Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Omissions From the Gospel, Important to Consider

I'm taking a short break from my series assessing independent Baptists, but this is still related to part four.  I wish more interest would spread about the subject of that part in the series.

Men are justified by faith in Jesus Christ.  Men must believe in Jesus Christ to be saved.  This is different than merely receiving Him as Savior.  A lot of people are interested in being saved.  A lot of people agree that Jesus is the way of salvation.  A lot of people then are glad to ask Jesus to save them and receive Him as their Savior.  Does that mean they're saved?  I wouldn't be convinced that they are.  They could be, but it is troubling in its absence of more important and necessary truth about Jesus.

I've taught through all four gospels very slowly at least once now and I'm working through them again.  I've taught the life of Christ as a class several times.  Jesus will save.  He's the Savior, but the thrust of His saving message wasn't about Him as Savior, but Him as King, as Lord, as God, as the Son of God, as the promised Messiah.

When you read through John, you recognize that John is mainly a series of signs that Jesus is the Messiah, so people would believe in Him.  They are saved, not by believing He will save.  Sure, you have to believe He will save, or why believe in Him?  But you are really believing in  and receiving Him as Who He is. He's God, He's Lord, He's Savior.  You are not receiving Him if you detach those things from Him.  You believe that He is the King promised in the Old Testament, the one who fulfills the Davidic covenant.

The biggest reason why people won't believe in Jesus isn't because they don't want to be saved. Most people want to be saved, once they recognize they need to be saved.  What they don't like is having someone else in charge of their lives, so they don't like believing in Jesus, which is the only way how they can be saved.  You don't know who Jesus is if you don't understand that believing in Him means you're ceding control of yourself over to Him.  If you really do believe in Him, you believe He is King, which means He is in charge of you.  If you believe that, then you want that.  You will leave that part out either because you aren't saved, you are ignorant, you are an evil pragmatist, or all three of those.

Not doing what Jesus (God) wants is sin.  Salvation is saving you from sin.  He doesn't save you to continue not doing what He wants.  That's not being saved from sin.  It's not as though you can reject that part or even not agree with it, and be saved, only to acquiesce to what He wants sometime down the road.  No, you're giving in right away.

I recognize that churches in their "evangelism" or salvation plan mostly don't include what I'm writing above.  They include the Savior part and then hope that they'll persuade the candidate to obey at a later date.  In their system, someone can remain a rebel and still be saved.

Man became lost because He didn't do what God said.  That was sin.  He doesn't go from lost to saved without a recognition that he was wrong to be doing what He wanted instead of what God wanted and the acknowledgement and acquiescence that now He would be doing what God wanted.  Before he was saved, he was doing what he wanted, but believing in Jesus (God) is believing that Jesus is in charge now.  If someone doesn't think that Jesus is in charge, He doesn't believe in Him.

Everything I'm saying here is very simple.  One might even call it easy.  If it's so easy, why is this left out in people's preaching to the lost?  The reason is because this is the issue that people have with the gospel.  If it's left out, then they'll pray or make a profession or "get saved."  These folks want people to get saved, so they leave it out.  The problem is that by leaving it out, then it isn't the gospel anymore.  It isn't believing in Jesus.

If you believe what I'm writing here, then you know you've got to stand against those who don't believe this way.  There aren't two options on salvation.  "They're just not as clear as I'd like them to be" is just a cop out.  When you fellowship with them, you are contributing to their false gospel, to their negligence, to their horrific blinding of men to the truth.  You can't and you shouldn't be neutral.

Let me give you a 'for instance.' There are people on the FBFI board who believe what I'm writing and there are people on that board who do not believe it.  I'm not writing about the FBFI in particular because "I have it out" for the FBFI in some unique way.  I don't.  It just doesn't make any sense. Sure, there are other examples of coalitions besides them, who do the same.  Can they really stay in fellowship when they differ on this?  What is the basis for staying in cooperation and association? Is this nothing more than semantics?


