Sep 09, 2010
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Salvation Summary

By grace, through faith...

 

First and foremost, we will stick with the Bible for everything we believe.

John 1:1

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

NASU

HEB 4:12

12 For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.

NASU

And we must be on guard for religion and tradition being our guide for Truth!

John 1:12-13

12 But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even  to those who believe in His name, 13 who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.

NASU

As we will see, Salvation is entirely a work of God, not of man or of religious practices.

                

Secondly, humility is required…

Acts 8:30-31

30 And when Philip had run up, he heard him reading Isaiah the prophet, and said, "Do you understand what you are reading?" 31 And he said, "Well, how could I, unless someone guides me?" And he invited Philip to come up and sit with him.

Every one of us who knows anything about scripture had to at one point say “how could I, unless someone guides me?”

The eunuch was reading his Bible, but he needed someone to guide him to a deeper understanding.  We all do.

At the age of 23, I didn’t even know the Bible was the Word of God, until I finally submitted myself to the teachings of my Pastor-teacher.

And every excellent Pastor-teacher started somewhere.  They at one point knew very little about the Bible, but they humbly said “how could I, unless someone guides me?”

Every good Pastor had to humbly learn and grow.  And every good Pastor continues to stay humble and learn and grow, because nobody ever knows it all in this life.

After all, God is looking for the faith of a child.  MAT 18:1-6
 

In JAM 4:6, God gives grace to the humble. 

James 4:6-10

6 But He gives a greater grace. Therefore it says, "GOD IS OPPOSED TO THE PROUD, BUT GIVES GRACE TO THE HUMBLE." 7 Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. 8 Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded. 9 Be miserable and mourn and weep; let your laughter be turned into mourning and your joy to gloom. 10 Humble yourselves in the presence of the Lord, and He will exalt you.

NASU

I pray that right now you all are open to this teaching of the Word of God today.

Let's allow the Holy Spirit to guide us today, through His marvelous Word.  John 4:24

Let’s start in John 3.

John 3:16-18

16 "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.  17 "For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him.  18 " He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

NASU


A. Salvation is by Grace, Through Faith in Christ.

   1.  Faith is the only system of perception, which is totally apart from any human merit.  Only the object of faith has merit, and in salvation the object of our faith must be the Lord Jesus Christ. 

How much faith does it take to be saved?  Just a little bit more than no faith at all, as little as a mustard seed, the smallest seed on the earth.  MAT 13:31

   2.  The salvation work of Christ on the cross excludes
anything being added to faith.  No works of any kind are allowed.  Salvation is by grace through faith, "not of works, lest any man should boast," EPH 2:9, 2Tim 1:9, Titus 3:4-7, GAL 2:16.

 

EPH 2:8-9

8 For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; 9 not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.

NASU

2 Tim 1:9

…who has saved us, and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was granted us in Christ Jesus from all eternity,

do you believe that?

As men of God, we must be clear about our great hope of salvation!  Acts 4:12, JOH 14:6

Titus 3:4-7

 4 But when the kindness of God our Savior and His love for mankind appeared, 5 He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit, 6 whom He poured out upon us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, 7 so that being justified by His grace we would be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life

NASU

GAL 2:16

16 nevertheless knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the Law but through faith in Christ Jesus, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, so that we may be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the Law; since by the works of the Law no flesh will be justified.

NASU


   3.  Grace is all that God is free to do for unsaved mankind; on the basis of the saving work of Christ on the cross.

Grace is extended to humans as unbelievers (such as Hindus, Muslims, Mormons, JWs, animists, or athiests), as they are living under spiritual death in total depravity and total helplessness regarding salvation.
 

Why is God in His holiness free to now touch a sinner?

Can anyone tell me?

In HAB 1:13 God can’t even look upon sin!  But…

Because the judgment has already been made, the price has been paid for our sins by the only One who could please God; Jesus Christ.

4.     Therefore, as a matter of grace, salvation is entirely
the work of God.
  It is the work of the Father in judging our sins, of the Son in being judged for our sins, and of the Holy Spirit in common and efficacious grace. 

