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Theology

God-Centered Salvation & Evangelism

Some years ago I put together an updated version of the classic TULIP that is used in many reformed circles.  I changed the acronym to PRAISE which gives six points rather than five!
I included an “E” for extending the Kingdom through evangelism!  While many modern Saints question whether reformers who study John Calvin believe they need to share the Good News, strong evangelism and missionary work was one of the great hallmarks of the Reformation.  I included various proof texts for further study, which in some cases are entire chapters because I believe that the reformed faith is the solid teaching of the Scriptures and would challenge all of us to be Good Bereans, taking everything that is shared back to the Scriptures to see what is true.

“All Thy works shall PRAISE Thee, O LORD!”  Psalm 145:9

[there are over 100 references to God’s praise in the Book of Psalms alone!]

 

God-Centered Salvation & Evangelism

But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us,  even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved),  and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus,  that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.  For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God,  not of works, lest anyone should boast. 
For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.”      Ephesians 2:4-10

 

P R A I S E !

 

‘P’ is for:   The Plight of Man!                                         A Reality

In the Garden of Eden, God gave Adam a real choice, with real consequences:  Eternal life with God or death.  His wrong choice left mankind ‘dead in their trespasses and sin.”  Without God, man’s estate was truly hopeless with “none that seek after righteousness, no not one.”  By understanding the truly bad news we see the need for the True Savior.

Scriptures for further study:  Genesis 1-3; Romans 1:17 – 3:20; Titus 3:3-8; Galatians 3:21-23; Jeremiah 17:9; Ezekiel 37

 

‘R’ is for:  The Resolve of Our Triune God!                                              A Mystery

God’s eternal plan is to demonstrate his great mercy and love through the salvation of His saints and His justice with the punishment of the wicked. While a full understanding of God’s purposes is beyond our understanding, we do see the end of the matter, “For of Him and through Him, and to Him are all things, to whom be glory forever.- Amen.”

Scriptures for further study:  Ephesians 1:1-14; II Corinthians 1:3-11; Romans 9-11; Colossians 1:9-13; Isaiah 53 & 55; Deuteronomy 29:29

 

‘A’ is for:  Applying the Work of Jesus!                      A Wonder

God could not “wink” at sin, but had to maintain His justice while justifying those chosen to be saved.
To accomplish this work of salvation, God the Son became flesh “to save His people from their sin.” He lived a perfect life; took the punishment of our sins on the cross, was raised in power.  He now sits at the right hand of God the Father as King of Kings and Lord of Lords.

Scriptures for further study:  Matthew 1:21; John 17; Romans 3:21 – 4:25; I Corinthians 1:1-11; II Corinthians 5:21; Philippians 2: 1-11; Colossians 1:14-22; Hebrews [yes, the whole book!]

 

‘I’ is for:  Inclusion Through the Holy Spirit!                      A Mission

God the Holy Spirit provides the gift of faith & new hearts for God’s people, giving us the power to repent of our sins, live lives of obedience and to be protected in this life from the devil, the world and our own flesh. It is in the Book of Acts where we learn about His great work where He unites God’s people to Christ, as the earth is filled with the Kingdom of Jesus.

Scriptures for further study:  The Book of Acts; John 3:1-21; Galatians 5; Ephesians 2:1-10

 

‘S’ is for:  Secure in the Hand of God!                                A Blessing

Just as we were not able to save ourselves from sin, we cannot live the Christian life without the power and protection of our gracious God and Savior.  “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.”  And Jesus promised the Father He would lose none of those given to Him, so we are safe in the hands of our loving God.

Scriptures for further study:  John 6:31-65; John:10:1-42; John 14:15-31; Romans 8; Romans 12:1-2; I Corinthians 1:1-9; Philippians 1:3-10; Colossians 2:6-10; I Peter 1 & 2

 

‘E’ is for:  Extending the Kindom!                                    A Calling

As thankful children of God, we are to be those beautiful feet that preach the Gospel of Peace and bring glad tidings to all the nations of the earth, baptizing them in the Name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them all the commands of Jesus!  We evangelize, and our evangelism will be successful in extending the kingdom of Jesus, because our sovereign God does the electing, applying, including, and preserving.

Scriptures for further study:  Genesis 12:2-3; Matthew 28:18-20; Romans 10:6-21; I Corinthians 15:20-28; Colossians 4:2-6; I Timothy 2:1-8

 

What is my only comfort in life and death?

A. That I am not my own,[1] but belong with body and soul, both in life and in death,[2] to my faithful Saviour Jesus Christ.[3] He has fully paid for all my sins with His precious blood, and has set me free from all the power of the devil.[5] He also preserves me in such a way[6] that without the will of my heavenly Father not a hair can fall from my head;[7] indeed, all things must work together for my salvation.[8] Therefore, by His Holy Spirit He also assures me of eternal life[9] and makes me heartily willing and ready from now on to live for Him.[10]

[Heidelberg Catechism question & answer #1]

[1] I Cor. 6:19, 20
[2] Rom. 14:7-9.
[3] I Cor. 3:23; Tit. 2:14.
[4] I Pet. 1:18, 19; I John 1:7; 2:2.
[5] John 8:34-36; Heb. 2:14, 15; I John 3:8.
[6] John 6:39, 40; 10:27-30; II Thess. 3:3; I Pet. 1:5.
[7] Matt. 10:29-31; Luke 21:16-18.
[8] Rom. 8:28.
[9] Rom. 8:15, 16; II Cor. 1:21, 22; 5:5; Eph. 1:13, 14.
[10] Rom. 8:14.

One Response to “God-Centered Salvation & Evangelism”

  1. Steve says:

    Your “E” makes it better than the original acronym since some many accuses us TULIPers of being the frozen chosen.