Sinner's prayer

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by idonthavetimeforthis, Dec 14, 2010.

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Do You Use The "Sinner's Prayer" When Praying With An Individual To Be Saved?

  1. Yes, I do

    10 vote(s)
    30.3%
  2. No, I don't

    22 vote(s)
    66.7%
  3. What is a "sinner's prayer"?

    1 vote(s)
    3.0%
  1. idonthavetimeforthis

    idonthavetimeforthis
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    Hello, I'm new to this, but had a question & figured I would try to make it a poll.

    How many of you use the "sinner's prayer" when praying with one who wants to trust Christ. Why or why not?
     
  2. webdog

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    I use the model of the thief on the cross. If that isn't a sinner's prayer, I don't know what is.
    I don't do the "repeat after me" jargon. In my opinion the sinner's prayer is the first prayer of a saint, as if their heart has changed to want to even say it in the first place, they are already a new creation.
     
  3. annsni

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    We of course used to but hubby and I were talking about it and we've seen a number of people say "I said the prayer so I'm saved" but there was absolutely no change in them in the heart so we walked away from it. But then we also realized that sometimes someone just doesn't know what to say so we will "help" them but not "lead" them in a prayer but guide them instead.
     
  4. Iconoclast

    Iconoclast
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    Show the person psalm 51 a, as an example of someone who sought God's face.
    Let them deal personally and privately with God.
     
  5. Amy.G

    Amy.G
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    What is going on? We agree again! :)
     
  6. michael-acts17:11

    michael-acts17:11
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    I believe the "sinners prayer" is akin to infant baptism. There is no Biblical example on which to base its use. I have two brothers & one sister who said the sinner's prayer as children in Children's Church. Their lives have never shown the fruits of salvation & they two of them live wicked lives. Anytime I approach the topic of salvation, they go back to "the prayer" & claim assurance of salvation. I know of several others from my youth in church & christian school who are the same situation.

    The sinner's prayer is one of Satan's greatest victories. Many Baptists preach against every stupid little "sin"(preference) while ushering thousands into hell with their unScriptural traditions. I believe their will be tens of thousands of people in hell who think they're headed to heaven based on the word of misguided preachers with unScriptural methods. NO man has the authority to proclaim another person as saved. The Spirit bears witness with the spirit of man & conveys TRUE salvation to those who BELIEVE.
     
  7. convicted1

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    Why not? John Hagee does it all the time and look at how big his church is! Tongue planted firmly in cheek!

    Each one needs to let this be between them and God. Man gets in the way, way too many times. God will do what He needs to, without someone trying to do it for Him.

    Willis
     
  8. JohnDeereFan

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    I don't think the Sinners' Prayer is a bad thing, in and of itself. All it really is is a simple way to codify the repentance and faith required for salvation.

    That said, I also think it can be dangerous to give someone a pre-packaged prayer (even a well intentioned one). It can be too easy to focus on the words of the prayer as a means to salvation, it can lead to a misunderstanding of salvation, it can lead to a conversion experience caused by emotion, and, worst of all, it can give false assurance of salvation to a person who may not be saved. As a result of any one of these things, it's a good way to make a false convert and to innoculate a person against the Gospel later on, because they believe they're good to go, having said the prayer.

    So, even though I think it's well intentioned and wouldn't call anyone who uses it a heretic, I wouldn't use it. It's just not a wise way to go about it.

    I am much more a fan of making sure a person knows the Gospel, knows that they're a sinner, and allowing them to seek God privately (although I would never turn down a request to pray with them, if asked), something along the lines of what Iconoclast suggested.
     
  9. glfredrick

    glfredrick
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    I used to, but I've gotten over it. In some sense, the person wishing come to Christ must follow God's leading and play a role in the process, but the mere uttering of words is not what makes it happen. Depending on the individual, I may ask if they want to pray and ask God to show Himself real, etc., but the act of salvation is not really nailed down via a single prayer, or lack of a single prayer.
     
  10. Iconoclast

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    Go Vols..........lol:wavey:
     
  11. Havensdad

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    Amen, bro.

    The "repeat after me" sinner's prayer has unleashed HAVOC on the Church. It has no basis in Biblical fact. The Bible says "Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved," not "pray this prayer."
     