This is why the way of salvation is faith in Jesus Christ, and faith alone with no works added to it.

B.  Salvation is by Faith in Christ, plus Nothing Else!

There are three reasons for FAITH PLUS NOTHING as the condition for eternal salvation.
 

1.     Efficacious grace, documented by EPH 2:8-9.
 

EPH 2:8-9 "For you have been saved by grace through faith, and this [salvation] is not from yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest any man should boast."


   2.  Our Lord's statement on the cross:  "TETELESTAI."

In JOH 19:30 the Lord said “It is finished!”

It is in the Greek perfect tense, which means it is finished in the past, with results that goes on forever!

That is the greatness and completeness of the Lord’s payment for our sins on the Cross.

   3.  The direct statement of Scripture.



C.  Efficacious Grace.

   1.  Efficacious grace fits into the pattern of faith alone.
When the spiritually dead person responds to the divine call or invitation to eternal salvation, he simply responds by believing in Jesus Christ. 

This is classified as faith alone or faith plus nothing.

        a.  When the spiritually dead person simply believes in Christ,  God the Holy Spirit causes that faith to be EFFECTIVE for eternal life.  This is classified as efficacious grace, or the doctrine of effectual faith. 

        b.  The faith of the spiritually dead person indicates positive volition (free will) towards the gospel, and only by a non-meritorious function which is compatible with grace.  (no merit or credit can be taken for having faith, anyone can have faith)


        c.  But because the spiritually dead person who believes in Christ is powerless, his faith is ineffective without the ministry of the Holy Spirit.
 

You don’t see a dead person raise his own hand, but if God raises his hand for him, then God has acted for the person.


        d.  So, in efficacious grace, God causes faith to be effective for salvation!

        e.  However, no works can be added to that faith. The Holy Spirit can only make faith and faith alone effective for salvation! 

If human works are added to faith for salvation, then the faith is no longer simply trusting in Christ, it is trusting in SELF.

Self cannot save self.  A sinner cannot save himself.

Only Christ has the power and merit to save us.

        f.  Works added to faith in Christ are dead works, and the Holy Spirit does not make dead works effective for salvation.   HEB 6:1; HEB 9:14.

HEB 6:1

Therefore leaving the elementary teaching about the Christ, let us press on to maturity, not laying again a foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God,

NASU

HEB 9:13-15

13 For if the blood of goats and bulls and the ashes of a heifer sprinkling those who have been defiled sanctify for the cleansing of the flesh, 14 how much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without blemish to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?

15 For this reason He is the mediator of a new covenant, so that, since a death has taken place for the redemption of the transgressions that were committed under the first covenant, those who have been called may receive the promise of the eternal inheritance.

NASU

So if you added any works when you believed in Jesus Christ, you were not saved at that point.  If you add anything to faith, God the Holy Spirit won't touch it, and so there is no efficacious grace. 

Either it’s by grace or it’s not by grace!  ROM 11:6

ROM 11:6

But if it is by grace, it is no longer on the basis of works, otherwise grace is no longer grace.

NASU

The very definition of grace requires no work be added. 

        g.  The omnipotence of the Holy Spirit will make effectual ONLY faith in Jesus Christ.

        h.  The sequence of the pre-salvation grace ministry of God is as follows.

                 (1)  In common grace, the Holy Spirit makes the Gospel message understandable to a spiritually dead person.

They have no ability to have a relationship with God.

They have no power to approach God, and no power to satisfy Him.

               But God the Holy Spirit reaches out to all people without bias…

                 (2)  God the Father invites the spiritually dead person to believe in Christ, which is called the divine call.
 

This call is given by God the Father to every member of the human race before they die.  That is the faithfulness and fairness of God.


                 (3)  The spiritually dead person believes in Christ, and the Holy Spirit causes faith to be effective for salvation, which is called efficacious grace.

          i.  Again, when any works are added to faith in Christ, the omnipotence of the Holy Spirit will not cause that faith to be effective. 

The reason is because divine omnipotence and human power cannot operate together.

Either you rely on God to save you, or you rely on yourself.

          j.  Consequently, human works added to faith in Christ cancels faith.  It’s not faith in Him, it’s faith in self! 

