Program#L14--“The Theological Adventures of Johnny Lukewarm andPastor Loophole:  Inability”


Radio Show Transcript, 2001, Persuade TheWorld Ministries, Gordon James Klingenschmitt, Servant.  Copyingand distribution (without editing) is highly encouraged.  


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Opening introduction by MarkMcWilliams…

Welcome and thank you for joining this radiobroadcast of Persuade The World Ministries.  You’reabout to hear our radio production of the book written and taughtby Gordon James Klingenschmitt, entitled “License To Sin,The Number One Reason America Is Losing Its MoralFoundation.”  If you call us in the next hour,we’ll mail you a free cassette tape of today’sbroadcast, which you can copy and give to your friends.  Justcall our toll-free phone number:  866-Obey-God.  That’stoll free, 1-866-O-B-E-Y-G-O-D.  Gordon JamesKlingenschmitt is a graduate of the United States Air ForceAcademy, and a seminary graduate of Regent University, holdingboth M.B.A. and Master of Divinity degrees.  He’s alsothe founder and servant of Persuade The World Ministries, a501(c3) tax-exempt religious non-profit corporation in ColoradoSprings, dedicated to persuading individuals in America andthroughout the world to forsake their sins and submit theirhearts and minds to the loving rulership of our Lord, JesusChrist.  And now with today’s teaching, here is GordonJames Klingenschmitt. 


Teaching by Gordon JamesKlingenschmitt…

Thanks Mark.  Today we continue ourmini-drama entitled “The Theological Adventures of JohnnyLukewarm and Pastor Loophole.”  You may remember ourcharacters, Johnny Lukewarm, and Pastor Loophole from our lastbroadcast.  But before we re-introduce these two characters,let’s read again from 2nd Timothy chapter 3. “For the time will come when men will not put up withsound doctrine.  Instead, to suit their own desires, theywill gather around them a great number of teachers tosay what their itching ears want to hear.  Theywill turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside tomyths.”  People often turn to counselors who tellthem what their itching ears want to hear.  As is the casewith our character, Johnny Lukewarm, who comes into PastorLoophole’s office to get advice…

           (Lower) “Please have a seat, Johnny.  What seems to bebothering you today?” 

           Johnny’s brow furrows with concern.  (Higher)“Pastor Loophole, I’m very upset about this particularpassage of scripture.  It seems as though God is commandingme to do something I really don’t want to do.  Do Ireally have to repent, and stop sinning, and obey God?  Oris there some other alternative? 

           (Lower) “Why, certainly there is, Johnny, you just relax. I can offer you dozens of alternatives, and give you very logicalreasons why you don’t have to obey God.” 

           (Higher) “Oh, thank goodness.  For a minute there, Ithought I’d actually have to change my behavior and obeyGod!”  Johnny breathes a sigh of relief.  He sitsforward eagerly, with his itching ears searching for some way ofescape from the Holy Spirit’s conviction.  But theSpirit of God is grieved away, and He slowly withdraws hisconviction from Johnny’s life. 


Now let’s continue with Loophole #19,entitled “Perfect holiness is not possible.” Sohere’s Pastor Loophole again. 

“Perfectholiness is just not possible to achieve in this lifetime,”says Pastor Loophole.  “I mean, can any human beingreally live a perfectly holy life?  If God demands absoluteperfection, then none of us can ever meet God’sstandard—it’s just too difficult.  And sinceperfect holiness is not possible, then it must not be requiredfor salvation.  Perfect holiness is a nice goal, butit’s never fully reachable.  That’s why Jesus diedon the cross!  So you could go to heaven without holiness. Jesus forgives your sins, even while you continue to enjoy someof them!  If perfect holiness is impossible, it must beoptional when it comes to salvation.” 


