BY GRACE ALONE (PART 27)
All of salvation is because of God. No part of it is because of man, therefore, no part of it is conditioned on man because no man could ever begin to even partly fulfil any condition to become saved, for “…verily every man at his best state is altogether vanity…surely every man is vanity” (Psa. 39:5,11). The teaching that God saves a man by enabling him by grace to do what is necessary for him to get saved, is revealed as utter nonsense because it shows that salvation awaits a work of man’s, and not saving grace alone. What they say a man does is attributed to grace. What such people just cannot get their heads around is the fact that salvation is all by grace, it is all by God. “…if by grace, then is it no more of works…” (Rom. 11:6). ANYTHING A MAN DOES IS BECAUSE HE IS ALREADY SAVED!!! Nothing a man does can get him saved, ergo, it is grace that saves a man. How could an imperfect work done by an imperfect man get him perfectly saved? Grace does not get a man to save himself, for grace is God saving His people from their sins. “By grace ye are saved” (Eph. 2:5). A man is saved by grace. Grace is what saves. Grace is God saving by what He does. Why would God need to get you to do something to get you saved, when grace is the power of God that saves! Saved by grace and kept by grace. A saved man is neither saved by what he does nor does he remain saved by what he does. Salvation is by the power of God that makes spiritually dead people alive solely by His grace. Grace makes alive, and is in accordance with the will of God not the will of man, for no man has any will for God before God by grace has made him alive. Jesus said a man can do nothing to come to Him, so prior to salvation THERE IS NOTHING A MAN CAN DO to assist in his salvation, or make it easier for God to save him. Nothing can be done by a man unless it is given to him, and what is given to him is salvation by the immutable grace of God. Salvation is a gift brought by the means of the grace of God. Grace brings salvation (see Titus 2:11), it does not wait for you to do anything. With grace comes salvation. You cannot have grace without being saved. Grace and salvation are two sides of the same coin. Grace brings salvation, it does not lead you to it, it does not help you to find it, grace gives you unmerited salvation. What a man does after he is saved is because he is saved. It is only a man saved by grace, saved by God that can perform the works that God has ordained for him to do. A man saved by grace is a man saved by God. A man saved by God is a man saved by what God ALONE has done. How, for instance, would a man believe, or want to believe, the true God when there is nothing in him that can prompt him to even seek God! “…there is none that seeketh after God” (Rom. 3:11). How could a dead man believe in God? Would he not first need to be made alive. What could a man do to keep himself saved? If a man’s salvation demanded perfection, could his salvation be maintained by anything less? Of course not. If a man’s salvation is only by grace, could his salvation be maintained by anything less? Of course not. If a man’s salvation demanded the perfect Righteousness of Christ, could his salvation be maintained by anything less? Of course not. If it is the Holy Spirit Who makes alive, can that life be maintained by anyone less than God? Of course not. “Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?” (Gal. 3:3). All of salvation is because of God’s unmerited love for His chosen ones, and not the smallest degree of glory or praise is deserved by man—not before he is saved, and not after he is saved—for he is a mere recipient, a receptacle of God’s love, grace and mercy, made so by God, deserving of nothing, yet given everything. The elect of God are made to be recipients, receptacles of God’s love by God alone. Man is saved because of the love of God, and he remains saved because of the love of God in Christ (see 1 Pet. 1:4,5).
Salvation is all about God not man. Salvation is all about God, not ourselves. Salvation is all about the glory of God not the glory of man, for salvation is all about the grace of God not the works of men. The Good News of God, the Gospel of God is “the Gospel of the grace of God” (Acts 20:24), in the salvation of His people. God will save His people from their sins by His grace (see Matt. 1:21). “When it came time to name the Lord, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and told Joseph, ‘…thou shalt call His name JESUS: for He shall save His people from their sins’ (Matt. 1:21). The word ‘Jesus’ means ‘Yahweh is salvation’.” The Hebrew name for Jesus is ‘Yehoshua’ from which we get the name ‘Joshua’ which means ‘Yah is salvation’. "Jesus is an English transliteration of the Greek Iesoun. And this in turn is a Greek transliteration of the Hebrew Joshua. And Joshua is a combination of Yah and ‘salvation’ or ‘save’. It means ‘Yahweh saves’. This is appropriate since Jesus is Yahweh, the second Person of the Trinity, Who became flesh and is the salvation of His people. So Jesus means ‘Yahweh saves’. Jesus is Yahweh with a human nature come to save His people from their sins.” Salvation is all about Who God is and what God has done, and the true Christian boasts not in himself, his language is not ‘See what God has enabled me to do’, or ‘I chose God’, but rather "Come and hear, all ye that fear God, and I will declare what HE HATH DONE for my soul" (Psa. 66:16), and “Blessed is the man whom Thou choosest, and causest to approach unto Thee…” (Psa. 65:4). Saving grace does not help a man, it SAVES a man! A man God has chosen does not approach God, saying, "I choose you", but rather "...God be merciful to me a sinner" (Lk. 18:13). The Christian is not the one who chooses God, for it is God Who chose him before the very foundation of the world (see Eph. 1:4). THAT IS THE UNDERLYING PRINCIPAL OF GRACE!! Rather than ‘boasting’ in their ‘choice of God’, the Christian praises God for making him a part of His chosen generation. Christians are not a generation of choosers, but "...a chosen generation..." (1 Pet. 2:9). True believers and the angels in Heaven do not rejoice in a newly converted person having ‘chosen God’, but because “…God hath from the beginning chosen (them) to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth” (2 Thess. 