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Wednesday
May182011

Theological Term of the Week

lordship salvation
The doctrinal stance that saving faith includes not only trust in Christ as Savior but also repentance (defined as a change of heart that results in turning from sin) and commitment to Christ as Lord, and that saving faith always produces a changed life.

  • From scripture: 

    [I]f you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.10 For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. (Romans 10:9-10 ESV).

    Repent therefore, and turn again, that your sins may be blotted out…. (Acts 3:19 ESV)

    Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation.The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. (2 Corinthians 5:17 ESV)

  • From The Westminster Shorter Catechism:

    Q. 85. What doth God require of us that we may escape his wrath and curse due to us for sin?
    A. To escape the wrath and curse of God due to us for sin, God requireth of us faith in Jesus Christ, repentance unto life, with the diligent use of all the outward means whereby Christ communicateth to us the benefits of redemption.

    Q. 86. What is faith in Jesus Christ?
    A. Faith in Jesus Christ is a saving grace, whereby we receive and rest upon him alone for salvation, as he is offered to us in the gospel.

    Q. 87. What is repentance unto life?
    A. Repentance unto life is a saving grace, whereby a sinner, out of a true sense of his sin, and apprehension of the mercy of God in Christ, doth, with grief and hatred of his sin, turn from it unto God, with full purpose of, and endeavor after, new obedience.

  • From Systematic Theology by Wayne Grudem: 

    When we realize the genuine saving faith must be accompanied by genuine repentance for sin, it helps us to understand why some preaching of the gospel has such inadequate results today. If there is no mention of the need for repentance, sometimes the gospel message becomes only, “Believe in Jesus Christ and be saved” without any mention of repentance at all. But this watered-down version of the gospel does not ask for a wholehearted commitment to Christ—commitment to Christ, if genuine, must include a commitment to turn from sin. Preaching the need for faith without repentance is preaching only half of the gospel.  It will result in many people being deceived, thinking that they have heard the Christian gospel and tried it, but nothing has happened. They might even say something like, “I accepted Christ as Savior over and over again and it never worked.” Yet they never really did receive Christ as their Savior, for he comes to us in his majesty and invites us to receive him as he is—the one who deserves to be, and demands to be, absolute Lord of our lives as well.

Learn more:

  1. Grace Community Church: An Introduction to Lordship Salvation
  2. William Webster: Lordship Salvation: Biblical or Heretical?
  3. Gary Gilley: Lordship Salvation
  4. Earnest Reisenger: The Lordship Controversy and Repentance
  5. Phil Johnson: The Lordship Salvation Controversy (mp3)
  6. James White: Lordship Salvation (video)

Related terms:

Do you have a theological term you’d like to see featured here as a Theological Term of the Week? If you email it to me, I’ll seriously consider using it, giving you credit for the suggestion and linking back to your blog when I do.

Clicking on the Theological Term graphic at the top of this post will take you to a list of all the previous theological terms in alphabetical order.

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