“Living In A Fishbowl?”

Posted: August 30, 2017 in Bible Study, Christian Life, Dispensations, Gospel, Lordship Salvation, Salvation, Security

It used to be, and may still be, that preacher’s kids who live in a parsonage, feel like they are living in a fishbowl where everyone can see and hear virtually everything they do and say. Some of them resent this and turn away from their parent’s faith and the church.

Reality T.V. However, with today’s reality shows, there are many “celebrities” who subject themselves to the scrutiny of others and they lack personal privacy. Some of them thrive on the attention of their fans and go to extreme measures to keep them. It seems like the more shocking they are, the more they are admired by their depraved fans (See Romans 1:18-32). Other people don’t want to be in the limelight and are very private about what they do in the dark (Psalm 10:11; John 3:19).

Biography. Just suppose that God were still in the business of writing people’s biographies today. Would you like for Him to reveal to an author the dark side of your life as He did in many stories that are found in the Scriptures? Think about the awful things that are recorded about some of the patriarchs. (Examples: Abraham’s lying about his wife Sarah. Isaac’s doing the same thing. Jacob’s deceiving his brother Esau and stealing his birthright. Jacob’s sons selling their brother Joseph to the Midianites. et al.) Some people think that parts of the Bible should be “X” or “R” rated. But everything found in the Bible is accurate in what it says. Much of it serves as negative examples for us not to follow lest we suffer the same kind of consequences in our lives (1 Corinthians 10:6, 11).

Omniscient. While some people think that the IRS, NSA, Facebook and other organizations may have a lot of files and information on almost everyone, their knowledge is still limited. But there is Someone who knows everything about us, including our motivations for doing and saying what we do and say (Isaiah 46:10; John 2:22, 23; Revelation 2:2, 9, 13, 19; 3:1, 8, 15; 1 Corinthians 4:5). Imagine that. This may be comforting to those who feel like they have been unjustly treated, and who would like for God to take righteous vengeance on their behalf (Romans 12:19; Revelation 6:10), but it can also be very disconcerting and fearful to those who think that no one knows what they do in the dark (Psalm 10:11; John 3:19; Hebrews 10:30, 31).

Accountable. One day everyone of us will give an account of everything we’ve done and said (Matthew 12:36; Romans 14:12). Our rewards in heaven (1 Corinthians 3:11-15) or our degree of suffering in the lake of fire will be determined when judgment day comes (Revelation 20:11-15). By the way, there isn’t just one judgment at the end of time when we all stand before the omniscient and righteous Judge Jesus (John 5:22; 2 Timothy 4:8) for Him to determine if we get to enter heaven or if we end up in the lake of fire with the devil and his angels/demons.

Sin. There is only one sin that keeps someone out of heaven. It’s the sin of unbelief in the Christ of the Scriptures who died for our sins…and rose again bodily on the third day. Without the righteousness of Christ put to our account (Romans 4:3-8), we can’t enter heaven. Those who try to get in by their good works, will miss it completely. They will be judged and end up in hell with the devil and his angels/demons (John 16:8-11; See Ephesians 2:8, 9; Titus 3:5; Matthew 25:41, 46).

Identity. Don’t be deceived by the false Christs of the cults (Matthew 24:5; 2 Corinthians 11:4, 13-15). The Christ of the Scriptures shares an absolute equality with God the Father and God the Holy Spirit (John 1:1-18; 10:30; Philippians 2:5-11; Colossians 2:9). God the Son, who is eternal, added to His deity a true human nature and a real body (Philippians 2:5-9; Hebrews 10:5). He was born of the virgin, Mary (Isaiah 7:14; Matthew 1:23). He lived a sinless life (Hebrews 4:15). He volunteered to die as a substitute for all our sins on a cross (Hebrews 10:9; John 10:15-18). He was buried in a tomb for three days and nights (Matthew 12:40). Then He rose again bodily on the third day and made Himself visible to over 500 witnesses (1 Corinthians 15:3-8; Luke 24:33-43; 2 John 1:7) over a 40 period of time before He ascended back to heaven with a promise to return someday (Acts 1:3-11; John14:1-3).

