“I Have Decided” is a Pentecostal mishmash!

November 9, 2008 by: KJVOnly

This song is from Amy Grant’s Age to Age album. Growing up around the time it came out, it was very influential on me, especially when I was extremely down. Now I wish I had never heard of it. Oh well.

Let’s start with the lyrics. (Song written by Michael Card, © 1982 Mole End Music and Singspiration Music. Lyrics used solely for commentary.)

I have decided
I’m gonna live like a believer.
Turn my back on the deceiver.
I’m gonna live what I believe.
I have decided
Being good is just a fable.
I just can’t, cause I’m not able.
I’m gonna leave it to the Lord.

There’s a wealth of things that I profess
I said that I believed.
But deep inside, I never changed.
I guess I’d been deceived.
Cause a voice inside kept telling me
That I’d change by and by.
But the Spirit made it clear to me
That kind of life’s a lie.

I have decided
I’m gonna live like a believer.
Turn my back on the deceiver.
I’m gonna live what I believe.
I have decided
Being good is just a fable.
I just can’t, cause I’m not able.
I’m gonna leave it to the Lord.

So forget the game of being good
And your self-righteous pain.
Cause the only good inside your heart
Is the good that Jesus brings.
When the world begins to see you change,
Don’t expect them to applaud.
Just keep your eyes on Him and tell yourself
I’ve become the work of God!

I have decided
I’m gonna live like a believer.
Turn my back on the deceiver.
I’m gonna live what I believe.
I have decided
Being good is just a fable.
I just can’t, cause I’m not able.
I’m gonna leave it to the Lord.



First let’s focus on the chorus.

I have decided
I’m gonna live like a believer.
Turn my back on the deceiver.
I’m gonna live what I believe.
I have decided
Being good is just a fable.
I just can’t, cause I’m not able.
I’m gonna leave it to the Lord.

The second line says “live like a believer”. Shouldn’t that be “live AS a believer”? Even better, our belief has nothing to do with it once we first believed and trusted!

  1. But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach;
  2. That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
  3. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
  4. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.
  5. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him.
  6. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.
  7. How then shall they call upon him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?
  8. And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!
  9. But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Esaias saith, Lord, who hath believed our report?
  10. So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
  11. Romans 10:8-17 KJV

  1. In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise.
  2. Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.
  3. Ephesians 1:13-14 KJV

These passages talk about belief then trust, and THEN faith. You can’t have faith unless you first believed AND trusted, and you can’t believe in what you haven’t heard. The ONLY way you are going to hear is by the word of God, which is the King James Bible. You are not going to hear through Contemporary Christian Music (or any other kind of music, for that matter).

Also notice that verse 17 says faith “cometh by hearing”. It’s not our faith, it’s His faith we have once we’re saved. We don’t have to keep building our faith and fretting we may lose it.



So, what happens if we stop believing?

  1. If we believe not, yet he abideth faithful: he cannot deny himself.
  2. 2 Timothy 2:13 KJV

Ephesians 1:13 quoted above says “ye were sealed“. That means it’s done. If we are not faithful, we’re not lost, because we are sealed and because Christ lives in us. He cannot deny himself.

So, the lyrics about “living like a believer” are just nonsense. If you are a “believer” that really means you’re unsaved. Once you believe and trust, you become a Christian, whether you later believe it or not!

The fourth line of the chorus, “I’m gonna live what I believe”, strengthens this point. We don’t get to choose what’s true and what’s not true. I may believe the sky is plaid with polka-dots, but that doesn’t make it true. (It does make it likely I’ll wind up in a mental hospital.)

Look at 1 Corinthians 13.

  1. Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.
  2. For we know in part, and we prophesy in part.
  3. But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away.
  4. When I was a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.
  5. For now we see through a glass darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.
  6. 1 Corinthians 13:8-12 KJV

The good news is “that which is perfect” HAS come and it’s the King James Bible! We no longer have to rely on our childish thinking (choosing what we believe), and we can know what is true!



Continuing on, look at the lines:

I have decided
Being good is just a fable.
I just can’t ‘cause I’m not able.
I’m gonna leave it to the Lord.

Where would the writer get such a statement? From Matthew 19, that’s where.

  1. And, behold, one came and said unto him, Good Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life?
  2. And he said unto him, Why callest thou me good? There is none good but one, that is, God: but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.
  3. Matthew 19:16-17 KJV

People who, today, think these verses are in effect figure that God is working in them to burn off the bad parts and slowly revealing more and more of Christ’s character in them, in effect eventually making them good. However, people today who think this are totally missing the point.

Look at Galatians 2.

  1. But when I saw that they walked not uprightly according to the truth of the gospel, I said unto Peter before them all, If thou, being a Jew, livest after the manner of Gentiles, and not as do the Jews, why compellest thou the Gentiles to live as do the Jews?
  2. We who are Jews by nature, and not sinners of the Gentiles,
  3. Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.
  4. Galatians 2:14-16 KJV

So, people who are trying to “follow the commandments” and be justified by the works of the law, are going down a self-destructive road! The only way to be saved is to be justified by the faith OF Christ (not faith IN Christ), and that comes by hearing the word of God, not a Contemporary Christian Music song.

  1. For I through the law am dead to the law, that I might live unto God.
  2. I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.
  3. I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain.
  4. Galatians 2:19-21 KJV

These verses make it clear that any outward change is simply a change of the flesh. The songwriter looking for changes deep inside, based on outward actions, is looking in the wrong place. When a person is saved, they are dead to this world (and to the law of sin and death) and their life is hid with Christ above. We still live in the flesh, but our salvation does not depend on whether the flesh changes or not.

Look at the sections above, talking about how we are sealed with the holy Spirit of promise, and how Christ cannot deny himself. How could it possibly be that each day we become a little more like Christ? When would the “finish line” be where we would be Christ for him to not deny himself? It makes no sense unless he is living in us here and now!



This whole song is a Pentecostal mishmash, focused on the songwriter or singer. What they are missing is that we have “that which is perfect”, so knowledge and prophesy are done away with.

There is no “word from the Lord”, so the Spirit will only lead people to the Book. There is no more knowledge. God’s not going to tell you something that’s not found in the Book for everyone to find.

There is no more private interpretation. By Amy singing “The Spirit made it clear to me”, it’s clear to me she is not relying on the Book as her final authority.



Let’s finish up with the last verse.

So forget the game of being good
And your self-righteous pain.
Cause the only good inside your heart
Is the good that Jesus brings.
When the world begins to see you change,
Don’t expect them to applaud.
Just keep your eyes on Him and tell yourself
I’ve become the work of God!

The 3rd and 4th lines confirm 2 Corinthians 1:22

  1. Who hath also sealed us, and given the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts.
  2. 2 Corinthians 1:22 KJV

The ONLY good in our hearts is the Holy Spirit. The hearts themselves are not good and cannot be good. That’s why Christ has to cut away the flesh in our spiritual circumcision.

  1. For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh:
  2. But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God.
  3. Romans 2:28-29 KJV

The last two lines of the song directly contradict Galatians 2:20, which we read before. When we are saved, we are dead. We are not the work of God, because Christ finished the work on the cross! To think that God is working on us today to make us worthy of heaven is to deny Christ and what He did and continues to do!

You are condemned by Galatians 2:21 if you think righteousness comes about by works.



In conclusion, this whole song is not only self-gratifying but it is completely misguided, attempting to deceive every listener. It’s ironic that the song contains the line “I guess I’d been deceived” because the whole intent of the song is to deceive the listeners and keep them from believing in Christ.

Don’t let yourself, dear reader, be similarly deceived.