TIME OUT !!  Let’s look at thescriptures everybody, and analyze Pastor Loophole’s advice. Let’s rightly divide the word of truth, and separate thetruth from the lies in the advice given by Pastor Loophole. First, I want to acknowledge the true part.  It’s truethat God has high standards, and without access to God’shelp, nobody could be perfectly holy.  But the lie is thateven with God’s help, you can’t be holy in thislifetime.  Here’s the truth to replace that lie:  WithGod’s enabling, strengthening help, you can be holy in thislifetime.  And not only is holiness possible, it’smandatory for eternal life.  The Bible says, withoutholiness, no one will see the Lord.  The truth is thatGod does not forgive those sins you continue to enjoy.  AndHebrews 10 says, if you deliberately keep on sinning, nosacrifice or atonement for your sins is left, and what Jesus didon the cross doesn’t apply to you.


           Now let’s talk about these two words for a moment:  “perfectholiness.”  Say them out loud.  “Perfectholiness.”  What do you think?  Is it possible foryou to achieve perfect holiness?  Don’t say‘no’ right away, what does the Bible say about perfectholiness?  You know, these aren’t my words,they’re in the Bible.  Jesus commanded, “Beperfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.”[1]  And God commands, “Beholy, because I am holy.” [2]  Now whatever Godmeans by these commands, “be perfect,” and “beholy,” let’s everybody first agree these commandsdidn’t originate in my mouth, they came from the mouth ofGod.  Jesus said, be perfect.  And God said, beholy.  So if you refuse to “be perfect” andyou refuse to “be holy,” you’re not rebellingagainst me and my teaching, you’re rebelling against God.

Now what does Godmean by these words, “be perfect” and “beholy?”  Instead of making up our own definitions ofthese words, let’s find God’s definition of“perfect holiness.”  Let’s not create somedifferent standard—either higher or lower—and pretendit’s the same as God’s standard.  Perfect holinessis doing everything God requires—nothing more and nothingless—only what God himself requires in the Bible.  Nowcan you at least agree that if you meet all of God’srequirements for perfect holiness, then you are perfectly holy? Even if some theology professor looks at you and disagrees. If God says you’ve done everything He requires, thenyou are perfectly holy.

           OK, so what does God require for perfect holiness?  Jesussaid, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heartand with all your soul and with all your mind.’  Thisis the first and greatest commandment.  And the second islike it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’  Allthe Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”[3]  Did you know that all of God’srequirements can be summed up in two commandments, Love God andlove your neighbor?  The Bible says, Love one another,for he who loves…has fulfilled the law.  Thecommandments, ‘Do not commit adultery,’ ‘Do notmurder,’ ‘Do not steal,’ ‘Do not covet,’and whatever other commandment there may be,are summed up in this one rule: “Love your neighbor asyourself” Therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.[4]  So if you love, you automaticallyfulfill all of God’s other commands.  Even his commandsto “be perfect,” and “be holy.” If you love God and love your neighbor, you automatically fulfillall of God’s requirements for perfect holiness.  TheBible says, He who loves…has fulfilled the law.[5]

So if you love Godwith all your heart, and love your neighbor as yourself, you areperfectly holy, not according to my definition of perfectholiness, but according to God’s definition of perfectholiness.  So this leaves us just one question:  Is itpossible in this lifetime, to love God with all your heart, andlove your neighbor as yourself? 


Now I’m going to give you threetheological proofs that it is possible to love God withall your heart, and love your neighbor as yourself.  Perfectholiness is possible in this lifetime.  And if lovingGod with all your heart is possible in this lifetime, thenit’s required, not optional.  Now if loving God withall your heart is not possible, then it can’t be required. But perfect love, or perfect holiness, are possible in thislifetime, and I can prove it three different ways.  


Here’s proof number 1: 

This is what I call the “God’sjustice” proof.  Let me ask you a question.  IsGod full of justice?  Yes.  The Bible describes God asa just God.  He treats people fairly.  He’s notunjust or unfair.  OK, then let me ask this:  Does Godreward obedience and punish disobedience?  Yes.  TheBible says God rewards people when they obey, and punishes peoplewhen they disobey.  OK, now here’s my last question: Isit fair or just, for God to give you an impossible command, andthen punish you when you’re unable to obey?  Let me aska different way.  If God commanded you to perform animpossible task, and you couldn’t do it, would it be fairfor God to punish you for disobedience?  No way!  Thisproves that all God’s commands are possible to obey.  Godis just and fair, and God will never command you to do somethingyou’re unable to do. 


