Is it 'too late' for America to be spared God's judgment? John MacArthur gives warning

Pastor John MacArthur speaks at Grace Community Church's Shepherd's Conference in 2020.
Pastor John MacArthur speaks at Grace Community Church's Shepherd's Conference in 2020. | Facebook/Shepherds' Conference

California megachurch Pastor John MacArthur spoke about the possibility that the United States is already under judgment for its acceptance of progressive sexual ethics, among other things, during his Palm Sunday sermon.

MacArthur preached a sermon at Grace Community Church of Sun Valley titled “Chosen in Him,” mainly focused on Mark 12 and the passage commonly known as the Parable of the Vineyard Owner.

The parable speaks of a vineyard owner who allowed tenants to oversee his vineyard, only to have them take control of it and kill everyone the owner sent to collect on what they grew.

“What then will the owner of the vineyard do? He will come and kill those tenants and give the vineyard to others. Haven’t you read this passage of Scripture: ‘The stone the builders rejected has become the cornerstone; the Lord has done this, and it is marvelous in our eyes?’” concluded the parable, as rendered by the New International Version.

MacArthur said in his sermon that the parable was one of judgment, saying that “with this parable,” Jesus “pledges the destruction of Jerusalem and the nation.”

“Vengeance will come and it must come and it did,” said MacArthur, referring to the sacking of Jerusalem by the Roman Empire in AD 70, or about 40 years after Jesus was crucified.

“The temple was never rebuilt, the priesthood was never recovered. No sacrifices, no ceremonies, no Sadducees, no Pharisees, no priests, no chief priests to this day. The whole system ended.”

Throughout the sermon, MacArthur spoke about the times in the Bible when different figures, including the Prophet Isaiah of the Old Testament and the Apostle Paul of the New Testament, spoke about it being “too late” for some to be saved.

“Go tell them,” preached MacArthur, paraphrasing God’s call to Isaiah in Isaiah Chapter 6, “it’s too late. You wouldn’t listen, you wouldn’t see, you wouldn’t believe, and now you can’t.”

“Tell them it is too late. Judgment is already in motion.”

Near the end of his sermon, MacArthur addressed how he believed the passages about the parable and the notion of being “too late” to be saved applied to the modern church.

One lesson he felt was important was that “it can be for a generation of people too late. Too late for eighth century [BC] Israel, too late for first century [AD] Israel, but it can be too late for every nation.”

“How do you know when a nation passes the point where salvation is possible for a people?” asked MacArthur, who answered by citing Romans 1.

“When you see a nation deep in sexual sin, pervasively affirming of homosexuality, and the insanity of a reprobate mind, where they make laws to criminalize righteousness and to legalize gross evil, you know that nation’s under judgment,” said MacArthur.

MacArthur went on to state that “our message to this nation” is that “it’s too late for the nation, we’re under judgment,” but added that “it’s not too late for the elect.”

“What’s our message to this nation? You’re under judgment; it’s too late. Judgment has been unleashed. You can hear, but not understand. You can see, but not perceive,” he said.

“But God has His people. So we warn, because we don’t know who those people are and we also offer the grace of the Gospel. That’s our calling.”

MacArthur’s recent sermon echoed past comments by the controversial pastor and prolific author. For example, in 2011 at the Resolved Conference in Palm Springs, California, MacArthur said that the United States was “a nation in crisis in divine judgment.”

“I look at America … people say, 'What is wrong with this country?' That is what’s wrong with this country. Right there. They have rejected the Word, the law of the Lord, the Holy One Himself,” said MacArthur at the time.

“As somebody said a few years ago, if God doesn’t destroy America pretty soon, He’s going to have to apologize to Sodom and Gomorrah.”

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