Distinctives of ‘Lordship Salvation’

‘The gospel that Jesus proclaimed was a call to discipleship, a call to follow him in submissive obedience, not just a plea to make a decision or pray a prayer. Jesus’ message liberated people from the bondage of their sin while it confronted and condemned hypocrisy. It was an offer of eternal life and forgiveness for repentant sinners, but at the same time it was a rebuke to outwardly religious people whose lives were devoid of true righteousness. It put sinners on notice that they must turn from sin and embrace God’s righteousness….


First, Scripture teaches that the gospel calls sinners to faith joined in oneness with repentance (Acts 2:38; 17:30; 20:21; 2 Pet. 3:9)…. Second, Scripture teaches that salvation is all God’s work. Those who believe are saved utterly apart from any effort on their own (Titus 3:5)…. Third, Scripture teaches that the object of faith is Christ Himself, not a creed or a promise (John 3:16)…. Fourth, Scripture teaches that real faith inevitably produces a changed life (2 Cor. 5:17). Salvation includes a transformation of the inner person (Gal. 2:20)…. Fifth, Scripture teaches that God’s gift of eternal life includes all that pertains to life and godliness (2 Pet. 1:3; Rom. 8:32), not just a ticket to heaven…. Sixth, Scripture teaches that Jesus is Lord of all, and the faith He demands involves unconditional surrender (Rom. 6:17-18; 10:9-10)…. Seventh, Scripture teaches that those who truly believe will love Christ (1 Pet. 1:8-9; Rom. 8:28-30; 1 Cor. 16:22)…. Eighth, Scripture teaches that behavior is an important test of faith. Obedience is evidence that one’s faith is real (1 John 2:3)…. Ninth, Scripture teaches that genuine believers may stumble and fall, but they will persevere in the faith (1 Cor. 1:8)…. Most Christians recognize that these nine distinctives are not new or radical ideas. The preponderance of Bible-believing Christians over the centuries have held these to be basic tenets of orthodoxy….’

-Grace Community Church, Sun Valley, California

Read the whole thing here

(GSIV: Lordship, Earning vs effort: grace, justification, and sanctification)

Committed to Doctrines of Grace and Missions

Sometimes a commitment to the doctrines of grace has led some Christians to wrongly become hyper Calvinists (click here). This only proves that no system keeps man from being thoroughly depraved; but that point proves Calvinism rather than argues against it. Often though the doctrines of grace have rightly led Christians to care about the lost like God cares.

Consider the American theologian and pastor Francis Wayland (1796-1865), “The Moral Dignity of the Missionary Enterprise.” (This link also works although his name is misspelled.)

(See GSiV here)

(Also see GSiV here)

How often should we worship with the church?

‘Does a Christian have to attend every service his church provides? The simple answer is “no.” There is no New Testament command for believers to maintain perfect attendance at church. Attending every church service does not make a person “holier” than the one who misses a service here and there. Our relationship with God is not based on rule-following or punching a time clock at church; it’s based on our position in Christ (1 Corinthians 1:2). The question that matters in eternity is not “How many times was I in church” but “Did I truly know Jesus Christ?” (Matthew 7:21–23).

‘However, there is a problem with having a nonchalant attitude toward church attendance. We should not be ambivalent in the matter. God’s plan in this age involves the church, which Jesus promised to build (Matthew 16:18), and we should be supporting God’s plan enthusiastically.’

Read whole article here

(See at GSiV:

Ân điển, chứ không phải những quy tắc / Grace not rules

Earning vs effort: grace, justification, and sanctification)

The Protestant Reformation (En and Vn)

Cuộc Cải Chánh

Many posts below contain both Vietnamese and English.

Reformation History: Five Onlys–part 10

Reformation History: John Calvin là ai?–part 9

Reformation History: John Calvin là ai?–part 8

Reformation History: William Farel–part 7

Reformation History: Calvin và Farel–part 6

Reformation History: Teach Your Kids about it–part 5

Reformation History: 5 Điều Duy Nhất–part 4

Reformation History: Martin Luther’s Conversion (Spurgeon)–part 3

Reformation History: Martin Luther’s Conversion (Spurgeon)–part 2

Reformation History: Luther và Calvin–part 1

Was the Reformation a Missionary Movement?

Vận Mệnh của Cuộc Cải Chánh

J. Calvin bắt đầu theo Phong Trào Cải Chánh

The Great Translator: Tyndale and the Reformation

Radical Reformation: Anabaptists (B. Hubmaier)

Radical Reformation: Anabaptists

Radical Reformation: Three groups

Cuộc Cải Chánh Của Martin Luther–part 2

Cuộc Cải Chánh Của Martin Luther–part 1

Bức Thành Kiên Cố (A Mighty Fortress is our God)

Differences between Protestants and Catholics?

Scripture Alone!

Justification according to the Philadelphia Confession 1742

Luther, Calvin, Farel, Reformation

Năm Điều Duy Nhất Của Cuộc Cải Chánh (5 onlys, 5 solas)

Brief Story (in Vietnamese) of the Whole Bible

Here is a type of Creation to Christ (C2C) tool that is sensitive to Asian issues of shame and fear but doesn’t neglect guilt and sin. It is concise but includes important simple details of the Bible’s story about Israel and Abraham while telling redemption history (redemptive historical). It approaches the topic with the theme of God as King over the peoples (citizens) of the world, but especially his chosen ones.