Believe. Many people in some parts of the world know little or nothing about the Christ of the Scriptures. Some people know and believe the facts about Christ and the Gospel. But many of them aren’t saved. They haven’t transferred their faith over to the Lord Jesus Christ alone and been saved. They “believe in vain” when they change the Gospel message or add other conditions beside faith (believing) in Christ alone (1 Corinthians 15:2).

Formula. The correct formula for salvation: Grace + Faith = Salvation + Works.  The Incorrect formula: Grace + Faith + Works = Salvation. Are you making the conditions for spiritual maturity and sanctification the requirements for salvation and justification? God wants Christians who have been saved to be baptized and then present their bodies to Him as a living sacrifice (Matthew 28:19, 20; Romans 12:1, 2; See 1 Peter 3:15). If you’re saved, have you done these things yet? If you want to convince other people (not God who knows your heart) that you are saved, you must do so by displaying good works (James 1:22; 2:18-20).

Lordship Salvation. (1) This heresy involves one’s having to make Christ the Lord and Master of his/her life in exchange for salvation. The Apostle Paul rebuked a demon possessed girl for saying that Jesus was one of many ways of salvation. The Greek language, in which the New Testament was written, should read, “These men are the servants of the Most High God, who proclaim to us “a way” of salvation” (Acts 16:17; See Acts 4:12; John 14:6). The only requirement for salvation is to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ alone through the message of the Gospel. The word “believe” is used about 100 times in John’s Gospel as the only condition for salvation.

False Conditions. By twisting the Scriptures (2 Peter 3:16), some people make faith plus water baptism the condition for salvation. Others make faith plus the confession of all your sins necessary for salvation. (What happens if someone can’t remember them all?)  Still others change repentance to mean turning from sin completely rather than a change of mind. Some men believe and teach that a Christian loses his/her sin nature when he/she gets saved and that there is no such thing as a “carnal Christian.” (See 1 Corinthians 3:1-4; Romans 7:15-25; 1 John 1:8). In his little booklet entitled “The Gospel” Dr. Ron Shea deals with some of these false conditions for salvation. (2)

Security/Assurance. They aren’t the same thing. Do you know the difference between the two? The true believer’s security is a fact (John 10:28, 39; Ephesians 1:13; 4:30; Philippians 1:6). But his/her assurance comes from the written Word of God (1 John 5:13) and the witness of the indwelling Holy Spirit who bears witness with our spirit that belongs to the mind (Ephesians 4:23). The spirit is the only part of the Christian that is saved at the present time (Romans 8:16; See 1 Corinthians 6:17). Do you know when the soul (emotions) and the body of the Christian are saved (1 Peter 1:9; Romans 8:23; 1 John 3:3)?

Help. We’re here to try to help those who are teachable and willing to change (2 Timothy 2:2, 15; 3:16, 17). All Scripture is for us but not all of it is addressed to Christians (Titus 1:9). We encourage you to examine yourself to see if you are really saved God’s way (2 Peter 1:10). Once you know for sure that you are saved (1 John 5:13), share the Clear Gospel with others so they can be saved (Matthew 28:19, 20; Acts 1:8; Romans 1:16).

Communicate. We’d like to hear back from you. Let us know if this article helped you or if you have questions about what you’ve read. To receive future articles as they come out, click on “Follow.” We can be reached through our website: www.kelseypeach.com

1) Lordship Salvation: http://www.middletownbiblechurch.org/salvatio/lordshrq.pdf

(2)The Clear Gospel:  http://www.cleargospel.org/wp-content/uploads/English-Display-Pkg-2014.pdf

Recommended ReadingSo Great Salvation by Dr. Charles Ryrie

http://www.cheapestbookprice.com/prices/9780802478184-so-great-salvation-what-it-means-to-believe-in-jesus-christ

Dispensations Chart: http://kelseypeach.com/Kelsey.8.pdf

Dispensations are the result of a normal, literal, historical, grammatical interpretation of the Scriptures. They are NOT different ways of salvation.

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