On The Verge of Apostasy?

Please read the ADDENDUM at the bottom of the page

On the Verge of Apostasy?

Catholic Dogma

Click on photo to link to Bill Randles' Blog

Click on photo to link to Bill Randles’ Blog

Though in the minority, there are some preachers and pastors who have not apostatized from the faith once delivered to us by the saints (Jude 1:3). However, there are many who for the sake of love and good relationships compromise their position and thus make them good candidates for apostasy.

I call them preachers who are on the verge of apostasy. Does God approve this kind of behaviour? I don’t think so. Paul wrote:

For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men? for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ. (Galatians 1:10).

In one of my recent conversations on the subject “Be clear about the mark . . . Rev 14”  with Christians on Pastor Bill Randles blog, one of the more vociferous commentators, Glenn E. Chatfield, blamed me for behaving like a Pharisee.

He made the observation when I voiced the opinion that John MacArthur is not saved. These were his words:

Tom Lessing,

So now you can judge MacArthur’s salvation?!? Does MacArthur confess Jesus as Lord? Yes. Does he believe that he was raised from the dead? Yes. According to Rom.10:9 he is saved. Seems to me you are adding perfect doctrine to salvation requirements. There are a lot of solid believers who don’t have all their ducks in a row when it comes to doctrine, but they are still saved.

I think Calvinism is almost as bad as Romanism, yet there are Catholics who are indeed saved in spite of the Church’s teachings because they can indeed find the truth among the chaff of Catholic dogma. (Emphasis added)

There are many Christians who are mixed up in their doctrinal understandings, yet in the one essential doctrine – that of faith in Christ for atonement of sin – they are solid believers. Nowhere in the Bible does it say you have to have full understanding of all doctrines to be saved.

You are behaving as a Pharisee. (Emphasis added).

ADDENDUM: Firstly, Glen E. Chatfield says you don’t necessarily need to have your ducks in a row when it comes to doctrine in order to be saved and then he asserts that Romans 10:9 is the Magna Carta of what it means to get your ducks in a row.

This is so typical of persons who have all their ducks in a row.

First they say you don’t need to have your ducks in a row and then they present you with their solution of how to get your ducks in a row.

It is called “arrogance.”

His incongruous statement is not merely harmful to the Gospel of Jesus Christ but leads people astray. Paul never said that anyone who confesses with his mouth the Lord Jesus Christ and believes in his heart that God raised Him from the dead IS already saved.

He said that those who confess this SHALL be saved. The confession with the mouth that Jesus is Lord and the belief in the heart that God raised Him from the dead is only the condition in order to be saved. A confession that Jesus is Lord means nothing (Matthew 7:21-23). It is NOT salvation proper.

How do we know this? We know this because he mentions another important proviso for salvation in verse 13, “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” The word “shall” appears here again and like verse 9 suggests that it is the condition to be met before anyone can be saved.

The conversion of Saul of Tarsus is a telling example of what I have put forward in the above paragraph. Most Bible scholars and many Christians believe that Saul was saved on his way to Damascus, when a bright light enveloped him, when he fell off his horse into the dust and when he heard the risen Lord speak to him personally, “Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me?”

If Romans 10:9 is salvation proper, then Saul was indeed saved on his way to Damascus. According to Chatfield’s rendition of Romans 10:9 Saul demonstrated every single prerequisite for salvation when he fell off his horse.

He called Jesus Christ “Lord.” (Acts 9:5) and experienced a vision of the risen Lord. Admittedly he didn’t know who was speaking to him but even after Christ Jesus revealed Himself to Him, he still needed to be told what to do in order to be saved.

“I am Jesus whom thou persecutest: it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks” . . . “Arise, and go into the city, and it shall be told thee what thou must do.” The thing he was to be told to do was to call on the Name of the Lord in order to be saved.” Jesus would never have told him what he needed to do in order to be saved if he’d already been saved on his way to Damascus.

Here’s the proof:

And one Ananias, a devout man according to the law, having a good report of all the Jews which dwelt there,

Came unto me, and stood, and said unto me, Brother Saul, receive thy sight. And the same hour I looked up upon him. And he said,

The God of our fathers hath chosen thee, that thou shouldest know his will, and see that Just One, and shouldest hear the voice of his mouth.

For thou shalt be his witness unto all men of what thou hast seen and heard.

