Repentance in Salvation by Ron Shea – Pt. 8

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Repentance – Part 8 by Ron Shea

So we will not make this post terribly long, we will finish up all the incidents of repentance in the book of Matthew in Part 8, Part 9 will start with Mark. Please see Part 7 if you have not read, or go back to Part 1 and start from there if you have not been following along.

VERSE: Matthew 12:41


41    The men of Nineveh shall rise in judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: because they repented at the preaching of Jonas; and, behold, a greater than Jonas is here.

Subject Repenting, not repenting, etc.:  The men of Nineveh

Object of that repentance:  None stated by Matthew

Consequence:  None stated by Matthew. The passage, however, is presumptively soteriological. (Holly’s comment: I believe it is possible, but the Ninevites were being saved from their nation being destroyed. I believe the point being made is they listened whereas these people were not.)

The Object and Consequence of the Ninevites repentance in Matthew:    Although both the object of the Ninevites’ repentance, and the consequence of their repentance, are both discussed in the Book of Jonah, neither the object of the Ninevites’ repentance, nor the consequence of their repentance, are recorded in the Gospel of Matthew. The reason for Matthew’s silence (and Jesus apparent silence) on these facts is simple: they were not relevant to the point Jesus was making (Holly’s comment: or the Jews were simply knowledgeable already about this Scripture).

The essential feature of Jesus’ comparison of his generation to Nineveh was that, upon hearing a prophet of God, the men of Nineveh repented and believed the message of God’s messenger.  In Jonah 3:5 we read: “So the people of Nineveh believed God.”  Jesus is not focusing on the object of the Ninevites’ repentance, but on the fact that they repented at the preaching of a simple prophet. Yet when God himself came down to earth in the flesh, and did far greater works than Jonah, His own generation rejected him. Jesus is making an argumentum a fortiori (if the lesser is true, how much more is the greater true). Many regard the Ninevites as wicked, but they responded to the preaching of a simple prophet.  Yet when Emmanuel, God in the flesh came to proclaim the good news, His own generation rejected Him, and rejected His message.

Within the Book of Jonah, we learn that the men of Nineveh were called to repent of their evil and violence. (Jonah 3:9-10; 4:3, 8-10). They were known to skin their enemies alive in battle. As noted, the concept of “repenting of one’s sins” is not unbiblical. It is simply never stated as a requirement for receiving eternal life.  The consequence of their repentance was that Nineveh was spared God’s temporal judgment on their city when they received the message of the prophet, Jonah, and did as he instructed.  Sin is often the grounds for temporal judgment, both on nations (such as Nineveh, Sodom, Gomorah, etc.) and on people (e.g. Ananias and Saphira, Acts.) However, the fact that the men of Nineveh were called to repent of their wickedness by Jonah does not that mean that Jesus is calling for men to repent of their sins as a condition for salvation.

NOTE:  For those who are determined to interpret Jonah’s call for Nineveh to repent from their “wickedness” and “violence” as a requirement that Christians are to “repent of their sins to be saved,” in spite of the absence of any such words in Matthew 12:41, the reader should note Matthew 12:43-45 immediately following the discussion of Nineveh’s repentance!  They speak of the utter pointlessness of “turning from one’s sins.”

43        When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through dry places, seeking rest, and findeth none.

44        Then he saith, I will return into my house from whence I came out; and when he is come, he findeth it empty, swept, and garnished.

45        Then goeth he, and taketh with himself seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and they enter in and dwell there: and the last state of that man is worse than the first. Even so shall it be also unto this wicked generation.

This context hardly suggests that turning from sin is the means to eternal redemption.

john 6-47

VERSE: Matthew 21:29


28        But what think ye? A certain man had two sons; and he came to the first, and said, Son, go work to day in my vineyard.

29        He answered and said, I will not: but afterward he repented, and went.

30        And he came to the second, and said likewise. And he answered and said, I go, sir: and went not.

31        Whether of them twain did the will of his father? They say unto him, The first. Jesus saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That the publicans and the harlots go into the kingdom of God before you.

32        For John came unto you in the way of righteousness, and ye believed him not: but the publicans and the harlots believed him: and ye, when ye had seen it, repented not afterward, that ye might believe him.

