A very large percentage of the "Christian" denominations teach that in order to be saved all one has to do is simply pray to God confessing that one is a sinner and acknowledging Jesus' death on the cross and asking God to save them and they are saved no matter where one is.
This simple prayer is usually called the "Sinner's Prayer" and one is encouraged to say some form of it, "To be saved."
NOWHERE, NOWHERE in New Testament Bible scripture is there ANY example of ANYONE being told to say ANY form of the "Sinner's Prayer" by anyone to be saved after Jesus rose from the dead and ascended to back to Heaven.
It simply is not there, anywhere. You can search till farms come back in vogue again, you won't find it. Check it for yourself, ask your preacher or other spiritual guide where it's at, It Simply Ain't There!
The Bible teaches baptism for the remission of sins by immersion is absolutely essential for salvation and for being in harmony with God. For the most part, the denominational world teaches baptism has no part in salvation. They maintain baptism is merely a public display of being saved.
If one has not been baptized for the remission of sins by immersion one is still in their sins and lost.
Now that we have dealt with what AIN'T in the Bible let's spend a few moments discussing what IS in the Bible and its relationship to what AIN'T by starting at the beginning to lay out what salvation is, why it is needed, how it works, and the way it works.
The question of God's existence is settled by the hundreds, if not thousands, of pieces of evidence found in the Bible.
In the first chapters of Genesis we read that God created all things good. One of the things he created "good" was man. Man was perfect in that he was made in the image of God. We were created in God's image contained within a wrapper of flesh formerly known as dust of the ground. God breathed into the man and he became a living being. Since God is a Spirit and has no definable form he has no lungs, no need to breathe, what obviously went into the man was a part of God Himself.
Since we are created in the image of God we have all the same powers God has, just on a unimaginably smaller scale. We can love, we can hate, we can create, we can destroy, and so on. And, like God, we have the power of choice.
God created the Garden of Eden to provide absolutely everything mankind needed to live with Him forever. The "Tree of Life" could be freely eaten, the Tree Of The Knowledge Of Good And Evil was touch the tree and die. The Tree Of The Knowledge Of Good And Evil was placed in the Garden of Eden to make a choice a reality, to give choice its power. God told Adam and Eve, "If you touch that tree you will die." Can you see "choice" here?
Now the death concept, "touch it and die" comes into play here. If God always was and always will be, He will never die. That spirit part of Him, His image, that he "breathed into man's nostrils," will never die or cease to exist. Since we are in His "image," we will never cease to exist.
The Bible tells of two deaths. There is physical death when we leave this world, and there is spiritual death when we are separated from God. Physical death is the result of not having access to the Tree Of Life in the Garden of Eden (Genesis 3:21-24).
But your iniquities have separated you from your God; And your sins have hidden His face from you,So that He will not hear. (Isaiah 59:2 NKJV)
If our iniquities, our sins, have separated us from our God, and we will never cease to exist, where will we be? Since God is pure good, He cannot be around sin, therefore, He cannot be close to us.
What is sin? Sin is ANY action against God, ANY action against our fellow man, His creation, and ANY action against ourselves. In actuality, all sins are against God. In Romans 1:18-31 we find a list of sins. It is not the only list of sins in scripture, but it covers anyone who misuses their power of choice.
What will God do with those who have misused their power of choice and in so doing have separated themselves from Him? He has created a place for them that is completely without Him.
“Then He will also say to those on the left hand, ‘Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels: (Matthew 25:41 NKJV)
The "everlasting fire" is the torment where the Rich Man in Luke 16 found himself after his earthly death and where all will go who have separated themselves from God.
Once we have mis-used our power of choice and have separated ourselves from God there is absolutely nothing we can do to undo the separation. We cannot un-ring the bell.
For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 6:23 NKJV)
The penalty for sin is unending spiritual separation from God. There is nothing we can do to redeem ourselves. We cannot pay our sin penalty because we forfeited that when we sinned.
Then God provided Jesus, the Christ, to pay our sin debt at the right time. Jesus came to earth, showed us how we could live our earthly lives so that we could live our spiritual eternal lives with God and all the heavenly host.