2:13). Salvation is all about the beauty of God, not the ‘goodness’ of man. Salvation is about the grace of God, in other words, it is about Who God is and what He has done. Salvation is not about what man has to do, but what the Lord has done. The Gospel of grace is about God, not man. The Gospel of God is about the Good News of the grace of God, not the works of men. The Gospel of God is the Good News that God saves by His grace, not by the works and efforts of men, by which none could ever be saved. Salvation, glory, praise, grace, mercy and faith are things which come from God, and so are designed to point people to Him, that we might look upon Him, and see the glory of His Nature and fill our hearts with praise for Him, the only one deserving of any glory or praise for salvation. No one looks to themselves in adoration after they have been given a gift, but are thankful and praise-filled towards the gift giver. Their eyes are upon what they have been given and the one who gave it to them. They look not at themselves and what they have done, for they have done nothing. They rave about the gift giver and what he has done, and not about themselves, for they have nothing to boast about in themselves that they have been given a gift. HOW CAN ONE BOAST THAT THEY WERE GIVEN A GIFT WHICH NONE CAN DO ANYTHING TO DESERVE! When contemplating the gift, one cannot but think about the one who has given the gift. We do not consider ourselves as having earned the gift, but rather our boasting and our thanks are towards the gift giver for his generosity and kindness in giving us that which we did not deserve. Christians are mere recipients who do not deserve praise, but are obliged to praise the gift giver, for without Him they would have remained, and continued to be, nothing but children of Wrath.
By nature, that is, in his natural state, man is dead in sins, but God is alive. A saved man is not one who sought God, but one who was sought out by God and found. God searches for His sheep until He finds them (see Rom. 3:11 & Lk. 15:4,5 & Ezek. 34:11,12). Man is a sinner, God is the Saviour. Man is lost, God is the Seeker. Man is dead in sins, God is the one Who makes alive. By nature, man does not know he is lost and dead in sins, therefore, it is the Shepherd Who seeks out His sheep until He finds them. “…I was found of them that sought Me not; I was made manifest unto them that asked not after Me” (Rom. 10:20). “…these words are to be understood ‘concerning the nations of the world’. The common people among them sought after the things of the world; their philosophers sought after the wisdom of it; and the more devout and religious among them sought the observance of superstitious rites and ceremonies, and, at best and most, a little morality and external righteousness; but none sought after Christ, for they knew nothing of Him, and therefore did not so much as ask after Him; they did not ask counsel of Him, nor ask concerning Him, nor ask for Him; not for His coming into the world, as the Jews did, nor for the preaching of the Gospel among them, for it came among them unasked for, unexpected, and undesired, as well as undeserved by them, nor for any blessing of His; and yet such was His grace and goodness, that He was ‘found’ of these persons, in the preaching of the Gospel; which by His kind providence was brought among them, and they were brought under the hearing of it; and by the Spirit of God directed to Him in it, in Whom they found life, peace, pardon, righteousness, food, and rest, and every valuable blessing; a pearl of great price they found, a finding which can never be lost.” No man has yet ever found the only true God, for He cannot be found only revealed. A saved man did not suddenly believe, God, by grace, gave him the faith to believe. Before God made him alive, man, even elect man, was dead in sins, and in that deadness there was nothing but enmity against God (see Rom. 8:7), and a child of His Wrath. Dead men are spiritually stagnant and stuck in a miry pit of their own making, and anything they do to try and escape it only exacerbates their situation. In his natural state man is a nowhere man with nowhere to go and no way of getting there. He is bound for somewhere but gets nowhere. Before God loved the man, the man did not love God (see 1 Jn. 4:19). Before a man was saved he was lost. Before man had hope he was hopeless, before he was saved he was helpless. Before he was given the faith to believe God’s Gospel, man at best believed a false gospel, and in a god that cannot save. Without the truth, a man can only believe a lie, the saved man who believes the truth can only believe the truth.
Before a man is saved by grace, he believes that his works are indispensable in relation to salvation. If he does not believe his works were necessary to get saved, he is weighed down by the lie that has convinced him his works are essential to maintaining his perceived ‘salvation’. These are not ‘weak brethren’ as some call them, but lost people who know not God. If the Gospel of God is hid, it is hid to them that are lost, not weak. People who consider themselves Christian, but to whom the Gospel of God is hid, are lost people. Those who do not believe the doctrines of the Gospel of the grace of God which reveal the Righteousness of Jesus Christ, are lost people. They are not brethren at all, but ignorant lost people devoid of the knowledge of the Righteousness of God. “But if our Gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious Gospel of Christ, Who is the image of God, should shine unto them” (2 Cor. 4:3,4). After a man is saved by grace he knows that his works played no part in his being saved by grace (see Phil. 3:4-9). No man can come to God, no man has ever come to Him of his own accord. The only way a man can come to God is if he is drawn to Him by God’s love for him. The works of man are no segue to God, for a man is saved purely by grace. “No man can come to Me, except the Father which hath sent Me draw him…no man can come unto Me, except it were given unto him of My Father” (Jn. 6:44,65 cf. Jn. 14:6). Without the Father there is no salvation. If God does not draw, if God does not give, if God does not love, no man can come to the Lord Jesus. There is no hope for any man without God. Coming to God is a gift given to you, and not a work done by you. Nothing within a man can prompt him to seek the true God. Unless God has drawn the man he remains in his lost, spiritually debauched state, a hopeless creature without God. Without God there is no hope (see Eph. 2:12). Without grace there is no hope. Man has nothing he can turn to, not within him or without him, that can get him saved, for without God man is hope-less. Without God man is without salvation. The Lord Jesus said that with man salvation was an utter impossibility (see Matt. 19:26). But with God all things are possible, yes, even the salvation of a man, but it takes God to make it happen. It takes the Saviour to save, and the Spirit of God to make a man alive.
