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Can I be a Calvinist and be Free Grace?


Can I be a Calvinist

and be

Free Grace?

-Dr. Fred R. Lybrand

Honestly, I get this question a lot. Most Arminians aren’t in our conversations among Free Grace advocates because of their conviction that one can lose his eternal life. Calvinists do affirm the security of the believer, so we are in the same basic conversation. In my book Back to Faith I take Calvinism to task, but only a bit. The confusion around Perseverance (is it that we persevere in works, persevere in faith, or that God perseveres in keeping us safely His children forever?) is the big issue I think some forms of Calvinism fumble over. On the other hand, there is a great debt of gratitude owed to Calvin and the Reformers in my own understanding and tradition.   Am I Free Grace and a Calvinist?

What Makes one a Calvinist?

What really makes one a ‘Calvinist’? I don’t think we’ve done a fair job defining this among ourselves, and as a result we have some of our number at times condemning all things Calvin. Most of the time we say being a Calvinist is all about the ‘5 Points’. In particular the notion is almost ubiquitous that if you believe in one point, then you must believe in all five points because it is a ‘system’—so the argument goes. I don’t believe it is a system, nor do I believe that one must accept all five points (even logically)…I’ll prove it in a minute. Indeed, if I had to be labeled, I’d request that you consider me a 1.5 Arminian!

The following chart is from the Moody Handbook of Theology (p. 490). It involves a little more than the 5 Points, but gets the issue in focus.


Doctrine Arminianism Calvinism


As a result of the Fall, man has inherited a corrupted nature. Prevenient grace has removed the guilt and condemnation of Adam’s sin.

As a result of the Fall, man is totally depraved and dead in sin; he is unable to save himself. Because he is dead in sin, God must initiate salvation.

Imputation of Sin

God did not impute to the entire human race through Adam’s sin, but all people inherit a corrupt nature as a result of Adam’s fall.

Through Adam’s transgression, sin was imputed—passed to the entire race so that all people are born in sin.


God elected those whom He knew would believe of their own free will. Election is conditional, based on man’s response in faith.

God unconditionally, from eternity past, elected some to be saved. Election is not based on man’s future response.


of Christ

Christ died for the entire human race, making all mankind saveable. His death is effective only in those who believe.

God determined that Christ would die for all those whom God elected. Since Christ did not die for everyone but only for those who were elected to be saved, His death is completely successful.


Through prevenient or preparatory grace, which is given to all people, man is able to cooperate with God and respond to Him in salvation. Prevenient grace reverses the effects of Adam’s sin.

Common grace is extended to all mankind but is insufficient to save anyone. Through irresistible grace God drew to Himself those whom He had elected, making them willing to respond.

Will of Man

Prevenient grace is given to all people and is exercised on the entire person, giving man a free will.

Depravity extends to all of man, including his will. Without irresistible grace man’s will remains bound, unable to respond to God on its own ability.


Believers may turn from grace and lose their salvation.

Believers will persevere in the faith. Believers are secure in their salvation; none will be lost.


of God

God limits His control in accordance with man’s freedom and response. His decrees are related to His foreknowledge of what man’s response will be.

God’s sovereignty is absolute and unconditional. He has determined all things according to the good pleasure of His will. His foreknowledge originates in advanced planning, not in advanced information.

There is a good bit of discussion out there about the ‘perseverance point’—whether it is about persevering in good works, persevering in faith (as the Moody Handbook claims), or God persevering in keeping one saved (preservation of the saints). How many of us have read the Canons of Dort of late? I have read the Canons of Dort over and over recently, and I can tell you that:

      1. All three types of ‘perseverance’ are mentioned in the Canons of Dort
      2. The focus of the point concerning perseverance IS the eternal security of the believer (and his assurance).

I know this all sounds a little stuffy and theological, but George Bernard Shaw weighs in here for us:

No man ever believes that the Bible means what it says: He is always convinced that it says what he means.

The Bible is what matters not any particular theological system. Theological systems are great when they match the Word because they help us make sense, remember, and expand what we observe. But, why is Dort the definition of Calvinism? Personally, I think it just turns out to be a rhetorical stronghold.

Here are a few facts to consider:

      1. The Canons of Dort was a RESPONSE to the Five Articles of the Remonstrance
      2. It was a localized debate in Holland (hence TULIP ?)
      3. It was authored 55 years after Calvin’s death
      4. There are other statements like Heidelberg and Westminster, and many other variations of Calvinism (please read Spurgeon & Hyper-Calvinism by Iain H. Murray).

