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Can a Prayer Alone save someone?

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  • Can a Prayer Alone save someone?

    What scripture supports or contradicts the popular teaching that a prayer recited by a convert will gain them entrance into Heaven?

  • #2
    As a long time Particular Baptist, I strongly believe in the old saying “Faith Alone saves, but Saving Faith is never alone.”
    So while there has been a lot of abuse of the “Once Saved, Always Saved” and “Sinner’s Prayer” types of evangelism, I actually do believe that there is a great deal of truth contained within the abuses of “pop-religion”.

    In support of the argument that one IS saved by prayer prior to any dunking or sprinkling, I offer the following scripture:

    [Romans 10:8-13 NASB] 8 But what does it say? "THE WORD IS NEAR YOU, IN YOUR MOUTH AND IN YOUR HEART"--that is, the word of faith which we are preaching, 9 that if you confess with your mouth Jesus [as] Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; 10 for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation. 11 For the Scripture says, "WHOEVER BELIEVES IN HIM WILL NOT BE DISAPPOINTED." 12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same [Lord] is Lord of all, abounding in riches for all who call on Him; 13 for "WHOEVER WILL CALL ON THE NAME OF THE LORD WILL BE SAVED."

    Comment


    • #3
      Acts 10 Cornelius was a righteous man (verse 22), "a devout man, and one that feared God with all his house, which gave much alms to the people, and prayed to God alway" (verse 2) yet he was lost. He could only be saved by hearing the gospel (Acts 11:14) and obey it (Acts 10:47-48).
      1 Jn 3:10......... whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God.........

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by atpollard View Post
        As a long time Particular Baptist, I strongly believe in the old saying “Faith Alone saves, but Saving Faith is never alone.”
        So while there has been a lot of abuse of the “Once Saved, Always Saved” and “Sinner’s Prayer” types of evangelism, I actually do believe that there is a great deal of truth contained within the abuses of “pop-religion”.

        In support of the argument that one IS saved by prayer prior to any dunking or sprinkling, I offer the following scripture:

        [Romans 10:8-13 NASB] 8 But what does it say? "THE WORD IS NEAR YOU, IN YOUR MOUTH AND IN YOUR HEART"--that is, the word of faith which we are preaching, 9 that if you confess with your mouth Jesus [as] Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; 10 for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation. 11 For the Scripture says, "WHOEVER BELIEVES IN HIM WILL NOT BE DISAPPOINTED." 12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same [Lord] is Lord of all, abounding in riches for all who call on Him; 13 for "WHOEVER WILL CALL ON THE NAME OF THE LORD WILL BE SAVED."
        Actually you can find verses that appear to support a number of different things as apparent paths to salvation:

        Charity (alone?):

        ‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.’ . . .‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’ Matthew 35:35-40

        Faith of others:

        . . . Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house. Acts 16:31

        (Note that believe in the Greek text is singular, not plural.)

        Forgiving others (alone?):

        For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father also will forgive you; but if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.
        Matthew 6:14-15

        Faithful deeds are essential:

        What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save them? . . .Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by my deeds. You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder. James 2:14-19

        Eucharist is essential:

        Jesus said to them, “Very truly I tell you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day. For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in them. Just as the living Father sent me and I live because of the Father, so the one who feeds on me will live because of me. John 6:53-57

        Confession is essential:

        If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9

        The list goes on. . .

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Theophilos View Post

          Actually you can find verses that appear to support a number of different things as apparent paths to salvation:

          Charity (alone?):

          ‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.’ . . .‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’ Matthew 35:35-40

          Faith of others:

          . . . Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house. Acts 16:31

          (Note that believe in the Greek text is singular, not plural.)

          Forgiving others (alone?):

          For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father also will forgive you; but if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.
          Matthew 6:14-15

          Faithful deeds are essential:

          What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save them? . . .Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by my deeds. You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder. James 2:14-19

          Eucharist is essential:

          Jesus said to them, “Very truly I tell you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day. For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in them. Just as the living Father sent me and I live because of the Father, so the one who feeds on me will live because of me. John 6:53-57

          Confession is essential:

          If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9

          The list goes on. . .
          While interesting, your post is a bit of a rabbit trail to the question in the opening post. I still have no idea from your post if you claim that those scriptures either support salvation via a “sinner’s prayer” or contradict the teaching of salvation via a “sinner’s prayer”. Taken at face value, you seem to simply be claiming that salvation is unknowable because scripture is full of self-contradictions (which was probably not the point you wanted to make).

          So what point were you trying to make?
          Please clarify.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Seabass View Post
            Acts 10 Cornelius was a righteous man (verse 22), "a devout man, and one that feared God with all his house, which gave much alms to the people, and prayed to God alway" (verse 2) yet he was lost. He could only be saved by hearing the gospel (Acts 11:14) and obey it (Acts 10:47-48).
            Great post.
            I can see how that could indicate that prayer without works of obedience could be inadequate (in much the same way that Ephesians 2:1-9 talk all about what GOD has done and ends in Ephesians 2:10 with the proclamation that the saved WILL DO good works, or James speaks of faith without works being a dead faith).

