  47. I have thought of four questions, concerning in my opinion the top 4 worst movements I have encountered. The results might fluctuate:

    1. Does Hillsong teach lordship salvation? Yes.
    4th result: article on this site: Lordship Salvation: here are some signs.
    2. Does Bethel teach lordship salvation? If you mean Bethel Redding, yes.
    “bethel lordship salvation” 2nd result: article on this site: Lordship Salvation: here are some signs.
    3. Does NAR teach lordship salvation? Yes.
    2nd result: article on this site: Are all Christian religions teaching lordship salvation.
    4. Does Owuor teach lordship salvation? He teaches Repentance and Holiness, which is the exact same thing.
    “owuor lordship salvation” 2nd result: article on this site: Lordship Salvation: partaking in Greg Laurie’s evil deeds part 2. I find his claim to be the two witnesses creepy.

    Sometimes, I had to abbreviate the search.

  48. Nadine, it’s great to hear from you.

    Thanks for your prayers.

  49. Nadinemarie Warner

    Thank you and I will be praying for this ministry , which is a blessing and encouraging ! I love you all in Christ our Redeemer ! Romans 1:16

    In Christ, Nadine

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

  50. Katmazdobelieve, we are grateful that you are here, and I join you in praying that more end up here.

  51. Katmazdobelieve

    “…and we are fortunate that some of them end up here at Expreacherman…”
    I am one of those fortunate and I pray that more end up here.

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