Human works are done by human power, which is rejected by God’s plan of grace.  ISA 64:6, ROM 11:6

ISA 64:6

For all of us have become like one who is unclean,

And all our righteous deeds are like a filthy garment;

And all of us wither like a leaf,

And our iniquities, like the wind, take us away.

NASU
 

ROM 11:6

“But if it is by grace, it is no longer on the basis of works, otherwise grace is no longer grace.”


   2.  EPH 2:8-9 supports salvation by faith alone.  "For you have been saved by grace through faith, and this [salvation] is not from yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest any man should boast."

            a.  Both grace (CHARIS) and faith (PISTIS) are in the feminine gender.

            b.  Then follows the peritactic KAI, translated "and," which is used to coordinate expressions which have no syntactical relationship in the Greek. (remember that)

            c.  The neuter gender of the immediate demonstrative pronoun HOUTOS cannot refer to either grace or faith.  "And this" refers to salvation in general.

            d.  "This [salvation] is not from yourselves" because it is the grace ministry of the Holy Spirit. 

We are born spiritually dead, meaning we are under total depravity, total separation from God, and total helplessness to do anything about it. 

ROM 3:10-12

as it is written,

"THERE IS NONE RIGHTEOUS, NOT EVEN ONE;

THERE IS NONE WHO UNDERSTANDS,

THERE IS NONE WHO SEEKS FOR GOD;

ALL HAVE TURNED ASIDE, TOGETHER THEY HAVE BECOME USELESS;

THERE IS NONE WHO DOES GOOD,

THERE IS NOT EVEN ONE."

ROM 3:22-24

This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.

EPH 2:1-3

And you were dead in your trespasses and sins, 2 in which you formerly walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience. 3 Among them we too all formerly lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest.

NASU

               So salvation is not by works, so that no man can boast…

That’s why it says we are justified “freely” in ROM 3:24.

 

Now let’s talk about Ritual Works.

Some religions try to add rituals as a requirement to salvation.  They say you are not saved unless you obey certain rituals!!

Can you imagine that?!  I thought the reason Jesus came was to save us!

What if Jesus added rituals as a requirement for the salvation of the thief on the cross?

Luke 23:39-43

39 One of the criminals who were hanged there was hurling abuse at Him, saying, "Are You not the Christ? Save Yourself and us!" 40 But the other answered, and rebuking him said, "Do you not even fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? 41 "And we indeed are suffering justly, for we are receiving what we deserve for our deeds; but this man has done nothing wrong." 42 And he was saying, "Jesus, remember me when You come in Your kingdom!" 43 And He said to him, "Truly I say to you, today you shall be with Me in Paradise." 

NASU

To add rituals or works as a requirement for salvation is against the principle of being saved by grace, through faith alone in Christ, as the Bible teaches.

Ritual worksinclude water baptism, circumcision, or the observation of the Eucharist as a condition for salvation!  Turn to 1Co 1.

Most common in this category is “baptismal regeneration” or salvation through faith plus water baptism.

         The ministry of the Holy Spirit in efficacious grace makes faith in Jesus Christ and faith alone effective for salvation.

         If water baptism were a requirement of salvation, to receive eternal life, then why would Paul say he was not sent to baptize?

1CO 1:17  for Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel, not in cleverness of speech, that the cross of Christ should not be made void. 

 

If water baptism were REQUIRED for salvation, do you think the apostle Paul would have said this?

A lot of clever evangelists obscure the cross.  They take away the simplicity and purity of salvation being a gift, received by faith.

Even the thief on the cross was saved, but he had no opportunity to be baptized.

Is there anything wrong with water baptism?  No.

Can it be used especially for new converts, to solidify their personal faith, and teach people how they are now a new creature in Christ?  I believe so.

The vital issue in salvation is "what do you think of Christ? Whose Son do you say He is??"  MAT 16:16; MAT 22:42.

The issue in salvation is NOT…

How many sins will you give up? 

What commitment will you make? 

How will you change your life from now on?

 

Just give them the GOOD NEWS, freely!

