Don Wilton’s ‘How to be Saved’ Front Loading Gospel False Teaching

My response in blue.

If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. —Romans 10:9-10, ESV

9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. 10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvationRomans 10:9-10 (KJV)

This article entitled ‘How to be saved” by Don Wilton relies on the English Standard Version of the Bible, which has changed Lord Jesus found in the KJV to ‘Jesus is Lord’ in the works salvation message taught in the ESV. Article in red. My comments in blue.

Here is the start of the article “How to be Saved”.

Everywhere I look today, every letter that I read, every place that I find myself in, I find people who are deeply in need of a miracle.

But what is a miracle?

A miracle is something only God can do. It is the impossible, made possible by the power of God. In light of this amazing truth, the greatest miracle of all is themiracle of salvation(this linked to a false gospel given by Billy Graham on Peace With God). The wonderful fact of our personal relationship with God—in and through the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ—lies at the very heart of the love of God for all people. Nothing in this world is more wonderful than having peace with God through Jesus Christ.

The Apostle Paul, writing to the church at Rome, encapsulated the basic fundamentals of Christian conversion. In so doing, he invited us to read for ourselves exactly what God requires of us in order to be adopted into His family as totally forgiven sinners, with the guarantee of eternal life in Heaven. In short, the Bible assures us that we “will be saved” if, in fact, we comply with the two essential requirements for salvation.

>> Billy Graham on how to know you’re saved (false gospel)

Let’s take a look at these together. First, we have to confess. This involves much more than a simple acknowledgement of the existence of God. Even the demons acknowledge God! Confession carries the deep and abiding conviction that God alone is sovereign.

Now we come to the works for salvation when they are subtly adding that more needs to be done for salvation, when receiving salvation is by grace, as Ephesians 2:8-9 clearly states.

8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.

The demons know who Christ is, but this was not the belief that leads to faith in Christ alone for salvation. These false teachers try to scare others by using scripture like this. James 2:18-25 is written to brethren or believers. The emphasis James gives is that faith in Christ should accompany good works, which will be a good testimony to the world, but this has absolutely nothing to do with salvation. Salvation is a gift of God given through His grace. The devils believe, but they are of the enemy and not the sheep of Christ, therefore why would they want to do the will of God in trusting Christ alone for salvation.

18 Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works. 19 Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble. 20 But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead? 21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar? 22 Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect? 23 And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God. 24 Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only. 25 Likewise also was not Rahab the harlot justified by works, when she had received the messengers, and had sent them out another way? 26 For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also – James 2:18-26

Christ died for the sins of the world, which mean’s everybody in this world. Those who need a saviour have acknowledged that he or she has sinned against God, and is trusting Jesus alone for eternal life. He alone paid the penalty of sin. He was sinless and yet He chose to die while we were in our sin.

6 For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. 7 For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. 8 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. 9 Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. 10 For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life. 11 And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonementRomans 5:6-11

The gospel is simple, but these self-righteous teachers make it complicated for millions of people who genuinely want to be saved. We trust in the death, burial and resurrection of Christ. So say that Christ did not do enough, and we need to ‘work to prove salvation’ is an accursed gospel.

1 Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; 2 By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. 3 For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; 4 And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures1 Corinthians 15:1-4

The proof of genuine conviction will be accompanied by repentance from sin,

Here we go again. Another work added to salvation in ‘repentance of sin’. Christ shed his blood on the cross. This is enough. God accepted His blood sacrifice. Repentance of sin or ‘genuine conviction’ is not found in the King James Bible. It might be found in the corrupted bible versions, but not in the KJV.

Results for repentance of sin, left in bold to show that there is no such term ‘repentance of sin’, but man adding works to the simple gospel of grace.  

