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John81

Family Salvation

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The verses weren't necessarily meant to directly prove how that the "automatic salvation" thing was false doctrine, but to show that it is our manner of life which influences our spouse and family toward salvation. I don't know where you're getting the "culture" stuff.

Edited by heartstrings

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Are we confusing two separate thoughts here?

The Bible is plain that every man will stand before God and make an account for himself.
Even those who believe in different forms of salvation in general would agree that no man can do anything to make another saved.

But in certain cultures, particularly those which are heavily tribal, the average person would not dare to defy their chief or elder. This means that it very very difficult to reach these groups.
However, if the chief gets saved, then the tribe becomes "available" for salvation.
But it does not mean that everyone in the tribe automatically gets saved.

So, before the chief's salvation, it is very hard for anyone in the tribe to get saved because of the pressure.
After the chief gets saved the people are allowed to open up to the Gospel.

This is the cultural aspect.

But it neither stops nor ensures the salvation of any individual.

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The verses weren't necessarily meant to directly prove how that the "automatic salvation" thing was false doctrine, but to show that it is our manner of life which influences our spouse and family toward salvation. I don't know where you're getting the "culture" stuff.

In some cultures the father or patriarch was revered and the family pretty much followed him no matter what. They still had to of their own free will accept Christ but the family was more unified under the head of the household more than they are now.

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Are we confusing two separate thoughts here?

The Bible is plain that every man will stand before God and make an account for himself.
Even those who believe in different forms of salvation in general would agree that no man can do anything to make another saved.

But in certain cultures, particularly those which are heavily tribal, the average person would not dare to defy their chief or elder. This means that it very very difficult to reach these groups.
However, if the chief gets saved, then the tribe becomes "available" for salvation.
But it does not mean that everyone in the tribe automatically gets saved.

So, before the chief's salvation, it is very hard for anyone in the tribe to get saved because of the pressure.
After the chief gets saved the people are allowed to open up to the Gospel.

This is the cultural aspect.

But it neither stops nor ensures the salvation of any individual.

Yes, this was the point I was trying to make when I mentioned the manners and customs of that era.

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This can't be a cultural thing because the Bible is clear all these people were saved. One can't just decide they will follow whatever the patriarch is doing and be considered biblically saved. For the Bible to say one is saved, that means they have submitted to the calling of the Holy Ghost, surrendering to Christ as their Saviour and Lord.

 

A cultural Christian is one who calls themselves a Christian because their family is "Christian" or it's the dominate religion of their nation or some such.

 

Biblical salvation doesn't come through cultural followings. Catholics and Muslims believe one is a Catholic or Muslim simply because of the family they belong to. Sadly America is full of secular Christians who are not biblically saved Christians, but are cultural Christians who call themselves Christian simply because their family is "Christian".

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In some cultures the father or patriarch was revered and the family pretty much followed him no matter what. They still had to of their own free will accept Christ but the family was more unified under the head of the household more than they are now.

Contrary to the state of deterioration in modern American culture, Biblically, the father is still, today, supposed to be the patriarch of the family. When a father of a household gets saved, he becomes a 'new creature' and his life begins to transform, the change can be so drastic that he will become the leader in that home.,,,no matter what modern culture is. Likewise If the mom gets saved first, she can take the lead by giving godly submission to her husband.  If your home life is transformed from one of sin, strife and turmoil into one of peace and joy, it can influence the rest of the family to want to get saved.

Edited by heartstrings

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I see in the latest issue of Sword of the Lord they put forth a clarifying statement regarding the article/sermon mentioned in the OP.

 

The explanation is a little weak (to me anyway) but the editor (Sheldon Smith) did make a clear statement he/Sword believe salvation is an individual matter.

 

Even though they received many letters and calls regarding the original article/sermon due to the clear presentation therein that if one member of a family gets saved Scripture either guarantees or virtually guarantees the family will be saved too; especially if the saved one prays for them; Smith said he doesn't think that's what the article/sermon actually says.

 

Yet, that article/sermon mirrors one of the teachings of Andrew Murray, who did declare what amounts to family, or household, salvation as being a biblical promise and The Sword does sell Murray books, though I don't know if they sell the book containing that teaching.

 

In any event, though The Sword put forth a very weak defense of their printing that article/sermon, they did at least make a clear statement of belief that salvation is an individual matter. (some see this as a mixed signal since the article/sermon so clearly presents family/household salvation as a biblical promise even as The Sword says they don't believe that)

 

Anyway, I thought this update should be put forth since The Sword took the time to address the issue.

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Why would anyone find this a negative thing?

 

I think it would be a comfort to know God is going to work on you if someone in your family is saved.

 

Sometimes people tend to panic when they hear the truth of the Gospel, because some Christians try to scare them into it.

When I got saved, it was not out of fear of hell, but I was drawn by the

free mercy of the God of all creation, dying on a cross for me out of his love for me. 

 

I think people over emphasize fear.

 

The Lord wants all to be saved, and the percentage of one getting saved is highly prOBable when one is in a Christian home.

 

To say otherwise is to doubt God knows what his word can effect, when it is concentrated around the lost soul.

 

His word will not return void.

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