Jim Peet said...

Thanks Kent. Good article. We used on S/I here

Michael S. Alford said...

Kent, this sounds a lot like 'Lordship salvation' , the extreme form of which teaches (as I'm sure you're aware) that any sin in the believers life is proof that they haven't given Jesus dominion in that area and probably aren't saved. What woudl you say is the difference between that position and the one you've taken here?

Kent Brandenburg said...

Hi Michael,

What is actual so-called "lordship salvation" and the straw man version, which you are describing, are vastly different. I reject the strawman, but it still leaves the true view, which is the gospel, the historic gospel. The strawman is a deliberate attack by pragmatists, to put it bluntly. Why not just interact with what's biblically wrong with what I'm saying rather than try to pidgeon-hole it into the strawman?

The strawman is that you've got to give up every sin in your life to be saved. I haven't read anyone who believes that, so it is arguing a strawman. That is works salvation. I would show the difference between that and actual lordship salvation, or should we just say "salvation," because it is what Jesus and the Apostles taught, but I've already given it in this blog post and many others here through the years. The men with whom I fellowship all believe what I'm writing here. If they don't, I would like to know, because it is a deal breaker for me.

Greg, if you're reading here, you would be forced to be in fellowship with someone who believes different on this in all independent Baptist coalitions, and scripture says not to do that. You can't be in the coalition and obey the Bible. That is my main problem with the coalitions. There are others, but this is the biggest to me.

Bill Hardecker said...

I'll take "conversion" (true, genuine, Scriptural) any day over mere profession. And that is what we should be looking for when dealing with people. Thank you, Pastor B.

Michael S. Alford said...

Sorry Kent, I was trying to construct a straw man, I was legitimately curious, but I perhaps haven't adequately explained what I mean by the 'extreme Lordship salvation position'. It's a moot point.
This I do know. When I got saved back in 1995, God began to immediately convict me of things I had no idea were wrong, and give me the victory over those things. This wasn't an overnight process and I suspect that some people watching might have thought that the process wasn't moving to their satisfaction and that I, by their estimation, was lost.

d4v34x said...

Good news, Michael. Most people who believe in biblical "Lordship Salvation", also believe in a progressive sanctification which sounds very like what you describe.

Be well.

Hemia Smeding said...

A preacher who does not preach the Lordship of Jesus Christ might as well use a Bible version that does not uphold His Lordship.

The Preacher said...

"The strawman is that you've got to give up every sin in your life to be saved. I haven't read anyone who believes that, so it is arguing a strawman. That is works salvation."

That is well said. A new creature in Jesus Christ that is converted shows forth some evidence that his sins that have been confessed and then forgiven are begin worked out AFTER salvation. The process or progress of sanctification is of the heart, followed by visible action, as the word of God is being believed and practiced.

That is just loving the Lord Jesus Christ, by the Holy Ghost through the scriptures for all that he has done. We are at best unprofitable servants, yet friends and sons of God. We are also children of the King, and therefore we have in the church those who are given as "tutors and governors" to help us grow in the word of God.

If that desire to some degree is not present, then he knows not the gospel of the grace of God, but is in danger of becoming a "two-fold child of hell".

Anonymous said...

From John Mark IB,

Dear Pastor Brandenburg,

Thanks, that is what I believe as well and what people need to be hearing today, sadly in my area the church I used to attend was IFB revivalist, and Hutson, Sheldon Smith, sword of the Lord fellowship, Hyles methodology, and used the easy 4 step sinners prayer and voila! You're saved by that action or counted as salvation by that alone! Also there's not one other true church in the area these guys at least went out every week albeit only two hours on Saturday door to door soul winning but with the sinners prayer method, The Pastor would question me "what does repentance mean to you?" and basically considered my beliefs Lordship and he hated David Cloud as well, I never told him I was more of a Kent Brandenburg follower than Cloud though, or he would've hated you as much for the Lordship stance as well! Years ago back in late 80's I thought I was saved from "the one two three repeat after or pray after me sinners prayer" to this day I'm still not sure if I was truly or not? Thanks for your help and stance on being Biblical like Ross and Strouse! My 3 favorites may you be blessed with health long years of service love joy and peace always in Jesus name amen GOD bless you and yours

Anonymous said...

