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Doctrine of Salvation

July 23, 2010

DOCTRINE OF SALVATION
A.  Salvation is by Grace Through Faith in Christ.
1.  Faith is the only system of perception which is totally devoid of any human merit.  Only the object has merit, and in salvation the object of faith is our Lord Jesus Christ.  How much faith does it take to be saved?  Just a little bit more than no faith at all.
2.  The salvation work of Christ on the cross excludes anything being added to faith.  No works of any kind are allowed.  Salvation is by grace through faith, “not of works, lest any man should boast,” Eph 2:9.
3.  Grace is all that God is free to do for unsaved mankind on the basis of the saving work of Christ on the cross.  Grace is extended to homo sapiens as unbelievers, living under spiritual death in total depravity and total helplessness regarding salvation.
4.  Therefore, as a matter of grace, salvation is entirely the work of God.  It is the work of the Father in judging our sins, of the Son in being judged for our sins, and of the Holy Spirit in common and efficacious grace.  This is why the way of salvation is faith in Jesus Christ, and faith alone with no works added to it.

B.  Salvation is by Faith in Christ Plus Nothing.  There are three reasons for faith plus nothing as the condition for eternal salvation.
1.  Efficacious grace, documented by Eph 2:8-9.
2.  Our Lord’s utterance on the cross:  “TETELESTAI.”
3.  The direct statement of Scripture.

C.  Efficacious Grace.
1.  Efficacious grace fits into the pattern of faith alone.  When the spiritually dead person responds to the divine call or invitation to eternal salvation, he simply responds by believing in Jesus Christ.  This is classified as faith alone or faith plus nothing.
a.  When the spiritually dead person simply believes in Christ, God the Holy Spirit causes the faith to be effective for eternal life.  This is classified as efficacious grace, or the doctrine of effectual faith.
b.  The faith of the spiritually dead person indicates positive volition and a non-meritorious function which is compatible with grace.
c.  But because the spiritually dead person who believes in Christ is helpless, his faith is ineffective without the ministry of the Holy Spirit.
d.  So efficacious grace causes faith to be effective.
e.  However, no works can be added to faith.  The Holy Spirit can only make faith and faith alone effective for salvation.
f.  Works added to faith in Christ are dead works, and the Holy Spirit does not make dead works effective for salvation.  So if you add any works when you believe in Jesus Christ, you’re not saved at that point.  If you add anything to faith, God the Holy Spirit won’t touch it, and so there is no efficacious grace.
g.  The omnipotence of the Holy Spirit will make effectual only faith in Jesus Christ.
h.  The sequence of the pre-salvation grace ministry of God is as follows.
(1)  In common grace, the Holy Spirit makes the Gospel message perspicuous, not only to a spiritually dead person, but to a person with spiritual brain death.
(2)  God the Father invites the spiritually dead person to believe in Christ, which is called the divine call.
(3)  The spiritually dead person believes in Christ, and the Holy Spirit causes faith to be effective for salvation, which is called efficacious grace.
i.  Again, when any works are added to faith in Christ, the omnipotence of the Holy Spirit will not cause that faith to be effective.  The reason is because divine omnipotence and human works or power are mutually exclusive.
j.  Consequently, human works added to faith in Christ cancels faith.  For human works is human power, which is rejected by grace.
2.  Eph 2:8-9 supports salvation by faith alone.  “For you have been saved by grace through faith, and this [salvation] is not from yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest any man should boast.”
a.  Both grace (CHARIS) and faith (PISTIS) are in the feminine gender.
b.  Then follows the paratactic KAI, translated “and,” which is used to coordinate expressions which have no syntactical relationship in the Greek.
c.  The neuter gender of the immediate demonstrative pronoun HOUTOS cannot refer to either grace or faith.  “And this” refers to salvation in general.
d.  “This [salvation] is not from yourselves” because it is the grace ministry of the Holy Spirit.  We are spiritually dead, meaning we are under total depravity, total separation from God, and total helplessness to do anything about it.  Being spiritually dead, we cannot even understand the Gospel because we have brain death.  So first the Holy Spirit teaches us the Gospel.  Then when we believe in Christ, the Holy Spirit makes our faith effectual.
e.  So salvation is not from ourselves, because it is a matter of common grace, the divine call, and efficacious grace.  That’s why it says it is a gift from God.
f.  See point 4, salvation is not by works.
3.  Summary of Efficacious Grace.
a.  The very nature of real spiritual death at birth eliminates any system of salvation by works.  The spiritually dead person is incapable of doing anything to obtain salvation.
b.  Spiritual death at birth includes:
(1)  Total depravity, which means moral or immoral degeneration.
(2)  Total separation from God.
(3)  Total helplessness to attain a relationship with God.
(4)  The status quo of dichotomy, having only a body and soul.  Without a human spirit, we are unable to understand the simplest concepts of the Gospel.
c.  The very nature of common grace, the divine call, and efficacious grace eliminate any system of salvation by works.
d.  Since the unbeliever is spiritually dead, he is totally separated from God and totally helpless to do anything about it.  The spiritually dead person can only produce dead works, which have no validity with God.
e.  In the function of evangelism, there are two acts of human volition.