Subject Repenting, not repenting, etc.:  In the parable, the hypothetical son repents (changes his mind) and decides to work in the vineyard.  The counterpoint of the parable is the publicans (tax collectors) and harlots believed on Jesus, but the chief priests and elders (verse 23) repented not afterward (verse 32).

Object of that repentance:  The word “repent” is presented in apposition  to “believe.”  That is, they have identical meanings in this context.  The object of repentance is Jesus Christ.  John the Baptist taught the way of righteousness, and that way is the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world.  (John 1:29).  The publicans and harlotsbelieved John, verse 32.  The term “belief” is equivalent to repentance in verse 32.  They heard John testify of Christ, and believed him.  The Son who professed obedience, but would not honor the will of his father is like the chief priests and elders (verse 23.)  They professed religion and devotion to the Jewish Scriptures, but when Messiah, about whom all the Scriptures testified, they “repented not afterward, that [they] might believe.”

In the above passage, repentance of the son (vs. 29) is presented in apposition to the publicans and harlots believing John’s testimony of Jesus Christ.  And the chief priests and elders lack of repentance is equivalent to their refusal to believe John’s testimony of Jesus Christ.

Consequence of lack of repentance:  The publicans and the harlots will go into the kingdom of God before you.  Repentance here is transparently related to eternal salvation.  In the Greek text, the concept of “inheriting” the kingdom (“kleronomeo”) is related to the privilege of ruling and reigning with Christ, and is a reward for holy living and faithfulness to Christ.  However, entrance into the kingdom of God is not a reward for righteous living.  It is a gift to the guilty who believe on Jesus Christ for their salvation.  There is, perhaps, no passage of Scripture that more plainly states that saving repentance is simply to believe on Jesus Christ.

VERSE: Matthew 27:3


3   Then Judas, which had betrayed him, when he saw that he was condemned, repented himself, and brought again the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and elders,

4   Saying, I have sinned in that I have betrayed the innocent blood.  And  they said, What is that to us? see thou to that.

5   And he cast down the pieces of silver in the temple, and departed, and  went and hanged himself.

Subject Repenting:    Judas

Object of that repentance:    The condemnation of Jesus.  Judas had apparently turned Jesus over to the Roman officials in hopes of making some money, but did not expect that they would kill Jesus.  When he saw how far out of control the situation had gotten, he regretted what he had done.  “When he [Judas] saw that He [Jesus] was condemned, repented himself.”

Consequence of lack of repentance:    He threw the thirty pieces of silver on the floor of the temple, and went out and hanged himself.

Note:  The word used for repent, herein, is “metamelomai,” which means, “to regret” or “to care afterward.”  Judas was deeply grieved over his sin!  “I have sinned in that I have betrayed innocent blood.” And he had killed a friend.  He grief was so profound that he went out and killed himself.”  But believing that Jesus is a good man, and an innocent man, is not saving faith. And this repentance did not save Judas.  It was not because the result of his betrayal was the crucifixion of Jesus.  He clearly never intended or expected that his actions would be to send Jesus to the cross.  He was condemned because his act of betrayal showed that he never believed in Jesus.  Jesus was a good man to Judas.  But He was not the Son of God to Judas.  His refusal to believe was particularly dastardly because, as one of the twelve, he had been with Jesus for the three years that Jesus had showed Himself by many mighty works to be the Son of God.  Jesus taught that those cities which witnessed his mighty works and refused to believe were subject to the greater condemnation.  In view of this, Judas, who lived with Jesus for three years, but still would not believe, has secured for him a terrible condemnation.

This passage in Matthew should highlight the absurdity of teaching that remorse or otherwise “repenting of one’s sins” is somehow connected to eternal salvation.  It clearly did nothing for the salvation of Judas.  Jesus said, ” The Son of man goeth as it is written of him: but woe unto that man by whom the Son of man is betrayed! it had been good for that man if he had not been born.”  Matthew 26:24.  One need not be a Ph.D. in Greek to realize that, whatever that means, it isn’t good.

Part 9

About The Author

Ron Shea attended Villanova University on a four year scholarship from the United States Navy. After earning a Bachelor of Electrical engineering, he served four years as a naval officer. He then attended Dallas Theological Seminary where he majored in New Testament Literature and Exegesis, translating the entire New Testament from the original Greek language. He graduated with honors from the four-year Master of Theology program. He went on to earn a Doctor of Jurisprudence from the University of California, Hastings College of Law, where he earned awards in Admiralty, Jurisprudence, and Oral Argument.  He has pastored churches in New Orleans and San Francisco, and is the founder and president of Clear Gospel Crusade.