What is a Calvinist? In the Evangelical Dictionary of Theology (ed. Walter Elwell), Calvinism is defined by the three tenants of

      • Sola Scriptura (Scripture alone)
      • Soli Deo gloria (God’s glory alone)
      • Sola fidei (Faith alone)

The EDT article goes on to admit the variation and development of theological thought in Calvinism. It is clearly the Reformed faith, but Covenant-Reformed like Covenant-Calvinism, is a branch or variation of Calvinism. In our day, a few popular leaders have taken the rhetorical road of claiming that they alone are the true Calvinists…and…if you ain’t a 5 Pointer, you ain’t a real Calvinist (B.B. Warfield would call non-5 pointers ‘bad’ Calvinists; others would call them ‘inconsistent’ Calvinists).

So why all the fuss? The reason is pretty simple— Free Grace folks have gotten immersed in the frayed rhetoric. The concern is that we can inadvertently come across as ‘banishing’ those who belong with us. The fears we have are not based on the real nature of things. Yes, you can be a Calvinist and be a Free Grace advocate (I think I’m one)! As to being a semi-Arminian or 5-Point-Covenant-Reformed person and being Free Grace, well that’s a different article. If you are a Hyper-Calvinist or a Hyper-Arminian, then you won’t want to join with us.

It is the Covenant of the FGA that guides our membership. Quite frankly (as Dr. Zuck wrote me) it is a very well-crafted statement of our basic view. There is nothing in it that excludes a person who has Calvinistic convictions.

How to Kill the Argument

I’d like to finally kill the argument — ‘if you buy one point you must buy all 5’ — that seems to be accepted as a given in many circles. I could walk through the logic of it and display why the nature of the atonement and eternal security are not necessarily what follows from the other points; but I can do something better. I can show you how almost no Free Grace person really believes that the 5 Points of Calvinism lead to the misunderstanding of Lordship Salvation. That is actually the real issue. I’ll lay it out in a sequence:

      1. If the 5 points of Calvinism (Canons of Dort) are a system and must be believed together
      2. Then the 5 points of Arminianism (Remonstrance) are a system and must be believed together as well. This is particularly true because the Canons of Dort was developed as a REACTION TO the Remonstrance.
      3. So, if one believes one point of Arminiansim, then he must believe all 5 points.
      4. Many Free Grace advocates affirm Unlimited Atonement (Christ died for all and not just for the elect)
      5. Therefore, they (#4) must also believe in falling from grace (losing one’s salvation / eternal life) as one of the points of Arminianism.

Said differently, I know lots of Free Grace folks who believe in Unlimited Atonement AND who believe in eternal security. They are, in effect, 1 Point Arminians (at least). The claimed logical connection is bogus. All systems are ‘logical’—but there are additional aspects to logic, such as the issue of whether or not a premise is true or whether the chain of logic really follows.

Of course you can be a Calvinist and be Free Grace, but certain kinds of Calvinists are definitely not Free grace. Of course you can be basically Arminian and be Free Grace (but you must reject the idea of ‘losing your salvation’).

Our views and our systems are always struggling—we are trying to answer the most questions while raising the fewest problems. To be Free Grace, the issue isn’t about our theological systems as much as it is THE GOSPEL. Some systems make keeping the gospel clear an easy thing, while others make it quite a challenge.

Here is the basic FGA Covenant…which isn’t about Calvin or Arminius, but rather it is about the word of grace:

As members of the Evangelical Tradition, we affirm the Bible alone, and the Bible in its entirety, is the inspired Word of God and is therefore inerrant in the autographs. Furthermore, God is a Trinity, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, each an uncreated person, one in essence, equal in power and glory. As members of this tradition, we are concerned about the clear understanding, presentation, and advancement of the Gospel of God’s Free Grace.

We affirm the following:

  1. The Grace of God in justification is an unconditional free gift.
  2. The sole means of receiving the free gift of eternal life is faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, whose substitutionary death on the cross fully satisfied the requirement for our justification.
  3. Faith is a personal response, apart from our works, whereby we are persuaded that the finished work of Jesus Christ has delivered us from condemnation and guaranteed our eternal life.
  4. Justification is the act of God to declare us righteous when we believe in Jesus Christ alone.
  5. Assurance of justification is the birthright of every believer from the moment of faith in Jesus Christ, and is founded upon the testimony of God in His written Word.
  6. Spiritual growth, which is distinct from justification, is God’s expectation for every believer; this growth, however, is not necessarily manifested uniformly in every believer.
  7. The Gospel of Grace should always be presented with such clarity and simplicity that no impression is left that justification requires any step, response, or action in addition to faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.