(1)  Hearing the Gospel is non-meritorious.
(2)  Believing in Jesus Christ is non-meritorious.
f.  Because of the nature of spiritual death, both of these functions performed in spiritual death are helpless, impotent, incompetent, and incapable of doing anything for salvation.  But God the Holy Spirit makes the Gospel understandable, and He picks them faith and makes it effective for salvation.
g.  The spiritually dead person is unable to understand what he hears (the Gospel), and powerless to make his faith in Christ effective for salvation.
h.  Therefore, the ministry of the Holy Spirit in making the Gospel understandable is common grace.  Then God the Father invites him to believe in Christ.  Finally, the omnipotence of the Holy Spirit makes his faith in Christ effective for eternal life, which is efficacious grace.
i.  The spiritually dead person can listen to the Gospel and believe in Christ.  But these two decisions come from spiritual death and are powerless to provide salvation.  They are unable to make faith effective.
j.  Therefore, pre-salvation clarification of the Gospel is the ministry of God the Holy Spirit.  The omnipotence of God provides the ability to believe in Jesus Christ, to accept the invitation.  This is done when we simply believe, for then the Holy Spirit makes it effective.

D.  Salvation is Not by Works.
1.  Verbal works.
a.  Pseudo-repentance is wrongly or erroneously construing repentance as feeling sorry for sin.  However, the word METANOEO means to change your mind.  To repent is simply the result of common grace.  You understand the Gospel and so you change your mind about Christ; that’s why you believe in Christ.  Repentance is a result of the ministry of the Holy Spirit in common grace and the divine invitation; it is not a condition of salvation.
b.  Invitation.  Salvation by invitation has a right and a wrong connotation.
(1)  The right invitation is made by our Lord.  He invites us to salvation.  The invitation to salvation follows the principle of coming to Christ, not inviting Christ to come to you.
(2)  By believing in Christ, we come to Christ at His invitation.  Mt 11:28, “Come unto Me, all you that labor and are heavy-laden, and I will give you rest.”  These words were uttered by our Lord Jesus Christ.
(3)  Jn 6:35, “Jesus said to them, `I am the bread of life.  He who comes to Me will never hunger.  He who believes in Me will never thirst.’”  So note that Jesus Christ invites us to salvation; we do not invite Him.
(4)  Jn 6:37, “The one that comes unto Me I will certainly not cast out.”
(5)  Jn 6:47, “He who believes in Me has eternal life.”
(6)  This is our Lord’s invitation to the spiritually dead.  We are spiritually dead as of the moment of our birth.  We cannot invite Jesus Christ anywhere.  He can only invite us, which He does through common grace.  This becomes efficacious grace when we believe in Jesus Christ.  Dead people do not issue invitations.
(7)  The spiritually dead person can hear and believe.  But only God the Holy Spirit can make the Gospel perspicuous and the faith effective.
(8)  Wrong invitations are blasphemous.  A wrong invitation is defined as inviting Jesus Christ to come to you.  In salvation, we come to Christ through believing in Him, as per His invitation.  There is no salvation by inviting Christ to come to us.
(9)  The wrong invitation is divided into two categories.
(a)  Inviting Christ into your heart.
(b)  Inviting Christ into your life.
(10)  The reason for these blasphemous ideas is the misunderstanding of Rev 3:19-20, which addresses believers only.  It is an invitation to rebound (1 Jn 1:9) after salvation for those believers out of fellowship with God.  “Those whom I love, I reprimand [warning discipline], I punish.  Therefore, be zealous and repent [through the use of the rebound technique].  Behold, I stand at the door and I keep knocking [warning discipline].  If anyone hears My voice [rebound motivation from warning discipline] and he opens the door [function of rebound], I will enter face to face with him [restoration of fellowship with the Lord and returning to life inside the divine dynasphere] and I will dine with him [fellowship with God through post-salvation epistemological rehabilitation], and he with Me [operation Z with emphasis on metabolization of doctrine].”
(a)  When Jesus Christ stands at the door and knocks, He is extending to us the invitation to rebound.
(b)  So this is not a salvation verse.  This refers to a post-salvation experience called rebound.
(11)  The wrong invitation is blasphemous, for it becomes salvation by works.  It adds something to faith in Christ.
(12)  The wrong invitation is defined as inviting Jesus Christ to come to you.  However, in salvation, we go to Christ through believing in Him as per His call and His invitation.  There is no salvation by inviting Jesus Christ to come to us.
(13)  The wrong invitation is divided into two general categories which are practiced today; those who practice this are not saved.  The first is inviting Christ into your heart; the second is inviting Christ into your life.
c.  Public acknowledgement of Christ as Savior is a failure to understand Rom 10:9-10.  Acknowledging Jesus Christ as Savior is a result of salvation; it is not the means.