Ronald Shea’s ministry, can be supported at this page.  We do not accept donations, but if you appreciate the years of work of faithfulness to God’s Scriptures, Mr. Shea’s ministry does and we support him.  He also has some good gospel booklets you can use as tracts.

He has downloadable gospel tracts in many languages.  Albanian, Arabic, Bulgarian, Burmese, Chinese – both simplified and traditional, English, French, Fulfude – Nigerian, German, Hindi, Igbo – Nigerian, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Lugandan (Uganda), Polish, Punjabi – Pakistani script, Romanian, Russian, Rwandan, Saraiki – Southern Punjab, Pakistan, Sindi – Pakistan, Spanish, Swahili, Tagalog – Filipino Islands, Tamil – India & Singapore, Ukrainian, Urdu – Pakistan, Vietnamese.


33 Responses to “Repentance in Salvation by Ron Shea – Pt. 8

  • Excellent article Holly!! Made this important point of needing to repent or not to be saved very very clear that it is not needed for salvation but need only to believe on the LORD Jesus and receive the grace of God by Faith

    • Dear Jackie, thank you for coming to read!

      Repentance FROM sin is not needed in order to be saved. All who have believed have repented (changed their mind about something in order to believe). Our hangup is we always saw the equation as this.

      Repent = repent from sin

      Once we understand repent/repentance means basically change mind, then this is a good series to show us what each separate citing of repentance means. I appreciate Ron’s thorough approach to this. Lots more coming 🙂

      In Christ’s love to you sister!

  • Sean Budde
    9 years ago

    Very good. Just recently, i posted in my blog, about what it means to “receive” Christ. The Bible indicates that to receive Christ is to believe His words. And the opposite of receiving Christ, is to reject Him, which is to receive not…believe not His words (John 12:47, 48). If follows that if one receives the gospel, believing in Christ freely for the gift of salvation will inexorably result. Tying repentance to not believing John’s testimony, is a good point by Ron Shea.

    This all comes down to the wisdom of God vs the wisdom of this world. The Bible indicates in 1 Corinthians 1:26, that not many wise, mighty, or noble are called. Such are too wise to receive Christ (believe His words and believe in Him, per God’s drawing) as a little child (little children will believe what is told to them). It doesn’t say none, but not many. And we know that preaching the gospel with the “wisdom of words” can make “the Cross of Christ” (which i take to mean the subject of that preaching) of “none effect”, as indicated in 1 Corinthians 1:17. So, i think that what is true for the preaching is also true for the receiving. Man’s wisdom is what keeps him from receiving the words of God’s wisdom. The hearer is to incline his ear to the gospel. In Isaiah 55:3, we see inclining the ear spoken of. God draws, and the hearer receives God’s words when he inclines his ear to the gospel of Christ and believes it. Only the truth can result in salvation. God’s word is truth. Man’s words that are in opposition to God’s word, can only result in false converts. The call is to take the water of life (Christ) freely (without price). We take…drink “the water of life” (Christ) when we believe in Him freely (without price) for salvation. How many pastors today, focus on the word “freely” in Revelation 22:17? No, the hearer shouldn’t believe so that he can have “the best of both worlds” (salvation and a life of sin), but if God is drawing him to Christ by seeing his sins and need for Christ, i don’t think he will be wanting a free ticket to sin at that moment of receiving Christ. Rather, i think the hearer comes to Christ, by faith, because he sees how ungodly he is and may even feel like the publican did, who seemed to be emotional when he “smote upon his breast” (KJV) and asked God to be merciful upon him, a sinner. When God spiritually draws the heart through the preaching of the gospel, what does the hearer feel about himself? The thief on the cross saw his own condemnation and saw Christ’s goodness. He simply asked the Lord to remember him when he would come into His kingdom (according to the KJV). Just putting this all out there for you to consider as i consider it also. May God bless you Holly. :o)

    • Those are some good insights Sean.

      After awhile watching these men, I wondered why men felt their own performance, their techno-worked films, their drama, their acting ability, was part of the gospel. I was praying about it, and it came to me through His Word, as simplicity — they did not believe in the power of the gospel. They felt the need to doctor it up with all sorts of their own wise words and gimmicks. I’m not condemning anyone for visually bringing a correct gospel to someone, but they were adding what one must do, what one must feel, etc.

