Tuesday, October 09, 2012

BAPTISM: OBEDIENT FAITH IN GOD

It's interesting, ironic, and confusing that the Lutheran Church which considers itself the champion of "faith alone" doctrine - righting the errors of the Catholic Church - which says Jesus did it all on the cross and you have nothing to do for you salvation are also the church that teaches infant baptism FOR THE REMISSION OF SINS! If there was ever an example of "works salvation", that would be a classic example of it in a denomination. The child, first off, has no sin yet the Lutheran's, like Catholics and Baptist, say they do. And secondly, they suppose that this sinful child is lost and is saved in "baptism" - sprinkling, not the scriptural mode you understand - WITHOUT having an house of "faith" or "faith alone". If the works of the parents or priest can save a person who doesn't have faith, then that's trademark "works salvation". Is that not a very curious contradiction?

The church of Christ saves sinners, adults who actually have fallen from God's grace and can put their own faith in God's saving grace, Eph. 2:8,9. I can think of a few passages that show the necessity of obedience to the Gospel: 1] 1 Peter 4:17; 2] Romans 10:16 "heed the good news" is Greek of "obey the Gospel"; 3] 2 Thessalonians 1:8. Clearly, the Scriptures show that we must not only believe the Gospel, but we must OBEY it. And don't say "well isn't that putting some of the responsibility on the sinner and admitting that Christ's work on the cross is not sufficient?" First, God said we must obey the Gospel so if that conflicts with your understanding of Jesus' work on the cross, you need to go back and examine your beliefs. Second, no it doesn't diminish the work of Christ at all. But God is saying that "obedience to the Gospel" is HOW the sinner is to respond in faith. The "faith" we are saved by (Rom. 5:1; Eph. 2:8) is an obedient faith, just how Paul describes it in Romans 1:5 and 16:26! Our denominational friends who teach "faith only", as if Biblical faith excludes obedience, are teaching a twisted Gospel.

 When I work or obey in faith, I do these things because God said to and I revere Him. BUT my faith IS NOT IN THE WORK ITSELF, as if my work is sufficient to save me, rather my faith is IN GOD who saves. So we all should do everything which God commanded. But we also should put our faith in God who alone can save.

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