(1)  Confusion of means and result has given the wrong impression to many spiritually dead persons as to the condition for salvation.
(2)  The Holy Spirit, in His ministry of efficacious grace, only causes faith and faith alone in Jesus Christ to be effective for eternal salvation.
d.  The omnipotence of the Holy Spirit does not make verbal works an effective part of salvation.
2.  Commitment salvation is closely related to verbal works.  It is putting the cart before the horse.
a.  Commitment confuses the salvation work of Jesus Christ on the cross with the believer’s dedication, noted in Rom 12:1.  Therefore, it makes Rom 12:1 and similar commitment passages a condition for salvation.
b.  Actually, commitment is a function that occurs after salvation.
c.  So distinction must be made between the mandate for salvation, which is faith in Jesus Christ, and commitment, which is actually a number of post-salvation decisions.
d.  When commitment is added to faith, there is no salvation.  The ministry of the Holy Spirit in efficacious grace does not make commitment effective for salvation.
3.  Lordship salvation is actually another verbal work, in which recognizing the lordship of Christ is added to faith.
a.  This false system of salvation uses a false epigram that says, “If Christ is not Lord of all, He is not Lord at all.”
b.  This statement ignores completely the Lordship of Christ as a result of the baptism of the Spirit.
(1)  Jesus Christ was Lord in eternity past, is Lord now, and always will be Lord.
(2)  The moment we believe in Christ, the baptism of the Spirit enters us into union with Christ.  Therefore, we share in His Lordship, and therefore He is our Lord.  Whether we know it or not is not the issue.  He is our Lord whether we know it or not.
c.  You do not make a commitment of lordship for salvation; that cancels your salvation.
d.  No one can make Christ Lord; only God the Holy Spirit can do that; and it is accomplished by the baptism of the Holy Spirit.  The baptism of the Holy Spirit must never be confused with the salvation ministry of the Holy Spirit in efficacious grace.  Logically, efficacious grace comes first.
e.  Lordship salvation is salvation by works, and therefore is not salvation.  The spiritually dead person does not have the ability to make Christ Lord of anything.  All he can do is believe in Christ, and then the Holy Spirit makes his faith effectual for salvation.
f.  The volition of the spiritually dead person cannot make Christ Lord or make any commitment.
4.  Ritual works include water baptism, circumcision, or the observation of the Eucharist as a condition for salvation.  Most common in this category is baptismal regeneration or salvation through faith plus water baptism.
a.  When water baptism is added to faith, there is no salvation because the omnipotence of the Holy Spirit cannot and does not make water baptism effective for salvation.
b.  The ministry of the Holy Spirit in efficacious grace makes faith in Jesus Christ and faith alone efficacious or effective for salvation.
5.  Salvation by morality is legalism.  Salvation by keeping the Law is Judaism.
a.  Morality is something the spiritually dead person can accomplish on his own as a spiritually dead person.  Therefore, salvation is obviously not by morality.  Anything a spiritually dead person can do is not a part of salvation.
b.  Morality is something the spiritually dead person can accomplish, either on his own, or through keeping the Mosaic Law, or through adherence to the laws of divine establishment.
c.  Anything a spiritually dead person can do is not a part of salvation.  For the ministry of the Holy Spirit in efficacious grace takes faith and faith alone and makes it effective for eternal salvation.
d.  Rom 3:20-22, “Because by the works of the law, no flesh shall be justified in His sight, for through the Law comes the knowledge of sin.  But now, apart from the Law, the righteousness of God has been manifested, being witnessed by the Law and the prophets [title for Old Testament], even the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all those who believe.”
e.  Rom 3:28, “For we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from the works of the Law.”
f.  Rom 4:4, “Now to the one who works for salvation, his wages are not calculated on the basis of grace, but on the basis of debt.”  The harder you work for salvation, the further you go from it.  You’re only digging a hole that gets deeper and deeper.  The more works you add to salvation, the deeper into the hole you go.  Your works “are not calculated on the basis of grace, but on the basis of debt.”
g.  Rom 4:5, “But to him who does not work for salvation, but believes in Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith receives credit for righteousness.”
h.  Rom 4:14, “For if those who are by means of the law [keeping law for salvation] are heirs, then faith has been made void and the promises have been canceled.”  This verse says that the only thing God the Holy Spirit can make effective for salvation is faith and faith alone in Jesus Christ.  When you add anything to faith, you make salvation void.  For the Holy Spirit cannot, under any set of circumstances, take any system of works and make it valid for salvation.
i.  When keeping the Law, i.e., Judaism salvation, or any other system of morality is added to faith in Christ, that faith is voided and nullified.  The omnipotence of God the Holy Spirit makes only faith in Christ effective for salvation.  Anything added, like keeping the Law or morality, cancels faith.
j.  Gal 2:16, “Nevertheless, knowing that a [spiritually dead] person is not justified by the works of the law, but through faith in Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Christ Jesus that we might be justified by faith in Christ, and not by the works of the law; for by the works of the law no flesh shall be justified.”
k.  Rom 5:1, “Therefore, being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
l.  Salvation by morality or by keeping the law is legalism and blasphemy.
m.  In fact, morality is not the Christian way of life.  Virtue from the Holy Spirit is the Christian way of life.  The Christian way of life is a supernatural way of life and demands a supernatural means of execution.  Only God the Holy Spirit can execute the Christian way of life.  Virtue includes morality but is infinitely greater.  Morality, not being part of the Christian way of life, but the filling of the Spirit, means that something greater is produced.
n.  Anything the unbeliever can do is not a part of the Christian way of life.  Anything the unbeliever can do is not the way of salvation.
