At least in Charismatic circles, this grace message has been given derogatory names like “Hyper-Grace,” a modern form of antinomianism, that these preachers are giving license to sin, along with all kinds of warnings from various prominent leaders that their followers should stay away from this so-called false doctrine.
But instead of being informed by other people’s opinions, no matter how popular they may be, and dismissing what these teachers have to say without investigation, I think it would be wiser if we would be good “Bereans” and see if these things are so according to Scripture instead of our traditions (Acts 17:10-11).
So, since I’ve been spending time preparing for the summit, and have written on this subject before, I thought I would include a recent John Crowder video clip for your edification (or perhaps, entertainment. He is funny!)
There’s probably no one more maligned and misrepresented for his views on grace today than John Crowder. You might not like his ministry style, and you certainly don’t have to agree with everything he says, but you should actually hear what he has to say before you find yourself fighting against something you don’t understand. I have listened to him and have found his view very solid on this important subject.
Watching the clip, Crowder reminds me of what Robert Farrar Capon said rather tongue-in-cheek about the job of a good preacher…
“I think good preachers should be like bad kids. They ought to be naughty enough to tiptoe up on dozing congregations, steal their bottles of religion pills…and flush them all down the drain.”
And another favorite Capon quote of mine, describing what may be happening today where the ancient wells of pure grace are again being uncovered as they were by the early reformers…
“The Reformation was a time when men went blind, staggering drunk because they had discovered, in the dusty basement of late medievalism, a whole cellar full of fifteen-hundred-year-old, two-hundred proof Grace–bottle after bottle of pure distillate of Scripture…”
Perhaps we, too, are coming out of our own dark age of evangelical superstition and religious coercion and finding this intoxicating freedom for ourselves. (Gal.5:1)
You might wonder why I keep bringing this subject up on a blog about the Father’s love. Well, there’s three main reasons for this:
First, I believe that our mixed grace/law message (that we’ve called grace) has actually hindered us from growing deeper in intimacy with our heavenly Father. As Paul points out, the Law actually makes us more sin-conscious, not God-conscious (Rom.7:7-11). It’s mixing old wine in a new wineskin; it can never make us holy or righteous and actually separates us from God while denying the finished work of Christ (Gal.2:21).
Secondly, grace and identity go hand in hand. In fact, you won’t properly understand the undiluted grace message thinking like a spiritual orphan. The rebellious orphan will abuse it, the religious orphan will dismiss it and demonize those who preach it. We must understand what it means to be a fully-affirmed son/daughter in the Father’s embrace before we will understand the grace of God that truly empowers us and makes us free. Otherwise, we will build a fence of rules and outward controls around it. But those who finally see themselves in “Christ and Him crucified” (1 Cor.2:2), who walk by the Spirit instead of religious behavior modification, need no such fence (see Gal.3:24-25; 5:16, 22-23).
Third, because I believe we’ve entered into a new season of Kingdom advancement. As God has already upgraded our understanding of sonship and the Father’s heart over the last few decades, He’s now upgrading our understanding of grace as we learn to live on the right side of the Cross.
Here’s the description given on Crowder’s YouTube channel about the clip:
“Rightly Defining the Grace of God:
Following last year’s book “Hypergrace” written by Dr. Michael Brown against John Crowder and other proponents of New Covenant grace theology, John is finally offering clarity on the subject. In a frank and honest rebuttal, John addresses three main misconceptions from his accusers: the idea that we preach “license to sin;” the idea that we are against confession; and the idea that we don’t preach repentance.
Far from a defense, John merely clears the air for those confused about what this false moniker “hypergrace” is all about. Enjoy this video as John dispels the myth that the Gospel of Jesus Christ requires our human assistance. For more on Sons of Thunder Ministries and Publications, visit us online at http://www.thenewmystics.com. ”
So, I hope you will take some time to watch this video and get the right information about what people like Crowder believe about grace. But no matter what, know that you are loved!
Photo (modified) used by permission from freeimages.com