Friday, August 3, 2007

Eternal Salvation Response

(This response was sent to a young woman on the other day. She had recently left the COGIC church, but still had some old beliefs. Specifically, she held to the notion that one could lose the grace of God (salvation) after one had recieved it. I wanted to encourage her so I wrote this response. Hopefully it will cause you to think as well!)

I used to believe that you could lose your salvation once you had gained it. But as I have studied Scripture more and more, there was an undeniable proof that I was wrong.

1) Matt 10:28-29 And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any [man] pluck them out of my hand. My Father, which gave [them] me, is greater than all; and no [man] is able to pluck [them] out of my Father's hand.

You see, Christ gives HIS sheep eternal life. Then HE makes the statement, no man can pluck them out of my Father's hand. If we belong to Christ, if we belong to the Father, then we can fully believe Rom 8:39 ...Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. You see that, nothing can separate us from Him. Moreover, all of Chapter 8 deals with the election and perseverance of the saints.

2.) 1 John 2:19 "They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would [no doubt] have continued with us: but [they went out], that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us."

Understand, just because someone sincerely claims to be a Christian, just because someone pastored a church, was a missionary in Africa or just showed up to church when the doors were open doesn't mean that they are HIS. It can be best illustrated in the "Parable of the Sower". I won't recite the whole story, but suffice it to point out this portion:

Matt. 4:16-17
And these are they likewise which are sown on stony ground; who, when they have heard the word, immediately receive it with gladness; And have no root in themselves, and so endure but for a time: afterward, when affliction or persecution ariseth for the word's sake, immediately they are offended.

You see there are many individuals who will hear the WORD, will show some joy over it, but after time they will fall away (at some point- could be days, months, or even years). These have not truly believed. That is why John says that, "they went out from us, to show they were not of us." That is not referring to leaving a certain church body or area, but rather the true faith. There is a professing atheist by the name of Dan Barker who is a perfect example. He said he was saved at 15 started ministering after that, got ordained became an Asst. Pastor and worked alongside others who claimed the Gospel. Then he fell away because he wanted to believe the lie of evolution instead of the true gospel. He would tell you he was truly saved, but John clearly says different.

As far as Paul's statement about keeping himself*, if you look in 1 John 2:5 you will see why he (Paul) can make that statement. "But whoso keepeth his word (God's), in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him." What "word" would Paul be keeping? The "Words" of God of course. He would keep the commandments not out of necessity of fulfilling Moses' Law, but in honor to Christ. He would keep his body in subjection as a matter of God's glory, to not do so would mean he had known the grace of God but rejected it. It also points to the fact that we must be Holy as God is Holy. We are to be separated from the sins of this world. No true Christian will take the grace of God and abuse it for the sake of sinning. Those who do were never God's to begin with. Also, Paul said "follow me as I follow Christ.." For Paul to follow Christ he would have to "lay aside every sin and weight that would take him off course! We have liberty in Christ, but we are behooved to never try to take advantage of it.

*(1 Cr 9:27 But I keep under my body, and bring [it] into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.)

No comments:

Christians Around the World!