6.  Salvation by emotion alleges salvation through “feeling saved,” or salvation through ecstatics or emotional activity.  This is the blasphemy of adding emotion to faith for the validity of faith.  However, the validity of faith in Christ comes from the Holy Spirit, never from emotion.
a.  Even after salvation, the filling of the Spirit is not associated with emotion; that only will occur in the Millennium.
b.  The emotions of the spiritually dead are not effective for salvation.  The ministry of the Holy Spirit in efficacious grace makes faith and faith alone in Jesus Christ effective for salvation.  The Holy Spirit does not make any form of emotion effective for salvation.
c.  No one is ever saved because he “feels saved.”  Furthermore, no one is ever saved by speaking in tongues, or alleging the “second blessing” through the baptism of the Spirit.
d.  Neither emotion nor feeling saved, nor a rosy glow experience, nor weeping tears of repentance at the altar, nor speaking in tongues is a condition or a part of salvation.
e.  The principle is that emotion is not a valid spiritual experience, either in salvation or in spirituality.
f.  The emotion in the soul is designed to be a responder to things you enjoy, but you must never assume that emotion has a spiritual connotation.  You may get emotional over understanding spiritual things, such as grace.  However, that emotion does not constitute the spiritual function of your life; it is merely a response to the spiritual function of your life.  In itself, it does not indicate the filling of the Spirit.  It does indicate appreciation.
g.  How you feel is inconsequential in salvation.  The Gospel does not emphasize how you feel; it emphasizes who and what Christ is.  Being spiritually dead, there was nothing we could do to impress God.
h.  When you believe in Christ, how you feel is never important; it’s what God has done for you that is important.  You may have an emotional response to your salvation, or you may feel terrible.  It makes no difference.
7.  Corporate works are those things we add to faith in Christ such as joining a church, tithing, being baptized, or taking communion.  In other words, corporate salvation is salvation associated with the activities of a local church.  In efficacious grace, the Holy Spirit makes faith and faith alone in Jesus Christ effective for salvation.  Efficacious grace does not include church membership or tithing for salvation.
8.  Psychological works alleges salvation through raising your hand during prayer, coming forward, walking an aisle, weeping tears of repentance at an altar, making a public declaration of faith, or jumping through some psychological hoop.
a.  These activities show no understanding of grace, for grace says you can be saved only through faith alone.  All of these are added to personal faith in Jesus Christ for salvation, and they cancel out faith.  The omnipotence of God the Holy Spirit makes only faith in Jesus Christ efficacious for salvation.
b.  Evangelists need not know how many are saved.  To say they want to know who you are so they can guide you to a local church is baloney.  Once you are born-again, you will seek doctrine if you are positive.  The baby desires the milk of the Word, says Peter.  But the emphasis today is on the human being rather than on the work of Christ on the cross.
c.  Tit 3:5, “He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy by the washing of regeneration and the renewing of the Holy Spirit.”  His mercy includes efficacious grace.  Regeneration is the creation of the human spirit to which God imputes eternal life.
9.  Roman Catholic salvation adds works to faith in Christ.  Salvation by Roman Catholic faith is not salvation.
a.  Many Roman Catholics, when questioned, claim that they believe that Christ died on the cross for their sins.  Hence, they allege to believe in Christ.  But at the same time, the Roman Catholic Church has a system of penance and works which they follow for salvation.  Those Catholics who follow that system of penance, indulgences, and works for salvation are not saved.  They have canceled any benefit of their faith by adding the works imposed upon them by the Roman Catholic Church.
b.  The Roman Catholic Church believes in purgatory, which they call an intermediate state after death designed for expiatory purification, especially from venal sins, i.e., sins capable of being forgiven.  Many light candles or say masses for the dead in this state.  There is no such thing; all this is works.
c.  However, many Roman Catholics do not depend upon penance or a system of works for salvation.  Those people are truly saved.
d.  Therefore, it is impossible to judge whether any Roman Catholic is saved or not.  Only the individual himself knows.  If he is depending upon the work of Christ on the cross alone, he saved.  But if he adds and follows the system of penance and works avowed by the Roman Catholic Church, he is not saved.
e.  The Roman Catholic view of purgatory, mortal sins, and penances form a system of ecclesiastical works which nullifies faith in Christ.
f.  The ministry of the Holy Spirit in efficacious grace makes faith in Jesus Christ only effective for salvation.  One of the forty things you receive at salvation is eternal life.  Therefore, you do not have to practice a system of works to ensure or regain your salvation, as alleged by the Roman Catholic Church and many other protestant churches.
g.  Therefore, some Roman Catholics are saved because at some moment they believed in Christ alone for salvation, totally apart from the ritual and penance imposed by the Church.  At the moment they believe in Christ totally apart from the works of the Catholic Church, they receive eternal life plus thirty-nine other things.
h.  The Roman Catholic belief that believing Christ died for their sins on the cross, followed by adherence to penance and indulgences to get into heaven, is not salvation.  Salvation is by faith in Jesus Christ alone.  The practice of any form of works is contradictory.  Therefore, faith is nullified by these works.