FGA Covenant:

In agreement with these affirmations, we covenant to work together graciously and enthusiastically to advance this Gospel of Grace, and to communicate with a positive and gracious tone toward all others, both inside and outside the Free Grace Alliance.

As an added point, John Nelson Darby, the ‘father’ of dispensational theology was a proponent of many Calvanistic beliefs…

Darby defended Calvinist doctrines when they came under attack from within the Church in which he once served. His biographer Goddard states, “Darby indicates his approval of the doctrine of the Anglican Church as expressed in Article XVII of the Thirty-Nine Articles” on the subject of election and predestination. Darby said:

“For my own part, I soberly think Article XVII to be as wise, perhaps I might say the wisest and best condensed human statement of the view it contains that I am acquainted with. I am fully content to take it in its literal and grammatical sense. I believe that predestination to life is the eternal purpose of God, by which, before the foundations of the world were laid, He firmly decreed, by His counsel secret to us, to deliver from curse and destruction those whom He had chosen in Christ out of the human race, and to bring them, through Christ, as vessels made to honour, to eternal salvation.” [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Nelson_Darby]

Millard J. Erickson in his Christian Theology (Volume II, p. 835), as he analyzes the extent of the Atonement, weighs in on the reality of Calvinism subject to modification (or moderation)—

The view that we are adopting here should not be construed as Arminianism. It is rather the most moderate form of Calvinism or; as some would term it, a modification of Calvinism.

Let’s keep perspective and united with all who affirm faith alone in Christ alone according to our FGA Covenant as a reflection of God’s Word. Can you be a Calvinist and be Free Grace? Of course, but labels often complicate the conversation. Yet, denying one’s clear Arminian or Calvinistic bent tends to confuse things all the more; no matter our wish, much of the conversation has been had for eons and we remain in the flow of it.

Pick your label or deny your label; but do you affirm faith alone in Christ alone—communicating this alone? Then join us in the good fight.

Grace and Truth,

Fred Lybrand

Former FGA President (2008/2009)




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John Piper’s Leave of Absence — Is It the Logical Result of His Theology?

First, allow me to share my own empathy for John Piper and the struggles he alludes to (see: http://bit.ly/aTDmGg) as he takes a leave of absence from the ministry (altogether, including writing).

Having just recently retired from the pastorate, I know the strain on the soul and the family.  I suppose I should add a lecture on how abusive most churches are of the pastor’s time, life, and energies…perhaps another day.

In the meantime, I want to offer a possibility for our own lives.  Last year I released a book called Back to Faith, which explores and analyzes the mistaken assumptions about works proving faith.  John Piper’s writings were my example; in fact, an entire chapter was dedicated to him alone.  I also must add here (and you’ll see it if you get a copy of Back to Faith) that I affirm John Piper’s accuracy on the gospel…he clearly affirms faith alone in Christ alone.  On the other hand, he has an incongruity in play.

In the straightest of terms, John Piper believes that we can look at our works (or those of other people) and conclude something about our faith in Christ for our destiny.

If that is true…then fine…except, what if your works don’t match up?  In Piper’s thinking it should call your salvation into question.  Now, that seem quite despair-growing.  So, here is John Piper (in a classy and self-effacing way) looking at his faltering works and feeling grieved.  The grief, however, is much more than sadness…if Piper is true to his theology, he can’t really be sure about his eternal salvation.  Wouldn’t you need a leave of absence if you were haunted about your eternal destiny, and served as a pastor in a church?  It would be easy to misunderstand me here and think I’m psycho-analyzing John Piper; I am not at all.  I am saying, however, that one piece of his theology really does exactly match the nature of his open admissions and struggles over the past year or two.

Here are a few quotes of his from What Jesus Demands from the World [I discuss this in Back to Faith].

Sometimes I am asked whether my understanding
of Jesus implies that divorce is the unforgivable sin.
The answer is no. Jesus said that his blood will be
the basis for the forgiveness of all sins…
From these wonderful promises we learn
that forgiveness of sins is available on the basis of
the shed blood of Jesus. Forgiveness is available
for all sins, without exception. Forgiveness is
received freely through trusting Jesus to forgive our
sins. (What Jesus Demands from the World, 68)

So clearly Piper gets the importance of looking at the shed blood of Christ, which is awesome.