John did baptize in the wilderness, and preach the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins – Mark 1:4

When Jesus heard it, he saith unto them, They that are whole have no need of the physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentanceMark 2:17

And he came into all the country about Jordan, preaching the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins; – Luke 3:3

And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem – Luke 24:47

Him hath God exalted with his right hand to be a Prince and a Saviour, for to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins – Acts 5:31

Search for ‘genuine conviction’ in the KJV.

0 Bible results for “genuine conviction.”

Sorry, we didn’t find any results for your search. Please try the following:

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The Holy Spirit has a job to do. To convict the world of sin and lead people to the Lord Jesus Christ. To add words like ‘genuine’ to conviction is unnecessary. The Holy Spirit is another aspect of God Almighty. The Holy Spirit leads us to Christ, and Christ is our righteousness to God. The three are one, but with different roles within the Godhead.

Absolute trust in Jesus Christ’s ability and authority to provide the “way” to salvation, and an unapologetic submission to His Lordship. We do not “make” Jesus Christ Lord; He is Lord!

Trust is trust. Again, there is no need to use ‘absolute’ trust, when trust is faith or belief in Christ. He has made the way possible, but when the gospel message is butchered like this to add works to grace, sadly the people are put into bondage and may start living the Christian life without actually ever being saved. There is no assurance of salvation in such a false message. Discipleship has been added to the gift of salvation. They use fancy words like ‘unapologetic’ submission to his Lordship. Jesus is Lord of all. He knows this. We know this. If one wants to submit to Christ as a discipleship after being born again (believing on Christ alonef for salvation), good works will be rewarded in heaven, but works has nothing to do with salvation. Nobody deserves to go to heaven. We have all sinned and fallen short of God’s glory (Romans 3:23). It is by grace we are saved and not of works (Ephesians 2:8-9).

When we confess Jesus Christ as Lord (again false gospel url), we place ourselves at the foot of the cross in absolute surrender to God who, through the Lord Jesus Christ, has made it possible for sinful man to be reconciled to a holy and righteous God.

Again this is discipleship frontloaded onto the gift of salvation, which a gift of God by grace, not of works. (Ephesians 2:8-9) They try to make it sound so holy, but they are creating a difficult gospel in which people look to themselves, and not Christ’s finished work. Billy Graham’s gospel will not save, because it corrupts the simple gospel that saves.

Second, we have to believe. The act of “believing” carries the distinct idea of an ongoing spiritual condition whereby the human heart genuinely capitulates before the throne of God. This act of abandoned trust is the essential ingredient of saving faith because it recognizes that the sinner is totally incapable of providing what only God’s supernatural and gracious gift can give. It literally presents to a holy God a mind that understands and accepts the biblical truth about Jesus Christ. At the same time, it offers God a human heart that is humbled by the seriousness of God’s rejection of sin in any form. Such rejection lies at the heart of “the wages of sin” and means the complete condemnation of the sinner without remedy apart from God.

Messages like this are difficult. Salvation is not presented as a gift by grace, but instead works works works are added. This is very clear. The simple fact is that we can do nothing for God until we are born again of God. We are born into the family of God by trusting Jesus Christ died for our sin. He was buried, and then resurrected. He is a living God who will save whosoever believes in Him.

Paul feared for the Corinthians that their minds would be corrupted, and isn’t this exactly what we face today? Man’s interpretation of the gospel.

But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ 2 Corinthians 11:3

Paul was constantly defending the gospel, which he received by revelation of Jesus Christ.

6 I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: 7 Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. 8 But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. 9As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed 10 For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men? for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ. 11 But I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man. 12 For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ  – Galatians 1:6-12

On the other hand, this act of abandoned trust is accompanied by a spiritual joy and gratitude because of the unimaginable mercy and grace of a loving God.

This is true. A trust in Christ alone relieves the burden of having to work or prove salvation in the eyes of man, and brings peace and joy. A bit of Good News for once.

It should also be stated that the act of “believing” must be proven by the act of submission. When we “believe in our hearts” we are bowing our entire beings before a holy and righteous God. We are submitting our wills to the Lord Jesus Christ and trusting in Him as the only hope of our salvation.

