My eldest daughter, 31, tells me that I cannot be telling them or anyone they are doing wrong because I'm not to judge. I do know I am to warn and how can a loving, caring parent not want to warn the off-spring of the dangerous lives I see them living?
I believe this book could be an answer to my prayers. Thank you. (PA)
[Independent Baptist teachers, if they be David Cloud or anyone else, are SEVERELY flawed when it comes to salvation security. Stay away from them all!]
[Comment: I wrote this dear sister back to try to encourage and comfort her, which, in part, included the following very important points: The truth is, when we confront people regarding sexual immorality or drunkenness being such that will send anyone to the lake of fire, we are merely quoting what the REAL grace teacher, the Apostle Paul, taught the Corinthians in 1 Cor. 6:9,10. See also Rev. 21:8; Gal. 5:19-21; and Eph. 5:5-7. Please know that a judgment on our part is not necessary, since their sinful behavior is apparent and the Word of God is clear. Furthermore, Jesus commanded us to make a right judgment in John 7:24 which is what we are doing by quoting 1 Cor. 6:9,10! Also remember the spiritual man makes judgments about all things (1 Cor. 2:15).
The Scriptures about judging come from Matt. 7:1,2: "Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you." These verses are saying that people will make an assessment or opinion about us on the basis of our judgment of things! For example, to "judge" abortion as MURDER is viewed by some as narrow-minded bigotry in our modern age, but for someone who knows the facts, such a person is judged as being correct.
This loving mother believes our book could be an answer to her prayers. Too bad so many bookstore owners and managers won't allow it to be part of their inventory, for it might help many just like this concerned parent. Her four oldest children are only four of multitudes that have been spiritually hurt by the venomous teaching of eternal security. Truly, this teaching needs to be openly refuted as never before. Please pray for her four children to repent before it's too late.]
*... I received your booklet, The Gospel According to Charles Stanley. Of course I read it right away. I feel that this little booklet is a commendable composition of what Charles Stanley really teaches concerning his false doctrine of "once saved always saved." So, let me be on record to say that Christians face a horrendous danger in following false teachers like Stanley. Scriptures such as 2 Peter and Jude warn us of apostasy and false teachers. Paul in Galatians, Colossians, Thessalonians, Timothy and Titus strongly warns us against these false teachers. We are severely warned in Hebrews. Even our Lord gave us strong warning in all the Gospels against such teachers. Nevertheless, most Christians are blind and the Gospel is veiled by these false teachers because they fail to stay in the Word. The irony of this is that Paul warns us in 2 Timothy that this will happen. "Because the time will come when people will not listen to the true teaching but will find many more teachers who please them by saying the things they want to hear. They will stop listening to the truth and will begin to follow false stories" (2 Tim.4:3,4 NCV). I truly believe that the doctrine of UES [unconditional eternal security] is a very serious and dangerous matter for those who refuse to repent because it is causing many of our brothers and sisters to be perishing. We must continue to stand up and refute this great heresy. See what Paul tells us: "We have renounced disgraceful, underhanded ways; we refuse to practice cunning or to tamper with God's word, but by the open statement of the truth we would commend ourselves to everyman's conscience in the sight of God. And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled only to those who are perishing" (2 Cor. 4:2,3).
Jude tells us (vv.3,4 paraphrasing) that he diligently wanted to write about ordinary salvation but changed his mind because of a greater need to encourage us to fight hard for the faith, on account of these false teachers have secretly crept in unaware to change the grace of God. Jude goes on to tell us that these false teachers are ordained to judgment, they are ungodly and licentious. In verse 8, Jude goes on tocall them filthy dreamers who despise dominion (authority, God's Word).
Thank the Lord for people like you, Dan and Cheryl, who continue to fight hard for the faith. Someone has to stand up and refute the false doctrine of unconditional eternal security and I say, "count me in!"... I love you guys and may you continue to walk with the Lord.