And now why tarriest thou? arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord. (Acts 22:12-16).

Saul of Tarsus was saved and became Paul in Ananias’ home in Damascus the moment he called on the Name of the Lord to forgive him all his sins and to wash and cleanse him of all his unrighteousness.

Only then was Paul saved. The baptism spoken of here is NOT John the Baptist’s water baptism.

It is the Baptism of the Holy Spirit into the Name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost and above all into the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. (Luke 3:16; Acts 1:5, Romans 6:3-4).

As we’ve seen, Paul’s conversion and salvation is a carbon copy not only of Romans 10:9 but also of Romans 10:13.

He called Jesus “Lord” and believed that God had raised Him from the dead and also called on the Name of the Lord for his salvation.

Let us now evaluate Glen  E. Chatfield’s claim that John MacArthur is saved on account of what he believes in Romans 10:9. John MacArthur may confess Jesus as Lord and even believe in his heart that God raised him from the dead.

Nonetheless, does he believe that sinners need to call on the Name of the Lord in order to be saved? MacArthr acknowledges Romans 10:13 as a necessity for salvation but calls it a mystery no one can fully understand. He says in an article he wrote for Grace to You:-

Paul continues in the next chapter by saying, “If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved … for ‘whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved'” (10:9, 13).

How these two sides of God’s truth – His sovereignty in choosing us (Rom. 9) and our responsibility to confess and believe (Rom. 10) – reconcile is impossible for us to understand fully. But Scripture declares both perspectives of salvation to be true (John 1:12-13). It’s our duty to acknowledge both and joyfully accept them by faith.

Of course no one will understand why it is necessary to call on the Name of the Lord for salvation when the elect had already been saved monergistically without them having to put your faith in Jesus Christ in order to be saved.

It is absolutely ludicrous to try and reconcile the irreconcilable, that is to call on the Name of the Lord for salvation when the elect had already sovereignly and monergistically been saved.

It may be likened to a criminal who had already been pardoned and released from prison to approach the authorities and beg them to pardon and release him from prison.

If this is the essence of salvation, then I cannot do otherwise but to agree with MacArthur that the way of salvation is a mystery no one can understand.

Why would God who has no pleasure in the death of the wicked (Ezekiel 18:32) and desires all men to be saved (1 Titus 2:4), and is perfectly just and righteous design a doctrine no one can understand?

To make it even more difficult to understand MacArthur wraps his incomprehensible doctrine of salvation in a cloak of absolute inability. He writes on Grace to You:-

Now, any discussion of the doctrine of predestination or the doctrine of divine sovereign election, or, if you will, sovereign salvation as a work of God is based on another doctrine, on another doctrine. God must save us. He must choose us, call us, regenerate us, justify us by His divine power because we are neither willing nor able to do it for ourselves. And this takes us to what I’m going to call the doctrine of absolute inability. I’ve never heard it called that but that serves my purpose to explain what we mean. . .

Dead men can’t hear. Dead men can’t think. Dead men can’t respond cause they’re dead and dead means the absolute inability to do anything in response to any stimulus. There’s no will. There’s no power to think or act.

If man, as MacArthur and all Calvinists assert, is so dead in sins and trespasses that he is absolutely unable to hear the Gospel, to think through the demands of the Gospel and to respond in faith to the Gospel in order to be saved, why then did God inspire Paul to urge lost sinners to call on the Name of the Lord and be saved? Paul could just as well have written: 

 . . . because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord (which you are absolutely unable to do) and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead (which you are absolutely unable to do), you will be saved (because you have been elected and predestined unto election before the foundation of the world). (Romans 10:9)

For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord (which you are absolutely unable to do) will be saved” (because you have been elected and predestined unto salvation before the foundation of the world). (Romans 10:13)

I searched the Scriptures to see whether Chatfield’s statement “there are Catholics who are indeed saved in spite of the Church’s teachings because they can indeed find the truth among the chaff of Catholic dogma” is true and must admit that I found the following eye-opening verses.

And ye shall know the truth (by wading through the chaff), and the truth (among the chaff) shall make you free. (John 8:32)

Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth  (among the chaff), and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me (and the chaff). (John 14:6)

Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth (who wades through the chaff), is come, he will guide you into all truth (by wading though the chaff): for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come (by wading through the chaff). (John 16:13)

This is what the Bible says of people who don’t have all their ducks in a row when it comes to doctrine. Had our dear friend searched the Scriptures like the Bereans of old, he would have known these verses. Nowhere in the Bible? Really???

Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son.

If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed:

For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds. (2 John 1:9-11).

If you don’t have all your ducks in a row when it comes to doctrine, you are not saved. Kapisch?

The problem with most “Christians” in our day and age is that they’ve become insensitive to sound doctrine and are quite prepared to compromise their own faith for the sake of the chaff which is going to be thrown in the fire to burn with an unquenchable fire (Matthew 3:12).

In Titus 1:9 Christians are exhorted “to hold fast the faithful word as they hath been taught, that they may be able by sound doctrine (not “chaff” Mr. Glenn Chatfield) both to exhort and to convince the gainsayers.”

Glenn Chatfield’s attitude does not help those who are deceived in the very least because it merely pacifies those who are in error on their way to hell.

To my utter dismay and shock, Bill Randles supported Chatfield’s anti-biblical stance that anyone can be saved despite the chaff of their dogmas. This is what Bill Randles said:

Amen, Glenn! (Emphasis added).

Chatfield and Randles may have forgotten that there are many false teachers who have embraced a false Jesus, a false spirit and a false Gospel despite their belief that Jesus was crucified, buried and raised from the dead on the third day (2 Corinthians 11:13-15).

To confess Jesus as Lord means nothing – zilch, nada, zero.

“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.” (Mat 7:22-23).

The word “amen,” as every Christian ought to know, means “so be it.” It places a stamp of approval on everything said before the “amen.”

In this way both Chatdfield and Randles are sending a message to ex-Catholics and Catholics that it is OK to believe in the following chaff infested dogmas and still be saved.

  • Regenerational baptism
  • Purgatory.
  • Transubstantiation (Sacrifice of the Mass)
  • Adoration of the host
  • Worship of Mother Mary as Mediatrix
  • The immaculate conception of Mary
  • Veneration of angels and dead saints.
  • Extreme unction
  • Kissing of the Pope’s feet
  • Papal infallibility and Apostolic succession
  • Indulgences
  • Canonization of dead saints.
  • Celibacy
  • Confession of sin to the priest
  • The Rosary
  • Stigmata

Bill Randles would probably argue that he did not say “amen” to Glenn Chatfiled’s view on the chaff in Roman Catholicism and the salvation of some Catholics despite the aforementioned chaff, but to his affirmation that John MacArthur is saved in the light of Romans 10:9.

Both our learned friends would agree that the Pharisee to whom Jesus referred in Matthew 18 was not saved. They dare not argue to the contrary because Jesus Himself said:-

Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican.

The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican.

I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess.

And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner.

I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted. (Luke 18:10-14).

Grace to You John MacArthur - Take Mark of the Beast Repent Be Saved

In case you do not know, this is John MacArthur

Lo and behold, John MacArtrhur has a similar testimony in which he boldly states that he always believed and never rebelled against God.

His claim that he never rebelled against God is akin to saying ” I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican”.

In an interview Phil Johnson had with John MacArthur, John explained his conversion as follows:

PHIL: “So you’re saying, are you saying it would be difficult for you to put your finger on when your conversion took place?”

JOHN: “Yeah. I’ve never been able to do that. And it doesn’t bother me. I think I’m one of those kids.

I was one of those kids that NEVER REBELLED AND ALWAYS BELIEVED. And so, when God did His saving work in my heart, IT WAS NOT DISCERNIBLE TO ME.

I went away to high school and for all I knew, I loved Christ, I was part of the ministry of the church.

I went away to college and I wanted to serve the Lord and honor the Lord. I was certainly immature.

But at some point along the line, I really do believe there was a transformation in my heart, but I think it may have been to some degree imperceptible to me, because I didn’t ever have a rebellious time, I didn’t ever revolt against, you know, the gospel or not believe.

And I guess that’s, in some ways that’s a grace act on God’s part. So that all that wonderful training found some level of fertile soil in my heart and none of it was wasted.” (Emphasis added).

MacArthur couldn’t discern when and how he was saved? Really? He didn’t discern that his sins were forgiven and the unspeakable joy that usually follows  the forgiveness of sins? Really?

