Author Archives: expreacherman

Southern Baptist Convention and J.D.Greear Promote: “The Posture of Lordship Salvation”

False

Lordship Salvation: The Devil is in the Details

By: our dear friend, John

A friend of mine recently brought me a parenting magazine he had picked up from his Southern Baptist church. He pointed me to an article entitled “Should We Stop Asking Jesus into Our Hearts?” The article was a series of excerpts from the book of the same title; written by J.D. Greear, lead pastor of the Summit Church in Raleigh, NC.

In reading the article, I was reminded of a couple of old adages.

The first adage isthe devil speaks with a forked tongue.” Greear aids and abets the evil one by mixing Biblical truths with his LS-slanted opinions and quotes from other shameless promoters of LS, including Charles Haddon Spurgeon.

Consider the following excerpt:

In his parable about the different types of soil, Jesus spoke of a group who heard his word and made an initial, encouraging response of belief, only to fade away over time. These are those, Jesus explained, who hear the gospel and respond positively to it—pray the prayer, walk the aisle, get baptized, or do whatever new converts in your church do. They remain in the church for a period of time. But they do not endure when the sun of persecution comes out and will not in the end be saved.”

Jesus did not say that these people “will not in the end by saved.” Those are Greear’s words, and they reflect an LS orientation. That LS orientation is corroborated by the following quote, which reveals Greear’s belief in the Calvinist/LS false doctrine of “perseverance of the saints”:

The apostle John almost always talks about “believing” in the present tense because it is something we do continually, not something we did once in the past…The posture begins at a moment, but it persists for a lifetime.”

Which brings us to our second adage:The devil is in the details.”

Like virtually all Lordship “Salvationists”, Greear pays lip service to belief in the Gospel, but then betrays that belief by what else he says.

First, the lip service:

Salvation is not given because you prayed a prayer correctly, but because you have leaned the hopes of your soul on the finished work of Christ.”

Then, the betraying twist:

Repentance means understanding that Jesus is Lord and that you have lived in cosmic treason to him and reversing your direction based on that.”

Greear’s definition of repentance to include “reversing your direction” is code for turning from sins for salvation, making Christ Lord of your life for salvation, and so on. He repeatedly uses the term “posture” toward Christ (I counted at least six) as a way of expressing this flawed belief system. The word posture is never used in the New Testament.

As a follow-up, I read Trevin Wax’s interview with Greear, from January 31, 2013. Following is a telling quote:

Disciples of Jesus are the ones who are saved; not those who go through a ritual.”

And from Mark Driscoll’s interview with Greear from March 26, 2013:

“…I would ask them if their present posture is one of submission to Christ’s Lordship and trust in his finished work. If so, they are saved, even if they don’t remember the prayer or the moment they got into that posture.

Second, I would ask them to consider whether the signs of eternal life are present in them. As John explains so thoroughly in 1 John, conversion does not bring sinless perfection, but it does begin to make fundamental changes in the human heart.”

Greear reveals, with these comments, his errant belief that discipleship and evidence of a changed life are requirements for salvation.

My friend who brought me Greear’s article did not buy into it. But, the article is indicative of the kinds of false information that millions of people are being fed in their churches every week. In fact, Greear has received glowing recommendations from a veritable “who’s who” of Lordship “salvationists”, and is a prominent leader in the Southern Baptist Convention.

We must pray for those who preach the gospel faithfully, and be vigilant in exposing false doctrine and false teachers.

God’s Guarantee of ETERNAL Life << Clivk

How To Be Sure You Are Going to Heaven

From our dear friend, Dr. Tom Cucuzza is this wonderful message:

A Clear and Simple Explanation of

The Gospel of Jesus Christ

By Dr. Thomas M. Cucuzza

All Bible quotations have been taken from

The Authorized King James Version

How To Be Sure You Are Going to Heaven

For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).

Friend, has anyone ever taken the time to explain to you from the Bible how you can know for sure you are going to Heaven when you die? This is the most important issue you will ever face in your life. It is God’s desire for you to be sure of Heaven. But there are certain facts you must understand and believe. This booklet will explain to you those facts and then challenge you to believe them. We will divide our study into two parts:

 1. Understanding Our Condition and Need

According to the Bible, each and every person will spend forever in Heaven or forever in Hell. This is a sobering thought. As someone once said, “Forever is a long time.” This is perhaps the greatest understatement in the history of mankind.

Unfortunately, there is a great deal of confusion about the way to Heaven. The key is that we understand and then believe what God says about it. Let’s look at this question together, one point at a time.

We Are All Sinners

The first point you need to understand is that the Bible says that we have all sinned and are less perfect than God.

For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).

To sin means literally to miss the mark. We all miss the mark of God’s perfection. It is like shooting an arrow and missing the bull’s eye. We can try to do our best to live right and do good things, but we will fail to be perfect.

When we think of sin most of us tend to think of those acts we qualify as “major” transgressions such as murder, kidnapping, rape, etc. We categorize or measure them, according to our view of their severity. But sin, as defined in the Bible, is often something as simple as envy, pride, anger, lust, or unwholesome thoughts. Certainly you would agree that we are all guilty of at least one of these, and so we have all violated and broken God’s commandments.

Many people think that because we are sinners, God hates us. The truth is, God loves us but He hates our sin. It is our sin that separates us from God. This leads us to our second point:

The Wages Of Sin Is Death

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

What does this mean? This means that because we have broken God’s laws, we must pay the penalty for our sin. Think of it this way: If you were to break the speed limit and get a ticket, you would be required to pay the fine. Even if you appeared in court and told the judge that you were sorry and would never do it again, you would still be required to pay the penalty for breaking the law. This is “justice” and most of us accept it because we desire to be treated justly.

If a criminal harmed someone in your family, you would certainly want them caught and brought to justice. However, if they “got off” you would think that the judge had been unfair, and you would be right. God’s Word tells us that the wages, or penalty, that must be paid for your sin is death, which would be spiritual separation from God forever in Hell. This is a terrible thought, but it is true.

Your “good works,” or good intentions, will not pay for your sin. According to the Bible, death is the only payment.

 Heaven Will Be A Perfect Place

Man must be perfectly righteous to go to Heaven. The fact that each of us is already a sinner disqualifies us from entering Heaven. The Bible says:

And there shall in no wise [way] enter into it [Heaven] any thing that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie: but they which are written in the Lamb’s book of life” (Revelation 21:27).

If there was even one sin in Heaven there would also be death. Heaven would then have the same problems we experience on earth. Consequently, a person cannot get into Heaven with even one sin. Notice not even one lie can enter Heaven. You must be perfectly righteous in God’s eyes to enter Heaven.

So far our situation sounds pretty grim. We are all sinners. God requires that our sins be paid for by death-eternal separation from God. Heaven is a perfect place, and we are not perfect. We are sinners. But it gets worse! Please examine the next point very carefully. The majority of people in the world are confused about the next issue.

 No Amount Of Good Works Could Ever Be Enough To Get Us Into Heaven

Many people think that trying to be good, being religious, stopping bad habits, or starting good ones will qualify them to enter Heaven.

Here is a list of some of the good things people think will help them get to Heaven, yet according to the Bible, none of these things can make us perfect in God’s sight:

  • Trying to keep the commandments.
  • Repenting of all your sin.
  • Going to church.
  • Sincerely trying to turn from sin.
  • Getting water baptized.
  • Being sorry for your sin.
  • Keeping ordinances or sacraments
  • Committing yourself to God to try to live a better life.
  • Making Jesus the Lord of your life.
  • Trying to get rid of bad habits.
  • Giving money.
  • Promising to be a better husband or wife.
  • Asking Jesus into your heart.
  • Giving your life to Christ.

This list is not all inclusive, but it is indicative of what many people believe. But it is not what the Bible says. The Bible says,

For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast” (Ephesians 2:8-9).

Think about it for a moment. If we have to be perfect to get into heaven, and we have already sinned, no amount of “good works” will ever make us perfect. Clearly our good works cannot save us in any way, shape, or form. We have already failed and are disqualified. Each and every one of us stands condemned before God because of our sin.

Notice also that the Bible says that being “saved” is not something one can achieve or earn. It is the gift of God and is not the result of good works.

So, here is the situation we are in. We have all sinned and our sin must be paid for. If we are going to “take care of it ourselves”, we will spend forever separated from God in Hell. God does not want that for us and there is nothing we can do of ourselves to get rid of our sin. If we die in that condition we will be lost forever. So what are we going to do? This leads us to the eternal solution:

2. God’s Perfect Provision in Meeting Our Need

 Because God loves us and does not want us to spend forever separated from Him, He provided the solution.

Jesus Christ Died In Our Place, Making The Complete Payment For Our Sins

This is the beauty of the Gospel. The Lord Jesus Christ, God in the flesh, had no sin of His own. When Jesus came into this world He came to die for us. I am sure you have heard that before. Jesus died for our sins, but do you understand that He died for your sins and died in your place? The Bible puts it this way:

But God commendeth [displayed] His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8).

When Jesus died on the cross, all the sin that we have done or ever will do He took upon Himself, making the complete payment for us, leaving us nothing to pay for. The Bible says:

For He [God] hath made Him [Christ] to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him” (2 Corinthians 5:21).

Jesus has paid the price in full for your sins. When Jesus died on the cross He said, “It is finished.” The word “finished” means “paid in full”. He was buried and came back from the dead three days later to prove it was done. God is satisfied with the payment Jesus made for your sins, and there is no “work” left for you to do. This leads us to our next point:

All We Can Do To Receive Everlasting Life Is To Believe In Jesus Christ As Our Savior

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).

Please understand my friend. All of the work required for you to possess everlasting life has been done through the payment Jesus made on the cross. As a result, He offers you eternal life as a gift. The moment you put your trust in Jesus Christ as your Savior, God gives you eternal life as a free gift. The Bible puts it this way:

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

Notice that it is a gift. A verse I quoted earlier says the same thing:

For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast” (Ephesians 2:8-9).

What is there for you to do? Simply believe. Simply put your faith, or trust, in Jesus Christ, that He made that payment for your sin. The moment you put your trust in Him, He will give you everlasting life. Jesus Himself put it this way:

Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on Me hath [possesses now] everlasting life” (John 6:47).

