John Piper Debates A.W. Tozer

John Piper

John Piper

John Piper debates A.W. Tozer in defence of TULIP

John Piper made nine videos in defense of TULIP and Calvinism which can be viewed on his site “Desiring God.” In response to the Calvinists’ unbiblical view of God’s sovereignty an ex-Calvinist, Leighton Flowers, Professor of Theology at Dallas Baptist University, Director of Youth Evangelism for Texas Baptists and a local teaching pastor, made this excellent audio. The music itself is not my cup of tea. However, it does not diminish the value of his message in anyway.  Leighton Flowers succeeds in his exposure of the hypocrisy of the Calvinistic view of God’s sovereignty.

Please share:

Tom (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.

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9 Comment authors
UDay VarmaRamakant AtreDirkColleenColleen Recent comment authors
Deborah (Discerning the World)
Admin

That’s the only thing Calvinism has done for the church is hammer on the fact of the Sovereignty of God and who God is. The problem is it’s a warped view, a Calvinistic view, one where the Calvinist god can not handle men who have free will, thereby He supposedly took it away in order to cope. Genuine Christianity and a genuine Christian will understand the Sovereignty of God and who God is and know that God is so Sovereign that He CAN give man free will because He is God! Now that is understanding the Sovereignty of God and KNOWING who God is! smile

Jacob Gonzales
Guest
Jacob Gonzales

Wow. That clip you posted from Flowers was powerful. Before listening to this I really kind of was a Calvinist, although I had really appreciated non-Calvinistic writings. Now it’s making me think more that Calvinism is warped. I’m going to do deeper study and pray about all this.

Thank you for posting this. I’ve only been born again for a little over 5 months now but one of the first books I read was from John Piper. And it really shaped some of the views I had about God. Like Flowers said, respect to Piper but Calvinism seems to really underestimate the sovereignty of the Lord Jesus Christ. God is glorious in everything and He is so glorious that He allows free will because even in the decisions by man to do evil God can still and will always have the victory because He is God. Once again thanks for the post

Deborah (Discerning the World)
Admin

Dear Jacob

This is beautiful beautiful news! Thank you for commenting.

maryann
Guest
maryann

I heard that John Piper also claims to have made a trip to heaven, I think the name of his book is 90 minutes in heaven. I don’t believe any of these so called excursions to heaven!

Deborah (Discerning the World)
Admin

Don’t worry Maryann, I made that mistake too a while ago… John Piper, Don Piper – I thought they were brothers haha.

Colleen
Guest
Colleen

I was in a calvinist church (presbyterian) for about 38 yrs. After reading your articles on Calvinism i now realised i was so wrong in my belief. I have come out of the church and repented of my belief as being elected and chosen by God. All that rubbish preaching, i have to get rid off in my mind. What do you think of zac poonen. His teaching seems drawing people to Christ. I need your help in this area. Now i feel that I’m a new christian learning everything all over again.Thank you so much for helping me see the Light.

Deborah (Discerning the World)
Admin

Colleen

That is wonderful news smile Praise Jesus Christ for this miracle. I don’t know anything about Zac, will see what I can suss out smile

Colleen
Guest
Colleen

I can never thank both Thomas n Deborah enough for the wonderful work you have done for the Lord. Once again thank you for educating me in so many aspects of my christain walk n the warnings about false teachings in this website. May you continue to do the good work for the Lord. As for Zac Poonen i would be glad if you can find time to show me whether he is a false teacher.

Dirk
Guest
Dirk

Have been listening to brother Zac for many years. He has always edified me.

Deborah (Discerning the World)
Admin

Hi Dirk hi

Thank you for your comment.

I have watched 2 videos so far and I am very happy with what I hear so far…if someone can show me something specific that brothers them, then we can analyse it and come to a reasonable conclusion. But so far so good.

Deborah (Discerning the World)
Admin

Ok, after much listening to Zac Poonen, there are a few problems:

1) He does not believe in a Rapture before the Tribulation.
2) It appears he believes you can lose your salvation – he says you have to set up a permanent residence in Jesus Christ not a temporary apartment to come and go as you want.
I was under the full biblical understanding it was the Holy Spirit who set up permanent residence in us and through Him we are sanctified.
3) He believes in 2 types of Christians – the super holy Christians vs. Christians who are not very holy. It appears you will only be taken up at the end of the Tribulation if you are totally spotless. Jesus is not coming for a tainted bride, but a pure white one.
All born again Christians are the Bride of Christ, there are no levels or degrees of holiness and if you are a 10/10 you will be caught up at the end of the Trib, but if you are a 6/10 you Jesus is going to ignore you.

