Many people will argue that God gave man the gift of free will in the Garden of Eden. A close study of the story of the temptation of Adam and Eve may indicate a more sinister source.
Just in case you are in one of those stagnant or declining churches or one of those areas of the world where the health of the local church is suffering, it might help to lift your eyes and look beyond your own horizon. In fact, it might help you to get on a plane and go see what is happening in other places around the world. If that is not possible, then the next best thing might be to read about what is happening with the church in the rest of the world.
A correct doctrine of God can lead to the correct application of Scripture, a clearer understanding of redemption, and a clarion call to missions.
In the discussion of repentance, there is an undue emphasis on sin as its focus, and little or no emphasis on the true focus of repentance, namely, Jesus Christ.
Salvation is the means by which fallen humanity, separated from God by their sinful nature, are set free from the bondage of sin, reconciled to God the Father, and made qualified to serve in the ministry of the kingdom of God.
A Christian is a person who confesses Christ as Lord and believes in the bodily resurrection of Jesus.
To simply believe that Jesus is Lord or is the Son of God is not sufficient to gain salvation. There are thousands or maybe millions of people in church (and not in church) who profess to be Christians bound for heaven simply on the basis that they believe.
Part 2: The first step in repentance is not admitting one is a sinner, but having a personal encounter with the living Christ.