The only unforgivable sin is the sin that we refuse
to confess and forsake. We commit unforgivable
sin when we cleave to a sin so long and so
tenaciously that we can no longer confess it as sin
and turn from it. (What Jesus Demands from the World, 69)

Now, we are seeing a misstep here.  The tendency with this incongruent piece of theology (works prove saving faith), all we can do is see our sin as unforgivable if it keeps showing up (even on occasion)…and if unforgivable, then you remain unforgiven.  Piper knows it’s a problem because he addresses it on occasion.  The issue will always come back to whether we are looking at Jesus or looking at our works.

Here’s a full statement from Back to Faith (Piper is in bold),

In fairness to Piper, he would completely deny the
incongruence, though he seems to realize others are concerned
about it

Some readers will see this stress on the necessity of
a change in obedience to Christ as ‘justification by
works.’ But that would be a misinterpretation of
what I am saying. That is why I wrote chapter 4
and put it near the front of this book,

“Brothers, Live and Preach Justification by Faith.” Obedience
is the evidence of faith that alone unites us to Christ
who is our justifying righteousness. Nothing I have
said here contradicts that truth.

Making the claim that one is misinterpreted is different from being
misinterpreted. It does not seem to have dawned on Piper that he
really may be communicating something scarily similar to
“justification by works” when he claims “obedience is the
evidence of faith…” It seems his theme is that one can tell true
faith (salvation) in an individual because of obedience, but Piper
again displays his incongruity,

It does imply that one can be called a ‘brother’ on
the basis of appearances but in the end prove not to
be a brother because of failing to persevere in the
end. (Back to Faith, 219)

I wouldn’t label John Piper’s theology as evil or bad, but it does have a harmful incongruency that haunts all Hyper-Calvinists (not all Calvinists).

If your works prove you have faith,

and your works are inconsistent or weak,

then…you MAY NOT (probably don’t) have faith.

I don’t know the intricacies of John Piper’s life and issues.  I’ll pray for his leave of absence.  I do know that if I look at my works, I lose assurance…and…when I look at Christ alone I am greatly assured.   What else can you do with something so wonderfully clear?

Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.

Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God. (Romans 5:1–2) ESV

Fred Lybrand

P.S. Yes, I sent John a copy of Back to Faith (which he graciously had acknowledged to me).

Listen to a more detailed explanation of some of these matters at: https://www.backtofaith.com/LISTEN.html

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FAITH ALONE OR NOT…are you one of those awful Antinomians?

What a big issue!

The Gospel, is it (?) —

Faith + Nothing

Faith + Works

Faith (that Works) + Nothing

The reason this is a big deal is that it (a) Will affect how we explain / offer the gospel to others; and, (b) Undermine our assurance as believers in Jesus Christ.

If you tell folks they must add works to their faith, then please know you do not believe in faith alone.  This has been the mainstay and understanding of Bible believing Christians since the Reformation, however, the debate has has raged since then about what to do with works.  Normally there is an incongruence in operation where it sounds like ‘faith alone’ at time, and like ‘faith + works’ at other times.

I think it is simple, but largely unrecognized:

Works have nothing to do with our salvation, but much to do with our sanctification (spiritual growth). Normally in the discussions those who disagree start throwing out labels such as “antinomianism”.  Antinomianism has been used as throughout history as an inflammatory charge.  The funny thing is that it has been used by Roman Catholics against the Reformers, by the Reformers against Evangelicals, and even Arminians against Evangelicals.

If you don’t know all these groups and terms don’t worry about it.  Antinomianism simply means ‘against law’ and nothing more.  So, any group which is against your group’s ‘law’ is antinomian to you.  I really am fond of A.W. Tozer (who did not believe in the eternal security of Christians), but he misses it here:

“Fundamental Christianity in our times is deeply influenced by that ancient enemy of righteousness, Antinomianism. The creed of the Antinomian is easily stated: We are saved by faith alone; works have no place in salvation; conduct is works, and is therefore of no importance. What we do cannot matter as long as we believe rightly. The divorce between creed and conduct is absolute and final. The question of sin is settled by the Cross; conduct is outside the circle of faith and cannot come between the believer and God. Such in brief, is the teaching of the Antinomian. And so fully has it permeated the Fundamental element in modern Christianity that it is accepted by the religious masses as the very truth of God. Antinomianism is the doctrine of grace carried by uncorrected logic to the point of absurdity. It takes the teaching of justification by faith and twists it into deformity.” (from Paths to Power)

In other words, Tozer offers that it is WRONG to say, ‘We are saved by faith alone; works have no place.”  but that is exactly what Romans 4, Romans 11:6,29,  and Ephesians 2:8&9) says (please read them yourself).  Yet, simply put, if you look at your works rather than Christ, then you will doubt because your works will always be flawed.  Looking at Christ alone (l00k = believe here), will always lead to assurance because of His promise (see John 3:16, 5:24).

