Every day we are hearing of more and more people getting sick and dying from Coronavirus. Many will get sick, or have loved ones who get sick. Many more will face the uncertainty of job loss. Everyone’s lives are being disrupted.
We are all hoping for a cure, or for this disease to go away so that we can get back to normal. But, as bad as it is, coronavirus isn’t mankind’s biggest problem. Mankind’s biggest problem is spiritual separation from God.
There is a God. He is the Eternal Creator, without beginning or end. He created everything, including you and me. He is perfectly holy, perfectly just, and perfectly loving. As such, He cannot allow anything that isn’t perfect into His presence.
You and I aren’t perfect. We have all sinned (done things that are wrong in God’s eyes) and can’t do anything to fix that. Our efforts to work our way back to God are completely useless.
Where is the Good News? The Good News is this:
God loves us so much that He would rather die than spend eternity without us.
So, He gave his only begotten Son –Jesus Christ – God in the flesh – to pay for our sins. Jesus took our sin from us. He made the complete payment for our sin, leaving us nothing to pay.
He did this by suffering a criminal’s death by crucifixion. He died on the cross, He was buried, and He was raised from the dead three days later, proving that His payment for our sins was accepted.
Anyone who believes in Jesus, and what He accomplished through His death and resurrection – that he paid the full price for our sins, leaving nothing for us to pay – has eternal life. Eternal life means that we are no longer spiritually separated from God. God no longer sees believers in their sins, but sees them as perfectly righteous. Eternal life begins the moment a person believes in Jesus as Savior and lasts for all eternity. It can never be lost or forfeited, no matter what happens in our lives down the road.
John 5:24: Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.
Anyone who does not believe in Jesus as Savior remains spiritually separated from God, and does not have eternal life. This does not end at physical death, but lasts for all eternity.
John 3:18: He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
People will tell you all kinds of different ways to have eternal life, or even that there’s no such thing.
Many people will tell you that Jesus is necessary for eternal life, but that He isn’t enough – that you have to “do your part” by reforming your behavior, doing good works, and so on. But this is not true. We are saved by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone.
You should listen to what Jesus has to say, above what anyone else tells you. Since Jesus is God, and God is perfect, He cannot lie.
Here is what Jesus says on how to have eternal life:
John 11:25-26: Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?
If you want to know more about the GOOD NEWS click here: THE GOSPEL
Keith, that’s really a sad story regarding the prisoner on death row.
Jack Weaver rightly saw Piper as a danger.
John, Piper’s big thing with his “Christian Hedonism” is that one must seek to “treasure” or “savor” Christ in order to know whether he has eternal life. I recently read a transcript of a witnessing encounter which he had with a prisoner on death row at the Louisiana State Penitentiary. Instead of asking the prisoner if he had believed on Christ for eternal life, he asked him if he treasured Christ. “Christian Hedonism” is largely based on misinterpretation of Jesus’ parable of the hidden treasure in Matt. 13:44. So his false gospel is pretty easy to spot.
I have heard Piper say some things on sanctification that sound pretty accurate if one were to properly understand that those things pertain to what a believer should (not will) do for eternal reward but they have no bearing on his justification, or whether he has eternal life. To Piper, those things must be done or else one does not have eternal life, although he may not explicitly say it.
Most people in evangelical churches today cannot distinguish between justification and possession of eternal life on the one hand and progressive sanctification unto eternal reward on the other. Some in these churches may inadvertently believe the Biblical gospel and then be swayed away from it by false teaching such as Piper’s. So Jack Weaver’s statement that Piper’s teachings are a bridge to false doctrine makes sense, particularly for those who are not grounded in the faith.
Keith, the late Jack Weaver wrote an article a few years back in which he referred to Piper as a dangerous “evangelical bridger” between false teachers and biblical Christianity.
While this may have been an apt depiction of Piper at one point, I see Piper himself transparently teaching a false gospel. Like you said, he incorporates some truth, but includes a dose of rat poison.
