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Entertainment and Style of Music Do Not Convert People

John MacArthur,

“It’s not the style of our music that gets people converted. It’s not because of the entertainment level that they enjoy that gets them converted. Sooner or later you’ve got to get down to confronting them with the message and my judgment is sooner is better than later. So what are we waiting for? Let’s just get them to hear the message, that’s how they’re going to be saved. Take out the preaching of sin, take out the preaching of hell, take out repentance, take out the cross, and then people will feel comfortable. That’s the new trend. Build an image of love, care, being nice and if everybody is nice, they like us, they might like Jesus. That is tragically not the case. Continue reading

Does God So Love the World?

John MacArthur – Grace to You

Love is the best known but least understood of all God’s attributes. Almost everyone who believes in God these days sees Him as a God of love. I have even met agnostics who are quite certain that if God exists, He must be benevolent, compassionate, and loving.

All those things are infinitely true about God, of course, but not in the way most people think. Because of the influence of modern liberal theology, many suppose that God’s love and goodness ultimately nullify His righteousness, justice, and holy wrath. They envision God as a benign heavenly grandfather-tolerant, affable, lenient, permissive, devoid of any real displeasure over sin, who without consideration of His holiness will benignly pass over sin and accept people as they are. Continue reading

The Truth War: Fighting for Certainty in an Age of Deception

There is a vast number of “Discernment” ministries out there and this is wonderful, but we must guard not to fall into a trap of un Biblical discernment. I was there once myself and have fallen hard believe me. Be discerning when you visit a “Discernment” blog/website. There are few Biblical ones out there. To speak the truth in love should be foremost the  most outstanding character when warning others of false teachings.

Eph 4:15 Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, – Gills Commentary  explains it so clearly. ~  Continue reading

Bewitched

Acts 20:29-30 I know that after my departure fierce wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock; (30) and from among your own selves will arise men speaking twisted things, to draw away the disciples after them.

John MacArthur - Grace to You

Galatians 3:1-5

 

Our study tonight takes us to the third chapter of the book of Galatians in our continuing look at this most exciting and helpful book. We will be considering verses 1-5. Galatians 3:1-5.

Defection is an ugly word. So is the word deserter. Certainly, there is nothing more bewildering, and few things more sorrowing, than to see a Christian who defects, or deserts, the purity of the Christian faith by which he has been born again and by which he has been nurtured, to settle for something less. But strange as it may seem, many Christians do. We find that they begin well. They receive the grace of Christ extended in salvation; they live in humble faith, but soon they fall into systems of legalism, systems of ritual, systems of works. I wonder how many Christians, for example, have come to a knowledge of Jesus Christ in a very personal way and have then fallen into a very liturgical church pattern, where they merely go through formalities and functions that have only external symbolism and no internal significance. I wonder how many people begin well, but then begin to substitute things like confirmation and communion and baptism and the Mass and any other kind of particular church rite for the realities of the Christian faith.

This is an issue that comes to full force in the book of Galatians, because this is the issue that confronts the heart of the Apostle Paul. He had been used as the mouthpiece of God to introduce the Galatians to the truth of the Gospel. He was the one who preached the gospel of grace; he was the one who exposed them to the magnificence of the Christian experience (which was by faith plus nothing) in the perfect and finished work of Jesus Christ. But since that time when he had begun with them, they had defected. They had deserted the simple purity of a grace gospel and substituted a form of religion, inferior and impotent.

This is not to say they had lost their salvation. It is to say, rather, that they substituted for the fullness of their life in Christ a form of religion that had no power and no joy. Furthermore, the unsaved world would get it’s doctrine of salvation from their lives and if they live legalistic lives, the world then is to conclude that salvation comes by legalism and nothing could be further from the truth. Continue reading

Traditions of Men

Bible Q&A with John MacArthur from Grace to You 

See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deception, according to the tradition of men, according to the elementary principles of the world, rather than according to Christ.  (Colossians 2: 2:8a)

Paul is concerned that those who have been transferred from Satan’s domain to Christ’s kingdom not become enslaved again. He voiced a similar concern in Galatians 5:1: “It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery.” He calls the Colossians to constant watchfulness because danger is near, as the present tense imperative form of blepo (see to it) indicates. The church constantly faces the danger of false teachers. Jesus says in Matthew 7:15, “Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves.” In Matthew 16:6 he warns, “Watch out and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees.”

