Evangelical shorthand for the gospel is to “ask Jesus into your heart,” or “accept Jesus as Lord and Savior,” or “give your heart to Jesus.” [pg.7]
“Praying the sinner’s prayer” has become something like a Protestant ritual we have people go through to gain entry into heaven. [pg.9]
I have begun to wonder if both problems, needless doubting and false assurance, are exacerbated by the clichéd ways in which we (as evangelicals) speak about the gospel. [pg.7]
Placing an overemphasis on phrases like “ask Jesus into your heart” gives assurance to some who shouldn’t have it and keeps it from some who should. [pg.8]
The biblical summation of a saving response toward Christ is “repentance” and “belief” in the gospel. [pg.7]
Just because we’ve prayed that prayer [the sinner’s prayer] doesn’t necessarily mean we have repented and believed. The flip side is also true: just because we haven’t prayed that prayer (or can’t remember praying it) doesn’t mean we haven’t repented and believed. [pg.41]
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Salvation is a posture of repentance and faith toward the finished work of Christ in which you transfer the weight of your hopes of heaven off of your own righteousness and onto the finished work of Jesus Christ. [pg.43]
You might express the beginning of that posture in a prayer. But don’t make the mistake of equating that prayer with the posture. … The prayer is good only insofar as it verbalizes the posture. [pg.8]
Salvation comes not because you prayed a prayer correctly, but because you have leaned the hopes of your soul on the finished word of Christ. [pg.11]
Here’s another way to think about it: if you are seated right now, there was a point in time in which you transferred the weight of your body from your legs to the chair. You may not even remember making that decision, but the fact that you are seated now proves that you did. [pg.43]
The way that you know you made the decision, however, is not by remembering with absolute clarity the moment you made it, but because you are seated now. [pg. 44]
The way to know you made the decision is by the fact you are resting in Christ now. [pg.43]
Assurance is not found by remembering a prayer that you prayed, however, but by continuing in the posture of repentance and faith that you began at your conversion. [pg.109]
The validity of our faith is revealed not by the intensity of our first reaction to it, but by our perseverance in it. [pg.115]
Many people know exactly when that point of decision was for them. … For others, however, … it was more like they came to a point where they realized they believed rather than one in which they decided to believe. [pg.44-45]
The point is not whether we remember making the decision to get into the posture but whether we are in it now. [pg. 45]
Your present posture is more important than a past memory. [pg.42]At the end of the day, knowing the moment of your conversion is not essential. What is essential is to know that you are currently in a posture of repentance and faith. [pg.90]
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Salvation does indeed happen in a moment, and once you are saved you are always saved. The mark, however, of someone who is saved is that they maintain their confession of faith until the end of their lives. Salvation is not a prayer you pray in a one-time ceremony and then move on from; salvation is a posture of repentance and faith that you begin in a moment and maintain for the rest of your life. [pg.5]
~ A compilation of quotes from J.D. Greear‘s Stop Asking Jesus into Your Hear: How to Know for Sure You are Saved (Nashville, TN: B&H Publishing Group, 2013). I recommend that you read the entire book.
Be looking for an upcoming post on how J.D. Greear applies this theology to the area of leading young children to Christ.
2 thoughts on “Faith is a Posture”
Tony Masciarelli, He also says the following which might be helpful: “See your ongoing struggle with sin as God’s invitation to rest humbly in the gospel; to declare again that Christ’s cross is your only hope. In your moment of weakness and doubt, re-believe the gospel. Renew your posture of submission toward Him and rest in the news of His finished work…. And here is the good news: in the unlikely chance that your lack of spiritual progress really was the result of not being born again, the moment you rest in the gospel you will be. In other words, if what you think is ‘renewed’ faith in the gospel turns out to be ‘first’ faith, you will still be saved in the end. Even if you can’t pinpoint the moment your salvation happened in the past, at least you know you are in the present. You are resting in Christ, which is what God wanted from you all along.”
Simplify the entire issue: In every situation, circumstance, doubt, and fear, trust in Christ.
[…] light of J.D. Greear’s helpful description of Faith as a Posture (see this previous post), he says the following about leading young children to […]
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