Biblical preaching declares that men are not born again by the will of the flesh, (deciding) nor by the will of man (praying a prayer), but of God. (John 1:13)
Decisional regeneration does not save men any more than baptismal regeneration does. Now, I will admit that at times some men have been converted through these false and inadequate methods of evangelization. However, these men have been saved in spite of the methodology not because of it. The bible is very clear that only the Holy Spirit of God can work salvation in the souls of the unconverted.
True repentance and faith comes as the result of being regenerated by the Holy Spirit. Repentance and faith are NEVER the cause of salvation or the resulting change in a man. Repentance and saving faith are the acts of a man who has been born again or born from above by the regeneration of the Holy Spirit. Do not confuse the issue, God does not act for us, He does not believe for us, nor does He repent for us – but a man who has been made alive by an act of God will respond in repentance and saving faith. A man must acknowledge his sin against God, must acknowledge the judgment and condemnation he is under and with this understanding turn from that sin and turn to God asking for mercy and redemption.
The bible teaches that God saves His elect through the “foolishness of preaching.” We must preach the gospel, which includes not only the good news of proffered salvation, but the reason for the need of salvation. We must preach that men are condemned sinners who are dammed and doomed to an eternity separated from God in divine punishment.
There is no more damaging and destructive doctrine as what is taught by decisional regeneration than that of the fact that sinners can be saved when they want to be saved by merely deciding to be saved and praying a prayer. This is why local churches are filled with both men who lead as pastors and those who fill the pew who have never been redeemed by the working of God. This is why churches are anemic, lifeless, in-grown, in turmoil-strife, and or dying – they are filled with “dead men.”
Man is spiritually dead in his sin and he cannot please God. (Ephe 2:1) A state of death and helplessness cannot be changed by making a decision for Christ and then praying a prayer. A man cannot make or will himself to be a Christian in this manner. Those who think so or trust in such will be people who do not go to heaven. God must create a new man in an individual in order for that man to enter into heaven. God gives men a new heart by his grace. He makes a man a new person with a new nature. He works a change in a man who know has the capability to live his life as Christ lived his life.
See your sin! See your condemnation! See your need of a savior and savior and turn to Christ, call on His name, begging Him for mercy. Do not confuse these words to mean you must clean yourself up before you come to God. You never will because you can never change on your own. What you must do is come to Him now. Recognize yourself as dead in your sins and apart from the grace of God you will remain there. Throw yourself at the foot of the cross and cry out to the Lord Jesus Christ to save you! Trust in Him alone and surrender to His rule and reign over your life. Give up on yourself, give up your control, give up your own will, cast your sin before Him, and give it all, your very life, to the Lord Jesus Christ. He will accept nothing less than unrivaled allegiance. He demands it.
What will you do now? This could possibly be your last warning. Once your conscience is seared, it will be too late. The longer you run from this message and refuse to heed to God’s mercy, the more difficult it will be for you to respond to His grace. These are the last days, my friend. Stop playing games with your eternity. The world is not worth it, nor is the temporary fulfillment of your sinful lifestyle. Run to Christ and never look back. Surrender to the One who was nailed to the bloody cross and who reigns at the right hand of God today. Is He not worthy? Does He not deserve your unwavering devotion? Does He not deserve your love, which is evidenced by obeying what He teaches?
Run to Him!
The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved.
And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness. – 2 Thessalonians 2:9-12