10.  The reverse invitation is not salvation.  The correct order of evangelism is as follows.
a.  Someone communicates the Gospel.  Under the ministry of common grace, the Holy Spirit makes only what is accurate lucid and understandable.
b.  Then follows the divine invitation of God the Father to believe in Jesus Christ for eternal salvation.
(1)  The invitation from God the Father is taught in Jn 6:44, “No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him.”  God the Father “draws” by the ministry of the Holy Spirit in making the Gospel clear.
(2)  The invitation from God the Son is found in Jn 10:27-28, “My sheep hear My voice and I know them, and they follow Me.  I give to them eternal life.  They shall never perish; no one shall snatch them out of My hand.”
c.  Finally, in efficacious grace, the omnipotence of the Holy Spirit makes faith in Christ effective for salvation.
d.  So in salvation, the spiritually dead person comes to Jesus Christ through personal faith in Him plus nothing.
e.  Therefore, in principle, the spiritually dead come to Christ for salvation, not the reverse.  The spiritually dead person does not invite Christ to come to him.
f.  There are two categories of reverse invitation which are blasphemous works.
(1)  Inviting Christ into your heart for salvation.
(2)  Inviting Christ into your life for salvation.
g.  Inviting Christ into your heart is answered in Jer 17:9, “The heart is more deceitful than all else and desperately wicked; who can know it?”
(1)  When the spiritually dead person invites Christ into his heart (right lobe), it is tantamount to inviting Christ into a garbage dump.
(2)  Spiritual death is not only total depravity of the heart, but total separation from God and total helplessness to invite Jesus Christ anywhere.
(3)  Furthermore, the ministry of the Holy Spirit in efficacious grace is limited to faith alone in Jesus Christ, making only that faith effective for eternal life.
(4)  Therefore, inviting Christ into your heart is not a condition for salvation, but a blasphemous expression of spiritual death.  Spiritual death is total helplessness to do anything for salvation, including inviting Christ anywhere.
(5)  In salvation, the spiritually dead person accepts the salvation invitation of God to believe in Christ; and you believe once.  The first time you believe in Christ is the moment you have eternal salvation.
(6)  In salvation, Jesus Christ does not accept your invitation for Him to enter your heart.  Your invitation is works, and Tit 3:5 tells us, “not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us.”  Eph 2:9, “not of works, lest any man should boast.”
h.  Other people say that you must invite Christ into your life.
(1)  Rom 5:12 answers that:  “Therefore, just as through one man sin entered into the world and death [spiritual death] by sin, so spiritual death passed upon all men because all have sinned.”
(2)  In other words, how can you invite Christ into your life when you are spiritually dead?  Dead people cannot give invitations.
(3)  The imputation of Adam’s original sin to the genetically formed old sin nature at the moment of birth results in spiritual death, which means at least three things.
(a)  Total depravity due to our old sin nature.
(b)  Total separation from God.
(c)  Total helplessness to establish a relationship with God on the basis of anything we can do, i.e., human works.
(4)  Inviting Jesus Christ into your life is tantamount to inviting Him into total depravity or spiritual death.  It is like inviting Christ into a tomb.
(5)  The spiritually dead person cannot invite Christ into his life or anywhere else.  Therefore, inviting Christ into your life is not salvation.
(6)  Issuing an invitation to Christ is something we are doing.  A spiritually dead person can only produce dead works.  A spiritually dead person cannot in any way invite Christ anywhere, neither into his heart nor into his life.
(7)  You do not invite Christ into a spiritually dead life.  Christ did something about your spiritually dead life:  He was judged for your sins on the cross.
(8)  When the Scripture mandates us to believe in Christ, it doesn’t say you must also invite Him into your heart or into your life.  That is salvation by works which is not salvation at all.  You do not invite Jesus Christ into spiritual death and total depravity.
(9)  Inviting Christ into your heart or life excludes faith.  Anything that excludes faith in Jesus Christ cannot provide eternal salvation.
(10)  Inviting Christ into your heart or life is an act of emotional or irrational legalism.  It is dead works.  The dead works of the unbeliever are judged at the Great White Throne, Rev 20:11-15.
(11)  Salvation through faith in Christ is tantamount to coming to Christ, not Christ coming to you to enter your heart or your life.
(12)  In salvation, the spiritually dead person accepts the invitation to believe in Christ, and God the Holy Spirit uses that.