            Just for conversation, I could suggest another way to view Cornelius and Acts 10. Nobody was ever saved by obeying the Law and nobody was ever saved without faith in Jesus Christ. Cornelius was like the followers of John the Baptist, devout followers of God unsaved by the Law but primed for the arrival of the Messiah. So all his OT prayers did not save him, buy meeting Jesus did ... just like us.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by atpollard View Post
              As a long time Particular Baptist, I strongly believe in the old saying “Faith Alone saves, but Saving Faith is never alone.”
              which is just a saying but not scripture...


              So while there has been a lot of abuse of the “Once Saved, Always Saved” and “Sinner’s Prayer” types of evangelism, I actually do believe that there is a great deal of truth contained within the abuses of “pop-religion”.
              As if what one believe becomes the truth because they believe it...

              In support of the argument that one IS saved by prayer prior to any dunking or sprinkling, I offer the following scripture:

              [Romans 10:8-13 NASB] 8 But what does it say? "THE WORD IS NEAR YOU, IN YOUR MOUTH AND IN YOUR HEART"--that is, the word of faith which we are preaching, 9 that if you confess with your mouth Jesus [as] Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; 10 for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation. 11 For the Scripture says, "WHOEVER BELIEVES IN HIM WILL NOT BE DISAPPOINTED." 12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same [Lord] is Lord of all, abounding in riches for all who call on Him; 13 for "WHOEVER WILL CALL ON THE NAME OF THE LORD WILL BE SAVED."
              Which would be out of context... since Paul is speaking to people who are already baptized...
              Why didn't Peter ask the to say a sinners prayer in Acts 2....37 Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?
              38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Theophilos View Post

                Actually you can find verses that appear to support a number of different things as apparent paths to salvation:

                Charity (alone?):

                ‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.’ . . .‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’ Matthew 35:35-40

                Faith of others:

                . . . Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house. Acts 16:31

                (Note that believe in the Greek text is singular, not plural.)

                Forgiving others (alone?):

                For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father also will forgive you; but if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.
                Matthew 6:14-15

                Faithful deeds are essential:

                What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save them? . . .Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by my deeds. You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder. James 2:14-19

                Eucharist is essential:

                Jesus said to them, “Very truly I tell you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day. For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in them. Just as the living Father sent me and I live because of the Father, so the one who feeds on me will live because of me. John 6:53-57

                Confession is essential:

                If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9

                The list goes on. . .
                Lol
                . this was supposed to be an easy question...What scripture supports or contradicts the popular teaching that a prayer recited by a convert will gain them entrance into Heaven?

                obviously the question is too broad and does not deal with the sinner's prayer being in the scripture or not ...it simply stated a prayer... which could be any prayer..
                You are stating your view as to what prayers may be directly involved in your salvation...I understand your position

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by atpollard View Post

                  While interesting, your post is a bit of a rabbit trail to the question in the opening post.
                  not really... your OP is not specific enough... it's very broad
                  I still have no idea from your post if you claim that those scriptures either support salvation via a “sinner’s prayer” or contradict the teaching of salvation via a “sinner’s prayer”.
                  And he has no idea from the OP that you are specifically speaking about the sinner's prayer because you didn't mention it...

                  Taken at face value, you seem to simply be claiming that salvation is unknowable because scripture is full of self-contradictions (which was probably not the point you wanted to make).
                  That is what you see at face value... because you don't know what he saw in your OP at face value...
                  So what point were you trying to make?
                  Please clarify.
                  He is supporting prayer as an integral part of the salvation process... that is all... Maybe he responded to what he gleaned from the OP...

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by newbirth View Post
                    which is just a saying but not scripture...
                    I said it was a saying, so what is your point?

                    As if what one believe becomes the truth because they believe it...
                    Something YOU might do well to remember concerning YOUR snarky opinions.


                    Which would be out of context... since Paul is speaking to people who are already baptized...
                    Why didn't Peter ask the to say a sinners prayer in Acts 2....37 Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?
                    38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
                    You set the standard that “opinions” have no place in the discussion between you and I, so please just present the SCRIPTURE that proves all of your claims and save your opinions for someone else. You claim to have no interest in my opinions, so I should not need to have your opinions inflicted on me either.

                    I could answer your question, but it would involve exegesis, which is more than just posting scripture, so ...

                    You are wrong about Peter and Pentecost, read Acts 2 ... the answer is in the scripture.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by newbirth View Post
                      not really... your OP is not specific enough... it's very broad

                      And he has no idea from the OP that you are specifically speaking about the sinner's prayer because you didn't mention it...

                      That is what you see at face value... because you don't know what he saw in your OP at face value...