      There are all sorts of responses to believing. Martha’s response in John 11 seemed rather matter-of-fact. Most of the disciples were very excited they had found the Christ. The Jews in Acts 2, were ‘cut to the heart’ by the Word of God Peter spoke (Heb 4:12) and their response was to ask what they should do, and we know they ‘gladly received His Word. But in Acts 5, they were ‘cut to the heart’ and turned around and responding by taking counsel to slay them. Interestingly in Acts 7 the men were also ‘cut to the heart’ by the Word of God spoken, and their responses was to stop their ears, rush Stephen, and stone him.

      We don’t know what one’s response will be, but the ‘proof’ of their salvation is whether they have believed God’s testimony of His Son. Because we can take God at His Word.

      I loved the inclining the ear comment, it’s a favorite of mine. Proverbs 22:17-21 is kind of one of those ‘life’ passages for me. The word for ‘bow’ also means incline.

        17 Bow down thine ear, and hear the words of the wise,
        and apply thine heart unto my knowledge.
        18 For it is a pleasant thing if thou keep them within thee;
        they shall withal be fitted in thy lips.
        19 That thy trust may be in the Lord,
        I have made known to thee this day, even to thee.
        20 Have not I written to thee excellent things
        in counsels and knowledge,
        21 that I might make thee know the certainty of the words of truth;
        that thou mightest answer the words of truth to them that send unto thee?

      • Holly, you are right – there are all kinds of responses from people who have received Christ as Savior. The Bible makes no statement regarding any disqualifying mindset.

        I think a lot of people get wrapped up in speculating what kind of mindset one should have, or shouldn’t have, in coming to Christ. Whether this is well-meaning, or simply just watered-down Lordship “salvation” (trying to create merit by motive), it is counterproductive. It can both keep people from understanding the simplicity of the gospel and it can cause introspective people to have assurance issues, because it turns their eyes away from Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, and back to themselves.

        Below is an excerpt from an article entitled “To Declare HIS Righteousness”, which I wrote earlier this year:

        The questions about how Christians should live are not relevant to an unbeliever. The questions about any expectation of commitment are not relevant to an unbeliever. Whether or not one wants to live the Christian life is not relevant to an unbeliever. Whether or not one wants to give up any sins is not relevant to an unbeliever.

        What is relevant is this:

        Is Jesus God in the flesh? Did He die for our sins (all of them, for everyone in the world – past, present, and future)? Did that include your sins – past, present, and future? Was He raised from the dead, proving that His payment was accepted?

        The “what if I?” questions need to be turned back and met with “what DID Jesus do?”

        • John,

          I am not sure if I was saved as a little girl, concerning some of the confusing messages, but I believe so and believe my childlike faith was tainted. Or if I was saved later, at a very low time in my life, I was kind of emotionless truthfully, so if one went by either of my two emotions, they may believe I was not saved. One was childlike simplicity and innocent acceptance, no dancing up and down in joy, just believed and wanted to be His. The second time I was emotionally bereft. So if emotions or responses proved something, I’d not be saved. So either likely wouldn’t be seen as the proper response by load-shippers.

          The only proof is seen in 1 John 5:9-13 and whether people can affirm to themselves in the sight of God, that they have believed this.

          Of course, People as believers should be encouraged to add to their faith (2 Pet 1:5-9), to maintain good works – we need constantly affirmed (Titus 3:8), to continue in His Word (John 8:31), to abide in the Lord and His love (John 15:7-10), to study with His approval (2 Tim 2:15), to prove all things (1 Thess 5:21), to choose the good part (Lk 10:38-42), to search the scriptures to see if things are so (Acts 17:11), to commend others to the Word of His grace (Acts 20:32), to meet with other like-minded believers whenever possible (Heb 5:25), to test the Spirits (1 John 4:1-3), to hide His Word in our heart so we won’t sin against Him (Ps 119:11), some of many things believers do as they learn to spend time with the Lord in prayer and in His Word.

          A non-believer is incapable of doing anything to please God. I know responses to the gospel were different all over the Word, but you know what’s funny? I’ve never seen someone say “If you don’t have a JOYFUL response, then you are likely not saved”. Because that’s the response most often recorded as far as I can tell.

