Summary: Many Bible verses including the illustration of the Thief On The Cross teach that salvation is by faith alone in Jesus Christ alone.
The Gospel - Faith Alone In Christ Alone
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Jesus Himself tells us in John 8:31-32:
31 "... If you abide in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine;
32 and you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. " NAS
In John 15:7, He also tells us:
7 "If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it shall be done for you. NAS
Let’s take a moment to quietly confess our sins to God, so that we are in fellowship with Him and led by the Holy Spirit when we study God’s word. 1 John 1:9 promises us, that if we name our known sins to God, He always forgives us and cleanses us from all unrighteousness, even from the unknown sins we forgot or didn’t even realize we committed. Let’s pray.
Thank you, Father, for always restoring your children when we admit our sins to you. May your Holy Spirit teach us your word as we study it now. We ask these things in Jesus Name. Amen
FAITH ALONE IN CHRIST ALONE! (Ephesians 2:8-9)
Today I’m going to discuss what the Bible teaches about the true gospel, what God’s Word tells us concerning how to be saved. Despite what the world and even many churches say, salvation is by faith alone in Christ alone.
We see the Bible teaching faith alone in such verses as Acts 16:30-31. The Philippian jailer asks Paul and Silas, "What must I do to be saved?", and they respond simply, "Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you shall be saved...." (NAS). These verses are just one place where the Bible teaches faith alone for salvation.
The Bible also teaches that such faith must be in Christ alone. For instance, Jesus Himself says in John 14:6, "I am the [only] way, and the [only] truth, and the [only] life; no one comes to the Father but through Me." (NAS) While the specific word "only" doesn’t appear in the original New Testament manuscript, the meaning is there in the grammar of the Koine Greek for the word "the", meaning "the one and only". Jesus tells us that He is the "one and only" way, truth, and life. In addition, Jesus then makes His meaning even clearer when he says, "no one comes to the Father but through Me". There is no other way to get to heaven except through Christ alone.
Faith alone in Christ alone? There are many people who consider themselves to be Christians, yet they often call this easy believism. I recently read a publication on the Internet that used those very words, easy believism, to describe faith alone in Christ alone. My response to that is...you bet it is!!!
Salvation is easy for us, because God did all of the work. Salvation wasn’t easy for Jesus Christ, because God put the sins of the world on Jesus and judged Him in our place. Since Jesus did all of the work and paid the price of our sins in full, all we have to do is believe. There is nothing we can add to salvation to pay even a tiny part of it.
Faith alone in Christ alone is the true Biblical gospel. It’s what separates real Christianity from being just another religion. All religions believe that you can earn salvation yourselves by following certain rules, by performing good works and avoiding certain sins.
That’s not what the Bible teaches. God’s word throughout the Old and New Testament shows that God deals with His people by grace. Grace is blessing from God that we don’t earn or deserve, but that we receive through believing what the Lord tells us, by exercising faith.
As human beings, we have a really hard time understanding and believing the idea of grace. We receive a wage for the work we perform at our jobs. We get a prize if we compete with others and we excel over them. We get an award in recognition of our long years of service. However, with grace, we receive a valuable gift for doing absolutely nothing.
I’d first like to give you six principles from the Bible that teach faith alone in Christ alone for salvation. These can be found on the first page of the outline that I handed out:
1. Salvation is by grace. This means that it results from unmerited favor, that it is not earned or deserved in any way.
2. Salvation is accessed by faith, by believing in Jesus Christ’s sacrificial death on the cross for our sins. God the Father poured the sins of the whole world on to His Son, Jesus Christ, and punished Jesus for what we have done.