In English and Vietnamese


God creates a good world.

  • Đức Chúa Trời tạo nên thế giới tốt đẹp.

Man rebels.

  • Con người không vâng lời Đức Chúa Trời.

God keeps his promise through Abraham.

  • Đức Chúa Trời giữ lời hứa của Ngài bằng Áp ra ham.

God judges Israel but keeps his promise.

  • Đức Chúa Trời phán xét Israel nhưng vẫn giữ lời hứa của Ngài.

God fulfills his promise in King Jesus.

  • Đức Chúa Trời hoàn thành lời hứa của Ngài bởi Vua Giê-xu.

King Jesus returns to judge and restore.

  • Vua Giê-xu trở lại để phán xét và phục hồi.

Read more / đọc thêm

Pragmatism Undermines Doctrine

‘The SBC [Southern Baptist Convention] was overwhelmingly pragmatic. During the middle decades of the 20th century, the SBC became preoccupied with growth—and we were good at it. The SBC grew, overtaking every other denomination in the United States. When Southern Baptist pastors got together, they basically assumed orthodoxy, and all their conversations were about program, pragmatism, and growth.

‘But pragmatism undermines orthodoxy. You simply measure your health by program, attendance, and growth, but that means you’ll do whatever it takes to get a crowd. Pragmatism means you minimize the theology and maximize the program—a recipe that led to liberalism inside our churches. Many Southern Baptists believed that if we were growing, we couldn’t possibly be liberal. It was a form of self-blindness.’

-Al Mohler

Read the whole article

(See at GSiV:

Church Growth, Planning, and Multiplication

Starting Churches: Making Disciples

Nên Thánh Động Lực Bởi Phúc Âm)

Was the Reformation a Missionary Movement?

Some Christians critical of the theology of the magisterial reformers often accuse them of not caring for the lost or evangelism. But is this true according to history?

“The Reformers viewed their task as a missionary one: they were planting true Christian churches.”




  • The Victorious Advance of Christ’s Kingdom
  • Calvin’s Prayers for the Extension of Christ’s Kingdom

-Michael Haykin

Read the whole article here

(Resources in Vietnamese and English at GSiV:

Luther, Calvin, Farel, Reformation & Sanctification

& Researching Calvinism and Missions? & Năm Điều Duy Nhất Của Cuộc Cải Chánh (5 onlys, 5 solas))

Justification according to the Philadelphia Confession 1742

Happy Reformation Day!

What is the doctrine of justification?

Chương 11

  1. Những ai được Đức Chúa Trời ban cho sự kêu gọi bất khả kháng của Ngài cũng sẽ được Ngài xưng công bình, không phải bằng việc truyền vào trong họ sự công bình của Ngài mà bằng việc Ngài tha tội cho họ, và bằng việc chấp nhận họ và kể họ là công bình; chẳng phải vì bất cứ gì từ họ mà tất cả chỉ vì Đức Chúa Jêsus Christ mà thôi; chẳng phải vì tự thân đức tin hoặc thể theo bất cứ một sự vâng phục nào của họ mà chính là bởi sự qui kết thể theo sự vâng phục chủ động của Đức Chúa Jêsus Christ đối với toàn bộ luật pháp của Đức Chúa Trời, và thể theo sự vâng phục thụ động của Ngài trong sự chết Ngài mà kẻ được gọi của Đức Chúa Trời được xưng là công bình; kẻ được gọi của Đức Chúa Trời tiếp nhận Chúa Cứu Thế Jêsus và toàn tín nơi Ngài bằng đức tin là điều không phải tự họ có được mà thật ra là sự ban cho của Đức Chúa Trời. (Rô. 3:24; 8:30; Rô. 4:5, 6, 7, 8; Êph. 1:7; 1Cô. 1:30, 31; Rô. 5:17, 18, 19; Php. 3:8, 9; Êph. 2:8, 9, 10; Gi. 1:12; Rô. 5:17)
  2. Đức tin của kẻ được chọn của Đức Chúa Trời để toàn tín nơi Đức Chúa Jêsus Christ và sự công bình của Ngài là phương cách duy nhất để được xưng công bình: Dầu vậy cũng chẳng phải chỉ bởi duy nhất đức tin của kẻ được chọn của Đức Chúa Trời mà họ được xưng công bình mà đức tin ấy luôn luôn được cặp theo bởi các ân điển khác của Ngài nữa, và đức tin luôn luôn phải là đức tin kết quả trong tình yêu thương. (Rô. 3:28; Gal. 5:6; Gia. 2:17, 22, 26)
  3. Đức Chúa Jêsus, bởi sự vâng phục và sự chết của Ngài, đã thực sự trả xong nợ tội của những người đã được xưng công bình; Ngài làm điều ấy bằng sự hy sinh chính Ngài, bởi huyết đã đổ trên Thập Tự Giá, trả thay án phạt cho họ, đáp ứng đầy đủ điều kiện của sự công nghĩa của Đức Chúa Trời để tha tội vì chính Đức Chúa Cha đã ban Ngài cho họ chứ chẳng do bất cứ điều chi từ họ cả, sự xưng công bình ấy hoàn toàn là sự ban cho về ân điển là ân điển công nghĩa và phong phú cho chính sự vinh hiển của Đức Chúa Trời. (Hê. 10:14; 1Phi. 1:18,19; Ês. 53:5, 6; Rô. 8:32; 2Cô. 5:21; Rô. 3:26; Êph. 1:6, 7; 2:7)

