by Antonio da RosaThe false "gospel" of "You can't be saved unless:"
You quit the nasty nine and the dirty dozen and the filthy five
You quit sleeping with your boyfriend
You repent of all your sin
You sell out for God
You faithfully obey and persevere
You die to self
You commit all to God
You visit orphans and the sick
You sell all that you have and give to the poor
You submit everything to God
----------(The Council at Jerusalem as it considers the issue of Lordship Salvation Acts 15:1-29 / By which it condemns it)
Acts 15:7,8, 10-11
Peter rose up and said to them... "...God... purif[ies] [our] hearts by faith. Now therefore, why do you test God by putting a yoke on the neck of the disciples which neither our fathers nor we were able to bear? But we believe that through the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ we shall be saved in the same manner as they."
I do not set aside the grace of God; for if righteousness comes through *law, then Christ died in vain.
[* Anarthrous construction: meaning no article (most translations provide "the"). Is not specific meaning law of Moses, but concerns the quality or characteristic of law period: rules, such as "you must do this and stop doing that or you can't be saved!.]
Christ sold out for us! Christ committed His all for us!
If any of the above list is necessary for our salvation, then Christ died in vain.
O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you that you should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed among you as crucified? This only I want to learn from you: Did you receive the Spirit by *works of *law, or by the hearing of faith?
[* Anarthrous: denoting characteristic and quality (not identity)]
Salvation coming from being convinced from "the hearing of faith"! (This expresses the passive nature of the act of faith that brings salvation.) The Spirit is not received by any quality or characteristic of work requirements --rules-- such as the list of things above, WHETHER THEY ARE LOOKED AT AS MERITORIOUS OR NOT!
(Calvinists, notice the ordu salutis here! The Holy Spirit's regeneration received by the "hearing of faith"!)
Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?"
Jesus is the Guarantor of eternal life to the mere believer in Him for it. His guarantee is explicit in His promise to the believer. There is no talk of Jesus giving the list of requirements that the Lordship Proponents do! Eternal life is dispensed through "the hearing of faith" in Jesus Christ alone. Faith alone in Christ alone! Is that not the reformation mantra? Yet it no longer describes the Puritanism of Reformed theology today.
"Most assuredly I say to you, he who believes in Me has everlasting life" (John 6:47)
How I wish it would return to this plain and exquisite simplicity!