Friday, November 21, 2008

Simple gospel, easy to believe?


Despite what we often read and hear from the "Reformed" brethren of the "ultrafine doctrine," the Gospel is not difficult to understand nor hard to believe. The Lord is the Author and Finisher of our faith, and nothing is difficult or hard for Him.

Jesus compared being saved or born again to the simple act of looking to the brazen serpent and thereby being healed (John 3:14-16). Young Charles Spurgeon found it was simply a matter of "looking unto Jesus" to have everlasting life.

That is why I love Spurgeon so much -- he does not litter and clutter the simple Gospel and simple faith with a lot of the theoretical balderdash such as we read and hear from many in the "Reformed" camp.

Spurgeon tells a story about a simple fellow named "Jack" who was saved by simply believing. Jack was not so brilliant, and he would go around telling people he was saved, but many had doubts about simpleton Jack's being truly saved. He made it sound too "easy," and some would interrogate him on the "deeper" things.

Jack would simply reply to their questions -- "I'm a poor sinner,and nothing at all, but Jesus Christ is my all and all."

His critics and the doubters just could not shake Jack from his simple faith. Spurgeon took about two pages, telling about "poor Jack" and his testimony (Vol. 1, New Park Street Pulpit, pages 361-362).

Today, some of the "ultrafine doctrinal brethren" (as Spurgeon called them), put down simple faith as "easy believism," "decisional regeneration," etc., and they hold up a standard of salvation that amounts to little more than a form of salvation by works. But by God's grace, salvation is "easy," and the Gospel is "simple" -- despite what the brethren say and think.

Spurgeon said, "O simple faith, thou hast the key to the kingdom! Come, and welcome into my heart" (Vol. 38, MTP, page 201).

Spurgeon preached a sermon on John 1:12, 13, and he opened it by saying, "Everything here is simple; everything is sublime. Here is that simple gospel by which the most ignorant may be saved" (Vol. 38, Metropolitan Tabernacle Pulpit, THE SIMPLICITY

He said it was so simple that "children of three and four years of age have doubtless been capable of it; and there have been many persons, but very little removed from absolute idiocy, who have been able to believe; a doctrine which needs to be reasoned out may require a high degree of mental development, but the simple act of trusting requires nothing of the kind" (Vol. 12, MTP, page 19).

Now, the reason Spurgeon believed it was so simple is because he believed that the Word of God is powerful, and the Holy Spirit accompanies the Word, and that is what overcomes the resistance of human nature, and makes it easy to believe.

"This is a very simple matter," he said, "One grain of faith is worth more than than a diamond the size of the world . . . Salvation is a very simple business. God help us to look at it simply, and practically, and to receive Christ, and believe on his name! . . . I go over and over and over with this, and never get one jot further, because I find that this medicine cures all soul sicknesses, while human quackery cures none. Christ alone is the one remedy for sin-sick souls. I can sympathize with Luther when he said, 'I have preached justification by faith so often, and I feel sometimes that you are so slow to receive it, that I could almost take the Bible, and bang it about your heads!" (Vol. 38, MTP, page 268, 269, 272).

Spurgeon told of a woman who heard him preach but would not believe. She wanted him to pray for her to be saved.

Spurgeon said, "No, I will not pray for you . . . I set before you Christ crucified, and I beg you to believe in him. If you will not believe in him, you will be lost; and I shall not pray God to make any different way of salvation for you. You deserve to be lost if you will not believe in Christ."

The immediate result was that the woman exclaimed, "Oh, I see now! I do look to Christ, and trust him"(Vol. 38, MTP, page 388).

It's all so simple, isn't it? Yet, it seems our Flounders brethren, after all these years, are still trying to "recover the gospel."

When will they learn that the Gospel is simple, and believing it is so easy?


At Friday, November 21, 2008 7:11:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you Brother Bob! I enjoy visiting this site you and Charles provide and I greatly appreciate your tenacity in holding up the Truth! I suspect there are many 'reformed' brethern who have been enlightend as to the actual beliefs and writings of such men as Spurgeon and Carroll when it comes to the truth of the gospel thanks to your diligence. Alas, many have also had their minds twisted and "corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ". Keep up the great work!!

In Him,


At Friday, November 21, 2008 7:34:00 PM, Blogger Ian D. Elsasser said...

Believing in Jesus is the work God wants:

Therefore they said to Him, "What shall we do, so that we may work the works of God?" Jesus answered and said to them, "This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He has sent" (John 6.28-29).

It seems simple to me.

At Saturday, November 22, 2008 7:53:00 PM, Blogger Bob L. Ross said...


Bob, this was a real blessing to read. Thanks! Just to rest wholly and completely in the righteousness of Christ, what a comfort, what a relief! Paul had it right, didn’t he…”Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved.” That is the verse that God used to save Joyce (wife) all alone in her dorm room in college well over 50 years ago. For me, as a boy of 10 in VBS, it was John 3:16 “…whosoever believeth in him should not perish…”. The Word of God is “quick and powerful…” Simply believe! “For the scripture saith,
‘Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.’” --BBB

Bob's Note:

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