Is Believing in God Enough?
©2016 Stan Hallett
Orthodox Christianity says that all you need to do is believe in God to be saved. Many people believe that they are saved because they “accepted Jesus as their personal savior”, or they “accepted Jesus into their heart” or said a “sinner’s prayer”. This is Satan influenced, man-made philosophy. It is a lie, and a trick of Satan, and cannot be found in the Bible, anywhere.
Modern Orthodox (what is commonly accepted) Christianity says that; “you do not need to do anything in order to be saved”. They reason that Jesus paid the full price on the cross, and thus did all the work for us.
They use Bible verses such as Ephesians 1:8,9 which says; “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.”
We are indeed saved by the Grace of our Lord and Savior. Through faith in Him and His Word we are indeed saved. But, James 2:17 says that “Even so faith, if it have not works, is dead, being alone”.
True faith requires action. People say lots of things, but until they put some action behind it, you never know for sure. A person can say they love you, and that is nice to hear. But if they really love you, they will show it by their actions.
James 2:18-24 says; “Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works. 19 Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.”
James says that simply believing is not enough, for “the devils also believe, and tremble.” Not only that, but the book of James says that if you don’t back up your faith with action, that your faith is dead.
James 2:20-24 – “But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead? 21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar? 22 Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect? 23 And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God. 24 Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.”
So if we get a little deeper into the Word of God, we see besides having faith, that there are some things that we must do, and that we must obey to be saved. Call them works if you will, but never-the-less they are necessary.
Jesus said to Nicodemus in John 3:5; “…Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.” Already we see that it takes more than simply believing or accepting.
Then in 2 Thessalonians 1:7-9 we read; “And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, 8 In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: 9 Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power.”
The Gospel must be obeyed, whether you call it a work, or simple obedience. You see Jesus is Lord and Savior. People seem to like the savior part, but they don’t want anyone to be Lord over them. They are in essence saying; “Save me from the bad stuff, but don’t tell me that I have to do anything. I just want to continue to do as I please.” I dare say that many “christians” live their life just that way.
So how do we obey the Gospel? The Apostle Peter gave it on the day of Pentecost which was the beginning of the church in Acts 2:38,39; “…Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. 39 For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.”
Sounds like a work, doesn’t it? You see God requires that we repent of our ways and turn to His ways, It is a decision we must make, and do in our heart and mind, an about-face if you will.
Acts 3:19 – “Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord.”
Acts 17:30 – “And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent.”
Acts 26:20 – “But shewed first unto them of Damascus, and at Jerusalem, and throughout all the coasts of Judaea, and then to the Gentiles, that they should repent and turn to God, and do works meet for repentance.”
Then we must, as Jesus stated in John 3:5, be born of the water. That is to say that we must be baptized in His name, the name of Jesus, just as the Apostles preached and baptized.
Not by repeating Matthew 28:19, but by obeying it and being baptized in the NAME (singular) of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. That NAME is Jesus!
Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved (Acts 4:12).
The Bible says in Romans 6:4,5 – “Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. 5 For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection.”
This must be done in the name of Jesus just as the Apostles did in Acts 8:16, and Acts 10:48, and Acts 19:5. For Colossians 3:17 says; “…whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus…”.
We then have the promise that He will fill us with His Spirit just as they were filled on the Day of Pentecost at the beginning of the church, even so it is happening yet today in the last days of the church.
Acts 2:39 – “For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.”
Don’t believe the lie of the masses that call themselves christians, preachers, and ministers of the gospel. You cannot be saved by simply believing, “accepting Jesus” or saying a “sinners prayer”.
2 Corinthians 11:13-15 – “For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. 14 And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. 15 Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.”
Do not be fooled by the great multitude that follows after them. Matthew 7:13,14 (NKJV) “Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. 14 Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.”
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