Is S. Michael Houdmann a false teacher?
By S. Michael Houdmann, Got Questions Ministries
It was recently brought to my attention that I have been awarded “false teacher” status by at least two websites. Neither of the sites are worth your attention, so I won’t provide the URLs. Needless to say, these two sites are self-proclaimed “watchdogs” over the Christian community. Anyone who disagrees with them on virtually anything is labeled a false teacher or heretic.
On one of the sites, I was awarded the “Skull and Crossbones” award. Why? I was given the “award” because I teach eternal security / once saved always saved. For the author of the “Skull and Crossbones” site, eternal security is his hobby horse. He sees eternal security as a damnable heresy and essentially believes anyone who teaches eternal security is an unsaved heretic. The man behind this site once challenged me to a debate, and I respectfully declined. The venom and hatred he spews forth would make it impossible to have a respectful and productive discussion. Ultimately, I count my “Skull and Crossbones” award an honor, as I am pleased to be in the same group with most of the other recipients, which includes: John Ankerberg, Tony Evans, Norman Geisler, Billy Graham, D. James Kennedy, Max Lucado, Erwin Lutzer, John MacArthur, Charles Ryrie, Chuck Smith, Charles Stanley, and James White.
The Skull and Crossbones guy’s problem with eternal security is that it, according to him, promotes licentiousness (freedom to sin). His reasoning is that if salvation cannot be lost, there is nothing to motivate us not to sin. This is a tragic misunderstanding of salvation and God’s love. As Christians, our motivations for not sinning are to be: (1) the perfection and sufficiency of Jesus’ sacrifice on our behalf, (2) the wonderful and amazing grace and mercy of God, (3) gratitude for all God has done for us, (4) a love for God that compels us to obey Him and submit to His Word. We fight against sin out of gratitude and love for God because of the perfect and complete salvation He has provided. We do not fight against sin out of fear that God will renege on His promises and condemn us. I am happy to receive the “Skull and Crossbones” award for defending the perfection of Jesus’ sacrifice.
The second site that labels me (and GotQuestions.org) as a false teacher does so for a wide variety of issues. To summarize, I am a heretic because I teach: the Trinity, that repentance from sin is a result of salvation rather than a requirement for salvation, the rapture, and the eternality of hell. Again, just as with the Skull and Crossbones award, if I am to be labeled a heretic for teaching these things, well, I guess I am a heretic.
I am not perfect. I make mistakes. I do not have all the answers. If you were to combine the minds of all 250+ of the GotQuestions.org question answering team, we would still not have all the answers. I fully expect to be “judged more strictly” (James 3:1) at the Judgment Seat of Christ. There are surely some theological/biblical issues on which I do not have a correct or complete understanding. And for that, I humbly ask for, and receive, God’s forgiveness.
Does anyone know where I can get a frame with a bunch of skulls on it, that I can use for my Skull and Crossbones award?
Tags: False-Teaching | Got-Questions? | Personal-Life | Theological-Beliefs