The Very First Conversion

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by bmerr, Aug 30, 2005.

  1. bmerr

    bmerr
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    To All,

    bmerr here. Ususally when we think of conversion, we think of a sinner being converted to Christ. But "conversion" is really just a turning from one way to another. So where do we find the first conversion?

    Genesis 3.

    We find at the end of Gen 2, Adam and Eve, the first couple, in perfect harmony with God, innocent and pure in their Maker's eyes. All is going fine, until a preacher shows up. Not a sound preacher, but a preacher all the same.

    This preacher is in the form of a serpent, and he's preaching a message contrary to the word of God. He calls into question the provision of God, and the word of God in one breath.

    Eve tells the preacher what she knows God said, but the preacher denies God's word, going on to convince her that God has been holding out on them, and that things would be better if they did things differently than how God had commanded.

    Eve considers the preacher's argument. She sees the fruit is nice to look at, and has been convinced that it would be better for her and her husband if they followed what the preacher was saying, instead of what God had commanded.

    Question: Were Adam and Eve cast out of the garden of Eden at this point? Were they banished for simply hearing and believing the lies of this preacher? Did they lose paradise by "faith only"?

    No, but what happened next? Eve acted on her new faith, and convinced her husband to do likewise. Then, the half-truths of the false preacher were realized. Their eyes were opened, just like the preacher had said they would be. But they were now sinners. They had transgressed the commandment of God.

    Now, after God pronounced curses on Adam, Eve, and the preacher, after Adam and Eve's faith in the word of the serpent was made known by works, God drove out the man from the garden, placing cherubims, and a flaming sword to keep the way of the tree of life.

    So the first conversion was not by "faith only", but by faith conjoined with corresponding works. A pattern is seen: hearing, believing, obeying.

    This same pattern is demonstrated over and over in the NT book of Acts, as sinners are converted by hearing the gospel, believing the gospel, and obeying the gospel.

    Anyone ever looked at it like that before?

    In Christ,

    bmerr
     
  2. Miss22

    Miss22
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    Obeying the gospel means simply to believe it.
     
  3. steaver

    steaver
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    They didn't convert. They sinned.

    Conversion for the NT believer is when he/she is born again by the Spirit. It is recieving the Holy Spirit. Something that had not been done prior to the death, burial, resurrection and ascention of Jesus Christ. It is the "new covenant" spoken of in Hebrews 8.

    God Bless!
     
  4. bmerr

    bmerr
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    Miss22,

    bmerr here. Rom 6:17-18 says,

    17 But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed that form of doctrine which was delivered you.

    18 Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness.

    Paul, in 1 Cor 15:3-4 tells us what the doctrine he delivered was.

    3 For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died according to the scriptures;

    4 And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to hte scriptures:

    So the doctrine that was delivered to the Romans was the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ. Paul said that when the Romans had obeyed a form of the gospel, they were then made free from sin.

    What would you say is something commanded in the NT that is a form, or picture, of the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ?

    Does only believing fit the description of a death, burial, and resurrection? I don't know any who could honestly answer, "yes".

    We have a need to determine just what it means to "obey the gospel", though. 2 Thes 1:8-9 tells us that Jesus will return in flaming fire, taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ, and that such will be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power.

    Obeying the gospel is serious business.

    In Christ,

    bmerr
     
  5. steaver

    steaver
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    There you have it! a "form or picture" of an outward expression declaring an inward circumcision of the heart which was performed by God.

    One who understands the Scriptures that being born again is an act of God can honestly answer "yes". It has nothing to do with taking a dip in the water. The instant one calls on Jesus Christ from the heart they are born again saved. They need not wait until they find some water.

    God Bless! [​IMG]
     
  6. bmerr

    bmerr
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    steaver,

    bmerr here. The Bible says that the Romans were made free from sin when they obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine delivered them (Rom 6:17). Baptism is a form of the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ. Baptism is a NT command that must be obeyed (Acts 9:6; 22:16).

    But you brought up the circumcision of the heart, which is performed by God. So when does God perform it? Col 2:11-12 says,

    11 In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ:

    12 Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised hiim from the dead.

    We are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands when we are buried and raised with Christ in baptism. It is an act of faith in the operation of God. Baptism is not the declaration of the inward circumcision of the heart. Baptism is where this circumcision takes place.

    It is in this way that a sinner (one who has already turned from God by committing sin), is converted (turns again; Acts 3:19 ASV) to God and becomes a Christian.

    Can you show an example of a NT conversion that was accomplished without obedience to the gospel? Is there even one account of a conversion by "faith only"?

    And for all the talk about "being born again has nothing to do with water", there sure are lots of people being baptized in the book of Acts, which is (in part) a book of conversions.

    In Christ,

    bmerr
     
  7. bmerr

    bmerr
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    steaver,

    bmerr here. The Bible says that the Romans were made free from sin when they obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine delivered them (Rom 6:17). Baptism is a form of the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ. Baptism is a NT command that must be obeyed (Acts 9:6; 22:16).

    But you brought up the circumcision of the heart, which is performed by God. So when does God perform it? Col 2:11-12 says,

    11 In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ:

    12 Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised hiim from the dead.

    We are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands when we are buried and raised with Christ in baptism. It is an act of faith in the operation of God. Baptism is not the declaration of the inward circumcision of the heart. Baptism is where this circumcision takes place.

    It is in this way that a sinner (one who has already turned from God by committing sin), is converted (turns again; Acts 3:19 ASV) to God and becomes a Christian.

    Can you show an example of a NT conversion that was accomplished without obedience to the gospel? Is there even one account of a conversion by "faith only"?

    And for all the talk about "being born again has nothing to do with water", there sure are lots of people being baptized in the book of Acts, which is (in part) a book of conversions.

    In Christ,

    bmerr
     

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