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The Lordship of Christ PDF Print E-mail

For your information, inspiration and intercession, please study this ICCP Discussion Document from the Reformation 500 Church Consultation in Wittenberg, Germany, October 2017, in preparation for the upcoming Reformation 500 Global Church Council Zürich, 15-19 July 2019.

 

If you have any suggestions on how these may be improved, or to communicate the support of your church, mission, or ministry, write to the International Church Council Project. 

 

ARTICLES of AFFIRMATION and DENIAL

 

Article I

We affirm that for the purposes of salvation, the Saviourhood of Christ and the Lordship of Christ cannot be separated.1

We deny that anyone can receive Christ as his Saviour while he consciously rejects Him as Lord. This is deception.2

Isaiah 55:6-7; Mat. 6:12; 7:21-27; 10:32-33; 11:28-29; Luke 18:18-30; 19:1-10; 24:46-47; Acts 2:37-38; 3:19; 5:31; 17:30; 16:31; 20:21; Romans 2:4; 4:23-24; 10:9; 2 Cor. 7:10; Heb. 5:9; 6:1; 1 Peter 1:2; Rev. 3:19

1 Cor. 6:9-11; 1 John 3:6-8

 

Article II

We affirm that the attempt of some theologies to define Jesus for the purposes of salvation as simply the “God-man,” without any reference to the authority of His Lordship, is to present a false Christ.

We deny that repentance is simply or only a change of mind about the identity of the God-man.

 

Article III

We affirm that saving faith is always an instrument or means through which Christ saves a sinner.1 It is never a meritorious basis of salvation.2

We deny that a person can come to saving faith unless the Spirit of the Lord draws that person.3

John 3:15-16, 18, 36; 5:24; Acts 10:43; Rom. 3:23-26; 10:9-10

Rom. 3:27-28; Eph. 2:8-9; Titus 3:5-7

John 6:44,65; Titus 3:3-7

 

Article IV

We affirm that repentance is prerequisite to salvation1 and entails acknowledgment of the mind and heart of the sinner concerning his sinfulness, his lost estate and his need for turning from his sin,2 and his coming under the ownership and lordship of Christ for obedience to His commands.3

We deny that one has the prerequisite repentance if he believes he can adequately deal with his sin by simply implementing a plan of reform.4

Luke 24:46-47; Acts 2:37-38; 3:19; 5:31; 17:30; 20:21; 26:18; Rom. 2:4; 2 Cor. 7:10; 1 John 3:6-8; 2:1-6

Psalm 32:5; 51:1-19; Pro. 28:13; Jer. 3:13; Ezek. 36:31; Mat. 3:6; Acts 19:18; Rom. 6:12,16; 1 John 1:9-10

Jer. 31:30; Mat. 5:17-19; 7:21-23; 22:37-40; 28:19-20; John 3:36; 14:15; Acts 6:7; Rom 1:5; 2:8; 10:9-10; 16:19, 26; 1 Cor. 9:21; Philip. 2:9-13; Titus 2:14; Heb. 3:18-19; 4:2-6; 5:9; 11:8; James 1:22-2:26; 1 Peter 1:2; 4:17; 1 John 2:4; 3:4

Psa. 49:7-8; Jer. 13:23; Rom. 3:19-28

 

Article V

We affirm that saving faith is a gift of God’s grace that involves a number of implicit elements in one event: repentance,1 obedience to Christ’s call,2 and volitional trust in Christ alone to impart new and eternal life.3

We deny that salvation occurs without the elements of recognition of need for Christ or without trust and obedience in the heart.

