The other side…

Hi Chris,

I used to consider myself a lordship salvation-ist until I realized that salvation is by faith alone through grace alone, not by works.
Submitting to the Lord essentially is a work, something WE DO to EARN salvation! Through this belief, one can never have assurance of their salvation because one can never know when or how they earned it!
I know they are a lot of well meaning Christians who believe it… but if that were the case then how did the thief on the cross get saved? Did he submit to Jesus as Lord by simply acknowledging him in his final moments? In that case, the meaning of ‘submitting as Lord’ becomes almost meaningless because it doesn’t require anything other than a simple acknowledgement. If it’s more than a simple acknowledgement.. then deathbed conversions become impossible!
I believe Lordship salvation may have been created to combat the idea that the carnal Christian is saved, but to attribute our salvation to anything but Jesus blood atonement is wrong! The gospel is so simple even a child is supposed to be able to understand it, another point against Lordship salvation, if intellectual giants like RC Sproul can’t figure out how to have assurance of their salvation, who can?
https://faithalone.org/journal/1997ii/Wilkin.html <– contains RC Sproul quote that he can not be certain about salvation
I believe a Christian can only lose their salvation if they choose to! <– my own belief
I believe people like Francis Chan, while good speakers, cheapen the gospel by saying you have to be some SUPER CHRISTIAN in order to be saved, like he does in his book Crazy Love.
[James 4:4] –  You adulterous people! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.
This is why anyone who is popular in the world needs to be under a microscope! For example popular people like Billy Graham, compromised the Gospel message to define all religious people as Christs people.. whether they knew him or not!
Here’s a good video on Billy Graham:
 
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Now, let’s take a look on where I disagree with Calvinism. 
 
T – total depravity – means man is so deprived that he doesn’t have the free-will to choose God or not to choose him!
 
I don’t believe this, I believe we all have free will to choose God or not choose him! Just because God knows the answer ahead of time doesn’t mean we don’t freely choose him or not! It’s also an assault on God’s character… is he so cruel to predestine people to hell, or is it their own rejection of God that sends them to hell? The Calvinist believes God predestines people to heaven and hell, and that there’s nothing they can do about it! I think God gives people a choice, but he knows the answer ahead of time. 
 
U – unconditional election –  same problem
 
L – limited atonement – same problem
 
I – irresistible grace  – Essentially says that God forces himself on people and when he does, they can not refuse him! Essentially this boils down to spiritual rape, which seems like another assault on God’s character. God gives us the ability to choose to love him or not!
 
P – perseverance of the saints – I can kind of agree with this, the problem is that it assumes those who choose to leave the body of Christ were never Christians to begin with! I believe you are saved, unless you choose not to be ie: you are saved unless you walk away from the Church/faith/denounce Christianity and become an atheist. They would argue that person was never a Christian to begin with!
 
If you want 2 good critiques of calvinism I would look here
 
 
2) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kqpa4SaHBxg&t=2139s – Why I am not a Calvinist by Robert Breaker
 
 
As always, let me know if you disagree with anything I am saying. I know that our Church and reformed theology may lean towards Calvinism and Lordship salvation. I believed in Lordship salvation until I realized it offers no assurance of salvation! 
 
The gospel message is simple, and we humans try to over-complicate things: 
 
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1 Corinthians 15:1-4 English Standard Version (ESV)

The Resurrection of Christ

15 Now I would remind you, brothers,[a] of the gospel I preached to you, which you received, in which you stand, and by which you are being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you—unless you believed in vain.

For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures,

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Romans 10:9 English Standard Version (ESV)

because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.

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For God So Loved the World

16 “For God so loved the world,[a] that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.

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The only thing we can do to be saved is to believe in Jesus blood atonement for our sins, past, present, and future! If you confess Jesus is Lord, and believe God raised him from the dead, you will be saved! To believe otherwise is to disbelieve God!
 
Before I end this, let’s look at the scary scripture in the bible, which is verse 21 on, but I am quoting the full context of the verse because it’s important.

A Tree and its Fruit
(Matthew 12:33-37; Luke 6:43-45)

15Beware of false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. 16By their fruit you will recognize them. Are grapes gathered from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? 17Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. 18A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. 19Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20So then, by their fruit you will recognize them.

21Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of My Father in heaven. 22Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?’ 23Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you workers of lawlessness.’

This verse is not supporting Lordship salvation! Rather, the opposite. Those who lack a relationship with Jesus and trusted in their works are being denied salvation here. 

 
As always, try not to blindly follow but develop your own opinion. If you think you convince me on either I am open to think about it.
 
