Beware Of False Teacher Pastor Joel Osteen

“  ”2nd Peter 2:1, “But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction.

Joel Osteen says many helpful and great things. I always feel encouraged after I listen to him. Pastor Osteen makes me feel like I can do anything! Joel Osteen is a powerful motivational speaker and a gifted orator. The biggest problem with his sermons is WHAT JOEL OSTEEN DOESN'T SAY.

Unfortunately, Pastor Osteen gets the Gospel horrible WRONG. I was listening to him preach the other night (if you can call his motivational speeches preaching). At the end of his sermon, Joel gave a counterfeit plan of salvation that made me cringe. Pastor Osteen requires four things to be saved that are totally unbiblical:

  1. Joel says you must “receive Jesus as Lord” to be saved.
  2. Joel says you must “repent of your sins” to be saved.
  3. Joel says you must “pray” to be saved.
  4. Joel says you must “follow Christ” to be saved.

I heard Joel Osteen on TV the other day require those four unbiblical things to be saved. Joel didn't even mention Jesus' death, burial or resurrection in his suggested sinner's prayer. Dear reader, you don't need to do anything of those things Joel requires.

You can simply BELIEVE on the Lord Jesus Christ to be saved (Acts 16:30-31). You don't have to pray. God is already offering you eternal life as a gift, if you will simply BELIEVE. John 6:47, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life.

Nowhere in the Bible are we taught to “repent of your sin” to be saved. Wicked men added that. Repentance is simply realizing that you are a guilty sinner in need of redemption, a change of mind toward God (Acts 20:21), that is part of BELIEVING on the Lord Jesus Christ to be saved. The man who believes has repented, and the man who repents has believed. They are not two separate acts, but just one. Acts 16:30b-31, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved? And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.” 

Friend, you must choose whether to believe Joel Osteen (who adds at least four additional requirements), or you must believe what the Bible says we must do to be saved. It cannot be both! Something is wrong with Joel Osteen's plan of salvation. It does not agree with God's plan of salvation in the Bible. You only need to receive Jesus as your Savior to be saved, not your Lord. Jesus is Lord, you don't make Him Lord. It is heresy that you must make Jesus your Master, and commit to follow Him, to get to Heaven. If those things were true, then eternal life could not be a free gift, because YOU would have to pay for it.

All of the false Christian cults teach these same heresies that Joel Osteen does concerning how to be saved. All of the cults teach that to be saved you must “repent of your sins.” They teach that you cannot receive God's free gift of eternal life unless you first commit to forsake your lifestyle of sin. This heresy has crept into nearly all Baptist churches today, corrupting the Word of God and perverting the Gospel, casting stumbling blocks before the people. You come as a guilty sinner to the Savior to be saved, you don't need to commit to stop your sinning to be saved. 

It is the conviction of the Holy Spirit that works repentance in a man unto salvation, and not YOU. 2nd Timothy 2:25 speaks of repentance to the acknowledging of the truth, not turning away from your sinning. Repentance is a matter of the truth that you are a guilty sinner. You need to know what you're being saved from. Galatians 3:24-26 teaches this. The LAW of God shows us our sins and brings us to CHRIST to be saved by God's grace. Joel Osteen fails to understand this biblical truth. CHRIST Himself is sufficient Oh sinner to be saved!

Therefore, you don't need to follow Christ as “Lord to be saved. It sounds so good and noble, so religious and reasonable, that a person must make Christ their Lord” (Boss) to get to Heaven. But this teaching goes 100% contrary to the righteousness of God, which is by faith in Jesus Christ (Philippians 3:9). CHRIST is the end of the LAW to him that believes, not our behavior changes, commitment to do better, desire to turn away from sins, religious devotion or willingness to follow Christ. Romans 10:3-4, “For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God. For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.” 

Oh how simple are the Scriptures! Do you see that dear friend. CHRIST Himself is the END of God's Law to all who believe. How beautiful!!! All that is required to be saved is to simply BELIEVE. Do you know what this means? It means that Joel Osteen is not saved. It means that Joel Osteen is woefully ignorant of God's simple plan of salvation. It means that Joel is a damnable false teacher who is leading the masses into Hell. By embellishing the true Gospel with a bunch of garbage theology that is not required, NOR ALLOWED BY GOD, Pastor Osteen has successfully obscured (hidden) the Gospel from the lost (2nd Corinthians 11:3-4). 

Satan's greatest weapon is to con people into living the Christian life without being born again. You can follow Christ as “Lord, Lord” like Joel Osteen teaches, and you'll one day hear Christ's horrifying Words: I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity” (Matthew 7:23b). 

Satan's greatest weapon is to con people into living the Christian life without being born again. You can repent of your sins like Judas did in Matthew 27:3, and as Joel Osteen foolishly teaches, and you'll one day hear Christ's horrifying Words: I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity” (Matthew 7:23b). 

Satan's greatest weapon is to con people into living the Christian life without being born again. You can pray as did an unsaved religious man named Cornelius in Acts 10:2, and as did the unsaved people in Matthew 6:7, and as heretic Joel Osteen teaches, but you'll one day hear Christ's horrifying Words: I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity” (Matthew 7:23b).

Dear reader, the Bible plainly tells us what we must do to be saved in John 6:40, “And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day. The only way to God the Father is through faith in God the Son. 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.” 

