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"Seek ye the Lord while He may be found, call ye upon him while He is near: Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the Lord, and He will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon." (Isaiah 55:6-7)

 

Oct 5, 2016

Why do you see people "get saved" over and over and over again only to see them never change? If their is any true power in Christianity, the Bible, or the gospel of Jesus Christ: why do people "get saved" and they never outwardly change? If you have ever asked this question, listen to this brief answer.

Here are the notes for this episode:

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Why do people get "saved" multiple times and nothing changes?

  1. Intro
    1. The question is, “If there is really truth to the claims of Christianity, the Bible, and the gospel of Jesus Christ, then why do people get “saved” multiple times and nothing changes?”
    2. That’s a good question and a common one too. The implication of whatever the truth is behind it is serious any way it goes. Let me relate to you something that happened to my wife. She was helping with a children’s ministry at a certain church we used to attend. One day a teenager that rode our bus to church on Sundays came and asked her, “how many times can you get saved…can you max it out or something?” My wife was horrified at the question. Not because it was asked, but because that it even came to the young girl’s mind. What in the world was the young girl taught about salvation? But this is the common thing to come to when you look at the average church today.
    3. I’m going to first answer logically and then scripturally.
  2. Logical Reasoning
    1. As I always like to do, let’s define some terms:
      1. “Christian” means “follower of Christ”, and “follow” means “to walk after, practice, or act in accordance to, to obey” that which is being followed. So, to be a Christian is to walk after, practice, or act in accordance to Jesus Christ.
      2. “Repent” means “to turn from, to have a change of mind”.
    2. The gospel of Jesus Christ is the command to repent of your sins and put your faith in Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of past sins and to be reconciled to God. Jesus Christ is able to be our Savior because of His death, burial, and resurrection. For a detailed lesson on “What is the Gospel” listen to our first episode which has that title.
    3. Since the Bible makes clear that the gospel involves repenting of your sins in order to become a Christian, it shows us the problem by the definition of the very words used. To repent a person must turn from sin. That means that if they haven’t turned from sin that they haven’t yet repented. They haven’t become Christians yet. The word Christian also implies a change itself. A Christian is a follower of Christ. Jesus Christ was sinless and taught his disciples, which are Christians, to put away sin. So, if someone hasn’t put away sin they haven’t yet become a Christian by the very definition of the word.
    4. They are either lying or deceived by logical reasoning.
  3. Scripturally
    1. The Bible teaches that a Christian is one who is characterized by a difference in how they live from the sinful practices of those who are not Christians:
      1. “And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.” (Mat 1:21)
      2. “Unto you first God, having raised up his Son Jesus, sent him to bless you, in turning away every one of you from his iniquities.” (Act 3:26)
      3. “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.” (Rom. 8:14)
      4. “In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil: whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God, neither he that loveth not his brother.” (1 Jn. 3:10)
  4. The Real Problem
    1. The real question is not, “Why do so many get “saved” and nothing changes?” The real question is, “Why do so many people think they got saved when nothing changed?”
    2. The answer logically comes as follows: the bible teaches that Jesus saves people from their sins, the bible says that the gospel is how we come to know Jesus, therefore people must be hearing a different gospel than the one which results in biblical change of character and life.
    3. People are not being told the true gospel. If they had, and they received it, then the bible says that they would’ve changed.
    4. What most people are told is that if they admit they’re a sinner and ask Jesus into their heart then He will fix all their problems and save them. They are told that if they pray a prayer they are saved. They are told that God loves them and has a wonderful plan for their life. That’s not the gospel! Nowhere in the Bible are such reasons given for men to come to Christ.
    5. The gospel that the Bible teaches says that man has broken God’s law. As a result he is a criminal in the sight of God. God is a righteous King, and judgment against all disobedience (which is sin) is the result. Men are condemned justly by a righteous God because their deeds are evil (John 3:19). But God is rich in mercy and doesn’t want men to be condemned to Hell, God’s eternal prison. He has made a way for all men to receive pardon and life through the payment of Jesus Christ in their place. Jesus Christ died on the cross to be a sacrifice for sin. He paid the penalty for men’s sin so that if they would repent of sin and turn to God in faith they would be saved from the condemnation of their past disobedience. Through Jesus Christ man is reconciled to God the Father, filled with the Holy Spirit, and enabled to walk obedient to God’s commands. That is the change that is the result of salvation.
  5. The Fruits
    1. Jesus Christ said, “Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.” (Mat. 7:21-23)
      1. The outward proof that a person is a child of God is that they obey God by doing His will.
    2. Jesus also used an illustration of this truth again when he said, “The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field: But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way. But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also.” (Mat. 13:24-26) A few verses later He explained what He meant, “He answered and said unto them, He that soweth the good seed is the Son of man; The field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the children of the wicked one;” (Mat. 13:37-38)
      1. Jesus said that the tares were shown to not be the wheat when the wheat brought forth fruit. The tares He said are the children of the wicked one, the lost. This shows from Jesus Christ’s own words that the quality that outwardly proves someone to be a child of God, a Christian, in this world is that they bring forth fruits, or outward deeds that show their true change. If they don’t bring forth the appropriate outward deeds they aren’t children of God.
    3.  
  6. Examine Yourself
    1. Many today think they are Christians that aren’t. The Apostles themselves taught that many would be deceived. If you aren’t living in agreement with the Word of God, if it doesn’t direct the very thoughts and intents of your heart: then you are not a Christian. Yes, people will grow over time: but there WILL be an outward change of character in a Christian.