Let me ask you a question. If God gives you everlasting life, how long will it last? The obvious answer is it will last forever. That is exactly what the word “everlasting” means. If it ever stopped, it would not be everlasting.

That is precisely what Jesus does the moment you trust in Him. He saves you and gives you the gift of everlasting life. You are forgiven of all your sins and declared “righteous” by God Himself. You become God’s very own child.

Be it known unto you therefore, men and brethren, that through this Man is preached unto you the forgiveness of sins:  And by him all that believe are justified from all things, from which ye could not be justified by the law of Moses” (Acts 13:38-39). 

You Can Know For Sure That You Are Going To Heaven, Because “Everlasting Life” Is Everlasting

God promises that once you trust in Jesus Christ as your Savior, He will never lose you nor cast you out. God cannot lie. Look at these promises God has given to us. Jesus said:

All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise [way] cast out.  For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me.  And this is the Father’s will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day” (John 6:37-39).  

Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth My word, and believeth on Him that sent Me, hath [possesses now] everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is [has] passed from death unto life” (John 5:24).  

What happens when we sin after we have trusted Jesus Christ as our Savior? Some would say that you could end up losing your salvation. However, that makes no sense in light of what Jesus accomplished in paying for all of our sins. It would also contradict God’s promise of everlasting life, no condemnation, etc. Remember Jesus paid for all of our sins.

Furthermore, when we trusted Jesus Christ as Savior, we became children of God, and He is the perfect parent. If we, as His children, choose to rebel, the Bible says that He will chasten, or discipline, us. But He will never cast us out or disown us. An Eternal God does not give birth to temporary children. (For a further discussion on eternal security see my PDF booklet, The Permanence of Salvation << Click).

God says you can be sure of going to Heaven when you die. The Bible says:

These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God” (I John 5:13).

What does it mean to believe on His name? The name “Jesus” means God who is our Savior. When you put your faith in Jesus Christ, you are trusting in Him to save you. When you do, at that very moment, He gives you the free gift of everlasting life.

This is the most wonderful truth that you can ever know. It is truly “good news”, which is what the word “gospel” means! I hope that makes sense to you. It is the greatest news in all of world.

Dear friend, would you right now, in the quietness of your mind, put your trust in Jesus Christ? He loves you and wants to be your Savior. Believe in Him and He will give you that gift of eternal life. The decision is between you and Him. There is no formal prayer that you must say. It is simply understanding that you are a sinner, that you cannot save yourself, and instead you put your trust in what Jesus has done for you as your way to Heaven. When you do, the Bible says that He then gives you the gift of eternal life, that very moment. From that moment on you are secure forever. Remember Jesus said:

Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on Me hath everlasting life” (John 6:47).

 I hope this makes sense to you. If you have any questions at all, please contact me. I would be happy to answer any questions you might have concerning salvation or the Christian life.

Dr. Thomas M. Cucuzza

3686 County Road 8 SE

St. Cloud, MN 56304

Copyright © 2013 by Thomas M. Cucuzza

All rights reserved. St. Cloud, MN 56301

This article will soon be available in PDF form which will be posted here at ExPreacherMan.

Email: tmcucuzza@northlandchurch.com

Lordship Salvation: Counterfeit Currency Exchange

counterfeit

By our friend, John

 Matthew 21:12-13:  And Jesus went into the temple of God, and cast out all them that sold and bought in the temple, and overthrew the tables of the moneychangers, and the seats of them that sold doves, And said unto them, It is written, My house shall be called the house of prayer; but ye have made it a den of thieves.

Jesus was dismayed that His house had been turned into a place of business, including the exchange of currencies.  He overturned the moneychangers’ tables and referred to them as thieves.

Those of us who have traveled to different countries are familiar with having to convert our money into local currency in order to buy things in that country.  We hear about the interactions of different currencies in the world of finance, and the impact of those interactions on global trade and the economy.

In God’s economy, there is only one currency that will pay for our sins:  the blood of Jesus.

Romans 3:24-26:  Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.

But the moneychangers continue to ply their trade, trying to convince people that other currencies will take away sin and save us.  In God’s economy, currencies other than the blood of Christ are useless counterfeit.

In his sermon of June 9, 2013, entitled “The Enemy is Stalking Us”, Tom Cucuzza put it this way:

And so what does Satan do?

He deals with counterfeit messages.  He deals in messages that sound good or even close to the real thing.  But folks, if they’re not the real thing it’s false.  It’s counterfeit.  It’s from the devil.

And the closer he can get to the real plan of salvation and yet not be the plan of salvation more people will be deceived into that.

So, what are some of the more common counterfeits being offered by the Lordship “salvationists” today?

Repent of your sins to be saved.  Follow Christ to be saved.  Forsake your sins to be saved.  Count the cost.  Put Christ on the throne of your life to be saved.  Surrender your life to Christ for salvation.  Give your life to Christ for salvation.  Allow God to change your life to be saved, and on and on.

So, are the false teachers promoting these various and sundry counterfeit currencies today like the moneychangers that Christ drove out of the temple?

John 10:1:  Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber.

Notice that Jesus uses the term “thief” to refer to anyone who tries to enter into salvation in any other way than through Him – the same term that He used to refer to the moneychangers.

As Christians, we are the temple of Christ.  We must not let these thieves have any place in our temple.

Again, from Tom Cucuzza:

People say:  “well I listen to this guy, I listen to that preacher, and boy what they were saying, it was fabulous.  Pastor, why are you down on them?”

I’m down on them because they are preaching a false gospel that will not save.

Praise God for the truth they do say.  But, I’m not going to praise God for the error that they promote.  And you shouldn’t either.  You shouldn’t either.

You be careful folks of what you take in.  What you listen to.  What you read.  You better be careful!

Here is the True Gospel of Salvation!! << Click

An Admitted Lordship “Salvationist” Visits ExPreacherMan and Asks Questions

By Jack Weaver

A gentleman named Ryan addressed us here at ExPreacherMan by direct email, asking some interesting questions about our Biblical beliefs. With his permission we  print his letter anonymously as an article post. We have numbered his questions to make answering by number more orderly and have made our comments in between his questions.

We urge our discerning readers to kindly answer Ryan’s questions from a Biblical point of view. We have emboldened some phrases for emphasis.

Ryan, we appreciate your note. After reading your questions it seems, as you say, you are indeed a Lordship Salvationist (LS) and like most LSers, also a devotee of Reformed/Calvinist teachings. (Ref. question 6).

Ryan’s Note:

Ryan: Hello, I have spent some time reading various topics on here. I would probably be considered an LSer.
 

1.) Ryan: I think we agree that Christ’s righteousness is given to us once we believe in Christ as our savior.

ExP: We here at ExP know that any believer in Jesus Christ has His Righteousness imputed the very moment he makes the personal decision to trust by Grace alone through Faith in Jesus Christ alone as Savior. He is secure forever, and it is “not by works of righteousness which we have done” before, during or after believing in Jesus. Period. (Titus 3:5)

2.) Ryan: Where I am trying to find an answer on your beliefs, and where we may disagree, is on how we can have a hint of who is a follower of Jesus or not.

ExP: It is not possible to identify a believer by his behavior. We would be more likely to accept that a person is a believer in Jesus by his clear words expressing that his salvation is dependent completely by Grace through their faith decision in Jesus Christ as Savior. There are many who call themselves “followers of Christ.” Such as Roman Catholic, Baptist, Charismatic, Calvinist, Methodist, Church of Christ and “Christian” religions of every description, yet those mentioned here, by their doctrinal statements, are not depending on Christ’s finished work on the cross for their salvation. These religions add good works to the salvation message. Example: Catholics are some of the nicest, cleanest living, most charitable, good works folks I know yet they do not trust Jesus Christ alone as their Savior. They trust their church, the Pope, their charity, Mary and the priests as their means of salvation.

3.) Ryan: I don’t want to be the Judge, but doesn’t the new creature show himself as sanctification takes place?

ExP: The new creation or creature should show — but may not. Visible evidence is not a requirement for salvation. Every Believer has two natures, the new man and the old man, the righteous nature and the sin nature — and as Paul (whom we KNOW was a believer), said: If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good.  Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.  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.  Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.  I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me. (Romans 7:16-21).
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4.) Ryan: Shouldn’t we speak warning (not condemnation) to those who don’t show change in their lives?
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ExP: We assume you are speaking of one who has trusted Jesus as his Savior. If so, we should teach him God’s Grace. Let him understand that 2 Corinthians 5:14 advises us that it is the Love of Christ that constrains [compels] us to live the Christian life and to walk in good works, not primarily by threats and warnings. Part of that teaching can be warnings if needed. Such teaching should never be a threat of loss of salvation (such as Chan, MacArthur, et al) but an understanding of God’s grace filled discipline to a believer.
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5.) Ryan: Isn’t Jesus Lord over all…even the devils?
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ExP: Yes, as we see in Scripture, “The word which God sent unto the children of Israel, preaching peace by Jesus Christ: (he is Lord of all:)” Acts 10:36.  Jesus IS Lord of all, but without Christ one cannot submit to His Lordship, they are alienated and lost. Certainly one must believe that Jesus is the Lord God Almighty in the Flesh in order to trust Him as Savior, and in doing so they remain under His Lordship — whether they are obedient to Him or not. A lack of obedience and of “following” Jesus’ Lordship does not negate one’s salvation. Fellowship, “Yes” but salvation, NO!
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6). Ryan: I agree it’s God’s gift to us to cause us to believe and repent by the power of the HS. Isn’t this considered salvation…when we trust in Him as our salvation? 
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ExP: You said it is God’s gift to us to “cause us to believe and repent.” We vehemently disagree with that statement which is the  Reformed/Calvinist notion, from the “I” in the T.U.L.I.P, “Irresistible grace.” That is NOT a Biblical teaching. God’s Grace has appeared to all men and every man/woman has a will and a choice to either believe or reject Jesus Christ. (Titus 2:11) God’s Holy Spirit convicts every person (the world) of sin, righteousness and judgment John 16:8, and Jesus Christ draws every man unto Himself.  “And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me.” John 12:32. Some will believe, some will refuse — but all have a free will choice.
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 7). Ryan: Lastly, wouldn’t our lives change as we re-direct who or what we are trusting in?
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ExP: A believer’s life SHOULD (not must) (Ephesians 2:10) show a change and he SHOULD walk in good works as he learns and is obedient to God’s Word. But that is dependent upon his free will and choice. We make a decision to believe in Jesus to have eternal life and then afterward we SHOULD make a decision/choose to serve Him. I understand your concern for those who might use as an excuse, “I believe in Jesus — now leave me alone.” Please understand this wisdom from a friend just yesterday, “Separate your concerns for a lack of behavior, works or service from the message of the FREE grace Gospel of Christ. The two doctrines are completely apart. (Romans 11:6) We decide to be saved by God’s Grace through Faith in Jesus Christ alone, then we decide to serve or work for Him — (or not).