In the Gospel of John we are taught to simply BELIEVE on Jesus to be saved. You need to know Who Jesus is, He is the Christ, the Son of God (John 20:31). You need to know what Jesus did for you, He died for your sins on the cross (John 19-20). You need to know why Christ died for you, because we are guilty sinners (John 1:29). Nothing more is required nor allowed to be saved, except to Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house” (Acts 16:31). Pastor Joel Osteen gets it woefully wrong!

Can A Person Be A Catholic And Still Be Saved?

Hebrews 4:10-11, “For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his. Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief.”

Can a person be a Roman Catholics and still be saved? Yes and no. A man recently wrote to me from South America and asked me if his elderly mother can still be saved. He wants to lead her to Christ before she dies, but she refuses to leave the Roman Catholic Church. He emailed me for me advice. He asked a very good question.

Yes, it is possible for a person to be saved and yet still be a member of a false religion, but only if they completely trust Jesus Christ and cease from trusting in the false Gospel of their false religion. In the case of Roman Catholics, they are taught from the cradle to the casket that to get to Heaven a person must keep the Seven Sacraments (baptism, confirmation, Eucharist, penance, anointing of the sick, marriage and holy orders). Catholics are falsely taught that salvation rests in the Catholic Church itself and that water baptism is the door into the Catholic Church. All Catholics trust in water baptism for Heaven. This is a counterfeit plan of salvation which cannot produce the new birth. Satan's greatest weapon is to con people into living the Christian life without ever being born again.

Catholics also are taught that to get to Heaven a person must be confirmed, partake of the holy eucharist, et cetera. So to get saved, a Catholic would need to renounce these things. That is, they would have to stop trusting (repent) of these "dead works" (Hebrews 6:1), by trusting only in Jesus Christ. You don't have to do anything to be saved except come as a sinner and rest wholly in Jesus' name, receiving His sacrifice on the cross as payment for your sins, believing that Christ is risen from the dead (1st Corinthians 15:1-4). A person CANNOT be saved while still holding onto trusting in water baptism, the priest, confirmation, and the confessional booth.

So if a man understands that he is a sinner in God's sight and places his childlike trust (reliance) in Jesus Christ alone, he will go to Heaven. Acts 16:30-31, "And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved? And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house." Salvation is very simple, free and easy. We simply need to rest wholly in the GOOD NEWS (Gospel) of Jesus Christ crucified, buried and risen. Your mother already believes those things, but she is also adding water baptism and the Seven Sacrament. To be saved she must trust Christ alone, and nothing else. Adding anything to Christ is no trust at all. Partial faith in Christ plus keeping the Seven Sacraments is a counterfeit gospel, which cannot produce the new birth.

I agree that a person who gets saved logically wouldn't want to remain in the Catholic religion. But some people don't know anything else because Catholicism has been their hope and home since childhood. So for the sake of family, tradition or fear, a person may not necessarily leave the Catholic church right away, but God WILL save them if they will simply cease from trusting in the Catholic religion and rest only in Christ's sacrifice on the cross as payment for their sins to be saved (Hebrews 4:10-11). The only thing from which a person needs to repent to be saved is from the only thing which prevents them from entering into Heaven, unbelief.

Here is a very helpful and wonderful free online book by Michael P. Bowen explaining the simplicity of the Gospel. The book is called: "I Never Knew You: The Coming Great White Throne Judgment And How You Can Avoid It!"...

http://www.jesus-is-savior.com/BTP/i_never_knew_you.pdf

And here is a very excellent sermon by Pastor Curtis Hutson called: "The One Thing That Determines Salvation"...

http://www.jesusisprecious.org/sermons/printed/curtis_hutson/determines_salvation.htm

We are saved by looking TO Jesus. This is how people were saved in the Old Testament too. Isaiah 45:22, "Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else." I just prayed for your mother that God would help her to understand the Gospel and that she would believe it to be saved. So your mother doesn't have to leave the Catholic religion to be saved, she just needs to stop trusting in it to Get to Heaven, and trust only Jesus instead.

I hope that helps my friend. I share your heavy burden for your mother. She is blessed to have a son who is concerned about her eternal fate. Here is a wonderful video by Pastor Ralph Yankee Arnold that perhaps your mother would watch called: "The Clear Gospel In 4 Minutes"...

https://youtu.be/Wh1VU-_OF98

Getting saved is simple, free and easy. God will save anybody who wholly rests in Jesus' name. No sin or religion can prevent salvation if there is genuine faith in the Savior.

Bible Doesn't Explain Repentance, So Why Should We?

Acts 16:30-31, “And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved? And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.

We've got a BIG problem in many of our churches today with what pastors are teaching about Bible repentance to be saved. I was pondering this important matter today and something dawned on me. Folks, why do so many preachers try to explain what repentance means, when even the Bible doesn't tell us? Think about that. I am guilty of doing it too, so I am preaching to the choir.

In Acts 16:30 the question was asked, Sirs, what must I do to be saved?The simple answer to this na├»ve Roman soldier was, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved...Paul didn't mention repentance! No mention was made of turning away from anything. Oh, why do preachers make getting saved so complicated? Now, we know from the Bible that a person MUST realize that they are a sinner. That is the whole purpose of God's law according to Romans 3:19-20, “Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God. Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.”

I think one of the greatest injustices that pastors do to people is to make a big issue of repentance, which confuses them. I totally disagree with the theological statement: “Repentance is a change of mind that leads to a change of behavior.” Folks, that simply is NOT true! Repentance is “a change of mind, period, end of story! It is true that once saved, the indwelling Holy Spirit will begin to produce fruit in the life of a believer (Galatians 5:22-25), but this fruit MUST NOT be connected with the plan of salvation itself, lest we corrupt the Gospel and cast stumbling blocks before the people.

