Joseph Prince makes Jesus a Liar as he asserts that disciples aren’t saved until Christ died & resurrected – By Rev George Ong (Dated 10 June 2022)
(This article was also sent to Rev Dr Ngoei Foong Nghian, General Secretary, National Council of Churches of Singapore (NCCS) office, and for the attention of the Executive Committee Members.)
Before I take you through my latest article…
Joseph Prince has again unusually ‘absented’ himself from preaching live last Sunday on 5 June 2022 and Lawrence Lim preached in his stead.
Prince has done this for 2 consecutive Sundays. For the previous Sunday on 29 May 2022, he uploaded an old sermon in place of his live preaching.
With the recent resumption of worship services for mega churches, which have been put on hold for more than 2 years because of COVID-19, Prince should eagerly be looking forward to preaching more to his congregation, not less.
I am not sure whether the strange absence of his pulpit ministry for 2 consecutive Sundays has anything to do with his frustration about his loss of popularity where he sees his four worship services at Star Vista (venue of church meeting) being reduced by about 50% to two.
The fact that New Creation Church has recently announced that people no longer have to book or reserve seats in the worship services, which is a sudden departure from what was previously practised, is a clear sign that the attendance at the Church’s worship services has dropped drastically and that Joseph Prince’s popularity has suffered a severe beating.
Because Joseph Prince didn’t preach live last Sunday on 5 June 2022, this article (see below) isn’t based on that sermon but a sermon on 22 May 2022.
Joseph Prince makes Jesus a Liar as he asserts that disciples aren’t saved until Christ Died & Resurrected – By Rev George Ong
In a weekly Sunday sermon aired on YouTube on 22 May 2022, the same sermon that Joseph Prince preached against the costs of discipleship of Jesus in Luke 14:25-35, and when he mentioned one of his most infamous statements, “You are not a disciple anymore,” Prince said the following;
Please click here to view excerpts in the 30-second video:
“… Matthew, Mark, Luke and John is Jesus still under the law. All his disciples were under Law. In fact, let me tell you this. None of the disciples (Joseph Prince was referring mainly to the disciples/apostles of Christ) were saved or born again. How can they be saved? Nobody was saved. They were followers. Yes. They were disciples. Yes. But they were not saved. Why? How do I know that? Because Jesus has not yet died. He has not risen again. So they were followers of Jesus. Were they Christians? No. They were disciples. Put that right. He has not yet died. He has not yet risen. How can they be saved?”
First, Joseph Prince said,
“… Matthew, Mark, Luke and John is Jesus still under the law. All his disciples were under Law.”
What Joseph Prince is saying is that Jesus in the gospels was operating under the Old Covenant of Law and not under the New Covenant of Grace.
This is a very serious and false allegation that Prince has made against Jesus Himself.
As this would require a separate and thorough retort to his allegation, it would be covered as a sequel to this article to be featured next week. Don’t miss it!
Second, Joseph Prince also said,
“None of the disciples (Joseph Prince was referring mainly to the disciples/apostles of Christ) were saved or born again. How can they be saved? Nobody was saved.”
“Were they Christians? No. They were disciples. Put that right. He has not yet died. He has not yet risen. How can they be saved?”
Joseph Prince categorically asserts that no one, including Jesus’ disciples/apostles were saved, during Jesus’ earthly ministry until the death of Christ on the cross and His subsequent resurrection.
What Prince teaches does seem to sound correct on the surface – and that’s why he is able to deceive so many people, including pastors and even bishops.
But for those who know the scriptures, this teaching of Prince goes starkly against Jesus’ own words in the scriptures.
There is no denying that believers are saved by the blood of Christ which He shed for us on the cross. This is a foundational doctrine in Christianity that cannot be compromised.
However, there is a special period during Jesus’ earthly ministry where people who placed their faith in the Lord Jesus were saved even before His death on the cross.
Notwithstanding that they were saved in the gospels even though Jesus hadn’t died for them by shedding His blood on the cross, it is evidently assumed that they would have readily accepted it was the blood of Jesus that cleanses them of their sins, once the death of Jesus on the cross becomes a known fact to them at a later stage. If that was not so, this only proves they weren’t genuine believers in the first place.