So what do we do with being called ‘antinomian’ in the debate?  Well I’ve suggested one solution as promoting our belief in Lordship Sanctification; however, there is another option.  We can simply be against antinomianism, and pass it along as belonging to the the universalists (the ones who believe everyone is accepted by God with out regard to faith or works) where it belongs!

Another option is to explain what we really believe.  I offer a fresh term called Necranomian.  Necranomian means one is ‘dead to the law’ (see Romans 7 and 2 Corinthians 3) not ‘aganst’ the law.

I’ve explained this more completely in an appendix of Back to Faith (go get a copy).

In the meantime, it really is Faith Alone in Christ Alone.  Please don’t drift.  The truth is that our growth relates to works, but our acceptence and forgivenss comes through simple faith in Jesus Christ.


Fred Lybrand

P.S.  Here’s the Appendix on Antinomianism from Back To Faith (c) Fred R. Lybrand :  Is This Antinomianism?



This is an article I wrote this week for the Free Grace Alliance.  I’d love your thoughts!

Fred Lybrand


Have you ever noticed how busy everyone is with getting words just right?  It turns out to be more than political correctness, it is really an issue of communication.  You may not have thought about it this way, but language is actually the most ‘democratic’ thing on the planet.  The use of words actually determines their meanings; and, of course, the use of words in a particular context determines THAT meaning.  If I tell you I love my wife, my dog, and my Kindle, then surely you can make out the different nuances.

More to our common faith, it has become a recent trend to refer to oneself as a “Christ-Follower” rather than a Christian.  The reason for this shift is that the word ‘Christian’ has fallen on hard time and doesn’t communicate the right meaning internationally or practically.  ‘Fundamentalist’ (in the faith) has fallen under the same spell of disrepute because it has been associated with certain militaristic ‘Christian’ sub-strata, as well as ‘Islamic Fundamentalism’.  So do we change words or keep working on the proper use of the terms?  Democrats and Republicans have been two groups whose names have fallen on hard times in the back-and-forth nature of popularity.  They just keep working at redefining their name.

The Context

I’ll leave it to you to solve such matters.  My concern here is with the Gospel of Grace.  The debate between Lordship Salvation and Free Grace has been muddling along for the better part of 100 years in noticeable ways.  Here’s an example that predates John MacArthur’s entrance into the foray with The Gospel According to Jesus in 1986.  A.W. Tozer in The Root of the Righteous (Wingspread Publishers, © 1955, 1986), says

There can be no spiritual regeneration till there has been moral reformation.  That this statement requires defense only proves how far from the truth we have strayed.  In our current popular theology pardon depends on faith alone.

Unfortunately, Tozer is saying exactly what he sounds like he’s saying.  For Tozer, salvation is conditioned on a commitment to reform and not faith alone.  All of this is tied up in confusing the relationship between faith and works (see Back to Faith by Fred R. Lybrand for a  thorough discussion of this matter), so Tozer can also, at times, affirm the doctrine of ‘faith alone’ as well.  Kevin Butcher pointed out the real issue back in 1989 when he asserted that the Lordship Salvation side doesn’t represent the Free Grace side’s view of the gospel accurately.  He said,

MacArthur’s first error involves a problem of perception—he doesn’t clearly understand the other view. He does well when he states his own position, describing “Lordship Salvation” as a gospel that requires a faith that commits all (cf. pp. 169ff), a repentance that gives up sin (cf. pp. 159ff) and a submission to the “mastership of Christ” (cf. pp. 203ff) before eternal life is apprehended. The Lordship gospel, according to MacArthur, speaks of a “salvation that is a gift, yet costs everything” (cf. p. 140). But the “other” view which might be referred to as the “Free Grace” Gospel is misrepresented on several counts. (Journal of the Grace Evangelical Society, Spring1989 —Volume 2:1)

The issue is rather simple:

The Lordship Salvation View: One (or many) things are required of the one desiring eternal salvation.  These things largely have to do with a commitment on the part of the seeker to pursue life-change through an abandonment of all desires, possessions, lifestyle, and choice to the Lordship of Jesus Christ.

