Is Doing Good Works a Factor or Necessary in Conversion?

Is Doing Good Works a Factor or Necessary in Conversion?

Joined: January 2nd, 2005, 6:45 am

October 6th, 2012, 8:10 pm #1

[color=#0000FF" size="3" face="times]I am troubled by even members of the body (church) of Christ who, along with their "faith only" denominational friends, share and proclaim a common belief in the religious world that good works are not necessary in the "Christian's salvation."

These same members of the Lord's church gladly sing popular Christian rock songs that it's "NOT by human endeavor" because Christ paid for it ALL on the cross. ALL ... implying that present and future SINS are automatically forgiven even without asking for forgiveness and without repenting.

The Scripture tells me differently that Christians -- members of the body of Christ -- are to maintain good works or works of righteousness. There are numerous passages that support this truth. After all, the Holy Scripture is God's truth.

Unless we are able to to distinguish that man goes through 3 stages or periods in his journey to eternity, we will never understand or diminish or eliminate the conflict concerning man's salvation.

The three (3) stages are as follows:

(1) Past Salvation -- the CONVERSION PROCESS
(2) Present Salvation -- the current stage of Christian living
(3) Future Salvation -- the Judgment that it's either heaven or hell.


This current topic is about the CONVERSION PROCESS[/color] -- the first stage. Do you agree that good works are NOT required for one outside of Christ to be CONVERTED? A correct assessment of this premise will prove that FAITH is essential to obtaining redemption in the blood of Christ.

Common passages used are:

(1) Without including the following verse 10 is Ephesians 2:8,9 -- "For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith--and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God--not by works, so that no one can boast." (NIV)

(2) "Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost" (KJV)

The Bible tells us: "Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth." (II Tim. 2:15, KJV)

When we rightly divide the word of truth, there would be no biblical conflict.

Again, this topic is about CONVERSION. Be assured that I am not a "faith only" Christian. But I would like to propose that in conversion, good works are not necessary. But I would also like to propose that doing "good works" has its place in our present salvation.
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Joined: July 29th, 2010, 2:32 pm

October 6th, 2012, 8:35 pm #2

This current topic is about the CONVERSION PROCESS -- the first stage. Do you agree that good works are NOT required for one outside of Christ to be CONVERTED? A correct assessment of this premise will prove that FAITH is essential to obtaining redemption in the blood of Christ.

I believe that most of the troublers CLAIM that baptism is a good work and is therefore not required to be saved." John Mark Hicks and the Stone-Campbell Sect treats this as Patternism and Legalism.

John said that the "vipers" would have to prove that they had repented or turned from their evil ways.

Psalms 15:1 LORD, who shall abide in thy tabernacle? who shall dwell in thy holy hill?
Psalms 15:2 He that walketh uprightly, and worketh righteousness, and speaketh the truth in his heart.

Isaiah 64:5 Thou meetest him that rejoiceth and worketh righteousness, those that remember thee in thy ways: behold, thou art wroth; for we have sinned: in those is continuance, and we shall be saved.


Of Cornelius, rather than being a Jew and WORKED the Law of Moses, one who is qualified to be baptized is:

Acts 10:35 But in every nation he that feareth him, and worketh righteousness, is accepted with him.

Cornelius was such a person and was commanded to be baptized.

However, because "saved" in the commands means to become a disciple, the key question is "do you believe that Jesus is the Christ the Son of God."

Repentance for other people seems to say that one has to turn from working unrighteousness and begin doing what is right.

Tough question.



Last edited by Ken.Sublett on October 6th, 2012, 8:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: January 2nd, 2005, 6:45 am

October 6th, 2012, 8:55 pm #3

[color=#0000FF" size="3" face="times]By John Mark Hicks' definition that baptism is a good work, his implication is that faith or belief is also a good work. Duh!!! Both of them (to believe and to be baptized) are NOT works -- rather, they're a couple of a number of STEPS to CONVERSION.

If both faith and baptism were "works," and Christians are to maintain good works, does Hicks mean that the Christian needs to be baptized so many times to maintain good works while maintaining faith in Christian living?

"Faith" and "works" are related but are separate elements in Christian living, according to James, chapter 2. The Christian must live by both faith and good works.

Again, in conversion, good works are not necessary. Must the world's worst criminal who now has faith in God's Son and is ready to be converted achieve works of righteousness prior to being converted to Christ? I think NOT. But once he becomes a member of the Lord's church, a Christian, he must maintain his faith and produce good works or works of righteousness.[/color]
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Joined: July 29th, 2010, 2:32 pm

October 6th, 2012, 9:19 pm #4

If both faith and baptism were "works," and Christians are to maintain good works, does Hicks mean that the Christian needs to be baptized so many times to maintain good works while maintaining faith in Christian living?