Salvation takes the will of God, not the will of man. It takes the grace of God not the works of men. Salvation is not a case of man coming to God and saying, ‘Save me for I cannot’. How dare any man, in his spiritually dead state, no less, assume that he can approach God anyway! People say, ‘I asked God to save me when I was seven’, or ‘I went to God and asked to be saved’, or ‘I responded to the altar call’, etc. How dare any man presume to think that he can come to God! That he even knows who the only true God is! No man can even desire the only true God without the grace of God. No man can recognize the only true God without the grace of God. How dare any man think that simply by saying ‘God, please save me’, that he is automatically speaking to the true God. Is sincerity all the confirmation a man needs to show that he is addressing the true God, and not some counterfeit? Hardly. What of the person who knows absolutely nothing about God. Is that person calling out to the true God? What about the child of a Mormon, or J.W. or any Arminian gospel believing parent who calls out to ‘God’, are they calling out to the true God? Hardly. The apostle Paul states: “How then shall they call on Him in Whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in Him of Whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?” (Rom. 10:14). The process of salvation does not begin with man ignorantly calling out to ‘God’, and then God responding and completing the process. Salvation is God coming to a man by grace and saving him by grace. Without God revealing Himself to a man through His glorious Gospel, and granting him the gift of faith with which to exclusively believe the Gospel of salvation by grace alone, none can be saved. All that a man does is profitless without God. "...every man at his best state is altogether vanity" (Psa. 39:5). “Vanity of vanities, saith the Preacher, vanity of vanities; all is vanity” (Eccl. 1:2). Salvation is God coming to a man. No man can come to God, or even wants the true God, before God comes to the man first and saves him. “We love Him, because He first loved us” (1 Jn. 4:19). The very fact that God’s love comes first shows that salvation is only by grace, and not by works at all. Everything a saved man is, everything that a saved man has, is attributable solely to God. Nothing man can do inspires God to save him (see Jn. 6:63; Heb. 11:6). God is gracious and merciful because He is willing to be gracious and merciful, not because anyone deserves God to be gracious and merciful to them. Man cannot make the first move, or even come anywhere near making the first move toward the true God, because the only true God comes to His people first. “How then shall they call on Him in Whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in Him of Whom they have not heard?” (Rom. 10:14). How can anyone be certain they are speaking to my friend Peter, simply based on the fact the person they are talking with is also named Peter? How can they know my friend unless I provide them with specifics concerning him. How can anyone be ‘praying’ to the only true God when what they believe about God does not match with what God says about Himself? God is not waiting on men to call out to Him, He is searching and finding His sheep and saving them. How does a man believe? By grace through the gift of faith. The just shall live by what God has given them (see Rom. 1:16,17; Gal. 3:11; Heb. 10:38). The only way a man can believe is if God makes him a believer. The only ones who call out to, and pray, to the only true God are those whom He has saved by grace alone. As long as salvation is all of grace, all the glory for it will belong to God alone.
With God there is hope, a sure hope! Without God there is absolutely, and just as surely, no hope. How can a man who is without God, and, therefore, without any hope, possibly be calling out to the true God? How can the lost, blind, dead religious man possibly be calling out to the true God. God does not merely make the first move in salvation, HE MAKES EVERY MOVE! God makes alive, God saves, God gives the gift of faith by grace so a man will believe and trust only in Him, only in grace. God does not save the worthy, but only the unworthy. Only with and by God can a man be saved! So, if man on his own is without hope, how can he possibly attain to salvation? If man could do something to prompt God to save him then he would not be without hope. If a man must make the first move then he would not be without hope. In fact, the roles would be reversed, and it would be God Who would have no hope of saving anyone unless a man consented to receive Him. It would be a case of God loving a man because the man loved Him first. If man can perform a work, if salvation comes only after a man has made a decision, then it is God Who is without hope. The reality, however, is the hopeless have no life. The spiritually dead have no life, and, therefore, no hope. God is the Hope-Giver! God is the Hope of His people who are the ones He has chosen and made alive purely by His grace. They are the ones who could never have chosen Him. They are the ones who could never have come to Him. They are the ones who could never have believed in Him unless God by grace gave them the gift of faith with which to believe. Salvation by works is a slander, it is a blasphemy against the only true God Who mercifully, graciously saves His people from their hopeless, lifeless, condition. Scripture makes it perfectly clear: "There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God" (Rom. 3:11). How can a person in such a state ever conceivably come to the true and only God? Man in his natural sinful state simply wants nothing to do with the only true God, indeed, he is at enmity against Him, he is dead in sins and dead to Him. How could man ever be responsible for any part of salvation when he is a creature so plagued with sin, so devastated by his sinful nature, he cannot know God, and, therefore, does not even seek the true and only God?
