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Featured Paul did not teach Belief Alone-ism for salvation.

Discussion in 'Controversial Christian Theology' started by Bible Highlighter, Feb 19, 2021.

  1. Bible Highlighter

    Bible Highlighter Law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul. Supporter

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    Paul did not teach Belief Alone-ism for salvation:

    Many believe that Paul taught to believe in Jesus alone to be saved;
    But this is not true. For Paul also says...

    1. "If any man teach otherwise, and consent not to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness; He is proud, knowing nothing," (1 Timothy 6:3-4). (Note: James 4:6 says God resists the proud and gives grace to the humble).
    2. “...God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth: Whereunto he called you by our gospel,...” (2 Thessalonians 2:13-14).
    3. “For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.” (Romans 8:13).
    4. “There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.” (Romans 8:1).
    5. "If any man love not the Lord Jesus Christ, let him be Anathema [accursed] Maranatha." (1 Corinthians 16:22).
    6. “But unto them that are contentious, and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, indignation and wrath, Tribulation and anguish, upon every soul of man that doeth evil, of the Jew first, and also of the Gentile; But glory, honour, and peace, to every man that worketh good, to the Jew first, and also to the Gentile: For there is no respect of persons with God." (Romans 2:8-11).
    7. “They profess that they know God; but in works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate." (Titus 1:16). (Note: To know God is a part of salvation (See: John 17:3, and 1 John 2:3-4, 1 John 5:12).
    8. “For if God spared not the natural branches, take heed lest he also spare not thee. Behold therefore the goodness and severity of God: on them which fell, severity; but toward thee, goodness, if thou continue in his goodness: otherwise thou also shalt be cut off.” (Romans 11:21-22).
    9. “Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.” (Philippians 2:12-13).
    10. “For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting. And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.” (Galatians 6:8-9).
    11. “...And having become servants of God, ye have your fruit unto holiness and the end, everlasting life.” (Romans 6:22).
    12. “Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.” (Galatians 5:19-21).
    13. “That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.” (2 Thessalonians 2:12).
    14. “Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace.” (Galatians 5:4).
    15. “But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints; Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks. For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience. Be not ye therefore partakers with them.” (Ephesians 5:3-7).
    16. “Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.” (1 Corinthians 6:9-10). This plays in nicely with this verse: And, Let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity.” (2 Timothy 2:19).
    17. “Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.” (Titus 2:14).
    18. “For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; (Titus 2:11-12).

    Side Note:

    Yes, Paul taught that we must believe in Jesus and His grace, and in the gospel in 1 Corinthians 15:1-4, but this was not Belief Alone-ism with the exclusion of living holy afterwards.
     
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2021
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  2. Dave G.

    Dave G. Well-Known Member

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    Living the holy life is part of the sanctification process ongoing in the believers heart. No one can make themselves live holy, only agree to. As we are are sanctified the evidence of the fruit of the Spirit shows more and more. The Spirit in us changes our hearts. One day we actually find ourselves loving our neighbor as is the second of Jesus' command, the first being loving God. In these two is the sum of all the law. Not according to me or Paul but Jesus Christ.

    The day we accepted Jesus from the heart level ( not just head knowledge as even the Satan believes from the head) as Lord we are justified. We receive the Spirit and are sealed, sanctification begins. That's assurance. We will never be glorified in these bodies as we are appointed to die once, glorification comes with the new body. This whole process produces a change in us, we are not that old Adam man any longer but joint heirs with Jesus Christ. We do live in the spirit but we aren't perfect, Christ is, He is our perfection. If we were never changed then you were never His, it was a false conversion you will end up falling away or giving a true ( honest) profession of faith later on....

