Destined To Reign or Destined For Error? The imbalanced theology of Joseph Prince

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prince_destined-to-reignThe Hyper Grace Movement has infiltrated the Church of Jesus Christ in such a way that while there are godly brothers and sisters within it, the imbalance of it’s teachers and teachings is striking. The Hyper Grace Movement promotes a fluffy sanata claus type God who no longer judges sin and no longer calls for repentance from those who profess Christ yet live in a manner which brings shame and dishonor to the Name of Jesus Christ. One such Hyper Grace Teacher who is often quoted by sincere yet sincerely wrong saints, is a man by the name of Joseph Prince (Click here to learn more about Joseph Prince). Mr. Prince is a favorite of those chained to the Hyper Grace Movement; he teaches an imbalance and as a result those who apply his teachings become imbalanced in their theology and in their living. I want to deal with a particular statement that Joseph Prince made. I have seen a quote by Joseph Prince which was posted by a well meaning yet mis-guided individual that I want to address in this article. While Joseph Prince is a popular figure among Word of Faith and Hyper Grace advocates, his position on Biblical issues is lacking in contextual merit, as we will see. Many godly brothers and sisters have taken to Joseph Prince in an unhealthy and unbalanced manner, not going to the Word to see if what he’s teaching is indeed based on Biblical accuracy. He stated:

“Old Testament Preachers call your sin to remembrance, while New Testament Preachers call your Righteousness to remembrance. Old Testament Preachers tell you what’s wrong with you, while New Testament Preachers tell you what is right with you because of what Jesus has done, in spite of what is wrong with you.” (Source: Destined To Reign)

To the untrained mind this may appear to be a “spiritual” statement yet to the Biblical student it’s a slanderous attack on the Word of God. How so? Let us now test Joseph Prince’s theology as instructed by the Apostle John in 1 John 4:1

Both the Old Testament and New Testament show the servants of God preaching both against sin and for one’s standing in the Lord as the following demonstrates:

1- Old Testament preaching against sin 2 Chronicles 7:14 “ Then if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land.”

The Old Testament, as seen here, calls for repentance from sin. God hates sin yet He promises to restore and cleanse the one who turns from it.

2- New Testament preaching against sin 1 Corinthians 5:9-11 “When I wrote to you before, I told you not to associate with people who indulge in sexual sin. But I wasn’t talking about unbelievers who indulge in sexual sin, or are greedy, or cheat people, or worship idols. You would have to leave this world to avoid people like that. I meant that you are not to associate with anyone who claims to be a believer yet indulges in sexual sin, or is greedy, or worships idols, or is abusive, or is a drunkard, or cheats people. Don’t even eat with such people.”

This is hardcore preaching in the New Covenant against sin! How one can overlook the clear directives that Paul the Apostles gives concerning professing Christians who walk in and practice sin is beyond me. One must engage in theological gymnastics in order to come to a conclusion that the New Testament does not preach against sin and professing Christians who live in it.

3- Old Testament preaching on one’s position in the Lord Psalm 51:-12 “Have mercy on me, O God, because of your unfailing love. Because of your great compassion, blot out the stain of my sins. Wash me clean from my guilt. Purify me from my sin.”

King David knew – not the “hardline God” that Joseph Prince and other HG promoters display… but rather he knew a God of mercy and unfailing love! David knew who His God was and what God thought of him. This is abundantly clear from the text. To not see this is to be blind and clearly so.

4- New Testament preaching on one’s position in the Lord Romans 8:17 “And since we are his children, we are his heirs. In fact, together with Christ we are heirs of God’s glory. But if we are to share his glory, we must also share his suffering.”

Just as we read God saying that the Israelites were “His” People in 2 Chronicles 7:14, so we see the same here in Romans. All who believe in Jesus Christ and who have turned from their sin are the children of God. This is New Covenant theology on one’s position in Jesus Christ.

So you see, both the Old Covenant and the New Covenant present both preaching against sin and the promotion of one’s identity in the Lord. Joseph Prince seems to have cherry picked his theology and as a result has lead many to believe in a theological position which is flawed and which causes those who preach against sin to be labeled as “Old Covenant Preachers”. Have you ever heard the term “preaching from the ministry of condemnation”? If so, you’ve encountered what is known as a Hyper Grace Teacher. They speak of sin in passing and while they do not outright promote sin, they certainly despise the preaching of Holiness. To them, holiness is Old Testament and Love is New Testament. While they will tell you that it’s wrong to fornicate, lie and commit adultery, they stop short of Paul the Apostle’s own words in Galatians 5:19-21 which says:

 When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, the results are very clear: sexual immorality, impurity, lustful pleasures,  idolatry, sorcery, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension, division, envy, drunkenness, wild parties, and other sins like these. Let me tell you again, as I have before, that anyone living that sort of life will not inherit the Kingdom of God.”

You see, brothers and sisters, those who follow men such as Jospeh Prince, Tullian Tchividjian (who was preaching the “grace message” while committing adultery)… those who follow such men will often make statements that sound and appear to be spiritual yet lack Biblical foundation. They will often tell you that they’re preaching New Covenant Love yet upon close examination, the Love of God is lacking.

I exhort you who follow such men and their ministries to consider the danger you’ve placed yourself in and to return to a Biblical understanding of Law and Grace. Remove yourself from influences which do not call for holiness and right living. Jesus Himself stated:

“Beware of false prophets who come disguised as harmless sheep but are really vicious wolves. You can identify them by their fruit, that is, by the way they act. Can you pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles?  A good tree produces good fruit, and a bad tree produces bad fruit. A good tree can’t produce bad fruit, and a bad tree can’t produce good fruit. 19 So every tree that does not produce good fruit is chopped down and thrown into the fire.  Yes, just as you can identify a tree by its fruit, so you can identify people by their actions.” (Matthew 7:15-20)

Hyper Grace Preachers despise focusing on actions (fruit) yet Jesus told us it was by one’s actions that we would know whether they were genuine or counterfeit; not by one’s belief system. Why? Because one’s belief system always – without exception – shows in one’s actions. You cannot love your boyfriend or girlfriend if you’re sleeping with them. You do not love your spouse if you’re committing adultery. It makes no difference what one claims; love does no wrong to it’s neighbor:

“Love does no wrong to others, so love fulfills the requirements of God’s law.”  (Romans 13:10)

Notice that love doesn’t do away with the Law of God; it fulfills the Law’s requirements. This is not the message of Hyper Grace Followers who tell us to stay away from the Law of God. The New Covenant tells us that Love will obey God’s Law; how can one come to any other conclusion when the pages of Holy Writ make it so abundantly clear?

I want to encourage you today to search the Scriptures when you’re presented with what appears to be a “revelation from God”. In doing so, you’ll show yourself to be wise and to be building on a sure foundation. To reject such is to place your soul in danger and to leave yourself wide open for false teachers and false prophets:

Jude 1:3-4 “Dear friends, I had been eagerly planning to write to you about the salvation we all share. But now I find that I must write about something else, urging you to defend the faith that God has entrusted once for all time to his holy people. I say this because some ungodly people have wormed their way into your churches, saying that God’s marvelous grace allows us to live immoral lives. The condemnation of such people was recorded long ago, for they have denied our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.”

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Click here for the Biblical teaching on Law and Grace

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