Archive for March, 2009

Bible Doctrine: Conversion

Posted: March 28, 2009 in Theology
The Doctrine of Salvation
Conversion
Greg Brandenburg
Grace Community Church Tyler
March 29, 2009
Based on the book Bible Doctrine by Wayne Grudem

What must I do to be saved? (Acts 16:29)

Conversion occurs at a point in time at which I respond to the call of God placing my trust in Christ for salvation.

What are the ingredients of conversion?

1. Knowledge (intellect)

Rom.10:14 recognizes that their is some intellectual knowledge necessary.

Rom.1 (see v. 32) indicates that this knowledge is not secret or cryptic only for the illuminati. But it will be rejected without a prior work of God on the heart (Rom.1:32). Knowing that Christ is the savior is primary but not enough to save. The demons know full well who Christ is (James 2:19)

2. Submission (will)

I can know who Christ is and be positively persuaded toward Him (sending Christmas cards with bible verses, fish on my car, cross tattoo) and still not be saved.

Nicodemus had a favorable impression of Christ and understood that He was from God (John 3)

King Agrippa was knowledgeable but something was lacking (Acts 26:27)

The lacking ingredient is submission. The old word is surrender which indicates a fight. I must submit to the fact that I can’t save myself and allow Christ to do it all for me. This is the act of repentance (metanoia) that necessarily accompanies salvation. Not to be confused with repentance as a change of behavior. The true sense of the word is the literal translation – change of mind.

If we understand the true sense of the word, we avoid the mistake of making repentance a prerequisite of salvation. Think of repentance as a change of mind while reading the following:
Mt.3:2, 4:17; Lk.24:46-47; Acts 2:37-38, 5:31, 17:30; Rom.2:4; 2 Cor.7:10

3. Trust

What changes in repentance? I change from trusting that I could save myself and continuing to be captain of my fate to trusting (submitting) to Christ completely as my Savior.

The word trust is superior to the word belief as it involves the will not just the intellect.

This is alluded to by the concept of receiving used by Paul – Jn.1:12

John 3:16 does not say “believe Him” but “believe IN Him” (pisteuo eis auton) or “believe into Him”. Like when we use the phrase “bought into” although that carries some negative connotations. Or the phrase made popular by televised poker “all in”. (I wish I had better analogies!)

Trust is reflected in the physical analogy of a person “coming to Christ.” The idea of a person approaching Christ to ask for forgiveness encompasses the idea of thought, trust and submission.

(John 6:37; 7:37; Mt.11:28-30)

What about the other kind of repentance – turning from sin?

Is this kind of repentance necessary for salvation? No, if we say that a person must change their life to be saved we deny that salvation is completely a work of God and our salvation becomes dependent on our work. (Rom.9:30-32; Eph.2:9)

2 Cor.7:9-10 – what sense of salvation is Paul referring to? Is he saying that they were saved (justified) becuase they repented or is he using it in the sense of them being sanctified. This is a letter to Christians. They were saved (justified) already. I believe this is sanctification, overcoming the power of sin and being conformed to the image of Christ. But even if it isn’t, it reflects the power of a change of mind over my behavior.

While this kind of repentance is not a requirement of salvation as it would then be based on works, it is a natural by-product. Naturally, any change of life is preceded by a change of mind. Christ asks believers to repent – Rev.3:19

When a person acknowledges that they can’t save themself and submits to Christ for their salvation, the commitment to turn from sin and change is built in.

What are the ingredients of repentance?

The process is similar. I must know that what I’m doing is wrong. I must submit by taking personal responsibility and experiencing remorse. Then commit to change.

Repentance is more than sorrow
Esau was remorseful over rejecting his birthright but did not repent. Heb.12:16-17 – why does the NIV use the literal translation for repent? He did not commit to change. He was sorry he lost the stuff but his attitude of indifference was still there.

The Doctrine of Salvation    
The Call
Greg Brandenburg
Grace Community Church Tyler
March 8, 2009
Intro: Rom.8:28 – Paul suggests this order: predestined, called, justified, glorified
I. Definition
    A. Effective calling – An act of God whereby He summons some to Himself through the Word in such a way that they will respond in saving faith.
        1 Pet.2:9 – 9  But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. 
        1 Cor.1:9 – 9  God, who has called you into fellowship with his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, is faithful. 
        Acts 2:39 – 39  The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off–for all whom the Lord our God will call.” 
        Rom.1:6 – 6  And you also are among those who are called to belong to Jesus Christ. 
        Through the preaching of the Word – 2 Thess. 2:14
        John 6:44 – no man can come…
    B. General calling
        John 1:11-12 – God’s call to all men
II. Elements of the Call
    A. Explanation of the facts about salvation – 1 Cor.15
    B. Personal response mt.11:28; Jn.1:11-12
    C. Being received – Jn.6:37
The Doctrine of Salvation    
Regeneration
Greg Brandenburg
Grace Community Church Tyler
March 15, 2009
I. Definition
Being born again.
The act of God which imparts spiritual life to those being saved.
John 3:3-8 (Jesus conversation with Nicodemus)
“A radical and complete transformation wrought in the soul by God the Holy Spirit by virtue of which we become ‘new men’ no longer conformed to this world but in knowledge and holiness of the truth created after the image of God.” – B.B. Warfield
II. Effects of
Changes the Disposition of Man
Before: Rom.3:9-18; 8:7
After: 
    Enlightened – 1 Cor.2:14-15; 2 Cor.4:6; Col.3:10
    Liberated – Rom.6:14, 17-22; Phil.2:13
    In lifestyle – 1 Jn.3:9; 1 Jn.5:3-4
    Love 1 Jn.4:7-8
    Protected from Satan – 1 Jn.5:18
    Fruits of the Spirit – Gal.5:22-23
III. Significance of the Phrase Born Again
Thoroughness
We are new creatures – “buried with Him out of reach of condemnation” 2 Cor.5:17; Gal.2:20
Totally An Act of God
John 1:13
Infants do not participate in their procreation nor do those who are dead in trespasses and sins (Eph.2:1-10)
IV. Development In Scripture
National renewal of Israel – Jer.31:31-34; Ezek.36:26-27
V. Relationship to the Call
Regeneration must be present to enable a man to respond to the call therefore they must be simultaneous (James 1:18; Acts 10:44; Acts 16:14)