Just imagine if God said to Johnny Lukewarm,“I command you.  Flap your wings and fly.” 

“But I don’t have any wings,God,” says Johnny, “I can’t obey you.” 

“Then you will be punished,” saysGod. 

“But God, that’s not fair!” says Johnny, “How can you punish me for disobedience, when Idon’t have any wings?  That’s unjust!”  You’reright Johnny!  The God of the Bible would never command youto do something impossible.  The God of the Bible onlycommands you do things you’re fully able to do!  Sowhen God commands you to be perfect, and be holy, and love Godand love your neighbor, it must be actually possible to do thesethings.  If it wasn’t possible, God would be unfair togive commands like that.


Now here’s proof number two: 

I call it the “all you have”proof. 

Jesus says in Luke 10, “‘Lovethe Lord your God with all your heart andwith all your soul and with allyour strength and with all yourmind’” [6]  That’s what herequires:  love God with all your heart, soul, mind, andstrength.  Now did Jesus say, Love the Lord your God with moreheart than you’re able to have, with more soul thanyou’re able to give, with more strength thanyou’re able to muster, and with more intellect thanyou’re able to think?”  No!  God onlyrequires all you have, not more than you have.

Or let me ask itthis way.  Does God require 101% of what you’re able todo, or just 100% of what you’re able to do?  If Godrequires everything you’re able to give, does He demand morethan you’re able to give?  If God requires you do allyou are able to do, and nothing more, then are you able to dowhat God requires? If perfect holiness requires only thatwhich is possible, then is perfect holiness impossible? Of course not.  As Charles Finney once said, “To denythat entire obedience to God’s law is possible is to denythat a man is able to do as well as he can.”[7]  If perfect holinessrequires only what is possible, then perfect holiness, bydefinition, is possible! 


Now here’s proof number three: 

I call it the “enabling Christ”proof. 

Let’s imagine that you are completelyweak and unable to obey God, but you have access to Jesus Christ,who can strengthen you and enable you.  The Bible says, TheSovereign LORD is my strength; he makes myfeet like the feet of a deer, he enables meto go on the heights.[8]  Now if you’re completely unable toobey God, but you have access to Jesus who can enable you andstrengthen you just enough to make it possible for you to obeyGod, then is it still impossible for you to obey God?  Areyou unable to obey, when you have free and open access to DivineAbility Himself?  Don’t call Jesus impotent.  Heis strong, and able to save you from all your deadly sins.  TheBible says, He is able to keep you from falling and to presentyou before his glorious presence without fault? [9]  Now when you sayperfect holiness is not possible, you’re saying Jesusisn’t strong enough to make you perfectly holy!  Surelythe arm of the LORD is not too short to save. [10]  He will keep you strong to the end,so that you will be blameless on the day of our Lord JesusChrist.[11]

Again, if perfectholiness is impossible for you alone, is anything impossible foryou plus God?  With man this is impossible, but with Godall things are possible.[12]  What is impossible with menis possible with God.[13]  Let all these lies, that“perfect holiness is impossible” and “we’renot able to be perfectly holy” vanish in the presence of anAlmighty God. Everything is possible for him who believes.[14] Sovereign LORD… Nothing is too hard for you.[15] With God’s help, you can obey all His commands, even“be perfect,” and “be holy.”  WithGod’s help, it’s easy to love God with all your heart. Don’t say perfect holiness is impossible.  What isimpossible with men is possible with God.[16]Everything is possible for him who believes.[17]


Now think about that, while we take thisshort break. 