    Has this happened to you ( whoever is reading) ? It has me. When I came to Jesus in 1979 my life immediately began changing, interests changed, my heart for fellow man slowly began to change. I spouted Jesus Christ to anyone because I knew the reality of Him and wanted everyone else to know. Today I walk through a grocery store feeling love go out from inside me to some of the fellow shoppers I don't even know. And I love God which is doing the best I can in this lousy flesh unglorified yet, to follow His commands. If you think you are holy because you try then you are deceived, Jesus Christ is literally our righteousness.
    The days of looking to go sin are over though, but we do slip. All through scripture people slip. Then we get up confess it and move on. Turning from the sin is repentance.
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2021
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  3. MMXX

    MMXX Brian

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    Belief alone has only one level.

    Holiness has many levels. So, how holy do we have to be to stay saved? Can anything less than 100% keep us saved?

    How do we gauge our level of holiness in relation to the holiness of God?

    Do we examine our heart to know?

    “The heart is deceitful above all things, And desperately wicked; Who can know it?" Jeremiah 17:9
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2021
  4. Albion

    Albion Facilitator

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    Who professes "Belief Alone" or Belief-Alone-ism?" I am familiar with salvation by Faith Alone and Sola Scriptura--plus the alternatives to them--but not "Belief Alone."

    :scratch:
     
  5. MMXX

    MMXX Brian

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    John 3:16
    I suppose. I didn't come up with it.
     
  6. Albion

    Albion Facilitator

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    Sorry, but the use of the word belief (or believe) isn't the same as claiming that there is an attitude about the nature of salvation, etc. which can be termed "Belief Alone-ism."

    Or that it implies "with the exclusion of holy living afterwards." That was also included in my reply.
     
  7. dqhall

    dqhall Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Jesus said he is the way, the truth and the life. If you believe the truth, you will not speak falsely. This is difficult as human memory is limited. There is a commandment, “You shall not bear false witness.” Some lawyers knew you may not testify falsely while under oath in a court of law, but they went on to make false statements while not under oath. A believer will be honest; one whose word is reliable.
     
  8. Bible Highlighter

    Bible Highlighter Law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul. Supporter

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    Well, I also was changed back in 1992 when I accepted Jesus Christ as my personal Lord and Savior. I used to be an atheist, and God changed my heart and He gave me a peace and a love that I had never known before. But just because our heart has been changed by God does not mean we are forced against our will to remain in God and His holy and good ways. For if such was not the case, then no believer would ever sin. In addition, ...

    We are told:

    “...We are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence stedfast unto the end.” (Hebrews 3:13-14).

    "Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life." (Jude 1:21).

    "...be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life." (Revelation 2:10).​


    We are told to:

    1. Continue in the grace of God (Acts of the Apostles 13:43).

    2. Continue in the faith (Acts of the Apostles 14:22) (Colossians 1:23).

    3. Continue in his goodness, otherwise we can be cut off (just like the Jews were cut off) (Romans 11:21-22).

    So things are not as you say. We still have free will in deciding to abide in the Lord or not.
     
  9. Clare73

    Clare73 Blood-bought

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    For Paul, there are only two considerations:

    1) faith + works, and
    2) faith apart (Gr. choris) from works (Ro 4:6), which is "faith alone."

    Ac 13:38 (Paul) - Through him everyone who believes is justified from everything you could not be justified from by the law of Moses.

    Ro 1:17 - For in the gospel a righteousness from God is revealed, a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: 'The righteous will live by faith' " (Hab 2:4)

    Ro 3:21-22 - But now a righteousness from God, apart from law, has been made known. . .This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ.

    Ro 3:28 - We maintain that a man is justified (declared righteous) by faith apart from observing the law.

    Ro 4:5 - However, to the man who does not work, but trusts God who justifies the wicked, his faith is credited as righteousness.

    Ro 6:14
    - you are not under law, but under grace.

    Gal 2:16 - know that a man is not justified by observing the law, but by faith in Jesus Christ.

    Gal 3:10
    - All you rely on observing the law are under a curse.