John Mark IB,

Dear Pastor Brandenburg,

Hope you're doing well,
Also please forgive my stupidity and error in my lapse of discernment, in one of my previous posts to your blog, on the issue of John McArthur and the error of his belief that one can receive the mark of the beast and still be saved, the first several lines of the site were ok but upon further review the people and site itself were not Biblically & doctrinally sound, and were just plain weird, for which I apologize for, even though they were correct in exposing an error themselves, thanks for allowing my participation on your site and I will try to be better in my discernment in the future if allowed to, may the LORD bless you and yours with health love joy and peace always in Jesus name amen have a blessed day and weekend

Kent Brandenburg said...

Thanks for the comments here to which I did not answer or comment. If you were supportive, thank you, and I appreciate those supporting comments. Thanks John Mark and others.

Someone asked about the Gospel Proclaimed, to which I've been referring, and it is here:

John Mark IB said...

Dear Pastor Brandenburg,

Hope you and yours are doing great, forgive me for being on the lower end of the knowledge scale on these deeper theological issues, etc., but in regards to the conference on the Gospel Proclaimed, I noticed it is by a gentleman named Mike Sproul, from what I've read and seen here's some other things you may already have known,
Dr. Strouse has written several articles on this type of thinking? and while we may not agree with everything that Dr. D A Waite does, he does have some interesting points on VPP and KJB etc., so I'll just leave you with these 3 here and let it alone as I'm probably not qualified to be in the mix on the serious discussions with you guys, just from my slower perspective is all, thanks for allowing my posts and having me as a guest on your excellent site!! may GOD bless you and yours with many years of fruitful service and health, love joy and peace, always in Jesus name amen!! have a blessed day and week! hope I don't dig myself into a big bad trouble hole here but here's the 3, 2 are from Dr. Strouse, and 1 in 1991, before he changed to his current Bible Baptist Cromwell CT or
these first 2 are from Dr. Strouse

the third is from a Dr. Jeffrey Khoo

Dean, Far Eastern Bible College and Seminary in Singapore

not sure if they exactly cover the issues regarding his M.Sproul's views on the issues but I believe they're close?? take care!!

Kent Brandenburg said...

John Mark,

Sorry I haven't gotten to your comments. I see them, think I'm going to answer, plan on getting back, then forget. Yes, Gospel Proclaimed, is hosted by the church in AZ, where Mike Sproul pastors, the same one who wrote God's Word Preserved, which attempts to prove that God didn't preserve His Word. I don't know what that book adds to the critical text side, the no-preservation side. There are better books if you want to read their side, but it does give a horrible critique of our book -- when I say horrible, I mean the review was a hatchet job. He included little slanderous statements about me personally. How does and why does anyone put something like that in a book? And one that is supposed to be doctrinal? It tells you where they are in this.

John Mark IB said...

Dear Pastor Brandenburg,

Hope you're doing well, Wow you're 100 % right, I remember you posted before on your blog about this same person and the nastiness from the same, I'll have to type his name into your search bar to reread it, I have 2 of your books the Sounding Brass, and TSKT which I love even though I can't keep up with you guys on the language side of it haha but it's pretty sad and indicative of the way they act incredibly anti preservationists etc., so they attack the persons like yourselves who stand for the right way GOD'S Way! sad sire lovers use this tactic like immature children who know they're wrong, I am thankful for you guys and your godly stance for the truth! I also am listening to your awesome teaching on the 1 Kings 11 from your site
love it on my cell phone. Thanks for letting me access to the free teachings I learn so much from your wealth if knowledge, maybe one day I can afford to pay you and Dr. 's Ross and Strouse haha thanks for teaching me I'm sticking with you guys! May The LORD bless you with many many more years of fruitful ministry and health love joy and peace always in Jesus name amen! Have a blessed day and weekend. from your personal cheering section and slower guy in the room haha thanks again :)

John Mark IB said...

