"So is it by faith alone or faith plus turning from sin?"
Thank you for your questions and encouraging comments! We are glad that you wrote us. Here is what you wrote with our interjections.
"Hi, I’m a bit confused. On your statement of faith it says a person is saved by faith alone and then on your salvation page it says we are saved if we forsaken, turned away from sin." Both are required.
"So if I come to Christ in Faith am I saved or do I have to also stop my sinning?" Yes.
"So is it by faith alone or faith plus turning from sin?" Turning from sin is faith in action. It is the proof of your faith and trust in Jesus’ Work on the cross.
"I have always thought repentance happened in the mind...a change of mind to believe in God...at least for salvation...repentance is used in different ways not regarding salvation throughout the bible." Repentance must happen also happen in your heart and will. God wants all of you, not just your mind. (Jesus answered: " 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind'. Luke 10:27, Deut 6:5)
"So this is what confuses me...faith alone or faith in addition to something... If you can answer let me know." We hope the notes below are helpful.
We clarify the confusion of this important matter below. We will break it down and glue it all together in context.
The bottom line is that we receive God’s free gift of salvation in order to be free from sin and the curse of death and hell. When we accept Jesus’ atonement on the cross for our own sins, personally, then we want to remain in Jesus so that we will not fall back under God’ wrath and condemnation. We want to stay in God’s friendship. The writing below explains all this. We hope that this is helpful. Please contact us with any other questions which you may have. We are honored to serve you!!
What is faith? Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. Hebrews 11:1
How do we get faith? So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God. Romans 10:17
What is faith used for? Justifying us before God. Having us being seen just, by Jesus Christ's atonement blood sacrifice for each of our own personal sins. "Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: By Whom also we have access by faith into this grace where in we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. Romans 5:1,2"
What is grace? Unmerited favor, a good thing given to us that we do not deserve. Grace is a gift given by God for individuals. "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. Ephesians 2:8,9 "
Faith gives us access into grace: "our Lord Jesus Christ, 2 through Whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. Romans 5"
When grace and faith are mixed together, then salvation from hell and personal justification before The Righteous Judge, the Lord God Almighty, occurs. "Being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in His blood, to declare His righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, though the forbearance of God. Romans 3:24,25" "1Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, 2 through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. Romans 5"
NOW to clarify being saved and works, we need to understand the root reasons. What is : The purpose for salvation? The purpose for justification? To get out of hell, to have our sins removed from us, to be considered not guilty, to be free from condemnation, to be facing God almighty on His terms. To have peace with the Holy God, to be under God Almighty's protection, to be God's friend, child, and servant.
God's Word on it:
But I will show you Whom you should fear: Fear Him who, after the killing of the body, has power to throw you into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear Him. Luke 12:5
Romans 5:10 For if, when we were God's enemies, we were reconciled to Him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through His life! Romans 1: 28Furthermore, since they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, He gave them over to a depraved mind, to do what ought not to be done. 29They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, 30slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; 31they are senseless, faithless, heartless, ruthless. 32Although they know God's righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them.
Psalm 7:8 Let the LORD judge the peoples. Judge me, O LORD, according to my righteousness, according to my integrity, O Most High. Psalm 7:11 God is a righteous judge, a God who expresses his wrath every day. Psalm 9:8 He will judge the world in righteousness; he will govern the peoples with justice. Psalm 50:4 He summons the heavens above, and the earth, that he may judge his people. Psalm 50:6 And the heavens proclaim his righteousness, for God himself is judge. Psalm 51:4 Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight, so that you are proved right when you speak and justified when you judge. Hebrews 9:27 Just as man is destined to die once, and after that to face judgment,
Romans 3:25 God presented Him as a sacrifice of atonement, through faith in His blood. He did this to demonstrate His justice, because in His forbearance He had left the sins committed beforehand unpunished— 26 He did it to demonstrate His justice at the present time, so as to be just and the One Who justifies those who have faith in Jesus. 1 John 2:2 He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world. Hebrews 2:17 For this reason He had to be made like His brothers in every way, in order that He might become a merciful and faithful high priest in service to God, and that He might make atonement for the sins of the people. 1 John 4:10 This is love: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.
Psalm 103:12 as far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us. Ezekiel 11:19 I will give them an undivided heart and put a new spirit in them; I will remove from them their heart of stone and give them a heart of flesh. Isaiah 1:18 "Come now, let us reason together," says the LORD. "Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool."
Psalm 34:22 The LORD redeems His servants; no one will be condemned who takes refuge in Him. John 3:17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him. John 3:18 Whoever believes in Him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the Name of God's one and only Son. John 5:24 "I tell you the truth, whoever hears My word and believes Him Who sent Me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life. Romans 8:1,2 Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death.
John 14:27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. John 16:33
"I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world."
God's protection, Psalm 61. Psalm 69:29 I am in pain and distress; may your salvation, O God, protect me. John 15:15 I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master's business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. Colossians 3: 23 Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, 24 since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.
John 1:12 Yet to all who received Him, to those who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God— 13 children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband's will, but born of God. John 3:3,5,6 In reply Jesus declared, "I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again." Jesus answered, "I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit. Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit.