Ryan asks: Please, just a little light on this would be appreciated…or a link that would help answer this for me. I don’t want to be divisive and am only asking for your input seeing that you are someone who is trying to be faithful to the gospel.

Ryan, Click on these Links:

Dr Tom Cucuzza, Secure Forever (E-book or hard back)

Eternal Life For You

Biblical Hope

Gospel Video; Cucuzza

Clear Gospel Campaign

Freed From the Bondage of Lordship Salvation and Religions

OUR REGRETS, by Jack Weaver:

We regret to say that the lady who was so excited about being freed from the bondage of Lordship Salvation and gave us permission to print her testimony here at ExPreacherMan has requested that her article be removed.

It is a tragic shame but she has succumbed to false teachers and no longer believes what she originally wrote about her salvation. She cannot get clear in her mind the true Biblical meaning of the word “repent,” A CHANGE OF MIND, in spite of all the scripture many of us have shared with her in personal communications.

We request that you pray diligently for her in her search, that she will heed the Truth of God’s Word and salvation by Grace and not by works of any individual righteousness.

Titus 3:5
Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;”

Jesus alone is The Savior and He alone has done all the saving for us by His Death, Burial and Resurrection, apart from our good works. He tells us that we appropriate that salvation by simply believe in Him — that He is the ALL SUFFICIENT SAVIOR. (John 3:16-18)

God’s Guarantee of Eternal Life!! << Click

Lordship “Salvation” – Playing Hide and Seek with the Gospel

hide and seek

By our friend, contributor and commenter, John

 2 Corinthians 4:3-4:  But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost:  In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.

How does Satan use Lordship “salvation” to keep people from believing the Gospel?

Following are some of my random thoughts on this question.  Please feel free to add yours.

False Fronts

 Luke 8:12:  “Those by the way side are they that hear; then cometh the devil, and taketh away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved.”

Much of mainstream Christendom teaches some form of false gospel of faith plus works.  Churches that fall into this category are not really churches at all – they are false fronts.  Satan loves to steer lost people into these buildings of bewilderment.

Consider the following from the Statement of Faith of a large Southern Baptist Convention affiliate in South Carolina:

“Our only hope is God’s free gift of salvation provided through Jesus’ death on the cross. When we repent of our sin, place our faith in Jesus, and surrender to Jesus as Lord we are saved.”

Of course our only hope is God’s free gift of salvation by Grace through Faith in Christ (Ephesians 2:8).  Unfortunately, by adding “when we repent of our sins” and “surrender to Jesus as Lord” as conditions of receiving eternal life, this church is not preaching the Gospel.

Note that the SBC mantra is “Reaching the World for Christ”.  This is not a likely outcome.

Playing for the Wrong Team

Closely associated with false fronts are believers who align themselves with them.

According to a March 27, 2013 blog in “The Christian Post”, the combined membership of the top 15 denominations in the United States is 62 million.  At the top of the list, with 16.2 million members, is the Southern Baptist Convention, followed by the United Methodist Church at 7.8 million.  Following is a quote:

 “…I have noted on a number of occasions how church membership, unfortunately, is fast becoming a meaningless number. Only the Assemblies of God on this list reported membership growth from the previous year, and their growth rate was only one-half 0f one percent.”

The real shame is that the membership numbers for many of these denominations are not shrinking faster.

Camouflage

 The Gospel (1 Corinthians 15:1-4) is a specific message that is unique in that it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believes.  Countless false gospels have been created by adding to the content of saving faith.

In his article “Attaching Personal Righteousness to the Backside of the Gospel Message”, J.O. Hosler writes:

“…one’s positions on the millennium, the rapture, or the length of days in creation do not fall within the parameters of what is essential to personal salvation. If we take a biblical concept that is important and profitably true and make it a contingency of the gospel when it is not, we have changed the gospel (Gal. 1:6-9).”

Fomenting Dissension among Believers

My final thought is that Satan’s work does not stop once a person believes.  He loves to cause dissension between us by appealing to our fleshly natures.  He hopes to divide and conquer by appealing to our emotions.  This includes misplaced loyalty to pastors or theologians, hurt over perceived slights from other believers, and disagreements over non-central theological issues.

The Grace Gospel of TRUTH << Click

Sympathy for Rick and Kay Warren at Their Son’s Suicide

By Jack Weaver

Rick and Kay Warren’s son, Matthew, committed suicide a week or so ago.

Many of us here have children and, no matter their age or circumstances, we can think of nothing worse than discovering that our child has committed suicide. We have sympathy for the Warrens as they go through their grief and loss. We also know that a parent cannot command the actions of a twenty something son or daughter.

There have been no statements released indicating that their son, Matthew, ever made that critical decision to trust Jesus Christ alone as his Savior, by Grace alone through Faith alone. We see many well meaning Christians speaking of Matthew, that they hope he will RIP (rest in peace). If he ever trusted Jesus Christ alone as his Savior, he will, right now, be resting at peace with his Savior, Jesus. However if he never made that decision to trust Jesus alone as his Savior, he is, like every unbeliever, not resting in peace but experiencing the horrors of Hell. That is Biblical fact! (John 3:18)

However, at this time while our feelings for the Warren family are sincere, we should not allow our sympathy to betray or cloud our Biblical discernment. Absolutely nothing can erase the horrible damage that Rick Warren’s “theology” has done to Biblical Christianity.

We pray that sympathy for the Warren family will not translate into Christians, out of compassion and tenderness, seeking to further investigate, follow and believe his false teachings.

One of Warren’s friends, Beth Moore (a false teacher in her own right), on Warren’s own web site, Pastors.com, used the occasion of Matthews suicide to write a scathing article, critical of any “believers” who would write anything against Warren’s false teaching at this particular time. She called out such Christians as being, relentless, mud slingers, mean, careless, bullies, enemies, hateful, mockers, slanderers, self serving, and snide.

Well, for years we have tried to document some of Rick Warren’s more egregious examples of promoting false doctrine, as well as his efforts to promote ecumenism.  Below are a few examples:

Here is Rick Warren speaking at his World Economic Forum Conference at Georgetown University. He brought in 3 Catholic priests, 3 Imams, 3 “Evangelical” ministers, 3 Rabbis — and asked what can we do about AIDS. He speaks of the Islamic Imams as his “Islamic brothers.”
This video is from the “World Economic Forum” in 2009 with — United Nations gurus Tony Blair (former UK Prime Minister) and Ban Ki Moon. This seems to be an ecumenical run up to the last World Ruling Power and the one world church.
Warren’s Ecumenical Anti-Biblical Video << Click

Quotes from Rick Warren at ExPreacherMan:

His Anti-Biblical remarks about fundamental Christianity:

“Today there really aren’t that many Fundamentalists left; I don’t know if you know that or not, but they are such a minority; there aren’t that many Fundamentalists left in America … Now the word ‘fundamentalist’ actually comes from a document in the 1920s called the Five Fundamentals of the Faith. And it is a very legalistic, narrow view of Christianity.” Quote by Rick Warren, May 2005

He calls Biblical fundamentalism an enemy – compares with Muslim fanatics:

[Fundamentalism is] “one of the big enemies of the 21st century.” “Muslim fundamentalism, Christian fundamentalism, Jewish fundamentalism, secular fundamentalism – they’re all motivated by fear. Fear of each other.” Rick Warren, January 2006

As believers in God’s free Grace we should sympathize with  the Warren’s in their grief, just as we would with any other human beings. But please, do not fall for the ecumenical gobbledygook being spread by the religious left that we must “feel” for the Warren’s and consequently embrace Rick’s foul teaching.

Eternal Life for You FREE << Click

To Free Grace Believers, Sunday is Not “Easter”

By Jack Weaver

This coming Sunday, March 31, 2013, is not “Easter.” We who place our faith in Jesus Christ alone for our eternal salvation do not worship Ostara, one of the Nordic or Germanic pagan goddesses of fertility for whom “Easter” was named. It is not a day to celebrate with eggs and bunnies.

I must admit, before I trusted Christ as my Savior and even some time after, we celebrated the world wide pagan tradition of Easter — with bunnies, eggs and such gifts for the children. But now — it is clear:

Our celebration is the remembrance of the RESURRECTION of our Savior, Jesus Christ who showed Himself alive after He gave Himself to be crucified for the sins of the world (to pay the death penalty we owe). The crucifixion was three days and three nights earlier, just as Jesus predicted. (Matthew 12:40)

John 3:16-18

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten [born] Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.  For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name [JESUS] of the only begotten [born] Son of God.”

As a child of about six or seven I memorized the 1st verse in that series but never understood or believed it until age 35 when it was fully explained. Until I trusted Christ as my Savior, I had no idea that what we called “Easter” was actually a celebration of Jesus’ Resurrection from the dead.

It is important that we put those verses in context with these:

1 Corinthians 15:1-5

“Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; By which also ye are saved, if [forasmuch as] ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ [The Messiah, Savior] died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures: And that he was seen of Cephas, then of the twelve:” [and factually witnessed by many]

The Resurrection (not “Easter) is a fact and is vital to the Gospel of our salvation:

1 Corinthians 15:17
“And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins.”

The Gospel of our salvation is only by believing it is God’s Gift of eternal life by Grace alone through Faith alone in Jesus Christ alone. His Salvation is eternal – it is NOT probation!!

Let us be thankful and remember — this Sunday is not Easter! It is the remembrance of the Resurrection of our Dear Savior.

If you are not absolutely sure of Heaven, please read the next verse from the Bible, click below, read, and believe the link below and trust in Jesus Christ as your only Savior.