Pilgrim's Progress author, John Bunyan (1628-1688), wonderfully made this statement:

“If you do not put a difference between justification wrought by the man Christ without and sanctification wrought by the Spirit of Christ within, you are not able to divide the Word aright; but contrariwise, you corrupt the Word of God, and cast stumbling blocks before the people.” —John Bunyan (1628-1688)

I LOVE that statement! I am amazed that John Bunyan had such a keen grasp of the Gospel. But after all, why shouldn't he, the Word of God was the same then as it is today, which is why John Bunyan was refuting them. Moreover, this statement PROVES that many preachers back then were getting the Gospel wrong, just as they are today, which is why John Bunyan was refuting them. I have heard Paul Washer, Ray Comfort and John MacArthur all make lying allegations that the old time preachers all preached repentance from sins to be saved. Well, many did, and they were false teachers! But as the preceding wonderful quote from John Bunyan proves, there were also many preachers back then who taught a free grace Gospel, rejecting the heresy that to be saved you must first be willing to forsake a lifestyle of sinning.

In reality what these false teachers of “repent of your sins to be saved” are saying is that YOU must commit to changing your life, or else you don't meet God's qualifications to be saved. Dear friend, the Bible teaches in 2nd Corinthians 5:17 that if any man “BE IN CHRIST” (i.e., he is already saved), he becomes a new creature. Kindly said, Pacific Garden Mission's UNSHACKLED radio program really gets the Gospel wrong oftentimes. Heresy has invaded most churches today! Nowhere in the inspired King James Bible are we taught to forsake our sinning to be saved. 

I am tired of hearing pastors teach that repentance is a change of mind that leads to a change of behavior. What they are indirectly implying is that if your life hasn't changed you're not saved! Being indwelt with God's Holy Spirit and the manifestation of an outward change of behavior are two different things! Case in point, I know of several believers who are serving time behind bars in prison. They're behavior didn't change! Well you say, if you are saved, there should at least be some evidence of the Holy Spirit. Okay, how much? How much does a person's life need to change before they are considered saved? Do you see how foolish this heresy of having a change of behavior is folks concerning salvation?

The truth is this—if you are saved you SHOULD live for Christ; not WILL because that is Calvinism; not MUST because that is works. What saith the Scripture? Titus 2:11-12, “For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world;If you are saved, YOU SHOULD live for God. When you hear a preacher insisting that true repentance means that your behavior WILL CHANGE, he is preaching another Gospel. 

Listen, anything that an unsaved person can imitate cannot be used as “proof” that someone is saved. Can an unsaved person change? Yes. Can an unsaved person love, do good works and live the Christian life? Yes. So those things cannot be used to “prove” that anyone is saved. The only “proof” that you are saved is the blessed presence of the indwelling Holy Spirit. 1st John 3:24, “And he that keepeth his commandments dwelleth in him, and he in him. And hereby we know that he abideth in us, by the Spirit which he hath given us.” That is something that only YOU can determine, which is what the epistle of 1st John is about (1st John 5:13).

The simple answer given in Acts 16:31 to the question in Acts 16:30 about how to be saved, is simply to BELIEVE ON THE LORD JESUS CHRIST!!! No mention is made about forsaking a sinful life. No requirement is given about the necessity of a change of behavior down the road. It is so easy for preachers to get caught between grace and works. The churches today are full of false teachings on what a person must do to get to Heaven. I adamantly reject any teaching that even mentions a change of behavior with God's simple plan of salvation!!!

Again, the Word of God doesn't make an issue of repentance to be saved, so why should we? Whatever change of mind (repentance) is necessary to be saved is automatically included in believing for the sinner that comes to Christ. The ONLY requirement to receive God's free gift of eternal life is that you admit you are a sinner. No intent to reform is necessary, which would be equivalent to paying a toll to enter into God's Kingdom. Sorrow for sin is penitence, not repentance. To make a mend is penance, not repentance. To turn from sin is reformation, not repentance. All that God requires to be saved is repentance (a change of mind), which compels a man to believe the Good News of Jesus Christ crucified, buried and risen (1st Corinthians 15:1-4). Repentance facilitates believing. Repentance and faith are inseparable, two parts of one action of believing the Gospel to be saved. The man who believes has repented, and the man who repents has believed.

I reject the idea that it is even possible to believe without repenting. Some preachers claim that if a person professes faith in Christ, but are still living in immorality, that they never repented of their sins and are not saved. That is another gospel. The truth is that it is possible to follow Christ, live the Christian life, join a Christian organization, or adopt a Christian culture, and still be lost. We see this evidenced in Matthew 7:21-23. They did many wonderful works in Jesus' name. They preached in Jesus' name. They even called Jesus “Lord, but Christ denied knowing them, calling them workers of iniquity. The Lord tells us the reason why in Matthew 7:21, because they failed to do the Father's will. John 6:40 teaches that the Father's will is to BELIEVE ON CHRIST!!!

Dear friend, you can follow Jesus, serve Jesus, love Jesus and talk about Jesus all you want, but you will never be born-again until you cease from your own works and wholly TRUST JESUS. John 6:47, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life.So when we witness to people, we should simply make sure that they understand they are a guilty sinner in God's sight, under the condemnation of God's law. We should explain that there is a penalty for sin, which is eternity in the fires of Hell. Never withhold the reality of Hell from people when you witness to them. But we must be VERY careful to never give the wrong impression that their behavior must change to be saved. 