* I am writing to request a copy of your book refuting eternal security .... I am very curious as to why you continually label it a "Calvinist doctrine." No Calvinist writer that I have ever read has taught such a false doctrine as espoused by Charles Stanley and others. The Calvinist doctrine of the Perseverance of the Saints bears no resemblence [sic] at all to Eternal Security, as the enclosed book by a Calvinist will show. Anyway, I am looking forward to receiving your book. Salvation is of the Lord. (CO)
[Response: ... I was very glad to learn that you are in agreement with me that Stanley's gospel is indeed false doctrine. May I encourage you to enlighten the people with whom you are acquainted of this fact so that they will not be deceived. Stanley's ministry is world-wide and the damage done by it is incalculable. His version of the believer's security, unfortunately, is the predominant one. He defines it as: "... eternal security is that work of God in which he guarantees that the gift of salvation once received is possessed forever and cannot be lost." This is to be understood to mean one can, after his salvation, become a murderer, a drunkard, a doctrinal heretic and/or any other detestable thing and still be a Christian who will, without question, enter heaven after his death. Millions in our country believe it. This is a lie from hell, a doctrine of demons and a license for immorality. Until the day I die, I will fight this teaching that is damning millions.
You asked in your letter why I label eternal security a "Calvinistic doctrine" and you state that the Perseverance of the Saints bears no resemblance at all to eternal security. In my book you will notice that I state there are two versions of eternal security -- moderate and extreme. Your version would be the moderate one, while Stanley's the extreme. Though you may believe there isn't much similarity, there really is. Let me prove this to you. John MacArthur, Jr. believes as you do. He steadfastly stands against Stanley's version of the believer's security as is apparent in his radio broadcasts and books. Yet in the 1980's MacArthur taught a man that if one is ever saved he could murder, not repent of that murder and still go to heaven. This would be under the issue of a Christian committing suicide. You read of this in the booklet, The Gospel According To Charles Stanley. Furthermore, MacArthur and you would agree that David was certainly saved before he committed adultery and murder. David did not repent for at least nine months after his adultery! Your position would never declare that he "was never really saved to begin with"! In other words, David was an unrepentant murderer and adulterer yet saved because once a person is truly saved, he is always saved! So, just like Charles Stanley, your position declares that an adulterer and/or murderer is saved, if he ever was saved! This is clearly contradicted by God Himself in Rev. 21:8! Please note when God, who knows all there is to know about grace, said this, it was after the plan of redemption was completed. How could anything be more clear? Notice that the unbelieving will not be the only ones going to the lake of fire, according to this verse! This, too, is in contradiction to Calvinism. Recently, you ran an article of Spurgeon's defense of Calvinism. Spurgeon believed the only sin that would send a person to hell was unbelief, but God declares something altogether different. While the unbelievers will certainly end up in the lake of fire, the unrepentant adulterers and murderers will be there with them, according to God! The position I embrace and defend is, we are saved by grace apart from our own works. We must trust in Jesus Christ and in Him alone for our soul's salvation. However, after one experiences salvation, that gift of salvation can be nullified by after-conversion behavior and/or heretical doctrinal beliefs. This is more clearly laid out in my book.
I assume that you take a similar position as we do here against Roman Catholicism, that is, that Catholicism is a counterfeit Christian system. My question to you is, have you ever pondered what Calvinism does to a Catholic who truly gets saved and stays in the Catholic church? Because of the rampant idolatry in this system and the false gospel pouring forth through it, such a true Christian will never endure to enter the kingdom (Rev. 21:8; 1 Jn. 2:24,25). Therefore, Calvinism is indirectly deadly to such a person, because one needs to leave such an idolatrous religious system. It is a matter of spiritual life or death -- not optional -- to remain saved, since no idolater will enter the kingdom. God bless you. Keep yourself from idols (1 Jn. 5:21).]
* Greetings in the most holy name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ .... The tract inwhich it was described about Heaven and Hell is very much useful in this country as there are 97.2% of the people never heard about Christ and about the heaven and hell. When I received this wonderful tract, I just jumped and I began praising the King Jesus Christ for this wonderful gift that God sent to me from your office .... There is very [little] literature available about the unpopular subject of HELL. But, in your tract, you have taken me in depth and I [am] really blessed to know some of the hidden truths through this wonderful tract .... I praise the Lord and I will continuously praise Him for the wonderful knowledge that God has granted to you and to your people to make this literature available to open the spiritual eyes of many CHRISTIANS .... Thank you so much for loving me and sending this material to me. I cannot wait until I share these tracts with my pastor friends in ... and in other towns and villages.
