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Home » Uncategorized » What must I do to be saved? Luke 18:18 & Acts 16:29,30.

What must I do to be saved? Luke 18:18 & Acts 16:29,30.

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We who hold to the DoG’s are falsely accused, most of the time, that we hold that man has nothing to do with his/her salvation. That could not be further from the truth. We just have come to understand that man has no responseability(not able to respond is what I am conveying here) until he/she is first quickened, and then he/she is response-able. We were responsible for our sins a long time before we were response-able. Now, let’s take a look at these two verses I have in my blog title, and I pray I can articualte God’s work coinciding with our responsibilty to respond to that work.

Luke 18:18 And a certain ruler asked him, saying, Good Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?

Now, here we have a man who seems to be sincerly asking Jesus a very serious question. But how sincere was this question? Jesus named off five of the commandments, such as “Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, and Honour thy father and mother”. This young ruler then went on to say, “All these have I kept from my youth up.” Jesus went on to say that he still lacked one thing. He needed to sell his possession, distribute it amongst the poor, pick up his cross, and follow Him. Now, what did this young ruler do? He bowed his head and walked away, and I can find nothing in the record of God that he ever came back. He was a man who wanted to justify himself in the sight of God, yet, without faith, you have no justification. God has chosen to justify the heathen by faith(Gal. 3:8).

Now, onto the other verses in Acts 16:

Acts 16:29 Then he called for a light, and sprang in, and came trembling, and fell down before Paul and Silas,

30 And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved?

Here we can see a man who seems to be really troubled. He was the one over them in the prison. If they were to escape, death was almost a certain thing. As Paul and Silas were singing hymns and praising God, the prison shook so fiercely that the prison doors flew open and woke the guard from his sleep(a major “no-no” for a prison guard to do, btw). He, after he saw the doors flung opened, was going to fall upon his sword and die, instead of facing his bosses and being killed by them. But Paul and Silas tell him to “do thyself no harm, for we are all still here”. He then comes in and asks them what he needed to do to be saved. Paul and Silas give him the simplest answer, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved.”

This is where I want to show man’s responsibilty to God’s work, God’s call, God’s drawing a man unto Himself. We can tell people to believe on Jesus and be saved, and that’s the truth. But it’s not as simple as that sentence states it. Anyone can say they believe in Jesus, but does it originate from their heart or mouth? If it comes from their mouth, it’s as much salvific as taking in a deep breath. If it comes from the heart, then there’s the answer. It’s with the heart(soul of man) that believes savingly to the soul of man. It’s the heart of man(soul) that God quickens to hear that gospel. It’s with the heart of man that God gives the measure of faith, that saving faith that is needed to be converted. God quickens a man, and in this quickening, man is given faith to believe. Without faith, it’s impossible to please God(Heb. 11:6). God, in this quickening, has opened the deafened ears, given sight to the blinded eyes, and a new heart to believe with(Ezek. 11:19 36:26), so that he can then seek after Him. We as sinners, were lost, without a hope in this world. But those who God chose from before the foundation of the world, had a Saviour prepared, a Shepherd to call His flock unto Himself, and would do everything necessary to procure salvation for them.

In John 8 we see some who come to Jesus, but with the wrong motive(s). The Pharisees and Saducees had brought a woman caught in the very act of adultery to Him, and Jesus took them to task, and showed them that anyone who is without sin, first cast a stone at her. It came to where it was only her and Him, and He told her He didn’t condemn her either, and go and sin no more. They, the Pharisees and Saducees were boasting in their fleshly linegae, and thought that was all that was needed. But Jesus told them this in verse 44: “Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.” So eventhough they came to Jesus, they hadn’t been drawn, they hadn’t been given to Him via the Father, they weren’t His sheep. Man can not come to God just any old way he likes to. He has to be first, chosen/elected by God from before the foundation of the world, second, “because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth”(2 Thess.2:13){IOW sanctified}, third,given the measure of faith to believe(Romans 12:3), fourth, respond to God’s work(Romans 10:9,10).

Furthermore, look at John 5:37-40:

37 And the Father himself, which hath sent me, hath borne witness of me. Ye have neither heard his voice at any time, nor seen his shape.

38 And ye have not his word abiding in you: for whom he hath sent, him ye believe not.

39 Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.

40 And ye will not come to me, that ye might have life.

In verse 38, Jesus stated, “And ye have not His word abiding in you”. And in verse 40 He stated, “And ye WILL NOT come to me, that ye might have life”. Why did these Jews not have His word abiding in them, and why would they not come(notice He said will not and not “could not”)? The reason why these Jews didn’t have His word within them, and they would not come to Jesus was because they weren’t of His sheep. Some may think this is an awful doctrine I am spelling out, but not so. If God hadn’t chosen to elect some, none of us would be saved, but rather, ALL would be cast headlong into the lake of fire. God would be just, holy, pure, above reproach if He chose to not save one of us. But in His grace, love, and mercy, He chose a people in Christ before the foundation of the world, and these are the ones that Jesus came to die for. Look at two passages that support this:

Psalm 14:1 The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none that doeth good.

2 The Lord looked down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there were any that did understand, and seek God.

3 They are all gone aside, they are all together become filthy: there is none that doeth good, no, not one.

4 Have all the workers of iniquity no knowledge? who eat up my people as they eat bread, and call not upon the Lord.

5 There were they in great fear: for God is in the generation of the righteous.

6 Ye have shamed the counsel of the poor, because the Lord is his refuge.

7 Oh that the salvation of Israel were come out of Zion! when the Lord bringeth back the captivity of his people, Jacob shall rejoice, and Israel shall be glad.

Romans 3:10-18

10 As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:

11 There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God.

12 They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.

13 Their throat is an open sepulchre; with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips:

14 Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness:

15 Their feet are swift to shed blood:

16 Destruction and misery are in their ways:

17 And the way of peace have they not known:

18 There is no fear of God before their eyes.

All have sinned and come short of the glory of God(Romans 3:23). When we are born into this world, we are born sinners, and are under God’s wrath as children of disobedience(John 3:36). None of us at any time, chose to seek God without an unctioing by the Spirit. That is why it is imperitive that the Spirit moves first, and in this movement, comes the quickening, faith, sanctifying, and saving of the soul.

So in summation, we MUST respond to God’s work, God’s call to salvation, God’s drawing us, but we can’t do this until after He first quickens us, gives us faith and a new heart to believe with, eyes to see with, and ears to hear with. That is why you see Jesus state many times, “He that hath ears, let him hear”, “Who hath ears to hear, let him hear”, “If any man hath ears to hear, let him hear”, etc. God has to make a man able to respond to His calling.

I will leave you with a few verses to ponder upon:

Ezekiel 11:19 And I will give them one heart, and I will put a new spirit within you; and I will take the stony heart out of their flesh, and will give them an heart of flesh:

Ezekiel 36:26 A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.

Deuteronomy 32:10 He found him in a desert land, and in the waste howling wilderness; he led him about, he instructed him, he kept him as the apple of his eye.

Jeremiah 31:18 I have surely heard Ephraim bemoaning himself thus; Thou hast chastised me, and I was chastised, as a bullock unaccustomed to the yoke: turn thou me, and I shall be turned; for thou art the Lord my God.

Psalm 27:8 When thou saidst, Seek ye my face; my heart said unto thee, Thy face, Lord, will I seek.

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