Man, by nature, cannot see God for religion. HOW CAN MAN DO ANYTHING WHEN HE IS WITHOUT HOPE! What is there for a lifeless, hopeless man to do? Religions the world over cannot teach the death of mankind in sins, otherwise, they would have to teach grace ALONE AS THAT WHICH SAVES. They would have to teach that a man’s only hope is the grace, mercy and compassion of God. Thus the teaching that says man is not dead in sins is always accompanied by the lie that man can do in order to get saved. Religion binds a man to it, whereas, true Christianity frees a man from works, teaching him that salvation is only by grace, that salvation is only by God, not man. Only true Christianity teaches that man is dead in sins, and that salvation can only take place if the grace of God is present. It is important to note that God is not to blame for man’s spiritually dead state, but it is man alone who must take the blame and reap the consequences if God is not merciful to him. Grace is undeserved, but the Wrath of God is very much deserved by man. How can any man choose that which he does not seek? And in light of this, how could any man seriously claim that he ever wanted, let alone chose the true God? There is no salvation without God, therefore, all the glory for salvation must belong to God. There is no salvation whatsoever by adding anything done by anyone to what God alone has done. God does not need any help from a man dead in sins whom He has chosen to save. God saves by what He does, not by what a man does: “…by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the GIFT of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast” (Eph. 2:8,9). Salvation is conditioned on the will of God not the will of man. Salvation is conditioned on the grace of God, and not any work of man’s, therefore, it is only conditioned on what God alone has done, and so, never upon what any man must do. “So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy” (Rom. 9:16). Salvation is totally reliant upon God, not man. God has done it all, and any gospel that conditions any part of salvation on what a man must do is a gospel that does not give all the glory for salvation to God, but is a perverted message designed to exalt man. It is a message which has not come from God, but from the sin-soaked imagination of man. Anyone who believes that salvation is in any way of works simply does not believe that salvation is only by the GIFT of GOD! Anyone believing they were saved when they adhered to a gospel that conditioned salvation, to any degree, upon themselves, regardless of what they now claim to believe, is as lost as they can be. Only one Gospel saves. Belief in any other gospel reveals one’s accursed state, not a saved one (see Gal. 1:8,9 cf. 2 Cor. 11:3,4). Whoever obstinately insists they were saved while they believed a false gospel, is still dead in their sins. Anyone's claim to believe in the Gospel of salvation by grace alone is proven to be a delusion if the person is convinced they were saved while they believed in any other gospel. Any conviction such a person has that they are saved, is nothing but a satanic deception that has fastened its tentacles around that person's mind. The only thing that can free them from such a deception is the Sovereign Grace of God that forever liberates a person from every religious conviction that contradicts it (see Gal. 1:8,9).
To God be the glory, great things HE has done. True Christians praise God, not for that which He has enabled them to do, but for that which HE, alone, has done. They do not join with the Pharisee saying, ‘Thank you God that I…’ (see Lk. 18:11), but, ‘Thank you God that YOU…’ They highlight God and what God has done, not what they themselves have done: “…I will declare what He hath done for my soul” (Psa. 66:16). They speak about God, and not themselves. The emphasis, the focus, is all, and always, on God, for it is God Who makes the saved man to differ from the lost. GOD IS THE GOOD NEWS!! He is the Saviour, He is the Redeemer, He is the Light, He is the Hope, He is the Provider, He is the Justifier and He saves His people by grace alone. God justifies a man by freely imputing to him the very Righteousness of His Son the Lord Jesus Christ—the only Righteousness which saves: “Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth Righteousness without works, Saying, Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered. Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin” (Rom. 4:6-8). Clearly, the Righteousness which saves is not achieved by works, but is imputed without any works being done. The Righteousness which saves is imputed, it is charged to a man. It is not something which a man can gain by will or effort. Righteousness comes by God’s will and grace. The Righteousness which saves is not a man’s own righteousness, but the Righteousness of Jesus Christ imputed by grace. It is Christ’s Righteousness upon which salvation is conditioned, it is revealed only in the Gospel, and it is only given by grace (see Rom. 1:16,17). A man is saved by grace through faith in Christ’s Righteousness, and a man can only remain saved by the grace that has charged him with that Righteousness. So that which justifies us before God is of Him and not us, therefore, it is by what God has done, not by anything a man does. It is by grace through faith, not works. Salvation is by grace through the gift of faith that believes in God’s Righteousness alone. No saved person strives to attain salvation by attempting to establish a righteousness of their own. God rightly gets all the glory for all of salvation, for salvation is all by His grace, and not by any man’s works. The Righteousness which saves is God’s Righteousness. God’s Righteousness is charged to a man by grace. It does not come because of anything done by man, for God’s Righteousness is without the works of man. Salvation requires perfect Righteousness, and this perfect Righteousness has already been achieved by the only one who could have achieved it, the only one who DID achieve it: the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
