1689 Baptist Confession: Saving Faith

"You need to be saved! Brother." If you are a Baptist, you have most likely heard that before. What is saving faith? How is it given? After looking into the glorious Word of God, you will find it is similar in how God gave you the ability to live and breathe. The 1689 Baptist Confession summarizes this doctrine well.

Chapter 14 - SAVING FAITH

14.1 The grace of faith (by which the elect are enabled to believe to the saving of their souls) is the work of the Spirit of Christ in their hearts. It is normally brought into being by the ministry of the Word.1 It is increased and strengthened by the ministry of the Word, and by the administration of baptism and the Lord's supper, prayer, and other means appointed by God.2
(1) Joh 6:37,44; Act 11:21,24; 13:48; 14:27; 15:9; 2Co 4:13; Eph 2:8; Phi 1:29; 2Th 2:13; 1Pe 1:2
(2) Rom 10:14,17; Luk 17:5; Act 20:32; Rom 4:11; 1Pe 2:2
14.2 By this faith, a Christian believes to be true whatever is revealed in the Word for it is the authority of God himself. We also perceive an excellency in the Word above all other writings and everything else in the world, because it shows forth the glory of God and his attributes, the excellency of Christ and his nature and offices, and the power and fullness of the Holy Spirit in his works and operations.
So believers are enabled to trust implicitly the truth they have believed,1 and to respond appropriately to each particular passage in Scripture, yielding obedience to the commands,2 trembling at the threatenings,3 and embracing the promises of God for this life and that which is to come.4
But the principal acts of saving faith are those directly to do with Christ—accepting, receiving, and resting on him alone for justification, sanctification, and eternal life, by virtue of the covenant of grace.5
(1) Act 24:14; 1Th 2:13; Psa 19:7-10; 119:72
(2) Joh 15:14; Rom 16:26
(3) Isa 66:2
(4) 1Ti 4:8; Heb 11:13
(5) Joh 1:12; Act 15:11; 16:31; Gal 2:20
14.3 This faith may differ in degree, and may be weak or strong,1 yet even at its weakest it is different in kind and nature (as is all saving grace) from the faith and common grace of temporary believers.2 Therefore, though it may be frequently attacked and weakened, it gains the victory,3 and develops in many until they attain full assurance4 through Christ, who is both the author and finisher of our faith.5
(1) Mat 6:30; 8:10,26; 14:31; 16:8; 17:20; Heb 5:13-14; Rom 4:19-20
(2) Jas 2:14; 2Pe 1:1; 1Jo 5:4
(3) Luk 22:31-32; Eph 6:16; 1Jo 5:4-5
(4) Psa 119:114; Heb 6:11-12; 10:22-23
(5) Heb 12:2


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