    Gal 3:11-12 - Clearly no one is justified before God by the law, because 'The righteous will live by faith,' and the law is not based on faith. On the contrary, the man who does these things will live by them." (Lev 18:5)

    Eph 2:9 - you have been saved, through faith. . .not by works, so that no one can boast.
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2021
  10. Bible Highlighter

    Bible Highlighter Law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul. Supporter

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    How many times do you think a believer can have lustful thoughts, or hate others, or use extremely filthy swear words a week and still be okay with God? Granted, I know that believers can sin on occasion, and there is God's grace if we confess our sins, but if a believer is living in sin day in and day out, are they truly in God's Sanctification Process? Are they really putting away sin out of their life? I believe a person can change to a degree on certain things, but if they are not changed completely whereby God helps them to walk uprightly in regards to basic morality, then they need to check to see if Christ is truly living in them or not (See: 2 Corinthians 13:5). For Paul commands of us something that most Christians today do not accept (See: 2 Corinthians 7:1).

    Also, if a believer were to generally live a holy life, but then they looked at a woman in lust, and then they got hit by a bus and died before they confessed of their sin, would they be saved? Yes, or no?
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2021
  11. Albion

    Albion Facilitator

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    No. The principle called "Faith Alone" holds that it is only Faith, not works, that enables us to be saved.

    It does NOT mean "faith apart from works."

    Faith necessarily will produce works, but our salvation is not based upon any merits supposedly accumulated through the performance of works. So when it comes to justification, it's Faith alone which accomplishes this, but genuine Faith is never without accompanying works.
     
  12. Bible Highlighter

    Bible Highlighter Law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul. Supporter

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    First, when Paul uses the word “works” or “law” generically, he is referring to the 613 Laws of Moses as a whole. Second, Paul many times referred to the 1st aspect of salvation in being saved by God's grace through faith in Jesus Christ without the deeds of the Law, and he is not referring to the 2nd aspect of salvation (Sanctification, i.e. living holy by God's power after one is saved by God's grace). Third, Paul fought against what I would call: “Circumcision Salvationism” (See: Galatians 5:2, Galatians 2:3, Romans 3:1). This is the belief that says that a person first needs to be circumcised in order to be saved. So if a person thought they had to be circumcised to be initially saved, they would be making the Law or works the basis of their salvation and not Jesus Christ and His grace. This would be “Works Alone Salvationism” (without God's grace) if one believed this way. In fact, this heresy was addressed at the Jerusalem council in more detail (Please carefully read: Acts of the Apostles 15:1, Acts of the Apostles 15:5, and Acts of the Apostles 15:24). For circumcision was a part of the OT Law given to Abraham and then later repeated in the Law of Moses. Circumcision is not a command given to us by Jesus Christ and his followers.
     
  13. Bible Highlighter

    Bible Highlighter Law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul. Supporter

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    We need to at least be faithful over a few things. How so?
    Well, Jesus said that the servant who was faithful over a few things was told to enter into the joy of His Lord.

    “His lord said unto him, Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.” (Matthew 25:21).​

    However, the unprofitable servant was cast into outer darkness.

    “And cast ye the unprofitable servant into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” (Matthew 5:30).​

    You are taking Jeremiah 17:9 out of context.

    5 “Thus saith the LORD; Cursed be the man that trusteth in man, and maketh flesh his arm, and whose heart departeth from the LORD.
    6 For he shall be like the heath in the desert, and shall not see when good cometh; but shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness, in a salt land and not inhabited.
    7 Blessed is the man that trusteth in the LORD, and whose hope the LORD is.
    8 For he shall be as a tree planted by the waters, and that spreadeth out her roots by the river, and shall not see when heat cometh, but her leaf shall be green; and shall not be careful in the year of drought, neither shall cease from yielding fruit.
    9 The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?
    10 I the LORD search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings.” (Jeremiah 17:9).

    Also, Ezekiel 36:26-27 says, “A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh. And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them.”

    Note: While this promise is given to Israel (see: verse 28), this portion of the text (verses 26-27) of this promise would also be given to Gentile believers in Christ, as well. This is why Jesus said we must be born again. This is why we are given the Holy Spirit after accepting Jesus as our Savior. We are to be a new creation in Christ and not the old man.
     
