I recently had a dear friend ask me to clarify my position on Lordship and salvation. I know in previous posts I have said that if you don’t make Christ Lord of your life, then you probably aren’t saved. I didn’t know there was such a huge debate and controversy over this. The debate is over lordship salvation. I have enjoyed diving into this pool and taking it up in prayer and reading. I’ve become richer in the process. I thank this friend for bringing this up; it was an amazing exercise in questioning and defending what I personally believe. I think it is always a good thing to reflect on our beliefs, as it cleans away any cobwebs or dust bunnies.
What I Believe: Lordship Salvation
I believe that the fruit of our salvation is making Jesus Lord. If we are truly saved, we will make Him Lord over our lives. In what I have read, this whole controversy over “lordship salvation” is about the order of salvation. Surely salvation is by grace alone, faith alone, and Christ alone – not works. But after we’re saved, if we don’t begin to make Jesus Lord of our lives, I would question the salvation. Discipleship is a process of growth, so no I am not saying zero to 60 in one clean step. But Lordship proves my salvation and strengthens my walk as a disciple.
Yes, Lordship and discipleship ARE synonymous. I cannot be a disciple of Christ without submitting to His Lordship. Scripture proves this clearly. In Luke 14, Jesus gives the following conditions of discipleship:
- ‘If anyone comes to Me, and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be My disciple’ (Lk. 14:26).
- ‘Whoever does not carry his own cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple’ (Lk. 14:27).
- So therefore, no one of you can be My disciple who does not give up all his own possessions’ (Lk. 14:33).
William Hendriksen explains the meaning of these verses in this way: ‘Wholehearted devotion, all-out loyalty, complete self-denial, so that one places himself, his time, his earthly possessions, his talents etc., at the disposal of Christ, is what Jesus asks.’
These scriptures show the commitment of the disciple. But do I have to make Jesus my Lord in order to be saved? Certainly not. That order is backwards. I can’t make Him Lord unless I am saved. But once I am truly saved, the spiritual progression is to make Him Lord. This whole debate is a little, “Which came first: the chicken or the egg?” But now you know my personal beliefs. Lordship and discipleship ARE synonymous; you can’t have one without the other.
Lordship and Sovereignty
I am currently working on and preparing my book, The Sovereign Touch, for submission to a major publisher. I am ready to get this book printed, and whether it is taken up by a big publisher or we self-publish it, it will be in print very soon (well, ASAP). Having to go through it again with a fine-toothed comb has been so fun. I am super passionate about this subject and have great zeal to see it in the hands of others.
When I had to define the book’s intended audience, the Lord revealed that it was written for people like YOU, other disciples on the journey of discipleship. If you didn’t know, this blog is a discipleship blog. It is directed and ordered for the disciple, by disciples—not the unsaved. We address “rubber meets the road” topics as the Spirit leads us through our own living process. This blog is as alive as I am, because it moves through our lives like a meandering river. We are enriched and challenged prior to anything being posted on Get Along With God.
I want to thank you for taking this journey with us, and letting Christ’s reflected light shine through us to illuminate you. This process is one of the most exciting journeys of my life. I love having it written in black and white to reflect and return to, over and over.