Again, they are making salvation difficult by frontloading submission onto belief. Only God knows who has trusted on Christ for salvation. God looks at the heart.

Accordingly, the journey of Christian discipleship begins at this very instant of salvation, because we cannot submit to Jesus Christ as Savior apart from submitting to Him as Lord. Because He alone is Lord, it follows that He alone is sufficient in every way. His will is instantly supreme, and His glory and honor instantly become the priority in every way.

No, salvation is the gift of God, and we receive this after hearing the gospel. Discipleship is the choice of serving God afterward, but scripture is clear that some believers remain carnal and do not grow. We must exhort one another and serve God out of gratitude in what He had done for us, but not to prove salvation or work our way to heaven. Believing on Christ is the will of the Father.

39 And this is the Father’s will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day. 40 And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last dayJohn 6:39-40

The believing heart is spiritually joined in the miracle of Christ’s resurrection. This is essential for salvation because Jesus’ resurrection was the ultimate validation of His position as the “only begotten” Son of the living God and of His role as our High Priest. The resurrection proves that Jesus is exactly who He says He is. Furthermore, it provides the ultimate evidence that our salvation belongs to God! We believe the Father has accepted the sacrifice of the Son as full payment for the sin of man. Bottom line: without the resurrection, there would be no salvation.

The sacrifice of Jesus was a one time deed.

11 But Christ being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building; 12 Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us13 For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of an heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh: 14 How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?– Hebrews 9:11-14

So we are presented here an incredible picture of God’s love for all people. Because of the sin of Adam, all people will die eternally. But in Christ Jesus, we are made alive. This life comes to us because God “so loved the world.” Jesus Christ was born on earth, was crucified for our sin, and, by the power of God, was raised to life. In so doing, Jesus conquered sin, death and the grave. When we confess that Jesus is Lord and believe in our hearts that God raised Him from the dead, we will be saved!

There is no need to confess Jesus as Lord. Remember the KJV says The Lord Jesus, because He is Lord of all. We just need to admit that we have sinned against God and repent (change our mind) about trusting in our works for eternal life, and trust on Christ who died for our sin.

Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting lifeJohn 6:47

Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto lifeJohn 5:24

He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him – John 3:36

And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son1 John 5:11

And this is the promise that he hath promised us, even eternal life1 John 2:25

It is important to remember that everything to do with salvation belongs exclusively to God. He is both the author and the finisher of our salvation.

This is true. God is the author and the finisher of our faith.

Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of GodHebrews 12:2

Perhaps this is why Paul places such a powerful condition on what he is saying. I am always inclined to think of this as the “no ifs, ands or buts” of salvation.

The pure joy of these two requirements lies in the fact that we are all eligible to receive God’s amazing grace. And, once having been saved through God’s grace, all Christian people are called upon to share this wonderful Good News with all the nations of the world so that others can come to know Him, too!

This gospel message given by Don Wilton through Billy Graham’s website is difficult to understand and believe.

We are all sinners who have failed God’s standard of perfection. We all need a saviour. Jesus, who is God in the flesh, came to earth, was born of a Virgin, was tempted in every way that we are, but did not sin. He lived the perfect life that we could not. He gave His life for the sins of this world at the cross so that we can be reconciled to a Holy God through His righteousness. He asks that you believe on Him for salvation, and once you trust Him alone you are born into God’s kingdom. Do not go by feelings of salvation but trust God’s word by faith. Separate salvation and discipleship.

Salvation is a gift of God through His grace and cannot be earned by works, while discipleship is the choice to serve God after salvation. There are consequences when we disobey God in this life such as loss of fellowship with God,  loss of rewards in heaven, a weaker testimony toward unbelievers,  or even a shortened life, but this does not result in a loss of salvation. God chastises His children.

Any church or teaching that gets you to take your eyes off Christ so that you are looking to your self for proof of salvation is preaching an accursed gospel.

 

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