Real Conversion

In the post on October 6th Thomas Schreiner is quoted as saying: “The ultimate reason for a mission to the Gentiles was not the salvation of the Gentiles but the proclamation of the name of Jesus Christ.” And John MacArthur, “The decision of yielding, surrendering and then acting, is between the hearer and God, not between the hearer and the preacher.”

Thanks to Nath at Reformed Geek there are two videos of Paul Washer preaching on true conversion and puts into words some thoughts I’ve had recently.

If anyone can find any Scripture supporting alter calls or praying the sinner’s prayer let me know.

5 Responses to “Real Conversion”


  1. 1 pedro juan valdez's donkey

    We need to do a word study on ‘receive’ as used in John 1:12. Humbly, I am of the persuasion that one would do no hermeneutical harm to scripture or doctrine to suggest that the New Testament people this verse refers to did in fact express saving faith, and expressed said faith in prayer. This being the case, albeit alleged, who was the prayer being offered by, but a sinner? Hence the sinner’s prayer. The further leap of logic then would be to proffer the idea that these prayers were said in private with no outside abetting. Which idea, in refuting it, would lead us to see then what we see today; pastors (or whoever) giving a sinner languishing under a load of conviction the firm understanding of an even firmer promise of salvation, and assistance in obtaining the gifts of said promise by praying with them the sinner’s prayer.

  2. 2 ScriptureZealot

    I have so many thoughts and questions regarding this I won’t be able to write them all down.

    For of all Colossians 2:6-7 * is another example of the word received being used.

    I would think that many would express this faith in prayer but this wouldn’t be necessary. My own conversion came about as a result of reading the book of John. I came to believe without saying a prayer or praying about salvation. Later on, but when I was still a new Christian, I learned about the sinner’s prayer and prayed it just to make sure I “did it right”.

    I came across 1 Corinthians 12:3 which says, ‘Therefore I want you to understand that no one speaking by the Spirit of God ever says “Let Jesus be cursed!” and no one can say “Jesus is Lord” except by the Holy Spirit.’

    I would say that the Holy Spirit prompts us first, then we respond. If we “decide” or pray first without truly believing or receiving the Holy Spirit, we may be on rocky ground which is what I think Washer is saying in the audio.

    Those are my thoughts right now which might not be exactly coherent or be directly in response to what pedro is saying.

    *looks like the word receive is slightly different in Colossians than in John.

    From John 1:12
    G2983
    lam-ban’-o
    A prolonged form of a primary verb, which is used only as an alternate in certain tenses; to take (in very many applications, literally and figuratively [probably objective or active, to get hold of; whereas G1209 is rather subjective or passive, to have offered to one; while G138 is more violent, to seize or remove]): – accept, + be amazed, assay, attain, bring, X when I call, catch, come on (X unto), + forget, have, hold, obtain, receive (X after), take (away, up).

    From Colossians 2:6
    par-al-am-ban’-o
    From G3844 and G2983; to receive near, that is, associate with oneself (in any familiar or intimate act or relation); by analogy to assume an office; figuratively to learn: – receive, take (unto, with).

  3. 3 Nath @ Reformed Geek

    If a husband is caught in adultery, and is repentant and is attempting to reconcile with his wife would you consider his sorrow sincere if I had to lead him in his apology to her?

    There is nothing wrong with praying to God and asking for forgiveness. There is something wrong with trusting in that prayer, or having to have someone lead them in it. If someone understands the gospel and the Spirit of God is working on them then they can (without leading) cry out to God pleading for mercy.

    Remember, if we would not except a husband being lead in an apology to his estranged wife, then how much more a fallen sinful creature to their all powerful, holy and righteous Creator?

  4. 4 ScriptureZealot

    Thanks for the note of clarification. I feel like for now I have a basic Biblical understanding of this whole thing but will keep this issue in mind as I go through the rest of the NT and then back to the Gospels.

  5. 5 ScriptureZealot

    More on the word received from Vincent’s Word Studies .

    John 1:12
    Received (ἔλαβον)
    The simple verb of the compound παρέλαβον in John 1:11. The meaning of the two verbs is substantially the same (so Alford, De Wette, and apparently Meyer), though some recognize a difference, as Milligan and Moulton, who render παρέλαβον accepted, and ἔλαβον received, and say that “the former lays emphasis upon the will that consented (or refused) to receive, while the latter brings before us the possession gained: so that the full meaning is, As many as by accepting Him, received Him.” For the use of the simple verb, see John 5:43; John 13:20; John 19:6.

    If you can’t see the Greek words go here http://www.bibleworks.com/fonts.html for the Greek and Hebrew fonts.

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