Q153 : The Content of Saving Faith

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Q153 : The Content of Saving Faith

This morning I was distraught following yet another attempt to witness to my mother who was raised in the Unity cult where they believe there is no Satan, no hell, God is only love, etc. She doesn't believe people are sinners, thinks homosexuals are born that way and can't understand how God could let His own Son die on the cross if He loved Him and can't stand the thought of blood. She particularly doesn't believe she's a sinner, but she prays to God.

But then I read Mr. Woods' articlea. Mom does believe in Jesus. I imagine "believe" is the operative word? As in believes He died to take her sins away? Or just believes He exists and loves her? "Except a man be born again he cannot see the kingdom of God" - can you be born again by just believing?

I attend a fundamentalist Baptist church. When we witness to people, we generally use Scripture that refers to the fact we're all sinners, the wages of sin is death but the free gift of eternal life is through Jesus, repentance, believing Jesus died, was buried and rose from the dead after 3 days. Are those points all unnecessary? I got saved via the Roman Road. Are you saying that's works?

If you can clarify "believe" for me, I'd sure appreciate it. Thank you.

A153 : by Andy Woods

In order to answer your question let me take you to the purpose statement of John's Gospel found in John 20:30-31. There, you will notice both a Christological and Soteriological purpose. The Christological purpose is the demonstration that Jesus is the Son of God based upon the presentation of His many signs throughout the book. The soteriological purpose is to invoke faith in Him for salvation. While faith alone saves, one must believe on the right Christ.

The way you describe your mom's beliefs, I fear she is not believing in the biblical Jesus. Faith is only as good as the object it is placed in.

Regarding the presentation of the gospel at your church, without wanting to paint with too broad a brush, my experience with most fundamental baptists is that the preach an overly complicated gospel. I have no problem preaching a biblically based Jesus so that the sinner understands exactly who they are believing on. However, the word "repent" needs greater clarification. If this word is used to mean simply a change of mind, then I have no problem with the use of this word in the gospel presentation. However, if this word means some kind of moral reformation on the part of the unbeliever before or simultaneous with trusting in Christ, I think that that is a false gospel. The bottom line based upon John's purpose statement is the correct Jesus must be understood. However, belief or trust in this God-ordained provision is all that God will accept in order for someone to be justified before a holy God.

I hope this helps.

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