A man trying to establish his own righteousness—a reason for God to save him—is a spiritually dead man lost in his spiritually dead dreams. The entire concept of a man doing before God can save him, or, so that he can be saved, is a fantasy, a complete nonsense when seen in the Light of God’s truth which states that a saved man’s Righteousness is of God. God clothes His people with what He has done. “I will greatly rejoice in the Lord, my soul shall be joyful in my God; FOR HE hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, HE hath covered me with the Robe of Righteousness…” (Isa. 61:10 cf. Gen. 3:21; Zech. 3:4). God does not save His people based on anything they have done, otherwise salvation would not be by grace. Salvation by grace is salvation without works. How can salvation be by grace and works when the Righteousness a man is saved by is God’s Righteousness and not his own!! “…their Righteousness is of Me, saith the Lord” (Isa. 54:17). “It is called ‘their Righteousness’. Though it is not theirs originally or subjectively, it is theirs really. It is theirs by the free gift of God.” ‘Salvation’ by works is salvation without grace. Salvation by grace is salvation without works. The salvation of God’s people is not by anything which they have done, for the ground of it is the Righteousness of Christ imputed by grace alone. Salvation is not by one’s own personal righteousness achieved by works, but by Christ’s Righteousness given by grace. Salvation is only accessible to grace. Salvation is not of ourselves, it is not by anything we do, but solely by what God has done. Salvation by grace is a gifted salvation. It is not a salvation by works, but only by grace. Salvation by grace is a salvation of which no man can boast. A man who is not adorned with the Robe of Christ’s Righteousness is a man who is not saved. A man’s best is vanity; a man’s righteousnesses are as filthy rags wholly unacceptable to God Who saves only by HIS Righteousness: “…their Righteousness is of Me, saith the Lord” (Isa. 54:17 cf. Jer. 23:6). “…that Righteousness which is imputed to them, and by which they are justified, is from the Lord; by which they are secured from all the charges of law and justice, and, from all the accusations of men and devils, and which will answer for them in a time to come, and acquit them at the bar of God before men and angels (cf. Rom. 8:33,34).” True Christians praise God for what His Son has done for them which they could never have done for themselves. Their praise is toward God for what His Son, as their Substitute, has done on behalf of all His people. “Christ is a Substitute for everything, but nothing is a substitute for Christ.” Salvation is by Christ’s Righteousness, not ours. Salvation is by God’s grace not our works. God has substituted His Righteousness for His people’s filthy rags, and His grace for their works (see Isa. 61:3). That is how God saves all His people from their sins, not by anything they do, but only by all that He has done. What God requires from His people, the Lord Jesus Christ has provided for His people. All the glory for salvation from beginning to end belongs to God, and He shares this glory with no man, obviously because no man has done anything to get himself saved nor that which has in any way aided in his salvation. “…who hath first given to Him, and it shall be recompensed unto him again? For of Him, and through Him, and to Him, are all things: to Whom be glory for ever. Amen” (Rom. 11:35,36). “And after these things I heard a great voice of much people in Heaven, saying, Alleluia; Salvation, and glory, and honour, and power, unto the Lord our God” (Rev. 19:1).
I doubt whether there is any man who would dare say, in so many words, that even some of the glory for salvation belongs to man. Even those who insist that the final decision for salvation belongs to man, without which he remains lost, would not directly claim any glory for themselves, but to the grace of God. However, the inescapable problem they have is in making God’s plan of salvation ultimately hinge on a man’s free will decision, or a man obeying in order to remain saved, they have rejected God's Gospel of salvation by grace alone. Everyone who adheres to these deadly errors is in reality exalting themselves and not God. Thanking God for what you have done is boasting in yourself, it is exalting yourself (see the article ‘The Pharisee and the Publican’ at godsonlygospel.com). The moment you include the word ‘I’ when speaking about salvation you immediately shift the focus from God to yourself. Thanking God that ‘I’, is exalting yourself. Salvation is all about God and what He has done, not what you have done. It is HIS Love, HIS will, HIS purpose, HIS Grace, HIS Mercy, HIS goodness, HIS Forgiveness, HIS Son, HIS Sacrifice, HIS Blood, HIS Obedience, HIS Death, HIS Righteousness that has saved His people from their sins. The saved person only exists by grace. He is a new creature in Christ by grace. Just as with the beneficiary of a last will and testament, the truly saved man is an eternal beneficiary of God’s Will for him, and he is forever grateful and thankful to God and what He has done knowing that he, the man, has never and could never have done anything to make himself saveable, or get himself saved, or keep himself saved. A person does not become a beneficiary of their father’s will by anything they have done, but only because they are their father’s child. No human being ever had anything to do with being the child of their biological father. So too, no saved human being ever had anything to do with their being made children of their spiritual Father.