Dear Pastor Brandenburg,

Sorry for my continued stupid typos, and here I meant to say "sad *sore *losers" use this tactic like immature children".....
not the erroneous "sad *sire *lovers", gosh that's just plain crazy, haha, sorry again, I'm being very bad about my lack of proof reading before hitting send, sorry, you must be thinking not only am I slow but crazy as well, haha :)
in regards to the above mentioned person, it is a sad shame that folks claim to be believers, but then just plain don't really believe the basics? or simple stuff? that is promised right in The Word itself? I never could understand folks like the tony campolos and Shelby spongs etc., why even bother being a so called believer if you deny the very Gospel?? and His Word? it's like you might as well just say ok I'm no different than the atheists are for that matter?
I don't get it, yeah and writing a book on supposed preservation? but denying the very preservation by attacking people who actually do believe it? is just plain nuts in mho!! haha oh well, thanks for you kind consideration of my constant babbling here, I'm just slow not crazy haha!

hope you're doing great and as always May The LORD bless you with many, many,more years, of fruitful service to us all, and with health love, joy and peace Shalom! always in Jesus name amen, have a blessed day and weekend,

hope your water situation is improving, we are so blessed to have water in abundance right now I think we take it for granted that some don't!! I have some distant relatives out in the Chula Vista area a ways south of you.

John Mark IB said...

Dear Pastor Brandenburg,

Hope you're doing great, I found some sites from my search on your site search bar regarding Mike Sproul, my question to you is i found this site you recommended from here

and was wondering if you could clarify your comments were you being funny? or no? or do you agree with Pastor Gleason on all these as well? I believe you're just playing based on your comment but wanted to be sure that all Pastor Gleason's teachings are in line with what you and Dr. Ross etc., believe,
I'm pretty sure you agree with most of his teaching just curious on what you think? Thanks I noticed some remarks from him and others about not being KJV only etc., thanks for your time and help, very much appreciate your patience and understanding and blog posts too!
May The LORD bless you with many, many more years of fruitful service to us all, with health love joy and peace always in Jesus name amen! Have a blessed day and weekend.

Kent Brandenburg said...


Pastor Gleason is KJV. He believes the Words were preserved in the original languages. I'm not sure how we would differ. He may have told me at one point, but I don't remember.

Jon Gleason said...

Hello, Kent. Sorry I've not participated here for a long time. We haven't fallen out, I'm not mad at you :). I'm just busy, and the Internet hasn't been high on my priority list.

But I popped in yesterday, and there is my name! Now I feel important, but real life will no doubt disabuse me of that silly idea soon.

Anyway, I thought I should answer John Mark's question, and I've put it on my own blog in a full article, because others besides your readers may want to know. I trust you won't mind me giving the link here.

In short, I use the KJV because I believe it comes from a superior text which reflects God's divine preservation of His Word. I also believe it is a superior translation. But I do not believe, as some do, that it is the only translation God can use or, indeed, the only good way the originals could be translated. I believe there are several errors that have grown up that are associated with the KJVO label and with which I do not wish to be associated. Thus, I avoid the label.

I recognise that there are those who use the KJVO label but who do not teach those errors. I am not particularly concerned about the label, but about the errors. I would not permit the errors to be taught in our church, whatever label a person had, and if a person does not teach those errors, I am not particularly concerned if he uses the label. It is the doctrine that matters, not the label.

That puts it in short, but on my own blog I rambled on quite a bit longer, as you might have expected. :) Hope you have had a blessed Lord's day, and that your service for Him has been faithful and joyful.