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there are milions of christians who think they are saved but actually their names are not in the book of life!!!!!!!!

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Try Ephesians 1:13 (KJV)
13  In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,

JB

Yes, that is a good verse. Shall we take it on its own? We trust Him after we believe. This is where it's often said that one must most certainly have a living and active faith as is described in James 2:21-23 or God would never impart new birth. There is much confusion for many people in these things concerning new birth, such as in what way obedience accompanies faith, how is the condition of faith (belief) met, etc...

Yes, I could take it on it's own.

Faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the Word of God. Ro.10:17

By hearing the Word of God, it would take faith to believe it. Wouldn’t it?

I look at this kind of faith as a form of “metamorphous” you stay in the Word, and hearing and believing it.Faith will eventually come to life. God is giving it to you, but it is through His Word. And it will be according to how much you are hearing. Two kinds of hearing,  

Mark 4:12 (KJV)
 That seeing they may see, and not perceive; and hearing they may hear, and not understand …”akouo”

Romans 10:17 (KJV)
  So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. “akoē

This is hearing the message, and understanding it, thereby faith comes.

JB

Christ saves through faith. To be saved one must believe but faith isn't the basis of salvation. It's the channel. We are saved by grace through faith. What of repentance? True saving faith must consist of repentance. I think no one really argues that faith and repentance both are part of being born again. The faith through which we are saved is a gift. Often, it's pointed out that repentance must be involved or otherwise belief is just a mental assent. I agree that it is very important to keep preaching the gospel and for people to hear it as much as possible.

New American Standard Bible (NASB)

17 So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word [a]of Christ.

Footnotes:

a. Romans 10:17 Or concerning Christ

When people are asked what the gospel of Christ is, some don't really know.

It's the good news. But some who even profess to be saved don't know what the news is. If asked how they got saved, some will tell you what they did: e.g., knelt at an altar; prayed through; went forward, etc.

I will also add that Jesus Himself preached repentance.

Matthew 4New American Standard Bible (NASB)

12 Now when Jesus heard that John had been taken into custody, He withdrew into Galilee;

13 and leaving Nazareth, He came and settled in Capernaum, which is by the sea, in the region of Zebulun and Naphtali.

14 This was to fulfill what was spoken through Isaiah the prophet:

15 “The land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali,
[e]By the way of the sea, beyond the Jordan, Galilee of the [f]Gentiles—
16 “The people who were sitting in darkness saw a great Light,
And those who were sitting in the land and shadow of death,
Upon them a Light dawned.”

17 From that time Jesus began to [g]preach and say, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”

I’m sorry Amanda, I love you and pray for you, especially Eph.1:17-23. Please read, and take it as my prayer for you.

 But I can see now that I can’t compete with your intellect, nor your philosophy. I’m telling you what the Word of God says, but you want to get into details, intellectually comprehend the Word of God, and the bible plainly states that, 1Cor.2, that the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God, For they are foolishness unto him, neither can he understand them, for they are spiritually discerned.

The sub heading of this portion of scripture reads,

“Only to those of mature faith can He impart Gods Wisdom”

1 Corinthians 2:6-16 (KJV)
6. Howbeit we speak wisdom among them that are perfect: yet not the wisdom of this world, nor of the princes of this world, that come to nought:
7. But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory:
8. Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.
9. But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.
***10. But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.
11. For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God.
12. Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God.
13. Which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.
14. But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
15. But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man.
16. For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.

 

*** Notice! Not by your mental capacity to understand!!

JB

 

You have misunderstood me. I'm saying that a mere belief of the facts of the gospel is a mental assent. Even devils believe and tremble. I'm saying, too, that it matters what is believed, but just knowing the facts and performing "steps" doesn't mean new birth has occurred within a person. Nevertheless, it matters what is believed about the person of Christ and it matters what is believed to be the gospel of Christ.

Be certain, it doesn't matter to me how much I'm accused of using my intellect because everyone who has any kind of knowledge is using his or her intellect, since knowledge is stored in the intellect. The intellect has a biblical term. Those who have been given a new heart store Christ's words in their hearts. I agree that it must go beyond one's intellect or otherwise would be just a mental assent. This is getting old to me, JB. I'd rather you not personally accuse me of using my intellect as if by doing so I'm doing something wrong. It's alright to say that some do or many do have just a mental assent, etc, but there's no need to make it personal.

God must open eyes, ears, and hearts to receive the gospel message. Thus, preach the gospel, always! To do so, one must know what the gospel message is!
Someone brought something up to me recently that I thought was pretty awesome, regarding the Ministry of Reconciliation and being an ambassador for Christ. 2 Cor 5:20 says, So we are Christ's ambassadors; God is making his appeal through us. We speak for Christ when we plead, "Come back to God!" 

