John MacArthur's Damnable Lordship Salvation

Matthew 7:18-23, A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them. Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity. In each of the three editions of Dr. John MacArthur’s 'The Gospel According to Jesus,' there is a single page that summarizes the 'Lordship Salvation' interpretation of the Gospel.”

In Pastor John MacArthur's heretical book titled: 'The Gospel According To Jesus," he blasphemes the Word of God. In the 20th Anniversary edition, Dr. MacArthur states on page 250:
“One of the most comprehensive invitations to salvation in all the epistles comes in James 4:7-10... The invitation in 4:7-10 is directed at those who are not saved...”

The following is the passage which Dr. MacArthur is referring to, as an “invitation to salvation”...

“Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded. Be afflicted, and mourn, and weep: let your laughter be turned to mourning, and your joy to heaviness. Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up,” (James 4:7-10).
Huh? Are you kidding me? Remember, MacArthur said this passage is aimed at “those who are not saved.” Is the epistle of James, “directed at those who are not saved?” No, absolutely not! The epistle begins with these words: “James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad, greeting. My brethren, count it all joy…” (James 1:1-2). “Brethren” appears approximately 190 times in the New Testament, and when it does appear it is used almost exclusively in reference to born again Christians,

Dear reader, Pastor MacArthur views the carnality that James addresses, as though it proves these “brethren” were never saved at all. That is theological incompetence. Mr. MacArthur views them as, and I quote from his book: “sinners… unregenerate… in desperate need of God’s (saving) grace.” MacArthur’s wrong answer to the problem is that they need to be born again. He goes on to explain what he believes are the ten “imperatives” for the reception of eternal life. You couldn't make this stuff up friends. Truth is stranger than fiction!

In the Epistle of Romans the Apostle Paul is teaching about justification (salvation from without by Christ the man) by faith alone (Romans 4:4-7). In the Epistle of James the Apostles James is teaching about sanctification (salvation from within by the Spirit of Christ).
“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)
The saving message to “sinners,” the “unregenerate,” according to MacArthur is:
“...submit yourself to God (salvation); resist the devil (transferring allegiance); draw near to God (intimacy of relationship); cleanse your hands (repentance); purify your hearts (confession); be miserable, mourn, weep and let your laughter and joy be turned to gloom (sorrow). The final imperative summarizes the mentality of those who are converted: ‘Humble yourselves in the presence of the Lord’.”
Kindly said, Dr. John MacArthur is woefully ignorant of the Scriptures. He is foolishly using the Epistle of James as a plan of salvation, which is heresy. MacArthur says that these are necessary conditions in James of saving faith, that results in a lost man becoming a Christian. Oh how wrong he is! The preceding heretical quote from Dr. MacArthur, from his horrible book: 'The Gospel According to Jesus,' is the Lordship Salvationist's classic error of failing to distinguish between the doctrines of salvation and discipleship. I love the following precious quote from Free Grace preacher, and Pilgrim's Progress author, John Bunyan (1628-1688):
“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
Lordship Salvation frontloads faith with a commitment to do the “good works” that should only be expected of a mature born again Christian. Ephesians 2:8-9 teaches that we are saved by grace through faith alone; and then Verse 10 says we were saved UNTO good works. The good works must not be required to be saved, nor even as evidence of being saved. Unsaved people can also perform good works, as we see is the case in Matthew 7:21-23. Jesus denied knowing them, even though they did "many wonderful works" in Jesus' name, preached in Jesus' name, and followed Him as their "Lord." You don't get saved by serving or following Jesus, you get saved by trusting Him. You don't have to be good to get into Heaven dear friend, you've got to be 100% perfect in every way. Obviously no one is perfect. That is why we need a Savior. Thank God that He loved us enough to send His only begotten Son, Jesus, into the world to die on a lonely sinner's cross to pay our debt of sin (2nd Corinthians 5:21).

Do we find salvation by the grace of God through faith in Christ anywhere in James 4:7-10? No, we do not, because James is addressing saved “brethren,” some of whom behaved as “carnal” Christians. Their faith was dead, but it was faith nonetheless.
Galatians 2:21, “I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain,”

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