(13)  We go to Jesus Christ as the perfect God-man.   He does not come to us as one who is spiritually dead and totally depraved.  We simply believe in Jesus Christ and God the Holy Spirit makes our faith effective.  Then we enter into a relationship with God, not on the basis of works, but on the basis of faith.
(14)  Jn 3:16, “For God loved the world so much that He gave His Son, the uniquely-born One, that whosoever believes in Him shall never perish but have eternal life.”
(15)  Jn 3:18, “He who believes in Him is not judged; but he who does not believe is judged already because he does not believe in the uniquely-born Son of God.”
E.  Our Lord’s Utterance:  “TETELESTAI.”
1.  The second reason for the fact that salvation is by faith plus nothing is the statement of our Lord on the cross immediately after He was judged for the sins of the world.
2.  After bearing and being judged for our sins, Jesus Christ was still very much alive, as noted by the fact that He said, “TETELESTAI.”  This is translated “Finished in the past with the result that it stands finished forever.”
3.  Jn 19:30, “Therefore, when Jesus had received the [G.I.] wine, He said `TETELESTAI.’  And then He pushed His head forward and delivered over His spirit [to God the Father].”  TETELESTAI is the perfect passive indicative of TELEO.
a.  The intensive perfect refers to a completed action with emphasis on existing results of that past action.  Hence, it refers to a present state resulting from a past action.  The present state is that salvation is available.  The past action is that Jesus Christ was judged for our sins.  The intensive perfect states in a strong way that a thing is.  It is also known as the perfect of existing state.  The past action is a completed action so that the present state is a continuing status quo.  The intensive perfect combines punctiliar and linear action.  In the intensive perfect, the linear action is in ascendancy.  In other words, our Lord said, “It is finished in the past with the result that it stands finished forever.”
b.  The passive voice represents the subject, Jesus Christ, as being acted upon by someone else, i.e., God the Father, who imputed our sins to Jesus Christ and judged everyone of them.  The omnipotence of the Father imputed all our sins to Christ on the cross.  The justice of the Father judged every sin in the history of the human race.  So Jesus Christ received the action of the verb, being judged for the sins of the human race.  He completed that action on the cross while He was still alive.  Therefore, Rom 5:8 says, “God commends His love toward us in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died as a substitute for us.”
c.  The mood is declarative for a dogmatic statement of doctrine.
4.  Jn 19:30 therefore indicates that the work of salvation was completed on the cross.  When something is completed, you can’t add anything to it.  The one thing in which you can take absolutely zero credit is faith; none of us earn or deserve salvation.
5.  So the only condition for eternal life is non-meritorious personal faith in Jesus Christ, whose substitutionary spiritual death on the cross provided all the efficacious work for salvation.  That is why our Lord said after He had been judged for our sins, “Finished.”  Salvation was completed on the cross.  There is nothing we can add to it now or ever.
6.    Eternal salvation is a free gift which is compatible with God’s policy of grace.  Therefore, it is attained by faith alone in Jesus Christ.
7.  You can take zero credit for your faith.  By adding anything to faith for salvation, man is in competition with God, and that alone is blasphemous.

F.  The Direct Statement of Scripture.
1.  Jn 16:8-9, “When He [Holy Spirit] comes, He will convince [convict] the world concerning sin; concerning sin, because they do not believe in Me.”
a.  Our personal sins are not an issue in salvation.  They were an issue at the cross, and Jesus Christ was already judged for every one of them.
b.  Therefore, the Holy Spirit, who convicts us with regard to salvation never convicts us with regard to our personal sins.  The one sin He convicts us of is the only sin for which Christ could not die:  the sin of rejection of Him, the sin of unbelief.
2.  Jn 3:15, “That everyone who believes in Him may have eternal life.”
3.  Jn 3:16, “For God loved the world so much that He gave His Son, the unique One, in order that anyone who believes in Him shall never perish [eternal security] but have eternal life.”
4.  Jn 3:18, “He who believes in Him [Christ] is not judged, but he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the unique person of the Son of God.”  Notice believe is repeated three times in this verse; no works are added to believe.
5.  Jn 3:36, “He who believes in the Son has eternal life, but he who does not believe in the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.”  The issue in salvation is that you either believe in Christ once, or you do not believe.
6.  Jn 6:47, “Truly, truly, I say to you:  he who believes in Me has eternal life.”
7.  Jn 11:25, “Jesus said to her [Martha], ‘I am the resurrection and the life.  He who believes in Me shall live, even if he dies.’”
8.  Jn 11:26, “And everyone who lives and believes in Me shall never die.”  You have to believe while you’re alive; there is no second chance after you die.
9.  Jn 20:31, “But these have been written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you might have life through His person.”
10.  Acts 16:31, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shall be saved; and if anyone in your household believes in Christ, they too are saved.”  Notice that the command is to believe; nothing is added to it.
11.  Gal 3:26, “For you are all the children of God [royal family] by faith in Christ Jesus.”  Notice that nothing is added to faith.
