Beliefs for salvation, ‘the good, the bad and the ugly’

Welcome back to my blog. Thank you for visiting today. We are in an exciting series on exploring relevant research findings from Teleios! A list of our compelling findings is on our website (www.teleiosresearch.com).

Teleios recently completed a survey of visitors to the Instagram site, GodsHolyScriptures. We had 224 participants: 93% were adolescents (< 18) and millennials (18-34), 60% evangelicals and 60% female. We asked them what they must believe to be a Christian. Wow, we received some amazing answers!

The good – Fortunately, almost all participants agreed that salvation was by faith through grace based on Christ’s substitutionary sacrifice for our sins on the cross (87%). Furthermore, most (60%) believed their salvation was secure after their belief through faith; all very scriptural, YAY! (Romans 10:9-11; Ephesians 2:4-10; Romans 3:23-26; 1 Peter 1:4-5; John 10:28-30).

The bad – However, high percentages of our participants also added in some extra biblical requirements for being saved, which are not mentioned in biblical salvation texts (see Table).

Table: Non-biblical additions to salvation
(percent agreeing with statement)

87%
Believe heaven and hell are real places
78%
Believe the devil is real
65%
Believe in creation
64%
Believe every word of the Bible
58%

Although our participants are admirable in their zeal, when sharing the gospel, we should be careful not to add burdens that God does not Himself mention. For salvation a person simply needs to believe in the sacrifice of Christ for their sins and His resurrection by faith.

Then upon belief, a person is regenerated by the Spirit to become a new person in Christ. They will then grow in orthodoxy, accepting the issues listed in the Table, by the help of the Spirit as they study and grow in biblical knowledge.

The ugly – Further, the participants also frequently added in some extra-biblical requirements for salvation, including being anti-abortion and water baptized (40% each). Again, these are important topics but have nothing to do with our salvation. Christ alone and His glorious sacrifice is sufficient to save us.

We have a wonderful Savior who has provided the amazing gift of salvation. For those who already have believed to salvation, He then graciously causes us to grow. Don’t make it hard for others! It is God who causes young believers to stand, not us (Romans 14:4).

Join us again next week as we continue to explore what one must do be saved and assured of salvation. We will continue the amazing findings of Teleios research and the advantages of the scripture.

WC Stewart


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