From my earliest experience in the kingdom of God, for as long as I can remember, people have been telling me, “We need to be more ecumenical.” When I was in high school, teachers and other students told me that. When I was in college all the professors (without exception) and my fellow students told me the same thing. Even those who claimed to believe the gospel of God’s grace.
It did not take me long to understand that they meant to say, “YOU need to be more ecumenical.” Insisting, as I have from the beginning that all Arminian, free will, man centered, works religion is both blasphemous and idolatrous, I have never been able to compromise enough to get along with the rest of the religious world. Things are no different today. God helping me, things will be no different tomorrow.
Moving Back To Rome
In recent years I have observed an ever increasing move in almost all Protestant denominations toward Romanism. Though few openly advocate that Protestantism and Romanism should actually become one, the vast majority believe they should act as one. In other words, modern Protestant church leaders would have us believe that the Protestant Reformation was a mistake, the blood of the martyrs was shed in vain, and the papcy, mariolitry, indulgences, purgatory, rosary beads, nunneries, and monasticism are acceptable forms of worship. Such nonsense is just the kind of stuff we have learned to expect from men and women who ignore the Word of God and imagine that they are smarter than God.
Compromising The Gospel
Something I find much more disturbing than the move of Protestantism toward Rome. Many who know that the Word of God plainly teaches what men call Calvinism feel very uncomfortable with the doctrines of grace. They want to be accepted in the religious world without having to deny their convictions altogether. The only way that is possible is to compromise the gospel at its most vital and most offensive point. Multitudes these days are denying particular and effectual redemption. Carrying Fullerism (the teachings of Andrew Fuller) to its logical conclusion, they have recanted the biblical doctrine of limited atonement. I realize that they do so with a pretense of piety and scholarly investigation. However, I have known some of these men since our college days. I know better. They are compromising the gospel for nothing more than the approval and acceptance of men! They have always been Arminians at heart. They have always believed that as long as a person is (in their opinion) sincere and godly that he is saved, no matter what he believes. The thing that disturbs me is that now they are leading many away to perdition by their deceitful ways.
No Turning Back
Long ago I counted the cost of following Christ and preaching the gospel of God’s free and sovereign grace to sinners in him. Indeed, I count the cost every day. To do so means isolation, slander, and ridicule. God’s servants and God’s people have always been found outside the camp of mainstream religion with Christ, not outside looking in, but outside by choice. Before I even knew what the Calvinism/Arminianism debate was all about, as a seventeen year old boy just recently converted, I recall saying to a friend, “Anyone who even faintly imagines that he has something to do with his salvation is lost. Salvation is by grace alone!” Nothing has changed except the firmness of that conviction. Every true believer, every saved sinner worships at the throne of the thrice holy, sovereign Lord God. We gladly acknowledge and rejoice in the gospel doctrines of electing love, limited atonement, and irresistible grace. Why? Because we understand that we would never have chosen Christ had he not chosen us. We could never atone for our own sins or make ourselves acceptable to God. Our only hope is in the sin-atoning, justice satisfying sacrifice of the Lord Jesus Christ, which demands the salvation of every ransomed soul. We know that we, being dead in trespasses and sins, would not and could not come to Christ until he sent his Spirit in irresistible power and invincible grace to fetch us to himself. AMEN.
Grace For Today Radio Message #549
Grace Baptist Church of Danville - Danville, KY 40422 - 9438 - Donald S. Fortner, Pastor