                      He is supporting prayer as an integral part of the salvation process... that is all... Maybe he responded to what he gleaned from the OP...
                      The OP is about Prayer and salvation. YOU never actually defined what a “Sinner’s Prayer” is. However, it should be obvious that ...

                      CHARITY is not a prayer.

                      the FAITH OF OTHERS is not a prayer.

                      FORGIVING OTHERS is not a prayer.

                      FAITHFUL DEEDS are not a prayer.

                      the EUCHARIST is not a prayer.

                      CONFESSION may be a prayer.

                      So of the 6 things mentioned in his post, only 1 has the possibility of being any sort of prayer. Even if my definition of PRAYER was too broad for your approval (and who cares, you already have a topic with your questions how you wanted them worded), his response was not based on any confusion about the definition of prayer. So let’s let him respond and you could at least try to be right before you attempt to correct me.

                      How is your 600 post topic going?
                      Are you getting answers to your OP questions?


                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by atpollard View Post
                        The OP is about Prayer and salvation. YOU never actually defined what a “Sinner’s Prayer” is. However, it should be obvious that ...

                        CHARITY is not a prayer.

                        the FAITH OF OTHERS is not a prayer.

                        FORGIVING OTHERS is not a prayer.

                        FAITHFUL DEEDS are not a prayer.

                        the EUCHARIST is not a prayer.

                        CONFESSION may be a prayer.

                        So of the 6 things mentioned in his post, only 1 has the possibility of being any sort of prayer. Even if my definition of PRAYER was too broad for your approval (and who cares, you already have a topic with your questions how you wanted them worded), his response was not based on any confusion about the definition of prayer. So let’s let him respond and you could at least try to be right before you attempt to correct me.
                        Yes, a point is that a simple formula based on a few selected verses can be misleading.

                        As far as the question in the OP consider this verse:

                        Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Matthew 7:21

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by atpollard View Post
                          The OP is about Prayer and salvation.
                          which is totally different from My OP which you believe you can do better than me...
                          YOU never actually defined what a “Sinner’s Prayer” is.
                          I didn't have to...so only people who understand what the sinner's prayer is would respond...
                          However, it should be obvious that ...

                          CHARITY is not a prayer.

                          the FAITH OF OTHERS is not a prayer.

                          FORGIVING OTHERS is not a prayer.

                          FAITHFUL DEEDS are not a prayer.

                          the EUCHARIST is not a prayer.

                          CONFESSION may be a prayer.
                          but they are all things that one can pray for... Your OP does not reflect what specific information you are asking for...

                          So of the 6 things mentioned in his post, only 1 has the possibility of being any sort of prayer.
                          that is how you understand what you read...
                          Even if my definition of PRAYER was too broad for your approval (and who cares, you already have a topic with your questions how you wanted them worded)[
                          this has nothing to do with my approval.. obviously the reader didn't understand your post..As for my topic you claimed that your OP would be better suited for answers regarding the sinner's prayer... Clearly you started a train wreck

                          , his response was not based on any confusion about the definition of prayer. So let’s let him respond and you could at least try to be right before you attempt to correct me.
                          anyone can see it's some kind of confusion... You even called it rabbit trails..
                          How is your 600 post topic going?
                          Are you getting answers to your OP questions?
                          I am not expecting any... since there is no scripture that says we can be saved by the sinner's prayer..

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by atpollard View Post
                            I said it was a saying, so what is your point?
                            my point is that this is a bible discussion forum...not an any old saying discussion forum
                            Something YOU might do well to remember concerning YOUR snarky opinions.
                            we are not discussing my opinions...we are discussing the scripture this is the forum for it

                            You set the standard that “opinions” have no place in the discussion between you and I, so please just present the SCRIPTURE that proves all of your claims and save your opinions for someone else.
                            [
                            We are not discussing opinions everyone has opinions which they are free to state... but we are discussing the scripture... does the scripture say that one can be saved by repeating the sinner's prayer??if it does please show me where

                            You claim to have no interest in my opinions, so I should not need to have your opinions inflicted on me either.
                            Just ignore the opinions and answer the questions about what is and what isn't in the scripture
                            I could answer your question, but it would involve exegesis, which is more than just posting scripture, so ...
                            No you can't answer my question because it involves showing me scripture... not your opinion
                            You are wrong about Peter and Pentecost, read Acts 2 ... the answer is in the scripture.
                            Am I wrong... Was Phillip wrong also??? What about Peter with Cornelius was he wrong to command him and his household to be baptized after they had already received the holy Spirit???...why didn't he command them to recite the sinner's prayer???

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Seabass View Post
                              Acts 10 Cornelius was a righteous man (verse 22), "a devout man, and one that feared God with all his house, which gave much alms to the people, and prayed to God alway" (verse 2) yet he was lost. He could only be saved by hearing the gospel (Acts 11:14) and obey it (Acts 10:47-48).
                              But no mention of reciting the sinner's prayer

                              Comment

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