Isaiah 1:16-17; Mat. 3:8; Luke 24:46-47; Acts 2:37-38; 3:19, 26; 5:31; 11:18; 14:15; 17:30; 20:21; 26:18, 20; Rom. 2:4; 2 Cor. 7:10-11; 1 Thes. 1:9; 2 Tim. 2.25; 1 John 3:6-8; 2:1-6

Mat. 11:28-30; Luke 9:23; John 3:36; 5:39-40; 6:44; 7:37-38; Rom. 1:5; 1 Peter 1:2

John 1:12; 3:14-18, 36; 5:24, 38-47; 6:28-29, 35-40, 57-58; 7:38; 11:25; 20:31; Rom. 4:23-25; 2 Tim. 1:12

 

Article VI

We affirm that in sharing the gospel with others, it is perfectly biblical to confront an individual with the issue of his acknowledgment of the Lordship of Christ the Creator.1

We deny that this method of presenting the gospel adds “meritorious works” to salvation or that yielding to the Lordship of Christ at conversion constitutes a “meritorious work.”

(See the other articles of this paper and their attendant verses.)

 

Article VII

We affirm that the New Testament teaches the inextricable relationship of justification and sanctification. The New Testament perspective on “salvation” is that justification will issue forth in a life of gradual growth in sanctification as the believer responds to the Lordship which was accepted and begun at the time of salvation.1

We deny that the progress of sanctification is uniform for all believers or that it implies perfection or the absence of intermittent sin or struggle.2

John 14:15; Acts 15:20; Rom. 6:6-7, 15-23; 8:12-13; 12:1-2; 13:13-14; 1 Cor. 6:9-11; 2 Cor. 6:16-7:1; Gal. 5:16-26; Eph. 4:14-5:11; Phil. 1:6; 2:12-13; Col. 3:5-4:6; 1 Thes. 4:3; 2 Thes. 2:13; 1 Tim. 6:11-12; 2 Tim. 2:19, 22; Titus 2:11-14; Heb. 5:9; 12:14; James 2:14-26; 1 Peter 1:13-23; 4:1-3; 2 Peter 1:4-11; 3:14; 1 John 1:9-2:6; 2:15-17; 3:1-10; Rev. 3:21

1 John 1:9-2:6

 

Article VIII

We affirm that all true Christians are at various stages of their growth in the sanctifying work of the Holy Spirit, without which there is no “salvation” at all in the biblical, New Testament sense.1

We deny that the New Testament teaches two classes of Christians: (1) those who have accepted Christ as Saviour but remain in a static state of immaturity or carnality (so-called “secret believers” or “carnal Christians”) and (2) those who have gone on to obey Christ as Lord and thereby then become His “spiritual disciples.” This distinction is an artificial expedient and false conception of the Body of Christ.

Rom. 6:11-18; 1 Cor. 6:9-11; Gal. 5:16-24; Heb. 12:14

 

Article IX

We affirm that some may accept Christ and be saved who have not consciously focused on the issue of Christ’s Lordship, but who have implicitly submitted themselves to His direction and obedience to the Scriptures.

We deny that acceptance of Christ as Lord requires the formulation of any particular verbal expression.

 

Article X

We affirm that some who profess acceptance of Christ, without explicitly or implicitly facing the issue of Christ’s Lordship, are not saved; and we affirm that these, over a period of time, will likely, by persisting in an unregenerate way of life, make this evident.1

We deny that such a persistent life of disobedience to the Lord can, in fact, be the life of any true Christian.2 We further deny that there can be a true understanding of salvation where Christ is considered Saviour apart from His being Lord.

Mat. 7:21; 1 Cor. 6:9-11; Gal. 5:16-24; Heb. 10:26-31

Heb. 10:26-31; 1 John 3:1-12

 

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See also:

Reformation 500 Church Council Zürich

Ulrich Zwingli and the Reformation in Switzerland

1. The Authority of Scripture

2. Biblical Hermeneutics

3. The Essentials of a Christian World View

4. The Kingdom of God

5. The Omniscience of God and Human Freedom

6. The Pelagian Controversy

7. The Judicial and Substitutionary Nature of Salvation

8. The Trinity

9. The Eternal Fate of Unbelievers

 
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