I love what Pastor Harry Ironside (1876-1951) said:

“In all that I have written I have failed completely to express what was surging up in my soul if I have given anyone the impression that I think of repentance as something meritorious which must be produced in man by self-effort ere he is fit to come to God for salvation.” —Dr. Harry Ironside, a quote from chapter 16, THE PREACHING THAT PRODUCES REPENTANCE, from his timeless classic book, EXCEPT YE REPENT.
I agree 100%! The entire concept of Lordship Salvation is based in self-righteousness. The concept of wrong repentance is rooted in self-righteousness. Never, ever, accept the teaching that repentance means anything more than a simple change of mind. That may not settle right with you dear friend, but it is God's Word. The Lord in His infinite wisdom intentionally chose metanoia (a Greek noun that means “a change of mind”). If God wanted to use a different word that included a change of behavior, then He would have chose a different word. Think about that! Why do so many preachers ADD meaning to the word metanoia?

I did an internet search to see if I could find out why preachers add extra meaning to repentance as “a change of mind.” The hardcore Lordship salvation website GotQuestions.org came up first. This is the heresy that they teach:

When a repentant person changes his mind about sin, that change of mind naturally leads to a turning from sin. Sin is no longer desirable or fun, because sin brings condemnation. The repentant sinner begins to abhor his past misdeeds. And he begins to seek ways to amend his behavior (see Luke 19:8). So, ultimately, the result of the change of mind about sin is good deeds. The sinner turns away from sin toward faith in the Savior, and that faith is shown in action (see James 2:17).
SOURCE: https://www.gotquestions.org/repentance-change-mind-turn-sin.html

That is an ASSUMPTION! They are perverting the Bible meaning of repentance based upon their own flawed human understanding and not Scripture. Nowhere in the Bible are we taught that repentance (a change of mind) naturally leads to a turning from sin!!! This is human reformation and not the work of the Holy Spirit. In true salvation the sinner has zero power to turn away from their sins. It is the power of Christ in the life of a born-again believer that enables us to turn away from sin (Galatians 2:20). In other words, God saves us and the Holy Spirit changes us. This is the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-25). 

The horrible preceding quote from GotQuestions.org attributes all of the changes in a believer's life to SELF, and not the Holy Spirit. According to their flawed reasoning, all of the changes in a believer's life has its origin in repentance; but the Bible teaches that a believer is transformed by the renewing of our mind (Romans 12:1-2). John 17:17 teaches that the believer is sanctified by the Word of God, the truth. I completely reject the heretical idea that the change of mind which is necessary to believe the Gospel, somehow perpetuates into a change of behavior, so that if someone's behavior hasn't change they aren't really saved. 

Friend, if you don't have the Holy Spirit you're not saved. That is the truth! Romans 8:9, “But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.I hope you see the big difference between the manmade changes that false teachers require, versus the changes which the Holy Spirit produces in the believer. No pastor should ever teach people that repentance is anything more than a simple change of mind. For to do so is to corrupt the Word of God. No mention of changing one's behavior ought ever be mentioned with repentance. God doesn't, so why should we? Where the Bible is silent we should be silent. 

I love what Mario Cuomo, the governor of New York said: “Everyone has a right to their own opinion, but nobody has a right to their own facts.” Yes Sir! The FACT of the matter is that repentance in the Bible concerning salvation is simply “a change of mind.”

God Wants To Give You A Gift Of Eternal Life, He Doesn't Demand That You Give Up Your Sinning To Receive It

Romans 4:1-5, “What shall we say then that Abraham our father, as pertaining to the flesh, hath found? For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God. For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness. Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt. But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.

Our text passage makes it very clear that salvation is by faith alone, without works. I am so frustrated with pastors today who continually focus on repentance more than faith to be saved. The Gospel of John doesn't mention the word “repent” even once. This is because repentance is automatically included with believing. The word “believe” is mentioned 85 times in John. 

Dear friend, God wants to give to you a free gift of eternal life. Ephesians 2:8-9, “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of GodNot of works, lest any man should boast.” God does not demand that you give up your sins, make a mend, promise to do better, improving your life, surrender all to Jesus, turn over a new leaf, be willing to turn away from your sins, nor anything else to receive His free gift.

I heard a pastor recently teach that believing on Jesus is not enough to be saved. He simply meant that a person must also realize their sinnership, and I fully agree with that. You cannot merely turn over a new leaf from sin. to clean up your life to be saved. You need Jesus Christ! Contrariwise, you cannot merely trust Christ and fail to realize that you are a guilty sinner. Every person must answer the SIN QUESTION and the SON QUESTION. 

  1. Do you know that you're a guilty sinner? 
  2. Do you know that Jesus died on the cross to pay for your sins, was buried and raised up three days later, and that only though faith in Him can you be saved?

That is the simple Gospel. Nothing more is required. So when you hear wayward preachers perverting the Gospel, requiring tuning away from sins in addition to believing, you know that they don't know what they're talking about. Repentance must never be taught as being a separate action from believing. Therefore, it is impossible that someone could ever believe and yet not have repented. It is utterly impossible! You may follow Christ, but not believe. You may join a Christian organization, but not believe. You may live the Christian life, but not believe. But you cannot believe and yet still be lost!

