Tag Archives: salvation

The Obedience of Faith

We have received grace and apostleship through Him to bring about the obedience of faith among all the nations,  on behalf of His name,

Romans 1:5 

   Have you ever tried to explain a word or phrase to a young mind? And in the moment of explanation you question whether you actually know what it means yourself, or wonder how you came to understand a thing you can’t explain, you just know in your gut? We do this funny little thing with words and phrases. The more we hear a phrase we tend to take for granted it’s meaning. Sometimes the meaning we ascribe to it is correct, and sometimes it isn’t. 

   Here Paul says that the gospel is preached to bring about the obedience of faith and the meaning I was taught growing up was that means people should obey the command to believe in Jesus. Sounds good, right? But if we look at the context that surrounds this verse it seems Paul is speaking of something much greater than obeying a call to give mental assent to the gospel. 

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Posted by on July 15, 2019 in Soteriology


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Faith and Works

A reflection on Romans 1-4

As a child and young adult I was raised with the teaching of salvation by faith alone. This doctrine was taught as a contrast to the Roman Catholic teaching of salvation by works (as it was explained to me). Now this is not an attempt to exhaustively address the RC doctrine of salvation and how faith and Works play out in that teaching; I’ll leave that to someone else. This aim is to address the understanding that was delivered to me as a child; and to examine a more biblical view of faith and Works in contrast to it.

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Posted by on July 10, 2019 in Soteriology


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Once Saved Always Saved? “BOLOGNA!”, I say:

{This article is a bit lengthy, but I hope not without benefit to the reader.}

There is one question that has been asked by 99.9999999% of professing Christians at some point in their life – “How do I know I’m saved?”. And there are multiple ways we have attempted to answer this question in a biblically comforting way.  Read the rest of this entry »


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“Go to He…” What? There’s More?!

“Heaven is great, but it’s not the end of the world.” The first time I heard this N.T. Wright statement was 5 years ago, and it was quoted to me by a friend. It gave me pause, and I kept turning it over in my head. I just couldn’t stop thinking about it. Why? Because it ran counter to what I had been taught about the aim of my Salvation.

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The Word of God is not “The Word of God”:

I recently read a missionary letter where the man was telling how they want to make the Scriptures available to the people of the region he plans to work with in their own language. He said, “1 Peter 1:23 states, “Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth forever.” And Romans 10:17 states, “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” In modern English, If you do not have the Bible (the Word of God), you cannot see people saved. WE WANT TO SEE PEOPLE SAVED!”

I know this man personally and there is no doubt that he has a heart for people and is concerned about their eternal destiny. My question for this post concerns his view of Scripture – How accurate is he? Read the rest of this entry »


Posted by on July 25, 2011 in Church History, Evangelism, Scripture


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Chasing the Moon

Okay, I watched Despicable Me with my boys last night as it just hit RedBox yesterday. It’s a cute movie, and was a great way to express the fact that we are relational beings.

Gru was on a quest to be the world’s best villain, but deeper than that, he had a childhood dream to fly to the moon. He obtained 3 orphan girls as part of his scheme to obtain a shrink ray so he could not only fly to the moon, but shrink it and take it home. He had developed a plan that literally promised him the moon, and he succeed! He had the moon in his hands! But something had happened, the girls had shown him love and he responded in love. The girls were in danger and Gru traded the moon for the three little ones.

You know what’s so profound about this little story? Why it touches our hearts. Our entire culture is consumed with obtaining things. I deal with people on a daily basis who can’t afford their mortgage payments because they keep spending their money to buy other things that are not a necessity of life. They have an insatiable desire and somehow think they are owed whatever pet luxury they have a hankering for. There are men who are working their life away to have nice possessions or be considered successful and their families are practically fatherless. And along comes Despicable Me – a story of a man who obtained the moon and traded it all for the love of three little children. A man who realized that possessions don’t hold a candle to relationships. We are relational beings, and we are created for a relationship with our Maker. We try to fill this with other things, refusing to be bound by the yoke of committing to recklessly loving our God. Instead, we trade His easy yoke for one that takes us to the grave. Either way we will commit to something, either way we bind ourselves to something, we promise our love to something. Like a man who refuses to marry as he doesn’t want to give up his joys of freedom, is incapable of enjoying the joys that come with marriage. Either decision is a yoke that binds us to it, and keeps us from other things.

So how is it that as one watches Despicable Me they all agree that he made the right choice? Why is it that we all sympathize with Gru and, if he had not surrendered the moon,would have called him an insensitive, despicable, self-centered, jerk? What is it that causes us to not view those little cartoon children as a mere nuisance, as one would an ant that must be squashed before he gets into my sweet tea glass?

The Creator of you and the moon desires a relationship with you and gave more than the moon to show His love for you. The Creator became flesh and He took the sin of the world on Himself and carried it to the grave. Jesus, God incarnate, took our sins upon himself and all the wrath they brought – full force – and He absorbed it all so that we might live. God did this that He might be just and the One who justifies him who has faith in Christ Jesus.

Are you still chasing the moon?

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Posted by on January 12, 2011 in Culture, God, Jesus Christ


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