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  • Mark Clary

Recent Conversation Regarding Free Will and Good Deeds

Following is recent conversation I had with a professing Christian (although the name has been changed). The two lies to pay attention to is that we have the power to reject or accept God's calling us to salvation and that our good deeds are stand alone evidence or proof that we are saved from the wrath to come.


Greetings Dan, I had the opportunity to read the article you recently wrote. I would like to challenge you on a couple of things. Like you, I was deceived regarding what true salvation looks like according to God's Word. You are right in that we are not saved by our obedience, but you are sadly misguided that obedience is the evidence, the fruit, and the results of salvation. There are a lot of people who can produce fruit (even outside the church), but it can easily be fake fruit and does nothing to prove you are saved by Christ. You stated that all God's promises can be yours by "going to your knees today and putting your faith and trust in Jesus Christ." This statement is no different then the easy believism that most churches peddle today. I heartily agree with you on the characteristics of denying self, etc.

If what you say is true, how do you explain Romans 9:16-21ff. It is not you or I who decide when we are saved. Would you be obedient to God's ordinances expecting nothing in return from God, even though your name is not written in the lamb's book of life? Can you worship the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, and might even if He has already decreed before time that you would spend eternity in hell? I would refer you to 1 Corinthians 1:18, II Corinthians 2:15 and Romans 13:11. The operative words here are "being saved" and "nearer." You see, salvation is conditional upon those who persevere and endure to the end and upon God who chooses (not you). True salvation has already been predetermined before time existed; our job is to diligently seek, deny self (as you have said), meditate on our sins (poor in spirit, contrite heart), etc. There are plenty of litmus tests in God's Word regarding those who are "being saved," but you make a dangerous presumption that you are already saved based upon a false presentation of the gospel that someone told you. This is nothing but a selfish gospel that panders to our own selfish interests.

Dan, I would like you to know that this is not a personal attack on you, but rather a loving rebuke. I would like to direct you to our website that we recently published online to combat the many false truths peddled by most churches in America today. The website is www.SeekingTheNarrowWay.Org

Greetings back at you!I appreciate you reading my article.If you do not think that our obedience to God's Word is the evidence of our salvation, what do you think is? I agree that you can be obeying many things but it is what you refuse to obey that can reject you from God (watching porn, cheating on your spouse, stealing, murdering, etc., all while you are involved with ministries!). But, that would be examples of false conversion.I disagree that giving your life to Jesus, is the message of easy believism as genuinely giving your life to Jesus IS denying self and following Him. I do believe that many interpret that as an altar call or simple believism.Regarding Romans 9:16-21, who are those who God has mercy on? Those who hear His voice and turn to Him. We do not know who they are and are to preach the Gospel and warn all nations, the four corners of the earth, etc.Those who continue to ignore God's commands/His Word, show that they do not belong to God. But there is a free will in there for man to respond and, if you don't, then it is evidence that you are not part of the "elect" so to speak.I appreciate your rebuke and look forward to your response. I will check out your website when I get a chance. Blessings to you in Christ's name!

Greetings Dan, I appreciate your taking the time to respond. Do you obey God because He is supremely worthy and demands it from every person on earth or do you obey God because you want to be saved and avoid hell? Where does the Bible tell us we have free will to decide our eternal fate? The church has a very difficult time in accepting God's sovereignty in regard to salvation. Romans 9:15-16, "For He says to Moses, 'I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.' So then it does not depend on the man who wills or the man who runs, but on God who has mercy." Please refer to blogs on "Do You Really Have Free Will?" and "Are You Weary and Heavy Laden?"

Greetings!I obey God because He has saved me and He died on the cross for my sins. I am no longer a slave to sin but a slave to obedience and to our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. I believe that nobody can come to God unless He calls us but I do believe we can reject Him. Otherwise, all the "abide in's" and "if's" are irrelevant. Jesus said, whoever loves Him will know and keep His commands and, whoever says He loves Him but doesn't do what He commands is a liar and there is no truth in him. So, we do have a choice whether to follow Him or reject Him only because He called us. But love is not forced and we choose, daily, whether to "deny yourself" or to deny Jesus.I hope that makes sense and answers your question. Blessings to you!

Greetings Dan, it is now evident that you obey God from no higher motive than to be saved or because you think you are saved, which is nothing more than a selfish gospel that the church peddles to their self-absorbed parishioners. If you can accept or reject salvation on the basis of Him who called you, then you just perverted Romans 8:29-30 which says just the opposite. God's sovereignty in calling His elect is not conditional upon you accepting or rejecting (free will) His calling, or any other outside force. God is sovereign over everything, including whom He chooses to save and whom He chooses to condemn to hell. Professing Christians continue to hang on to the lie that they are saved because they exercised their free will, when God's Word tells us just the opposite, as I have already stated in previous emails, including this one. This course of thinking is indicative of the wide road that leads to destruction according to the word of God (Matthew 7:13). I would implore you to earnestly seek the narrow way that most of humanity avoids because it is too difficult and requires self denial. Are you truly weary and heavy-laden with your sin? Dan, I challenge you to seriously meditate on some of the dumb and sinful things you have done in the past and present, as this may ignite a sense of humility which is a precursor to a contrite spirit of whom the Lord approves (Matthew 5:3).

Greetings Seeker! I am sorry you feel that way. I am following Jesus the way I see in His Word to follow Him. I hate my sin and try to fight it daily. I serve the Lord because He tells me to and I love my neighbors because God has softened my heart to have a love for them and a denial of myself. Our family was at the abortion mill in St. Paul yesterday preaching the Gospel and pleading with murderers to not murder their children. When we got done, after dinner, we went to several stores to hand out tracts and share the Gospel to the lost. We were not doing it to be saved. We were doing it because our Lord commands us to and to love our neighbors. Tragically, something that 98-99% will not do at all, according to statistics. I know that God saves who He wants to and He does not who He does not. But we don't know who those are and we are commanded to preach the Gospel and warn them and we are commanded to "rescue those being led away to death", those "crying out for mercy", the "least of these". Are you doing this? If so, are you doing it to be saved or because you are saved? Respectfully

Greetings Dan, it is not about what I feel or the way you see His Word as you just stated.  You have contradicted yourself so many times, it is now obvious you have ears but cannot hear.  It is evident your heart is uncircumcised and you are always resisting the Holy Spirit. You are placing your hope in good deeds as evidence of a changed heart when in reality you are deceiving yourself and worshiping the god of your imagination.  God's call is not to everyone, but only to His elect.  He says He will lose none.  His elect will respond through His Holy Spirit.  You do not get to decide whether you are chosen or not.  God said that He loved Jacob and hated Esau before they were ever born.  God is sovereign over all things and all people as evidenced through all of scripture.  He is a jealous God and you are dangerously close to the unpardonable sin.  I have warned you enough, please reread my comments and don't feel obligated to respond to me any longer.  This is between you and God, who is only looking for a broken and contrite spirit.


I fail to see all your accusations as being anything more than unrighteous and unfounded. So... if I obey, then I am seeking righteousness through my works and if I disobey, then I am relying on faith by grace? What do you think it is that I am contradicting and how have I contradicted myself? You make the allegation but can you show me specifically what you are referring to? Thank you and blessings!

Dan, Please reread carefully what I have already stated.  Our job is obedience.  It is up to God to save who He wills.  You do not decide to accept or reject His calling.  Doing so makes you God and is blasphemous according to His Word. If you cannot understand what has already been said according to God's Word, it is because you are blinded and there is nothing I can say to persuade you.  Please feel free to read the blog on Free Will on our website for further clarification.


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