The churches are filled with heresy today.

Anybody Who Makes Repentance A Separate Act From Believing Has Perverted God's Grace

1st Thessalonians 4:14, “For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.”

In several dozen Bible passages we are simply taught that salvation is by faith alone in the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. Our inspired text verse from 1st Thessalonians 4:14 makes this abundantly clear, “For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.” Also, please consider Galatians 3:26, “For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.” Please consider Acts 10:43, “To him give all the prophets witness, that through his name whosoever believeth in him shall receive remission of sins.” Please consider John 6:47, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life.” That is so simple.

Yet, we hear in umpteen corrupt churches today that BELIEVING on Jesus as our Savior is not enough to be saved. In addition, many preachers foolishly teach that you must have an additional act of repentance, which they say is more than a mere change of mind; but rather, they say that a change of mind must lead to a change of behavior. This is a counterfeit plan of salvation which cannot produce the new birth by the Holy Spirit of God. I love how Pilgrim's Progress author, John Bunyan (1628-1688), explains it:
“If you do not put a difference between justification wrought by the man Christ without and sanctification wrought by the Spirit of Christ within, you are not able to divide the Word aright; but contrariwise, you corrupt the Word of God, and cast stumbling blocks before the people.” [emphasis added] —Evangelist John Bunyan
Amen! That was well written. Anybody who adds repentance as a separate act from BELIEVING on the Lord Jesus Christ to be saved is preaching another gospel (Galatians 1:6-9). What saith the Scripture? Acts 16:30b-31, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved? And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.” Again, the inspired King James Bible simply teaches to BELIEVE! How in the world then, do so many preachers in churches today come up with the additional requirement to turn away from sinful behavior as a necessary step to salvation? They have been woefully deceived by Satan!

A changed life is the “fruit” of the indwelling Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:22-25), which every born-again believer possesses (1st Corinthians 3:16-17; Romans 8:9; 1st John 3:24). The Holy Spirit sanctifies every believer with the Word of God, which is THE TRUTH (John 17:17; 1st Peter 2:2). To change one's own behavior is reformation, not repentance. Sorrow over sins is penitence, not repentance. Making a mend for sin is penance, not repentance. Yet, so many corrupt pastors today confuse and add these things to repentance, demanding that people be sorry and commit to behavior modification in order to go to Heaven. That is not the Gospel of free grace, not even close! 
The true Gospel always points you to Christ; a false gospel always points to you. Anybody who teaches that believing on Jesus is not enough to get to Heaven, claiming that you must also repent (that will lead to turning away from your sinful bad habits) is a theological liar! In effect, such a horrible preacher is requiring that you first make a toll payment in order to enter into God's Kingdom.

In the true Gospel, you do need to repent, but repentance is simply a change of mind toward God (Acts 20:21) that causes you to BELIEVE the Gospel. Repentance and faith are not the same thing, but they both happen at the same time, and are one act, not two separate acts. False prophet Ray Comfort teaches that repentance is a separate act from believing...
“So if the plane goes down, you'd end up in Hell! There are two things you have to do to be saved. Do you remember what they are? I told you what they are—You've got to repent and trust the Savior! ... God's offering you everlasting life upon your repentance and faith in Christ. Who in his right mind wouldn't say, 'Whoa! That's a good offer!' (The curious woman asks what it means to “repent”?)... Have you ever said you're sorry to someone you did something wrong to? That's all repentance is—You've sinned against God; it's a matter of saying, 'God, I'm sorry,' and then LIVING A LIFESTYLE that proves the reality of your repentance. That's what repentance is, it's a continual thing! God, 'I'm sorry, but I'm not going going to lie or steal or blaspheme Your name ever again. It has that attitude! And the second thing—trust in Jesus!” [emphasis added]

SOURCE: Evangelist Ray Comfort, “I've never killed anyone” (MP3 clip from video).
Dear friend, believing on Jesus is NOT the “second thing” that you must do to be saved, it is the only thing!!! What saith the Scripture? Acts 16:30b-31, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved? And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.” Does the Bible say that you must first prove your sincerity by giving up your sinning, and then SECONDLY believe on Christ? No, it certainly does not. The Bible simply teaches to BELIEVE on Jesus! So why does Ray Comfort teach this madness? You tell me.

To be saved, you do need to know that you are a guilty sinner (Romans 3:19-23), so that you will see your need for the blessed Savior Galatians 3:24-26). But this is all that repentance is. Let me give you a helpful illustration of repentance and faith. I recently moved from Guam to Florida in July of 2021. Now, when I got on the airplane to leave Guam, I didn't have to make a second decision to head toward Florida. I was moving toward Florida at the same time I was moving away from Guam. That is how repentance and faith work. You don't repent first, and then believe second.

I am tired of hearing unlearned and injurious preachers corrupt the simplicity of the Gospel, by teaching that someone who is trusting in Christ isn't really saved if they haven't forsaken their sinful behavior, alleging that they have never repented. That is another gospel. Anything required more than faith is a counterfeit plan of salvation. Faith is the only righteous thing I can do. Our part in salvation is simply to get out of the way, by ceasing from our own dead works (good and bad works alike) and RESTING wholly on the precious name of the Lord Jesus Christ (Hebrews 4:9-11).


“Faith is the only righteous thing that I can do!” —Pastor Jack Hyles, a quote from the MP3 sermon titled: “God's Reversal Of Psalm 51

1st Corinthians 16:24, “My love be with you all in Christ Jesus. Amen.”