This means that once they genuinely believe in Jesus as the Saviour of the world, and even if they were to die before Jesus was crucified on the cross, they would still be saved and are heaven-bound, based on what Christ would have done for them on the cross.
During the three years of Jesus’ earthly ministry, even before His death on the cross and resurrection, believers were already entering into the Kingdom of God. One cannot be said to enter the Kingdom of God and not be considered saved or a believer.
Christ Himself has revealed that many were entering God’s Kingdom as the good news or the gospel is being preached by Him even before the cross and His resurrection:
Luke 16:16 NIV
16 “The Law and the Prophets were proclaimed until John. Since that time, the good news of the kingdom of God is being preached, and everyone is forcing their way into it.”
Luke 16:16 MEV
16 “The Law and the Prophets were preached until John. Since then the kingdom of God has been preached, and everyone is pressing into it.”
Luke 16:16 NLT
16 “Until John the Baptist, the law of Moses and the messages of the prophets were your guides. But now the Good News of the Kingdom of God is preached, and everyone is eager to get in.”
So believers were already entering the Kingdom of God from the time of Jesus’ preaching.
The fact that many were saved by grace through faith was already happening before the Last Supper, before the death and resurrection of Christ, and before Pentecost.
In other words, the New Covenant’s promises and conditions to be saved were not only revealed but also inaugurated and implemented during the three years of Jesus’ ministry before His death on the cross.
To put it in another way – although the death of Christ on the cross must still take place for the terms and promises of the New Covenant to be fully and finally effected, the New Covenant of grace has already been inaugurated and implemented at the beginnings of Christ’s ministry in the gospels. (This particular issue would be covered in greater detail in the coming article to be featured next week.)
Because people were entering the kingdom of God before the death of Christ (and that certainly includes the disciples/apostles of Jesus) they must be people who were already saved by faith.
It is an undeniable fact that people were being saved by faith in Jesus throughout the gospels, well before Jesus was crucified on the cross.
Joseph Prince’s teaching that the disciples of Christ were not born again or saved during Jesus’ earthly ministry as His death on the cross has not happened yet, is a deceptive teaching that is calculated to mislead the naïve and uninitiated. The sad thing is even mature believers have fallen prey to this doctrinal ruse.
What about Zacchaeus?
In Luke’s Gospel, Christ met a man named Zacchaeus, who makes a distinctive commitment to Him by repenting of his sins of covetousness and cheating.
Christ responded very favourably to this man and said to him:
Luke 19:9-10 NIV
9 … “Today salvation has come to this house, because this man, too, is a son of Abraham. 10 For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”
Didn’t Christ say to Zacchaeus that “today salvation has come to his house?”
When did salvation come to Zacchaeus? – only when Christ died for Him on the cross?
Did Jesus say that to Zacchaeus?
Christ said to Zacchaeus, “today salvation has come to his house” when he believed in Christ and repented of his sins.
It was ‘today” that salvation came to Zacchaeus’ house at the time of Jesus’ earthly ministry and not sometime after His death and resurrection.
Salvation came not only to Zacchaeus but to many others in the gospels during the 3 years of Jesus’ earthly ministry.
Zacchaeus was already saved by faith in Jesus well before the cross.
This means that if Zacchaeus were to die the day after he had received Christ as Saviour and Lord, he would still be heaven-bound even though Jesus had not yet been crucified on the cross.
Joseph Prince has also conveniently forgotten that believers, including the disciples/apostles of Christ were cleansed of sin before the cross and Pentecost because their names were written in heaven.
Christ declared to His disciples:
John 15:3 NIV
3 “You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you.”
In other words, the disciples were already spiritually clean because they were forgiven of their sins even before the Lord’s Supper, the Cross, and Pentecost because they believed the word that Christ had spoken to them.
This is confirmed by the fact that when the disciples returned from a ministry assignment, they were told by Jesus Himself to “rejoice that your names are written in heaven,” in Luke 10:20:
Luke 10:17-20 NIV
17 The seventy-two returned with joy and said, “Lord, even the demons submit to us in your name.” 18 He replied, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. 19 I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you. 20 However, do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.”
