The Greatest Question

Torch

The question of all questions is “What think ye of Christ?” What one thinks of Christ determines his thoughts and actions on every question. The correctness of faith depends on the correct answer to the superlative question—“What think ye of Christ?” The question of how and when one is saved by faith through Christ is answered when the first question is resolved. The value of faith in salvation is determined by the use that is made of faith. How faith is to be used must be decided by what the gospel of Christ says; for apart from the testimony of the divine records no one can settle any question as to salvation through Christ.

Before all men today there are two plans of salvation offered. One is of human origin, and contradicts the teaching of Christ and his apostles. The other is Jesus Christ’s own plan, and it was revealed through the apostles.

Since the time of Martin Luther the doctrine of justification by faith alone has been taught as a leading theological tenet. It is taught in opposition to the teaching of Christ through his apostles. We should and we do emphasize justification by faith, as the apostles of the Lord taught it, but we refuse to add the word “alone,” and because we refuse to do that we are charged with teaching justification by works and water salvation. Paul and all of the apostles taught justification by faith, but never did they say faith alone. Why? “There’s a reason,” as certain advertising reads, and quite a sufficient reason. First, they would have contradicted the commission of Mark 16:15-16 which gave them authority to preach. Second, they knew that faith is a continuing state of mind. Faith was to be ever present, hence a life of faith. Hence, Paul said “Christ liveth in me.” Do you ask how? “The life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God” (Gal. 2:20). Thus Paul teaches that faith is ever present, all through life, and is directed all of the way by “the faith” of Christ. All students of language know that we may employ transposition of clauses in a sentence without changing its meaning, but rather making its meaning clearer. Transposing Rom. 1:16 it reads: “To every one that believeth it (the gospel) is the power of God unto salvation.” So here is the order: (1) There is a believer; (2) the believer is in possession of “the power” that is “unto” salvation; (3) when that “power” is used, the believer becomes saved. Power is necessary to the accomplishment of anything, physical or spiritual. The power must be used before there can be results. The power unto salvation is the gospel. That power and the use of it stands between the believer and salvation. Is the believer saved before and without the use of the power which is “unto”—in order to—his salvation? Who can imagine results without the use of the power necessary to the results? Thus it is that this passage, and every other passage quoted as a faith alone text, condemns the doctrine of salvation at the moment one believes.

What one thinks of Christ is determined by what he thinks of the gospel of Christ.


The above post is an excerpt from the book, TORCH by Foy E. Wallace, Jr. Follow the link to learn more about the book and purchase your copy today!

NEW RELEASE: The Scheme of Redemption (2 Volume Set)

We are happy to announce that our newest books – The Scheme of Redemption (2 Volume Set) by Maurice Barnett – are now available!

The Scheme of Redemption (2 Volume Set)In The Scheme of Redemption, Maurice Barnett expertly addresses the plan by which God made salvation available to all men. This two-volume series thoroughly explains the primary theme of the Bible while refuting some of the common errors about Christ and His sacrifice on the cross.

The first volume – The Person of Christ – contains an in-depth examination of Jesus, the Son of God who died on the cross for sins. Brother Barnett deals with such topics as the Godhead, the Deity of Christ, the character of Jesus, His temptation, and more.

The second volume – Reconciliation – contains a comprehensive analysis of the sacrificial death of Jesus on the cross. Brother Barnett expounds upon the nature of Christ’s sacrifice and the meaning of atonement. He carefully defines such terms as ransom, redemption, justification, and propitiation and shows how they relate to the sacrifice of Christ.

This material is worthy of careful consideration by all conscientious Bible students. It will be a valuable addition to the library of every preacher, elder, and teacher desiring the ability to better explain the plan of God that was carried out through Jesus Christ.

Read more about these new books and purchase your copies today!

NOTE: The two-volume set may be purchased at the link above for a discounted price. Each volume may be purchased individually at regular price – Volume 1: The Person of Christ; Volume 2: Reconciliation.

PRE-ORDER: The Scheme of Redemption (2 Volume Set)

We are happy to announce that our newest books – The Scheme of Redemption (2 Volume Set) by Maurice Barnett – are now available for pre-order!

The Scheme of Redemption (2 Volume Set)In The Scheme of Redemption, Maurice Barnett expertly addresses the plan by which God made salvation available to all men. This two-volume series thoroughly explains the primary theme of the Bible while refuting some of the common errors about Christ and His sacrifice on the cross.

The first volume – The Person of Christ – contains an in-depth examination of Jesus, the Son of God who died on the cross for sins. Brother Barnett deals with such topics as the Godhead, the Deity of Christ, the character of Jesus, His temptation, and more.

The second volume – Reconciliation – contains a comprehensive analysis of the sacrificial death of Jesus on the cross. Brother Barnett expounds upon the nature of Christ’s sacrifice and the meaning of atonement. He carefully defines such terms as ransom, redemption, justification, and propitiation and shows how they relate to the sacrifice of Christ.

This material is worthy of careful consideration by all conscientious Bible students. It will be a valuable addition to the library of every preacher, elder, and teacher desiring the ability to better explain the plan of God that was carried out through Jesus Christ.

Read more about these new books and pre-order your copies today!

NOTE: This two volume set is available now for pre-order. All orders will be shipped once the books arrive from the printer (scheduled for early May). After the release, the two volumes will also be available for purchase individually, but all pre-orders are sold as a set at an already discounted price.

No Subject So Vital as the Death of Christ

There is no subject so vital to man as the death of Christ.—The designs of his death are interwoven with all the designs of the universe, and are replete with the temporal, spiritual, and eternal destinies of man. Christ crucified is the most transcendent mystery in the moral dominions of God. Its power is the mainspring of all heavenly impulses, and it is itself the consummation of all divine wisdom and prudence. As all earthly waters arise from the ocean and descend to it, so the deep and the high counsels of God issue in this mysterious fact and emanate from it.

—Alexander Campbell


The above post is an excerpt from the book, Atonement: An Exchange in the Millennial Harbinger (1840-1841) by Barton W. Stone and Alexander Campbell. Follow the link to learn more about the book and purchase your copy today!

The Effectiveness of Jesus’ Sacrifice

Great Days in History: The Unfolding of the Scheme of Redemption

Unlike the sacrifices that were offered under the Law of Moses, Jesus’ sacrifice was perfectly able to take away sins. Again, the sacrifices under the old law that were offered “continually” could never “take away sins” (Hebrews 10:1, 4). Yet Jesus’ sacrifice was just “one offering” that “perfected for all time those who are sanctified” (Hebrews 10:14). John wrote, “The blood of Jesus… cleanses us from all sin” (1 John 1:7).

The effectiveness of Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross was for everyone. Jesus said, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life” (John 3:16). This is different from what is taught in the Calvinist doctrine of “limited atonement” – the idea that Jesus did not die for the world, but only for the elect. Yet Paul wrote, “For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men” (Titus 2:11). The salvation that was made possible by Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross is open to everyone.

However, this salvation is conditional. Though God’s grace has “appeared…to all men” (Titus 2:11), we know that not all will be saved (Matthew 7:13-14). How can this be? The only way to harmonize these passages is by concluding that God offers salvation to everyone but will only save those who meet His conditions. Jesus said, “He who has believed and has been baptized shall be saved; but he who has disbelieved shall be condemned” (Mark 16:16). He is “to all those who obey Him the source of eternal salvation” (Hebrews 5:9). Jesus’ crucifixion has made salvation available, but we must take advantage of this offer.


The above post is an excerpt from the book, Great Days in History: The Unfolding of the Scheme of Redemption by Andy Sochor. Follow the link to learn more about the book and purchase your copy today!