Didn't Dr. John R. Rice Teach That You Must Turn Away From Sin To Be Saved?

Romans 4:4-7, “Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt. But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness. Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth righteousness without works, Saying, Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered.”

Didn't Evangelist John R. Rice (1895-1980) teach that you must “repent from sin with all your heart to be saved? Yes he did! Yet, Dr. Rice clearly didn't believe that a person must attempt to reduce their amount of sinning to be saved, as evidenced by this wonderful quote from him:
There are those hyper-dispensationalists who think that John the Baptist preached a different Gospel from Christ when he commanded repentance (Matt. 3:2). But it is the same repentance Jesus commanded in Matthew 4:17, in Luke 13:3 and 5, and the same repentance that Paul preached in Athens that God “now commandeth all men every where to repent” (Acts 17:30 31). Repentance is not a different plan of salvation from having faith: it is part of the same plan of salvation. Or rather repentance is simply another way of describing or looking at the plan of salvation. One who turns from sin to God has done so by trusting in Jesus Christ. A change of mind toward sin is necessarily involved in saving faith. [emphasis added]

SOURCE: Evangelist John R. Rice, “Acts: Filled With The Spirit,” pp. 251-252; Sword Of The Lord, Murfreesboro, Tennessee; ©1963
Clearly, John R. Rice believed that the way you “turn from sin” is by trusting Jesus Christ as your Savior. This is one step, not two, to be saved. That is NOT what the Lordship Salvation crowd are heretically preaching today. I keep hearing these false preachers teaching that you must turn away from your sins first, and then secondly believe the Gospel. That is a false gospel of partial faith in Christ plus works! You don't repent AND believe, as Dr. Tom Ferrell, Pastor Marty Herron and Bob Jones University preach; you repent TO believe as Dr. John R. Rice rightly taught. There is a fine line between faith and foolishness!

Having said that, I do not like nor approve of Brother Rice's poor choice of words. No preacher should ever add to the Scripture, to say something that God didn't say. Nowhere in the inspired King James Bible are we taught to repent “OF YOUR SIN” to receive God's free gift of eternal life. Proponents of this damnable heresy are often quick to falsely accuse the free grace crowd (e.g., myself, Dr. Jack Hyles, Dr. Curtis Hutson and Pastor Ralph Yankee Arnold) of leaving off repentance. No, we have not left off repentance, nor have we added something to the Bible which God did not say. To repent simply means “to think differently.” 

I love how Pastor Bob Gray Sr. explains it:
“Repentance means to change your mind—change your mind—change your mind about how you want to get to Heaven to what God says you've got to do to get to Heaven. If you've got to repent of all your sins, you're still headed for Hell tonight.” —Pastor Bob Gray Sr., a quote from the awesome MP3 sermon, Why You Should Be A Part Of A Growing Church
Christian author Michael Patrick Bowen accurately states in his excellent book titled: “I NEVER KNEW YOU”:
“Repent, as Christ meant it to be in terms of salvation, means to change your mind from trusting in what you can do for God to trusting only in what He can do for you.” —Michael Patrick Bowen, a quote from the awesome book, “I NEVER NEW YOU” (Page 114)
The faithful soulwinning man of God, Dr. Harry Ironside (1876-1951), rightly states:
"Repentance is the recognition of my sinnership—the owning before God that I am as vile as He has declared me to be in His holy Word." —Dr. Harry Ironside, Except Ye Repent, chapter 3
I agree with all those explanations of repentance. Acts 20:21 speaks of “repentance toward God,” not from anything. Some foolish pastors coddle and bid Godspeed to false teachers, by alleging that in order to turn TO something you have to also turn FROM something. I agree! But when you require turning FROM something as a separate act of turning TO Christ to be saved, you have corrupted the Gospel. It is easy to see how words can be manipulated to teach a perverse plan of salvation (Galatians 1:6-9). The man who turns TO Christ has at the same time turned FROM all that had previously hindered him from coming to the light of the truth of the Gospel to be saved. Nothing more is required to get to Heaven than to simply BELIEVE the Good News of Jesus Christ. This is what Dr. John R. Rice rightly believed and taught.

In 2014, I heard Pastor Marty Herron at Harvest Baptist Church on Guam errantly teach hundreds of people on a Sunday morning, and I quote: “It is not enough to admit that you are a sinner to be saved, you must also turn away from a lifestyle of sinning.” I knew right there and then that Pastor Herron is an infidel, not a born-again Christian, a false prophet! Herron has added works to grace, perverting the Gospel. Where did he get that garbage theology? Look no further than his mentors: Dr. Steve Pettit and Pastor John MacArthur. I am not trying to be unkind or mean, I am contending for the faith once delivered unto the saints (Jude 1:3). I can preach the truth all day long, month after month, year after year, but people don't seem to take notice and “get it,” until I start to mention the names of heretics and step on some toes. Let God be true, but every man a liar (Romans 3:4). The greatest sin of our generation is complacency, indifference and tolerance of false teachers by professed Christians. Right doctrine matters! It matters which Bible that we use. Words matter to God. God cares and so should we as His redeemed children!

So, even though I disagree with Dr. John R. Rice's poor choice of wording, he vindicates himself by plainly explaining what he means by “turn from sin with all your heart” to be saved. Dr. Rice plainly taught that the man who BELIEVES on Christ has turned from his sins. This is not what the Bob Jones crowd are preaching today! Dr. Rice rightly recognized repentance and faith as being two sides of the same coin. He didn't see them as separate actions, and that is critically important to understand, lest you corrupt the Word of God and cast stumbling blocks before the people. 