And the emphasis of the gospel is "what do you think about Christ"?  Not water baptism! Not rituals!

Those that believe in “baptismal regeneration” as a REQUIREMENT for salvation often quote the following:

Acts 2:38

Peter said to them, " Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.

First of all, the command to repent (change your mind- metanoeoin Greek) is not about sin, or water baptism, but repenting about Jesus Christ, whom was crucified (Acts 2:36).

 

Second, water baptism came following the decision to repent about the Christ; it was a symbol of the baptism of the Holy Spirit, which takes place at the moment of faith in Christ.  1CO 12:13, EPH 4:5

1 Cor 12:13

For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body, whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free, and we were all made to drink of one Spirit.

NASU

EPH 4:4-5

There is one body and one Spirit, just as also you were called in one hope of your calling;  one Lord, one faith, one baptism,

NASU

Just as Philip baptized the eunuch AFTER the eunuch had faith in Jesus Christ.  He was already saved by his faith in Christ.  Acts 8:34-36

In the early church, the New Testament was not written yet, they had no scripture about the baptism of the Holy Spirit that we see in 1CO 12:13;

So water baptism was a RITUAL used to teach the REALITY of the baptism of the Spirit, the truly important baptism.

“Baptismal regeneration” is the false teaching that man MUST be baptized in water to be regenerated or born again, and this is not true. 

Man is regenerated and born of the Spirit the moment of his personal faith in Jesus as Lord and Savior, just like the thief on the cross.

All you have to do is read your Bible in context.

There are times the Bible appears to say something, but if you keep reading your Bibles you will see the big picture.

And regarding salvation, you will see all the clear and direct verses that say salvation is by faith alone in Jesus Christ as God and Savior.

 

Let’s remember, all ritual involves human motion, human volition and human action in a meritorious sense.

That means man can take credit for performing a ritual.

(Someone who performed the ritual can say “I did it, but you did not”)

That is taking credit.  That is subtly trying to EARN salvation.

And water baptism is a ritual in which someone must actually DO something.  Since that goes beyond faith, then it cannot be a part of salvation itself.

Rituals have certain purposes, but "doing" in a ritual always depends upon “knowing” first, and the secret of rituals throughout the Old Testament was the fact that they "understood" the meaning before they did.

So here we have a ritual being added to the gospel as the means of salvation!  And that is wrong.

And the word repent in Acts 2:38 is used for a very simple reason, these people were Jews, and these Jews have come from all over all the world.

They have been the recipients of the gospel under supernatural conditions and they are still holding back even though they are convicted, and so they say.....what must we DO?

Acts 2:36-37

36 "Therefore let all the house of Israel know for certain that God has made Him both Lord and Christ —  this Jesus whom you crucified."

37 Now when they heard this, they were pierced to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, "Brethren, what shall we do?"

 

And Peter says…. “Repent”… which means to change your mind.

And if they change their minds about Jesus Christ, then believing becomes automatic.

You cannot repent without believing.   And you cannot believe without repenting.

Often the word REPENT is used when Jews are involved, and when the Gentiles are involved the word BELIEVE is used.

So in Acts 2:37, the Jews ask a question, what shall we do?

In Acts 16:30, a Gentile says, what must I do to be saved?

And in each case an answer is given,

in Acts 2:38, Peter says repent,

in Acts 16:31, Paul says believe.

Now what's the difference?

They are very similar.  They both involve turning to the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation.

To the Gentile, “believe” is simpler because they have no previous biblical information.

But the Jews would “repent”, or “change their mind”, because they already had a wrong belief about Jesus as the Christ.

Now how do we know that water baptism is NOT required for salvation in Acts 2:38?

Well it is the original Greek language that reveals to us the true meaning of the passage, as is often the case.

And so the best way to translate Acts 2:38 would be,all of you repent [2nd person plural] and [kai] then after that let each one of you be baptized.” [3rd person singular].

(It should be translated this way due to a syntactical break in the Greek)

In the Greek, when you change the Person and the Number in the verb, you have a Syntactical Break, which means that THE SECOND VERB IS NOT A REQUIREMENT OF THE FIRST.