They think of "salvation" as a punched ticket on the Joy Bus to heaven: they had better be pretty perfect. Rather, one is baptized to become a Disciple: a student just has to be willing to learn. Because they reject the "text book" they can't really be a disciple. I am surprised that they do not or can not read the context and determine who is doing the speaking.

The REbaptism concept has been one of the attacks on Alexander Campbell. It was the Hicks side of the movement which taught that when a person sins they need to be baptized over and over. They do not know that when Campbell spoke of rebaptism he might have been speaking of an infant being sprinkled or a Baptists who boasted that he WAS saved before baptism. In fact neither had applied to the School of Christ.

"Faith" and "works" are related but are separate elements in Christian living, according to James, chapter 2. The Christian must live by both faith and good works.

The blurb I posted on Ephesians 4 where they cannot see any of the words beyond saved by grace through faith ask FROM WHAT are we saved. and does saved mean the original remission of sins at all.
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Joined: January 2nd, 2005, 6:45 am

October 7th, 2012, 1:54 am #5

[color=#0000FF" size="3" face="times]I am troubled by even members of the body (church) of Christ who, along with their "faith only" denominational friends, share and proclaim a common belief in the religious world that good works are not necessary in the "Christian's salvation."

These same members of the Lord's church gladly sing popular Christian rock songs that it's "NOT by human endeavor" because Christ paid for it ALL on the cross. ALL ... implying that present and future SINS are automatically forgiven even without asking for forgiveness and without repenting.

The Scripture tells me differently that Christians -- members of the body of Christ -- are to maintain good works or works of righteousness. There are numerous passages that support this truth. After all, the Holy Scripture is God's truth.

Unless we are able to to distinguish that man goes through 3 stages or periods in his journey to eternity, we will never understand or diminish or eliminate the conflict concerning man's salvation.

The three (3) stages are as follows:

(1) Past Salvation -- the CONVERSION PROCESS
(2) Present Salvation -- the current stage of Christian living
(3) Future Salvation -- the Judgment that it's either heaven or hell.


This current topic is about the CONVERSION PROCESS[/color] -- the first stage. Do you agree that good works are NOT required for one outside of Christ to be CONVERTED? A correct assessment of this premise will prove that FAITH is essential to obtaining redemption in the blood of Christ.

Common passages used are:

(1) Without including the following verse 10 is Ephesians 2:8,9 -- "For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith--and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God--not by works, so that no one can boast." (NIV)

(2) "Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost" (KJV)

The Bible tells us: "Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth." (II Tim. 2:15, KJV)

When we rightly divide the word of truth, there would be no biblical conflict.

Again, this topic is about CONVERSION. Be assured that I am not a "faith only" Christian. But I would like to propose that in conversion, good works are not necessary. But I would also like to propose that doing "good works" has its place in our present salvation.
[color=#0000FF" size="3" face="times]Good works in Christian living: YES!!! Let's deal with that topic later.

Good works in conversion: NO!!!

That's right. Doing good works in order to complete the conversion process is simply not necessary. As I mentioned earlier, the world's worst criminal does not need to produce works of righteousness beforehand and in order to be converted to Christ. Does he need to love and serve God PRIOR to conversion? I think not. Does he need to love and serve his neighbor PRIOR TO conversion? I think not.

The object of CONVERSION is to have those PAST SINS (not future sins) remitted in the blood of the Lamb. Romans 3:23 avers -- "For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God." Continuing in vs. 24-25, we read: "Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God."

Acts 2 clearly explains the process of CONVERSION: "[36] Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ.[37] Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do? [38] Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost."

The STEPS are in that passage (Acts 2:37,38):

(1) HEAR: [v.37] the gospel that Jesus the crucified is Lord and Christ;
(2) BELIEVE: "pricked in the heart" that the Savior is Lord and Christ;
(3) REPENT: a response to "what shall we do";
(4) BE BAPTIZED: in order to receive forgiveness of sins and a clear conscience.

We see that doing good works is NULL and VOID in conversion. To those who have done good works, e.g., the great philanthropists, it is "from scratch," just as it is to those who have committed crime. It is all about faith in Christ, repentance and baptism in order to receive redemption in the blood of the Lamb.

Coming up: Why it is about CONVERSION in Ephesians 2:8,9 (faith without works) that can be clearly explained.[/color]
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Joined: July 29th, 2010, 2:32 pm

October 7th, 2012, 2:07 am #6

That means that baptism is NOT a work.