Titus 3:5
“Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; “

Have the peace and Joy of KNOWING:  Eternal Life is FREE << Click

Calvinist and Lordship Salvationist Objections to the Doctrine of Rewards

 Contributed by our dear friend, John

In my day-to-day discussions with professing believers, I have found several that have never even heard of the doctrine of rewards (the Judgment Seat of Christ).  When I have tried to explain the concept to them, responses have ranged from mild skepticism (“why haven’t I ever heard of this”) to outright rejection (“that doesn’t sound right”).

The doctrine of rewards is clearly taught throughout scripture, including in 1 Corinthians 3:8-15:

Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour.  For we are labourers together with God: ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building.  According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon.  For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.  Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble; Every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is.  If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.

Following are the top ten reasons I can think of as to why someone might object to the doctrine of rewards:

  1. Ignorance – most churches don’t teach it.
  2. Disbelief in the doctrine of Grace – the doctrine of rewards is in direct conflict with Lordship “salvation.”
  3. Disbelief in eternal security – works must be done to stay saved.
  4. Disbelief in the doctrine of assurance – works are viewed as either the primary or supplemental basis of assurance.
  5. Belief in the Calvinistic tenets of “irresistible grace” and “perseverance of the saints.”
  6. Belief that good works are automatic in the life of the believer.
  7. Misunderstanding of the two natures of the believer.
  8. Confusing the judgment seat of Christ with the Great White Throne judgment or the Sheep and Goats judgment.
  9. Belief in a social gospel – the thought of differential rewards for believers may offend the sensibilities of someone with a socialist perspective.
  10. Confusion between scriptural passages dealing with the gift of eternal life vs. rewards for faithfulness – belief that heaven is the reward (see number 2).

From Clear Gospel Campaign:

“We believe that history unmistakably demonstrates that the lack of a clear understanding of the doctrine of the Judgment Seat of Christ leaves a theological vacuum on the question of human works and divine judgment, and that this vacuum is invariably filled by a corruption of the gospel of grace with some form of salvation by Christ-plus-works.  Accordingly, we believe that the teaching and preaching of the judgment seat of Christ, although not in any way part of the gospel message, is nevertheless essential to the preservation of the purity of the gospel message.”

Eternal Life Free For You <click

Calvinists /Lordship Salvationists Set Up a Straw-Man Argument Against Free Grace Teachers — It Is Called “Decisional Regeneration.”

strawman 2

By Jack Weaver and our friend/contributor, John

We recently received a comment (which we did not publish) from a gentlemen who stated:

I am so glad you and your generation are retired! Yours is the generation that brought us the damnable practice of decisional regeneration. I thank God for these men [Washer and Platt] and their stance for the truth.

This was the first I had heard of the accusation, the pejorative called “decisional regeneration.” As I searched the Internet for the phrase, the accusation abounds… almost exclusively from Calvinists and Lordship Salvation advocates (usually one and the same) aimed at those who preach God’s Free Grace.

The false idea and straw-man of “decisional regeneration” is built upon the error perpetrated by many Baptists (and other) religionists who preach that one can be saved or regenerated by “coming forward to the altar,” saying a “sinners prayer” or praying a “prayer of commitment.” They then presume the person is “saved” and “regenerated.”

It must be clearly understood that regeneration does not occur because of an altar call, the sinner’s prayer or a “commitment.”

The Biblical truth is that one must willingly believe or have faith that the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ is all sufficient and has completely paid his sin debt (which is eternal death – separation from God).

It is not an individual’s “decision” that regenerates but it is God’s Holy Spirit Who regenerates the individual the instant he freely and by his own will places his faith in Jesus Christ to save him.

However, most Calvinists, and many Lordship “salvationists,” reject outright man’s free will in responding to the Gospel by either believing in Christ as Savior or rejecting Him.

The Calvinists say no one can make a decision to trust Jesus Christ as Savior because of their belief in the first two false and ridiculous points of their Calvinist TULIP doctrine:

(1) “T” Total Depravity (or better stated, Total inability) that man is so “depraved” that he has no ability to make a decision to trust Christ as Savior under any circumstances.

This false belief is soundly refuted by J.O. Hosler in his book entitled “The Baptismal Regeneration/Believer’s Baptism Debate”:

Lost man’s capacity to see the truth, comprehend it, and desire deliverance from condemnation, is not a saving virtue. But Jesus was presenting Himself to this capacity in man when He preached, performed miracles, rose from the dead, and instituted miraculous gifts in the apostles. Fulfilled prophecy is an appeal to this capacity. Satan is fully aware of this capacity and knows that he must work to prevent lost souls from seeing the light—In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them (II Corinthians 4:4; cf. John 1:7; 12:36).”

(2) “U” Unconditional Election — that God has determined from the foundation of the world whom He would “elect” to be saved.

The Bible clearly states that God’s salvation is available to anyone and all (John 3:16) who believes in Jesus and that God has not elected anyone to salvation and likewise none to hell.

Clear Gospel Campaign explains it as follows:

We reject the doctrine of “sovereign grace,” that God infuses in certain elect persons some divine empowering substance that will “irresistibly” impel them to faith in Christ, and that apart from this infusion, men are incapable of faith.  Faith is an act of the creature, not an imposition of the Creator.  And the drawing of men to faith Christ is an act of the personal Triune God, not a product of an impersonal Aristotelian substance…

The fact that not all men respond to Christ is evidence that they are endowed with a free will to resist the drawing of the Father, and to reject the convicting ministry of the Holy Spirit, thereby calling the Holy Spirit a liar.

The Bible is very clear on the terms of salvation.

Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou SHALT be saved.” Acts 16:31

That is not something that we or our generation brought.  It is Biblical salvation.

Eternal Life For You <click

Pure, Simple Grace Gospel Illustrated!!

Dr. Tom Cucuzza

The simple, clear Gospel of God’s Grace — The Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Tom’s Church: http://www.northlandchurch.com/

You will never hear/see it any clearer.

3 Reasons Why the Gospel of Grace is the True Gospel

By Tom Cucuzza

The Simplicity of the Gospel

Words matter. God has seen fit to communicate with us through the words of the Bible. Therefore, it is important to understand and simply believe what He says.

As the debate continues to rage as to what exactly it takes to be saved, I wanted us to think about what distinguishes the true gospel from a false one. What do I mean? There are three aspects to this issue I want to mention.

1. The terms involved. Let’s define some biblical words. The Bible states many times that salvation, in the context of this article I mean eternal deliverance from eternal death to eternal life, comes through believing the gospel. Paul said in Romans 1:

Romans 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it (the gospel) is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.

a. What is the gospel? It is the truth that Jesus Christ, God in the flesh, died for our sins and came back from the dead. It is well defined in 1 Corinthians 15:

1 Corinthians 15:1 Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand;

1 Corinthians 15:3 For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;
4 And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:

Luke records this:

Luke 2:10 And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.

In v.10, “good tidings” means “good news” and it is the same root word as “gospel” in Romans 1:16 and 1 Corinthians 15:1. Also in 1 Cor. 9:16 where it says:

1 Corinthians 9:16 For though I preach the gospel, I have nothing to glory of: for necessity is laid upon me; yea, woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel!

b. What is believing? It is the Greek word “pisteuo” meaning to have faith in, or to trust in. Simply put, when a person understands their need for a Savior, and trusts in Jesus Christ, believing that He paid for their sins on the cross and came back from the dead, that person is saved.

2. The reality of what the believer already possesses. If I already have everlasting life, then it makes no sense that I have to do something more to get what I already have.

Many times in Scripture it tells us that if we will trust or believe in Christ, He saves us that moment. If we are saved that moment, then there is nothing else for us to do to be saved. In other words, you don’t have to do something more to possess eternal life if you already possess eternal life. The transaction has taken place. You have been saved. Millions can testify that when they quit trying to earn salvation, but simply put their faith in Christ, they were born again. If this is enough, and it is, then that is all a person needs to do to be saved. Many scriptures bear this out.

Let me give some examples:

John 6:47 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life.

The word “hath” means you have it now. If I have it now, and I received it by putting my faith in  Christ, then there is nothing else to do. I am already born again, a child of God, adopted into the family of God, I possess eternal life, I have an inheritance reserved for me, etc, etc.

Put another way, if trusting in Christ “did the job” then the job is done! Look at these verses:

John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

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.

Notice that if you believe you are not condemned. John 5:24 says that passing from death to life is a one way door, and it is only by believing:

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.

Again, the one who believes “hath” or has, or possesses now, everlasting life. Also, “is passed” means “has passed”. It is a done deal. This is again repeated in John 3:36.

John 3:36 He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.

We see the same truth in Acts 16:31. Paul and Silas could have told the jailer anything when he asked them, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?”. They said only one thing: Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved”. They did not say, believe and commit, believe and behave, believe and turn from your sins, believe and follow Christ. All of these things are good to do, but they have nothing to do with saving you.

My point again is simply this: If I can be saved by simply putting my trust in Jesus Christ as my Savior, then why would I have to do anything else to be saved? I am already saved! If this brings salvation, then this is the gospel, the good news. To add commitment, surrender, becoming a follower of Jesus, etc. must be false, because I have already been saved through faith in Christ.

3. The fact that there is only one message that brings salvation. In Romans 1:16, it says that IT (the gospel, singular) is the power of God unto salvation. If there is only one gospel, and by believing the gospel you receive, that moment, everlasting life, then any other message must be false. The letter to the Galatians explains it ever so clearly in chapter 1:

Galatians 1:6 I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel:

“Another” is the word heteros. It means another of a different kind.

Galatians 1:7 Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ.

“Another” in v.7 is the word allos, which means another of the same kind.

What Paul is saying is that the Galatian believers were being led astray by false teachers who did it with a different message. In v.7 Paul says that this different gospel perverts the true gospel. The word “pervert”, metastrepho, means, according to Vine’s Expository Dictionary, to transform into something of an opposite character”.

In other words, the false teachers introduced a “gospel” that could not save but just the opposite- it kept people lost and gave people a false hope. Paul has strong words for those who would add to the true gospel:

Galatians 1:8 But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.

9 As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.

What was the false gospel? The false gospel that the false teachers brought in added good works to faith in Christ. This is clearly brought out in chapter 2-

Galatians 2:16 Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.

How is a person saved? There’s only one way- by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone.

Ephesians 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.