The Free Grace Salvation View:  There are no requirements for the one desiring eternal salvation.  The ‘requirement’ is that which attends the acceptance of any gift; a willingness to accept it.  In the Free Grace View this willingness to accept is found in the phrase ‘faith alone in Christ alone’.  While the content of what is to be believed is occasionally debated,  the essential idea is that one is saved eternally by believing in Christ’s promise of eternal life for those who believe in Him.  I understand this ‘believe in Him’ have to do with the basics of His person and work, especially his dying and being raised again on our behalf.

What is missed in the debate is that Lordship Salvation proponents affirm they believe in ‘faith alone in Christ alone’ and Free Grace proponents affirm they believe in the Lordship of Christ.  I sit in the curious spot of honestly believing that the Lordship Salvation proponents really do believe in ‘faith alone in Christ alone’, and often share the message properly.  Of course, I also believe they often muddle their communication and make the gospel sound as though much more is required than faith in Christ.  I have concluded that their ‘muddling’ of the issue comes from a fundamental incongruence in their theology and thinking.  While affirming a distinction between justification (being eternally saved) and sanctification (growing spiritually to match the image and character of Christ), they also deny the distinction by affirming that believer = disciple [see Back to Faith, Xulon Press, 2009].

The topic especially becomes an issue when it gets down to sharing the gospel.  The Lordship Salvation proponents accuse the Free Grace proponents of not emphasizing the ‘lordship’ of Christ in our presentation, hence misleading people from what God requires for their eternal destiny.  The Free Grace proponents accuse the Lordship Salvation proponents of ‘adding’ to faith in such a way that the individual is not trusting in Christ, but rather in oneself (or other things) for his eternal destiny.

The Appeal

I really want to appeal to those on the Lordship Salvation side to clarify the issue we Free Grace advocates wrestle with concerning presenting a gospel with various conditions attached to faith alone in Christ alone.  However, for our part, I want to propose a fresh way to explain our view.  It uses words to force a re-thinking of what Free Grace advocates are saying.  Here’s the term,


I believe in Lordship Sanctification, and in my 24 years of ministry I have advocated individuals abandoning themselves to the Lord.  I have begged believers to completely bring their will, desires, and possessions under Jesus Christ, the Son of God, as the Lord of their lives.  I personally and deeply believe Lordship is crucial for the one who has faith in Christ.  In no sense would I ever be against Christ as Lord.  However, I do believe that this call is directed at those who have believed (see Romans 12:1-2) already.

If this understanding of Christ’s Lordship makes sense for our growth in the Lord, then the term Lordship Sanctification turns out to be a very clarifying phrase.  I believe in acknowledging Christ’s Lordship as a necessary part of the sanctification process.  I believe that in order to continue growing in the Lord, one must, in the course of time, yield utterly to the divine oversight of Jesus Christ regarding his life and conformity to the Image of Christ (see Romans 8:28-29).

There is also one great advantage in the debate over the gospel with the use of the term Lordship Sanctification; Free Grace proponents can never again be accused by the Lordship Salvation proponents of not preaching the gospel.  Frankly, if you preach Lordship as an important aspect of ones spiritual growth in Christ, then you can only be accused of being ‘slow’, never of being wrong!  They at least must admit that ‘finally’ we get around to sharing a saving message (in their estimation).

I believe in Free Grace Salvation and Lordship Sanctification.  My appeal to everyone who acknowledges himself as promoters of grace— please begin to refer to Lordship Sanctification often in your preaching, teaching, and mentoring.  If we could infuse this term into the discussion, I am confident that a new age of conversation and clarification can arise.  I believe in Lordship Sanctification as I hope you do as well, and I always get around to explaining it.  However, with one seeking forgiveness, hope, and eternity— I always begin with the good news that Christ died for you and if you will believe in Him you’ll have everlasting life, just as He promised.  In the gospel, the word is FAITH.  In spiritual growth, the word is LORDSHIP.  Let’s grow united in our clarity and in our communication.  Eternal salvation is by faith alone in Christ alone, while progress in sanctification inevitably leads to abandoning oneself to the Lord of Glory.

Grace and peace,
Fred R. Lybrand


To print a copy of this article click on this link: http://www.freegracealliance.com/pdf/LordshipSanctification.pdf