A small group of believers I know here in Blogland engage in discussion about certain portions of scripture and are currently blogging through Paul’s letter to the Galatians, with it’s central theme of Justification by Faith. One of the two Monday contributors made a couple of comments that simply beg for thoughtful consideration. Thanks Dale! I encourage you to read Dale’s blog post.
The thought provoking comments that invite serious thought and discussion are these:
“I am not saved because I accepted Jesus. I am saved because Jesus died for my sins!!! I was saved 2000 years ago!”
We are not saved because we made a decision to accept Jesus. We are saved because Christ died for our sins. The death and resurrection of Christ is the core of the gospel message (1 Cor 15:1-4), and it was Christ’s death 2000 years ago, in our place, that secured the salvation all those would believe in Christ and become the true children of God spoken of in John 1:12-23.
“But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.” – Jesus
So we have the fact that 2,000 years ago Jesus paid the price for our sin, as well as a point in time when a person comes to faith in Christ and is “born of God”. We also have John 3:16 that tells us that those who believe will inherit eternal life.
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” – Jesus
Here we have a picture of both the sovereignty of God in salvation and our responsibility to believe and make a decision out of our human will. We are not “born again” because of our decision, but it is only from the moment one believes (requiring an operation of human will), that we are truly a child of God.
How is it that we are not saved because we accepted Christ by an act of human decision/will, yet we must believe, (a real decision is involved) in order to be born of the Spirit of God and become His children? Assume both halves of the question to be true.
This is an open discussion. If you read this and have a question, even if it’s “What does it matter, as long as we are saved?”