[We are] not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek. (Romans 1:16)

Friday, May 23, 2008

Do You Agree With This Quotation XXIII

by Antonio da Rosa

It has been a while since I have put up for discussion a quote from a famous (or infamous) person. As of late we again have been discussing saving faith, for this is on the frontline in the battle for the gospel. If you all haven't noticed, I am an advocate for a clear and biblical invitation when engaging in evangelism. This is the crux of the matter! I want to be as faithful to the Scriptures as I can. What I love about the saving message that our Lord Jesus Christ proclaimed is its utter simplicity: "whosoever believes in Me has everlasting life"!!!

Can Jesus be telling the truth? Is it as simple as that? Well I sure hope so. Why? For one day I will stand before the judgment seat of Christ and give an account for what I have done. I take the gospel of Christ very seriously. I would wager my eternal destiny upon the simplicity of Christ's message: "whosoever believes in Me has everlasting life". In a sense I have. And till the day I die I will evangelize others and teach others this very truth: All who believe in Jesus have eternal life.

But now I digress. On to the topic of this post. I do not wish to divulge, yet the author of this quote. But here is some context so that you may appropriately give your nod or dissent.

The author of this quote is a dispensationalist and is opposed to Lordship Salvation. The context of the quote is as follows. He is discussing that there needs to be some facts involved in saving faith or else faith is "empty". But he continues his treatise to state that the belief in facts about someone doesn't save. One must rely or commit oneself to Christ, having confidence in Him alone which is more than merely believing some historical facts. It is in this context he states this:

Trust, however, implies reliance, commitment, and confidence in the objects... that one is trusting. An element of commitment must be present in trusting Christ for salvation, but it is a commitment to Him, His promise, and His ability to give eternal life to those who believe. The object of faith or trust is the Lord Jesus Christ, however little or much one may know about Him. The issue about which we trust Him is His ability to forgive our sins and take us to heaven.


I will be the first to answer: there are some ways that I would state some things differently, but I wholeheartedly agree with this quotation and furthermore especially agree with the bolded part.

What say you? Do you agree with this quotation?

9 Comments:

  • Antonio:

    This is a quote from Charlies Ryrie, from his book So Great Salvation (page 111 in the 1997 edition).

    Ryrie's statements here are unclear and confusing. Below are a few definitions of the term "believe" (pisteuo) that are much clearer.

    In his lexicon Bauer writes:

    "believe (in), trust of relig. belief in a special sense, as faith in the Divinity that lays special emphasis on
    trust in his power and his nearness to help, in addition to being convinced that he exists and that his
    revelations or disclosures are true."

    In the New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology, Colin Brown gives this
    understanding of “believe” (pisteuō):

    "The trusting acceptance and recognition of what God has done and promised in [Christ]."

    Likewise, Vine writes:

    "pisteuō . . . 'to believe,' also 'to be persuaded of,' and hence, 'to place confidence in, to trust,' signifies,
    in this sense of the word, reliance upon, not mere credence."

    Lewis Sperry Chafer, quoting the International Standard Bible Encyclopedia affirms the
    following concerning faith:

    "In conclusion, without trespassing on the ground of other articles, we call the reader's attention, for his Scriptural studies, to the central place of faith in Christianity, and its significance. As being, in its true idea, a reliance as simple as possible upon the word, power, love, of Another . . . In its nature, not by any
    mere arbitrary arrangement, it is his one possible receptive attitude, that in which he brings nothing,
    so that he may receive all."

    Contrary to Jeremy Myers (The Gospel Is More Than "Faith Alone In Christ Alone"), by definition belief is consistent with “grace” (1 Cor. 15:10-11), it relies upon another, it
    trusts something as true, it eliminates obedience, it excludes good works, it narrows the door.

    JP

    By Blogger Jonathan Perreault, at Friday, May 23, 2008 8:29:00 PM  

  • "whosoever believes in Me has everlasting life"!!!

    "Can Jesus be telling the truth? Is it as simple as that?"

    My Bible says,

    "What good is it, my brothers, if a man claims to have faith but has no good works? Can such faith save him? …faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by works, is dead… I will show you my faith by what I do. You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that - and shudder. You foolish man, do you want evidence that faith without works is dead? …You see that a person is justified by what he does and not by faith alone." James 2:14-24

    Given this verse, there must be an explanation for the apparent contradiction. I submit that we must test our questions with the whole counsel of Scripture.