And so in Acts 2:38, the second verb “be baptized” is not a requirement of the first verb “repent”.

Christian water baptism is the ritual testimony of the baptism of the Holy Spirit. 

Water baptism was commanded to teach the principle of the baptism of the Holy Spirit at salvation.  It can be a wonderful teaching aide, as Jesus commanded them to baptize new believers in MAT 28:19.

All through the book of Acts, water baptism was a symbol of one’s change of faith, of one’s turning to Jesus as Lord and Savior.

Especially when a person is coming from another faith, such as Hinduism, or animism, water baptism can help someone confirm their new faith in Christ, making it clear they have changed their mind, for themselves and for others to see.

But of course, water baptism should never become a means of dividing believers in 1CO 1:10-17.  And it is not required for someone to be saved.

1 Cor 1:10-17

10 Now I exhort you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all agree and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be made complete in the same mind and in the same judgment. 11 For I have been informed concerning you, my brethren, by Chloe's people, that there are quarrels among you. 12 Now I mean this, that each one of you is saying, "I am of Paul," and "I of Apollos," and "I of Cephas," and "I of Christ." 13 Has Christ been divided? Paul was not crucified for you, was he? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul? 14 I thank God that I baptized none of you except Crispus and Gaius, 15 so that no one would say you were baptized in my name. 16 Now I did baptize also the household of Stephanas; beyond that, I do not know whether I baptized any other. 17 For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel, not in cleverness of speech, so that the cross of Christ would not be made void.

 

Especially before the New Testament was written to explain the baptism of the Holy Spirit (1CO 12:13, Romans 6), and identification with Christ in his death and burial and resurrection, water baptism was used to represent what had happened spiritually, at salvation.

But again, water baptism is not the way someone receives eternal life, that is by faith alone in the Messiah.

Let’s look at Acts 10, which dogmatically refutes baptismal regeneration.

Acts 10:44-48

While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit fell upon all those who were listening to the message.  All the circumcised believers who came with Peter were amazed, because the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out on the Gentiles also.  For they were hearing them speaking with tongues and exalting God. Then Peter answered,  " Surely no one can refuse the water for these to be baptized who have received the Holy Spirit just as we did, can he?"  And he ordered them to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ.

Notice, these new believers had already received the Holy Spirit before water baptism.  They were already saved by faith in Christ.

Now of course there are other passages used by these people who add to salvation and insult the grace of God.

For example, let’s look at Mark 16.

MAR 16:15-16  “and he said to them, go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation; he who has believed and has been baptized shall be saved; but he who has disbelieved shall be condemned”

Please notice that it doesn't say he that hasn’t been baptized will be condemned, just he who hasn’t believed!

It’s He that “believes not” that shall be condemned, as we also see in JOH 3:18,36.

And so baptism is omitted in the second part of vs. 16, because baptism is not a requirement for salvation.

And there's another principle concerning this passage.

If you have a good Bible you will find that beginning with MAR 16:9 there is a parenthesis which is actually closed in MAR 16:20, because all of these verses are not even found in the original manuscripts of scripture.

Mark 16 actually ends at verse 8.

Codex aleph and Codex b are the two most ancient and most accurate of all manuscripts and they end with verse 8.

And by the way, if you look at Mark 16 verses 17 and 18, that's where they get the handling of snakes and drinking poison, but this is NOT FOUND in most original manuscripts.

However, this passage is used by those who try to add water baptism to salvation.

 

And so failure to distinguish between Spirit’s baptism and water baptism, and failure to understand all the clear scriptures that reveal salvation is by faith alone....all of these things add up to a false teaching.

These people might be sincere, but they are wrong in regards to the scriptural truth if they say water baptism is required to go to heaven.

You should never let anyone deceive you by adding anything whatsoever to faith alone in Christ alone for salvation.

The Church Age is written about in the epistles (letters) of the New Testament, where the “mystery doctrine” is revealed, mostly by the apostle Paul. 

This mystery was not even known by the apostles in Jesus’ day!