It can be discouraging when we share the gospel with someone, especially for a long time, and that person's understanding still appears to be darkened. I like this song by Michael W. Smith, Open the Eyes of My Heart, Lord. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vnqb7Vn4AEE&feature=youtube_gdat...

Recently, I lost a loved one who just would not believe in Christ's deity. I prayed for her eyes, ears, and heart to open, but she didn't want to hear anything about the triune God. I grieve for the loss of her life but my grief for her is doubled now because even though she believed Jesus is a mighty one and died that she might have forgiveness and receive everlasting life, I constantly think about how God must have judged her when her spirit went to face her Creator and she didn't believe Jesus is the Almighty One.

At our physical birth, we're born into sin separated from God.

God didn't want it to be that way, so He sent His son to come to earth as a human being.  This is the way we know, believe and trust that HE understands all our trials, sin temptation (although Jesus never sinned), weaknesses, sickness, heartbreak ....etc.  Jesus understands everything we go through because HE also went through it.

So-- Jesus came to earth to suffer, die and resurrect from the dead. 

Hebrews chapter 9 says:

22"In fact, according to the law of Moses, nearly everything was purified with blood. For without the shedding of blood, there is no forgiveness.

23That is why the Tabernacle and everything in it, which were copies of things in heaven, had to be purified by the blood of animals. But the real things in heaven had to be purified with far better sacrifices than the blood of animals.  24For Christ did not enter into a holy place made with human hands, which was only a copy of the true one in heaven. He entered into heaven itself to appear now before God on our behalf. 25And he did not enter heaven to offer himself again and again, like the high priest here on earth who enters the Most Holy Place year after year with the blood of an animal. 26If that had been necessary, Christ would have had to die again and again, ever since the world began. But now, once for all time, he has appeared at the end of the age to remove sin by his own death as a sacrifice.  27And just as each person is destined to die once and after that comes judgment, 28so also Christ died once for all time as a sacrifice to take away the sins of many people. He will come again, not to deal with our sins, but to bring salvation to all who are eagerly waiting for him."

The resurrection of Christ shows that He overcame death, and when we accept His sacrifice we can overcome it too.  His suffering, death and resurrection reconciles us to the Father when we repent and believe the gospel.

 

Q:  How can we be truly saved?

A:   Repent and believe the gospel.

The "legal process" has already been done by Jesus..  outlined in Hebrews chapter 9:22  22"And according to the Law, one may almost say, all things are cleansed with blood, and without shedding of blood there is no forgiveness."

SO--  "according to the Law, without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness"  We see this also in the Old Testament.  Jesus satisfied and accomplished the thing that we could not accomplish.  That's the legal process.  In the Old Testament under the old covenant animal sacrifices would temporarily cover the sins of the people.  This was a legal process of animal sacrifices to provide a temporary covering of sins and to foreshadow the perfect and complete sacrifice of Jesus Christ.

 What do we have to do to be saved?

 

You must be born again.  Spiritually.  You are already physically alive.  But without Jesus you are spiritually dead. 

HOW?

 Acknowledge that you (we all are) are a sinner and separated from God.  This is not a personal insult.  It's a natural consequence of what happened in the garden when Eve ate the fruit from the tree and convinced Adam to eat it also.  When this happened they died spiritually, and the consequence of the action caused all humanity to be born spiritually dead....even though they (we) are physically alive, we are spiritually dead until we are reconciled with the Father thru Jesus.

 Because the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 6:23

The life of the flesh is in the blood (Lev 17:11)....  this is the legal part. (see Hebrews 9:22 again)

6 You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. 7Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. 8But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:6)

Acts 17:30 says "God commands men everywhere to repent..."  This means to agree with God and what He says about sin.  Admit to be poor in spirit (see Matthew 5:3 NASB)...  Admit, acknowledge and agree with God that you (WE) need a Saviour.  This is not personal weakness...  It's really just being real.  Look around you. 

You don’t have to look very far to see the evil that happens in the world.  This should serve as an eye opener that everything in the bible is true.  That’s why admitting we need a Saviour is not a personal weakness, because we can’t deny the evil in the world unless you want to completely detach yourself from the reality of the world around you.  It's a first step towards true humility.  We can't save ourselves.  Although our physical bodies walk, talk and eat, unless we are reconciled to God thru Jesus, we are dead.  We must be born again (spiritually speaking of course). 