          Amen – not what we have done, by feelings, word or deeds, but did we believe on what Jesus did on our behalf?

        • I’d like to share the link to that post, that is a good one John!

      • Sean Budde
        9 years ago

        Thanks great…i hadn’t seen that about the word “incline’ also meaning “bow”. Yes, “…apply thine heart unto my knowledge”. Understanding and the heart are related in the Bible, i noticed. And the devil takes the word from the heart (or out of?) the heart so that the hearer doesn’t understand in the heart (Luke 8:12). I don’t think Calvinists can explain why the devil would do that. I guess they think satan does that non-literally and non-directly by default as a natural result of the fall of man?

        Yes, i agree..inclining the ear is a very important subject, i think. Isaiah 55:1-3 is a key passage. To receive Christ is to believe His words. Inclining the ear is how His words are received into the heart. Just like believing on Christ, we take action to incline the ear…stretch forth the ear…listen to the words of God’s wisdom. Christ shined as the light on earth and He came unto those who did not receive Him. The light shined upon them, but they would not receive the light. And we see hardening involved. How the hardening plays out regarding those who choose to not receive Christ, i’m not sure.

        Nice chatting with you Holly. May God bless you and yours.

        • Yes vs. 13 answers vs. 12 well Sean, “Lest they should believe and be saved

          I don’t think on hardening regarding whether one has rejected Christ previously, because Paul is a good example of one who rejected the truth a multitude of times, and persecuted Jesus and His people.

          I know God is longsuffering so I think on Ecclesiastes 9:4, which basically says, while we are among the living, there is hope. Some are harder to reach it may seem, but I believe the Word has power, (Heb 4:12; Isaiah 55:10-11) along with the gospel (Rom 1:16-17; 1 Cor 1:17-18), and so I believe we just keep speaking His Word and gospel in sincerity when we can, to whomever we can, and we pray for another to water. For another laborer in the harvest. And we pray for all men knowing He desires all would be saved (1 Tim 2:1-6).

          In Christ, same to you Sean.

      • Sean Budde
        9 years ago

        Sorry, somehow i misread Luke 8:12. You quoted verse 12, actually. I have a different take on the parable of the seed and the sower. If you notice, the “thorny ground” never brought forth any fruit. The only ground that brought forth fruit was the “good ground”. I think this is a key point. Matthew 7:17, 18 indicates that a corrupt tree cannot bring forth good fruit. No fruit comes from a corrupt tree. Every good tree brings forth good fruit…but the fruit varies GREATLY (see Mark 4:8). God purges the fruit bearing branch so that it will bring forth more fruit. But the branch that did not bring forth any fruit, is taken away for the burning. Some born again believers may do a lot of good works, while others may not do much good works at all, and may live carnally. Even in a backslidden state, a believer is still a servant (slave) of righteousness and is no longer a servant (slave) of sin. He is set free from sin. Although he may choose to sin a lot, the world no longer has the grip of bondage on his heart that it did before salvation. Before salvation, he was a servant (slave) of sin. He may have been a very good person outwardly, but inwardly he was still a servant (slave) of sin. The same holds true in an opposite way, after salvation. The works can be an indicator, but not always. That’s my take on it. I think the fruit that wasn’t / was brought forth should be the focus when reading the parable of the seed and the sower. In John 15:2, Christ speaks of a branch in Him that doesn’t bring forth fruit. In Matthew 7:17, 18, Christ speaks of false prophets in sheep’s clothing…and He speaks of a “corrupt” (rotten tree) tree. Now does anyone believe that a dead branch or tree is in Christ? We see that He will say He never knew the false prophets. So, i see this all as not being truly in Christ. Only those who bring forth some fruit, even if the good works are readily apparent, are those who know Christ. But like i said, Mark 4:8 indicates that the fruit varies greatly.

        That’s my take on it anyway. I know you see saving faith in view, in Luke 8:13, right? My point is that the word did not take root (in the heart), so the faith was not based on receiving the word. The category where the word was understood, is Matthew 13:23:

        (Matthew 13:23) But he that received seed into the good ground is he that heareth the word, and understandeth [it]; which also beareth fruit, and bringeth forth, some an hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.

        In the parallel verse, we read:

        (Luke 8:15) But that on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep [it], and bring forth fruit with patience.

