January 26, 2010

Al Martin’s Agreement With John Murray On The Free Offer

Richard Mayhue reports the following about Al Martin's differences with the later John Gerstner, who rejected the well-meant offer:
In a letter dated September 12, 1991, the Elders of Trinity Baptist Church in Montville, New Jersey, pastored by Al Martin, himself a staunch proclaimer of Reformed doctrine, disavow Dr. Gerstner's teaching on the atonement beginning on p. 118 and continuing through p. 131. They write that, "Dr. Gerstner strays from the mainstream of historic Calvinistic teaching regarding the free offer of the Gospel." This disclaimer letter comes with every copy of Dr. Gerstner's book that they distribute. A review of Dr. Gerstner's work by Reformation Today seriously questions his discussion of total depravity, election, and irresistible grace as it relates to his analysis of dispensational thought.6
6. Tom Wells, "Wrongly Dividing the Word of Truth: A Critique of Dispensationalism: A Review," Reformation Today 125 (Jan–Feb 1992): 25–32.
Richard L. Mayhue, "Who Is Wrong? A Review of John Gerstner's Wrongly Dividing the Word of Truth," in The Master's Perspective on Contemporary Issues, ed. Robert L. Thomas (Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel, 1998), 2:62.

Another has reported the content of this letter as follows:
Trinity Book Service (of Reformed Baptist Al Martin’s church) sends a warning with Gerstner’s book that includes the following: “Dr. Gerstner strays from the mainstream of historic Calvinism regarding the free offer of the gospel. . . . [W]e cannot endorse his treatment of the subject of the atonement as it relates to the free offer of the gospel. We in fact commend the writing of Stonehouse and Murray on the Free Offer of the Gospel.
The same goes with Walter Chantry (see here and here) and Erroll Hulse. They are all influential Reformed Baptists who agree with John Murray's view that God desires the salvation of all men in the revealed will.

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