I am not trying to bash John MacArthur. I am concerned for John MacArthur and merely warning others who may have been influenced by his testimony to think that they too have always believed and never rebelled against God because they had always been the sheep of Christ’s fold.

In fact, Calvinists believe, because they had been elected unto salvation before the foundation of the earth, that they had always been God’s people (children).

This is a very dangerous and false foundation and exceptionally deceitful and yet Chatfield and Randles agree that I behave like a Pharisee when I assert that MacArthur is not saved.

They readily agree that MacArthur’s Pharisaic testimony (aka Luke 18:10-14) is OK and yet belligerently call me a Pharisee. (Bill Randles did not call me a Pharisee in so many words but agreed with Glenn Chatfield that I was wrong to assert that John MacArthur is not saved.

In fact, when Chatfield called me a Pharisee in another comment, Randles did not repudiate him.

John Cochrane joined the fray against me when he sated that I am sending people to hell.

Tom is assigning many people to hell when he begins labeling what they believe in regards to soteriology as heretical.

For a heresy by biblical definition has to do with “the faith once delivered to the saints.” So if he is right, then Calvinists are nothing more than Roman Catholics believing in a false gospel.

(Please note that there are hypers, hyper-calvinist and hyper-arminians, and both have anathematized the others soteriology.)

Both he and Glenn Chatfield boast that they know Calvinism inside out. The irony, however, is that they don’t know that Calvinists are the ones who are assigning people to hell. This is how I responded to their insipid claim.

Indeed, like Calvin, John MacArthur and everyone who holds to the so called Doctrines of Grace (TULIP) are assigning people to hell. Their own words prove that they are assigning people to hell.

The Canon of Dort declares: “For this was the sovereign counsel, and most gracious will and purpose of God the Father, that . . . the most precious death of his Son should extend to all the elect . . . all those, and those only, who were from eternity chosen to salvation . . . he purchased by his death.”

In other words, the rest also known as the reprobate or non-elect are summarily assigned to hell.

John MacArthur says:

“Why did God choose not to love everyone like that? I’ll give you a good guess, and maybe not a guess. The reason God did not choose to love everyone savingly, is because the love of God is qualified by his glory, by his glory.”

When a child asked him why God did not choose everyone to be saved, he said the following:

“Why didn’t God choose everyone to be saved? You know something, honey? I don’t know. I don’t know.

But, I’ll give you a basic answer, OK? And the basic answer-and I hope you can understand this-the basic answer is: because He got more glory for his own name by doing it the way He did it. God does what He does for His glory. And somehow, in some way, God is glorified in what He did, and that’s why He did it.”

MacArthur does not only assign the reprobate to hell; he says it gives God more glory.

To taketh or not to taketh the mark of the beast Mark of the beast

The furore surrounding John MacArthur’s public statement that anyone who takes the mark of the beast in the tribulation is not irretrievably lost and may still be saved is not uncommon among Calvinists and some non-Calvinists. Many others believe the same heresy. John Cochrane wrote:

Many in here (even myself for many years) assumed that once you take the Mark, your done, no more chances. But then that should lead to three questions. And if we are truly honest we will allow the Word of God to inform our thinking and not our thinking to inform Scripture.

What are those three questions? There are many more that we need ask to ensure faithful understanding, but for the sake of space I will ask these three for now.

First- Though the tribulation period will be a time dramatically different in regards to widespread persecution and darkness, does that mean that the Grace of God will operate differently?

As I said, if we honestly look at the WHOLE council of Scripture, and not just snippets, what will our answer be?

Secondly- What do we do with Jesus’ own words in Mark 3:28-29

28 “Truly, I say to you, all sins will be forgiven the children of man, and whatever blasphemies they utter, 29 but whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit never has forgiveness, but is guilty of an eternal sin”-

Thirdly- For what sins did Jesus die for? Was it only for certain categorical sins? And to tie this to the first question, does the efficacy of Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross end once the Tribulation starts?

Like MacArthur, John Cochrane bases his assertion on the fact that the taking of the mark of the beast is NOT the unpardonable sin. In his defense of John MacArthur’s controversial statement, Phil Johnson wrote here.

