Thursday, July 7, 2011

A simple faith is all that's needed for salvation--if the faith has the correct object

And there were also two other, malefactors, led with him to be put to death.
And when they were come to the place, which is called Calvary, there they crucified him, and the malefactors, one on the right hand, and the other on the left...
...And one of the malefactors which were hanged railed on him, saying, If thou be Christ, save thyself and us.
But the other answering rebuked him, saying, Dost not thou fear God, seeing thou art in the same condemnation?
And we indeed justly; for we receive the due reward of our deeds: but this man hath done nothing amiss.
And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom.
And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, Today shalt thou be with me in paradise.
Luke 23:32-33, 39-43

But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him. Hebrews 11:6

Yesterday I attended the funeral of a man whose son has been a good friend and brother in the Lord. The deceased was the son of a pastor and the twin brother of a pastor, and although he didn't pursue the vocation of a pastor, he nevertheless was a good and faithful servant. He didn't have a university degree, just enough education to be qualified for a livelihood as a plumber (at which he was very successful).

This man was described as having a simple faith; he didn't know many passages of Scripture by heart, but he lived out the ones he did know. In thinking about this man and his "simple faith," it makes me glad that all that is required for salvation is to have faith in the right object, and enough knowledge to know that Jesus Christ is Lord and Saviour. I'm glad that Hebrews 11:6 says "without faith it is impossible to please him," not "without a degree or advanced knowledge in theology it is impossible to please him."

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