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Dr. Lance T. Ketchum

Learning to Lead, Converting the Heart:The Five Verbs of Saving Faith


     “The pursuit of relevancy by New Evangelicals has caused their continuing and gradual compromise of truth. Because of this dialog, most of the participants began to try to find the most reducible form of the Gospel to which they could agree to have a degree of unity. This Soteriological Reductionism came forth in three main streams within Evangelicalism and Fundamentalism by the 1950's:

1. Easy Believism (New Evangelicalism)

2. Only Believism (Evangelicalism)

3. Easy Prayerism (much of Fundamentalism; One, Two, Three, say it after me!)

     Paul's message in Galatians 1:6-9 is clear: If the Gospel can be perverted in any way, evangelism is perverted as well as the necessary faith that brings genuine salvation and conversion. These three forms of Soteriological Reductionism have filled evangelical local churches with people masquerading as "born again" Christians when in reality, most of them are nothing more than "whited sepulchers." This reality exists because all three forms of Reductionism are perversions in varying degrees of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Easy Believism (New Evangelicalism)

     Easy Believism was the most extreme form of Reductionism within Evangelicalism emerging out this era. The common denominator within Easy Believism was that Jesus was the Son of God incarnate and that He died for the sins of mankind. If a person believed these basic truths about Jesus, regardless of any false beliefs to which he might hold, he could still claim to be "born again." It most cases, few, if any, of the objective and definitive facts of the Gospel were required to be taught or understood before a salvation decision could be made.

     Iain Murray, in Revivals and Revivalism[1], says that the Presbyterian Evangelist Charles Finney (1792-1875) "believed that all that was needed for conversion was a resolution signified by standing, kneeling, or coming forward, and because the Holy Spirit always acts when a sinner acts, the public resolution could be treated as 'identical with the miraculous inward change of sudden conversion'."

     Easy Believism has four basic tenets:

1. A conversion experience is the only thing necessary for genuine salvation (whatever defines that experience). If a person can testify to a time he accepted/received Christ into his heart, that person has eternal security and should be given assurance of salvation. Therefore, a testimony of such an experience was sought to give assurance that salvation had taken place. Many types of experiences are accepted for this assurance.

2. There are no rules or standards expected within the Christian life after one was saved. Anyone saying that such things existed under grace was a legalist.

3. Once saved and having received the Holy Spirit, the Christian is at liberty to make decisions according to the Holy Spirit's leading of his conscience. The Word of God is not the only way God directs believers to His will. Dogmatic applications of doctrine should be avoided and personal liberty should be allowed free expression.

4. Not every Christian will live a godly life, therefore the genuineness of his conversion should not be judged by outward circumstances or by external evidences of habitual carnality.

     Only Believism (Evangelicalism)

      Although Only Believism is less Reductionism than Easy Believism, it is equally perverting. Only Believism reduces the the believer's response to Gospel to only believing. In other words, all responses to obey the Gospel (Romans 10:16) such as repentance, receiving, confessing, and calling upon the name of Jesus are all the same as, and are encapsulated in only believing. These various responses are not individual acts and are all merely aspects of believing that need not be expressed individually.

     All the other verbs describe aspects of a salvation decision, but these aspects cannot be reduced to only believing. In other words, repenting of sin (Luke 24:7) and "dead works" (Hebrews 6:1), understanding (Matthew 13:23), believing the objective facts of the Gospel of Jesus Christ (Acts 8:37; 16:31-32), publicly confessing one's belief that Jesus is Jehovah (Romans 10:9; "LORD," see Joel 2:32), calling on the name of Jesus to save (Romans 10:13), and receiving the indwelling of the Holy Spirit (John 1:12) are all aspects of a proper response to the Gospel in a genuine salvation decision and should be explained in the presentation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. True Evangelism involves both the explanation of the objective facts of the Gospel and the objective required responses to the Gospel in order for true, supernatural "conversion" to be created.”

Table of Contents & Sample Pages
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Learning to Lead, Converting the Heart:
The Five Verbs of Saving Faith

Jesus is Lord

     The intent of the Epistle to the Colossians is to teach believers about the corrupting influence of three false practices – Legalism, Asceticism, and Mysticism. The epistle warns against all forms of process salvation, which contradict the “born again” believer’s completeness in Christ. Every Christian must be warned – “Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ” (Colossians 2:8).” The Epistle to the Colossians is one of the most important books in the Bible for dealing with the ever growing corruptions infiltrating the churches of the Lord Jesus Christ. Understanding this epistle is essential to the doctrinal and practical purity of all local churches. This book will prove useful for Adult and Teen Sunday school classes, Small Group studies, men’s or women’s Bible studies, Bible Colleges, and Bible institutes.


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Jesus is Lord



Are Your Baptismal Waters Doctrinally Shallow?

"Are Your Baptismal Waters Doctrinally Shallow?" is intended to challenge pastors, Christians, and local churches with God's intended purposes within the ordinance of water baptism. The content of the book is intended to help pastors teach new believers the areas of personal commitment to Christ, the local church, and preparation for the "work of the ministry" to which all believers are commanded. The book will make an excellent study for new converts, new church members, adult or teen Sunday School classes, Small Group ministries, home Bible studies, or a preaching series.

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Are Your Baptismal Waters Doctrinally Shallow?


Hardcover Also Available


The Baptism and Filling of the Holy Spirit

This book is the culmination of three years of intensive work on the doctrine of Pneumatology. This is an extensive doctrinal work of over 250,000 words. It is a book every pastor should have for his study. It is recommended by many for Bible Institutes and Bible Colleges and can be used as a syllabus to teach Pneumatology.



Table of Contents & Sample Pages
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The Baptism and Filling of the Holy Spirit



Handfuls on Purpose

     Great things sometimes come in small packages. Such is the case with the little book of Ruth. The time you spend in the book of Ruth may prove to be one of the greatest investments of your life. It is God’s love story to humanity. The setting for the book of Ruth is “in the days when the judges ruled.”

    “Now it came to pass in the days when the judges ruled, that there was a famine in the land. And a certain man of Bethlehemjudah went to sojourn in the country of Moab, he, and his wife, and his two sons” (Ruth 1:1).

   During this period, God intended the nation of Israel to function as a Theocracy. God was to be their King and was to govern them through His Law and through various “Judges” who He raised up to deliver Israel from the consequences of her rebellion against God’s Law. It is apparent that these people did not want a heavenly King, but a king “like other nations.” It the midst of all this historic drama, we find God’s portrayal of His love and redemption in the types found in Boaz, Naomi, and Ruth. It is a love story of hope in that what God promises He fulfills.

Table of Contents & Sample Pages
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Handfuls on Purpose


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"He keepeth the paths of judgment, and preserveth the way of his saints."

Proverbs 2:8