Not a work of the Law. Not a work of self righteousness. A person is only asked to confess and that is not a work.

The Patternist-Legalists points mostly to NOT beginning to do something you have never in recorded history done. That's making instrumental music in the assembly. The Disciple "fathers" in a trial to see whether they could confiscate a church told the judge that the ORGAN (only) was not an act of worship and if it became an act of worship THAT would be a sin. The instrumentalists make most of what they call "worship" into a musical performance--all of the instruments.

Next, as John Mark Hicks defines Alwxander Campbell, making baptism necessary for the remission of sins is a patternistic legalistic ugly thing. You have to believe that he has a hatred for those who feed his face and loves to conspire with those STILL using force to try to impose instruments.

Nothing that God PROMISES with conditions can ever be called a work. So, we are stuck with those who have never ceased trying to turn school of the word into a "theater for holy entertainment." You can hire more performers that way: isn't that worse then a healthy person on food stamps.
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Joined: January 2nd, 2005, 6:45 am

October 7th, 2012, 8:48 pm #7

[color=#0000FF" size="3" face="times]Baptism is not a work. If it is a work, belief or faith should also be a work. But how can belief or faith be a work?

John Mark Hicks, with the other change agents operating in the brotherhood, is simply aligning himself with the Baptist teaching that baptism is NOT necessary in order to have a conversion prospect's sins be remitted (past sins cleansed) and become a member of (or added to) the Lord's body, the church.

The Baptist teaching is that once a sinner is convicted of sin and believes (has faith) in the Savior, he is automatically forgiven of sins WITHOUT BAPTISM and is SAVED. Then, he is baptized only as a symbol or confirmation of that faith. He may be baptized (AFTER being "saved") a week later, a month later, etc.

Of course, contrary to how the change agents have acquired this doctrine, we know what the Scripture teaches that one must believe and be baptized IN ORDER TO BE SAVED.

Is this how far the change agents operating in churches of Christ have gone? Just take a look at Max Lucado's view of baptism -- who still clings to his belief when he was a Baptist. Check this out at the Oak Hills Church (formerly "of Christ") website -- and note that its current minister, Randy Frazee, Lucado's replacement, has this to say about himself. See for yourself: [/color]

http://www.randyfrazee.com/
As the senior minister of Oak Hills Church in San Antonio, Texas, I have the privilege of teaching and leading in partnership with pastor and author, Max Lucado. Prior to coming to Oak Hills, I served as the teaching pastor at Willow Creek Community Church and spent 15 years as the senior pastor at Pantego Bible Church in Fort Worth Texas. God has filled my life with amazing experiences and for that I am grateful. [emphases mine, D.C.]
[color=#0000FF" size="3" face="times]Yeah, right: pastor ... Willow Creek Community Church!!! Randy Frazee, formerly pastor at Willow Creek Community Church? Pardon me: I have to remind myself that Oak Hills Church has affiliated itself with the Community Church. What else is new with the change agents creating turmoil in the church?

OK ... we're still dealing with the topic of "conversion."[/color]
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B
B

October 7th, 2012, 10:31 pm #8

According to the experience I've had with Southern Baptists, they believe that baptism is required neither for salvation nor to place membership at particular congregation. They believe baptism is entirely optional, and a person is still considered "saved," even if he chooses to live his entire life without ever being baptized. Therefore, if a "saved" person should happen to choose baptism, it is done only when it is convenient for all parties involved.
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Racnor
Racnor

October 7th, 2012, 11:02 pm #9

Their junior youth also run off old men who will not play the organ with modern upbeat music. Perhaps that is your biggest gripe?
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Racnor
Racnor

October 8th, 2012, 12:08 am #10

Baptism and the Lord's Supper

Christian baptism is the immersion of a believer in water in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. It is an act of obedience symbolizing the believer's faith in a crucified, buried, and risen Saviour, the believer's death to sin, the burial of the old life, and the resurrection to walk in newness of life in Christ Jesus. It is a testimony to his faith in the final resurrection of the dead. Being a church ordinance, it is prerequisite to the privileges of church membership and to the Lord's Supper.

The Lord's Supper is a symbolic act of obedience whereby members of the church, through partaking of the bread and the fruit of the vine, memorialize the death of the Redeemer and anticipate His second coming.

Matthew 3:13-17; 26:26-30; 28:19-20; Mark 1:9-11; 14:22-26; Luke 3:21-22; 22:19-20; John 3:23; Acts 2:41-42; 8:35-39; 16:30-33; 20:7; Romans 6:3-5; 1 Corinthians 10:16,21; 11:23-29; Colossians 2:12.

http://www.sbc.net/bfm/bfm2000.asp
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