  14. Bible Highlighter

    Bible Highlighter Law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul. Supporter

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    Can a Christian abide in unconfessed sin of lusting after a woman and still be saved by faith alone?
    Was king David saved WHILE he committed his sins of adultery and murder?
    How do you define holy living after one is saved by a Belief (faith) in Jesus?
    What does that look like? Can a believer go prodigal for a time and still be saved while they are prodigal? What if a believer who accepted Jesus and is changed and lives for the Lord for a time ends up backsliding into a life of sin? Should they question that their coming to the Lord was genuine? Did they not pray hard enough to Jesus? Did they not trust in His sacrifice the right way?

    Also, if holy living and or good works always follows a true faith automatically, then why are we told the following things in Scripture?

    We are told:

    "Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life." (Jude 1:21).

    "...be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life." (Revelation 2:10).​


    We are told to:

    1. Continue in his goodness, otherwise we can be cut off (just like the Jews were cut off) (Romans 11:21-22).

    This suggest that we have our part to do besides just believing. God is not going to force us to be good or to do good works or to live holy against our free will. So it requires more than just a belief or faith as a part of salvation. For we must work out our salvation with fear and trembling (Philippians 2:12). So it's not a walk in the park.
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2021
  15. Albion

    Albion Facilitator

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    We really cannot judge the sins of everyone we come into contact with, but it takes a real faith to justify.

    If a person such as you are describing were to go his merry way, indulging in forbitten behavior, while claiming to have faith, we would think he was only deceiving himself. That certainly wouldn't disprove Sola Fide.

    But suppose he did have faith but still succumbed to temptation. He could repent and amend his life, and that would not be contrary to the concept of faith alone (or, for that matter, to the concept of the Catholic churches that it takes faith and also works).

    Obviously, I would say, we are instructed in HOW we are to live and what we must avoid. We are presented with examples of righteous living that we should, as believers, emulate. It's guidance.
     
  16. Bible Highlighter

    Bible Highlighter Law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul. Supporter

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    If faith always produces works then one needs to have works as a part of salvation to show their faith is true. Even you did not want to works to merit salvation they do because no faith (that lives itself out) can exist without works following it. So works is a necessary part of the salvation equation. So it's not faith alone (belief alone) that saves. For it always must include works. Whether these works are forced upon us by God or not does not change anything. Works would still be the necessary ingredient needed to show a true faith and thus they are need to show a true faith and thus true salvation.
     
  17. Bible Highlighter

    Bible Highlighter Law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul. Supporter

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    Do you believe future sins are forgiven for a believer?
     
  18. Bible Highlighter

    Bible Highlighter Law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul. Supporter

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    But why is this the case if it is all GOD doing the good works and to help us to live holy? For if doing good works and living holy is inevitable as a part of having faith alone, then we would not need to have any instruction telling us to stay faithful, and to continue in His goodness. We would just automatically do that as a part of faith alone. But seeing we are told to keep ourselves in the love of God, it is not an automatic thing as a result of faith alone. We have to work out our salvation with fear and trembling (Philippians 2:12).
     
  19. Albion

    Albion Facilitator

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    The mistake there is in thinking that to show something is the equivalent of what it is. In this case, what it is that saves.

    Yes, good works do testify to a lively faith, but that demonstration doesn't make these works be what it is that actually qualifies anyone for salvation.
     
  20. Albion

    Albion Facilitator

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    "It" isn't all God doing good works. We are instructed, as disciples of Christ, to do good ourselves. But that isn't the issue here. The issue concerned what, on our part, qualifies us for salvation.

    I don't see any reason to reach that conclusion. Christ preached the Sermon on the Mount, specifying particular acts that his listeners should engage in. Would they have done them on their own? I doubt it. Would WE know exactly what acts are God-pleasing...in the absence of any guidance? I don't think so. The reason we, as Christians, know to take care of the poor, to be humble, to tell the truth, and so on, is because we are following the guidance we've been given.
     
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