The only faith that pleases God comes from Him and is given to His elect when He saves them by grace. Salvation is all of God, therefore, no part of it is conditioned on man, and, consequently, no part of the glory for salvation can rightly be assigned to man, for there is nothing he can do in order to get himself saved or keep himself in a saved state. Yes, he must believe, but again, this believing can only come when God, by saving grace alone, grants His gift of faith, by which a man exclusively believes and holds dear God’s one and only Gospel. "But I am like a green olive tree in the house of God: I trust in the mercy of God for ever and ever. I will praise Thee for ever, BECAUSE THOU HAST DONE IT: and I will wait on Thy name; for it is good before Thy saints" (Psa. 52:8,9). "I will greatly rejoice in the Lord, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for He hath clothed me with the garment of salvation, He hath covered me with the robe of Righteousness..." (Isa. 61:10). God doing for His people is grace. "But I have trusted in THY mercy; my heart shall rejoice in THY salvation" (Psa. 13:5). Salvation is a merciful act. Anything in a man that is for God is given to him by God. Salvation is not something man is recompensed with by God. Salvation is not a reward for anything a man has done, but is a gift based on what God has chosen to do: show grace and mercy and goodness to him. There is nothing a man can claim to have done, or that he must do, that is not a gift given to him (see 1 Cor. 4:7). God does not give the gift of enablement so that a person can participate in their own salvation, for the gift which God gives IS salvation. The Word of God says: “By grace are ye saved”, not by grace you are enabled to do that which is necessary before God can save you. Salvation is by grace through faith, not works. Salvation is not a collaborative effort between God’s grace and a man’s works, but of God’s grace and God’s gift of faith. Without God man can do nothing. With God a man needs do nothing, for he is saved by grace alone.
Without Holiness and Righteousness no man can see God (see Heb. 12:14). Obviously a Righteous state before God cannot be attained by the will, or works of flesh and blood, but only by way of a man being blessed of God by being born again according to the will and purpose of God. How is a man born again? How does a man become a new creature in Christ? BY GOD’S WORKMANSHIP! The Christian is a God-made man, not a self-made man. Not by a man’s will, but only by God’s will in full accord with His grace alone. Not by a man’s works, but only by God’s Work: Grace. “It is interesting that while most professing Christians know that they are not saved by works, when pressed they will nevertheless point to their works as proof that they are indeed following the Lord.” “Of His own will begat He us with the Word of truth…” (Jas. 1:18). “…by grace are ye saved…” (Eph. 2:8). The same is true concerning loving God. No man can love God without God’s loving the man first. The Christian is created by God’s craftsmanship according to God’s will by means of God’s grace. The Christian is a work of God. The Christian is God’s masterpiece. “For we are HIS workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them” (Eph. 2:10 cf. 1 Cor. 3:9). Not that everyone should walk in them, but that we, the saints of God, the very workmanship of God, should walk in them. The Christian is made by God, the new creature is God’s workmanship. It is God Who gives birth to His people. “Not as men only, but as Christians; not as creatures merely, but as new creatures; the work of grace upon the soul seems chiefly designed, which like a poem, as the word may be rendered, is a very curious work; the king's daughter is all glorious within, for this is an internal work, and is a good and excellent one; it is not indeed perfected at once, but is gradually carried on, till the finishing stroke is given to it by that hand which begun it; the author of it is God, it is not man's work; nor is it the work of ministers, no, nor of angels, but it is God's work: sometimes it is ascribed to the Spirit, Who regenerates and sanctifies; and sometimes to the Son of God, Who quickens whom He will; and sometimes to the Father, Who reveals His Son, and draws men to Him, and Who seems to be meant here: the subjects of this Divine operation, are the persons described in Ephesians 2:1-3 and include both Jews and Gentiles; and express the distinguishing grace of God, that they and not others, and who were by nature children of Wrath as others, should be His workmanship: and this is mentioned to show, that salvation cannot be by any works of men, since all their works are either wrought for them, or in them, by God; SALVATION IS A WORK WROUGHT FOR THEM WITHOUT THEM; and sanctification is a work wrought in them by God, of His good pleasure; and all their good works are fruits of His grace…” You cannot legitimately attribute the genuine salvation of a man to his works, for salvation is a fruit of grace, it could never have come without the grace that saves a chosen sinner.
The Christian is a God-made man, not a self-made man. He is made alive by God, he is born again by God, he is a new creature created in Christ all because of God, all because of the grace of God. A man is saved, not because he was a doer, but because he is a receiver, however, the reception of grace through faith does not make salvation happen. Grace is what makes salvation happen, not works. Salvation happens because of a gift, not works. Salvation happens because of the One giving it, not because of the one receiving it. Receiving is not a work, it is a blessing. Salvation is by what God does, not by anything a man does. All the religions of the world teach that either getting saved, and/or remaining saved, is conditioned on works, on what you do. They say, ‘God is ready to save you after you have done this, or that.’ Religion always “emphasizes meritorious works as part of their salvation (teachings)”. The false saviour of religion only makes ‘salvation’ possible. The true Saviour of God’s Gospel MAKES SALVATION HAPPEN!! The true Saviour, Jesus Christ, makes salvation happen because salvation is due to His will and grace, it is not conditioned in any way to any degree on a man’s will and works. “The Bible is clear that Christians are saved by grace through faith alone.” Not a natural man’s faith, but God-given faith. “In that regard it is unique, for the religions of the world, all have some form of works system in order to gain right standing before their god. All the religions of the world dictate one must act a certain way, or do certain things, or commit more good acts than bad acts in order to earn the favor of their deity. True Christianity stands alone as a belief system which bases salvation on grace alone without any semblance of works.” Christianity stands out from the religions of the world because it is not a religion of the world at all, but a Holy Faith come down from the only true God. Paul the apostle did not learn the Gospel of grace from men, but received it by revelation from God Himself. The only gospels which men have, by nature, are gospels of works, or hybrid gospels made up of perverted versions of grace, and works. “But I certify you, brethren, that the Gospel which was preached of me is not after man. For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ” (Gal. 1:11,12 cf. Jn. 7:16; Eph. 3:1-3). Young’s Literal Translation has it, “And I make known to you, brethren, the good news that were proclaimed by me, that it is not according to man”.