    "1 John 2:3-5: We know that we have come to know him if we obey his commands. The man who says, "I know him," but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But if anyone obeys his word, God's love is truly made complete in him."

    By Blogger Word Warrior, at Friday, May 23, 2008 10:16:00 PM  

  • Antonio,

    Interesting question. Unfortunately, for most of my life the meaning of 'trust' in Christ was to hope that He would save me. I was born again when the Holy Spirit revealed to me that Christ HAS saved me and I simply believed it.

    So for me, words like committment, trust--even faith--carry some baggage. Biblical belief is simply taking God at His word (like Abraham did). Jesus instructed us to have childlike faith. My 4 year-old believes as a fact that I will play with him after dinner if I say so. Eventually he will discover that I will fail him, I hope to teach him that God never will.

    One more thought: I recently had an email discussion with a professor from Providence Theological Seminary who had this to say about faith in Christ: "[...] faith is the mode in which one receives Christ's justifying and sanctifying work as work done for oneself and the world, too."

    Well stated indeed.

    Darryl

    By Blogger Darryl V., at Saturday, May 24, 2008 2:37:00 AM  

  • Word Warrior, rather than simply quoting those verses, can I suggest that you explain what you believe they mean and why you think this contradicts Antonio's position?

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at Saturday, May 24, 2008 2:48:00 AM  

  • Word Warrior,

    unfortunately with such an understanding of your verse from 1 John 2:3-5: We know that we have come to know him if we obey his commands. The man who says, "I know him," but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But if anyone obeys his word, God's love is truly made complete in him.

    None of us know Him in a saving way. I fail to obey his commnands all the time. Furthermore, there are people who do not believe in Jesus yet obey Christ's commands. Does this too prove they are saved?

    I appreciate your visit here and would love to see you get more involved with the conversations.

    warmly,

    Antonio da Rosa

    By Blogger Antonio, at Sunday, May 25, 2008 6:50:00 PM  

  • Hey Darryl,

    Do I know you from the GES chat? Where do I know you from?

    I appreciated your statements and without a whole lot of thought, agree with them. Thanks for your input.

    But I do not understand the Professor's statement. And if I do, I don't know I fully agree with it.

    Anyway, I appreciate your visit. Please keep coming back.

    Your FG host,

    Antonio

    By Blogger Antonio, at Sunday, May 25, 2008 6:53:00 PM  

  • What's up Darryl! Hey Antonio, yes, you know Darryl from the GES Chat. Darryl, I loved your comment. If you're reading this, I fondly remember your statement and our agreement at the GES chat that one is saved only when they realize it's already done for us. Yep, biblical belief is taking God at his word. I love the way Zane puts it - belief is the inward conviction that what God says to us in the Gospel is true - and what does He say? That we have eternal life through His Son.

    By Blogger Danny, at Sunday, May 25, 2008 7:06:00 PM  

  • Antonio:

    Here is the full quote from Ryrie that you have edited in your vain attempt to remove the finished work and full deity of Christ from the content of faith:

    "Trust, however, implies reliance, commitment, and confidence in the objects or truths that one is trusting. An element of commitment must be present in trusting Christ for salvation, but it is commitment to Him, His promise, and His ability to give eternal life to those who believe.

    The object of faith or trust is the Lord Jesus Christ, however little or much one may know about Him. The issue about which we trust Him is His ability to forgive our sins and take us to heaven. And because He is the Lord God, there is an element in bowing before Him and acknowledgeing Him as a most superior person when one trusts Him for salvation."

    JP

    By Blogger Jonathan Perreault, at Sunday, May 25, 2008 7:19:00 PM  

  • Hi Antonio & Danny!

    Yes, I miss the GES chat...it got moved (a couple times I think) & doesn't seem to get a lot of activity from what I can tell.

    Danny,
    I remember very well that chat you and I had! It was a relief to find that GES and I were on the same page regarding the Gospel.

    Antonio,
    Thanks for your kind comments. I included the full quote from the professor below, perhaps it will be more clear in the full context. I'd like to hear your thoughts if you don't agree with him.

    "Justification and its fruit, regeneration, is a gift of God.
    Accordingly, faith does not justify. Rather, faith is the mode in which one receives Christ's justifying and sanctifying work as work done for oneself and the world, too."

    Best,
    Darryl

    By Blogger Darryl V., at Sunday, May 25, 2008 11:35:00 PM  

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