Though there is a stern warning against taking the mark of the Beast in Revelation 14, the sin is not categorically said to be unpardonable. (That would contradict Matthew 12:31.) The point of the severe language in Revelation 14 is to make clear what an utterly reprehensible sin it will be to swear an oath of willful loyalty to Antichrist.

Apart from the fact that all sin is reprehensible (and not only the taking of the mark of the beast), the question remains whether the latter sin is the unpardonable sin and if so, how do we prove it? Phil Johnson, in behalf of John MacArthur describes the unpardonable sin as follows:

Jesus Himself said, “Any sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven people, but blasphemy against the Spirit shall not be forgiven ” (Matthew 12:31, emphasis added).

The one unpardonable sin was the sin of those who had seen His miracles with their own eyes; they knew He was the true Messiah; they were part of the generation to whom He was personally sent.

And yet they attributed His powers to Satan. That was unforgivable because it was such a hard-hearted, willful expression of utter rejection from fully enlightened hearts, who punctuated their rejection with an extreme blasphemy.

Those Pharisees had stood in the presence of the living embodiment of all truth; they heard His words and saw His works. All the mysteries of Christ had been unveiled before their very eyes. And yet they spurned Him.

There was nothing else that could be shown to them to enlighten them further. They were not deceived; they knew full well what they were doing.

That’s why their sin was unpardonable (cf. 1 Timothy 1:13). (Emphasis added)

I wholeheartedly agree. Indeed, the Pharisees were eyewitnesses to the many miracles Jesus performed to prove that He is the Son of the living God, yet they shunned Him. They REFUSED to believe on Him. Jesus even went so far as to say:-

I told you, and ye believed not: the works that I do in my Father’s name, they bear witness of me.  . . .

If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not. But if I do, though ye believe not me, believe the works: that ye may know, and believe, that the Father is in me, and I in him. John 10:25; 37-38)

These two things – miracles and outright refusal – are going to play a major role in the taking of the mark of the beast during the tribulation.

In fact, those who are going to take the mark of the beast are going to be guilty of exactly the same sin – the unpardonable sin – the Pharisees were guilty of in the time of Jesus Christ.

No one will be ignorant of Jesus Christ’s miracles during the tribulation. The 144 000 sealed Jews whom Jesus is going to send out into the whole world to proclaim his Gospel, will perform many miracles.

Like the Pharisees, the tribulation population will  stand in the presence of God’s truth and witness the many miracles He is going to perform through his emissaries.

In fact, the many and diverse judgments that are coming upon the world during the tribulation will be ample proof that God Himself is working miracles in their midst (Isaiah 26:9).

Despite these miracles and marvelous signs the majority of people are going to spurn God’s miracles and instead wholeheartedly, willingly and defiantly receive the false miracles Antichrist is going to perform.

And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming:

Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders,

And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. (2 Thessalonians 2:8-10). (Read here.)

How does this differ from the Pharisees who attributed God’s miracles to Satan?

There is no difference whatsoever. In fact, the tribulation Pharisees’ unpardonable sin will be much worse than that of the Pharisees in Jesus’ time.

They are going to attribute Christ-hood (Messiahship) to Satan himself.

They are going to accept his false miracles and worship his image placed in the most holy sanctuary of the newly rebuilt temple in Jerusalem.

That WILL be the unforgivable sin because, to use Phil Johnson’s own words, it will be such a hard-hearted, willful expression of utter rejection from fully enlightened hearts, who will punctuate their rejection with an extreme blasphemy.

Moreover, the tribulation population’s refusal to repent, just as the Pharisees’ refusal to receive Jesus as their Saviour, will be the last nail in their coffin.

Here is my rebuttal to John Cochrane’s view.

First of all it is not merely their adoration of Antichrist that will damn them; it is the taking of his mark that seals their fate.

The mark itself is a sign that they are defiantly worshiping Antichrist (Satan personified) as the only true God, in spite of their acute knowledge that Jesus Christ’s Second Advent to judge the nations is imminent and that his Kingdom is at the door.

Hence the phrase “and his image.” Where is his image? In the most holy sanctuary in the rebuilt temple in Jerusalem.

Since the tribulation is primarily a time for the Jews to repent and receive Jesus Christ as their Saviour (Jeremiah 30:7), the message preached by God’s servants (144 000 sealed Jews) to the entire world during the tribulation will be the same John the Baptist, Jesus and his disciples preached at the beginning of Matthew:

“Repent ye for the Kingdom of God is at hand.”

