Wednesday, March 25, 2015

What Is Believing Unto Salvation?

Temple Baptist Church - 3-25-2015
1 John 5:1-5
A. Every time I read this verse, I think of Dr. Harold B. Sightler who said, “More people will get to heaven on this verse than people think.”  I agree with him but this verse is not a “stand alone” verse.
B.  There is much confusion, even in the fundamental ranks, concerning salvation and arguments have arisen as good men try to protect the integrity of biblical salvation while refuting doctrinal heresy.  I am not going to answer every theological question that has or will arise but want to take a biblical look at this verse as to make it plain.
1.  Much of the confusion is because verses become of “private interpretation” to those either trying to build a doctrine or to protect one.  Once again, you can make the bible say almost anything that you want it to say by looking at one verse alone.
2.  John 3:16  For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.  (No mention of repentance; no prayer for salvation found here.  Yet, this verse is prefaced by an Old Testament example of salvation.  Bitten by a serpent, they were to look to the brazen serpent on the pole for healing.  A realization of sinfulness and looking to the sacrifice of Jesus Christ as full payment for that sin and eternal salvation.)
3.  Acts 8:36-37  And as they went on their way, they came unto a certain water: and the eunuch said, See, here is water; what doth hinder me to be baptized?  (37)  And Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.  (No mention of repentance; no prayer for salvation found here.  Yet, we see what brought the eunuch to Christ was a desire that led to seeking through his round trip of possible 2-3 thousand miles in a chariot.  His going on his way rejoicing as the desires of his heart had been met.  His life was forever changed.)
4.  Acts 16:30-31  And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved?  (31)  And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.  (Once again, no mention of repentance; no prayer for salvation mentioned.  Yet he came with fear and trembling and left with a changed life coupled with a desire to lead his family in the way of truth.)
C.  Is repentance necessary for salvation?  Absolutely!  Acts 20:21  Testifying both to the Jews, and also to the Greeks, repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.  (In the conversion of these two examples, we find that their faith in
D.  Is repentance a work?  Absolutely not!  Titus 3:5  Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;
E.  I believe that believing unto salvation involves biblical repentance.  You cannot separate them!  I often say that when I was saved, I brought a bankrupt sinner to Christ.  I was tired of where I was and wanted the Lord to save my ungodly soul and He did.
F.  Biblical repentance is a change of heart and mind that will bring about a change in desire and life. 
G.  James 2:17-24  Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone.  (18)  Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works.  (19)  Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.  (20)  But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead?  (21)  Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar?  (22)  Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect?  (23)  And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.  (24)  Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only. 
1.  There is a faith that will not save.  “Shew me thy faith without they works”  
a.  It is a belief in one God who is the only God.  Satan and his devils also believe in one God who is God!  It is a faith that is not accompanied by a change of life and the good works that always follow.   
b.  The problem is a lack of biblical repentance that accompanies saving faith.  No dissatisfaction with where one is and no desire for a change of life.
2.  There is a faith that will save.  “And I will shew thee my faith by my works”  In our text, we find that the saving faith in verse one is followed by a changed life accompanied by good works.
a.  In verse 1, we find that saving faith is accompanied with both a love for God and also a love for the brethren.  “and every one that loveth him that begat loveth him also that is begotten of him.”
b.  In verse 2, we find that saving faith is accompanied by obedience to God’s Word.  “By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments.”
c.  In verse 3, we find that saving faith is accompanied by a change in attitude concerning spiritual things.  “For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.” 
c.  In verse 4-5, we find that saving faith is accompanied by overcoming.  “For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.  Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?”
2 Corinthians 7:10  For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death.

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