 

The Church Age, especially after the completion of the canon of scripture, has different procedures from God.  (1CO 13:10, ROM 16:25, EPH 3:3,4,9, 5:32)

And in these letters to the Church Age believers, if water baptism were required for salvation, the apostle Paul would have made it clear, and not said what he did in 1Co.

1 Cor 1:14-17

14 I thank God that I baptized none of you except Crispus and Gaius, 15 so that no one would say you were baptized in my name. 16 Now I did baptize also the household of Stephanas; beyond that, I do not know whether I baptized any other. (would he have said that if baptism was required for salvation?)17 For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel, not in cleverness of speech, so that the cross of Christ would not be made void.

 

According to Paul there is only one important baptism:

                   EPH 4:5

one Lord, one faith, one baptism;

If there is only one baptism for the Church Age; which one do you think it is?  And which one do you want?!  Water baptism or the baptism of the Holy Spirit?

Again there is nothing wrong with water baptism.  Just do not falsely teach it is required to go to heaven!

 

The same apostle Peter who spoke in Acts 2:38 tells us later in his Church Age letters…

1 Peter 3:21

Corresponding to that, baptism now saves you —  not the removal of dirt from the flesh (clearly a reference to water baptism),but an appeal to God for a good conscience (a spiritual issue)

This is a reference to baptism by the Holy Spirit, not water baptism, which would include removal of dirt from the flesh.

The Spirit’s baptism is the one baptism required for salvation, which occurs immediately and automatically at the moment of faith alone in Christ alone, by God’s grace.

1 Cor 12:13

For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body, whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free, and we were all made to drink of one Spirit.

 

Even Jesus Himself, after He rose from the grave, told the apostles…

Acts 1:5

for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now." 

 

The thief on the cross was never said to be baptized with water.  He simply believed in Him on the cross, and that faith alone saved him, as Jesus said “today” he would be with Him in Paradise.  (LUK 23:43)

And Old Testament saints were never baptized, but they were saved by faith alone in the future coming of the Messiah, God in the flesh. GEN 15:6, ROM 4:1

Abraham was saved by faith alone, even though the Jews thought one had to be circumcised to be saved. 

Circumcision was a ‘sign’ of their belief, but it was not the ‘means’ of their salvation.  (The same with water baptism)

This is an excellent Old Testament analogy to baptism, and how water baptism was a ‘sign’ of the cleansing and salvation that takes place at the moment of faith in Christ.

               ROM 4:1-13

4:1 What then shall we say that Abraham, our forefather according to the flesh, has found?

2 For if Abraham was justified by works, he has something to boast about; but not before God.

3 For what does the Scripture say? "ABRAHAM BELIEVED GOD, AND IT WAS CREDITED TO HIM AS RIGHTEOUSNESS."

4 Now to the one who works, his wage is not credited as a favor, but as what is due.

5 But to the one who does not work, but believes in Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is credited as righteousness, (faith is not a work, Gal 2, Rom 5)

6 just as David also speaks of the blessing on the man to whom God credits righteousness apart from works:

7 "BLESSED ARE THOSE WHOSE LAWLESS DEEDS HAVE BEEN FORGIVEN, AND WHOSE SINS HAVE BEEN COVERED.

8 "BLESSED IS THE MAN WHOSE SIN THE LORD WILL NOT TAKE INTO ACCOUNT."  

9 Is this blessing then on the circumcised, or on the uncircumcised also? For we say, "FAITH WAS CREDITED TO ABRAHAM AS RIGHTEOUSNESS."

10 How then was it credited? While he was circumcised, or uncircumcised? Not while circumcised, but while uncircumcised;

11 and he received the sign of circumcision, a seal of the righteousness of the faith which he had while uncircumcised, so that he might be the father of all who believe without being circumcised, that righteousness might be credited to them,

12 and the father of circumcision to those who not only are of the circumcision, but who also follow in the steps of the faith of our father Abraham which he had while uncircumcised. 13 For the promise to Abraham or to his descendants that he would be heir of the world was not through the Law, but through the righteousness of faith.

