|There are some today who seem to be teaching a view that borders on scriptural error. They argue that if one does not openly articulate that they have eternal life in Christ when they confess Him as their Savior then they may not be saved. To make the point they say that the Gospel of John is the only evangelistic book in the NT. While that could be disputed they seem to go further and come close to heresy. One of these advocates writes:|
"The vast majority of people in Christianity [Sam points out], have never believed that they are eternally secure by faith in Christ. Thus, if the assurance view is correct, then most people in Christianity are lost."
This advocate also says "If we look at the Gospel of John, the eternality of the gift is always stressed." Again, he writes: "I do not believe that there is a single evangelistic verse that lacks a statement about the eternality of the gift [of salvation]."
Hoping that I am wrong this person argues that one must also say "I believe that Christ is giving me eternal life." And if he does not verbalize that, then he is not saved! The point he is making is about the words "eternal life."
It is of course absolutely true that the one who believes in Christ receives eternal life because of His work on the cross. But to say that every verse in the NT, and certainly in the Gospel of John, mentions eternal life when it speaks about faith in Christ, is absolutely in error!
Throughout the rest of the NT one cannot find every verse speaking about faith in Jesus mentioning "eternal life." Nor does the Bible say "You must say openly that your faith causes you to have eternal life"! Again, we know that it is true, that we do receive eternal life, and what a blessing that this is the case. But to argue that one is not saved if he does not mention those two words, is wrong!
For sixty years I have been witnessing to the lost about accepting Christ as Savior. And I have discovered that most people coming to Him as Savior are not thoroughly knowledgeable in all the doctrines about salvation. People have to learn what they have received in Christ. They do not know it all when they proclaim Him as their personal Savior. I would dare say that most people who witness to the lost mention the fact that they are receiving eternal life in Christ. But to so mention is not said to be required for that person to be saved. He will quickly learn from the sharing of a saved friend that indeed he is given "eternal life."
Many verses mention the fact that the saved receive eternal life but many passages do not. Here is a sample of those that do not:
My biggest question is, why do we continually have error raise its ugly head in the community of believers? Someone always seems to come along and bring confusion to the saints in Christ! It just seems impossible to go along and fly the plane straight and level! When you hear something that seems so contradictory to the truth, check it out an d do not be quick to embrace what "sounds so wrong." The Bible is our authority not what someone has said in order to counter its plain and simple truth. –Dr. Mal Couch (8/10)