Middle segment by Mark McWilliams…

Thanks Gordon.  He’ll be back injust a moment.  But first, do you know somebody who needs tohear today’s message?  If you call our toll-free numberin the next hour, 866-Obey-God, we’ll mail you a freecassette tape of today’s broadcast, which you can copy andgive to your friends.  All our tapes are copyable and free,but please remember we need your donations to stay on the air andto give away these free tapes.  So please pray and obey,then send us your best possible donation, after you receive yourfree cassette.  (Gordon:  Hey time out!  Ifit’s your first time calling us, no donation is required! Just call us!)  Our toll free number is 866-Obey-God,that’s 1-866-O-B-E-Y-G-O-D.  And please specifyyou’re requesting today’s program.  Do you believeAmerica needs to hear these messages?  If so, then we needyou to sponsor us, by joining the Persuader’s Club with amonthly pledge of just $15.  If you join thePersuader’s Club, we’ll also send you an autographedcopy of Gordon’s book that you’ve been hearing.  Justvisit our web-site at  Or call us inthe next hour at 866-Obey-God.  Right now, let’s returnto Gordon James Klingenschmitt. 


Teaching continued by Gordon JamesKlingenschmitt…

Thanks again Mark.  Let’s continuewith Loophole #20, entitled, “You can’t know enough tobe holy.”  Here’s Pastor Loophole again. 

           “It’s impossible to be holy in this lifetime,”says Pastor Loophole, “because we can’t know everythingGod requires.  It takes an entire lifetime to learn whatpleases God.  Only when you see God face to face will youknow enough to be holy.  You’re probably committingsins everyday, and you don’t even realize it!  No,sanctification is a lifelong process, and only after you die willyou know enough to live a holy life.” 


TIME OUT !!  Let’s look at thescriptures everybody.  First, I want to acknowledge the truepart.  It’s true that in this lifetime we don’tknow everything about God, and in our ignorance, we mightaccidentally violate some of God’s commandments that wehaven’t yet learned.  But the lie is that accidentalsins you commit in ignorance are even sins in the first place. It’s only a sin if you know what you’re supposed to do,and don’t do it.  The Bible says, Anyone…whoknows the good he ought to do and doesn't do it, sins.[18] Sin requires knowledge of right and wrong.  If youdon’t know right from wrong, God doesn’t view it assin. 

           That’s how brand new believers can live in actual holiness,even when they don’t realize that their actions appearsinful!  New believer might not realize they’re walkingin sin.  And until the Holy Spirit reveals that sin issue totheir heart, they’re not responsible to deal with it.  Ifthey don’t know better, they’re innocent of allcrime—white as the driven snow.  That’s why Adamand Eve we totally innocent in the Garden of Eden—becausethey didn’t know right from wrong—they hadn’t yeteaten from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.[19]  And that’s why mentally ill peopleare often found “not guilty” by reason ofinsanity—because they don’t know right from wrong. But that’s also why we who teach will be judged morestrictly.[20] Because we know right from wrong.  And that’s why Jesussaid to the teachers of the law, "If you were blind, youwould not be guilty of sin; but now that you claim you can see,your guilt remains.[21]  And that’s why Paul wrote, “Sinis not taken into account where there is no law.” [22] And that’s why God provided atonement, for the sins thepeople had committed in ignorance.[23]  If you walk in ignorance, and youdon’t know right from wrong, then God doesn’t hold youaccountable to obey rules you don’t know about. 

But if your sinsare not committed in ignorance, Johnny Lukewarm, watch out! If you know better, and you deliberately continue to embrace yoursins, fear God!  The cross covers sins of ignorance, but ifyou’re walking in intentional sin, then what Jesus did onthe cross doesn’t apply to you.  Forsake your knownsins immediately!   

“Thatservant who knows his master's willand…does not do what his master wantswill be beaten with many blows.  Butthe one who does not know and doesthings deserving punishment will be beaten with fewblows. [24]  If you knowwhat God wants, you’re accountable to do it.  Buteven if you don’t know everything God requires, you canstill be holy in this lifetime, just obey the rules you know. Especially these two rules, which encompass all the other onesanyway:  Love God and love your neighbor. 


OK, let’s change gears again, and go onto Loophole #21, entitled, “Constant Thought.”  Here’sPastor Loophole again. 

