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As strange as it seems, some who profess belief in Jesus Christ “argue” with Him by their doctrines. They do not consciously do so and will deny doing so, but they do so, nonetheless. Their doctrines also “argue” with the Lord’s apostles and other inspired men (which is equivalent to arguing with Jesus since He supplied their words).
Moreover, those who, by their doctrines, contradict Jesus and the inspired writers also cause the Lord and the inspired writers to argue with one another—and even with themselves. The Bible’s inspiration implies that its writers speak from One Source and that their words do not (yea, cannot) contradict one another. Thus any interpretation of Scripture that creates a contradiction with other passages cannot be correct. Correct interpretation and application always produce harmony—never conflict—between Biblical statements.
Let us now apply the foregoing principles. Vast numbers are convinced that they were saved (i.e., forgiven of their sins) at the moment they believed in Jesus as the Son of God. Varieties of this doctrine include those who claim they were saved when they prayed “the sinner’s prayer,” when they asked Jesus to “come into their heart,” or when they confessed their faith in Christ. Some relate a physical sensation or feeling they experienced, which they interpret as a confirmation of their salvation.
We do not question the sincerity of any who hold such convictions or who make such claims. Nevertheless, these concepts concerning salvation amount to arguing with the Lord and His inspired writers. Note the two following illustrations:
- “God, be thou merciful to me, a sinner” (Luke 18:13) was a noble prayer, but by a Jew living under the law of Moses. It has nothing to do with attaining forgiveness through the blood of Christ under the New Testament. Those who claim that it does “argue” with what Jesus said in Mark 16:16: “He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved.”
- Believeth in John 3:16 means more than mere profession of faith in Jesus as the Son of God and Savior unless He contradicted Himself. He also said, “Not everyone that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter the kingdom of Heaven, but he that doeth the will of my Father Who is in Heaven” (Mat. 7:21). Thus, belief in John 3:16 includes obedience.
The New Testament states several times that one is saved by faith, but never by faith alone. One must wonder if such folk will still be arguing with the Lord about this matter when they stand before Him at The Judgment (John 12:48).
[Note: I wrote this article for and it appeared in the Denton Record-Chronicle, Denton, TX, July 19, 2013]
Attribution: From thescripturecache.com; Dub McClish, owner and administrator.