"Some brethren are just on a witch hunt," defenders of apostates like Max Lucado affirm. Of course, such a flippant accusation is absurd on the face of it--as if most preachers wouldn't prefer spending time on other areas of endeavor. But even if the charge were true, in this case, we've found one. A witch, that is. Truly, Max has somehow cast a spell over quite a number of brethren.
So what follows is a portion of a speech that he made at Trinity Baptist Church in San Antonio, Texas, and, yes, I have a tape of the entire "sermon" in case anyone thinks the transcribed portion below was taken out of context. [Why is it that faithful gospel preachers must be scrupulously careful about documenting one false teacher, but we may be lumped together, indicted wholesale, and summarily dismissed by thoughtless phrases such as witch-hunters (without any evidence whatsoever)?]
Max Lucado: "But the longer I've been in this battle, I've noticed that there are some curious soldiers who share these foxholes with us. For example: there's an Anglican by the name of C.S. Lewis, whose books put muscle in my faith; a Presbyterian (of all people) by the name of Stephen Brown, formerly of Key Biscayne, Florida (somehow I got on his tape mailing list), and he helped me understand the sovereignty of God; another Presbyterian by the name of Frederick Boettner, who writes books somewhere in Vermont, helped me see the passion of Christ; a former Catholic priest named Brennan Manning convinced me that Jesus is relentlessly tender; a Nazarene by the name of Jim Dobson helped my family skills; a pastor of the Evangelical Free Church named Chuck Swindoll helped my preaching; a Baptist in Miami taught me about grace; a Pentecostal in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, helped me understand prayer."
"Some day, when we all get to heaven, I'm going to finally learn the name of some radio preacher who was on the air in 1978. I was home working in an oil field job, wantin' some extra money. My faith was very fragile. I had more questions than I had answers, and I was literally at a crossroads as to whether or not I was going to believe. While making some deliveries for an oil field company in a pickup truck, I could only pick up one radio station. I don't know if that's because of west Texas or because of the truck, or both. But that one radio station had a radio preacher, and in fifteen minutes, he put the heart and soul of the faith in a little sermon on the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus. And all of a sudden I realized it wasn't what I knew, it was Who I knew. And I pulled over to the side of the road and rededicated my faith. [It] may have been a Quaker, Methodist, Baptist, or an angel. Or all four!"
Anyone should be able to read these word of Max Lucado's and understand that he accepts all who abide in religious denominations as brethren, Christians. Never mind if they were immersed, sprinkled, or whatever. If they claim to be a Christian, that's good enough for Max. The following observations are in order.
First, does not the Bible teach the grace of God? Who made the Baptists the guardians of this doctrine? In fact, when they teach salvation by grace and faith ALONE, they have perverted the Biblical doctrine. Did Max get his false ideas of salvation from them? Does not the Bible proclaim that God is sovereign? Must we go to Presbyterians to get a clue? Is the Bible so mysterious in its teaching about prayer that we have to import teaching from Brazil? Perhaps if Lucado had spent more time in the Book and less time with popular authors, he might have learned a great deal more than he currently knows.
Second, It's too bad that in all of his gleaning he never found anybody to teach him a love of the TRUTH. Those lacking such a love cannot be saved (2 Thess. 2:10). Since he is so influenced by the writings of men, too bad he never read The Bible Only Makes Christians Only And the Only Christians by brother Thomas B. Warren. In fact, Max did not see fit to credit even one faithful brother with enough knowledge to teach him anything.
Third, the fact that these men have written some helpful things does not make them brethren. Fourth, it does matter what you know as well as Who you know. Who (Jesus) said it matters what ("If you continue in My word, then you are My disciples indeed, and you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free" (John 8:31-32). [See also Romans 16: 17-18 and 2 John 9-11.]