Author Archives: johninnc

Lordship Salvation: No Thanksgiving

By johninnc

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

The Bible describes eternal life as the gift of God.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Lordship Salvation’s Shell Game

By johninnc

From Wikipedia: The shell game (also known as thimblerig, three shells and a pea, the old army game) is portrayed as a gambling game, but in reality, when a wager for money is made, it is almost always a confidence trick used to perpetrate fraud. In confidence trick slang, this swindle is referred to as a short-con because it is quick and easy to pull off.

We refer to the Expreacherman ministry as an “oasis of grace,” because we want our readers to be able to learn about God’s amazing grace in an environment that steadfastly rejects any attacks on the integrity of the gospel of Christ.

Romans 1:16: 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.

We are very happy when someone who is searching for truth comes to Expreacherman, because we exist to proclaim and defend the gospel, and we believe that God has used this ministry to plant the gospel and water the ground on which it has been planted. We also know that it is God who gives the increase.

1 Corinthians 3:7-9: [7] So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase. [8] Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour. [9] For we are labourers together with God: ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building.

Because this is one of a very few ministries that preaches the gospel in its purity, we often find ourselves under attack from those who seek to soil, or corrupt the gospel message. People who are uncomfortable with grace, are the enemies of grace, or who consort with the enemies of grace either trot out – or are trotted out – to corrupt our readers from the simplicity of the gospel. They are both deceived and deceivers, whom we would like to be delivered from their deception.

Following are descriptions of three prototypical antagonists who venture onto Expreacherman in an attempt to lure us away from the truth:

1. The person who has never understood or believed the gospel message.

Matthew 13:19: When any one heareth the word of the kingdom, and understandeth it not, then cometh the wicked one, and catcheth away that which was sown in his heart. This is he which received seed by the way side.

2. The person who has believed in Jesus as Savior, but who has been subsumed by the teaching of Lordship “salvation.”

Luke 8:13: They on the rock are they, which, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, which for a while believe, and in time of temptation fall away.

3. The person who believes in Jesus as Savior, but is willing to “go along to get along” with people who corrupt the gospel for some pecuniary benefit (such as selling books, leading a large congregation, having a prominent position in a “convention,” or having a comfortable social outlet for oneself or one’s children).

Mark 4:19: And the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things entering in, choke the word, and it becometh unfruitful.

Like the shell game, Satan uses each one of these groups of antagonists to commit and perpetuate fraud.

All three groups are used to keep lost people from understanding and believing the gospel.

Luke 8:5: A sower went out to sow his seed: and as he sowed, some fell by the way side; and it was trodden down, and the fowls of the air devoured it.

All three groups are used to bewitch believers.

Galatians 3:1: O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth, crucified among you?

And, finally, all three groups play a part in hindering the fruitfulness of believers, thereby producing more worthless things in God’s eyes than those things worthwhile in God’s eyes.

1 Corinthians 3:15: If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.

Antagonists, both at Expreacherman, and in other places to which the antagonists run to commiserate with fellow antagonists, have criticized us for not allowing them to have free reign at Expreacherman to teach their false doctrine.

We welcome questions, and will attempt to answer them. But, once we determine that someone is here to promote false gospels or to corrupt the gospel we will not allow them to continue to comment.

Galatians 2:5: To whom we gave place by subjection, no, not for an hour; that the truth of the gospel might continue with you.

We believe that this is both biblical, and vitally important to ensuring that Expreacherman remains an oasis of grace.

If you would like to know how to have eternal life, click here: THE GOSPEL

Enough is Enough

By johninnc

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.

We have received a flurry of emails, of late, expressing concern that our gospel presentations leave out certain essential details regarding God, Jesus, the atonement for our sins provided by the Lord Jesus Christ, and so on.

We believe that it is important for a believer to grow in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  But, we must be careful not to insist that someone MUST know and believe EVERYTHING we know and believe in order to have eternal life. Otherwise, we can eviscerate the assurance of believers, and distract ourselves from our mission of promoting the gospel.

Please note that we are not advocating or excusing theological error, nor are we promoting a gospel message without content. Nor do we want to start a debate.

Following is a summary plan of salvation that we believe has sufficient content for someone to hear (or read) and believe unto eternal life:

1. Everyone is a sinner.
2. The penalty for sin is death (eternal separation from God in a place of conscious torment – hell).
3. One must be perfect to get into heaven. Not good. Not great. Perfect.
4. One cannot do anything of himself to obtain this perfection – this includes turning from sin, committing your life to Christ and so on. God offers eternal life as a gift – it’s not for sale or barter.
5. God provided a sin-bearer for us (The Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, God in the flesh. He had no sin of his own, but he came to die for us, paying the full penalty for our sin. He was raised from the dead, proving that His payment was accepted).
6. All we can do to receive everlasting life is to believe in Jesus Christ as our Savior.
7. Eternal life, once received by faith in Christ, can never be lost or forfeited, no matter what happens in our lives down the road.