        “Understandeth”…”keep”…the word took root in the “good ground”. I’m making a blog post about this subject that i hope to complete soon. Anyway, maybe some of what i shared makes sense. Maybe share how you see these verses and i’ll read what you have to say about this parable. Nice chatting with you Holly. Have a nice Sunday.

        • Sean, I have seen this interpretation of the parable of the Sower (for example, from George Zeller, of Middletown Bible Church, who I do not recommend).

          For your interpretation to be correct, the word “believe”, used only to describe the second soil believers, must be discounted. It’s omission, in reference to soil 4, must be ignored in order for soil 4 to be saved. Conversely, the word “understand” must be assumed to not pertain to either soils 2 or 3, by omission.

          In other words, you are choosing to interpret “believe” to pertain to soils 2-4, while you are choosing to interpret “understand” to pertain only to soil 4. This is pretty selective.

          I think that soils 3 and 4 believed, even though the Bible does not expressly say so. I also think that soils 2 and 3 understood, even though the Bible does not expressly say so.

          Since the Bible teaches that belief in Christ is the sole condition for one to receive eternal life, I think we are on dangerous ground when we start to try to explain away how people who are said to have believed, didn’t end up with eternal life.

          After all, if “believe” does not mean “believe”, why would we expect anyone to “believe”?

          Regarding “fruit”, there is a range of meaning in scripture, depending on context.

          1. “Testimony” or “doctrine.” Example – Matthew 7:16-20

          2. Beneficial works for the glory of God – Example Luke 8:15

          3. Characteristics associated with walking in the Spirit. Example – Galatians 5:22-23.

          • Sean Budde
            9 years ago

            John, sorry for the delay in replying. I was going to post here, but then it became pretty detailed, so i decided to work on my latest blog post instead. In my blog i biblically show how the “stony places” in Matthew 13:5, 6 is associated with tares. Here’s a link to that study for you and Holly to check out. Holly, i hope my post is easy to read. This is part 1. I decided to post my study in 2 parts. Here’s the link:

            (administrator’s note: link removed)

            May God bless.

          • Sean, thanks all the same, but I will pass on reading any of your doctrine. I do not believe that you are sufficiently grounded in the doctrines of grace or assurance to be a sound teacher.

            The Bible says the people represented by soils 2-4 believed. That’s good enough for me.

            I wonder why it is so important for you to establish that those represented by soils 2 and 3 were not believers.

          • Sean Budde
            9 years ago

            John, because the Bible teaches it. It’s indisputable. When you put the pieces of the puzzle together there’s no denying it.

          • Sean, there is no “puzzle.”

            Jesus told the disciples what the meaning of the parable is, and it is recorded in God’s word so that it will not be puzzling to us. Jesus said soils 2-4 believed. Believe means believe means believe.

            Luke 8:13: They on the rock are they, which, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, which for a while believe, and in time of temptation fall away.

            It’s not a puzzle, except for people who make a puzzle out of it. For people who are trying to find the “missing link” between grace and Lordship “salvation”, easy passages can become hard.

            2 Peter 3:16: As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction.

            Sean, I would recommend two resources for you.

            The first is a good sermon on the parable of the Sower by pastor Tom Cucuzza called “Life Lessons from the Dirt”

            Tom’s analysis of this parable is both consistent with the doctrine of grace and has some practical applications as well.

            Following is an excerpt regarding soil number 2, as well as a link to the sermon:

            Now, some want to say that this person is lost. Those who believe in perseverance of the saints – which is Lordship “salvation” – say this person is lost. I vehemently disagree! That would make this works for salvation. Our final salvation was taken care of the moment we trusted Christ. It says that “they believed for a while.” If they believed for a moment they’re saved.


            The second is an article that helps clear up some of the misconceptions that some believers and religious non-believers alike have about “fruits.”


          • Sean Budde
            9 years ago

            John, did soils 2 and 3 bring forth fruit? After conversion, faith is a fruit of the Spirit. No fruit = no faith, hence the reason why soil 2 fell away. Soils 2 and 3 did not bring forth fruit. The soil has to be good and the seed has to take root for any fruit to be produced. It’s very plain.

          • Sean, I have to admire your consistency.

            After making an initial ingratiating and disarming complement to Holly more than eight months ago, you quickly followed up with your false perseverance of the saints doctrine.

            Holly kindly corrected you on it then, but to no avail.

            You are not here to learn Sean, you are here to preach!

