I heard a wonderful sermon quote today...
“Salvation is a gift, paid for by Christ, offered in Love, received through simple faith. But you know the natural man and our natural tendency, is we think we gotta do something (e.g., 'There's no free lunch!'). And even there are those today who say, that: 'We need to count the cost, in order to be saved.' You know what, I've counted the cost and you know what I've found out? It was paid in full! That's the GOOD NEWS! In fact, you can always tell a true Gospel from a false gospel. It's very simple—The true Gospel always points you to CHRIST; The false gospel always points to YOU.” —Pastor Dennis Rokser
Here are the heretical words of Billy Graham from his website. This is a false Gospel which cannot produce the new birth...
How To Be Sure You're SavedBilly Graham has horribly confused discipleship with salvation. I love what Pilgrim's Progress author John Bunyan (1628-1688) rightly said:
First, you must recognize your need.
Second, you must understand the cross.
Third, you must count the cost.
He also said, “Which of you, intending to build a tower, does not sit down first and count the cost? … So likewise, whoever of you does not forsake all that he has cannot be My disciple” (Luke 14:28, 33).
Many people come to Christ without first counting the cost. The cost includes repentance, the forsaking of sin, and a continual, daily, open acknowledgment of Christ in your life.
Fourth, you must take a definite step.
One day at Stanford University, a student of a non-Christian faith came to me and said he was convinced that Jesus is the Son of God but said he couldn’t confess Him publicly. He said that back in his own country the cost socially would be too great.
I had to tell him that the Bible says: “Whoever confesses Me before men, him I will also confess before My Father who is in heaven. But whoever denies Me before men, him I will also deny before My Father who is in heaven” (Matthew 10:32-33).
Like the rich young ruler of old, the student went away sad. He had counted the cost and was not able to pay the price of open acknowledgment of Jesus Christ as his Savior.
We ask people to make a public confession of Christ in our meetings because Christ demanded a definite commitment. Christ had reasons for demanding that people openly follow Him. He knew that an unwitnessed vow is no vow at all. Until you have surrendered to Christ by a definite act of your will, you are not a Christian.
SOURCE: How to Be Sure You’re Saved | Decision Magazine | BGEA
“If you do not put a difference between justification wrought by the man Christ without and sanctification wrought by the Spirit of Christ within, you are not able to divide the Word aright; but contrariwise, you corrupt the Word of God, and cast stumbling blocks before the people.” [emphasis added] —Evangelist John Bunyan
They were called to be saints. That doesn't mean that God chose them to salvation. Pastor Ralph Yankee Arnold gets it correct, who said this:Romans 1:6-8, “Among whom are ye also the called of Jesus Christ: To all that be in Rome, beloved of God, called to be saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ. First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, that your faith is spoken of throughout the whole world.”
Calvinism lie = They believe because they were chosen.
The truth = We were chosen because we believe!
Billy says that we cannot earn our salvation no matter what we do, no matter how many good deeds we do, but immediately afterward he tells everyone that they must change their behavior, submit their inner wills to Christ, and to stop sinning. He gives verses that tell us to believe on Christ alone and that salvation is a free gift given to us the instant we believe, such as John 3:16 and Ephesians 2:8-9, yet he turns right around and says that we must make a 180-degree change in our direction, that it takes a lot of effort on our part to do these things, and that we should determine with all of our efforts to follow Christ.He then says that we don’t have the power to follow Christ unless the Holy Spirit enables us to do so. Billy will then usually tell us again that we must commit our lives to Christ and that we must become practicing disciples of Jesus in order to be born again, but at the same time, he knocks everyone off balance when he turns right back around to tell his audience that salvation is free and that it is received by faith alone and that we cannot do a single thing to earn it. Then Billy demands again and again that we must quit sinning in order to be saved, but directly afterward he rotates back and forth from “quit sinning” to “you can do nothing of yourself to earn it.”