The only Gospel which comes by revelation of Jesus Christ is the Gospel of salvation by grace alone. The gospels of works come only from man. Works are a man’s way; grace alone is God’s only Way. The gospels which teach salvation by grace and works come only from man. The apostle Paul based salvation on the Gospel of Christ alone, therefore, by grace alone. If any man preached/believed a gospel which was not the Gospel of God, Paul immediately declared that person “accursed”. Paul not only preached the Gospel of grace alone, he JUDGED saved and lost by the Gospel of grace alone. “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. As 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” (Gal. 1:8,9). From this we see clearly that God has only one Gospel. The only logical, Biblical, conclusion that can be drawn from Paul’s proclamation is that God has only one Gospel, therefore, God has only one way He saves His people from their sins. Jesus Christ is the only Way, therefore, salvation can only be conditioned on Him, only on grace. SALVATION IS ONLY BY THE SUBSTITUTE—JESUS—THEREFORE, SALVATION CAN ONLY BE BY GRACE ALONE. Grace is God’s substitute for a man’s works. Salvation is by substitution: Christ’s Righteousness for His people’s sins. Christ not only takes His people’s worst, He takes their best and gives them His perfect Righteousness. The gospels of religion are man’s way to salvation, all include works: man must do or he cannot be saved. God’s Gospel is the only Gospel which teaches salvation by grace alone. Therefore, every gospel which teaches that salvation can only come with the assistance, the obedience of man, is anti-grace. It is a counterfeit gospel which no one can be saved by. Every gospel that includes works as a condition for salvation is NOT God’s Gospel. Every gospel which bases salvation on works, or on a combination of grace and works, cannot save. Those who teach such gospels, and all those who believe such gospels, are accursed.
The only thing that makes God’s Gospel so unique is the fact that salvation is by grace ALONE. There are many false gospels which include a form of grace in their teaching, however, the grace they speak of is always nullified by their works. You cannot base salvation on that which is free, whilst conditioning it on that which you must do. So in reality there really is no such thing as a false gospel of grace and works, but only of works. All false gospels teach man as the ultimate savior. It is the Gospel of grace ALONE that every false religious teaching out there is committed against! Every gospel out there that teaches salvation in any other way but by grace ALONE through faith ALONE in the Righteousness of Christ ALONE, is a false gospel derived from men. Such gospels have never, nor will they ever, save anyone from their sins. Those who believe in false gospels which condition salvation on works will die in their sins. The Gospel of grace alone is the only one that differs from every gospel in the universe. It is not simply grace, but GRACE ALONE which makes the Gospel of God stand out from the false gospels of men. Importantly, the apostle did not take into account the sincerity of those who believed in false gospels, he did not take into account their kind natures and charitableness, etc., as being in any way evidence of a salvation present despite their believing a false gospel. PAUL, INSPIRED BY THE HOLY GHOST, DECLARED EVERYONE ON THE PLANET LOST—ACCURSED OF GOD—IF THEY DID NOT EXCLUSIVELY BELIEVE IN THE GOSPEL OF GOD WHICH SAYS A MAN IS SAVED BY GRACE ALONE THROUGH FAITH ALONE! Saved by grace alone through faith alone is not being saved by works at all, it is not being saved by anything you do, but only by that which God has done. This is the only Gospel which gives God all the glory, for it is HIS ONLY GOSPEL!
When Peter stated that Jesus was indeed the Messiah, The Lord replied “…Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but My Father which is in Heaven” (Matt. 15:17). Look at all the ‘ways to salvation’ that are taught by man in his wide ranging collection of religions, and you will soon notice a common thread running through each and every one of them: the lie that man must do—exposing the even bigger lie that man can do—or he will die. The fact of the matter is that man is ALREADY dead. God warned/promised Adam that in the day he ate of the forbidden fruit he would surely die (see Gen. 2:17), and die he surely did. Death already resides in man, and nothing he can do can ever change that Biblical reality. The wages of sin is spiritual and physical death. The gospels of the world say that man can do something to get saved, and/or at least assist, or cooperate in his salvation. These are the gospels which are all at loggerheads with God’s unique Gospel, for God’s Gospel is about the Righteousness of Christ Jesus the Lord, while man’s gospels are concerned with and advocate the righteousness of man. True Christianity is the only faith which shares no commonality at all with man-made religion in that it teaches there is nothing a man can do to appease God, but that he must rely totally upon the Righteousness, the obedience, of Another: Jesus Christ. This reliance, or complete trust, is only possible if it is given to a person by God. The Gospel of true Christianity bases salvation not on man, but completely upon the Deity alone. It is a 100% gift from God, and, therefore, by His will, and no other’s. Salvation by grace alone is salvation by God’s will. Salvation by grace alone is salvation by God alone. Salvation by grace alone is salvation by the Righteousness of God alone. No part of salvation can be earned by man. It is an utterly futile exercise to attempt to earn what can only be given, what can only come by Another’s will.