ROM 4:16

16 For this reason it is by faith, that it might be in accordance with grace, in order that the promise may be certain to all the descendants, not only to those who are of the Law, but also to those who are of the faith of Abraham, who is the father of us all,

 

Thank God He gives us plain direct language about our salvation being by faith and grace, and not by our deeds. 

Titus 3:4-7

4 But when the kindness of God our Savior and His love for mankind appeared,

5 He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit,

6 whom He poured out upon us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior,

7 so that being justified by His grace we would be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.

GAL 2:16

“nevertheless knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the Law but through faith in Christ Jesus, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, that we may be justified by faith in Christ, and not by the works of the Law; since by the works of the Law shall no flesh be justified.

We cannot add anything to God’s grace, otherwise grace is no longer grace. (ROM 4:16; ROM 11:6

And only by faith can we accept the grace gift of God, because faith alone is not a work. (EPH 2:8-9)

Water baptism can be a good teaching tool, but it is NOT REQUIRED to be saved and go to heaven!

We must not add to the grace gift of God received by simple trusting faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.

Let’s see what the scriptures say about salvation being by faith alone in Christ alone…

 

The Direct Statement of Scripture.

    1.  Jn 1:12  “But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name,”


    2.  Jn 3:15, "That everyone who believes in Him may have eternal life."

    3.  Jn 3:16, "For God loved the world so much that He gave His Son, the unique One, in order that anyone who believes in Him shall never perish[eternal security] but have eternal life."

    4.  Jn 3:18, "He who believes in Him [Christ] is not judged, but he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the unique person of the Son of God." 

*Notice believe is repeated three times in this verse; no works are added to believe.

    5.  Jn 3:36, "He who believes in the Son has eternal life, but he who does not believe in the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him." 

 

*The issue in salvation is that you either believe in Christ once, or you do not believe.

    6.  Jn 6:40 "For this is the will of My Father, that everyone who beholds the Son and believes in Him will have eternal life, and I Myself will raise him up on the last day."   Jn 6:47, "Truly, truly, I say to you:  he who believes in Me has eternal life."

    7.  Jn 11:25, "Jesus said to her [Martha], `I am the resurrection and the life.  He who believes in Me shall live, even if he dies.'"

    8.  Jn 11:26, "And everyone who lives and believes in Me shall never die." 

 

*You have to believe while you're alive; there is no second chance after you die.

 

9.  Jn 16:8-9, "When He [Holy Spirit] comes, He will convince [convict] the world concerning sin; concerning sin, because they do not believe in Me." 

This compares with the unpardonable sin and the sin of blasphemy of the Spirit in MAR 3:28-29, Matt 12:31-32.

        a.  Our personal sins are not the issue in salvation.  They were an issue at the cross, and Jesus Christ was already judged for every one of them.

        b.  Therefore, the Holy Spirit, who convicts us with regard to salvation, never convicts us with regard to our personal sins.  The one sin He convicts us of is the only sin for which Christ could not die:  the sin of rejection of Christ, the sin of unbelief. 

 

Only “deeds” are judged; for believers for rewards, 1CO 3:11-15, 2CO 5:10, and for unbelievers to condemnation, REV 20:11-15

    10.  Jn 20:31, "But these have been written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you might have life through His person."

  11.  Acts 16:31, "Believeon the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved; and if anyone in your household believes in Christ, they too are saved." 

*Notice that the command is to believe; nothing is added to it.
 

12.     GAL 3:26, "For you are all the children of God [royal family] by faith in Christ Jesus." 

*Notice that nothing is added to faith.

  13.   ROM 1:16, "I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ, because it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first, also to the Gentile." 

 

Everyone is saved the same way, both Jew and Gentile.  They are saved, not by keeping the Law, but only by believing in Christ.

  14.  ROM 3:20-22, "Because by the works of the Law no flesh will be justified in His sight, for through the Law is the knowledge of sin.  But now, apart from the Law, the righteousness of God has been manifested, being witnessed by the Law and the prophets [Old Testament], even the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all those who believe."

  15.  ROM 3:28, "For we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from the works of the Law."

  16.  ROM 4:4-5, "Now to the one who works for salvation, his wages are calculated, not on the basis of grace, but on the basis of debt.  But to him who does not work for salvation, but believes in Him who justifies the
ungodly, his faith receives credit for righteousness."