If a man must commit to forsake his lifestyle of sinning as a requirement to be saved, then a payment has been demanded of him. This is a false plan of salvation. In God's true plan of redemption, a man ceases from ALL his works (good and bad alike, which the Bible calls “dead works” in Hebrews 6:1). One of my favorite Bible passages is Hebrews 4:10-11, For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his. Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief.” If you want to go to Heaven, you simply need to CEASE from trusting in all your works (good and bad works alike) and REST in Jesus Christ. Look at this frightening theological garbage that Evangelist Ray Comfort wickedly preaches!

Dear reader, eternal life is the free gift of God (Romans 6:23; Ephesians 2:8-9). You don't earn or merit that gift. You don't turn away from your sin to qualify for that gift. It is a gift! You don't have to live a lifestyle of repentance as Steve Pettit and Ray Comfort preach to prove the validity of your faith. You don't have to be willing to turn away from sin to get that gift. You simply take it by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ (Acts 16:30-31). You simply need to acknowledge the truth that you are a guilty sinner in God's sight (2nd Timothy 2:25; Romans 3:19-20), so you'll see your need to believe the Gospel (the Good News of Jesus Christ crucified, buried and risen) to be saved (1st Corinthians 15:1-4). 

Our part in salvation is simply to BELIEVE the Good News of Jesus Christ, God does the rest. That is the simplicity that is in Christ (2nd Corinthians 11:3-4). Whatever changes that God wants to see take place in one's life as His child is His department, and you can be assured that He will not be an absent Father (Hebrews 12:6-8). Although I respectfully disagree with some of his wording, Dr. John R. Rice was a faithful man of God and I still fully support his ongoing ministry today at the Sword Of The Lord.

The Epistle Of 1st John

1st John 1:3-8, “That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ. And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full. This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth: But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin. If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.

The Epistle of 1st John is often misunderstood. It is very important to recognize that the Apostle John is the writer of both books. In the Gospel of John we are told by John how to have eternal life. John 20:31, “But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name.Here we plainly see that God gave us the Gospel of John, to convince us that Jesus is the Christ, the only begotten (biological) Son of God, so that we might believe and be saved.

But regarding the Epistle of John we read this in 1st John 1:4, And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full.Here we plainly see that John's purpose is not to show us how to have eternal life, but how to have the fullness of joy as believers. John makes it very clear that he is addressing his epistle to believers. 1st 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.” Here we see clearly that the Epistle of 1st John is written to BELIEVERS, not unbelievers.

This truth is very important to know, in order to understand these books of the Bible. The Gospel of John was written to everyone, to show us the way of salvation by convincing humanity that Jesus is the Christ, the only begotten Son of God (John 20:31); but the book of 1st John was written exclusively to believers, that our joy may be full (1st John 1:4). In 1st John 5:13, the apostle John says that he is writer to believers, that we may “know we have eternal life. This is so that our joy may be full. John is familiarizing believers with the work of the indwelling Holy Spirit in the life of every child of God. 1st John 3:24, “ And he that keepeth his commandments dwelleth in him, and he in him. And hereby we know that he abideth in us, by the Spirit which he hath given us.”

Pastor Jack Hyles (1926-2001) authored a wonderful book, which is one of my favorites, all about the Holy Spirit. This is one of the greatest and most helpful books I have ever read. The book is titled: “Meet The Holy Spirit.” The great joy of my life as God's child is enjoying the constant abiding comfort of the indwelling Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is God in me. John 14:23, “Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.God the Father and God the Son live inside every born-again believer as God the Holy Spirit (1st Corinthians 3:16-17; Romans 8:9). I love the Holy Spirit!!!

So when John teaches that whosoever committeth sin is of the Devil (1st John 3:8), he is not saying that backslidden Christians aren't saved. Proverbs 14:14a says that “the backslider in heart shall be filled with his own ways. We're all guilty of that! I sure am. You are too you wretched sinner! 1st John 1:8, “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.We're all lousy Christians! 

One of the keys to having full joy as a believer is to continually acknowledge that we are sinful, and cannot live the Christian life in our own strength. Galatians 2:20, “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.Jesus lives the Christian life through us, as we yield to the Holy Spirit in humble submission to the inspired Word of God. 2nd Corinthians 10:5-6, Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ; And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled.That is not mind control, that is walking in the blessed Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:25).

I love that last verse in Galatians 2:21, “I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain.” Please don't miss that! This whole heretical idea in many churches today, called Lordship Salvation, is foreign to the Scriptures. The Apostle Paul also said in Galatians 3:3,  “Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?” Paul is effectively saying, “You got saved by faith, so why are you trying to validate your salvation by works?” Our faith is justified in the eyes of MEN by works (James 2:18), but with GOD we are justified by faith alone (Romans 4:5). 

Kindly said, anyone (e.g., Dr. Steve Pettit and the Bob Jones crowd today) who teaches that works prove the genuineness of the reality of your faith in God's sight, is preaching ANOTHER GOSPEL (2nd Corinthians 11:3-4). Works cannot be used to prove the validity of your faith to God. The very idea is absurd according to Romans 4:3-4, “For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness. Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt.The evidence of your faith is faith itself! Faith is the only righteous thing I can do!!! Jesus confirmed this truth in John 6:28-29, “Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God? Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.”