  12. Tom Butler

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    Wow, this is making my day. I thought I was almost alone on this board in viewing the Sinner's Prayer as manipulative and unbiblical.

    Let me say this. I have no doubt that if a lost sinner cries out to God for mercy, God will hear him.

    But the SP has too many times been corrupted into "say this prayer," "pray something like this," or, "repeat after me".

    Or, "say these magic words." Then we follow up by asking "now, did you really, really, really mean it?" If the answer is yes, then we say, "based on your prayer, I now declare you saved, and don't let anybody ever convince you otherwise."

    One of the most chilling sentences I have ever heard was this response to the question, what is your hope of heaven? "Well, I said the prayer."

    That said, I do believe that God has saved some who prayed the prayer. But not because they prayed the prayer, but because they cried out for mercy in repentance and faith. They put into words what was already in their hearts. They confessed with their mouths.
     
  13. Luke2427

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    Nope. It's not in the Bible- but that doesn't mean it is not useful. Sunday School is not in the Bible, air conditioning is not in the Bible and music in the worship service is not in the New Testament- but I am for all of these things.

    But I do not use the sinner's prayer anymore. As a matter of fact, I don't even hardly use the altar call. We've baptized nine this year and only one of them came to the altar to pray.

    For hundreds of years there was no "sinner's prayer" or altar call. The church had this novel idea that if you preach the Gospel God will do the work in the heart of men and they will respond accordingly. That's what has been happening the last four years of my ministry.
     
  14. Jerome

    Jerome
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    Invitation time at the Metropolitan Tabernacle:

    Charles Spurgeon, "A Free Grace Promise" (1888):

     
  15. pinoybaptist

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    no. nunca.
     
  16. blackbird

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    I don't use the "Sinner's Prayer"

    I had a lady come wanting to talk with me----said she didn't know whether she was saved or not

    I thought

    "Good gracious!! Lets see whats going on here!!"

    So I asked her why she felt that way

    "Because I have never prayed the "Sinner's Prayer"!!!"

    So I took her to Romans 10:9 and asked her

    Who is Lord of her life----Jesus is Lord of my life

    Do you believe with all your heart that God raised Jesus from the dead??

    Yes---I do!! I believe with all my heart that God raised Jesus from the dead!!!

    Then I asked her----"Then why are you worried about praying a "Sinner's Prayer" for???"

    "That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in thy heart that God hath raise Him from the dead thou shalt be saved"--Romans 10:9
     
  17. idonthavetimeforthis

    idonthavetimeforthis
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    I appreciate the replies. I have heard a lot of reasons for not using it, but what about those of you who do - is it because you've always done it that way or you were taught to do it that way, or is there a Biblical justification?

    Luke (and anyone else for that matter), I'm interested to here about your altar calls - do you do an invitation after the message? If so, how long, is there a song, do folks stand & close eyes, etc.
     
  18. quantumfaith

    quantumfaith
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    :thumbs::thumbs::thumbs:
     
  19. quantumfaith

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    Ditto Amy, will miracles never cease!!!!!
     
  20. Tom Butler

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    My concern is not the use of the Sinner's Prayer--it's the abuse of it. I don't have a problem telling a sinner, "do you want to be saved? Then ask God to do save you." And then,

    SHUT UP!

    If I have done my job in correctly presenting the gospel (and I still like the Roman Road), then he'll have no trouble finding the words. He will not need for me to tell him what to say, or to repeat what I say.

    Once you have called for a response to your witness, then get out of the way.

    When the Holy Spirit brought me under conviction, and I headed down the aisle to my pastor, he asked a series of questions:

    Why are you coming?
    Do you understand that you are a sinner?
    Do you understand that you deserve to go to hell?
    Do you repent of your sin?
    Do you trust Christ and him alone to save you?

    If the sinner doesn't understand the terms you use, stop. You haven't done your job well enough, or the Holy Spirit has not finished his illuminating work.

    Do not put pressure on the sinner for a "decision." The Holy Spirit is perfectly capable of handling things.

    That does not mean there can't be an urgency to your message. There's a difference between urgency and a high-pressure sales pitch. And besides, you want him to trust Christ willingly.
     

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