With these two tracts, I wanted to reach my Nation for Christ and I want to gain souls and I want to help the other so called Christian people to get open their spiritual eyes for Christ and to escape from the coming storm .... I want to use your material in my ministry. But, we need them in TELUGU language. The people of India speak more than 60 languages and very few people speak ENGLISH .... if you permit me, I wanted to get these tracts in to TELUGU language and I want to print these tracts locally for 50,000 copies or so. But, I need your permission and your help .... Many Christians they are serving the Lord but they really do not know the truth. Hence, I want to help them with the hidden truths with the help of your literature ....I request you to kindly come to India some day in the future to reach the lost with the message of God.... My desire is to send more evangelists to the tribal villages where the gospel seed was never planted before. So, I need your help and prayers. It is my desire to have some working relationship with you to serve our Lord with much more better ways ....(India). See our on-line Heaven/Hell tract.
[See Bible Questions with regard to the next letter]
* Greetings. I read your book The Believer's Security: Conditional or Unconditional and chapter 8 had a section with 113 questions regarding eternal security. I would like to respond to some of the questions and would appreciate any comments you may have. Question #100 seems to me to miss the point entirely. David's sins of adultery and murder did not negate his salvation but did result in him not only being confronted and exposed but also experiencing severe chastisement during the rest of his earthly life. In Psalm 51, David asked God to restore to him the joy of his salvation, not salvation itself. Question #101 I would answer YES but please be aware some say UES is in effect only during the Dispensation of Grace (also known as the Church Age) and in any event UES will be discontinued at the catching away of the Church and during the Seventieth Week of Daniel, UES will not be in effect. Question #102 I would say NO but on the contrary, the fact that David repented and came clean when confronted by Nathan plus the fact that he was experiencing chastisement is proof that he really was saved. God only chastises those who are His (see Heb. 12). Question #103, all but Judas were saved. Question #104 -- YES. Question #105 -- NO, Judas was a "devil," see Jn. 6:70. It could also be said that Judas was a "tare" or a "wolf in sheep's clothing." Question: Are tares a picture of someone who was ever saved? Question #106 -- YES.
[Response: Thank you for your letter. Let me comment on your comments! To say that David did NOT lose his salvation with his sins of adultery and murder is to rebut Scripture (1 Cor. 6:9,10; Rev. 21:8; etc)! Your interpretation of Psa. 51:12 is a clear contradiction of these passages! Just because David prayed in Psa. 51 to have the joy of his salvation "restored" doesn't mean he didn't previously lose his salvation, which according to the aforementioned verses, clearly states that he did! By the way, even if David did not lose his salvation from these sins, this still would not prove the perseverance of the saints (or eternal security) for there might be a more grievous sin which could be committed. Also, did you notice that David believed the Holy Spirit could be taken from him (Psalm 51:11). This is what happened to King Saul (1 Sam. 16:14). Apparently, from this alone, he felt something far greater than just the joy of his salvation was jeopardized!
You mentioned that UES [unconditional eternal security] is in effect only during the dispensation of grace (or church age), but failed to produce even a single Scripture to prove this! I flatly disagree with you. There has NEVER been any kind of unconditional security for God's creation. It never existed for the angels, who were already in Heaven or Adam and Eve or for the people in the Old Testament or for us now. If you write back give me Scripture to prove your statement.
Many UES proponents would say if a person who professes to "know" God would afterwards commit adultery and/or murder, this would prove he was never really saved to begin with! David's example clearly disproves this. Again, I see you reading into Scripture what you want to see. To say his chastisement is proof that he really was saved doesn't prove this conclusion. The prodigal son was chastised before, during and after he died spiritually because of sexual immorality. He clearly got saved again according to Lk. 15:24,32.
Who was Judas Iscariot, based on scripture? Regarding Judas, he was a "devil" at the point of John 6:70, but a "disciple" at the point of Matt. 10:1,2. In fact, he was the same kind of disciple as the rest of the Twelve! Furthermore, he was CALLED and CHOSEN to be an "Apostle" too. Please know that the office of apostle is the highest office in the church! Therefore, your doctrine teaches that a person who held the highest office in the church, called and chosen by the Lord Himself was never saved! Ludicrous. Remember, a child of God can become an enemy of God (James 4:4). This is what happened to Judas. See pages 32-35 in my book.
"Tares" do exist, no doubt! However, a person who is a disciple of Christ's can't be identified as a tare! Furthermore, you make an exception of Judas being saved and identified as a disciple. Why? What Scripture teaches one can be a disciple of the Lord's and yet be unsaved? Show me a Scripture!
