Sunday, June 6, 2021

Refuting Pastor James L. Melton On Repentance

Romans 4:3-7, “For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness. Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt. But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness. Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth righteousness without works, Saying, Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered.”

Kindly, said, Pastor James L. Melton is WRONG on Bible repentance for salvation! I just uploaded this helpful excerpt from Pastor Max Younce exposing John MacArthur and the Lordship Salvation heresy. GOOD STUFF!!! 
What James Melton is teaching is the Devil's lie of CALVINISM! 
  • Roman Catholics teach that salvation is by FAITH PLUS WORKS
  • Calvinists teach that salvation is by FAITH THAT WORKS
  • The Holy Bible teaches that salvation is by FAITH WITHOUT WORKS! (Romans 4:4-6; Ephesians 2:8-9; Titus 3:5). 
What saith the Scripture? Titus 3:5, “Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;I am so sick and tired of hearing these confused pastors, like James Melton and Charles Lawson, teach that it is not a work to require people to turn away from their sins to PROVE that they are saved. Here are Pastor James Melton's own words, so you can see and decide for yourself dear reader. Some of the things he says are true, but some are blatantly false. I will comment afterwards, to refute his false teachings:
THE REPENTANCE INTERVIEW
By far, the most misunderstood and misrepresented position of our ministry is that of Biblical repentance. We believe that literally MILLIONS of people remain lost and will perish in the fires of hell after being led to believe that they were saved as a result of repeating an empty prayer with no Holy Ghost conviction. We call this EMPTY BELIEVISM. This unfortunate reality is due to the fact that thousands of self-professed "soul winners" have very little spiritual discernment and are not following the leadership of the Holy Spirit. They are robotic religious salesmen who produce far more fake converts than genuine converts. The following is a straight-forward approach to making our beliefs clear for anyone who has been misinformed or anyone who just simply needs honest answers. This was first published as a Facebook post in April, 2019, then posted as a standing page on our web site shortly afterwards . . . 
If I (JLM) were to incorporate into one interview many of the questions that I've received from empty believists, the dialog would go something like this . . . 
QUESTION: Do you believe that repentance is only a change of mind?
ANSWER: No, because “only a change of mind” is impossible. If a mind truly changes, then results will follow. If a man really makes up his mind to get out of bed and go to work, then he gets up and goes to work. If he doesn’t, then it’s because he made up his mind to NOT go to work. A "change of mind" isn’t a change of mind unless it’s real with real results. Empty believists like the “change of mind” definition for repentance only because one cannot read another’s mind; therefore, they can get away with calling fake converts “professions of faith,” something that the word of God does NOT call them. 
QUESTION: But doesn’t your wording “results will follow” amount to adding works as a requirement for salvation?
ANSWER: No, because the works are not done in order TO BE saved, but rather as a RESULT of one being saved. Faith without works is dead (James 2:26), and by their fruit ye shall know them (Mat. 7:20). 
QUESTION: But how much fruit should we see before we can rest assured that a man is really saved?
ANSWER: You probably need to ask the Lord about that, since He’s the one who said it, not me. Personally, at first, I am content with seeing some sign of spiritual life that I have not seen before: a Bible question once in a while, a visit to church services, a desire to be baptized, or maybe a concern about sin and holy living. Any of these would indicate the possible presence of a new creature living inside that is beginning to grow. As that growth continues, we should expect to see the fruit of the spirit listed in Galatians 5:22-23. 
QUESTION: And if none of those things ever happen, nor anything else of a spiritual nature, then you believe the person is still lost?
ANSWER: That’s correct. 
QUESTION: But how can you know their heart?
ANSWER: How can YOU reject Matthew 7:20, II Corinthians 5:17, Titus 1:16, Matthew 3:8, Acts 26:20 and James 2:26? The Bible TOLD you how to know their heart (by their fruits, or works), yet you reject this holy standard so you can keep tallying-up false professions and bragging about them to your IFB brethren. 
QUESTION: But aren't you confusing standing with state?
ANSWER: No, I've understood standing and state longer than some of you have been alive. I'm taking both into account, as do the verses that I just referenced. If a man is truly standing in Christ, then there will be some evidence of it in his state. Pretty simple. 
QUESTION: But doesn't that deal more with sanctification than salvation?
ANSWER: I never said it dealt with salvation. I said that fruit will FOLLOW salvation as an EVIDENCE OF salvation. Call it sanctification, or anything you like, but it will follow salvation, if the salvation is real. When "all things" become new (II Cor. 5:17), something will surely be noticed! 
QUESTION: Do you question the motives of those that you term "empty believists"?
ANSWER: I question the motives of some of them, and I question the character and intelligence of most all of them. 
QUESTION: Why would you question their character and intelligence?
ANSWER: The soul of every human being is precious, and each one deserves to be handled with the utmost care and compassion. Empty believists are little more than high-pressure religious salesmen who view souls as mere numbers. I find this despicable, and I question the character of anyone who doesn't find it despicable, regardless of their church size or their social standing with the brethren. As for their intelligence, I have found that a great many of them lack basic reading, comprehension and reasoning skills, at least on any adult level. Whether they were born that way or they became that way, I do not know. I suspect that maybe God took the sound minds of some of them after they rejected His words and chose IFB tradition instead, but I do not know. 
QUESTION: Do you believe they are lost?
ANSWER: Some of them are probably lost, yes, perhaps many of them, but not all, and probably not most. 
QUESTION: If you could have one prayer answered in regards to your "empty believe" opponents, what would it be?
ANSWER: I would ask that everyone GET ALONE by pulling away from their favorite preachers, colleges and camps for a few months and do a lot of personal soul searching, praying and Bible studying at the throne of grace. That's where wisdom is found and genuine Christian men of character are built. I fear that most empty believists know very little about this on a PERSONAL level, and they never will until they overcome their religious peer pressure and become MEN of rock-solid Biblical conviction who know how to stand and fight alone. 
QUESTION: Do you believe that will ever happen?
ANSWER: Sadly, no.
"Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves" - The Lord Jesus Christ, Matthew 23:15