Keith, I was just talking to my wife about John Piper when I read your comment. A lot of people are just blind to Piper’s error.
I had read the other day that a US Army Chaplain had been criticized for promoting Piper’s book(let), and while I am 100% in favor of freedom of religion in the US, I am 100% against the false gospel that Piper teaches.
What makes John Piper (and other false teachers) dangerous is that so much of what they say and write seems biblical. As the old rat poison analogy goes, it is 99% nutritious. It’s that remaining 1% that will kill you.
You have to closely examine what they say about how a person receives, possesses and knows that he has eternal life to discern the error.
Warning: John Piper has a new book(let) out entitled “Coronavirus and Christ.” If you are looking for good news from John Piper, you will not find it.
They won’t get any dispensations from Pastor Chris.
Keith, perhaps so. Legalism begets legalism.
I wonder if the purveyors of lordship salvation will likewise give their parishioners “dispensation” since they have been locked down in their homes and hence, unable or limited in their opportunities to do good works to “prove” their salvation.
Some signs of life are starting to appear in the world of churchianity, as South Carolina Roman Catholics start to re-open for mass. Interesting quote below:
In its statement the diocese acknowledged that “the risk of contracting COVID-19 will still exist,” and stated that “Bishop Guglielmone will continue granting dispensation” to those who still feel uncomfortable about attending weekend Mass – or who might be in high-risk categories for potential exposure to the virus.
Holly, thanks for sharing that beautiful, heartwarming story. I have prayed for Adam, and for you and the rest of your family as well.
I had a video call with my son Adam today. He can’t really see, but someone had to stay there with him. I read him a story I wrote about an Easter Bunny he named Gabriel. This enabled me to write about the angel Gabriel, and the announcement of Jesus birth and what Jesus did for us. It was really emotional, because the bunny was the story of Adam and those of us in the family. It’s one of the few times I’ve seen him emotional, he said he was fine, I don’t know what he was reacting too, but he seemed sad.
On that note, I appreciate all who think of him, if you would mention him in your prayers. He is a little boy in a nursing facility alone and it’s really hard on this mom. Love in Him to you all.
May God bless you as well Marcel!
Thank you Johninnc and all the other for writing here!
Jesus Christ bless us all!
Holly, agree. We should all be alert for opportunities to share the gospel with others. The gospel is unassailably true and is the only real source of lasting hope for anyone.
Phil, John, Chas, (all my family here), I know it’s getting harder for many. Too many voices of anxiety, fear and depression among believers, and so much in the way of conspiracy (some of which may or may not be truth) but I watch it consuming believers and non-believers alike, and it seems like the message of the cross is bolder in some, and quieter in others. I pray we all are steadfast and will stand with our armor on.
Thanks Chas! Same to you as well.
Happy Resurrection Day to everyone here!
Phil, it is great to be able to encourage one another and to express our love for the Lord and each other.
There are lots of discouraging voices out there, that’s for sure. It is great to know that nothing can separate us from the love of Christ!
Holly, John, and all. It’s is great that we can encourage one another here in this fellowship of grace and express our love for the Lord and one another, especially in this crisis. The Enemy hates what we are doing here in this fellowship of grace and will try to disrupt us.
Holly, it is comforting to know that we have eternal life through Christ Jesus. There are so many in this lost world who don’t.
And, there are lots of wolves out there – from those who are seeking to implement their twisted visions for the world to those who are using the peoples’ fear to lure them to their false gospel messages. It is easy to get discouraged, even for those of us who have assurance of eternal life
Keeping focused on Jesus’ victory over the grave and the eternal life we have in Him is, as always, the best place to focus. And, these perilous times may offer us lots of opportunities to share the reason for our hope.
He washed us white as snow. This was a really dark time for Jesus. We have a little glimpse in this world right now of the fear, the depression, the oppression, the hate and murderous attitudes.
