Wednesday, March 7, 2007

Salvation vs. the Sinner’s Prayer

Most Protestants I have talked with believe that salvation is a one time, "Jesus, I'm sorry" kinda deal - regardless that the Bible doesn't teach that. In a recent Christianity Today article, David Gushee writes about the non-Biblical easy salvation of the "sinner's prayer".

As the writer is a Baptist, he stays away from any any verses that might sound Catholic, and only quotes two sections of Luke.(luke 10:25-28 , luke 18:18-25). Although he does go on to expound on the idea of works, without actually using the term "works".

"Mediocrity and hypocrisy characterize the lives of many avowed Christians, at least in part because of our default answer to the salvation question. Anyone can, and most Americans do, "believe" in Jesus rather than some alternative savior. Anyone can, and many Americans sometimes do, say a prayer asking Jesus to save them. But not many embark on a life fully devoted to the love of God, the love of neighbor, the moral practice of God's will, and radical, costly discipleship".

I agree with the above quote, so much that I started reading the Bible objectively, and found out that those Wacky Catholics were right. The main verse that lead to my departure from my Evangelical church (a church of wonderful Christians, who are sadly only taught half truths) was to be found in John 6

53Jesus said to them, "I tell you the truth, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. 54Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. 55For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. 56Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in him.

Reading the above, Jesus' own words, and than giving only lip service (pun intended) to it on those rare "grape juice and matzo" Communion days, I knew that something was wrong.
Going on to read John 6:66 (yep, three 6's) we can actually see a prophesy of the Reformation.

66From this time many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed him.

Are those who deny Christ's teaching in John 6 still following Jesus? How many other verses in the Bible do we ignore because the "teaching is too hard", or sounds too Catholic. I would suggest to you my brothers and sisters, as well as Mr. Gushhe, to objectively read the Bible open to the fact the maybe the Church that Christ started, is actually teaching what Jesus taught.

For me, my Evangelical background was delicious mother's milk, but when I was ready for the meat, they could only offer me a juice box with crackers.

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