Okay then…

Ramakant Atre
Guest
Ramakant Atre

Dear Sister Deborah. Your website is really very important and a blessing. Quite honestly I have not really watched most programmes of John Macarthur or read his books and like wise the others. Of most of the Christian preachers I do know and have heard who are world renowned were Billy Graham ,Charles Stanley, Chuck Missler, Ravi Zacharias, Carter Conlon and I have admired their speeches. Honestly I am not one who is possibly that theologically sound to comment on who is actually the right one to listen to. I take what helps me. I have trials actually several trials but I take what helps to keep me going. For that matter I like Joyce Meyer (inspite of what people say about her). I will tell you the reason for it. I have come across Macarthur and Zac Poonen through their “disciples”. I have heard about them rather and their attitude or appearance is always ” to appear holy and busy” than actually be holy. I believe Bible stresses the importance of Love (loving neighbour etc.) more than anything else. That was missing in these people’s case. In case of JMA entirely- they would go around yapping theory, nonsense, etc. which may be good to sound but does not literally help anybody. What I noticed was if a person is suffering (for example myself)- there was no room for encouragement, faith upliftment or help. I am not talking about charity. If you recall the conversation of Job and his friends, JMA’s disciples are Job’s friends. Knittpicking, I told you so attitude, trying to be extremely perfect like saying we only read JMA bible etc and finding fault with other ministers like Billy Graham (granted he made a mistake once but ever heard of something called “forgiveness or benefit of doubt”). This comes from the master which I realised. You can discern a man by the fruit he produces. If the fruit is extremely proud about the teachings, or association, with less compassion for the lost or suffering- by compassion I mean equal respect, what is the use of that spirituality otherwise. About Zac Poonen, I have had the chance of visiting his church on quiet a few occasions. The congregation is nice to speak with except for few jerks who really over do it. You know the appearance of being holy vs actually being set apart. However his speeches appear to be different from his action. HIs kids have all married Americans and settled there with local citizenship. Life if not super great is definitely not bad but others must be very modest in living. Also people adore him like a god. his speeches seem like god consults him before everything. I found similarity with people who talk about Macarthur. Both these preachers work in sacrosanct environment where if you are part of the fold you behave a particular manner. Its like a travel agent who has reserved seats or rooms in a travel destination but you follow their rules. Its the same way with these- they have reservations in Heaven rest everybody is doomed. I feel bad writing so much about leaders because its not right of me but i felt like sharing my piece of experience. Jesus said it is the sick who need the doctor and not the healthy. His language with Nicodemous was filled with correction but with samaritan woman was with compassion and also the lady who was caught. Can anybody honestly compare these preachers with our Lord and Master Jesus Christ. All who put faith in Christ (most of them) are attracted to the character of Christ who emphasises with us. Who are these middle men- Macarthur, Washer, Poonen? About Piper what I like he still keeps a room for openness where he is not opposed to the view of continuation which is what I like. God is the same yesterday today and forever so Its Him who can still chose to give gifts to man. After all it is about His kingdom and snatching the people from hell fire. What i was not very comfortable with Piper was that he (probably does not like trump) and starts praying that God break Trump – which is good as personal prayer but he went ahead and published it. Now politics is not my concern but I believe thats trying to hide and shoot a bullet. Yet, he is quiet open but I guess he does not believe much in missionary work (same- sacrosanct issue) and harps a lot about how suffering edifies God- it makes more sense if these people have actually suffered in their life and are speaking from experience. – I mean early close family member loss, business failures, being cheated in workplace, losing career, failed marriage, children’s disobedience, etc. Not small things like body pain, or a sickness that gets healed, etc. When one actually faces an untimely loss which cannot be rectified the horror and shock that one goes through is something only which that person who goes through it understands- therefore I feel God is very compassionate in His words about the fatherless and widows. Or orphans. There is no room for people with failed marriages (without judgement- as much as they believe pre-destination is true- its not in one’s hands to just make marriage work at times.) There is no room for under privileged (poor, struggling hard to make ends meet). Besides Americas, Europe and such countries the privileges in countries like mine or third world countries are very limited for people (even in worldly or secular matters like jobs, business, marriages). Its a privilege living and commenting about lifestyle in a place like US. I do not deny importance of holy living. Its vital but not to the extent one turns his back on those suffering, struggling, seeking hope. And what better hope than the one who made us- Our Saviour Jesus Christ. Why become a stumbling block for those who want to believe or believe. This whole process of rewriting the Bible is erroneous. Man should only be guided by the Holy Spirit. God will judge every individual not JMA or Zac Poonen, etc for others. They are becoming mediators with God and yet they cannot pray for one’s well being health. Do you give hope to some one who is suffering by saying things will be better – God is working for you or by saying suffering is your destiny as a Christian forever? I do not deny suffering is part of God’s plan but that is for every individual to chose to accept and stay firm in it not for others to comment on those who are suffering and leave it at that. Its extremely disastrous and disappointing. I believe suffering is a test for two by God- the one who suffers – to test his character and faith and the other person who does not suffer to test his love for his brethren – in that whether he helps the sufferer or not? Same thing with Paul washer. Now about joyce meyer, I am not saying she is accurate as far as Bible is concerned but I have seen her speak kindly of those who suffer. Its her portion to help those who suffer and there by minister to them. I know of members who were ex gangsters who are now ministering in gang areas. Can you expect a john piper or a john macarthur to win souls with gangsters. People should stop hero worshipping preachers. We ought to learn from God’s word with the help of Holy Spirit and its liberating and helpful. The moment we start taking preachers for every advice or message we become slaves and unable to use our mind and more importantly our heart. Also this action of trying to judge speakers which mostly JMA’s disciples do is not right. I know it has its basis in the Bible where a church would review records based on the preachers messages but in today’s age its an act of entertainment not true edification. As much as worship is not complete without praise, love is not complete without an action (kind word, humility, love etc.) and likewise faith. Also Zac Poonen is close to the church of Mormon’s btw I have read somewhere. So is his theology and he was called out in the past by many and he apologised about it. Also another thing- they do not offer holy communion to anybody in their church is not been baptised by them (even if he or she is baptised elsewhere). They insist on marrying within the church and elders actually do a due diligence of salary slips of outsiders if someone is going to get married. . I am not making it up. This i am aware of- its true please check it. It will be worthwhile if you could check that out. Likewise I find people who follow JMA, Paul Washer and Piper (even though I listen to Piper) very much in awe about these preachers (its an entertainment appetite) and less inclined to show compassion to anybody. In my experience I could be wrong but thats what I have. Also I have seen Piper has an inclination towards catholicism (he listens to a musician who is catholic and has comments which seem to be in a little agreement if he would ever meet Pope.) So wow- your website is comes as a surprise a pleasant one. God bless your website and I hope it opens doors for several who are getting lost.