Tuyên Xưng Philadelphia (1742)

Chapter 11

  1. Those whom God effectually calleth, He also freely justifieth, not by infusing righteousness into them, but by pardoning their sins, and by accounting and accepting their persons, as righteous; not for anything wrought in them, or done by them, but for Christ’s sake alone; not by imputing faith itself, the act of believing, or any other evangelical obedience to them, as their righteousness, but by imputing Christ’s active obedience unto the whole law, and passive obedience in His death, for their whole and sole righteousness; they receiving, and resting on Him, and His righteousness by faith; which faith they have not of themselves: it is the gift of God.
  2. Faith thus receiving and resting on Christ and His righteousness, is the alone instrument of justification: yet it is not alone in the person justified, but is ever accompanied with all other saving graces, and is no dead faith, but worketh by love.
  3. Christ, by His obedience and death, did fully discharge the debt of all those that are justified; and did by the sacrifice of Himself, in the blood of His cross, undergoing in their stead the penalty due unto them, make a proper, real and full satisfaction to God’s justice in their behalf; yet, inasmuch as He was given by the Father for them, and His obedience and satisfaction accepted in their stead, and both freely, not for anything in them, their justification is only of free grace, that both the exact justice and rich grace of God might be glorified in the justification of sinners.

Philadelphia Baptist Confession of Faith (1742)

(Resources in Vietnamese and English at GSiV:

Luther, Calvin, Farel, Reformation & Sanctification &

Năm Điều Duy Nhất Của Cuộc Cải Chánh (5 onlys, 5 solas))


Scripture Alone!

‘Bible is the highest and only infallible authority.  The teachings of the church and ecumenical councils are important and bear real authority. But they are not infallible.  Their teachings must always submit to Scripture.’

Read the whole article here

  • ‘Chỉ có duy nhất Kinh Thánh: Chỉ có duy nhất Kinh Thánh là có quyền năng cho cuộc sống và thực hành trong Hội Thánh. (Chỉ có một mình Kinh Thánh; Tiếng La-tinh: Sola Scriptura)’
  • ‘Scripture Alone: Scripture alone as the authority for life and practice in the church. (Only Scripture; Latin: Sola Scriptura)’

(Resources in Vietnamese and English at GSiV:

Luther, Calvin, Farel, Reformation & Sanctification &

Năm Điều Duy Nhất Của Cuộc Cải Chánh (5 onlys, 5 solas))

Differences between Protestants and Catholics?

We find the wisdom Kevin DeYoung dispenses to be worthwhile here:

The Church: ‘The Catholic Church also has seven sacraments instead of two–Eucharist (or Lord’s Supper) and baptism like Protestants, and then penance, holy orders, marriage, confirmation, and last rites….’

Scripture: ‘But Catholic theology goes beyond just respecting the past; it sacralizes it. “Both Scripture and Tradition must be accepted and honored with equal sentiments of devotion and reverence,” the Catechism states….’

Lord’s Supper: ‘Central to the Catholic faith is the Mass (their worship service), and central to the Mass is the celebration of the Eucharist. Catholics believe that bread and wine are transubstantiated into the actual, physical body and blood of Jesus Christ….’

Baptism: ‘Catholics teach that “justification is conferred in Baptism” ….’

Mary: ‘Mary is not only the Mother of Christ, but the Mother of the church….’

Purgatory: ‘Those who die in God’s grace, but still imperfectly purified, are assured of eternal life, but must first undergo purification in purgatory. Because of the presence of this intermediate state, the Catholic Church has developed the practice of prayer for the dead….’

Merit: ‘It is not really fair to say “Catholics teach that you can earn your salvation.” That may be what many Catholics believe, but the official teaching of Rome is more nuanced, though still a long way off from the Reformation understanding sola gratia….’

Justification: ‘Catholic teaching rejects the Protestant doctrine of imputed righteousness. The question is this: is the righteousness whereby we are forgiven and made right with God a righteousness working in us or a righteousness reckoned to our account? Catholics say the former, Protestants the latter….’

Conclusion: ‘Should Catholics and Protestants treat each other decently and with respect? Of course…. But are the disagreements between Protestants and Catholics, therefore, negligible? Hardly. The differences still exist, and they still matter….’

Read whole article

(Resources in Vietnamese and English at GSiV:

Earning vs effort: grace, justification, and sanctification,

Luther, Calvin, Farel, Reformation &

Năm Điều Duy Nhất Của Cuộc Cải Chánh (5 onlys, 5 solas))