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1. The gospel according to Jesus requires faithful obedience to get eternal life. (Joh 8:51 “keeps” = is faithful)

 

2. James got his gospel from his brother (Jesus) and Jesus got his gospel from the OT which means God’s salvation has not changed (IOW: it has always required faithful obedience). (Deu 28:1-2 w/Jam 2:24)

 

3. If as the Evangelicals say, the OT saints were also saved by faith alone (and not their obedience)[1], then God is no better than Hitler since most of Jews either didn’t get the memo and were ruthlessly killed by Him or tried the faith alone route and were still ruthlessly killed by Him. (Jer 7:1-16, 11:1-11, 13:12-14, 14:11-12, 13-14 “assured peace” [the message: have faith and you wb delivered], 15:1, 16:1-5 w/10-11, 19:9, 23:14-17, 21-22 [Eze 13:22], 25:4-11, 44:27)

 

4. Spotting false prophets, teachers and Christians has always been easy: they are those who leave the condition of faithful obedience out of their gospel and practice. (Deu 29:18-20; Mat 7:15-20 w/21-23; 2Pe 2:1; Jud 1:3-4; Eph 5:5-10; 1Jo 3:7-10)

 

5. The fact that we must repent and will be judged according to our works makes no sense unless faithful obedience is a condition of our salvation. (Mar 1:15; Luk 3:8-14; 2Co 7:10a; Rev 20:11-15; 2Co 5:9-10; Rom 2:6-11)

 

6. Jesus was sinfully cruel to someone He loved if salvation does not require faithful obedience. (Mat 19:16-22 “keep” = Be faithful to; Mar 10:21)

 

7. People don’t need to become Christians (receive propitiation) or possess the Holy Spirit (regeneration/new birth) to produce faithful obedience since God says we can do it without such help from above. (Deu 30:11-14 “who will ascend to heaven…[or] will go over the sea…for us and bring it to us that we may hear it and do it” = We do not need Spiritual help or deliverance to do it; propitiation necessary to be saved but not to faithfully obey God; See also Ecc 7:29 “upright” = Morally capable; e.g., 2Ki 10:3 “fittest” [same word as Ecc 7:29 translated “upright”)

 

8. If regeneration were necessary to faithful obedience then God would be unjust in His condemnation of the wicked (i.e., obligation requires ability). (Eze 18:1-9 “the fathers have eaten sour grapes and children’s teeth are set on edge” = We have no control over/cannot change our destiny – or stop the behavior that leads to our damnation)

 

9. God would also be unjust if faithful obedience were not quantifiable or knowable. (Again Deu 30:11-14 = We do not need Spiritual help or deliverance to “hear it” – i.e. to know it or know that you are doing it; 2Ti 4:7-8; Phi 3:6)

 

10. Evidence of conviction (or grief) over sin does not confirm that you possess faithful obedience. (Joh 16:8; 2Co 7:10b; e.g., Judas – Mat 27:1-5)

 

11. Evidence of affection, approval, or believe in Jesus does not confirm that you possess faithful obedience. (Joh 2:23-25, 6:60 w/66; Luk 14:25-35; Mat 13:20-22)

 

12. Your desire to be faithful, your membership in a biblical church or the fact that you have examples of obedience or serving Christ in your life also does not confirm that you possess faithful obedience. (Luk 12:34; Mat 7:21-23; Eze 18:26; Jer 7:1-15)

 

13. Committing a capital crime does not mean you will never be considered faithfully obedient by God. (e.g., 1Ki 14:8; 1Ti 1:12-13)

 

14. For the Christian to possess faithful obedience (and receive final salvation/get to heaven – Rom 13:11; 1Pe 1:3-5), they must (after initial salvation/baptism) remain obedient to everything they know God expects from them – especially during testing/trials, never knowingly continuing in any sin (or being unrepentant) to the point of losing their possibility of forgiveness. (Heb 10:26 “receiving the knowledge of the truth” = The truth established by God’s Word that we commit to trust and follow the moment we receive Christ/get baptized; Luk 9:62; 1Jo 1:9, 3:7-10; Eze 18:24 = The majority view [“you were obedient the majority of your Christian life”] is not accurate; Deu 8:1-2 and 1Pe 1:6 = Obedience during trials/testing is especially important; In this respect consider also Mat 18:7-9)

[1] “God has always required that his people exercise faith, even when that faith lacked the clear connections to Jesus that we can see today.

Old Testament believers were saved by grace through faith, by the grace of God whom they trusted according to His own promises. In that broad sense, there really is no difference between the way the Old Testament saints were saved and the way New Testament saints are saved.” – D.A. Carson (Gospel Coalition)

“Since Adam rebelled at the beginning, the Creator instituted only one way for a person to be declared righteous and that is through repentant trust in the coming Victor… Anyone, who trusted in the promise of the coming Son, now “born of a woman, born under law,” was justified, delivered from both the curse and obligation of the broken divine law… Overall, the only way anyone has been declared righteous from the Fall until the present is through trust in the substitutionary atonement of our Victor-King. In the past, people looked forward to him; now we look back to his finished work.” – Mark R. Kreitzer (Grand Canyon University)