The message preached today and the message proclaimed in the tribulation calls for a turning to the only Saviour.

However, in the tribulation the message will stress the coming of the Kingdom, and those who then turn to the Saviour for salvation will be allowed entrance into His Kingdom.

The worship of Antichrist and his image as well as the taking of his mark is a deliberate, rebellious and obstinate refusal to prepare for Christ’s Kingdom through faith and repentance .

And this is exactly why God’s wrath will be poured out on them without them ever desiring or wanting to repent.

“O LORD, do not your eyes look for truth? You have struck them down, but they felt no anguish; you have consumed them, but they refused to take correction. They have made their faces harder than rock; they have refused to repent.” (Jeremiah 5:3)

And I heard a great voice out of the temple saying to the seven angels, Go your ways, and pour out the vials of the wrath of God upon the earth.

And the first went, and poured out his vial upon the earth; and there fell a noisome and grievous sore upon the men which had the mark of the beast, and upon them which worshipped his image.

And the second angel poured out his vial upon the sea; and it became as the blood of a dead man: and every living soul died in the sea.

And the third angel poured out his vial upon the rivers and fountains of waters; and they became blood. And I heard the angel of the waters say, Thou art righteous, O Lord, which art, and wast, and shalt be, because thou hast judged thus.

For they have shed the blood of saints and prophets, and thou hast given them blood to drink; for they are worthy.

And I heard another out of the altar say, Even so, Lord God Almighty, true and righteous are thy judgments.

And the fourth angel poured out his vial upon the sun; and power was given unto him to scorch men with fire.

And men were scorched with great heat, and blasphemed the name of God, which hath power over these plagues: and they repented not to give him glory. (Revelation 16:1-9)

I am sure you must have noticed that those who refuse to repent are the culprits who worship the beast and his image and have taken his mark. Therefore, it is not that they cannot repent but because they refuse to repent that leads to their imminent judgment.

This is so plain that even a child can understand it and yet MacArthur and you believe that some of those who worship the beast and his image and take his mark will repent of their heinous deeds and receive Jesus as their Saviour. The Bible actually teaches the very opposite.

Cochrane then asks three questions to underline his view that some among the beast worshipers will repent and receive Jesus as their Saviour.

“First- Though the tribulation period will be a time dramatically different in regards to widespread persecution and darkness, does that mean that the Grace of God will operate differently?”

It depends on what Cochrane means by grace. If he’s referring to the Calvinistic “Irresistible Grace,” then, yes some of those who worship the beast and his image and take is mark may indeed be monergistically regenerated in the Calvinistic way of salvation.

All that needs to be done, is for God to irresistibly zap them into regeneration without them having to believe in order to be saved. And this, I think is why MacArthur maintains that some beast worshipers will be saved.

“Secondly- What do we do with Jesus’ own words in Mark 3:28-29?”

One of the main traits of sinning against the Holy Spirit is to stubbornly, rebelliously and persistently shun his conviction of sin, righteousness and judgment and that’s exactly what the beast worshipers are going to do – refuse point blank to repent. (Revelation 16:1-9).

“Thirdly- For what sins did Jesus die for? Was it only for certain categorical sins? And to tie this to the first question, does the efficacy of Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross end once the Tribulation starts?”

The question should not be “for what sins did Jesus die.” The question should be “when and how are sins forgiven.” Once again, it is glaringly evident that the beast worshipers can be forgiven but they don’t want to be forgiven, unless, of course, Revelation 16:1-9 is a lie.

John MacArthur, being a staunch Calvinist, believes in the absolute sovereignty of God, albeit a distorted interpretation of God’s sovereignty.

As such MacArthur asserts that, because God is sovereign and does as He pleases, and because monergism (and not synergism) forms the basis of His redemption, He is free to save whom He wants and to damn whom He wants.

Therefore, his contention that someone who has taken the mark of the beast is not irretrievably lost and can still be saved, stems from the premise that God is sovereign and saves whom He pleases – even some of those who had taken the mark of the beast.

The only proviso for them to be saved is that they must be elect persons who by virtue of deception had taken the mark of the beast and, as Calvinists usually argue, we don’t know who the elect are. They can even be among the culprits who had taken the mask of the beast.