Ramakant Atre
Guest
Ramakant Atre

[DELETED by DTW – note: you said “Have you heard about speaking the truth with love? Or Correcting with Hope that God gives somebody the wisdom.” We asked a simple question in love hoping God will give you the wisdom; He did, but you refuse to listen. The bible is the final authority on all things and we are expected to walk in accordance with God’s commands and Believers need to be on guard against false teachers (Romans 16:17). Listening to Joyce Meyer and enjoying her false teaching is wrong no matter how little you’ve heard, because what starts small ends up big; you give Satan your little finger and soon he has your whole arm…]

Deborah (Discerning the World)
Admin

Dear Ramakant Atre

Thank you for your comment.

You said “I take what helps me. I have trials actually several trials but I take what helps to keep me going.”

So if Satan (but you didn’t know it was Satan, because he sent you one of his “minister of righteousness” (2 Corinthians 11:15)) gave you a book full of great things to help you in all your struggles…are you saying you will accept it and read it because you “take what helps you”?

Have you tried reading the bible, every problem that mankind faces is in there and there is a solution to every problem within the pages of scripture. Wink/

UDay Varma
Guest
UDay Varma

Ramakant Atre wrote:

Dear Sister Deborah. Your website is really very important and a blessing. Quite honestly I have not really watched most programmes of John Macarthur or read his books and like wise the others. Of most of the Christian preachers I do know and have heard who are world renowned were Billy Graham ,Charles Stanley, Chuck Missler, Ravi Zacharias, Carter Conlon and I have admired their speeches. Honestly I am not one who is possibly that theologically sound to comment on who is actually the right one to listen to. I take what helps me. I have trials actually several trials but I take what helps to keep me going. For that matter I like Joyce Meyer (inspite of what people say about her). I will tell you the reason for it. I have come across Macarthur and Zac Poonen through their “disciples”. I have heard about them rather and their attitude or appearance is always ” to appear holy and busy” than actually be holy. I believe Bible stresses the importance of Love (loving neighbour etc.) more than anything else. That was missing in these people’s case. In case of JMA entirely- they would go around yapping theory, nonsense, etc. which may be good to sound but does not literally help anybody. What I noticed was if a person is suffering (for example myself)- there was no room for encouragement, faith upliftment or help. I am not talking about charity. If you recall the conversation of Job and his friends, JMA’s disciples are Job’s friends. Knittpicking, I told you so attitude, trying to be extremely perfect like saying we only read JMA bible etc and finding fault with other ministers like Billy Graham (granted he made a mistake once but ever heard of something called “forgiveness or benefit of doubt”). This comes from the master which I realised. You can discern a man by the fruit he produces. If the fruit is extremely proud about the teachings, or association, with less compassion for the lost or suffering- by compassion I mean equal respect, what is the use of that spirituality otherwise. About Zac Poonen, I have had the chance of visiting his church on quiet a few occasions. The congregation is nice to speak with except for few jerks who really over do it. You know the appearance of being holy vs actually being set apart. However his speeches appear to be different from his action. HIs kids have all married Americans and settled there with local citizenship. Life if not super great is definitely not bad but others must be very modest in living. Also people adore him like a god. his speeches seem like god consults him before everything. I found similarity with people who talk about Macarthur. Both these preachers work in sacrosanct environment where if you are part of the fold you behave a particular manner. Its like a travel agent who has reserved seats or rooms in a travel destination but you follow their rules. Its the same way with these- they have reservations in Heaven rest everybody is doomed. I feel bad writing so much about leaders because its not right of me but i felt like sharing my piece of experience. Jesus said it is the sick who need the doctor and not the healthy. His language with Nicodemous was filled with correction but with samaritan woman was with compassion and also the lady who was caught. Can anybody honestly compare these preachers with our Lord and Master Jesus Christ. All who put faith in Christ (most of them) are attracted to the character of Christ who emphasises with us. Who are these middle men- Macarthur, Washer, Poonen? About Piper what I like he still keeps a room for openness where he is not opposed to the view of continuation which is what I like. God is the same yesterday today and forever so Its Him who can still chose to give gifts to man. After