            I will not be posting any of your errant doctrine again. By the way, I have removed all of the links, URLs, etc. that you have posted.

            I have one parting rhetorical question for you? How do you know what soil you are?

          • Sean, where are you getting this teaching? It’s very plain? What then is necessary in your opinion, believe + fruit in order to be saved? You’re going down a bad road here…

          • Amen John… If they believed for a moment they’re saved.

            In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise. Eph 1:13

          • The Bible teaches believe (upon the gospel) as the sole condition for salvation Sean, why would you try to complicate the simplicity that is in Christ? (2 Cor 11:3-4) You are thinking of someone beyond what is written in His Word (1 Cor 4:6). Stay away from backdoor lordship salvation teachers like Zeller, or you’ll end up inspecting your own fruit, and also you’ll end up making young ones stumble. It’s something very important for you to consider.

          • God is not the author of confusion. He does not give us a ‘puzzle’ to somehow sort it out. He teaches us, He reveals it to babes. There is simplicity in Christ, and I’m afraid the enemy has corrupted your mind from it. I do pray you might seek God on this, not other teachers of this backdoor lordship, which is making young ones stumble (for which you will also be held accountable).

            We should constantly affirm to other believers that they should be careful to maintain good works as Titus 3:8 exhorts. We can send them into His Word so they can become sanctified, and grow in the Word of His Grace (John 17:17; Acts 20:38). We should give them ways to help them build on their faith (2 Pet 1:5-9) so they don’t grow barren and unfruitful.

            Maybe you might read this article to see if possibly you have become one of these.


          • There seems to be an attack of the enemy on the word ‘believe’. I see it with the Calvinists, it cannot be ‘merely mental assent’. It has to be a ‘heart faith’ not just a ‘head faith’. I see it with the Lordshippers, if one has REALLY believed THEN they will do X, have done X, will continue to do X. They will use the age old, ‘even demons believe’, and on and on. They have broadened the path, widened the ways in which one must enter in…

      • Holly, I think the confusion Sean has is this:

        The Bible says that fruitful believers (soil 4) will bear fruit. I agree with him on that.

        But, he has made the unbiblical leap that all believers will be fruitful.

        That is because he is interpreting scripture through a Lordship “salvation” lens.

        A Christian who is standing on God’s promise for eternal life does not need to wait for fruits to show up to know he is saved. In fact, if he does, he will never have much assurance.

        What kind of fruit did the thief on the cross have? Was it thirty fold.? Sixty fold? An hundred fold?

        • Sean I’m sorry, but I’m not going to post any comments that will confuse or condemn people. There is one condition in order to be saved. I know all the verses you brought forward, it might be good for you not to pick and choose individual verses to make a trail that leads down a broad path of corrupting minds from the simplicity that is in Christ. If you just had read some of the verses you supplied, but in their context. If you read John 6:39-40 instead of just 40, your answer regarding the will of the Father would have been clear to you.

          “If” I’m born again, I should then see it your way which you believe to be the truth?

          I disagree, and I agree with John sadly that you are confused. I’d walk away from George Zeller as I cautioned you before. If you read Matthew 7 in context you would see that these false prophets HAD fruits. They did many wonderful works. Jesus did not deny that. They are trying to justify themselves by those fruits, (as are you) instead of doing the will of the Father which is in context seen here. Losing no one does not mean that one will not go into bad doctrine, or be deceived. If it were not possible, the Holy Spirit would not have warned people about the apostasy they were already in (Galatians), nor warned believers not to let their mind be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ (2 Cor 11:3-4). Sean, I hope you have believed the simple gospel, but in this case you are not just preaching it and allowing the gospel to work, it seems that you are putting words into the Bible that are not there. What is the will of the Father? Seems simple, no one will lose eternal life that has believed on the Son. Period, no matter how often people try to twist it. You can say the Bible doesn’t teach something, but to prove it, there is an orderly way to use His Word and look at context. I’m sorry, but because we have a responsibility here, we cannot allow anymore of these posts.

          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. 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 day. May the Lord open your eyes.

          • Ctrogicj
            2 years ago

            Interesting you warned about George Zeller. I commented a few weeks ago about a booklet I read from a Free Grace church. The booklet mentioned fruit as “evidence” of salvation, and that was concerning. The booklet was written by George Zeller and he is seen to be a free grace person yet I’ve seen it stated here that he is lordship. Is it because of his false view of fruit or do you know if he teaches other error as well such as turn from sin to be saved? I don’t know much about him, I was just surprised these booklets were being promoted…but maybe the church overlooked/didn’t notice that leaven. Anyway just curious as you seen to know more about him. I was given several of his workbooks.