Acts 16:30.31 is beautiful..  30He then brought them out and asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?”

31They replied, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved—you and your household.”

John 1:12 12 But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name, 13who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.

Romans 10

11For the Scripture says, “WHOEVER BELIEVES IN HIM WILL NOT BE DISAPPOINTED.” 12For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, abounding in riches for all who call on Him; 13for “WHOEVER WILL CALL ON THE NAME OF THE LORD WILL BE SAVED.”

Why is this so hard for some people to grasp?

"But a natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised."  1 Corinthians 2:14

The NLT says it in plain English language:

14"But people who aren’t spiritual can’t receive these truths from God’s Spirit. It all sounds foolish to them and they can’t understand it, for only those who are spiritual can understand what the Spirit means."

 

If you find that you are one of those people who cannot grasp this, I suggest that you begin in a place of humility.  Ask God to show you if it is true, and watch and be amazed as HE does.  It’s amazing how God reads the motivation of our hearts, and shows us what we genuinely want to know. 

Important

"At our Spiritual rebirth we become NEW CREATIONS.  16Therefore from now on we recognize no one according to the flesh; even though we have known Christ according to the flesh, yet now we know Him in this way no longer. 17Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come. 18Now all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation,…"

This means we are no longer separated from God.  We are no longer sinners.  Even though we may sin, we are not sinners.  Because of the shedding of the blood of Christ, When God looks at us He sees the perfection of Christ.  God's Love is amazing and merciful.  Who has words to describe it?

I like what you've written.

Yes, when someone is born again, it happens only when he or she is enlightened and guided by the Spirit of God. No one is saved just by knowing the facts of the gospel message and performing an outline of "steps". The spirit of the person is involved, not just the person's mind. The spirit of the person becomes involved only through Holy Spirit. It takes both to become born again--hearing the Word about Christ and Holy Spirit.

New birth can only come to those who are being enlightened and whose spirits are being moved by Holy Spirit.

The gospel of Christ is found in 1 Cor. 15:3-4:

3 For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance[a]: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures (NIV).

As we look at those two verses we see:

First, Christ died. Who was he? It’s important what we believe about Jesus. He is truly God and truly man. The deity of Christ is clearly stated in the first verse of John 1:1. Jesus claimed His own deity when He said, “Before Abraham was, I am” (John 8:58). Jesus is also man. He was born of the virgin Mary. Philippians 2:5-8 puts it this way:
5 In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:
6 Who, being in very nature[a] God,
did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;
7 rather, he made himself nothing
by taking the very nature[b] of a servant,
being made in human likeness.
8 And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself
by becoming obedient to death—
even death on a cross!

Second, Christ died for our sins. People who are not saved are dead in their sins (see Ephesians 2:1). Romans 3:10 says, As it is written: “There is no one righteous, not even one” and Romans 3:23 says, “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”

To be saved one must see their own sin and not try to justify it but confess it. The word confess means “to agree with” and when we confess our sin to God we are saying, "God, you are right. I’m wrong. I have broken Your holy commandments. I have sinned. I am lost in my sins.”

Third, Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures. One must believe that the Scriptures are the inspired Word of God since Christ died according to the Scriptures. If we don’t believe the Bible is the inspired Word of God, inerrant and infallible, then how could it be possible to believe that Christ died according to the Scriptures -- if some of them are in error or are fallible?
2 Timothy 3:16-17 says, All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the servant of God[a] may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. (NIV)


Romans 5:8
New International Version (NIV)
8 But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

Fourth, He was buried. Jesus died on the cross to pay the full penalty for our sins. Because of what He did by dying in our place, salvation is offered to us as a gift and is received by faith. Baptism, living a good, moral life, working for charity, or anything else can do nothing to save us from our sins. Jesus did it. He was our substitute. He was sinless and was a perfect sacrifice. He was our substitute in life, living completely sinless and keeping the whole law without erring, which is something that no person can do, and He was our substitute in death, where He suffered the wrath of God and took our Hell on the cross and died for us in our place. The wages of sin is death (Romans 6:23) and Jesus paid those wages for all who receive Him as Lord and Savior by faith.
Romans 3:28
New International Version (NIV)
28 For we maintain that a person is justified by faith apart from the works of the law.
Ephesians 2:8-10
New International Version (NIV)
8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

Last, He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures. Once again, it is important to believe that the Bible is infallible and inerrant and is the Word of God. Without the resurrection all is vain.
Romans 6:23
New International Version (NIV)
23 For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in[a] Christ Jesus our Lord.
Eternal life is through Jesus Christ alone. And that is the Gospel. It is a gift.

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