John MacArthur, noted pastor and author from Sun Valley, California, is raising the alarm over the latest movement in the church that he believes “has penetrated deep into the culture of the church, and the end effect is disaster.”
Ever since the book of Acts was recorded, church fathers have warned Christians about the greatest threat to Christianity: false doctrine rising in their ranks. And chief among those today who provide those warnings is John MacArthur who sees himself as the protector of the truth.
But is that truth the truth as MacArthur sees it? Could that truth be perceived through a generational lens that may, in fact, keep him and others from pursuing what God has called the church to do? Not everyone agrees with John MacArthur in his latest assertion that social justice is “the most subtle and dangerous threat so far.”
John MacArthur Targets “Evangelicals’ Obsession With Social Justice”
MacArthur’s latest concern is to call out the increasingly popular “social justice” gospel as a dangerous false doctrine. He writes, “It’s my conviction that much of the rhetoric about this latest issue poses a more imminent and dangerous threat to the clarity and centrality of the gospel than any other recent controversy evangelicals have engaged in.”
MacArthur writes on his Grace to You blog that “evangelicalism’s newfound obsession with the notion of ‘social justice’ is a significant shift—and I’m convinced it’s a shift that is moving many people (including some key evangelical leaders) off message, and onto a trajectory that many other movements and denominations have taken before, always with spiritually disastrous results.”
Is Social Justice a Dangerous Threat to the Gospel?
Other leading experts may agree with John MacArthur on some points, such as the danger of an exclusive “social justice” emphasis becoming THE ONLY mission of the church. However, theologians and church leaders like James Emery White, pastor of Mecklenburg Community Church in Charlotte, North Carolina, write that “social ministry should not be paired against evangelism. We should extend the Bread of Life as well as bread for the stomach. But we must never begin, and end, with the stomach alone.”