SOURCE: Facebook, James L. Melton, 'The Repentance Interview'

First, Pastor Melton unfortunately hangs himself theologically in the very first question and answer given, by openly denying that repentance means a change of mind. The Greek noun for “repent” is metanoia, which means “a change of mind.” Regarding repentance, Melton is half right. The Devil's most effective lie is the half-truth, because in part it can be defended with incontestable logic. It is true that a change of mind (beyond the meaning of repentance itself) must logically result in some type of action, but that biblical action is to simply BELIEVE the Gospel to be saved, nothing else. The object of repentance is BELIEVING. Pastor Melton errantly says it refers to a change of lifestyle, which is a false plan of salvation. He is wrong on repentance!

In his second question and answer, Pastor Melton quotes James 2:26 (faith without works is dead) and Matthew 7:20 (by their fruit ye shall know them). These Scripture passages speak about being justified in the sight of men, not God. With God we can only be justified BY FAITH (Habakkuk 2:4; Acts 10:43, 13:39; Galatians 3:26). If you have to look at your life to prove that you're saved, it proves that you're not! Eternal life is the free gift of God (Romans 5:15-18, 6:23). The truth is that a believer SHOULD do good works Titus 2:12; not MUST (that is works); not WILL (that is Calvinism). 

The Bible is filled with examples of horrible saints. Lot was a sinful man, who got drunk and impregnanted his two daughters. David stole a man's wife, got her pregnant unintentionally, and then had her husband murdered to cover up his evil. This is the man after God's own heart. We are allowed in the Bible to see their entire life, which only God can see. But if it weren't for the divine spotlight that God gives to us in the Bible, to see their complete lives before, during and after, then we would never know that some of them were even saints. Solomon lives a very sinful life of sexual perversion. Samson chased harlots his entire life! This was God's man (Judges 16:1).

As you read earlier, Pastor Melton examines a professed believer's life, and rejects them as saved, regardless of their profession of faith in Jesus Christ if he doesn't see evidence. The big problem with Melton's ideas is that Satan does imitate the things of God (2nd Corinthians 11:13-15). Anything that an unsaved person can imitate cannot be used as “proof that someone is saved. Can an unsaved person do good works? Yes. Can an unsaved person read the Bible? Yes. Can an unsaved person speak religious lingo? Yes. In fact, an unsaved person can imitate anything a Christian can do, except one thing. An unbeliever does not have the indwelling Holy Spirit of God. 1st John 3:24, And he that keepeth his commandments dwelleth in him, and he in him. And hereby we know that he abideth in us, by the Spirit which he hath given us.

Dear reader, I want to focus now on James Melton's third question and answer, which is very disturbing, and this is really dangerous teaching. Please read it again:
QUESTION: But how much fruit should we see before we can rest assured that a man is really saved?
ANSWER: You probably need to ask the Lord about that, since He’s the one who said it, not me. Personally, at first, I am content with seeing some sign of spiritual life that I have not seen before: a Bible question once in a while, a visit to church services, a desire to be baptized, or maybe a concern about sin and holy living. Any of these would indicate the possible presence of a new creature living inside that is beginning to grow. As that growth continues, we should expect to see the fruit of the spirit listed in Galatians 5:22-23. 
Do you see the really big problem with what he just said? I sure do! According to Pastor Melton's foolish thinking, there is NO DEFINITE POINT at which a person can KNOW that they are saved. He even admits that he cannot answer his own question. Look for yourself at what he says... “You probably need to ask the Lord about that.” Huh? Well then how can anyone ever truly know that they are born-again? If we must have some degree of works evident in our life to know that we're saved, then we can never really KNOW, can we? Melton's Satanic teaching goes 100% contrary to the Word of God, which teaches that every believer CAN KNOW we are saved (1st John 5:13).

