Salvation by Grace Alone, Through Faith Alone — a sermon by Dr R Scott Clark

[August 27, 2022: There have been some changes made to this post. For more information, read the Editors’ notes at the bottom of the post. Editors.]

Using the text Ephesians 2:1-10, Dr R Scott Clark calls out lots of heretical views that are current today and are recycled versions of heresies the church has refuted in past centuries. Here are the false teachings which he calls out:

  • The idea that salvation has two stages and our final salvation will depend on faith and works. Clark doesn’t name in the sermon the people who are teaching this today, but the primary culprits are John Piper, Desiring God, Thomas Schreiner and Mark Jones. Clark has made it abundantly clear in his blog and on Twitter that John Piper is a proponent of this unorthodox idea.
  • The New Perspective on Paul (N T Wright).
  • The Federal Vision (Doug Wilson, et al).



Dr. R Scott Clark is Professor Church History and Historical Theology at Westminster Seminary California where he has served since 1997.  Professor Clark is an ordained minister in the United Reformed Church and is an Associate Pastor of Oceanside Untied Reformed Church in Carlsbad, CA.  (Source)

[August 27, 2022: Editors’ notes:

—For some comments made prior to August 27, 2022 that quoted from the post, the text in the comment that was quoted from the post might no longer be an exact match.
—For some comments made prior to August 27, 2022 that quoted from the post, the text in the comment that was quoted from the post might no longer be found in the post.
If you would like to compare the text in the comments made prior to August 27, 2022 that quoted from the post to the post as it is now (August 27, 2022), click here [Internet Archive link] for the most recent Internet Archive copy of the post.]


Further Reading and Listening

The Connection between #MeToo and the rejection of ‘salvation by faith alone’ (Sola Fide) — Barbara Roberts shows how the rejection of sola fide and the wrong interpretation of biblical precepts for righteous living is connected to many women and children being sexually harassed and assaulted.

What Precisely is the Disagreement with John Piper? — One of Brad Mason’s many posts in which he explains what is wrong with Piper’s view of salvation.

Lordship Salvation, an interview with Pastor John Fonville  — Theology Gals, Episode 35. Highly recommended for those who have the energy to dig into the history of how John MacArthur and John Piper have a ‘Lordship Salvation’ framework which is the substratum that gives rise to a lot of other problems in their doctrine.

4 thoughts on “Salvation by Grace Alone, Through Faith Alone — a sermon by Dr R Scott Clark”

  1. I knew something was wrong when I first read the very first thing of John Piper, but I could not tell right away. I was just very cautious and did not subscribe to anything further. Thanks.

    1. Hi Jeanne,

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  2. What a fantastic sermon! Loved it. Needed it. Thankfully I was linked to it via this blog. I remember hearing a sermon about two decades ago covering the fact that most people would say they’d tried to be decent people, looked to do more good than bad in their life, and so forth. Same thing as today, only greater numbers.

    I especially liked the part about how the criminal on the cross who joined Christ in paradise didn’t spend years repenting or earning up enough sorrow to be sufficient but rather he repented, he believed and it was grace, God’s unmerited favor, that gave him that forgiveness, which Christ earned — in full — for him (and myself) at the Cross.

  3. Pride is still the first sin, isn’t it? Man simply cannot allow that he has nothing whatsoever to do with the extending or receiving of God’s Grace: he just cannot accept that God is the sole author of any Goodness that comes to us, or is manifest through us. We want so badly to have some part in it, to take some credit so that we can be convinced we are “not as bad as that other guy.” And I understand that there are those who will balk at my perspective stated here, wanting to believe instead that man is simply naive or immature….something else other than prideful. But, God’s written word tells us differently; our hearts are deceitful….and will blind us to the Truth if we allow ourselves to lack discernment and wisdom.

    Nothing can be added to or taken from the Truth of God’s Grace: it is Him, His Gift, His doing, His works, not ours. Every time. All. The. Time.

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