In Him,
~Clay
 
P.S. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dpin_ZqIQO0

Signs that God wants me to give

  1. The same day I started giving to the Israel / Christian foundation, God performed a financial miracle for my room mate and I benefited from it
  2. The same day I fulfilled my tithe (and more), my Fiance got a job! 🙂
  3. …..Reserved for the future…..

Is My Child In Heaven?

Yes, there are even scriptures in the bible to sort of support the idea your child is in heaven.

[Matthew 18:3 ESV] [Matthew 19:14] [Mark 9:37 ESV] [Mark 10:14-15 ESV]

Children will not be in heaven because they are innocent. Paul taught clearly that children are born under condemnation of Adam’s sin (Rom. 5:12) . . . . If children are saved (and I believe they shall be) it can only be because God credits their sin to Christ; and because they are too young to believe, the requirement of personal faith is waived. The clear teaching of the Bible is that the souls of those children who die before they reach the age of understanding and responsibility are taken to the New Jerusalem with Christ to live joyfully with Him until the day of resurrection when they shall receive their own immortal body fit for eternity. I believe the Bible shows us that children will be in heaven. —GRANT JEFFREY

Wiese, Bill. 23 Minutes In Hell: One Man’s Story About What He Saw, Heard, and Felt in That Place of Torment (p. 112). Charisma House. Kindle Edition.

The Box Top of Life

The box top is the Bible, the answers to those five questions are:

1. Origin: Where did we come from?—We are created beings, wonderfully made in the image and likeness of God (Gen. 1:27; Ps. 139:14).

2. Identity: Who are we?—Since we are made in the image and likeness of God, we are creatures of supreme worth. We are loved by God and endowed with certain God-given rights and responsibilities (John 3:16-18; 1:12; Gal. 4:5).

3. Meaning: Why are we here?—Adam and Eve were created in a state of innocence, but their choice to disobey condemned the human race to punishment in accordance with the infinite justice of God (Gen. 3:6-19). Since that time, each of us has confirmed the choice of Adam and Eve through our own disobedience (Rom. 3:10-12; 5:12). We remain in this fallen state so that we can make free choices that will have implications in eternity. This temporal life is the choosing ground for the 3. eternal one. Choices we can make that will bring glory to God (Isa. 43:7; John 15:8), and may bring us eternal rewards, include:

a. accepting the ransom Jesus paid in order to free us from eternal punishment and welcome us into his eternal presence (Mark 10:45; 1 Tim. 2:6; Heb. 9:15; Luke 16:9; John 14:2)

b. serving as ambassadors for Christ to help others make that same choice (2 Cor 5:17-21; Matt. 28:19); and

c. learning from our own sufferings to comfort others who suffer (2 Cor. 1:3-4), and realizing that our sufferings enhance our own capacity to enjoy eternity (2 Cor. 4:15–5:1; 2 Pet. 1:5-11)

4. Morality: How should we live?—Since God first loved us, we should love him and others (Rom 5:8; 1 John 4:19-21). In fact, the “whole duty of man” is to “fear God and keep his commandments” (Eccles. 12:13-14). This includes making disciples of all nations (Matt. 28:19) and enjoying the good things God gives us (1 Tim. 6:17).

5. Destiny: Where are we going?—God’s infinite justice demands that he punish our sins, but because of his infinite love he has taken the punishment on himself (Isa. 53:4, 10, 12; Rom. 3:26; 2 Cor. 5:21; 1 Pet. 2:24). This is the only way he could remain just and still justify sinners (John 14:6; Rom. 3:26). His gift of salvation from eternal punishment is free to all the world (John 3:16; Eph. 2:8-9; Rev. 22:17). It cannot be earned through good works or any kind of merit. And God wants everyone to be saved from the eternal punishment we all deserve (1 Tim. 2:4; 2 Pet. 3:9). But since he cannot force us to love him (forced love is a contradiction), each one of us must choose for ourselves whom we will serve (Josh. 24:15; John 3:18).

Geisler, Norman L.. I Don’t Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist (Foreword by David Limbaugh) (p. 383). Crossway. Kindle Edition.

Building materials for heaven

The angels replied, “There are seven things one must do to build up their materials to build their home.
The first is their accumulation of worship and praise to God.
The second is their time spent reading the bible.
Third, their time spent praying.
Fourth, their time spent evangelizing to people.
Fifth, one’s offering to the Lord.
Sixth, their obedient tithes to God.
Lastly, their time spent serving the church in any way.

http://www.divinerevelations.info/documents/pastor_park/