Many people misunderstand the Epistle of 1st John. You need to realize that the Lord didn't give us 1st John to become fruit inspectors, so we could go around judging who is saved or lost. The key verse of the epistle is found in 1st John 3:24, And he that keepeth his commandments dwelleth in him, and he in him. And hereby we know that he abideth in us, by the Spirit which he hath given us.Bible students lift verses like 1st John 3:8 out of context, “He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil.” The question is not whether you have sin in your life (we ALL do), the question is do you have the Holy Spirit living inside you? That is a question that only you can determine. I cannot determine if you are saved, and neither can anyone else. Just because a person is living in horrible sin, or incarcerated in prison for their crimes, does not in any way indicate that they are not saved. It just means that they're priorities in life were wrong when they made those bad choices. 

I get people writing to me, wanting to know how to determine if they have the Holy Spirit in them. Friend, if you have believed the Gospel, receiving Christ's sacrifice on the cross as payment for your sins, and you have trusted in the risen Savior, you have the Holy Spirit in you. How do I know that? I know because that is what the Holy Bible teaches! 
Ephesians 1:12-15, “That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ. In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise, Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.”
What a beautiful and power packed passage of Scripture! Do you see the simplicity of salvation dear friend? We get saved by simply TRUSTING JESUS, after we heard THE TRUTH OF THE GOSPEL. That is how you get saved, you simply BELIEVE the truth of the Gospel when you hear it preached. That is how 3,000 people got saved on the Day of Pentecost. Acts 2:41, “Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.” That is why the Apostle Paul said to the Galatian churches in Galatians 3:2, “This only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith? That is so simple. Read how simple it was for Cornelius to get saved in Acts 10:43-44.

The 3,000 souls saved at Pentecost weren't put on probation. There was no monitoring program. I wouldn't be surprised if some of these crazy Lordship Salvation churches require their members to wear ankle bracelets, to monitor their activities to see if they're really saved. Where does this insanity end? All my life I have heard wicked religious people accuse others of NOT BEING SAVED, because of sin in that person's life. I assure you biblically that the greater sin is in the wicked hearts of the people pointing their fingers (Matthew 7:1-5). 1st Timothy 5:24, “Some men's sins are open beforehand, going before to judgment; and some men they follow after.” You are a dirty, guilty and loathsome sinner, just like everybody else! Christ died for ALL men, because we are ALL ungodly sinners (1st John 1:10; Romans 5:6-9).

I cannot warn you enough dear reader to RUN away from the false teachings of James L. Melton on repentance. True repentance is a change of mind that compels a person to BELIEVE the Gospel, period. The life that you choose to live afterwards as a child of God is strictly a matter of sanctification, and not justification. Repentance and faith are inseparable. The man who believes has repented, and the man who repents has believed. 


Dr. John R. Rice Is Right That The Man Who Believes Has Repented

Dr. John R. Rice said it very well:
There are those hyper-dispensationalists who think that John the Baptist preached a different Gospel from Christ when he commanded repentance (Matt. 3:2). But it is the same repentance Jesus commanded in Matthew 4:17, in Luke 13:3 and 5, and the same repentance that Paul preached in Athens that God “now commandeth all men every where to repent” (Acts 17:30 31). Repentance is not a different plan of salvation from having faith: it is part of the same plan of salvation. Or rather repentance is simply another way of describing or looking at the plan of salvation. One who turns from sin to God has done so by trusting in Jesus Christ. A change of mind toward sin is necessarily involved in saving faith.