Those who are chosen by God are saved so that they will obey, so that they will believe, not because they have obeyed, or because they have believed. God’s people are “Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience…Who by Him do believe in God…” (1 Pet. 1:2, 21); they “…are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works” (Eph. 2:10). Salvation does not come in response to a man’s act or will, but only according to God’s grace and will. The elect of God are chosen TO salvation, they are chosen TO be saved, chosen TO believe, chosen TO perform good works, etc. “Ye are My witnesses, saith the LORD, and My servant whom I have chosen: that ye may know and believe Me, and understand that I am He…” (Isa. 43:10); “…God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth” (2 Thess. 2:13). Clearly one is chosen to believe, because one is chosen, or has been appointed to salvation. Salvation is “An eternal appointment of persons to grace and glory: and this is an act of God the Father, in Christ, from eternity; and which arises from His Sovereign good will and pleasure, and is an instance of His free grace and favour, for the glorifying of Himself; and is irrespective of the faith, holiness, and good works of men; all which are the fruits and effects, and not the motives, conditions, or causes of electing grace. This act is the leading one to all other blessings of grace, as justification, adoption, calling, and glorification, and is certain and immutable in itself, and in its effects.” Christians are chosen to believe not because they have believed. That is grace. If one was chosen because they believed, that would be salvation by works. The Christian is chosen by grace not according to works. Grace is the very antithesis of works, therefore, none can be saved by what they do, but only by what God has done, hence the Bible rule: “…by grace are ye saved through faith…not of yourselves…not of works…” (Eph. 2:8,9 cf. Rom. 5:2; Gal. 6:14-16). This completely does away with the silly and quite blasphemous notion that grace enables a man to do what must be done before a man can be saved. But, saved by what exactly? Saved by works, or saved by grace? Obviously what the person has allegedly been enabled to do is that which this fake salvation is dependent on, for without this act being done, no one can be saved. Such gospels do not teach true grace, but a powerless grace belonging to an impotent god that cannot save until after a person has met a condition. This is NOT the way the only true God saves! The fact that a man is saved by grace and nothing else, shows that nothing else can save, or be a part of that salvation process from beginning to final glory. Anything done is always the result of grace having saved, not enabling one to get saved. That which is done is always the fruit of salvation and never the tree. Anything done is always and only the fruit of grace. Grace produces the fruit. The fruit can only come as a result of grace, as a result of a man being saved, and never that which makes him saved, or that which comes before a man is saved. It is not the fruit that determines the type of tree, but always the type of tree that determines the fruit it will bear. The tree comes before the fruit just as grace always comes before fruit. This is because the tree and the grace of God are what produce the fruit. Salvation is “…not of yourselves…not of works…” (Eph. 2:8).
Before salvation there is only barrenness, and dead works. It is only after salvation by grace alone that the genuine good works begin. By grace comes the fruit. The orange comes because of the tree, the fruit of salvation comes because of grace. There is nothing in Ephesians 2:8 & 9 which even remotely suggests that salvation comes by any other way than by grace, or out of any collaboration between God and any other thing, or with any other being. It is by the grace of God alone that one is saved, therefore, ‘By GOD alone are ye saved’. The seriousness of the flawed gospels which include men’s works as an essential to salvation should not be underestimated. The gravity of the situation is highlighted by Paul in his Letter to the Galatians: “I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if Righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain” (Gal. 2:21). “…if there had been a law given which could have given life, verily Righteousness should have been by the law” (Gal. 3:21), BUT THERE IS NO LAW THAT CAN GIVE LIFE, and so, Righteousness CANNOT be of the law, but only of grace. “But the Scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe” (Gal. 3:22). “By the ‘promise’ is intended, the promise of life and salvation, and particularly of a justifying righteousness; which is given, not merited; righteousness is a gift, a gift of grace, a free gift, and so is eternal life; salvation in all its parts is of free grace; Christ is a free gift, and so are all things along with Him; yea, faith itself, by which they are received, it is not of ourselves, it is the gift of God; Christ is the author and finisher, as well as the object of it; and therefore here called ‘the faith of Jesus Christ’: and such that have it, to them the promise, or the things promised, righteousness and life are given, which the law could not give; not to them that work, but to them that believe: thus the law is so far from being against the promises of God, that it is subservient to them; for though the law has no tendency in itself to bring persons to Christ, and to believe in Him for righteousness, yet this concluding men under sin, showing them their desperate, and hopeless, and helpless condition, the Spirit of God takes occasion from hence to reveal Christ unto them, and to make them as perishing creatures to venture on Him, and lay hold on the hope set before them in the Gospel; and so they come to enjoy the grand promise of it, even life and salvation by Christ.” “…the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith” (Gal. 3:24), not works.