Saving Faith (1689)

By S.C. Shaw

The London Baptist Confession of faith is a beautiful and rich confession of the reformed Christian faith. I simply included the scriptures they reference after each section written out. It is a beautiful meditation and devotion time to read through. I pray you are blessed by it and it helps you see the bigness of God, exalt Christ higher and live by the power of the Holy Spirit more each day. There is no perfect and infallible authority except God’s Words revealed in the Bible. But there is much Christians can and should learn from other godly men and women.

Link to full confession: http://founders.org/1689-confession/

Chapter 14 – Saving Faith (In Full)

The grace of faith, by which the elect are enabled to believe so that their souls are saved, is the work of the Spirit of Christ in their hearts. Faith is ordinarily produced by the ministry of the Word. By this same ministry and by the administration of baptism and the Lord’s supper, prayer, and other means appointed by God, faith is increased and strengthened.

By this faith Christians believe to be true everything revealed in the Word, recognizing it as the authority of God himself. They also perceive that the Word is more excellent than every other writing and everything else in the world, because it displays the glory of God in his attributes, the excellence of Christ in his nature and offices, and the power and fullness of the Holy Spirit in his activities and operations. So they are enabled to entrust their souls to the truth believed. They respond differently according to the content of each particular passage—obeying the commands, trembling at the threatenings, and embracing the promises of God for this life and the one to come. But the principal acts of saving faith focus directly on Christ—accepting, receiving, and resting upon him alone for justification, sanctification, and eternal life, by virtue of the covenant of grace.

This faith may exist in varying degrees so that it may be either weak or strong. Yet even in its weakest form, it is different in kind or nature (like all other saving graces) from the faith and common grace of temporary believers. Therefore, faith may often be attacked and weakened, but it gains the victory. It matures in many to the point that they attain full assurance through Christ, who is both the founder and perfecter of our faith.

 

Chapter 14 – Saving Faith (w/ Scripture) ESV

-The grace of faith, by which the elect are enabled to believe so that their souls are saved, is the work of the Spirit of Christ in their hearts.

(2 Corinthians 4:13, Since we have the same spirit of faith according to what has been written, “I believed, and so I spoke,” we also believe, and so we also speak,)

(Ephesians 2:8, For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God,)

-Faith is ordinarily produced by the ministry of the Word.

(Romans 10:14, How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching?)

(Romans 10:17, So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.)

-By this same ministry and by the administration of baptism and the Lord’s supper, prayer, and other means appointed by God, faith is increased and strengthened.

(Luke 17:5, The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith!”)

(1 Peter 2:2, Like newborn infants, long for the pure spiritual milk, that by it you may grow up into salvation)

(Acts 20:32, And now I commend you to God and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up and to give you the inheritance among all those who are sanctified.)

-By this faith Christians believe to be true everything revealed in the Word, recognizing it as the authority of God himself.

(Acts 24:14, But this I confess to you, that according to the Way, which they call a sect, I worship the God of our fathers, believing everything laid down by the Law and written in the Prophets,)

-They also perceive that the Word is more excellent than every other writing and everything else in the world,

(Psalms 27:7–10, Hear, O Lord, when I cry aloud; be gracious to me and answer me! You have said, “Seek my face.” My heart says to you, “Your face, Lord, do I seek.” Hide not your face from me. Turn not your servant away in anger, O you who have been my help. Cast me not off; forsake me not, O God of my salvation! For my father and my mother have forsaken me, but the Lord will take me in.)

(Psalms 119:72, The law of your mouth is better to me than thousands of gold and silver pieces.)

-because it displays the glory of God in his attributes, the excellence of Christ in his nature and offices, and the power and fullness of the Holy Spirit in his activities and operations. So they are enabled to entrust their souls to the truth believed.

(2 Timothy 1:12, which is why I suffer as I do. But I am not ashamed, for I know whom I have believed, and I am convinced that he is able to guard until that day what has been entrusted to me.)

-They respond differently according to the content of each particular passage—obeying the commands,

(John 14:14, If you ask me anything in my name, I will do it.)

-trembling at the threatenings,

(Isaiah 66:2, All these things my hand has made, and so all these things came to be, declares the Lord. But this is the one to whom I will look: he who is humble and contrite in spirit and trembles at my word.)

-and embracing the promises of God for this life and the one to come.

(Hebrews 11:13, These all died in faith, not having received the things promised, but having seen them and greeted them from afar, and having acknowledged that they were strangers and exiles on the earth.)

-But the principal acts of saving faith focus directly on Christ—accepting, receiving, and resting upon him alone for justification, sanctification, and eternal life, by virtue of the covenant of grace.

(John 1:12, But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God,)

(Acts 16:31, And they said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household.”)

(Galatians 2:20, I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.)

(Acts 15:11, But we believe that we will be saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus, just as they will.”)

-This faith may exist in varying degrees so that it may be either weak or strong.

(Hebrews 5:13-14, for everyone who lives on milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, since he is a child. But solid food is for the mature, for those who have their powers of discernment trained by constant practice to distinguish good from evil.)

(Matthew 6:30, But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?)

(Romans 4:19-20, He did not weaken in faith when he considered his own body, which was as good as dead (since he was about a hundred years old), or when he considered the barrenness of Sarah’s womb. No unbelief made him waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God,)

-Yet even in its weakest form, it is different in kind or nature (like all other saving graces) from the faith and common grace of temporary believers.

(2 Peter 1:1, Simeon Peter, a servant and apostle of Jesus Christ, To those who have obtained a faith of equal standing with ours by the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ)

-Therefore, faith may often be attacked and weakened, but it gains the victory.

(Ephesians 6:16, In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one;)

(1 John 5:4-5, For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world except the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?)

-It matures in many to the point that they attain full assurance through Christ,

(Hebrews 6:11-12, And we desire each one of you to show the same earnestness to have the full assurance of hope until the end, so that you may not be sluggish, but imitators of those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.)

(Colossians 2:2, that their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, to reach all the riches of full assurance of understanding and the knowledge of God’s mystery, which is Christ,)

-who is both the founder and perfecter of our faith.

(Hebrews 12:2, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.)

Closing.

Please don’t let my word or any mans word be the final word on this. Pick up the bible, read Gospel saturated books by good authors, read good commentaries on the bible, pick up Wayne Grudem’s “Systematic Theology” and learn from a man’s lifetime of study and meditation on the Word of God. Most of all, trust in Jesus Christ and know what He has given us is whole, perfect and is for our good and His glory. Love you all!

The grace of the Lord Jesus be with all. Amen.

Music www.TheShawsMusic.com

Podcast www.MisfitMinistry.com

Instagram @theshaws @psalmlife @fitcore

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