Everyone who genuinely repented under the preaching of John the Baptist put his trust in the Saviour John the Baptist preached, and was regenerated. There is no such thing as being “a disciple of John the Baptist” in any honest sense without being a disciple of Jesus, that is, without trusting Christ for salvation. [emphasis added]

SOURCE: Evangelist John R. Rice, “Acts: Filled With The Spirit,” pp. 251-252; Sword Of The Lord, Murfreesboro, Tennessee; ©1963
Please don't miss it! I have heard Missionary David W. Cloud and other false teachers, attempt to portray Dr. Rice as a proponent of Lordship Salvation, saying he taught that people must turn away from a lifestyle of sin to be saved. David Cloud even goes as far as to pitch Dr. John R. Rice against his successor Pastor Curtis Hutson (1934-1995). I explain this issue in the preceding hyperlink. Mr. Cloud claims that Curtis Hutson leaves off repentance, thus corrupting the Gospel. Nothing could be further from the truth
Also, please read, Dr. John R. Rice Refutes Lordship Salvation

Granted, I don't agree with Dr. Rice's mention of “turning from sin,” because that language is not found anywhere in the King James Bible. But Dr. Rice makes it plain that the person who BELIEVES has turned from sin. So Dr. Rice clearly DIDN'T think that a person must turn away from sinful behavior to be saved. Nor did Dr. Rice believe that you must clean up your life of sin (reform) to prove that you are saved. Dr. Rice believed that the only way to determine if someone is saved, is by the direct testimony from their mouth concerning Jesus Christ. I fully agree. It is falsehood to examine a person's life to determine if they are saved. A Christian's walk ought to validate their talk (Matthew 5:16), but if it doesn't, only God knows if they are saved or not. Lordship Salvation is of the Devil. Misunderstood Repentance is of the Devil.

To be saved, you must think differently to believe the Good News (i.e., Jesus died on the cross to pay for our sins, He was buried and physically resurrected three days later). We are saved by believing, not by repenting; but repentance makes believing possible. If you didn't change your mind about whatever it is that has been preventing you from believing, then you wouldn't have come to Christ to be forgiven and saved. The only thing you need to change your mind about is whatever has been hindering you from believing.

Unbelief is the only thing that keeps a person from believing. To require that someone commit to turning away from living a lifestyle of sin, has absolutely nothing to do with receiving God's free gift of eternal life. I hope you see that. False teachers like John MacArthur, Steve Pettit, Marty Herron, James White, James L. Melton, Bryan Denlinger, Sam Horn, John Piper, Ray Comfort, Gary Walton, Kirk Cameron and R.C. Sproul, unbiblically require people to forsake a lifestyle of sinning to get saved, or to prove that they are really saved, which is heresy. Salvation is a take proposition, not a give proposition.

Out Baptist churches today are filled with people who are very ecumenical, accepting and bidding Godspeed to all manner of heresy, false teachers, counterfeit Bible versions and other gospels. Sadly, anybody who professes faith alone in Christ alone by grace alone is embraced as being a true Christian; yet many of these so-called “Christians” adhere to a very different plan of salvation than what is clearly taught in the King James Bible. I have just shown you two Baptist churches, whose Statement of Faith add turning away from sins to the Gospel, corrupting the simplicity that is in Christ by faith alone.

Most churches are in denial today. While they insist that salvation is a free gift that cannot be earned, at the same time they also insist that you turn away from sinning to receive it. I can take you to the Mormon, Roman Catholic, Jehovah's Witness, Church of Christ and Seventh-Day Adventist websites to show you where they all insist that salvation is obtained solely by God's grace. Yet, all of these false religions require some form of works for salvation, or to prove that you are really saved by performing works. The Word of God teaches the exact opposite, that a person is saved solely BY FAITH and nothing else is required...
Romans 3:20-26, “Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin. But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference: For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.”
Repeatedly in the Bible we are taught simply to BELIEVE on the only begotten Son of God (John 3:16). Nowhere are we told to repent “of our sins” to be saved. NOWHERE!!! In closing, let me repeat these doctrinally sound words by Evangelist John R. Rice once again. And may I say, the inspired Scriptures are our final and only authority in all doctrinal and moral matters. You'll find those inspired words only in the King James Bible today. Having said that, Dr. Rice gets it 100% correct here, in my humble opinion as a fundamentalist Baptist preacher:
“Repentance is not a different plan of salvation from having faith: it is part of the same plan of salvation. Or rather repentance is simply another way of describing or looking at the plan of salvation. One who turns from sin to God has done so by trusting in Jesus Christ. A change of mind toward sin is necessarily involved in saving faith.” [emphasis added]

SOURCE: Evangelist John R. Rice, “Acts: Filled With The Spirit,” pp. 251-252; Sword Of The Lord, Murfreesboro, Tennessee; ©1963
Repentance is not a separate act from believing, but one and the same. This is the great Bible truth which is woefully lacking in thousands of Baptist churches today, perverting the simple Gospel of free grace. God bless you dear friend, and thank you from my heart for reading this humble sinner's writings. To God alone be the glory!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.

The Beautiful Bible Story Of Onesimus And The Apostle Paul

Philemon 1:9-19,  “ Yet for love's sake I rather beseech thee, being such an one as Paul the aged, and now also a prisoner of Jesus Chri...