Q. This is the end of a sermon given by my preacher.
The Bible doesn’t say that “whosoever believeth in the inerrancy of Scripture will not perish but have everlasting life”; it doesn’t say that whosoever believeth in the divinity of Jesus, his virgin birth, his bodily resurrection, his second coming; it doesn’t say that whosoever believeth in the doctrine of substitutionary atonement will not perish; it says that whosoever believeth in him–in Jesus–will not perish but have everlasting life (John 3:16).
I was shocked. This seems very wrong to me and the way of the new age movement. I need some guidance.
A. Romans 10:9 clearly says, “If you confess with your mouth ‘Jesus is Lord’ and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.”
When we confess that Jesus is Lord, it means we believe that He’s the one sent by God to die for our sins. Believing that God raised Him from the dead is necessary for salvation because When He went to the cross, Jesus took all the sins of our life upon Himself to make us righteous before God. (2 Cor. 5:21) After His resurrection He went to sit at God’s right hand. God cannot be in the presence of sin, so if any of our sins were left unpaid, He couldn’t be in the presence of God. And that means we couldn’t be sure that he really saved us completely. Since there’s no other way to pay for our sins, we’d still be lost. To put it simply, His resurrection is proof that God considered His death sufficient to pay for all of our sins in full, qualifying us for resurrection as well. Belief in the resurrection is not optional. Unless we believe that Jesus was resurrected, we can’t believe that we will be.
The same case can be made for the divinity of Jesus, the virgin birth, the substitutionary atonement, and so on. According to God’s Law, they are essential to our assurance of salvation. They’re what make John 3:16 work. People who say otherwise simply haven’t done their theological homework.
Lot’s of people love Jesus because they see Him as a great teacher, or a kind and gentle man, or a good role model. These are all legitimate responses to His life. But until we admit that we’re sinners in need of a Savior and believe that Jesus is both willing and able to save us if we ask Him, then all the love we have for Him as a man will not help us at all.