A.W. Tozer on the JSOC and Outer Darkness

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by BrianReimer, Jul 28, 2007.

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  1. BrianReimer

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    From Kingdom Alert as published by Pastor Joey Faust.

    A.W. TOZER ON THE JUDGMENT SEAT OF CHRIST AND OUTER DARKNESS

    ==========================================================

    Aiden Wilson Tozer (1897-1963) was a man of powerful, spiritual insight. I have often quoted his reproofs and warnings in regard to entertainment. I was unaware, until recently, of Tozer's understanding concerning Christian accountability. He not only understood these truths; he warned that they were being minimized or deleted from much of modern, "fundamental" theology. I had known that Tozer was a leader in the Christian and Missionary Alliance, and that Paul Rader was a past president of this denomination. I knew that it was reasonable to conclude that Tozer would share the accountability views of Paul Rader, who had written:

    "Everything that has to do with the thousand years must meet the most terrific fires of testing. Only that which can pass through the fire test at the Judgment Seat can be admitted into this thousand years of Millennial splendour."
    (Paul Rader)

    Yet, until now, I had not been able to find any warnings such as Rader's in Tozer's writings. I pray the following excerpts of Tozer's sermon will stir you to boldly believe the warnings in the Bible, and to move with fear to race for the prize!

    OUR ACCOUNTABILITY TO GOD: JUSTIFIED, SAVED - BUT ON TRIAL (By A.W. Tozer)

    "1 Peter 4:17 For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?

    Throughout the Christian church as we know it today, all sense of accountability to God seems to have been lost...Someone has been quoted recently as saying, 'If I believed that I had to give an accounting of my service as seen in the eyes of God, I could never be happy!'...Now, I do not know how men and women can excuse themselves completely as though one of the voices of God sounding throughout the earth is not the voice of judgment. I have searched the Word again for this message, and I have not been able to get away from the fact of judgment as it pertains to the house of God, to Christians rather than sinners.

    It is well for us to consider here that church history shows plainly that religious people are prone to select a favorite Bible doctrine or truth and to hold to that one truth at the expense of other basic tenets. We may overemphasize that one truth so as to obscure other important truths which may actually disappear as a result. This is what I mean by a truth disappearing - it falls into disuse and therefore is easily forgotten...

    Then, finally, some prophet of God has to come and reassert the forgotten truths and reemphasize and trumpet them forth. That person may be considered a heretic because that segment of Bible truth has been obscured for a generation or two. But in the midst of the grumbling, the prophet of God keeps persisting until the church awakens, readopts that truth, so that a new sense of life comes as it were raised from the dead.

    ...Men who have been used of God in any generation from Calvary down to this hour have not invented and preached new truths. They have simply had the anointed vision to discover truths that had been obscured by the overemphasis of certain other truths. Now, that is introductory to say this: that justification by faith has become such a doctrine in our time. It has been emphasized to a point where it has obscured certain other closely related truths; so we have lost the cutting power of those truths.

    I know it would be difficult for any man to be eloquent enough to overstate the vital importance of justification by faith...that man shall live by his faith and not by works of righteousness which he has done. Therefore, being justified by faith we have peace with God! Justification by faith delivers us from the fruitless struggle to be good. It delivers us from the bondage of the Pharisees and the pride of the ritualist and the snare of the legalist - all of whom attempt in many human ways to make themselves presentable to God. But those are just old Adam decking himself out in his best religious garments for the sake of impressing God Almighty.

    ...Then along came a thoughtful scholar in the Scriptures. He presented no new truth or doctrine, but insisted on the reexamination of an old Bible truth, long buried and forgotten, proclaiming that it is not by our works of righteousness, but it is by faith through grace, that we can be pleasing to God.

    ...Then, with the passing of the years, that doctrine of justification by faith has been emphasized until it has been thrown out of focus as badly as was the opposite before Luther's time.

    As a result, justification as it is now understood and preached and emphasized and hammered on up and down the country, is causing believers to throw all responsibility over on God, and we conceive ourselves to be happy, satisfied Christians without a responsibility in the world except to give out a tract once in a while...All judgment has been bypassed, for Christians are not thinking of judgment any more.

    I discover that the average Christian now seems to have only one worry - he is concerned that he might lose what we call 'fellowship.' In that case, he might not be as happy tomorrow as he was today or as happy day after tomorrow as he was yesterday. He wants to be a happy little moron, with the result that he says, 'I must learn to keep up my fellowship so I will be happy.'

    The idea that a believer is accountable to God for the deeds done in the body has completely passed out of the theological thinking of the modern fundamentalist church...There is no longer any consideration of the moral condition of the man, whether or not he is obedient, whether or not he is faithful to God or what kind of Christian he is.

