Perhaps the most disheartening “defection” is someone I have personally respected through the years. Yet, John MacArthur steps onto the platform for the biennial conference, Together for the Gospel, along with David Platt, Matt Chandler, Al Mohler, Ligon Duncan, Thabiti Anyabwile, and John Piper every time and has for years. At the very least, his presence gives them theological cover. Worse, it implies his endorsement. MacArthur also invited James White to speak at his church and seminary in June 2018, despite James White’s violation of 2 Corinthians 6:14-17 and 2 John 9-11 when he partnered with a Jew-hating, Holocaust-denying, Hitler-defending, jihadi-preaching Imam at a 2017 conference in Memphis, Tennessee.
What makes John MacArthur’s participation especially odd is that MacArthur has for many years openly criticized those who were theologically off-base. For instance, in critiquing charismatics at the Strange Fire conference, MacArthur said:
[quote] [W]hen theologically respected conservative continuationists—who represent a very small minority in the charismatic movement—when they give any credibility to the movement, the whole movement gets respect because of who they are. And then you have this young generation of young, restless, reformed young people coming along and attaching to their heroes, who are open to this charismatic movement, and affirming the continuation of the signed gifts, and so they follow their heroes and either embrace that idea of continuation, or are open to that idea, which is essentially one and the same. When notable continuationist scholars give credence to charismatic interpretations, or fail to directly condemn unbiblical charismatic practices, they provide theological cover for a movement that is deadly dangerous. [end quote]
So, we shouldn’t be giving theological cover by working with the clear-minded charismatics, but it’s okay to speak together at the same conference with Chandler, Platt, and Piper? Is there not an inconsistency here? Doesn’t MacArthur’s presence “provide theological cover for a movement that is deadly dangerous?”
While I’m not into fighting the charismatics, I am opposed to the Word of Faith and the New Apostolic Reformation. But I know many born again, gospel-defending, gospel-preaching, clear-minded charismatics, and I’m not about to go to war with them. If John MacArthur wants to do that, that’s his business, but it’s disturbing to see MacArthur worried about clear-minded charismatics while he shares the stage with people promoting cultural Marxism, white privilege, race-baiting, and other dialectical rubbish.
There is no excuse for this. My ministry does not bring in $20 million a year like his, so you would think he would have enough people on staff to do the research we’re doing to be aware of the cultural Marxist threat. Although I’ve personally tried to warn the MacArthur ministry about this, I’ve ended up being attacked by Grace to You staff and their friends. Apparently, if you are one of the “good guys” preaching extreme Calvinism these days, you get a pass.
The takeaway of this chapter, of course, is that we should have no part in building the coming global false dominant church of Revelation 17. We need courage and conviction to understand that even some of our most well-liked Bible teachers have feet of clay. As Galatians says, some may become your enemy because you speak the truth, but if that’s what is required to keep the gospel safe from New Agers and cultural Marxists, then so be it.