           “You can’t be holy all the time.  If we had tolove God all the time, that would require we constantly thinkabout God, 24 hours a day.  But can you love God whileyou’re asleep?  Or while you’re doing a mathproblem?  No, we can’t be holy all the time, it’sjust not possible.  And if holiness isn’t possible, itmust not be required.”


TIME OUT!  Let’s look at thescriptures again, and analyze Pastor Loophole’s advice. The true part is that living a holy life requires you love God 24hours a day, around the clock.  But the lie is that lovingGod 24 hours a day means your mind has to be focused on God 24hours a day, and you have to walk around your house with yourhands up in the air, worshipping God 24 hours a day.  Youdon’t have to do that to be holy.  Holiness is takingtime to love your neighbors.  It’s being kind to yourenemies, and loving your children, and even taking care of yourown body, as long as you’re not being selfish about it. Jesus loved God 24 hours a day, but that doesn’t mean hestayed awake 24 hours a day.  Jesus loved God even while hewas asleep!  So it must be OK if we sleep too, as long aswe’re not lazy and slothful.  And Jesus was acarpenter, so he must have maintained perfect holiness, evenwhile his mind was occupied with building furniture.  Holinessdoesn’t require constantly thinking about God.  Peoplehave this screwed up concept of what holiness looks like, andsometimes we make it harder than God does.  Just love Godwith all your heart, and prioritize the time you have.  Whateveryou do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord.[25]


OK, let’s change gearsagain—let’s hear Loophole #22—entitled,“Partial repentance is good enough.”  Here’sPastor Loophole again. 

           “Johnny, you don’t have to be absolutely perfectly holyto get into heaven.  I mean, Christian conversion involves‘real change,’ but not absolute perfection.  Ifyou just forsake most of your sins, that’s close enough. You don’t have to forsake them all.  Partial repentanceis close enough.  After all, perfection is just not possiblein this lifetime, so it must not be required.” 


TIME OUT!  Let’s look at thescriptures again.  Did you know Jesus commanded us to“be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect?” That’s not my teaching, that’s the teaching of JesusChrist.  Jesus said you’ve got to love God with allyour heart, not just part of it.  And all your soul, notjust 90% of it.  And with all your mind and with all yourstrength.  You can’t partially repent.  You’vegot to forsake all your known sins, and make Jesus the Lord ofevery part of your life.  Now if a man deliberately embraces1000 known sins before conversion, and he repents of 999 of them,but he willfully and deliberately continues to enjoy 1 tiny sin,does God forgive that one tiny sin he hasn’t repented of? No way.  Hebrews 10 says if we deliberately keep onsinning after receiving knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice forsins is left.  But only a fearful expectation of judgmentand of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God.

If you haven’trepented of all your known sins, you haven’t repented atall.  A little yeast can spoil the whole dough.  Anythingless than total submission to God’s rule is not submissionat all.  God demands your unconditional, immediate, andtotal surrender. No one who continues to sin has either seenhim or known him. [26] 


Now some people might call this teaching“perfectionism.”  But if you want to slap me witha label, then put that label on Jesus too.  Jesus said, beperfect, even as your Father in heaven is perfect.” I’m not talking about physical perfection, or mentalperfection.  You don’t have to be a super athlete, likeMichael Jordan, or a super genius, like Albert Einstein.  Justlove God with all your heart.  Just love your neighbors atleast as much as you love yourself.  Just do everythingyou’re able to do.  That’s all God requires. He’s not demanding the impossible.  Just love God asmuch as you can.  If you love God as much as you can, andlove is made complete and perfect in your heart, you’ll havenothing to fear.  Just walk in perfect love, like Jesus did. But if you refuse to walk in perfect love, like Jesus did, thendon’t claim to be a Christian.  The Bible says, Thisis how we know we are in him: Whoever claims to live in him mustwalk as Jesus did.[27]


Let’s pray together.  Would youpray these words along with me, to God.  Go ahead and saythem out loud.  “Father in heaven, I want to love youwith all my heart.  I want to be perfect in the way I loveyou.  I don’t want to hold anything back.  But Ichoose right now, to love you with every ounce of my strength,and every part of my mind, and with all my soul.  I forsakeall my known sins, right now Lord.  Even the tiniest one Ican think of.  I hate my sins, and I ask you to come into myheart right now and cleanse me from all unrighteousness.  Comeand be the Lord of every part of my life right now.  Isurrender all.  In Jesus name I pray.  Amen.” 