    ...Now this kind of teaching has obscured other truth, so it is a true doctrine pushed out of focus. It is a doctrine of grace and justification by faith alone pushed by uncorrected logic to a ridiculous and grotesque conclusion.

    The Bible truth that has been obscured and buried and forgotten as a result, is the doctrine of probation. We seldom hear anything about it any more and a man who wants to consider it and talk about it and turn back to the Bible teaching is made to feel very much like a heretic.

    Let us consider what we mean by our Christian lives here being a probationary period. We mean that this life is a preparation for the next and that preparation is not concluded when we come to the Lord Jesus Christ for our salvation.

    ...That is why I have said that it is possible to emphasize a good doctrine to the point that it may overshadow and cause another truth to disappear. In this case, it has gone so far that leading teachers now take the position that the doctrine of probation and spiritual preparation is not Biblical. They insist that everything is cared for by one act of faith and there is no such thing as an expectation of judgment to come.


    Continued...
     
    #1 BrianReimer, Jul 28, 2007
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  2. BrianReimer

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    ...
    Certainly we are all agreed that faith in Jesus has settled many important things forever...Our faith in Christ has settled forever our justification before the Father in heaven. It has settled forever that our names are written in the Lamb's book of life. It has settled forever that we are regenerated men and women and the seed of God is in us.

    ...But the great mistake in our day is the total disregard for the fact that believing Christians are on probation from day to day, proving the character of our faith and testing and preparing us for the world to come...The Apostle Paul plainly taught the believers in Rome that 'every one of us shall give an account of himself to God.' He wrote to the Corinthian believers that 'every man's work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire, and the fire shall try every man's work.'

    The quality of our Christian life is sure to be affected if we do not feel that we are going to give an account to God of how we have used our time and abilities and money and possessions He has entrusted to us.

    ...The results of this time of testing will be seen in that great and coming day before the judgment seat of Christ. Someone has written that the Apostle Paul surely lived with one eye on the judgment seat of Christ and the other eye on the perishing world.

    Every Christian is saved - but many have forgotten that they are still on trial. They have forgotten that the Bible has much to say about that 'great day' when every man's work shall be made manifest. They are so happy that they are saved that they have forgotten that God is testing moral wisdom and moral courage, testing faithfulness and vision and stewardship for the kind of times in which we live.

    We could spend hours describing the dark side of the times in which we live - but I would remind you that they are God's gift to us. We know that crime and corruption are found throughout the nation. We know that many conditions make our country a top-heavy country, and that we could come crashing down as other nations and empires have in the past.

    But I do not wish myself in any other period of the world's history. These times are God Almighty's gift to me as a Christian and I consider myself on probation, sensing that God is really interested in what one of the least of His servants is going to do about the times in which he lives.

    Justified and saved - but on trial: that is where the Christian should hold himself. But we are so eager to get out from under all responsibility we kick up our irresponsible heels like an unbroken colt and snort our defiance of all judgment.

    We are not living in a period of God's expressed judgment at this time, and that is why man thinks he can get away with almost everything now...But this is a period of probation...This period in which we live is not the trial - it is the preparation for the trial. This is not the last examination - this is getting ready for the examination.

    I remind you that this whole doctrine has been long obscured, but our Lord Jesus set it forth fully in Matthew 25. Jesus tells the story there of the man who went into a far country and before leaving, called in his three servants. He gave them talents to be held in trust during his absence...Then he said, 'I will be coming back - remember that I have delivered unto you my goods'...Consider that while he was gone they could have done just as they pleased. They could have done what they pleased with the responsibility. But two of them realized that they were actually on probation while the third did not...The master said to the first two, 'You have been faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many.' The third servant, who did not realize that he would actually be on trial during the master's absence, was cast out as an unprofitable servant.

    What are you going to do with that passage? I know the ultra-dispensationalist just gets rid of it by saying, 'Matthew does not belong to us in the church.' Well, I would just as soon believe the modernist when he says Isaiah does not belong to us as to believe the dispensationalist who tells us that Matthew does not belong to us.

    ...How can we argue that our day-by-day service to God and to our fellow men is not being sharply scrutinized and that it will not be severely judged before the feet of Jesus Christ in that great day?...Brethren, there will be no place to hide then. You tried to settle everything in the spiritual life by one act of believing but there are some things that are never settled until death cuts us off or until the Lord comes..."