The apostles also warned the church against false teachers. Paul cautioned the Ephesian elders that “after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock; and from among your own selves men will arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after them. Therefore be on the alert” (Acts 20:29–31). To the Philippians he wrote, “Beware of the dogs, beware of the evil workers, beware of the false circumcision” (Phil. 3:2). Peter also warns of the danger of false teachers. He writes in 2 Peter 3:1, “You therefore, beloved, knowing this beforehand, be on your guard lest, being carried away by the error of unprincipled men, you fall from your own steadfastness.” Continue reading

Does God So Love the World?

John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.

John MacArthur – Grace to You

Love is the best known but least understood of all God’s attributes. Almost everyone who believes in God these days sees Him as a God of love. I have even met agnostics who are quite certain that if God exists, He must be benevolent, compassionate, and loving.

All those things are infinitely true about God, of course, but not in the way most people think. Because of the influence of modern liberal theology, many suppose that God’s love and goodness ultimately nullify His righteousness, justice, and holy wrath. They envision God as a benign heavenly grandfather-tolerant, affable, lenient, permissive, devoid of any real displeasure over sin, who without consideration of His holiness will benignly pass over sin and accept people as they are.

Liberal thinking about God’s love also permeates much of evangelicalism today. We have lost the reality of God’s wrath. We have disregarded His hatred for sin. The God most evangelicals now describe is all-loving and not at all angry. We have forgotten that “It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God” (Hebrews 10:31)We do not believe in that kind of God anymore. Continue reading

Bad Company Corrupts Good Character

 

John MacArthur – Grace to You

Do not be deceived: “Bad company corrupts good morals.” Become sober–minded as you ought, and stop sinning; for some have no knowledge of God. I speak this to your shame. (1 Corinthians15:33–34)

Paul warned the Corinthians that they should not be deceived about the danger of bad companyHomilia(company) basically means an association of people, but also can have the connotation of a lecture or sermon. It seems possible, therefore, that the Corinthians were both listening to some wrong teaching and associating with some evil people. Whether the teaching was in formal messages or not, it was bad and corrupting.

People who think wrongly invariably behave wrongly. Wrong behavior comes from wrong thinking, from wrong beliefs and wrong standards. It is impossible to associate regularly with wicked people without being contaminated both by their ideas and by their habits. The context implies that the bad company was teaching the heretical theology that there is no resurrection of the dead, and that bad theology had corrupted good morals. Continue reading

Of Dogs and Swine

John MacArthur

_Do not give what is holy to dogs, and do not throw your pearls before swine, or they will trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you to pieces._ – Matthew 7:6

It is clear from this verse that Jesus doesn’t exclude every kind of judgment—here He commands a specific type. But to obey His command, you need to know who the dogs and swine represent.

In biblical times dogs were largely half-wild mongrels that acted as scavengers. They were dirty, greedy, snarling, and often vicious and diseased. No responsible Jew would ever throw to a dog a piece of holy meat that had been consecrated as a sacrifice in the temple. Since no man was allowed to eat this meat, how much less should it have been thrown to wild, filthy dogs.

Swine were considered by the Jews to be the epitome of uncleanness. Like the scavenging dogs, those swine were greedy, vicious, and filthy. Continue reading

Discerning Leadership

By John MacArthur

The language of warfare is sprinkled throughout the apostle Paul’s writing, especially where it relates to leadership. He urged Timothy to “fight the good fight of faith” (1 Timothy 6:12). And he commanded believers to take up the armor of God (1 Thessalonians 5:8) and prepare for battle. His life was a spiritual war as he combatted false teaching and religious error.

But Paul knew the real battle was not ultimately against human false teachers. It was nothing less than full-scale war against the kingdom of darkness. “We do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places” (Ephesians 6:12).

All believers are engaged in that same battle. We are fighting for the preservation and proclamation of the truth. We are fighting for the honor of Jesus Christ. We are fighting for the salvation of sinners, and we are fighting for the virtue of saints. Continue reading

New Apostolic Nuttiness.

Listen, read or watch the complete sermon below. Continue reading

Can Believers Understand the Bible on Their Own?

