(Luther’s Catechism, Anniversary Edition pg.186)
Can people decide, by the power of their own wills, to accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior?
Unfortunately, many today speak about faith in Christ as a personal decision. They believe that people must ultimately decide whether or not to accept what God has to say and whether or not to invite Jesus into their hearts.
The Bible doesn’t teach this. Rather, it teaches that we are all by nature spiritually dead. Our human wills, in any spiritual sense, are also dead. What is dead cannot contribute toward becoming spiritually alive. Those who view faith as something brought about by a human decision are placing confidence for salvation in something other than God. Such misplaced confidence opens the door to uncertainty and doubt, leaving them to wonder if they truly believe or if they are sincere. We place our trust in God, who alone has the power to work the miracle of faith through the gospel.