When Jesus asked them to rejoice that their names are written in heaven, He was clearly saying they were born again and were already saved at that moment in time, not after the cross or His resurrection or Pentecost.
This is confirmed by Hebrew 12:23 NIV:
Hebrews 12:23 NIV
23 to the church of the firstborn, whose names are written in heaven. You have come to God, the Judge of all, to the spirits of the righteous made perfect,
The unmistakable characteristic of those, such as Christ’s disciples/apostles, who belong to “the Church of the firstborn” is that their “names are written in heaven.”
So according to Jesus’ own words, the experience of God’s grace for the salvation of many, including Zacchaeus and the disciples/apostles of Christ, had already taken place in the gospels, well before the cross.
Joseph Prince by asserting that no one, including Christ’s disciples/apostles is saved during Jesus’ earthly ministry before the cross, is not only a direct and blunt contradiction to the words of Jesus, but it is also tantamount to making, Jesus, who is God the Son, a liar.
How can Joseph Prince be said to be Christ-centred when he has such unholy guts to go head-on against the plain teaching of Jesus? This shows that Prince is more anti-Christ than Pro-Christ.
Friends, let it be known that Joseph Prince, who is anti-Christ, isn’t teaching the real Jesus of the Bible. He, being a wolf in sheepskin, is unveiling his own version of Jesus – the counterfeit Jesus.
The teaching of Jesus in Luke 10:20, Luke 19:9, John 15:3 and the scripture in Hebrews 12:23, simply means that if anyone, including the disciples/apostles of Christ and Zacchaeus, were to die from the point of their faith commitment to Jesus even before the death of Jesus at the cross, he would stand to inherit the promise of eternal life that is already bestowed by Jesus.
Conversely, the grotesque implication of Joseph Prince’s false teaching is that since no one, including the disciples/apostles of Christ could be saved because Jesus hadn’t died for them on the cross – and if any one of them were to die before Christ was crucified for them on the cross, they would have died as unsaved unbelievers and would have been banished to hell.
This is unthinkable!
Last, but not least, if we go by Joseph Prince’s argument, we would end up with a ridiculous and false conclusion – that all Old Testament saints were not saved because Jesus hadn’t died yet when all of them died.
Put it in another way – going by Joseph Prince’s argument that those during Jesus’ earthly ministry weren’t saved as Jesus hadn’t died for them on the cross, all the Old Testament saints who had all died before Christ had the chance to die for them, would mean that these Old Testament saints would be headed for hell because Christ had not died on the cross for them in their time.
If Joseph Prince now realises the utter folly of his salvation doctrine and if he is now forced to change his stance and say that the Old Testament saints are saved, then, by the same token, he has no right to assert that the disciples/apostles of Jesus weren’t born again during Jesus’ time because Christ had not yet died for them.
Thus, Joseph Prince’s claim and lie that the disciples/apostles of Christ could only be saved after Jesus had died for them on the cross is resoundingly refuted.
Finally, let me reiterate that Joseph Prince is effectively making Christ, who is God Himself, a liar, when he contradicted Jesus’ words by his teaching that no one can be saved before the cross, during the 3 years of Jesus’ earthly ministry.
Making God (Christ Jesus) a liar must have been one of the worst sins of humankind. And unimaginably – this is committed by Joseph Prince, the so-called grace teacher, who has influenced much of the Christian world with his grace doctrine.
Imagine the massive amount of deception that has befallen upon God’s people! And yet, the leaders of the Singapore Church are still keeping mum about it as if nothing has happened!
(Don’t miss the next article which is a sequel to this write-up. It will address one of Joseph Prince’s worst heresies – that Jesus in the gospels was operating under the Old Covenant of Law and not under the New Covenant of Grace.
Think about the implication of this horrendous doctrinal error – that if Joseph Prince was right, then all of Jesus’ (who is God Himself) teachings and His words in the gospels can be ignored and disregarded as they are no longer applicable to New Covenant believers.)
Rev George Ong