My Testimony and a "Frame Response"
My Testimony and a "Frame Response"
My Open Testimony
I post my testimony here in the open in order for people to see the validity of my salvation or “to criticize" my salvation since some seems to think something was just not correct in God’s saving me in this manner. I do not seek to explain what God did on the day in 1977 that I was regenerated. The message I heard was that Jesus was light and I could be brought out of darkness. That night I repented of sin, and believed. I asked for forgiveness. I also in my prayer (no one helping me pray) said, "God whomever you are I believe you. Whatever you have done I believe it. Change my life or else I die".
The next day I went looking for someone to teach me - which I now know is called being discipled. I never denied the resurrection, or the Bible to be the word of God nor anything else. I was quite ignorant about Christianity. I did not know anything at that time so I had to learn.
That night I believed that God is and that he would help (reward me) and that is what He has done. I was blind but then I saw. Amazing Grace was granted to me that evening. As a child of God the Father I began to be taught as His son. Praise His Holy name. Now again that is all I know.
A Person, the Holy Spirit, worked with me as a person in my circumstance where I was at that time. I never did nor do I now deny the centrality of the resurrection nor the cross nor the precious bloods redeeming power. I had to learn about it. It took months of physical and spiritual training to remove the drug abuse issues and the false teaching I had received and believed in public education. Deprogramming me was not easy. I did not take things, nor do I usually take what someone says at face value. I read and look at things from all angles. As my wife says, "Steve you move slow and with focus reading way too much". In all of this God was with me and teaching me even through my being ignorant and steeped in false evolutionistic teaching.
I did not disagree with God nor what people said about what the Bible was teaching. I just did not know where total truth was so I had to look at all sides. My Father was kind and gentle and eventually I learned that all the Bible says is true spiritually and historically for it is written by God Himself, being God breathed.
This is my testimony and I am thankful for the salvation given me.For those that want to tell me God could not work in me this way I say, “Respectively, if you were not there you simply just do not know what God did in this situation.”
Respectfully, Your brother in Christ
Now some have questioned whether I was saved during this time. I say, hold and proclaim that I was. Some have said I was probably regenerated but salvation probably did not come to me until I understood the resurrection. Perhaps, I certainly do not think so since massive progressive sanctification was taking place and massive massacring sin was about to kill me. I was even persecuted during this time since I wanted to tell everyone that God had so changed my life. But, perhaps some may be closer to how God worked with me that I am. If so, so be it and God bless them!
I however do believe Dr. Frame has explained this possibility of my salvation better than I could have ever put it together myself. I am just to close to all that happened! Here is some of Dr. Frames comments regarding salvation without fully understanding the resurrection.
From Dr. Frame,
Q. Is it possible to be saved without knowing about the Resurrection of Christ?
A. “Sure. There were lots of Jewish believers in the first century who needed to be informed of the Resurrection by the apostolic proclamation. (Think of the people who "knew only the baptism of John.") I've no reason to believe that they were all unregenerate before they knew that Jesus was risen. So today, there may be people in whose hearts God is working, who haven't been taught the full truth about Christ. They may even profess that Christ is Lord, without knowing that the Resurrection is specifically physical. But when told in a godly way, they will eventually accept the truth."
A fuller comment on this subject by Dr. Frame:
“……..if I were publishing a comment on this issue, I would want to make more qualifications.
The point is that regeneration and salvation did not begin with the coming of Jesus. There were regenerate believers before the incarnation—Abraham, David, Simeon, Elizabeth, Anna, et al. Now although the Resurrection of Jesus is implicit in OT prophecy, it is not explicit. Did Abraham know in advance that Jesus of Nazareth would be killed and raised again? Certainly he believed in a God who was able to raise the dead, and his experience in Gen. 22 certainly confirmed that. But I don’t think Abraham had explicit faith that Jesus would be raised from the dead.
Now after the Resurrection, it was not the case that all old covenant believers suddenly became fully self-conscious new covenant believers. It took some time for the message of the Resurrection to get around. If an old covenant believer (say, in India) died before he heard of Jesus’ resurrection, was he thereby condemned to Hell? I doubt it.
How do I reconcile this with Rom. 10:9? Paul is writing to believers, assuring them that they are saved because they have confessed that Jesus is Lord and believed that God has raised him from the dead. He is not commenting on the kinds of people I mentioned above. Certainly you cannot derive from this statement that, say, Abraham, is not saved because he did not confess Jesus as Lord and believe that God had (would) raise him from the dead.
I also believe (with the Westminster Confession 10.3) that infant children can be regenerated and saved apart from any explicit confession. Rom. 10:9 is not talking about them. Nor is it talking about those the Confession calls “other elect persons who are incapable of being outwardly called by the ministry of the Word.”
So explicit confession is not a general rule for everyone. But Paul certainly is saying that if you do make an explicit confession of Christ and the Resurrection you will be saved.