In conclusion, let me wrap things up by giving a summary: The gospel is the good news that Jesus Christ died to pay for all of our sins and came back from the dead. If I put my faith in Him, that He did that for me, I receive that moment everlasting life as a free gift. If I have everlasting life as a present possession, then there are no other requirements to getting saved, for I already am saved. Therefore, any message that adds to faith alone in Christ alone, is a false, counterfeit message that cannot save.

I can rejoice in the simplicity of the gospel and my eternal security in Christ.

1 John 5:13 These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.

Tom Cucuzza   Voice of Assurance

Billy Graham, King of Lordship Salvation’s False Gospel!

From our friend, John

A friend of mine recently recommended an article from “Decision Magazine”, a periodical published by the Billy Graham Evangelistic Organization.  I went to the website for that magazine and perused the titles from several back issues, before coming across an article dated September 12, 2012, entitled “How to Be Sure You’re Saved.”

There were five steps offered by Graham, at least two of which constituted a false gospel of works.

They were as follows:

1.   You must recognize your need

2.   You must understand the cross

3.   You must count the cost

4.   You must take a definite step

5.   Allow God to change your life

Under number 3 (you must count the cost) is the following quote: 

“Many people come to Christ without first counting the cost. The cost includes repentance, the forsaking of sin, and a continual, daily, open acknowledgment of Christ in your life.”

My Comment: Graham is not clear whether he believes that “counting the cost” is a requirement for salvation or for discipleship.

Under number 4 (you must take a definite step), Graham is explicit in his view that something besides simple faith in Christ is required for salvation: 

“We ask people to make a public confession of Christ in our meetings because Christ demanded a definite commitment. Christ had reasons for demanding that people openly follow Him. He knew that an unwitnessed vow is no vow at all. Until you have surrendered to Christ by a definite act of your will, you are not a Christian.”

My comment:  there is no vow, commitment, or confession required to be a Christian.  Salvation is by Grace through faith in Christ alone.

Graham finishes with this invitation: 

“Would you not like to know that every sin is forgiven? Wouldn’t you like to know that you are ready to meet God? It could happen today, if you will only let Christ come into your heart. Invite Him in right now. The Bible says, “Whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved” (Romans 10:13).”

My comment:  this invitation is not Biblical.  One is saved by Grace through faith.  Once that happens, Jesus comes into his heart.  It is not the means by which one is saved.  It is the result.

I saw Billy Graham live once when I was in junior high.  We watched his crusades on television when I was growing up.  Now, I pass by the Billy Graham Library each time I drive to the airport.  I am reminded every time I see a billboard advertising Graham’s self-promoting “library” of the extent to which he is considered the authority on matters of faith by the religious establishment, government and the mainstream news media.  But, now that I believe the Gospel, I don’t believe Billy Graham.

Billy Graham was the leading icon of evangelicalism in the twentieth century.   His theme song was “Just As I Am.”  The words to the first verse read as follows: 

“Just as I am, without one plea

But that Thy blood was shed for me,

and that Thou bidst me come to thee,

O Lamb of God, I come, I come.”

If Billy Graham ever believed those words, he denies them by his current teaching.

Eternal Life is Simple and Free << Click

Christmas 2012 — Understand the True Meaning

Shepherds in the field

God’s message to the lowly Shepherds in the fields outside of Bethlehem – we take an unusual look at these precious, classic Bible verses which announced the birth of the Savior, Jesus Christ.

Luke 2:9-11
And, lo, the angel [messenger] of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be  to all people.  For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.

As we examine this classic verse – the emboldened words take on great new meaning.

(1) Good Tidings. Good News. The Greek word for this phrase is the exact same root word as the Gospel in Romans 1:16, It is the Power of God!!
“For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.”

(2) To All People: Greek: Pas; all, any, every, the whole. Imagine that!!  The Good News of Salvation is for ALL people. God’s offer is not just to a specific chosen or select group but ALL people. When The Lord says, “All” He means ALL people!!

(3) Born: To literally be born, brought forth, be delivered, be in travail — as of a virgin, Mary, the mother of Jesus. Jesus Christ did not just appear on earth but He was physically born as God’s “only begotten Son.” John 3:16

(4) A Savior, One Who Saves Jesus is not offering nor is He the Author of a bi-lateral contract to individuals, in which we offer Him something in exchange for salvation. No!! He is the Savior. He has done it all, He paid the price — it was finished on the Cross of Calvary.

(5) Christ: Gr. Christos; The Anointed One, The promised Messiah, the Holy appointed One.

(6) The Lord – Gr. Kurios; supreme in authority, God, Lord, master. Jesus Christ, thereby God in the Flesh!!

Therefore we see The Lord, the Christ, the Savior was born to benefit ALL people — and my dear friends, that IS the Good News, the Good Tidings, the Gospel of our salvation.

In all the glory of His birth some two thousand years ago, He came to die on the Cross in order to eternally redeem anyone from the sin-debt death penalty upon all. Anyone who makes the decision to place their trust/faith in Jesus Christ alone for their eternal salvation has that eternal salvation immediately.

Jesus Christ Himself speaking:
“Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life.” John 6:47

Further Biblical Proof: << Click

Berean Call Promoting – Not Only Calvinism But Now – The Terrible Lordship “Salvation” of Ray Comfort!

<img Ray Comfort 2

By Jack Weaver

We have mentioned here at ExPreacherMan.com how Dave Hunt’s ministry, The Berean Call has been compromised by promoting and favorably quoting Calvinists and Arminians in their weekly newsletters. In their latest newsletter, Monday, 17 Dec 2012, entitled, “‘Genius’ Movie Includes Look at Beatles’ John Lennon” the Berean Call published a glowing, favorable report on Ray Comfort’s latest Lordship Salvation movie, “Genius.”

If you wish to be sick, you may view the “Genius” video at:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o7pe3_VQbUM&feature=player_embedded

In the same newsletter The Berean Call also advertises another Ray Comfort DVD, Hell’s Best Kept Secret” The recommendation and advertising from The Berean Call asks the questions:

“What is the principle that Spurgeon, Wesley, Whitefield, and others used to reach the lost? Why has the church neglected it? This video provides the answers.”

The principle used by these men and their answer is Calvinism, Arminianism and radical “Turn from sin for salvation,” in other words a “works” message of Lordship Salvation. And that is exactly what Ray Comfort is preaching in his movie, “Genius”!

Comfort brings his audience to a realization of their sinfulness but then, as Dr. Tom Cucuzza wrote to me:

“The movie is filled with Comfort’s strong lordship salvation message. I saw it on line and was almost sick to my stomach.
“As always, he does ok in getting people to understand their lost condition, but then he puts the very strong ‘turn from sin’ and more for salvation to mess it up.”

I bit my lip and listened to the video clip and I agree with Tom completely. After Comfort convinced his audience of their sin, he tells his audience that, in order to obtain God’s Salvation, they must:

repent and be sorry for their sins and turn from their sins for their salvation. Then they must continue to do so and live in holiness to remain a Christian.” (approximate transcription from the video)

But with all of this apostasy, Tom’s point is true:

“My point in writing is not Ray Comfort, but how far The Berean Call has deteriorated.”

I’ve had a sickening feeling for some time. The Berean Call, i.e. Dave Hunt, published many years ago one of the best books exposing Calvinism that I have ever read, What Love is This?. He has, however, in the last couple of years, given favorable mention to and glowing quotes from, Leonard Ravenhill, Calvinist; from Gresham Machen (founder of The Orthodox Presbyterian church); C.H. Spurgeon, John MacArthur, Francis Schaeffer and CARM, a radical Calvinist Internet info site, etc. Putting them all together in context does make me sick and I wonder if Hunt and Tom McMahon have gone mad — condemning Calvinism on the one hand yet promoting false teachers, Calvinists and Lordship Salvationists on the other with their favorable quotes.

In all fairness I understand that Dave Hunt is no longer active in the management of The Berean Call due to illness and confinement.

The Truth of Free Salvation << Click

Southern Baptists’ Fragile Détente: The Fight over Competing False Gospels, Calvinism and Lordship “Salvation”

SBC

By our good friend, John 

The Southern Baptist Convention’s long-standing cooperation between traditional Lordship “Salvationists” and Calvinists has been getting testy of late.

The crux of the issue seems to be the surge of full-fledged 5-point Calvinism within the ranks of the SBC and the reaction from the still-majority of SBC members who oppose Calvinism, but until recently have seemed willing to tolerate it.

The SBC recently formed a team to determine how SBC traditionalists and Calvinists can work together.  Following is a quote from an article dated August 17, 2012, from “The Christian Post” entitled “Calvinism Debate:  Southern Baptists Form Team to Figure Out How to Work Together”:

“There are extremes on both sides that have garnered attention and I want us to pull us back together to that group who say ‘I may or may not be a Calvinist but I love Calvinists, I love non-Calvinists and we can and will do missions and evangelism together,’ Frank Page, president of the Southern Baptist Convention Executive Committee, said Thursday.”

This past summer, hundreds of Southern Baptists signed “A Statement of The Traditional Southern Baptist Understanding of God’s Plan of Salvation.”

Following are a couple of salient excerpts:

“For the most part, Southern Baptists have been glad to relegate disagreements over Calvinism to secondary status along with other important but ‘non-essential’ theological matters. The Southern Baptist majority has fellowshipped happily with its Calvinist brethren while kindly resisting Calvinism itself.”

And

“We affirm that any person who responds to the Gospel with repentance and faith is born again through the power of the Holy Spirit. He is a new creation in Christ and enters, at the moment he believes, into eternal life.”

The long-standing “Baptist Faith and Message” includes the Lordship “Salvation” concepts of “turning from sin” for salvation and “committing one’s life to Christ” for salvation.  See excerpt below:

“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.”

(Note:  Jack wrote a previous article called “Who Makes These Errors?” in which he commented on the SBC errant statement as follows: “…salvation is not by turning from sin nor by committing our ‘entire personality to Him as Lord’”). Link is: 

The sad part of the whole debate is that neither side is defending the REAL GOSPEL, which is salvation by Grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone.

Lordship “Salvation”, also known as “bi-lateral contract salvation” and Calvinism are both based on the same theological roots.  According to the “Grace Chart” that accompanies “The Gospel” by Ron Shea:

“Bilateral contract salvation” and the “Perseverance of the Saints” are two separate but interrelated doctrines within a complex theological system of salvation by works, which relies, at its core, on redefining the word “grace” as some sort of mystical empowering substance. This theological system is set forth in Thomas Aquinas’ Summa Theologica, Part 1 of the Second Part, Questions 109-114, “Treatise of Grace,” a 12th century manifesto of Roman Catholic Theology. In Protestantism, it is known as “Reformed Theology” or “Calvinism”.