  17.  ROM 4:14, "For if those who by means of the Law are heirs, then faith has been made void, and the promises have been canceled."

  18.  GAL 2:16, "Nevertheless, knowing that a [spiritually dead] person is not justified by the works of the Law, but through faith in Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Christ Jesus that we might be justified by faith in Christ, and not by the works of the Law; because by the works of the Law no flesh shall be justified."

  19.  How are we justified in the eyes of God? 

ROM 5:1, "Therefore, being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ."

  20.  EPH 2:8-9, "For you have been saved by grace through faith, and this [salvation] is not from yourselves, it is a gift of God; not of works lest any man should boast."

        a.  The only way of salvation is one act of personal faith in Jesus Christ, with nothing added to it.

        b.  To add to faith in Christ for salvation is no salvation at all.  If when you believe in Christ, you are depending upon something else besides faith in Christ, you are not saved. 

  21.  Phil 3:9, "And may be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own derived from the Law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which comes from God on the basis of faith."

  22.  2 Tim 3:15, "And that from childhood, you have known the Holy Scriptures which are able to give you wisdom that leads to salvation through faith, which is in Christ Jesus."

  23.  Even if you later renounce your faith in Christ, you are still saved, because God is faithful, and He cannot deny Himself (He lives inside you).

 

2 Tim 2:11-13, "Faithful is the Word, for if we have died with Christ[and we have!  retroactive positional truth], we shall also live with Christ. 

If we endure[suffering for blessing], we shall reign with Him. If we deny Him, He will deny us [escrow blessings for time and eternity]. 

If we do not believe[after we're saved], He remains faithful; He cannot deny Himself." 

God the Father cannot deny the indwelling of the Trinity in you!

And many passages reveal that eternal rewards are released to the believer who endures as a disciple.

2Tim 4:7-8, Rev 2&3, 1CO 3:11-15

2 Tim 4:7-8

I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith; 8 in the future there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day; and not only to me, but also to all who have loved His appearing.


  24.  1 Jn 5:11-13, "And this is the deposition:  that God has given to us eternal life, and this life is in His Son.  He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son does not have life.  These things I have written to you who believe in the person of the Son of God, in order that
you may know that you have eternal life."

  25.  Salvation is said to be BY GRACE.

        a.  ROM 3:24, "Being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus." 

          Grace excludes human works.

       b.  ROM 4:4-5, "Now to the one who works for salvation, his wages are credited, not on the basis of grace, but on the basis of debt. But to him who does not work for salvation, but believes in Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is credited for righteousness."

        c.  ROM 4:16, "For this reason, it is by means of faith, in order that it might be on the basis of grace."

        d.  ROM 5:1-2, "Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we also have obtained an introduction by faith into this grace in which we stand."

        e.  ROM 5:15, "But the free gift of salvation is not like the transgression.  For if by the transgression of one man [Adam] many died [spiritual death], much more did the grace of God and the gift by grace of that one man, Jesus Christ, abound to many."

        f.  ROM 5:17, "For if by the transgression of one [Adam], [spiritual] death reigned through one [Adam], much more those who have received the abundance of grace, and the gift of righteousness will reign in life through that one, Jesus Christ.

        g.  EPH 1:6-7, "Resulting in the praise of the glory of His grace, by which grace He has graced us out in the beloved, in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins according to the riches of His grace."

        h.  2 Tim 1:8-9, "Therefore, do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord or of his prisoners, to join with me in suffering with reference to the Gospel on the basis of the power of God [doctrine of common grace], who saved us and called us with a holy calling [divine call], not according to our works, but according to His own purpose in grace which He has given to us in Christ Jesus from all eternity past."

        i.  HEB 2:9, "We see Jesus, made a little lower than angels, for the sake of the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, that He, by the grace of God, might taste death as a substitute for all."

Without the grace of God, none of us would be saved.

And we can only receive God's grace through faith in the work of Jesus Christ on the cross.

Acts 16:31 “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you shall be saved, you and your household.”