Surely God is my salvation; I will trust and not be afraid. The LORD, the LORD, is my strength and my song; He has become my salvation." Isaiah 12:2
So, the purpose is to not be under the wrath of the Almighty God. (Romans 1:18,19) Now if this is the reason, then when a person runs to Jesus Christ for protection, they know full well that Jesus Christ Himself died, taking the punishment that the individual deserved for all of their wrongdoing, or sins. When a person does this with all of their mind, heart, soul and strength, leaning their full weight on Jesus' cross, then God makes them a new creature. (Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! 2 Corinthians 5:17)
Out of gratitude the person should live for the Lord Jesus Christ. God commands the new person to spread the Gospel, not keep on sinning, abide in God's Word (the Bible), bear frit in keeping with repentance, and live out their personal faith and relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ daily with their mind, words, attitudes, actions and heart.
Then Jesus came to them and said, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in[a] the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age." Matt 28:18-20
Hebrews 10:26,27 If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God. 1 John 3:6 No one who lives in Him keeps on sinning. No one who continues to sin has either seen Him or known Him. 1 John 5:18 We know that anyone born of God does not continue to sin; the One Who was born of God keeps him safe, and the evil one cannot harm him.
John 11:25,36 Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in Me will never die." Jn 14: 23 Jesus answered and said to him, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him. 24 He who does not love Me does not keep My words; and the word which you hear is not Mine but the Father’s who sent Me. John 15: 9"As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. 10If you obey my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have obeyed my Father's commands and remain in his love. 11I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete. 12My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. 13Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. 14You are my friends if you do what I command. & 26"When the Counselor comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who goes out from the Father, he will testify about me. 27And you also must testify, for you have been with me from the beginning. John 17: 17 Sanctify them by the truth; Your Word is truth. 18As you sent Me into the world, I have sent them into the world. 19For them I sanctify myself, that they too may be truly sanctified.
If we act as if nothing happened when we prayed for God to do a change in your heart and lives, if we do not change according to the new facts of God's Word's Promise in our life, then we are ignoring it, not acting out of faith, and not producing fruit as proof of our faith. It is like going through with a marriage to someone, and leaving them at the altar after the ceremony is completed, and continuing with our single lifestyle.
James 2 clarifies this: 14What good is it, my brothers, if a man claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save him? 15Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. 16If one of you says to him, "Go, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed," but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it? 17In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.
18But someone will say, "You have faith; I have deeds."
Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by what I do. 19You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder. 20You foolish man, do you want evidence that faith without deeds is useless ? 21Was not our ancestor Abraham considered righteous for what he did when he offered his son Isaac on the altar? 22You see that his faith and his actions were working together, and his faith was made complete by what he did. 23And the scripture was fulfilled that says, "Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness,"[e] and he was called God's friend. 24You see that a person is justified by what he does and not by faith alone. 25In the same way, was not even Rahab the prostitute considered righteous for what she did when she gave lodging to the spies and sent them off in a different direction? 26As the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without deeds is dead.
God then says, - 1Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual act of worship. 2Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. 3For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you. Romans 12
1As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, 2in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. 3All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our sinful nature[a] and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature objects of wrath. 4But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. 6And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, 7in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. 8For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9not by works, so that no one can boast. 10For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. Ephesians 2
12I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has given me strength, that he considered me faithful, appointing me to his service. 13Even though I was once a blasphemer and a persecutor and a violent man, I was shown mercy because I acted in ignorance and unbelief. 14The grace of our Lord was poured out on me abundantly, along with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. 1 Tim 1
Jesus Christ alone receives the honor, glory and praise for His handiwork, who is us as well.
“For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. Ephesians 2:10”
Grace and peace to you from Him who is, and who was, and who is to come, and from the seven spirits before his throne, 5and from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth.
To Him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by His blood, 6and has made us to be a kingdom and priests to serve His God and Father—to Him be glory and power for ever and ever! Amen. 7Look, He is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see Him, even those who pierced Him; and all the peoples of the earth will mourn because of Him. So shall it be! Amen. 8"I am the Alpha and the Omega," says the Lord God, "Who is, and Who was, and Who is to come, the Almighty." Revelation 1
For those who do not move with God’s change, God warns, “20Timothy, guard what has been entrusted to your care. Turn away from godless chatter and the opposing ideas of what is falsely called knowledge, 21which some have professed and in so doing have wandered from the faith. 1Tim 6 “ and “You who are trying to be justified by law have been alienated from Christ; you have fallen away from grace. Galatians 5:4 Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster. For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. Galatians 3:24-26
Matthew 3:8 Produce fruit in keeping with repentance.
Luke 3:8 Produce fruit in keeping with repentance. And do not begin to say to yourselves, 'We have Abraham as our father.' For I tell you that out of these stones God can raise up children for Abraham.
John 15:4 Remain in Me, and I will remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in Me. John 15:5 "I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. Matthew 9:38 Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field." Luke 10:2 He told them, "The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field. 11 For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men. 12 It teaches us to say "No" to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age, 13 while we wait for the blessed hope—the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, 14 who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good. Titus 2
For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ. 1 Thessalonians 5:9
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