MacArthur’s reasoning may be summed up as follows: The view that those who had taken the mark of the beast are irretrievably lost (can never be saved) seriously compromises God sovereignty and as such it undermines the Doctrines of Grace entrenched in TULIP.

And this, my dear friends, is the reason why they have to secure their doctrines of grace and defend their distorted view of God’s sovereignty at all cost, even to the extent where they have to compromise the Bible’s teaching on the mark of the beast, because if they don’t, it would be the death knell of Calvinism.

Like Bill Randles, Jacob Prasch seems to think John MacArthur tells the truth. Read here. 


I have since come across a video on YouTube that demonstrates Jacob Prasch’s changed view of John MacArthur, especially on the issue of the mark of the beast.

Throughout my 45 years of being saved I’ve noticed again and again a very peculiar trend among Christians.

Many of them have the highest regard for Calvinists because they are extremely skillful in exposing false doctrine among Pentecostals, Charismatics, the Emerging Church, Mormonism, Roman Catholicism etc. but they turn a blind eye to the Calvinists erroneous soteriology that cannot save.

I have often asked myself whether God can tolerate an attitude of “It does not matter what you believe in regard to how one must be saved. We are brothers and sisters in Christ when you speak out against the same things I do.” As far as I know, Jacob Prasch has always been against Reformed Theology embedded in TULIP and yet he once said the following:

May God Bless Dave Hunt, Roger Oakland, Tony Peace, David Hocking, Arnold Fruchtenbaum, Warren Smith, Ray Yungen, Chuck Smith, Jack Hibbs, Bill Randles, Philip Powell, Mike Gendron, David Wilkerson, Ray Comfort, Justin Peters, Paul Washer, John MacArthur, Stuart Dool, Doug Harris, John Higgins, Joseph Fara, Bob De Waay and the other servants of the One True God who labor to uphold God’s eternal truth and proclaim the true Gospel in this age of apostasy and decline.

None of these men are perfect or without flaw, nor above all either am I. But by the grace of God all of them tell the truth. (Emphasis added) (Read here).

What does the Bible say?

Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son.

If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed:

For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds. (2 John 1-9-11).

According to God’s Word Jacob Prasch is a partaker of John MacMarthur’s, Justin Peter’s and Paul Washer’s evil deeds.

So, now we blame God’s grace for the Calvinists’ erroneous soteriology of election and predestination unto salvation because they allegedly tell the truth? Really?

Prasch actually told the body of Christ throughout the world:

“It’s OK to follow Paul Washer, Justin Peters and John MacArthur in their abominable doctrines of election and predestination because “by the grace of God all of them tell the truth.

So, it’s OK to go against God and his doctrine of salvation, but a mortal sin to lambaste one of Jacob Prasch’s buddies (Chuck Smith), and that my dear friends is unforgivable.

NO! I really don’t think God can tolerate such a patristic attitude.

Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son.

If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed:

For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds. (2 John 1:9-11)

Justin Peters

Justin Peters


Paul Washer

Jacob Prasch bid Paul Washer, Justin Peters and John MacArthur God speed when he put a feather in their caps for exposing error in the Pentecostal, Charismatic, Emergent, Mormon and Roman Catholic churches despite their villainous misrepresentation of God and his doctrine of salvation.

This is wicked, very wicked, to say the least. 

In the meantime,. both Glenn E. Chatfield  and Bill Randles are adamant to recant and admit their view – that the Truth may be found among the chaff of the Roman Catholic Church and Calvinism – is not only wrong but a slap in the face of Jesus Christ who IS the Truth.

Listen up, gentlemen, THEIR IS NO, I REPEAT, NO CHAFF IN JESUS CHRIST. The Jesus in Roman Catholicism and Calvinism is another Jesus and in him their are tons and tons of chaff. 

Please share:

Tom Lessing (Discerning the World)

Tom Lessing is the author of the above article. Discerning the World is an internet Christian Ministry based in Johannesburg South Africa. Tom Lessing and Deborah Ellish both own Discerning the World. For more information see the About this Website page below the comments section.

7 Responses

  1. I commented on Bill Randles’ blog

    My reponse to Bill Randles was as follows:

    Marg says:
    January 6, 2015 at 8:01 pm

    Perhaps John MacArthur has been compromised? I also respected him as a solid Bible teacher, but if Billy Graham could be compromised who couldn’t.

