Conversion turns the balance of the judgment,
so that God and His glory outweigh all carnal and worldly interests.
It opens the eye of the mind, and makes the scales of its native ignorance fall off,
and turns men from darkness to light.
The man who before saw no danger in his condition,
now concludes himself lost and forever undone
—except renewed by the power of grace.
He who formerly thought there was little hurt in sin,
now comes to see it to be the chief of evils.
He sees the unreasonableness, the deformity and the filthiness of sin;
so that he is affrighted with it, loathes it, dreads it, flees from it, and even abhors himself for it
(Rom 7:15; Job 42:6; Ezek 36:31)
~ Joseph Alleine
A friend of mine recommends that lost women go to Josh McDowell's website to acquire an understanding of how to be saved. I went there to check it out: http://www.josh.org/site/c.ddKDIMNtEqG/b.4203837/ I find two very disturbing particulars about the message McDowell has laid out on his website. It is easy to see how this type of false gospel contributes to the sexual immorality of the professing Christian women we are meeting & the mass murder of so many of their little babies. There are two grave errors on McDowell's webpage, entitled "How to know God personally";
#1. There is no mention of repentance (confess & forsake specific sin & original)
#2. There is a patently false assurance that a person is always saved (regenerated) simply by praying to receive Christ.
If you haven't done it already, I'd like to suggest that all of you consider listening to Hell's Best Kept Secret http://www.livingwaters.com/learn/hellsbestkeptsecret.htm & True & False Conversion: http://www.livingwaters.com/learn/trueandfalse.htm (I highly recommend listening to each of them twice in order to comprehend the radical difference there is between a biblical gospel & an unbiblical gospel which is so prevalent today.)
The false assurance of faith has created the tragic syndrome we see at the killing place (& when we witness at all other venues as well). Aborting women (including clinic workers & the abortionists who profess to be Christians) are innoculated against the true, biblical gospel, which requires repentance & holiness because they have 'prayed a prayer to receive Christ' & been assured that they are saved. Jesus told us that unless a person is born-again they cannot inherit the kingdom of heaven. Salvation is a Spirit-wrought change in the soul of a person. There is no biblical evidence that the idea of 'praying to receive Christ' causes a person to be saved. In fact, the bible teaches that the prayers of the unrepentant (wicked) are not only NOT HEARD by God but they are an abomination to God (Proverbs 15:8 & 28:9). Only the Holy Spirit can assure a person that they are born -again (regenerated). And Jesus taught that only those who endure to the end will be saved. (Matt 24:13) It is interesting to note that the scriptures reveal that 'even the demons believe'. But, obviously, the demons were not saved. The demons did not repent.
It is remarkable to think that someone like Josh McDowell would leave out the neccesity of genuine repentance when it was clearly taught by John the Baptist (Matt 3:1-10) by Jesus Christ (Matthew 4:17;9:13;11:20-21;Luke 13:2-5;15:7,10;24:46-48) & by the Lord's disciples (all through the book of Acts). The Bible says that God is commanding “that all should come to repentance” (2 Peter 3:9). Thomas Watson's The Doctrine of Repentance is the best book on biblical repentance that I have ever read. I hope that you will find time to read the whole book: http://www.fivesolas.com/watson/repent1.htm It's a LOT to chew but well worth savoring every mouthful.
John Piper addresses the genuine distinctive of being born-again from the counterfeit: http://www.desiringgod.org/ResourceLibrary/Sermons/BySeries/83/2490_You_Must_Be_Born_Again_Why_This_Series_and_Where_Are_We_Going/
Thomas Boston wrote a fine biblical treatise called: 'Ye Must Be Born Again'. http://www.pbministries.org/articles/Thomas%20Boston/boston_07-99.htm
Remembering the warning of Jesus in Matthew 7:22-29 & we must not tell people they can be saved any other way but by God's appointed way of salvation, which is the way of repentance (& accompanying holiness) & faith by regeneration of the Holy Spirit. The Savior warned that those who remained 'workers of iniquity' may have 'believed' but Jesus sent them away with the words that no one ever wants to hear on that great & terrible day of the Lord, the Day of Judgment: "I never knew you: depart from Me, ye that work iniquity." (see Luke 13:27 & Psalm 6:8 as well)
In commenting on Matthew 7:22-29, the bible commentator Matthew Henry observed:
Christ here shows that it will not be enough to own Him for our Master, only in word and tongue. It is necessary to our happiness that we believe in Christ, that we repent of sin, that we live a holy life, that we love one another. This is His will, even our sanctification. Let us take heed of resting in outward privileges and doings, lest we deceive ourselves, and perish eternally, as multitudes do, with a lie in our right hand. Let every one that names the name of Christ, depart from all sin. There are others, whose religion rests in bare hearing, and it goes no further; their heads are filled with empty notions. These two sorts of hearers are represented as two builders. This parable teaches us to hear and do the sayings of the Lord Jesus: some may seem hard to flesh and blood, but they must be done. Christ is laid for a foundation, and every thing besides Christ is sand. Some build their hopes upon worldly prosperity; others upon an outward profession of religion. Upon these they venture; but they are all sand, too weak to bear such a fabric as our hopes of heaven. There is a storm coming that will try every man's work. When God takes away the soul, where is the hope of the hypocrite? The house fell in the storm, when the builder had most need of it, and expected it would be a shelter to him. It fell when it was too late to build another. May the Lord make us wise builders for eternity. Then nothing shall separate us from the love of Christ Jesus. The multitudes were astonished at the wisdom and power of Christ's doctrine. And this sermon, ever so often read over, is always new. Every word proves its Author to be Divine. Let us be more and more decided and earnest, making some one or other of these blessednesses and Christian graces the main subject of our thoughts, even for weeks together. Let us not rest in general and confused desires after them, whereby we grasp at all, but catch nothing.
If you are just listening to Hell's Best Kept Secret & True & False Conversion for the first time, or if it's been a while & listened again, I would like to hear your thoughts. You will really be blessed by reading Joseph Alleine's brilliant book called Alarm to the Unconverted. This book addresses the mistakes people make regarding the gospel & conversion. It helped me get a clearer picture of the gospel & I trust it will bless you as well. You can read it online here: http://www.gracegems.org/28/alarm_to_the_unconverted.htm
Together for Life & Eternity,
Are you good enough or are you a lost cause?