You Cannot Be Saved by Following



God does want us to live by grace and to produce good works by grace through faith in Jesus and by His Spirit. But He does -not- want us to rely on those works in any way to be saved, or to prove that we are saved.

We know that we are saved for Heaven and forgiven of all sins through simply believing in Christ crucified and resurrected (1st Corinthians 15:1-4).

I believe that the False Gospel must be exposed when the true biblical Gospel is being preached, because the False Gospel has infected many, probably most, American churches.

Having lived in both Texas (18 years ago) and Arizona (10 years ago), for whatever reason, I found that most of the churches there were very strong in the true Gospe

l of salvation through faith in Jesus. (Each church must be checked out individually.)

But most churches today teach some form of salvation by works.

I wish it weren’t like this and I wish people in America were spiritually safe in the most important matter (the saving Gospel) when they walk in to a “Christian” church. But they are not.

Preachers are preaching “follow Christ,” “make a commitment to Christ,” and “change your life” as the way to be saved. Or they preach: “repent of your sins and believe in Christ.” Or they tell you to look at your life and your works to determine if you are a true and saved believer. All of these are salvation by works, not salvation by faith in Christ.

What we need to repent of is -unbelief-. We simply need to believe that Jesus the God-man died on the cross for our sins, and was resurrected from the dead on the third day.

This is the saving Gospel message clearly taught, over and over, in Scripture.

The Lordship Salvation False Doctrine is the most dangerous false doctrine ever, in my opinion, because it is so widespread in American churches, because it blocks people from the true Gospel, and because it uses Jesus and so many biblical truths in its presentation.

In the quote below, Tom Cucuzza makes a great point along these lines.

–Curtis Smale

In his sermon entitled “Living in Light of Our Redemption”, delivered March 10, 2013, Tom Cucuzza discussed the use of the term “follower of Christ”, and how it communicates the wrong message. Following is a pertinent excerpt:

Minutes 41:10- 42:30

We don’t talk about believers anymore. Well, we do, ‘cause that’s what the Bible calls us. But, you know what? Because of the huge impact that those who are preaching Lordship salvation, which is works for salvation, because of the huge impact they’re having on Christendom today, the new buzzword is “followers of Christ.”

You hear that a lot – followers of Christ? A follower of Christ. Where’s the emphasis there? It’s on how you’re living, right? Not what you believe, but how you’re living. There are people who have followed the moral teachings of scripture their whole lives, who when they die, they won’t go to Heaven. They have followed the Sermon on the Mount as best they can. I’ve had people tell me “I’m going to Heaven.” Why? “Because I follow the Sermon on the Mount.” And I’m thinking, “no you don’t. No, you don’t. You can’t. It’s an ideal. It’s great. There are great principles there. I believe them. But, you know what? If you’re going to follow that, you’re gonna have to be perfect, and none of us are. You’re not gonna make it there by that.”

So, when somebody says, “oh, they’re a follower of Jesus”, my question is “what do you mean by that?” Well, usually they’ll say “well, they follow the teachings of Jesus.” Well, that has to do with how you live. Are you gonna get to Heaven by how you live? No. You get to Heaven by faith in Christ.

Sent from my iPad

8 Replies to “You Cannot Be Saved by Following”

  1. Thanks Curtis. I live in Germany and it’s the same here. In the City of Berlin, where I live, there are several churches which are connected to the EBTC which is (so to say) the european arm of John MacArthur. Several of their preachers went through Master’s Seminary in the US. And that Empire is growing and greatly admired here.
    Wherever I look around in my country it seems there is only calvinism or arminianism and Lordship “Salvation”, besides many other spiritual diseases like charismatic churches for example.
    I left the MacArthurian calvinistic Lordship-“Salvation”-church I had attendet (which preaches the Gospel correct but then backloads it with works as evidence of salvation, strong tendency to worksrighteousness) and now it seems impossible for me to find a new church which is doctrinally sound according to the true gospel of the bible. Under these circumstances it’s hard to grow in grace. Very sad.
    God bless

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Karsten. Very encouraging to hear from you. I agree the situation is dismal. I have been to 30 churches over the last few years, I got barred from one, and asked to leave another. There are only two more I want to check out, then it is Internet fellowship, and starting my own fellowship. I took German for I think 4 years. I am half German, but have never been there. God bless you and PLEASE keep commenting and being a part of this online fellowship. Thank you. – Curtis


  2. I read your articls with bible. my granma gave me my bible. I love it. it is east you understand the words and tell comentary for me to live as Jesus. I read a lot here today on your site that confuse and make me scared. I wish you would anser me th e questions I asked. I am full of dout now and don’t know if I know Jesus anymore or my grandmma and all my family and friends to! because you say only believe, but I lestin in when in my church and hilight the bible for important lessons. Pastor Larry teache about when the bible says to work out your salvation with great fear! Why be affraid is you are saved? Why does Jesus say to people that they are saved because of feeding people and giveing clothes to naked ones? I am look at my hilights and i ask you why you say what Jesus does not to say. My grandma tells me make the bible say anything if they don’t tell many verses just a little bit verses. I think you are nece man. please help me to know why my grandma deosn’t go to Heaven.


    1. We work out our salvation, but we have to be saved first to work it out. We are afraid to offend God. We don’t need to be afraid that we are not saved if we believe in Jesus.


  3. I chat with paser Larry and he make me to read Epesiuns 5. This verses say to believer that he has to be very good or can’t go into Heaven. I must stop since Im crying. is my Pstor go to hell? I hope you reed my questions soohn. I don’t know what to do or hoo to delieve!


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