Did you just pray with me?  If you justprayed with me, would you raise your right hand up to God?  Whereveryou are, it’s OK.  Just raise your right hand up toGod, as a sign that you prayed with me and gave your heart backto Him.  Some of you are receiving a physical healing inyour bodies right now, as God’s loving rulership takes overin your heart.  But if you prayed with me, whoever you are,can I ask you to write to me and get a copy of this book thatyou’re hearing me teach from?  In our book, and infuture broadcasts, we’ll answer the questions you may haveabout faith versus works, or eternal security.  So I hopeyou’ll write to us and tune in again next time.  Now Ilove you and I care about you.  So here’s Mark withmore information.  


Closing trailer by Mark McWilliams… 

Thanks Gordon, and thanks everybody forlistening. Do you know somebody who needs to hear today’smessage?  If you call our toll-free number in the next hour,866-Obey-God, we’ll mail you a free cassette tape oftoday’s broadcast, which you can copy and give to yourfriends. All our tapes are copyable and free, but please rememberthat we need your donations to stay on the air and to give awaythese free tapes.  So please pray and obey God about how muchthese teachings are worth to you, and return to us your bestpossible gift after you receive your free cassette.  (Gordon: Hey time out!  If it’s your first time contacting us,no donation is required!  Just call us!)  Our toll freenumber is 866-Obey-God, that’s 1-866-O-B-E-Y-G-O-D,and please specify you’re requesting today’s program. Now do you believe America needs to hear these messages?  Ifso, we’re specifically asking you to join thePersuader’s Club, and to sponsor this radio broadcast with amonthly pledge of just $15.  If you join thePersuader’s Club as a monthly partner, we’ll send youan autographed copy of the book you’ve been hearing, writtenand taught by Gordon James Klingenschmitt, entitled,“License To Sin, The Number One Reason America Is Losing ItsMoral Foundation.”  Just visit our web-site  That’s It’s the monthly donations of our Persuader’s Clubpartners who keep this program on the air.  Now if you havecomments or questions about today’s broadcast, you can emailus at,” Or you canwrite to us.  Or you can always call us toll free, at866-Obey-God.  And if you remember, please tell us the callsign of the radio station you’re listening to.  May Godbless you, and thank you for supporting Persuade The WorldMinistries.  Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, wepersuade men. 


<Manymore transcripts and free MP3 radio shows CLICK HERE>

[1] Matt 5:48 (NIV)

[2] 1 Pet 1:16 (NIV)

[3] Matt 22:37-40 (NIV)

[4] Romans 13:8-10 (NIV)

[5] Romans 13:8 (NIV)

[6] Luke 10:27 (NIV)

[7] Charles G. Finney, Systematic Theology,Bethany House Publishers, Minneapolis, 1976, p. 343

[8] Habakkuk 3:19 (NIV)

[9] Jude 1:24 (NIV)

[10] Isa 59:1 (NIV)

[11] 1 Cor 1:8 (NIV)

[12] Matthew 19:26 (NIV)

[13] Luke 18:27 (NIV)

[14] Mark 9:23 (NIV)

[15] Jer 32:17 (NIV)

[16] Luke 18:27 (NIV)

[17] Mark 9:23 (NIV)

[18] James 4:17 (NIV)

[19] Genesis 3:6 (NIV)

[20] James 3:1 (NIV)

[21] John 9:41 (NIV)

[22] Romans 5:12 (NIV)

[23] Heb 9:7 (NIV)

[24] Luke 12:47-48 (NIV)

[25] Col 3:23 (NIV)

[26] 1 John 3:6 (NIV)

[27] 1 John 2:6 (NIV)