12.  Rom 1:16, “I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ, because it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first, also to the Gentile.”  Everyone is saved the same way, both Jew and Gentile.  They are saved, not by keeping the Law, but only by believing in Christ.
13.  Rom 3:20-22, “Because by the works of the Law no flesh will be justified in His sight, for through the Law is the knowledge of sin.  But now, apart from the Law, the righteousness of God has been manifested, being witnessed by the Law and the prophets [Old Testament], even the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all those who believe.”
14.  Rom 3:28, “For we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from the works of the Law.”
15.  Rom 4:4-5, “Now to the one who works for salvation, his wages are calculated, not on the basis of grace, but on the basis of debt.  But to him who does not work for salvation, but believes in Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith receives credit for righteousness.”
16.  Rom 4:14, “For if those who by means of the Law are heirs, then faith has been made void, and the promises have been canceled.”
17.  Gal 2:16, “Nevertheless, knowing that a [spiritually dead] person is not justified by the works of the Law, but through faith in Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Christ Jesus that we might be justified by faith in Christ, and not by the works of the Law; because by the works of the Law no flesh shall be justified.”
18.  How are we justified in the eyes of God?  Rom 5:1, “Therefore, being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
19.  Eph 2:8-9, “For you have been saved by grace through faith, and this [salvation] is not from yourselves, it is a gift of God; not of works lest any man should boast.”
a.  The only way of salvation is one act of personal faith in Jesus Christ with nothing added to it.
b.  To add to faith in Christ for salvation is no salvation at all.  If when you believe in Christ, you are depending upon something else besides faith in Christ, you are not saved.
20.  Phil 3:9, “And may be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own derived from the Law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which comes from God on the basis of faith.”
21.  2 Tim 3:15, “And that from childhood, you have known the Holy Scriptures which are able to give you wisdom that leads to salvation through faith, which is in Christ Jesus.”
22.  Even if you later renounce your faith in Christ, you are still saved.  2 Tim 2:11-13, “Faithful is the Word, for if we have died with Christ [and we have: retroactive positional truth], we shall also live with Christ.  If we endure [suffering for blessing], we shall reign with Him.  If we deny Him, He will deny us [escrow blessings for time and eternity].  If we do not believe [after we’re saved], He remains faithful; He cannot deny Himself.”  God the Father cannot deny the indwelling of the Trinity.
23.  1 Jn 5:11-13, “And this is the deposition:  that God has given to us eternal life, and this life is in His Son.  He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son does not have life.  These things I have written to you who believe in the person of the Son of God, in order that you may know that you have eternal life.”
24.  Salvation is said to be by grace.
a.  Rom 3:24, “Being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.”  Grace excludes human works.
b.  Rom 4:4-5, “Now to the one who works for salvation, his wages are credited, not on the basis of grace, but on the basis of debt.  But to him who does not work for salvation, but believes in Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is credited for righteousness.”
c.  Rom 4:16, “For this reason, it is by means of faith, in order that it might be on the basis of grace.”
d.  Rom 5:1-2, “Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we also have obtained an introduction by faith into this grace in which we stand.”
e.  Rom 5:15, “But the free gift of salvation is not like the transgression.  For if by the transgression of one man [Adam] many died [spiritual death], much more did the grace of God and the gift by grace of that one man, Jesus Christ, abound to many.”
f.  Rom 5:17, “For if by the transgression of one [Adam], [spiritual] death reigned through one [Adam], much more those who have received the abundance of grace, and the gift of righteousness will reign in life through that one, Jesus Christ.
g.  Eph 1:6-7, “Resulting in the praise of the glory of His grace, by which grace He has graced us out in the beloved, in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins according to the riches of His grace.”
h.  2 Tim 1:8-9, “Therefore, do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord or of his prisoners, to join with me in suffering with reference to the Gospel on the basis of the power of God [doctrine of common grace], who saved us and called us with a holy calling [divine call], not according to our works, but according to His own purpose in grace which He has given to us in Christ Jesus from all eternity past.”
i.  Heb 2:9, “We see Jesus, made a little lower than angels, for the sake of the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, that He, by the grace of God, might taste death as a substitute for all.”
G.  Syllogistic logic deduces salvation is by faith alone.
1.  The form of argument from Aristotle is called a syllogism, which is an argument whose conclusion is supported by two premises.  There is a major premise, a minor premise, and a conclusion.  The major premise contains the major term which is the predicate of the conclusion.  The minor premise contains the minor term which is the subject of the conclusion.
a.  For example, all A is B.  All B is C.  Therefore, all A is C.  This is called deductive reasoning.
b.  For example, all persons are born spiritually dead.  I am a person.  Therefore, I am born spiritually dead.
2.  The inference system includes the five indemonstrables.
a.  If 1, then 2.  But 1, therefore 2.
b.  If 1, then 2.  But not 2, therefore not 1.
c.  Not both 1 and 2.  But 1, therefore not 2.
d.  Either 1 or 2.  But 1, therefore not 2.
e.  Either 1 or 2.  But not 1, therefore 2.
