Summary: The question for everyone, is “Are you wheat or are you a tare?”
OBJECTIVE: To show that there are two destructive doctrines floating around the Christian church today: Sinless perfection and sinful conversion
INTRODUCTION: Last week we discussed the doctrine of ‘sinless perfection’ and we learned that while we are made spiritually perfect by Christ’s sacrifice, no one will be made perfectly sinless until we are in glory.
This week we are tackling an even more dangerous doctrine within the evangelic church today; the doctrine of ‘sinful conversion’.
“Sinner’s prayer” Many people feel like ‘saying the sinner’s prayer’ is all that is involved with the Christian conversion. Now I, as most of you know, am a believer in praying the sinner’s prayer at the conclusion of every service. But I must tell you that saying a prayer and making a statement, and even being baptized have no power for conversion without the heart change that should accompany salvation.
QUOTES CONCERNING FALSE CONVERSION IN THE CHURCH:
“It is my opinion that tens of thousands of people, if not millions, have been brought into some kind of religious experience by accepting Christ and they have not been saved” – A.W. Tozer
“There are probably more unsaved church people than we could begin to imagine” – Gary Labro
“The vast majority of people who are members of churches in America today are not Christians. I say that without the slightest fear of contradiction. I base it on empirical evidence of 24 years of examining thousands of people” – Dr. D. James Kennedy
“Satan’s job is to make the saved feel unsaved and the unsaved feel saved” – anonymous
A STAGGERING STATISTIC
In November 1970 a number of churches combined for a convention in Fort Worth Texas and secured 30,000 ‘decisions. Six months later, the follow up committee could find only 30 still continuing in their faith. [The way of the Master by Ray Comfort]
Charles Hackett, the division of home missions national director for the assemblies of God in the U.S. said, “A soul at the altar does not generate much excitement in some circles, because we realize approximately 95 out of every hundred will not become integrated into the church. In fact most of them will not return for a second visit.
I believe that God is, as Malachi said, “Weary” over His Church. Why? Because it has been filled with people who have denied His righteousness and come to Him with hearts that have no intention of change.
***In short – the church is full of false converts.
I. A false convert will try to justify sin instead of repenting of it
a. This person chooses not to submit to God, but rather argue against His revealed Word
b. This happens most in the area of moral sin:
i. “Pre-marital sex”
1. Most people, including those within the church, see nothing wrong with fornication
2. 1 Corinthians 6:18 “Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body.”
3. But many church people say, “well, I know the Bible says it’s wrong, but I don’t think it’s really that bad”