What is there to do to receive eternal life? Simply BELIEVE that Jesus made that payment for your sin – for you.

If you would like additional information regarding the gospel, please click here: THE GOSPEL

 

 

Lordship Salvation: MEtheism

By johninnc

2 Corinthians 4:3-4: But of 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. 

In reading countless comments from Lordship “salvationists” who condemn adherents of other false religions, as well as godless atheists, it has dawned on me that Lordship “salvationists” are actually MEtheists. That is, their god is not the God of the Bible. Rather it is a false god that they have constructed that is a hybrid of the true God and themselves.

For a background definition of Lordship “salvation,” please see link below:

https://expreacherman.com/♦-lordship-salvation-defined/

While Lordship “salvationists” may give lip service to acknowledging that the Bible is God’s word, they imagine all sorts of contradictions, paradoxes, and “tensions” lie therein.

As Ron Shea notes:

Rather than coming to scripture to learn the mind of God, some unregenerate men approach scripture to justify the views they already hold…

Not surprisingly therefore, those who think that they, rather than Jesus Christ, are the Savior of their own souls have, for centuries, sought from scripture proof texts to justify this conclusion.

Like other religions, Lordship “salvation” is man’s attempt to establish his own righteousness.

Romans 10:2-3: For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge. For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves to the righteousness of God.

The Lordship “salvationist” seems indignant that other people do not follow God’s laws – laws that he also does not follow.

Often, he constructs his own moral “code of conduct” that, in his mind, replaces God’s perfect law. If he is successful in following this code, or is at least trying, he thinks this helps justify him to God.

But, this is pure foolishness.  Anyone who tries to keep the law to be justified must keep it all to be justified.

Galatians 3:10: For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things that are written in the book of the law to do them.

And, if he thinks that others have no code, or a more relaxed code, that might indicate that they don’t have eternal life.

Romans 2:1: Therefore, thou art inexcusable O man, whosoever thou art that judgest: for wherein thou judgest another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest doest the same things. 

Lordship “salvation” is highly focused on “life change,” or comparative conduct, for evidence of eternal life in others, or assurance of eternal life in oneself.

But, the Bible says that we are justified by faith, without the deeds of the law.

Romans 3:28: Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law.

For anyone “on the fence,” who thinks that good works are an essential evidence of eternal life, the Bible says otherwise:

John 5:24: Verily, verily I say unto you, He that heareth my word,  and believeth in him that sent me, hath everlasting life and shall not come into condemnation, but is passed from death unto life. 

Please note in the above verse that there is absolutely no reference to life change, sinning less, or comparing oneself to others – or even comparing oneself to oneself before becoming a believer.

If, while reading this article, you have realized that you might be trusting in your own works for eternal life – either in whole are in part – and are tired of being on that treadmill, please consider the following invitation:

Matthew 11:28: Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 

If you have believed in the false gospel of MEtheism, and would like to know the truth, please click here:

THE GOSPEL

Lordship Salvation: Saved by the Bell?

By johninnc

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.

I recently read an article, written by Tim Funk, entitled Christians too often ‘massacre, misquote’ Bible to make political points, says Rob Bell.

By way of background, Rob Bell is a writer, and a former pastor, who several years ago wrote the Universalist Manifesto Love Wins.

Wikipedia defines Christian Universalism as follows:

Christian Universalism is a school of Christian theology which includes the belief in the doctrine of universal reconciliation, the view that all human beings will ultimately be restored to a right relationship with God in Heaven and the New Jerusalem.

(Please note that there is no biblical basis for the so-called school of Christian theology that has everyone – believer and nonbeliever alike – receive eternal life.)

In reading the article about Rob Bell, and in reflecting on comments I have read from others who have drifted into, or toward the false doctrine of universalism, it seems evident that at the heart of universalism is man’s works, not God’s grace. After all, God wouldn’t send a non-believer to hell, especially if he were a really good non-believer. And, since there is no quantification standard for what constitutes a good person, God will let everyone in. Right?

Wrong. The Bible is explicitly clear that we must be perfect, not just good, to get into heaven.

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

The Bible is also explicitly clear that eternal salvation comes only to those who believe in Jesus as Savior – who have Christ’s imputed perfection.

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.

The Bible also says that our works are not at issue in determining whether or not we have eternal life.

Ephesians 2:8-9: [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.

Rob Bell doesn’t seem to believe the truth. His inflection point in rejecting these biblical truths seems to have been his inability to reconcile his sense of justice with God’s justice. Following is an extensive quote from the article:

What sent Bell down his current path can be traced to an art show held by his church. One attendee saw a piece of artwork quoting Gandhi, the Hindu apostle of non-violence, and left a note reading “Reality check: He’s in hell.”

That prompted Bell to write the best-selling “Love Wins,” and release  a video promoting it that began with the pastor saying: “Gandhi’s in hell? He is? And someone knows this for sure? And felt the need to let the rest of us know?”