He says that salvation is free, but immediately afterward he says that we must carefully consider the costs of following Christ. “Costs” is the opposite of “free,” yet, nobody will dare to question Billy Graham about the validity of what he is saying because he is, in fact, so forceful in his tone of voice and in his facial expressions that I am convinced people are afraid of him. The glare alone from his stern stare that one can easily see in his eyes as they sweep across the masses of people in his audience is enough to keep people from ever questioning the validity of his teachings.
Again and again, Billy says that salvation is not of yourselves, that it is a free gift, but then quickly does a u-turn and makes your salvation dependent upon quitting your sins and devoting your life to discipleship. Then, to make matters worse, Billy makes everlasting life in heaven dependent upon your walking down the isle and making your decision to follow Christ “as your Lord” public. Billy says that Christ will not acknowledge you before His Father if you do not acknowledge Him before other people, which, in context, means that you will not go to heaven unless you tell other people that you have made a decision to follow Christ.Then Billy will usually tell his audience that salvation is, again, a free gift that cannot be earned no matter what we do. It is, by far, Graham’s terse persona that captivates and influences an audience rather than the Holy Spirit of God. Hypothetically speaking, how would you feel if you were in a car with someone the likes of whom I am about to describe? Imagine you are trying to get somewhere that you’ve never been before and the person next to you says this:
“Okay, take a left, and then take a right, and then stop, back up, take another right. Wait. Take another left. My map is correct! Trust me! Stop. Go right again, then turn left. Can’t you go any faster? Okay, turn right here. Stop. Take a left, then take another left. Wait. Go back. Can’t you do anything right? Start over. Go right, then left, go sharply right now. Stop! Can’t you follow my directions? Back up and take another right. Wait, go left. Trust me, I know where I’m taking you!” That, reader, is the sad yet accurate equivalent of the plan of salvation according to Billy Graham. It will get you nowhere. “There is an increasing number of ‘evangelicals’ today who are preaching that in order for a man to be saved he must not only receive Christ as his Savior, but also must make Him absolute Lord and Master of his life. This doctrine has been termed “Lordship salvation” and has absolutely no support from the Word of God. It is, in fact, another subtle way Satan has invented to get Bible-believing men to add works to salvation without, perhaps, their realizing it, and to do it in such a way that it sounds spiritual and good” (Stanford, 87-88).
We would all agree that quitting sins and bad habits is the right thing to do, and that following Christ and doing the things that He says to do is the right and honorable way to live in every case or situation we might find ourselves in, but quitting your sins and bad habits, as well as following Christ to the best of your ability, are not part of God’s simple plan of salvation. As good as the Christian Lifestyle is, no aspect of it is included in God’s salvation contract with humankind. Living the Christian Lifestyle and doing all of those wonderful deeds that we are supposed to do as born again Christians comes “after” we are saved, not before.
SOURCE: I NEVER KNEW YOU (.pdf), by Michael P. Bowen; by Barbour Books, © 2009; pages 137-138
1st Corinthians 15:1-4, “Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:”
(Pastor Dennis Rokser)
“The issue at salvation isn't repenting of your sins, the issue is changing your mind about the one who died for your sins, Jesus Christ.” —Pastor Dennis Rokser“The issue is not the sin issue, it's the Son issue. What do you think of Jesus Christ and what He did for you?” —Pastor Dennis Rokser“The issue at salvation isn't repenting of your sins. Now that's not saying that you don't have to know you're a sinner. Otherwise why would you need to be saved? But it's changing your mind about the Savior who died for your sins, so as to trust in His finished work alone.” —Pastor Dennis Rokser“Before I was saved... I had faith in Jesus Christ and in my works, and the rituals of the church. And I thought I was a Christian because I got baptized as a baby. And when I got saved and understood it was finished, I put my faith in Jesus Christ 'solamente' (Spanish: meaning 'only') and then I knew I was saved. You see, as long as I was still working, it wasn't grace. As long as I was still trying to contribute, it wasn't finished. As long as I was still part of the equation, it wasn't GOOD NEWS. It wasn't until I trusted in Christ alone that I was saved, by the grace of God. And this is how everyone is saved. This is what the Gospel message is all about.” —Pastor Dennis Rokser
Wise men still seek Him . . .