For when we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. (Romans 5:6 NKJV)
For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. (John 3:16 NKJV)
Jesus lived a sinless life, he owed no sin debt. He went to the cross and shed his unblemished blood to pay the sin penalty for all those who want their sin debt paid.
Here again, the power of choice comes in. God will not force us to do anything. If we want to spend eternity without God, He will allow us to make that choice even though He doesn't want anyone to make that choice.
The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance. (II Peter 3:9 NKJV)
Because Jesus paid the believer's sin debt with his sinless blood on the cross God will not allow any believer to be separated from His presence.
After Jesus was resurrected by God and before he ascended into Heaven he gave his disciples the Great Commission...
15 And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. 16 He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned. (Mark 16:15-16 NKJV)
Matthew relates the Great Commission...
18 And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen. (Matthew 28:18-20 NKJV)
We see this come to pass on Pentecost 50 days after Jesus rose from the dead. Peter preached the gospel to Jews from around the world who had gathered in Jerusalem. He told them the Messiah they and their ancestors had been waiting for so long had come and they had murdered him."
Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Men and brethren, what shall we do?” (Acts 2:37 NKJV)
One verse later Peter answers...
38 Then Peter said to them, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. (Acts 2:38 NKJV)
Notice the purpose, "for the remission of sins."
Read on down a little further to verse forty-seven...
47 praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved. (Acts 2:47 NKJV)
Can you see the Great Commission's "He who believes and is baptized will be saved;" in Acts 2:47? The saved are those who have had their sins remitted, verse thirty-eight.
Now let's look at Romans 1:16...
16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek. (Romans 1:16 NKJV)
How does God save? With the gospel, the same gospel Jesus meant when he gave the Great Commission. It is not "one" of the ways He saves, the gospel of Christ is the ONLY way God saves.
What is the gospel?
1 Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received and in which you stand, 2 by which also you are saved, if you hold fast that word which I preached to you—unless you believed in vain. 3 For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures, (I Corinthians 15:1-4 NKJV)
The gospel is the death, burial and resurrection of Christ Jesus "according to the scriptures." The "according to the scriptures" is so important Paul uses it twice.
Now let's look at...
7 and to give you who are troubled rest with us when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with His mighty angels, 8 in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 These shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power, (II Thessalonians 1:7-9 NKJV)
When Jesus comes again he is going to take vengeance on those "who do not know God, and on those "who do not obey the gospel" of our Lord Jesus."
How does one obey the death burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ? One may go to the cross, one may die on the cross, but one will not be resurrected the third day. The answer is found in Romans 6...
3 Or do you not know that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death? 4 Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised 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 united together in the likeness of His death, certainly we also shall be in the likeness of His resurrection, 6 knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin. (Romans 6:3-7 NKJV)
Do you see death of the gospel - "baptized into His death?" Do you see the burial of the gospel - "buried with Him through baptism?" Do you see the resurrection of the gospel - "just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father?"
In John 3:3 and in John 3:35, Jesus tells Nicodemus, "You must be born again." Not might, not should, not can, MUST! Can you see the "born again" in Romans 3:4?
1 There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit. (Romans 8:1 NKJV)
How does one get in "Christ"? Romans 6:3, one is "baptized into Christ Jesus."
21 There is also an antitype which now saves us—baptism (not the removal of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God), through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, (I Peter 3:21 NKJV)
NOWHERE in New Testament Bible scripture is there ANY example of ANYONE being told to say ANY form of the "Sinner's Prayer" by anyone to be saved after Jesus rose from the dead and ascended to back to Heaven.
It simply isn't there.
Any "church" that goes outside of the doctrine of Christ does not have God. Baptism by immersion for the remission of sins is a doctrine (teaching) of Christ.
9 Whoever transgresses and does not abide in the doctrine of Christ does not have God. He who abides in the doctrine of Christ has both the Father and the Son. (II John 1:9 NKJV)
If you need help finding a church that teaches Bible based salvation, call 706 816-7190
If we can be of assistance in any way, feel free to contact us.
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