Bell concluded the video by saying that, in the Bible, love wins.

As for the idea that God would cast into hell a Gandhi as well as billions of non-Christians, he said: “This is why lots of people want nothing to do with the Christian faith. They see it as an endless list of absurdities and inconsistencies and they say, ‘Why would I ever want to be part of that?’ ”

So, because he cannot reconcile the truth of God’s justice with his own sense of justice, Rob Bell has wrongly determined that the biblical plan of salvation is not true.

There is nothing inconsistent or absurd about God’s plan of salvation for mankind. Rather, it is beautiful and amazing! And, while we can’t know whether or not a specific person, such as Gandhi, has eternal life, we do know from the Bible that only those who have believed in Jesus as Savior have eternal life.

In a similar way, the Lordship “salvationist” (LSer) cannot accept that his sense of justice varies from God’s justice. But, the Bible makes it clear that man’s ways and God’s ways differ.

Isaiah 55:8: For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD.

The LSer believes that Jesus is necessary for eternal life, but that He is not enough. Please see below for a definition of Lordship “salvation”:

Lordship “salvation” defined.

In contrast to Rob Bell, the LSer does not think that everyone will be saved. The LSer thinks that only those who believe in Jesus and have the attendant works (never really defined in terms of nature or extent) will be saved.

What Rob Bell and LSers have in common is a rejection of faith in Christ alone as the only path to eternal life.

Jesus had this to say regarding His exclusivity:

John 14:6: Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

Who should we believe – Jesus – or those who claim there is some other way?

If you would like to know how to have eternal life, click here: THE GOSPEL

New Booklet from Dr. Thomas Cucuzza: “The Alls”

Dr. Thomas Cucuzza, pastor of Northland Bible Baptist Church in St. Cloud, Minnesota, has written an exciting new booklet. It is entitled “The Alls of Savation: Who and What Did Jesus Die For?”

The booklet very concisely and completely proclaims the good news of the gospel of Jesus Christ for all people. It also explains why the false religion of Calvinism has absolutely no support from scripture.

Please find the booklet linked below:

The Alls

We believe that you will find this booklet inspirational and helpful. In addition to the online link above, the booklet will soon be available in hardcopy.

Lordship Salvation and Vacation Bible Schools: Clueless, Careless, or Callous?

By johninnc

Ephesians 4:14: That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;

It is that time of year again when the advertisements for Vacation Bible Schools (VBSs) start showing up on church marquees. Unfortunately, the VBSs are only as good as the churches that sponsor them.

Many of the churches that sponsor VBSs are either unclear, inconsistent, or just plain wrong on the subject of how one receives eternal life. As such, they are completely unsuitable for teaching God’s word to anyone, including our children.

A couple of years ago, we featured an article on summer Bible camps and VBS, which is linked below. We still believe it provides a useful framework for evaluating these programs.

Camp Lordship Salvation: Are Your Kids Safe?

In addition to the Biblically unsound churches that sponsor VBSs are the commercial purveyors of VBS supplies to the churches. I recently came across one such purveyor whose complete list of “frequently asked questions” was as follows:

  • What Bible translation does Group VBS use?
  • Is Group VBS associated with a denomination?
  • What are God Sightings®?
  • Is there a missions component to your VBS programs?
  • How do preschoolers tie into Group VBS?
  • How can I easily manage my VBS?
  • Who do I contact if I have questions or issues?
  • What are the main differences between the programs?
  • Do I have to follow Group’s suggested format?
  • Where can I go to find decorating ideas?
  • How many volunteers do your vbs programs take?

Please note that none of the questions had anything to do with how one receives eternal life. When I drilled down into the first question regarding Bible translation, I was dismayed to find that they use exclusively the NLT (New Living Translation), which contains a lot of error that is central to the gospel message. I also find it astounding that a company would actually purport to trademark “God Sightings”!

I would strongly advise against allowing your children to go to any VBS sponsored by a church that is clueless, careless, or callous.

Clueless means any church that is not absolutely clear regarding the gospel message. That would include any church that teaches salvation by works, either directly or by implication. It would include any church that teaches that water baptism or public confession of Christ are required to receive eternal life. Or, that eternal life can be lost or forfeited. And, it would include any church that insists that “a true Christian will ___.”

Careless may mean that the church is affiliated with a group, such as the Southern Baptist Convention or the Presbyterian Church USA, that distorts the gospel message. It might also mean that the church allows the teaching of books like “The Fan,” that contradict the gospel, or that the church allows false teachers, such as Charles Spurgeon or Billy Graham, to be quoted favorably.

Callous means that the church isn’t really concerned whether or not your child has eternal life. Instead, they may be focused on promoting false social gospels, on ill-conceived missions, or on the performances of  good deeds.

Of course, in order to be able to determine whether a church, or its VBS are sound, you must know the gospel and be well-grounded in it.

If you would like to know where to start click here: The Gospel