March 13, 2005 Q & A

Evangelism without Decisional Regeneration


Can you give me some references of Reformed authors who are experts in evangelism who avoid the trap of "decisional regeneration" so rampant here in North America for the past century or two?


[Editor's note: Those unfamiliar with the term "decisional regeneration" may find these comments helpful:

There is a popular misconception that being born again results from a person's decision to invite Christ into his life. This view is widely held in Baptist, Nazarene, Wesleyan, Pentecostal and independent churches. It is the view of most evangelists doing area-wide crusades. One such evangelist actually wrote a book entitled How to Be Born Again (as if the Holy Spirit needed instruction!). This view may be designated decisional regeneration. It is demonstrably faulty, for it contradicts the express teaching that being born again is not "of the will of the flesh" (See John 1:12-13.) What does this mean? The New International Version renders this: "not of human decision." John's point is that an individual by making a decision does not cause his own new birth.

    --Stephen Pribble, "Do You Know the Truth About Being Born Again?"

You may like to read this helpful study of regeneration in its entirety. To do so, just click on the preceding link.]

There are many authors who meet your criteria. Let me suggest three: John Benton, John Blanchard, and Peter Jeffrey. Each has written several books and pamphlets.

Three booklets I have used in my evangelistic work are:

Which Way to God?, Peter Jeffrey (Evangelical Press)

Ultimate Questions, John Blanchard (Evangelical Press)

Coming to Faith in Christ, John Benton (Banner of Truth)



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