The SBC, which is the largest Protestant denomination in the US, is now an amalgam of Lordship “Salvationists”, Calvinists and believers who lack the Biblical discernment, courage or good sense to disassociate from the SBC.

Eternal Life is Not Complicated But FREE

We “Cease not to give thanks for you,”


Rockwell “Thanksgiving”

By Jack Weaver

There are many things for which we are thankful here at ExPreacherMan from Bruce and me:

  1. For our Savior, The Lord Jesus Christ and His Free Gift of Salvation — by His Grace alone through our Faith alone in Jesus alone. What an amazing Gift from God!!!
  2. This thanks extends to each of you, our readers and commenters — from the day we first “met” you — and it will last throughout all eternity.
  3. For discernment for all of us in a time when churches and organized “religion” are drifting further and further from the Truth of God’s Word and His Grace into a system of false justification by human works.

This ministry would not exist without each of you our friends who visit here, read, comment and discuss God’s Word. Without you, this ministry would be only a shadow of what it is today. The Lord has used each of you to reach far beyond anything we could have imagined or expected in our prayers. We are reaching the world (into almost every continent) for Jesus Christ and His Grace.

Be assured that we will:

“Cease not to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my [our] prayers;” Ephesians 1:16

We do sincerely thank the Lord for you and for your prayers for this ministry — that we may see many souls saved for our Savior and many be freed from the shackles of Calvinism, Lordship “salvation” and other false teachings — by understand the reality and believing the Truth of God’s Salvation by Grace.

God’s Greatest Gift – Eternal Life << Click

Joyously Free From the Burden, Oppression and Depression of Lordship “Salvation” and Calvinism.

By Jack Weaver

This is a wonderfully encouraging note from Kim who, with her husband, was trapped in Calvinism and Lordship “salvation” for over 22 years, She proclaims they are both now Joyously Free From the Burden, Oppression and Depression of Lordship “Salvation” and Calvinism. This is her story.

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I’ve been ‘lurking’ on your ExPreacherMan site for a couple of months now, and I can happily say that my eyes have been opened and my life and faith have been changed completely because of the wonderful words of Truth contained on your site, which God has so graciously used to ‘change my mind’.

My husband and I had been swallowing the false Calvinism and Lordship Salvation teachings of R.C. Sproul and John MacArthur for 22 years, and me for 11 years before that, not realizing that they offered only false gospels.

In recent years, however, I found myself having more and more ‘trouble’ with the Calvinism teachings and emphases. So the Holy Spirit had been preparing me, I believe, for the day I came across your web site and discovered how truly disgraceful the teachings of Calvinism and Lordship Salvation are — false teachings offering false gospels, we now clearly see.

In searching for information on the book A Hole in Our Gospel by Richard Stearns, [Reviewed by Bruce Bauer] I got a hit on your site, and then came across the post You May Be a Lordship Salvationist If:” [By John] and began reading. I not only gained the information I needed to refute the unbiblical ‘social gospel’ message of Stearns’ book, which I knew to be error, but quickly saw the Truth of Free Grace as I read more and more of your posts and comments.

Now my husband and I are 100% Free Gracers, and are experiencing that wonderful feeling of a giant burden lifted! The oppression and depression of years of works and behavior focus are gone, and we’re finally enjoying and appreciating the wonder and joy of salvation by God’s Grace alone through Faith alone in Christ alone. So Thank You so much for your wonderful ministry at ExPreacherMan. We will keep reading!

Now we are looking for a Free Grace church in our area! Can you tell me, please, whether you recommend churches that are associated with the Evangelical Free Church of America organization? I know Chuck Swindoll was pastor of an EFCA church in Fullerton, California for years, but now has his own church in Frisco, TX that is not EFCA affiliated. In our search for DTS (Dallas Theological Seminary) churches, we found a couple near us that identify themselves as EFCA churches. By the way, unfortunately it was Calvinistic teachings which had infiltrated a DTS church that I landed in shortly after college that initially led me astray. And we are finding that LS teaching seems to be everywhere.

Thank you so much,
Kim

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Kim, thanks for your encouraging note. We are excited to read your email about how you and your husband have come to a clear understanding of Salvation by Grace alone through Faith alone in Jesus alone. We are blessed by your note!!! This will be a Thanksgiving in which we will give thanks to the Lord for you and with you.

About your question on EFC churches. My understanding is that they are a loose affiliation of churches with no real “set-in-concrete” Statement of Faith. Some of them may be OK but others wander all over the theological landscape — some are Calvinist and some LS.

I am sure our readers will rejoice with you and some may have suggestions for churches — but regrettably, we find good Free Grace churches are very few. If you wish to disclose your approximate general location, some of our readers may be able to help you with suggesting a church.

Heaven is truly FREE !!! << Click

Can Calvinism Be Proven By A Few Partial, Out-of-Context Verses?

By Jack Weaver

Lauren sent to me several partial Bible verses for explanation. She felt her selections, “make some of the strongest arguments for Calvinism.” In a later note she commented, “I would say I am not sure what I believe right now. I used to hold strongly to the reformed or Calvinist view and still think there is a lot in scripture to support it.”

I pray we will be able to present God’s Word convincingly and understandably to Lauren so she can rest in the Security and Peace of Salvation by her personal decision to put her faith and trust in Jesus Christ alone as her Savior and not depend upon the amorphous “promises” of Reformed/Calvinist teaching.

Because of my vision difficulties, I have elicited the help of our dear friend and my former Assistant Pastor, Dr. Tom Cucuzza, Pastor, Teacher, Lecturer and Author of  Secure Forever! – on Amazon << Click

We must be aware that Bible verses may be chopped up and taken out of context to prove just about any “religious” point.

Here are the partial, non-contextual verses Lauren submitted for explanation. Thank you Lauren:

Heb 12:2 in part, “looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith,”

Romans 9:16, “So then it is not of him who wills, nor of him who runs, but of God who shows mercy.”

Romans 9:18, “Therefore He has mercy on whom He wills, and whom He wills He hardens.”

John 5:21 in part “No one can come to Me unless the Father draws (drags) him.”, “even so the Son gives life to whom He will.”

John 15:16 in part, “You did not choose Me, but I chose you…”

John 3:3 “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again (from above) he cannot see the kingdom of God”

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The complete verses with detailed contextual explanations from Dr. Cucuzza are:

1.
John 6:44 “
No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.”

The word “draw” is never translated as drag in the KJV. It can mean that, but she is insinuating that God does it and accomplishes salvation regardless of man’s will. That is nowhere in the text.

a. How is a person drawn? V.45 gives the clear answer: We are drawn through the ministry of the Word of God. And this is available for all mankind, not just a select few.

John 6:45 “It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God. Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me.”

Romans 10:17 “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”

b. We are also drawn by the Holy Spirit, but He draws everyone.

John 16:8 “And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment:
9 Of sin, because they believe not on me;
10 Of righteousness, because I go to my Father, and ye see me no more;
11 Of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged.”

c. Also, through the death of Christ we are drawn.

John 12:32 “And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me.”

2.
John 5:21 “For as the Father raiseth up the dead, and quickeneth them; even so the Son quickeneth whom he will.”

This verse is answered in v.24. He gives life to all those who believe.

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.

3.
Romans 9:14
“What shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness with God? God forbid.
15 For he saith to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion.
16 So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy.”

Romans 9-11 is talking about the national election of the Jews for God’s purpose in the world, not personal election to salvation.

In Romans 9:14-16 The Lord didn’t have to show mercy to anyone. But He will accomplish His plan for the ages by showing grace to mankind. Israel is still in existence today because the Lord did not wipe them out in the days of Moses.
Romans 9:17 “For the scripture saith unto Pharaoh, Even for this same purpose have I raised thee up, that I might shew my power in thee, and that my name might be declared throughout all the earth.
18 Therefore hath he mercy on whom he will have mercy, and whom he will he hardeneth.
19 Thou wilt say then unto me, Why doth he yet find fault? For who hath resisted his will?
20 Nay but, O man, who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to him that formed it, Why hast thou made me thus?
21 Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour?”

vs. 17-21 Pharaoh, the leader of Egypt,  already had a wicked attitude toward the children of Israel in the early chapters of Exodus. He did not want to let them go, for he wanted them as slaves for his own glory. The Lord knew (foreknowledge) in eternity past that Pharaoh would be the way he was and therefore used him to show the world the power of Jehovah God, the LORD. It had nothing to do with God making it impossible for Pharaoh to be saved and go to Heaven.

The Bible does say in Exodus that the Lord hardened Pharaoh’s heart, but it also says that Pharaoh hardened his own heart. Which is true? Both! The Lord’s will and plan for Israel was the factor that hardened Pharaoh’s heart. God hardened Pharaoh’s heart by continually testing him. The Lord knew (foreknowledge) that Pharaoh would not change his mind about the Israelites, and therefore used him to accomplish the Divine purpose. Not one verse in the Bible says that Pharaoh couldn’t believe in the Messiah. He chose to reject the God of Moses.

4.
John 15:16
“Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.”

He was speaking to His disciples (already saved people) about their discipleship and service, not salvation. That you should go and bring forth fruit. It was their choice on whether they would obey Him in this regard or not. This verse has nothing to do with salvation, but with the purpose of the Christian life.

 5.
John 3:3 “
Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

This refers of course to the new birth. If we simply read further down to v. 14-18 we see HOW a person is born again- by trusting Christ alone as Savior. And this is open to the world, v.16-17.

John 3:14 “And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up:
15 That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
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.”

6.
Hebrews 12:2 “
Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.”

Again, v.2 cannot be divorced from v.1

Hebrews 12:1 “Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,”

I cannot see anywhere the Calvinistic bent or interpretation in v.2. What is the point? Yes, He is the captain and prince, and author if you will, of our faith. But it means He is the head, the leader. We are looking unto Him to lead us through the entire Christian life.

“Author”: Originator, founder, leader, chief, first, prince, as distinguished from simply being the cause. AMG’s Complete Word Study Dictionaries.