It bothers me a lot when I hear Calvinistic preachers (like Pastor Charles Lawson of the Temple Baptist Church in Knoxville, Tennessee) teach that a believer must turn away from sin (i.e., do works) if they are really saved. That is unscriptural. The Bible teaches the exactly opposite. Romans 5:20 says that when we sin as believers, GRACE DOTH MUCH MORE ABOUND! Acts 13:39 teaches that the believer is JUSTIFIED FROM ALL THINGS!!! I'm not the one perverting the Gospel of free grace, the wrong repentance crowd are!

We read in 1st John 3:9 that one who is born of God cannot sin. The Apostle Paul put it this way in Galatians 5:16, “This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.When we choose to sin, it is only because we are walking in the flesh, instead of the Holy Spirit that lives within our body and soul. A believer who chooses to walk in the flesh cannot experience full joy. What saith the Scripture? Romans 8:6, “For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.” That is what John is saying in his epistle. If we are to have God's fullness of joy, we need to walk in the Spirit.

God gave us the wonderful book of 1st John so that our joy may be full as believers. A child of God who chooses to walk in the flesh won't have God's full joy. A believer who harbors hatred against other brothers and sisters in the Lord won't have God's full joy. Ah, but when our walk aligns with our talk, and we have sweet fellowship with the Lord, then we will have full joy. So please don't make the mistake of using the Epistle of 1st John as a plan of salvation. God gave us the Gospel of John to show us how to get to Heaven. God gave us the Epistle of 1st John that our joy as believers may be full.

Not All Israel Is Israel, And Not All Baptists Are Baptists

Romans 9:6-8, “Not as though the word of God hath taken none effect. For they are not all Israel, which are of Israel Neither, because they are the seed of Abraham, are they all children: but, In Isaac shall thy seed be called. That is, They which are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God: but the children of the promise are counted for the seed.”

The Devil is a beautiful liar! The Scriptures teach us in 2nd Corinthians 11:13-15 that Satan masquerades himself as an angel of light, and so does his false ministers of unrighteousness. To the natural (or unregenerate mind), human rational tells us that God won't forgive anyone unless they make a conscious effort to turn away from their sinful ways.

However, that is not what the inspired King James Bible teaches. If you do some research, as I diligently have, you'll find that every pseudo-Christian religion (i.e., false Christian religion) requires their followers to repent of their sins to get to Heaven. Nowhere in the King James Bible are we taught to repent “OF YOUR SINS” to be saved. Wicked men added those extra words, corrupting God's Word to mean something different than what God intended.

Repentance is a change of mind, period. According to 2nd Timothy 2:25 repentance is “the acknowledging of the truth;” Repentance is simply the admission that you are a guilty sinner so that you'll see your need to believe the Gospel and be saved. Anyone who tells you to “turn away from your sinful ways” or “repent of your sins” to get to Heaven is a liar. I have been thrown out of churches, shunned, hated, ostracized and counted as their “enemy” for preaching this Bible truth (Galatians 4:16). God will reward me for my faithful “stand” (Ephesians 6:13). I thank God for Pastor Jack Hyles (1926-2001), who also exposed Misunderstood Repentance.

The Bible says that not all Israel is Israel. That simply means that even though God chose the nation of Israel as His own, not all Jews are God's children. Romans 2:28-29, “For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh: But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God.” Only born-again Christians are God's children!!! We are the chosen!

I am so sickened and disgusted by the horrible perversions of the Gospel that I keep hearing being taught today. Pacific Garden Mission in Chicago has done much good over the past century, but they are also sending souls to Hell by obscuring the truth of the Gospel. Some UNSHACKLED episodes are good, but others are horrifying in corrupt theology! Friend, right doctrine matters! Galatians 1:6-7 proclaims that there is only ONE GOSPEL. We have at least TWO very different plans of salvation circulating in churches today. I fully agree with Pastor Curtis Hutson on the Gospel

Now take a look at the ungodly perverse garbage that Dr. Steve Pettit (president of Bob Jones University since 2014) is preaching. These are two very different plans of salvation. In fact, they are not even compatible with each other! One is instantaneous and requires mere childlike faith (the Gospel), but the other requires a life of religious devotion to persevere in faithful Christian living until one's death. The former is grace, the latter is works!

Dr. Bob Jones Sr. (1883-1968) himself warned in 1945, about infidels that would someday creep into the college and steal the faith of the saints, and said that we'd pay them to do it! Dr. Jones was warning everyone about infidels like Steve Pettit, Marty Herron, John MacArthur and other reprobates of the faith who pervert the Gospel. There are not two Gospels, there is ONLY ONE (Galatians 1:6-7; 1st Corinthians 15:1-4). The Bible speaks of “the simplicity that is in Christ,” which is the Gospel (2nd Corinthians 11:3-4). 

When Jesus was asked what “works” we must do to get to Heaven, here is His answer in John 6:28-29, “Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God? Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.” There is the simplicity of salvation... BELIEVE! Anyone who believes on the Lord Jesus Christ, receiving His sacrifice on the cross as payment for your sins, believing that He is risen from the dead, is saved. 1st Thessalonians 4:14, “For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.”

Not all Baptists are Baptists! Any Baptist church that preaches Lordship Salvation, or Misunderstood Repentance, is a religious CULT, not a New Testament church.

The Gift Of Eternal Life Is Wrapped In The Wonderful Package Of Jesus

Romans 5:18, “Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gi...