Romans 4:1-5, “What shall we say then that Abraham our father, as pertaining to the flesh, hath found? For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God. For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness. Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt. But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.”
Our text passage makes it very clear that salvation is by faith alone, without works. I am so frustrated with pastors today who continually focus on repentance more than faith to be saved. The Gospel of John doesn't mention the word “repent” even once. This is because repentance is automatically included with believing. The word “believe” is mentioned 85 times in John.
Dear friend, God wants to give to you a free gift of eternal life. Ephesians 2:8-9, “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.” God does not demand that you give up your sins, make a mend, promise to do better, improving your life, surrender all to Jesus, turn over a new leaf, be willing to turn away from your sins, nor anything else to receive His free gift.
I heard a pastor recently teach that believing on Jesus is not enough to be saved. He simply meant that a person must also realize their sinnership, and I fully agree with that. You cannot merely turn over a new leaf from sin. to clean up your life to be saved. You need Jesus Christ! Contrariwise, you cannot merely trust Christ and fail to realize that you are a guilty sinner. Every person must answer the SIN QUESTION and the SON QUESTION.
- Do you know that you're a guilty sinner?
- Do you know that Jesus died on the cross to pay for your sins, was buried and raised up three days later, and that only though faith in Him can you be saved?
That is the simple Gospel. Nothing more is required. So when you hear wayward preachers perverting the Gospel, requiring tuning away from sins in addition to believing, you know that they don't know what they're talking about. Repentance must never be taught as being a separate action from believing. Therefore, it is impossible that someone could ever believe and yet not have repented. It is utterly impossible! You may follow Christ, but not believe. You may join a Christian organization, but not believe. You may live the Christian life, but not believe. But you cannot believe and yet still be lost!
The churches are filled with heresy today.