    ******************
    COMMENTS
    ******************
    Tozer must now be added to the growing list of courageous, insightful Christians that the Lord used to warn His people about the world to come and the judgment that precedes it. Men such as W.F. Roadhouse, I.M. Haldemane, R.E. Neighbor, D.M. Panton, Oswald J. Smith, Watchman Nee, R.T. Ketcham, and others in the 20th century were able to see that even most of the "fundamentalist" Christians had fallen into a dangerous denial concerning the Judgment Seat of Christ and the Millennial Kingdom (world to come). I agree with Tozer, that salvation by grace through faith alone has been taught in a manner that obscures the Judgment Seat of Christ. However, I would add that by obscuring the warnings as applicable to the saints, many teachers gradually perverted the freeness of eternal salvation. Therefore, we are in such a sad state today that multitudes of professing Christians believe that the Millennial Kingdom is absolutely free, by grace, through faith alone, but that assurance of eternal salvation is gained by long years of struggling in "hard believism," hoping that one day "it will stick" and that they will "really mean it." Such "Christians" will madly proclaim with a red face that there is now no judgment to come, and that they can sin without stripes or exclusion at the Judgment Seat of Christ. Yet, they will then argue that eternal salvation is gained through keeping God's commandments (as long as you do not call keeping God's commandments "works"). Therefore, what God says is a prize, they now see as a free gift. And what God says is a free gift, they now define as a prize! Only the Devil can sow such tares of madness among God's people. Who will awake in the face of the warnings?


    **************************
    CONTACT INFORMATION
    **************************
    Kingdom Baptist Church
    700 Cordes Dr.
    Venus, TX 76084

    http://www.kingdombaptist.org
    [email protected]
     
  3. Rufus_1611

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    This is a remarkable find and I'm anxious to hear comments from those that are opposed to Kingdom Accountability. Does this sermon have any sway on those that are opposed to this doctrine or does it just suggest that Tozer was a heretic?
     
  4. npetreley

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    I have to say I've never been impressed with Tozer. There were many logical fallacies in the book I read by him years ago.

    Regardless, I'm not at all opposed to the idea of accoutability. But where does Tozer say that if we do not do well, we will spend 1,000 years in the lake of fire? Where does he explain how this harmonizes with the fact that we are not appointed to wrath? Where does he claim that "eternity" actually means 1,000 years? Where does he claim that we are justified by works? Where does he claim that faith is works? I must have missed those parts.
     
  5. Hope of Glory

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    You imply that someone on this board has said this. Who and where?
     
  6. Rufus_1611

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    Where does the unprofitable servant go?
    "And cast ye the unprofitable servant into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth." - Matthew 25:30

    As to the time frame, Tozer leaves that unstated. How long do you believe the unprofitable servant will be in outer darkness?
     
  7. Rufus_1611

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    There are a number of Kingdom Accountability believers, myself included, who believe that the unprofitable servants will be in outer darkness for the duration of the millenial reign of Jesus Christ.
     
  8. Amy.G

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    Kingdom accountability believers,

    What is the gospel of God and what happens to those who do not obey it?
     
  9. Hope of Glory

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    I'm talking specifically about where he claims that we all say they'll end up in the lake of fire.

    There is no doubt, if you look at what the Scriptures say that it is his servant (a saved person) and he ends up in outer darkness during the millennial reign. And, it's not someone who was evil and wicked, simply unprofitable.

    I'm just asking him to show where anyone has said they'll end up in the lake of fire.
     
  10. Rufus_1611

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    Oh...excellent catch...I didn't note the "lake of fire" comment. I don't think anyone has said that either.
     
  11. BrianReimer

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    Hi Amy,
    The gospel of God, simply put, is His Word. Jesus being The Word incarnate.

    What happens to those who do not obey? 1) If we reject our pardon purchased at Calvary we cannot be born from above; we will not be in God's family. 2) If we receive our pardon, the gospel (Word) of God says we as His children (believers) will be presented to our Saviour at His judgment seat. The JSOC is where we will be called to account, as His servants, for what we did with so great salvation.

    Mine is a simple answer. Others will do better, I'm sure. What do you believe the answer is, Amy? Thank you for reading the article.
     
  12. npetreley

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    What's the matter, KS/MEers? Are you forgetting your own statements and doctrine? Some of you have referred to Matthew 25 as being directed to believers only. Well, here it is:

    Matthew 25:41 “Then He will also say to those on the left hand, ‘Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels
     
  13. J. Jump

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    That is aionios fire the same as aionios life. This not a mention of the lake of fire forever and ever and ever. Now unless you can show that a saved person can lose his salvation there is only one other option for this verse, because unsaved folks are not God's servants. God does not expect unsaved people to return a profit, one because that is an impossibility since they are spiritually dead and two He doesn't give His portion to the unsaved.

    In Scripture there are only two options. The right one directed by the Spirit and then all the others that equate error. It was "His" servant. There is no other way to read that other than saved with expectations to deliver.
     