3.  The five indemonstrables applied to the Word of God.
a.  If Christ died for the sins of the world, then He is the only Savior.  But Christ died for the sins of the world, therefore He is the only Savior.
b.  If salvation is by works, then only good people or working people are saved.  But only good people are not saved, therefore salvation is not by works.
c.  You are not saved by both faith and works.  But by faith alone, therefore not by works.
d.  Either you are saved by grace through faith alone or by works.  But you are saved by grace through faith, therefore not by works (Eph 2:8-9).
e.  Either you are saved by works or by faith alone.  But you are not saved by works, therefore you are saved by faith alone.

H.  Christ died as a substitute for us once; we believe in Him once.
1.  Heb 9:27-28, “And just as it is destined for mankind to die once, but after this the judgment, so also Christ having been sacrificed once for the purpose of taking away the sins of the many.”
2.  Rom 5:8 has the preposition of substitution:  HUPER plus the genitive of EGO in the plural.  “But God demonstrates His own love toward us [impersonal love for all mankind in the status of real spiritual death] in that while we were yet sinners [objects of divine impersonal love], Christ died as a substitute for us [substitutionary spiritual death on the cross].”
3.  1 Pet 3:18, “Because Christ also died once for our sins, the righteous One [impeccable humanity of Christ] as a substitute for the unrighteous ones.”
a.  Notice how this word “once” keeps occurring.  It is the Greek word HAPAXZ.
b.  HUPER plus the genitive of advantage of ADIKOS means “on behalf of the unrighteous ones,” or better, “as a substitute for the unrighteous ones.”
c.  In both Rom 5:8 and 1 Pet 3:18, Christ died as a substitute for us.  Also both verses say Christ died once.  So our response to the one act of sacrifice is one act of faith, and faith alone.
4.  Jn 3:16, “For God loved the world so much [impersonal love for all mankind] that He gave His Son [deity of Jesus Christ in Hypostatic Union], the uniquely-born One [humanity of Jesus Christ in Hypostatic Union], that everyone who believes in Him shall never perish but have eternal life.”  By one act of faith, we have eternal life.
5.  Gal 3:13, “Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the Law by means of becoming a curse instead of [in place of, on behalf of, as a substitute for] us; for it stands written [Dt 21:23], `Cursed is everyone who hangs on a cross.’”
a.  The Law puts a curse on sin.  Jesus Christ as our substitute was judged for our sins.
b.  So again, we find HUPER plus the genitive of advantage plural from EGO, translated on behalf of (instead of, as a substitute for) us.
c.  In Gal 3:13 the doctrine of redemption is used because it is talking about the Mosaic Law.  The Mosaic Law is designed to put us into the slave market of sin.  The only way we can be redeemed from the slave market of sin, as members of the human race, is for someone to pay for our freedom.  Jesus Christ paid for our freedom on the cross.  That is the meaning of redemption.
d.  Yet the Mosaic Law is used by many as a means of salvation.  Such people add the works of the Law to faith in Jesus Christ.  That is why Rom 3:20 says, “Because by the works of the Law, no flesh shall be justified in His sight, for through the Law is the knowledge of sin.”
e.  The purpose of the Law is to make us aware of the fact that we are sinners with an old sin nature.
f.  Rom 3:28 adds, “But we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from the works of the Law.”  This means faith alone, and only one time is necessary for us to believe in Christ.
g.  Just as Christ died once for our sins, so one time only we believe in Jesus Christ, and the first time we do, we possess eternal life.
h.  Gal 2:16, “Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the Law, but through faith in Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Christ Jesus that we might be justified by faith in Christ, and not by the works of the Law; for by the works of the Law no flesh shall be justified.”  One act of faith in Christ is all it takes to possess eternal life.
5.  1 Jn 4:9, “By this the love of God [impersonal love for all mankind] was manifest in our case, because God has sent His unique Son into the world, in order that through Him we might be saved.  By this, divine love exists [impersonal love for all mankind], not because we have loved God, but because He loved us and sent His Son to be a propitiation for our sins.”
a.  Propitiation means that once God the Father imputed and judged all our sins in Christ on the cross, at that very moment He was satisfied completely with the work of our Lord.
b.  There is only one work of salvation that satisfies God the Father, and that is the saving work of Jesus Christ on the cross.

I.  Grace in salvation is the work of God.
1.  God the Father imputed our sins to Jesus Christ on the cross.
2.  God the Son received the imputation and judgment for our sins on the cross through His substitutionary spiritual death.
3.  God the Holy Spirit reveals the plan of salvation to the spiritually dead person under the doctrine of common grace.
4.  So an invitation from God is extended.  When that invitation is accepted, it is simply by believing in Jesus Christ that God the Holy Spirit makes our faith effective.
5.  Eph 2:8-9, “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this [matter of being saved] is not from ourselves; it is a gift from God, not from works, lest any man should boast.”
6.  Therefore, the whole principle of eternal salvation is faith and faith alone.