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I was just contemplating the perilous times we live in, in light of the perilous times for Jesus and the disciples. We need to pray more for little things and stay close to the Light so we will be walking in it. Too easy to get on the edge as we look at those things.
We are so blessed, because we know where we will go when we die. And we may see some last minute believers, some Thieves on the cross. And the reminder that although in really hard times, while it may feel like it, He has never forsaken us. He is preparing that place for us, and it’s almost ready.
He had the victory over the grave (death and sin’s penalty) and we will rise again to be with Him forever. Take heart in this, He loves us. We are His children. Love all you guys.
Thank you John!
JohnWI, we are thankful for you and thankful that you are part of the ExPreacherman family.
Phil, Thank you for the encouraging words and reminder. It is so easy, everyday, for me to look at self, and get down in the dumps, instead of looking to Christ as my righteousness, and follow is leading.
I am so thankful for all my brothers and sisters in Christ, here on this blog, that I get encouragement and fellowship from. I am still praying that someday we will be able to find a church, in our area, that we can attend, to also have fellowship, without the contamination of the LS and Calvinism heresies mixed in.
Please note: we believe that God is actively drawing men to Him in all situations. We are hopeful that the coronavirus pandemic and related economic turmoil would cause many to contemplate their mortality and the fleeting nature of the things that this world offers.
While we know that everything that happens is either caused by God or allowed by God, we cannot presume to know which is which. Death and corruption are consequences of the fall. Accordingly, we will not entertain comments that claim to know God’s role in, or intention with respect to these current events.
These events may bring us many opportunities to share the gospel with people who desperately need to hear it.
P.S. Please do not send us any articles or videos that claim to be “the real truth” about what is going on with the coronavirus. Those things detract from the mission of this ministry which is to promote and defend the gospel.
Phil, we are blessed that it is Christ’s righteousness that has justified and saved us and, as you said, we should walk in the Spirit and look to Him to guide us.
I am so reminded and blessed that it is all of Christ’s righteousness alone that has eternally justified and saved me. Christ bought us with his blood, redeemed us to be eternally his. All we do is accept his finished saving work for our redemption. And it is His righteousness that is to lead me in my walk. If we look to keeping the law and our own righteousness and works, we are enslaved to sin and sinking sand because we can never keep the commandments. We must look to the Spirit to guide us especially in these troubled times.
Tangie, welcome and thanks for your comment.
We are thankful that we can proclaim the gospel unhindered no matter what circumstances we are in.
Amen. Amen. Amen “Mankind’s biggest problem is spiritual separation from God. There is a God.”
Doug, Hi. You know what being delivered from that stinkin’ thinking reminded me of?
David in Psalm 51 praying for God to restore unto him the joy of his salvation. The joy came back.
Doug, we are thankful that you find expreacherman to be a blessing, and that you were rescued from LS and are that you are enjoying the assurance of your salvation!
Thanks for commenting!
Amen! Thank you so much for your strong stand for the Gospel of grace. I have been following expreacherman on and off for years, but this actually is my first time posting a comment. I was rescued from the false gospel of lordship salvation back in 2010. I’m now 37 years old and am enjoying the absolute assurance of my salvation. I really appreciate the work that you do on this site. God bless you!
Jason, I agree completely!
There are too many pastors declaring and proclaiming healing. While there is nothing wrong with praying for healing, there is something seriously wrong with declaring and proclaiming. The Gospel is that believers have eternal life, healing or no healing.
Thanks for the prayers Holly!
That is the greatest thing for all of us to remember. People need the Lord. Thank you John for sharing, praying for my family in Christ.
LD, Thanks for the encouragement!
Amen! Thank you Johninnc for your diligence in posting new articles. May we all stay strong and continue to share the gospel even in the midst of the coronavirus situation (whether in-person or online). Be safe and remember to look up since the things of the world are temporary and will go away. Blessings be to you all!