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9 that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.

 

Beginning with verse nine, Paul developed the content of what we believe. The issue is genuine faith.

9 that

The word “that” indicates the content of Christ’s saving message. It matters not only who we believe but what we believe. The emphasis is on content here.

if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus

The idea of “confess” alludes in this context to Deuteronomy 30:14 (cf. v. 8). Confession is public identification with Christ as the Messiah. The Greek word means to say the same thing. We agree that Jesus is God Almighty.

“Lord” indicates Jesus as sovereign God. The Greek translation of the Old Testament (Septuagint) uses the word “LORD” over 6,000 times for the name of God.

Confession with the “mouth” indicates that the confession must be made audibly and openly. This is a confession that, as Lord, Christ as God is sovereign over all things, especially sovereign over our salvation.

and believe [point action—Greek] in your heart

Believing in one’s heart is to believe with one’s entire being. This is a belief that grabs the person; it is not superficial belief or fideism. What the heart believes the mouth confesses. Belief is primarily a mode of thinking, not emoting.

The “heart” in the New Testament is not emotions but the entire being—mind, emotion, and will. This means that belief is more than a function of the mind; it is a function of the mind, but it is more. Believing with the “heart” is no token assent that Jesus rose from the dead.

Note that in 10:9 confession precedes belief, and in 10:10 belief precedes confession. The reason for this is twofold:

“Mouth” precedes “heart” in Deuteronomy 30:14 (v. 8)

Verse nine emphasizes the incarnation first and the resurrection second in chronology. Verse 10, however, stresses the order of the believer’s personal experience as: (1) salvation and (2) confession. First one believes and then confesses that belief.

The first half of verse nine gives the result (confess) and the last half gives the means of salvation (believe). This verse gives the result first and the cause later, but the next verse gives the cause first and the result later.

that God has raised Him from the dead,

The resurrection is completely unique; it is a distinctive of Christianity. Belief in the resurrection is a corollary of confession that Jesus is Lord.

1 Co 15: 17 And if Christ is not risen, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins!

you will be saved.

God will save the soul that believes that Jesus is God and that He raised the humanity of Christ from the grave.

PRINCIPLE:

What the heart believes the mouth will confess.

APPLICATION:

Confession is the inevitable result of believing. The Bible never affirms faith without content. Faith in faith (fideism) is never presented in Scripture. There are two items we are to believe in our verse: (1) Jesus is Lord and (2) the Father raised Him bodily from the dead.

The resurrection of Christ validates the Christian faith. His resurrection proves that salvation from Him is true. The Father put a stamp of approval on the person and work of Christ at the resurrection.

Ro 1: 4 and declared to be the Son of God with power according to the Spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead.

True faith will manifest public confession of that faith.

1 Ti 6: 12 Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, to which you were also called and have confessed the good confession in the presence of many witnesses. 13 I urge you in the sight of God who gives life to all things, and before Christ Jesus who witnessed the good confession before Pontius Pilate,

There are those who claim that we must make Jesus Lord of our lives to be saved. Subjective lordship for salvation is not found in the Bible, but only objective Lordship; that is, Christ as Lord is God Almighty. If to be saved we “make” Jesus Lord, to what degree are we to make Him Lord before we are considered saved? It is clear that we accept Him as Lord God; that is, we believe in His deity.

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