          • Carlie, he is thought to be free grace. I haven’t really kept up with all of them and after awhile, you forget what it was. I think it can be found on, but I believe it was insistence there would be fruit if you were ‘really’ saved. He outs Calvinism but I believe leaves out the P (Perseverance of the Saints).

            Once I know that have issues I just usually stay far away. If you need to know for sure, I’ll try to check my files. Love in Christ. I hope you have a wonderful time of Thanksgiving.

    • I liked the emphasis on taking the water of life freely by the way Sean, makes me think of the woman herself. There is no notation of shame for her five husbands, but of joy in finding the Messiah. She became one of the fastest to run and bring others to Christ.

      In Jesus Christ eternally, Holly

    • Sean, there is an old adage in the world of chemical engineering that goes something like this: Dilution is the solution to pollution.

      While possibly true in the context of chemical engineering, this adage is not true with respect to the corruption of the gospel. If something is a corruption of the gospel, then diluting it will not make it anything other than a corruption of the gospel.

      Your questions and comments have included the following:

      10/15/2014 11:46 a.m.

      If a man fully recognizes that he has sinned, but still wants to sin, and trusts in Christ to save him, so that he can have the “best of both worlds”, salvation and sin. Will Christ save such a man?

      10/20/2014 1:10 p.m.

      I’m talking about before salvation. If a man likes his sin, has he changed his mind about sin? Does he abhor his sin, or does he come to Christ to have a free ticket to sin? Something is wrong with this picture?

      5/8/2015 9:42 p.m. (excerpt from comment)

      No, the hearer shouldn’t believe so that he can have “the best of both worlds” (salvation and a life of sin), but if God is drawing him to Christ by seeing his sins and need for Christ, i don’t think he will be wanting a free ticket to sin at that moment of receiving Christ.

      Sean, each of these is another way of saying that someone has to (or should) want to stop sinning in order to receive eternal life. If someone wants to hang onto any sin, then he wants to keep sinning. There is no matter of degree.

      Therefore, you are saying that someone must hate his sin and must (or at least should) want to stop sinning in order to be saved. That is the only common thread among your comments, and it appears to be based on a non-biblical belief that you are having trouble letting go.

      This non-biblical belief is not consistent with grace. It is antithetical to grace. There is nothing in common between this belief – even in its most recent and most watered-down form – and grace.

      Dilution is not the solution to pollution! Why not just give up the pollution?

      • Preston
        9 years ago


        NIIIIIICE post!

        Many in the SAVED carnal church of Corinth were living “the best of both worlds”; included was fornication and getting drunk at the Lords Supper.

        Were they saved? YUP

        For when Paul came unto them in Acts 18, he didnt care to know ANYTHING about them save Jesus and Him crucified (the gospel)- 1 Cor 2. Later, Paul wrote a letter to these “already saved” people telling them what they SHOULD be doing and why.

  • Sean Budde
    9 years ago

    Oh, by the way, i also saw that the repentance of the Ninevites was about the city being saved (not them individually). I don’t know how people can say that’s about salvation when it’s about the city being spared because God “saw their works” (KJV).

    • I think Sean because they get confused regarding what kind of salvation/deliverance is spoken of. I’m not sure of the exact percentage, (it’s something close to over 70% of the time), it is a physical salvation, or saving people from certain consequences. Saving people out of dilemmas, but not speaking of salvation in the eternal life sense. People get that salvation confused in 2 Cor 7:10 with the free gift of eternal life. They don’t consider context, that dearly beloved were who was spoken to, and what they were being saved from.

      Yes, God saw their works… That cannot be for eternal life.

      Also a lot of people add ‘confessing sin’ as a must do in order to be saved.

      But Numbers 5:7 clearly lists confessing sin as a work of the law.

      God bless your weekend Sean, thank you for coming!

      • Sean Budde
        9 years ago

        You’re absolutely right Holly. I’ve seen that as well. Being delivered from enemies was one form of salvation.

        My pleasure. You have a very nice blog. May God bless you and yours, and continue to use you through all that you do for Him. Take care.

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