    I believe there are people who will be made to take the mark against their will. The antichrist will “cause” them to take the mark. Think of the implementation of Obama Care for example. People are caused to buy into it. The antichrist will “cause” people to take the mark by making it a legal requirement and those who refuse won’t be able to do any kind of commerce. Also, mkultra individuals who have been chipped against their will are getting saved. My point is that there are people being chipped/implanted against their will, many times without their knowledge, can they be saved?

    billrandles says:
    January 6, 2015 at 9:29 pm

    If it is against your will you are not responsible for it in my humble opinion…

    I wrote this in reply.

    Leave a Reply
    Bill, I am a little confused. Are you saying that those who are going to take the mark of the beast against their will, won’t be responsible for their actions and may even be saved after they had allegedly been forced to take the mark of the beast? The Antichrist causes men to take his mark but he cannot force them. Those under the altar who had been slain (beheaded) for the faith in Jesus Christ (Rev 6:9), prove beyond any doubt that Antichrist will not be able to force anyone to take his mark. To “Cause” and to “force” are not the same.

  2. Deborah (Discerning the World) says:

    The chip that people are currently taking is NOT the Mark of the Beast – this is confusing a lot of people. I believe the Mark of the Beast is something far more sinister than an implanted ship. For one thing the bible says it will be in your hand OR your forehead, and you imagine people walking around with a chip in their foreheads having to bump their heads on everything to pay for transactions? Nope, the MotB is something far more sinister, maybe a tattoo that is visible containing the Beasts number 666.

    When it comes to taking the REAL MotB you will be deliberately pledging your allegiance to Satan. It will not be forced on you in a sense that they will hold you down and mark you against your will, it will be your choice to take it.

  3. Deborah (Discerning the World) says:

    Also all those who take the Mak of the Beast will break out in the most terrible painful sores all over their body!

  4. Deborah (Discerning the World) says:

    Fortunately Bill Randles ‘humble opinion’ is not true otherwise people will be in trouble if they listen to him. You have to read what the bible says about the worshiping the beast and taking his mark to understand what will really happen.

  5. Johan says:

    Hi Tom,
    Wil graag by jou weet of dit die moeite werd gaan wees om Bill Randles te luister as hy Suid Afrika toe kom?
    EK is nie seker oor hierdie man se Teologiese oortuigings nie en wil nie graag op n dwaal gelei word net omdat die man dalk n baie goeie spreker en oortuiger is nie.
    Dankie vir jou mening

  6. Hi Johan :hi:

    Tom will come back to you asap.

    I didn’t know he was coming here, thank you for that info.

    [Edited: Johan, please give me link to info, I can’t seem to find it on his website/blog]

  7. Hi Johan, Baie dankie vir jou comment. Ek het Bill Randles jare gelede in Suid-Afrika hoor preek en was toe heel beindruk met sy eksegese van die Bybel. Hoedanig hy deesdaae preek, kan ek nie sê nie. Wat ek maar gewoonlik doen wnneer ek na predikers gaan luister, is om hierdie gebed te bid, “Here, gee my asseblief ‘n baie fyn onderskeiding om te kan waarneem wanneer so en so nie volgens U Woord preek nie. Ek wil nie mislei word nie omdat Uself gesê het ‘Pasop dat niemand julle mislei nie.'”

    Ek het juis vanoggend vir my vrou gesê, “Deesdae moet ons baie seker maak van watter Jesus mense, veral jou vriende en vriendinne, praat. Dis ‘Jesus’ voor en ‘Jesus” agter en wanneer jy so ‘n bietjie dieper gaan en indringende vrae begin vra, kom jy agter dis ‘n ander Jesus, ‘n ander evangelie en ‘n ander gees.” Ek sê nie Bill Randles is een van hulle nie. Wat ek sê, is dat ons alle mense, wiie dit ookal mag wees, se preke, boeke, artikels ens. moet toets aan die hand van God se Woord. Ook ons artikels hier op Discerning the World moet jy so toets. Dink bietjie daaraan, die klomp Bereane in Tessalonika was ongelowiges wat vir Paulus gesê het, “Ons gaan eers die Skrifte ondersoek om te kyk of dit wat jy ons vertel het die waarheid is.” (Handeline 17:10-11).


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