Dr. Tom Cucuzza Northland Bible Baptist Church

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We appreciate the questions from Lauren and especially for Dr. Cucuzza taking his time to answer. We also pray Lauren and others will decide to believe the Truth that salvation is free and only available through an individual’s choice to believe by Grace alone through faith alone in Jesus Christ alone.

We must never depend upon the false Calvinist teaching that some are “elect” by God to be saved and consequently ALL others, (me, you, our friends and relatives) have no choice or chance to make that decision to believe in Jesus Christ for salvation.

Eternal Life in Heaven is For Anyone << Click

An Australian Gentleman’s Journey Toward True Faith

By Jack Weaver
Today, through the world-wide outreach which the Lord provides through the ExPreacherMan web site, we received an email from a kind and concerned gentleman named Bill from Australia. He has been desperately searching for the Truth of God’s Word for several years and we think his story and plea (typical of so many) needs to be told. We will make a few comments at the end of his note and will be appreciative if our ExPreacherMan friends and co-laborers with Christ will kindly comment, encourage and advise Bill further about his search for true free Grace Faith. There is much to cover.

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Hi [ExPreacherMan], This is really a lengthy letter but I will try to be as brief as possible.

Through my addiction to alcohol and being destitute, about 10 years ago I was forced to come to believe in God to get out of my predicament.  I did and started going to church.  Actually several as I couldn’t get comfortable with any.

My whole [life] turned around and I was forced to realise that it was God doing all the turning.  As my work in AA has me getting others to come to believe in God, I thought I’d start reading his Word.  I have been reading the bible for about 7 years and thought I was doing so well because everything in my life was going so great.

A couple of years ago, one of the people I was helping asked me “how did you come to have such a strong faith, where did you get it?” I wasn’t able to truthfully answer them.

I started attending bible studies here in Australia and then on the internet.  I learned a bit but decided I didn’t know enough.  I started a bible study with some Jehovah’s Witnesses a few months ago and although I can’t believe any of their doctrine was impressed with their bible knowledge.

We just don’t have any basic Christian Bible studies here.  I came upon your link from another site and felt like I might hit the motherlode.

Can you offer me any advice on reading the Bible, which Bible to use and maybe a beginners program of Books to read.

Sorry for taking up all you space.  Thanks in advance for any help.

Regards, Bill  🙂

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Bill, thanks so much for your note and questions. We agree that you have hit the “motherlode” here at ExPreacherMan.com. We welcome your thoughts.

You have made many statements and proposed questions which deserve answers. We, our regular friends and commenters here will do our very best to help you in your search for Biblical Truth and answers.

1) First, and very obvious, we noticed that you did not mention the name of our Savior, Jesus Christ and His salvation. Jesus is the very Center and Reason for the entire Bible from Genesis through the Book of Revelation. The most accurate Bible to use is the Authorized King James Version (KJV) Bible. We would recommend first reading the Book of John which illustrates God’s Free salvation and, perhaps along with that, the Book of Galatians, which is best described as God’s teaching and emphasis upon His free Grace and Faith in Jesus Christ alone for salvation — without dependence upon our good works.

2) You are correct about the doctrine of Jehovah’s Witnesses. Through their own perversion of the Bible they call “The New World Translation,” their teaching is false for many reasons. For one, they do not believe in the Deity and Saving Nature of our Savior, The Lord Jesus Christ. Without Him, no “religion” has any power to save. Th JWs also falsely teach that “salvation” can be earned by one’s good works.

3) AA is seemingly an effective organization for convincing those with addictions to overcome them and we are so encouraged that you have done so. AA was a place where you may have begun your search for Truth but is not the place to find correct Bible doctrine and teachings about personal Faith in Jesus Christ as the only Way of Eternal Salvation.

In order for you to understand and explain to others about faith it is essential that you are trusting Jesus Christ yourself, by Grace alone through Faith alone in Christ alone as your own Savior..

Bill, our first concern is that you understand and believe the GOSPEL which is; that Jesus Christ, God in the Flesh, died for all your sins, past, present and future; thereby paying the death penalty we deserve to pay; He was dead, buried and then  arose from the grave for you. He is alive today. By believing (Faith) in The Savior Jesus Christ alone, you can be absolutely guaranteed of  Eternal Life with God’s Righteousness, in Heaven with the Lord Jesus. A great place to start this journey from here is to read and believe God’s Word contained in our article on Eternal Life For You. << Click

We are aware there are many very active Calvinist/Presbyterian Churches in Australia, and we would recommend you steer clear of those folks — they breed confusion.

Then we highly recommend you open and download two excellent free booklets from our web site: Two Free Gospel Booklets << Click writtenby our good friend, Dr. Tom Cucuzza.

Sadly, there are not many books we recommend that are clear and free of error about the Gospel message of salvation. One outstanding exception and an example of the very best is Secure Forever by Dr. Tom Cucuzza. His book is available from Amazon in standard book form or in E-Book downloadable format.  Secure Forever! << Click

Our friends here may have a few other good recommendations.

Bill, be assured that we and many others here will be praying for you and your friends. Thanks again for your note.

In John 3:16-18, Jesus said:
For God so loved the world [you], that he gave his only begotten Son [Jesus], that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
He that believeth on him
[Jesus] 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].

In Jesus Christ Eternally, Jack

Latest on Paul Washer: Paul Washer Again Proclaims a Lordship “Salvation” Message and Worse.

By Jack Weaver

“But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.” Galatians 1:8

A dear friend, Holly Garcia, wanted my opinion and forwarded to me a note and link to Paul Washer’s video talk (with text) sometime during 2009, “10 Indictments of the Church.” I will not include the link since we do not advertise apostate preachers.

I read Washer’s “sermon,” which was addressed to preachers and teachers in his audience. I found only very few points with which I could agree but I disagreed with all of his solutions. Overall he is teaching (in a very delightful yet threatening and powerful manner) his same old false message. He is a doctrinaire Calvinist and a preacher of a false repentance, “turn from sin Lordship ‘salvation'” message. His emphasis was about the problem of carnality of the church. Yes, many Christians are carnal but Washer’s message of putting believers under the law of behavior is not Biblical, but deceitful and will not cure Christian carnality. Such a message of probationary “salvation” denies God’s free Grace Salvation and will also turn off an unbeliever.

I have excerpted just a few of many passages which indicate some idea of his atrocious errors. I will indent excerpts from Washer and my comment below will be in red.

Washer is speaking about preachers of whom he approves:

“They are reading Spurgeon and Whitefield. They are still listening to Ravenhill and Martin Lloyd-Jones and Tozer and Wesley and it is a great, incredible movement.”

Details about each of these men Washer recommends are:

  • Spurgeon, Lordship Salvationist, Calvinist and a “turn-from-sin for salvation” preacher.
  • Whitefield, Calvinist.
  • Ravenhill an Arminian, (no eternal security),
  • Martin Lloyd-Jones, Calvinist and Presbyterian,
  • Tozer, Deeper Life teacher – mystic and Lordship “Salvationist” before it was called that.
  • Wesley -Arminian — lose your “salvation” or a “no eternal security” preacher — founder of Methodism.

Any Gospel preacher worthy of the title would not praise and recommend these teachers.

Washer speaking of regeneration:

“We have traded regeneration for decisionism.”

Calvinists like Washer believe that there are some folks “chosen or elected” by God from the beginning to be saved, to believe in Christ and as such are regenerated before believing in Christ, therefore enabling them to believe. The rest of the world is thereby ignored and is consigned to their deserved condemnation in hell. That is False Reformed/Calvinist doctrine. The Truth is that a lost person (unbeliever) must make a personal decision to trust Jesus Christ alone as his/her Savior (salvation does not come by osmosis). God will not force either belief or faith upon anyone. Salvation is God’s Gift to be taken, only by Grace alone through Faith alone in Jesus Christ alone. (Ephesians 2:8-9)

Washer – on his own theology:

“Although I am leaning more toward, I guess I call myself a five point Spurgeonist, I want you to know this.”

Spurgeon is the darling of those who would put all Christians under the Law of works or behavior rather than God’s Grace. So now in order for you to see why Paul Washer patterns his false message after his idol, here is the actual text of one of Spurgeon’s sermons titled: Turn or Burn – Spurgeon.

Washer on “fruit”:

“[S]alvation is by faith alone. It is a work of God. It is a grace upon grace upon grace. But the evidence of conversion is not just your examination of your sincerity at the moment of your conversion. It is the on going fruit in your life. It is the ongoing fruit in your life.”

Washer, like all Lordship “salvationists”, sets himself up as the behavioral judge of how much and for how long “fruit” is sufficient or necessary to prove to him (Washer), your pastor or yourself, that you really are a believer in Christ. Fruit may be an evidence that a person is a believer but absolutely does not determine or prove to anyone whether or not one is a believer in Jesus Christ. Catholics, Buddhists, Mormons and many other false religions may demand and produce “good works” (which some call “fruit”) but these folks, by their teachings, are not believers in Jesus Christ alone as their Savior.

So let us conclude that “Fruit Inspectors” cannot determine if one is a believer in Christ or not. Therefore, I thank God that He KNOWS that I have trusted Jesus Christ alone as my Savior — and He keeps me as His Possession and safe eternally!!!

Scripture asserts that God does not need our “fruit” to prove to Him that we are believers, nor do we. God knows and we know whether or not we have trusted Christ as Savior. (1 John 5:13)

Here are other articles we have published at ExPreacherMan.com about Paul Washer:

Paul Washer Redefines the Plan of Salvation, Obliterating Assurance of Salvation << Click

Paul Washer, Lordship Salvation and Repentance<< Click

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Eternal Life is The Gift of God << Click

Theological Problems With Faith as God’s Gift


Thanks to a wonderful friend, Terry Treude we publish this excerpt from Dr. Charlie Bing. This treatise demolishes the illogical concept of Calvinism, Reformed teaching and Lordship Salvation. Please read this; don’t be fooled and drawn away into those false doctrines.
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Those who view faith as a gift interpret man’s condition, described in Ephesians 2:1 as “dead in trespasses and sins,” as a total inability to respond to God in a positive way. But that phrase describes man’s total separation from God, not his inability to respond to God. Sinful man is totally separated from God and therefore without eternal life. Man retains the image of God to some degree; it was severely marred in the fall, but not totally destroyed. Acts 10:2 describes Cornelius before he came to know Jesus Christ as Savior as a devout man who feared God, gave alms, and prayed to God (and God heard his prayers! Acts 10:31). In Acts 17 the Athenians did not have the proper object of faith but worshiped idols. Paul encourages them to seek to know their “unknown God” which of course is Jesus Christ. Men can seek God in their unsaved state as God draws them (John 6:28-29, 44-45).

