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Wednesday
Feb152012

Silencing a Voice for the Gospel

John Loftness is a SGM Board Member and the senior pastor of Solid Rock Church outside of Washington D.C.  He is also the leader who introduced C.J. before his “state of my heart” message at the November 2011 Pastors Conference.  John said:

“The board also thought it was wise and helpful if CJ could receive pastoral care from someone who knew him well and was familiar with all that was going on in Sovereign Grace.  I consider it a great privilege to stand with my friend during this most trying time.  We’ve met often, we’ve talked extensively about his soul his leadership and how to evaluate Sovereign Grace.  So what you are about to hear reflects the content of many, many conversations over the last four months.”

Tragically, those “many, many conversations” produced no contrition and no confession – only self-justification.  Please read “C.J.’s State of His Heart Message – Reflection on Personal Sins.” 

What follows is an excerpt of a recent message by John on Philippians 2:19-30.  I’ve provided comments in blue ink by playing the part of a fictional church member who interacts with his instructions.    

You’ve Got to be Ready to Fight

“If you are a Christian, you’ve got to be ready to fight.  Now we got to make sure that the fights we are engaging in are the one’s God wants us to engage in, okay?  We are not just running around [to] every doctrinal controversy [and] fighting.  There are some sins and conflicts we just overlook.  But when the gospel is at stake we’ve got to be willing to take a stand, and even, and I’m not being dramatic here, okay?  We’ve got to be willing to take a stand and even die for the defense of the gospel.  So are you ready to fight? 

Great Pastor John!   I’m on your side.   Onward Christian soldiers marching unto war!  But pastor, what fight do you want me to fight?  Oh that’s right, a gospel fight!  Okay, count on me but could you be more specific?

“We’ve got to take a stand when a gospel minister comes under attack!  Epaphroditus stood with Paul in his defense before a Roman tribunal and in his resistance of, in [Philippians] chapter 3, the circumcision party.  So I am standing with you.  We’ve got to learn how to do that.  We’ve got to stand together. 

Do you have a particular gospel minister in mind?  I’m thinking your friend, C.J.  Don’t worry pastor, its time I learn to stand together with all my brothers and sisters in SGM.  So I’ll proudly stand with C.J. like Epaphroditus stood with Paul. 

Anyway, C.J. and Paul have a lot in common don’t you think?  Both are extraordinarily gifted.  And neither did anything wrong.  Like Paul said, ‘I have done nothing wrong against the law of the Jews or against the temple or against Caesar.’” (Acts 25:8)  I see your point, that applies to C.J. too.  And those Judaizers are  devils.  May all who undermine C.J.’s ministry “emasculate themselves!” (Gal 5:12)

“One way Satan tries to thwart gospel ministry is through silencing gospel ministers.  And so when you go through the life of Paul he was constantly being attacked because Satan knows if we can take this man who God has given these extraordinarily gifts to, if he can take him out of the world, we get a gospel voice out of the world!  And so he often attacks ministers. We’ve got to be aware that in our day that pastors and preachers will be discredited and attacked.  Sometimes the attacker thinks he is doing it for good reasons, but Satan’s goal in that attack is to silence a voice for the gospel in the world.    

I agree, C.J. has been attacked like Paul.  And Brent Detwiler, what a fool, he actually believes he is raising legitimate concerns.  Idiot!  Really, he is a servant of Satan!  He only wants to discredit C.J. because he hates C.J.  Nothing he says is true.  His accusations are vicious slander.  I know he is trying to get our worldwide gospel voice, C.J., out of the world.        

“So church we got to learn how to fight.  Me too.  And we’ve got to learn how to stand together.”[1]

Darn right!  Like D.C. Mayor Marion Barry once said, “Down with dope!  Up with hope!  In SGM we say, “Down with Detwiler dope.  Up with Mahaney hope!”  United we stand.  Divided we fall.  May God crush Beelzebub under our feet.

Post Script

Dear John…these remain the true motivations of my soul.  This quote is taken from the opening paragraph of my second major document on October 8, 2010.

“I’d like to begin by reiterating why I’ve put such great effort in writing you at length in a “Response Regarding Friendship and Doctrine” (RRF&D) and, now again, in “A Final Appeal” (AFA).  At the risk of sounding sanctimonious, I am genuinely concerned for the glory of God, the propagation of the gospel, the testimony of Sovereign Grace Ministries, the well-being of others, and the good of your soul.  I love you.  I love Sovereign Grace Ministries.  I want the full measure of God’s blessing to rest upon you.”     

 


[1] John Loftness, “Leadership Models - Philippians 2:19-30,” February 5, 2012, minutes 36:44-38:44.

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