Bible Q&A with John MacArthur from Grace to You

But know this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture is a matter of one’s own interpretation, for no prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God. (1:20–21)

False prophets spoke of their own things, from their own ideas, but no true message from God ever arose from a human interpretation. Interpretation (epiluseōs) is an unfortunate translation because in English it indicates how one understands Scripture, whereas the Greek noun is a genitive, indicating source. Thus Peter is not referring to the explanation of the Scripture, but to its origin. The next statement in verse 21, for no prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but (alla, “just the opposite,” “quite the contrary”) men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God, further Continue reading

John MacArthur on Spiritual Formation, the Holy Spirit, Rock Star Pastors and Christian Discernment Ministries

Posted by Christine Pack

Dr. John MacArthur, pastor of Grace Community Church, president of The Masters College, and author of numerous theological books (including The Gospel According to JesusThe Truth War, and Slave), recently did an interview with Erin Benziger of Christian Research Network. In just a short ten minutes, Benziger and MacArthur covered a lot of ground. Here are a few snippets of Dr. MacArthur’s thoughts on various topics:

Dr. John MacArthur,
Grace Community Church

 Spiritual Formation:  “It’s very dangerous, the spiritual formation. It’s a pagan approach. It’s more like Hinduism than Christianity.”

 The Holy Spirit:  “(W)hen God the Father’s honor is under attack, everybody rises to defend Him…….. When Christ is attacked as to His deity or as to the nature of the cross, we get a movement like Confessing Evangelicals, we get documents responding to ECT [Evangelicals and Catholics Together] on the Gospel. We get T4G, The Gospel Coalition. We get everybody mounting a massive effort to protect the integtrity of the Gospel, Christ, the cross and His vicarious substitutionary atonement. But the Holy Spirit is just being slaughtered everywhere and where is the outrage?”

 Rock Star Pastors:  “(Rock Star pastors) don’t want to ask anything of anybody. Just superficial, name Jesus and rock and roll with us and you’re going to Heaven.”

 Christian Discernment Ministries:  “The Apostle Paul named names all through the New Testament: good, bad and indifferent. There are times when the Church has to be warned when something is dangerous, that’s part of spiritual responsibility…… I think there are times to name names. I have a rule about that and that is, I will respond to anyone who has published something, but nothing that is private. And that’s fair.”

Continue reading

How We Got The Bible

John F. MacArthur, Jr.

Ever since Eve encountered Satan’s barrage of doubt and denial (Gen. 3:1-7), mankind has continued to question God’s Word. Unfortunately, Eve had little or no help in sorting through her intellectual obstacles to full faith in God’s self-disclosure (Gen. 2:16,17).

Now the Scripture certainly has more than enough content to be interrogated, considering that it’s comprised of 66 books, 1,189 chapters, 31,173 verses, and 774,746 words. When you open your English translation to read or study, you might have asked in the past or are currently asking, “How can I be sure this is the pure and true Word of God?”

A question of this kind is not altogether bad, especially when one seeks to learn with a teachable mind (Acts 17:11). The Scripture invites the kinds of queries that a sincere student asks. Continue reading

The Humility of Jesus’ Servanthood

John MacArthur

Strength for Today

“Who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men.”
- Philippians 2:6-7

Jesus is the role model of the suffering servant.

Jesus not only gave up His divine privileges when He emptied Himself, but He also became a servant. For us, this is the next phase in His supreme example of humility. Paul’s phrase “the form of a bond-servant” can also be translated “the essence of a slave.” Christ’s servanthood was not just external—it extended to the essential, down-to-earth role of a bond-slave doing the will of His Father. Continue reading

John MacArthur on the Gift of Discernment

By on Feb 14, 2012

discerning of spirits(v.10)—Satan is the great deceiver (John 8:44) and his demons counterfeit God’s message and work. Christians with the gift of discernment have the God-given ability to recognize lying spirits and to identify deceptive and erroneous doctrine (see Acts 17:11; 1 John 4:1).

Paul illustrated the use of this gift in Acts 16:16-18, as Peter had exercised it in Acts 5:3. When it was not being exercised in the Corinthian church, grave distortion of the truth occurred (see v. 3; 14:29).

Though its operation has changed since apostolic times (because of the completion of Scripture) it is still essential to have people in the church who are discerning.  They are the guardians, the watchmen who protect the church from demonic lies, false doctrines, perverted cults, and fleshly elements. As it requires diligent study of the Word to exercise gifts of knowledge, wisdom, preaching, and teaching, so it does with discernment. [1] Continue reading