Another theological problem with the view of faith as a gift of God is that it misunderstands the nature of faith. Faith is not (as they claim) a divine energy, a special power, or an infused dynamic. That confuses faith with the power of the Holy Spirit. Faith is simply faith. It means that one is convinced or persuaded that something is true so that there is a personal appropriation of that truth. There is not a special kind of faith for eternal salvation. There is only a special object of faith—Jesus Christ. The kind of faith one might have in Buddha is no different from the kind of faith that one can have in Jesus. The only difference is the object: Buddha does not save; Jesus saves. To make faith the power of salvation is to confuse faith with the Holy Spirit. According to Ephesians 2:8 grace is the grounds of salvation and faith is the means by which we appropriate that grace. Properly speaking we are not saved by faith, but through faith.

To show that faith is not a meritorious work, the Bible contrasts faith in Christ with meritorious works in both Ephesians 2:8-9 and Romans 4:4-5. Faith means exactly that we can do nothing for our salvation. We can only receive salvation as a gift. Faith is like an empty hand that simply accepts a gift.” ~Dr.Charlie Bing, GraceLife Ministries (excerpt from full article provided at the link)

Dr. Charlie Bing: Is Faith in Jesus Christ a Gift of God? << Click

Lordship Salvation: Blinded from the Light; Satan’s Devious Campaign Tricks

By our friend and Brother in Christ, John

2 Corinthians 4:3-4

“But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost.  In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.”

Satan, the god of this world, uses the same types of tricks to blind people from the truth as politicians use to get votes.  Here is a sample:

1.     Celebrity endorsements:

Politicians have their shills and Satan has his.   Satan’s shills include a legion of denominational leaders, evangelists, best-selling authors, famous preachers and television ministers who will tell you that something else besides trusting in Christ is necessary in order to be saved.  These are seen as the voices of authority.  So, as Dr. Tom Cucuzza said in his sermon entitled “The Obvious That Isn’t so Obvious”:

“…people automatically want to believe the authority and so what that does is it leads people astray, into something that’s false and they believe that.

And then, when someone comes along with the true Gospel of Grace, that says your sins have been bought and paid for by the blood of Jesus Christ, once and for all, and that all you can do to be saved is to put your faith in Him, trust in Him as your Savior, they say this: “I can’t believe that. That’s too easy. That’s easy believism. That’s cheap grace.”

2.      Card stacking

This approach is used by false teachers, who cite a few verses that allegedly support salvation by works, with no attempt to mention or explain away the 100 plus verses of Scripture that teach that eternal life is a free gift received by Grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone.  This is an intellectually vapid exercise that Clear Gospel Campaign describes as follows:

“A few have tried to dismiss the hundred plus verses by the wave of a magic wand, mumbling some idiotic and lexically untenable statement, such as ‘the word ‘faith actually implies works in the root meaning of the word.’ Most, however, don’t even try to answer Scripture.  They simply play the ‘you’ve got your verses, and I’ve got mine’ game. This is what the cults do, placing their hands over their ears, closing their eyes, and repeating their proof texts at the top of their lungs so that nothing else can penetrate the barrier.  And that is not theology.  In contrast, only a few verses in all of Scripture can be reasonably interpreted (in isolation) as teaching that some human work is necessary for salvation.  And when scrutinized, those passages invariably yield to alternative interpretations that are consistent with the doctrine of grace.”

3.      Projection

 This is where the enemy accuses you of doing the same thing he does.  For example, telling you that the 100 plus verses that teach that eternal life is a free gift received by faith are being taken out of context.

4.      Bandwagon

Satan will attempt to convince you that since most people believe something, it must be true.  A good example of this is “repent of sins to be saved”.  Again, from Clear Gospel Campaign:

“The phrase ‘repent of your sins,’ is so embedded in Christian culture that it is hard to hear the word ‘repent’ without mentally adding on the three words ‘from your sins.’  And since the word ‘repent’ is often associated with eternal salvation, this leads to further adding on, either mentally, or verbally from the pulpit,  the words ‘to be saved’ to the end of the sentence.  Together, they form the greatest myth in the history of Christianity . . . ‘You must repent of your sins to be saved.’

This belief is not only wrong, it is an error that threatens the eternal destiny of every man, woman and child on the planet.  For it reduces the gospel of grace to a gospel of works.”

Whether you are an honest seeker, a Lordship Salvation troll or just happened upon this site, please tune out all of Satan’s campaign tricks and see the link below for how you can have eternal life through Jesus Christ.

Eternal Life – God’s Gift to You << Click

Not Lordship “Salvation”

By Jack Weaver

With your indulgence we will depart slightly from our normal postings exposing and opposing Lordship “salvation.”  The videos below contain wonderful, all-time favorite Military Marches, simply exhibiting American Exceptionalism of times past.

America is still Exceptional, yet not recognized as such by many today.

I am aware that we have readers and visitors from all over the world but, if you will, please bear with us for a time while we present (and you enjoy) this wonderful collection of marches, which for all practical purposes have disappeared from the American scene.

You may turn these videos on and enjoy the marches as background music while you peruse the rest of our web site.

America The Beautiful

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These Marches Are Secular and Temporary but Eternal Life is FOREVER. << Click

A Distressed Young Man, Francis Chan and Lordship “Salvation”

By Jack Weaver

Below is a distressing note from a young man who is tragically unsure of his salvation. I am terribly distressed when I read his words and thoughts. We need to pray for him and many like him who have been confused by false teachers like Francis Chan, John MacArthur, John Piper, Paul Washer and others.

We witness many visitors to our web site who have been victims of the teaching of Lordship “salvation.” We see many who have finally and joyously understood the real meaning of God’s Free Grace and have trusted, not their behavior, not their works — but Jesus Christ alone as their eternal Savior.

Because of the nature and content of his letter, I will assign to him an assumed name of “Joseph.” I will also highlight in bold parts of his email, some areas of his concern and our possible discussion. I pray some of our readers will offer Joseph scriptural answers to his concerns.

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Hello. I have seen your website a couple of times. I usually end up on your site when looking up stuff about Francis Chan.

I really don’t know how to start this email, so I’ll just dive right in I guess. I need help. I need prayer.

For years now, ever since I started college, more so in my second year of college, I have continually and constantly had nagging doubts about my salvation. I still to this day continue to have these doubts.

I will confess something to you first, however. Also since I started college, I have had a continual worry about evangelism. The thing is, I am uncomfortable talking with strangers, and as a result, have had trouble evangelizing them, almost not doing so at all. I have told my friends the gospel, but not usually right away. I am a person who struggles a lot with fear as well.

I know the gospel message of grace. I have told it to people, to myself, and I have been comforted by the grace of Jesus Christ toward me as a sinner. But always, without fail, my assurance goes away. I become increasingly more aware of my sin, which is good of course, but I then question my salvation.

The Bible teaches that good works follow those who believe. I look at my life, and have trouble seeing them. If I do see them, I question my motives. I’m a mess, in short. I am tired of not having any peace. I am tired of clamming up like a turtle because of my fear of judgment.

I know I have so many sins to deal with in my life. There are things i know I am not even aware of. You seem to be a person that loves the gospel of grace. Is there any words you can offer me for help?

I want to trust in Jesus Christ, and I do, but sometimes, I get scared that because I don’t do certain things, like evangelize often, I am not really saved.

I am in seminary now, and the problem is getting worse. Please help. I hope this all makes sense.

“Joseph”

Joseph, we do understand your consternation and pray we can help you see God’s absolute assurance in Jesus Christ through His Word.

I will take a few of your concerns and address them:

  • You have been taught falsely that good works will follow those who believe. NOT TRUE, the Bible says believers SHOULD (not must) walk in good works (Ephesians 2:10) Nowhere in God’s Word does He say that a lack of good works condemns a person. Yes, believers SHOULD (not must) do good works but, by His Grace, we have that choice.
  • Be warned that some churches and seminaries teach that one must “Repent of or turn from sin”to be saved and/or stay saved. Read the Statement of Faith of your seminary. Such a statement is false doctrine. See this article:

    False Repentance, Perseverance and Lordship “salvation”

  • Very important. Your assurance does not depend upon your behavior or feelings — but solely upon God’s Word.
    “These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God [Jesus]; that ye may KNOW that ye have eternal life, …  1 John 5:13 Believing that Jesus’ death and resurrection to pay your sin debt (which is death) is sufficient personally for you. Your belief/trust in Jesus is your guarantee of salvation. Jesus says to you: “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life. John 6:47 plus hundreds more similar verses.
  • Discard Francis Chan. His false teaching is misleading you and thousands of others. Use the search bar on this web site (upper right column) for “Francis Chan” and additionally read Bruce’s accurate articles about Chan’s apostasy here:

    Francis Chan – Failure to Help the Poor Could Send You to Hell

    Francis Chan’s Speech to 5000+ Christian Youths, Questions Their Faith

  • If your seminary training has not by now shown you how to have absolute assurance from scripture, you should seriously consider a change of seminaries. And one of the best is a good, solid Bible College Dayspring Bible College and Seminary in Illinois.
  • Go to Gospel Campaign’s web site, read and download the Gospel Booklet. It is very simple and clear.
  • Joseph if you indeed “know the Gospel of Grace” I question whether you actually sincerely believe it. See also our page: Eternal Life For You – Guaranteed!!
  • Don’t worry about evangelizing anyone until you are absolutely sure of your own salvation. I can imagine it would be difficult trying to explain salvation assurance in Jesus Christ when you do not have it yourself. But when you do understand and have that assurance then, by all means, enthusiastically share that freeing Good News with others. That Truth shall make you (and them) FREE!! “And ye shall know the TRUTH, and the truth shall make you free.” John 8:32

Joseph, I am confident others will offer suggestions and encouragement to you from God’s Word. These are only a few thoughts but you must realize your assurance cannot rest in your behavior or works but only in Jesus Christ. He is necessary, He is enough and in Him alone is True Salvation.

Please join us in this discussion.