God bless you. Remember: KEEP YOURSELF FROM IDOLS (1 John 5:21).]
* I have never believed in the eternal security doctrine that is being taught today .... I think it is one of the most dangerous doctrines on earth .... I am a Vietnam vet and believe me when I say that I lived life to the fullest and was a firm believer in the saying "If it feels good, do it," but when Jesus came in, all that other stuff (sin) had to go .... I cannot understand how people can say they are saved and still do the things they used to do. I couldn't, nor wanted to .... I do believe you are wasting your time trying to explain your position to eternal security believers .... their desire and lust for the things of this world has hardened their hearts to the truth. They really do believe that they can have it both ways -- righteousness and sin. I give this example. I have a friend at work who is a 100% believer in Charles Stanley's teaching .... he also loaned me a copy of Stanley's book, which I read and after reading it, am totally convinced that he is wrong .... As I stated earlier, I think this doctrine is extremely dangerous. This friend of mine is married, one son, another child on the way and a girlfriend on the side that he sees several times a week. He smokes, drinks and curses. He is also one of the largest drug users and dealers in our area. This guy is always telling me that he is ready to go. Ready to meet the Lord. He even tries to witness to other people whenever he doesn't have a drug deal or a party or a girlfriend to go to. I have seen first-hand the damage that this person is doing and it sickens me .... All of this because of the eternal security doctrine .... It doesn't matter what I say or what Scriptures I give him. He thinks he's OK .... These people love the world too much to listen to reason. (VA)
* About four months ago I began to ask God to give me a desire to fear the Lord (this was Nehemiah's prayer in the first chapter of his book). I soon began to be really concerned about my spiritual condition. Though I believed a Christian could lose his salvation, I felt that it would be only if someone left Him and went into such a life of sin that he eventually apostatized. I know now (after reading numerous articles in your site) that I have been grossly deceived. I believed the lie that a carnal Christian was one who did any type of sin. I accepted Christ 25 years ago but have borne no fruit in my life. I have had times of wonderful intimacy with God but for the most part I have lived for myself. I have lived with different sins all of my life. I believe that if I died today, I would go to Hell. I know now that God is answering my prayer concerning the "fear of the Lord." I am really scared!!! How do I know that I am not one of those who were once enlightened and tasted the good things of God and His Word and that now it is impossible to renew me again unto repentance? After all, Esau sought to repentance with tears and He could not find it! Can a person come to this place where even though he now sees what he could not see before, that it is too late for him to repent seeing that he has trampled underfoot the blood of Jesus and His sacrifice for us? Please help me understand!!! I am truly afraid for my eternal destiny and for that of my family and friends. WHEN is it too late to repent? What if you feel nothing? I feel a sense of hopelessness and despair! Oh God have mercy on my soul!!! HELP!!! (via the Internet)
[Response: ...Sorry I'm so slow in getting back to you. There are MANY distractions plus my full-time secular job. (I used to be in full-time Christian service as a pastor, but now I'm not.) You referred to Heb. 6:4-6 in passing. You seem concerned about this passage and your present condition. GOOD NEWS! Anytime we seek the correct interpretation of any passage from Scripture we must consider all other verses on the same topic and find harmony. If we examine that Hebrews passage in light of the Apostle Peter's life and then compare all that to you and your situation there can be NO DOUBT that you can come back to the Lord! Let me remind you that BEFORE Peter disowned the Lord three times, he was made an "apostle" (Mt. 10:1,2), walked on water with Jesus, heard demons cry out that Jesus is the Son of God, saw Jesus raise people from the dead, heard the voice of the heavenly Father at the Mt. of Transfiguration, etc. Beyond this he was enlightened for three years by "a wiser than Solomon" as Jesus taught perfect messages and was a perfect example at all times! Yet, Peter flatly disowned Christ three times, repented and came back! God accepted him back. The Book of Acts clearly shows he was mightily used afterwards in the early church.
Another example, though not as good is the Prodigal. He was in the presence of the Father for a time. Afterwards, he deliberately walked away to live a life of blatant sin with prostitutes, etc. (perhaps for many years), then he repented and came back to the Father! Again, the Father accepted him. Ponder Lk. 15:24,32.
... Don't let the devil plague your mind with disturbing thoughts! GO TO THE LORD SINCERELY AND REPENTFULLY AND HE WILL ACCEPT YOU.]