all it is about His kingdom and snatching the people from hell fire. What i was not very comfortable with Piper was that he (probably does not like trump) and starts praying that God break Trump – which is good as personal prayer but he went ahead and published it. Now politics is not my concern but I believe thats trying to hide and shoot a bullet. Yet, he is quiet open but I guess he does not believe much in missionary work (same- sacrosanct issue) and harps a lot about how suffering edifies God- it makes more sense if these people have actually suffered in their life and are speaking from experience. – I mean early close family member loss, business failures, being cheated in workplace, losing career, failed marriage, children’s disobedience, etc. Not small things like body pain, or a sickness that gets healed, etc. When one actually faces an untimely loss which cannot be rectified the horror and shock that one goes through is something only which that person who goes through it understands- therefore I feel God is very compassionate in His words about the fatherless and widows. Or orphans. There is no room for people with failed marriages (without judgement- as much as they believe pre-destination is true- its not in one’s hands to just make marriage work at times.) There is no room for under privileged (poor, struggling hard to make ends meet). Besides Americas, Europe and such countries the privileges in countries like mine or third world countries are very limited for people (even in worldly or secular matters like jobs, business, marriages). Its a privilege living and commenting about lifestyle in a place like US. I do not deny importance of holy living. Its vital but not to the extent one turns his back on those suffering, struggling, seeking hope. And what better hope than the one who made us- Our Saviour Jesus Christ. Why become a stumbling block for those who want to believe or believe. This whole process of rewriting the Bible is erroneous. Man should only be guided by the Holy Spirit. God will judge every individual not JMA or Zac Poonen, etc for others. They are becoming mediators with God and yet they cannot pray for one’s well being health. Do you give hope to some one who is suffering by saying things will be better – God is working for you or by saying suffering is your destiny as a Christian forever? I do not deny suffering is part of God’s plan but that is for every individual to chose to accept and stay firm in it not for others to comment on those who are suffering and leave it at that. Its extremely disastrous and disappointing. I believe suffering is a test for two by God- the one who suffers – to test his character and faith and the other person who does not suffer to test his love for his brethren – in that whether he helps the sufferer or not? Same thing with Paul washer. Now about joyce meyer, I am not saying she is accurate as far as Bible is concerned but I have seen her speak kindly of those who suffer. Its her portion to help those who suffer and there by minister to them. I know of members who were ex gangsters who are now ministering in gang areas. Can you expect a john piper or a john macarthur to win souls with gangsters. People should stop hero worshipping preachers. We ought to learn from God’s word with the help of Holy Spirit and its liberating and helpful. The moment we start taking preachers for every advice or message we become slaves and unable to use our mind and more importantly our heart. Also this action of trying to judge speakers which mostly JMA’s disciples do is not right. I know it has its basis in the Bible where a church would review records based on the preachers messages but in today’s age its an act of entertainment not true edification. As much as worship is not complete without praise, love is not complete without an action (kind word, humility, love etc.) and likewise faith. Also Zac Poonen is close to the church of Mormon’s btw I have read somewhere. So is his theology and he was called out in the past by many and he apologised about it. Also another thing- they do not offer holy communion to anybody in their church is not been baptised by them (even if he or she is baptised elsewhere). They insist on marrying within the church and elders actually do a due diligence of salary slips of outsiders if someone is going to get married. . I am not making it up. This i am aware of- its true please check it. It will be worthwhile if you could check that out. Likewise I find people who follow JMA, Paul Washer and Piper (even though I listen to Piper) very much in awe about these preachers (its an entertainment appetite) and less inclined to show compassion to anybody. In my experience I could be wrong but thats what I have. Also I have seen Piper has an inclination towards catholicism (he listens to a musician who is catholic and has comments which seem to be in a little agreement if he would ever meet Pope.) So wow- your website is comes as a surprise a pleasant one. God bless your website and I hope it opens doors for several who are getting lost.