  14. npetreley

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    Well, there you have it. You wanted to know who said Christians would spend 1,000 years in the lake of fire. Mr. Jay Jonah Jump says so.
     
  15. DeafPosttrib

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    All millennial exculsionists hold security salvation doctrine, while they teaching that a unfaithful servant shall be cast in hell for 1000 years.

    They have serious problem. This is clearly sound like purgatory teaching. I reject it, because it is unbiblical and hersey.

    Matt. 25:30 speaks very clear that a unfaithful servant shall be cast away into the fire is the eternal punishment, not temporarily.

    I know, many OSASers dislike many scriptures with truths and warnings. But, we have to accept God's Word, and take heed to them, obey them with fear.

    Myself am ex-OSAS before. Whilst myself was OSAS that time, in year 2000, I read Matthew 25:14-30. Verse 30 really bother me the mostly, because it offends me while I hold security salvation doctrine.

    Notice Christ use illustrations of three servants at the judgment day. All of them are clear apply to us, aren't we the servants of God? Yes, we are God's servants, so, therefore, this passage is obivous apply to us all. Matt. 25:30 really scary me. If I hid my duty when after Christ called me to obey him, and do not use talent to serve him, then I would be cast away in the lake of fire. It is clearly speak of everlasting punishment, not temporarily or 1000 years either.

    I urge you better listen God's Word and take heed, lest let your hold hope of salvation slip away. Hold your hope of salvation all the way to the end - 1 Tim. 6:12.

    Entering into the narrow road is not easy, it is our hardship life, because we are already face spiritual warfare while we are alive. We must endure them and overcome them till we die or Christ comes, then we shall be victory and have eternal life.

    Please take heed what God's Word saying, obey God's Word, so you shall have eternal life. Do you want go to everlasting fire? Of course, all of you don't want to, then you better obey God's Word.

    In Christ
    Rev. 22:20 -Amen!
     
  16. DeafPosttrib

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    J.J. ,

    You say Matt. 25:41 is not speak of lake of fire.

    Oh Please! :eek:

    Did you see a thousand years mentioned in the context of Matthew 25:31-46? If nothing, then, you cannot add or removed word from God's Word - Rev. 22:18-19. You better be careful what you saying toward God's Word, and Christ's own saying.

    Many religions include baptists can easy understand Matt. 25:41 is clear speak of everlasting punishment in hell(common for them to say it is hell, but it is obivously speak of lake of fire) at the judgment seat of Christ.

    Also, the scene of Matthew 25:31-46 is very clear speak of great white throne follow at Christ's coming, that, all nations, every individuals all shall face the throne of Christ. All of goats shall go into everlasting punishment, all of sheep shall go into eternal life - Matt. 25:46. That's simple and plain.

    There is no purgatory in Matthew chapter 25.

    In Christ
    Rev. 22:20 -Amen!
     
  17. Run2Win

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    He didn't, nor have I seen anyone else make that statement. But while we are on that topic. Faith is made complete through works. Not the faith that is needed for justification as far as being dead in trespasses in sin, but faith in the terms of believing what God has said and doing it.

    Jas 2:22 Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect?

    Abraham's Faith was made perfect or complete by his willingness to act out on what God had commanded concerning his son Issac.

    Heb 11:17 By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Isaac: and he that had received the promises offered up his only begotten son,
    Heb 11:18 Of whom it was said, That in Isaac shall thy seed be called:
    Heb 11:19 Accounting that God was able to raise him up, even from the dead; from whence also he received him in a figure.

    Abraham's justification in God's eyes concerning a relationship with him:
    Ro 4:2 For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God.
    Ro 4:3 For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.

    Salvation is of the Lord , it is a gift. Once you have received the gift then you must continue to exercise your faith in whatsoever ways God directs you to. In Abraham's case it was to offer up his son. This is what James is saying.

    I hope that you don't see these passages as contradictions, do you?
    Heb 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him
     
    #17 Run2Win, Jul 29, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 29, 2007
  18. npetreley

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    Pay attention, then. HoG said it, for one.
     
  19. J. Jump

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    How can you get this statement when my statement is "This not a mention of the lake of fire forever and ever and ever."

    I have to admit that unfortunatley my fingers didn't keep up with my brain and it's not very good English :laugh:. Language cop stay away I already know. :laugh:
     
  20. Amy.G

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    The gospel of God is the good news of salvation by grace through faith in the shed blood of Jesus Christ for all those who believe. It has nothing to do with works after we're saved. Those that do not obey the gospel of God will spend eternity in the lake of fire.

    It is very simple and there is nothing in scripture whatsoever that says that a born again child of God receives His wrath or punishment and spends 1000 years in outer darkness, hell, lake of fire or whatever you want to call it.
     
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