i know this comes almost 9 months later smile
I go to CFC Bangalore (Br. Zac’s home church). What Ramakant Atre says is not fully correct.
1. Bro. Ramakanth is very accurate when he confesses, “Honestly I am not one who is possibly that theologically sound to comment on who is actually the right one to listen to.”
2. Not sure what he meant when he said, “The congregation is nice to speak with except for few jerks who really over do it.” Over do being nice?
3. Not sure where he heard that brother Zac is close to the Mormon Church. I have not heard about this.
4. There is no insisting that one should marry within the church. Only that one be born again.
5. Not sure where the salary slip thing came from!!
6. the church is filled with testimonies of people who failed and went through different circumstances and how God restored broken lives. Myself included.
7. One thing stressed in the church is that life matters more than right doctrine. In that light, brother Zac has often said that he believes that he would find Mother Teresa far ahead of him in heaven. Because though she got her doctrine (catholic) wrong, her life reflected the life of Christ.
8. How can children settling in the US or for that matter anywhere in the world matter. Brother Zac does not get salary from the church and neither does he get royalties for any of the books he has written. Every resource in the church website (url removed by DTW) is free.
All I can say is, “Come and see”….I will be happy to introduce you to our elders.
By the way all our elders support themselves and do not take any salary from the Church.

UDay Varma
Guest
UDay Varma

[Deleted by DTW – Not going to have you come on here and talk nonsense]

Deborah (Discerning the World)
Admin

Dear UDay Varma

You said “7. One thing stressed in the church is that life matters more than right doctrine. In that light, brother Zac has often said that he believes that he would find Mother Teresa far ahead of him in heaven. Because though she got her doctrine (catholic) wrong, her life reflected the life of Christ.”

REALLY? faint So Bro Zac has one foot firmly planted in the Catholic church. Your doctrine can be totally antichrist but if you live life filled to the brim with good works then off to heaven you go. Wonder if the Dalai Lama will be in Zac’s ‘heaven’ as well?

That says it all. Thanks for that info.