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How Secure is Eternal Security?


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#1 Thinker

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Posted 18 June 2012 - 09:58 AM

There is a question on many Christians (and sometimes on unsaved people's) minds. It goes like this: can we walk away from being saved? Usually, the question is prompted by someone who appears to have been saved and yet turns completely away. However, we must go by Scripture, not experience. For example: one person turns away and goes into deep sin and later repents and returns to our Lord; another goes into sin, is never bothered (at least it appears that way) and never returns. Only God knows their hearts. We can only guess what is going on in these people's hearts. Jesus, on the other hand, tells us in John 10:27-29, "My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me: 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."

Notice, He doesn't say "if." He says that His sheep do follow and shall never perish. If I could truly turn away undisturbed for the rest of my life, it would only show that I was not a sheep. Once we become one of the sheep, we cannot reverse becoming one of the sheep. Note that the text also says that His sheep "follow." The tense seems to indicate that the "following" keeps right on being done. Jesus keeps on giving them eternal life. If we receive eternal life and could somehow lose it, it would not be eternal. This in no way gives us a license to sin (a truly saved person wouldn't want that kind of license). No child of God can get away with sin. God knows how to and will deal with disobedience in His Children's lives. He corrects and chastises them but doesn't disown them.

"Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ" (Philippians 1:6).

Ron Pinkham

#2 Charles Miles

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Posted 19 June 2012 - 06:53 AM

Once you know that you know you are in the Father`s hand, you are one of His sheep. Yes, we still sin even though we do our best not to do so but in no way does that remove our salvation and sonship. The prodical son left the home, went to a far away land, and sinned over and over, but he remained a son. Upon his return there was joyful celebration. He was never NOT a son. He was still a son even though the Father didn`t approve of what he did while away. Possibly one of the keys here is to repent and work daily to become what God expects of us. This in no way is to suggest that works do anything toward salvation, but good works simply are a byproduct of loving God and trying every day to do what pleases Him. Love is the key here and all things done without the love of God as the motivator just don`t get much done.

#3 StevePage

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Posted 20 June 2012 - 05:02 AM

When we are first saved we enter into a covenant with God, and we must stay in the covenant in order to remain saved. We choose to be in covenant and yet some choose to not remain in covenant.

The scripture says "no one will snatch them out of My hand", it does not say man is unable to break the covenant and leave His hand.

The New Covenant must be viewed through the principles established since the creation (it's defined by the Old Testament, not by the reformers). In all of scripture one principle is the same throughout, those who broke covenant with God did not receive what was promised in the covenant.

Our relationship with God and our salvation is not dependent upon one prayer for salvation and repenting one time, It is a covenant based on His everlasting grace and faithfulness and our faith and faithfulness. We must be faithful to our Lord. Faithfulness is not about earning anything, faithfulness is about love and recognition of His Lordship.

Another principle we see throughout scripture is that God has always had grace toward those who falter while in the covenant. We see that grace in the story of the prodigal son. So we can have peace knowing we are forgiven when we fall, but we also must know that we must always choose to go back to the Father just as the wayward son did.

The wayward son was always a son yet we cannot miss that he repented, returned, and confessed his sin. Even if the son had not come back he would have still been a son,that's true. His choices did not mean he was never a son, but being son did not guarantee . Israel turned from God many times and was only forgiven when they repented and turned back to God. They were God's chosen nation, and they were still the nation that God chose even when they broke covenant. They were chosen for the covenant, and they had to return to the covenant when they broke it in order to receive the promise of the covenant.

So the story of the prodigal son is a picture of God's faithfulness, grace and forgiveness however it is also a story of a son realizing his wrong, repenting, confessing sin and turning back to the Father.

Tozer wrote "When Jesus was here upon the earth and walked among us, He used no fancy evangelistic maneuvers. He never said, 'Now raise your hand; now put it down!'" Tozer was right Jesus said, " “ No one, after putting his hand to the plow and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.” He also said, " If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love; just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love."

God bless, I hope this is helpful.
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#4 Charles Miles

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Posted 21 June 2012 - 10:41 AM

As I have said before, I am certainly no scholar of all the Bible, but there are several instances where the covenant was not completely kept by man and yet the promises were kept. As I recall, God`s covenant with Abraham was done while Abraham(Abram) was in a deep sleep, so God swore the covenant by Himself. Granted, the chosen people were not always prosperous when they forsook God`s law, but the Abrahamic covenant was always, asn is still, in force. We should always do our best to follow God`s will for our lives, repent of our sin, and strive to better ourselves.....but an oath sworn by Almightly God to Himself is irrivocable and always in effect, no matter what. I understand that we are staining at a gnat here and covenants should be kept, but man has never kept one yet. I try and try, but then fail and repent of my failure and attempt to do a better job next time.
How does this sound? Man can be saved, a child of the living God, but be out of His favor because of unrepented sin. I think once a man is saved, he should act like it and continually live a life that uses love as a foundation and repentance as a daily recovery from deeds unacceptable to the Father.

#5 Dick Lawson

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Posted 21 June 2012 - 01:58 PM

This topic, Eternal Security, has been discussed to much detail on this site in: Can somebody lose his or her salvation? Started by Duvard Francois, Jan 26 2011

It would be good to refer to this discussion in relationship to the current one. Click on Duvard Francois and then in the right upper part of the screen open 'Find Content' and you'll find Can...salvation?

#6 Marvin Harrell

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Posted 25 June 2012 - 02:12 PM

Follow this link to the already existing topic. Locking this thread.
Marvin Harrell
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Email me

#7 StevePage

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Posted 11 July 2012 - 06:02 AM

As I have said before, I am certainly no scholar of all the Bible, but there are several instances where the covenant was not completely kept by man and yet the promises were kept. As I recall, God`s covenant with Abraham was done while Abraham(Abram) was in a deep sleep, so God swore the covenant by Himself. Granted, the chosen people were not always prosperous when they forsook God`s law, but the Abrahamic covenant was always, asn is still, in force. We should always do our best to follow God`s will for our lives, repent of our sin, and strive to better ourselves.....but an oath sworn by Almightly God to Himself is irrivocable and always in effect, no matter what. I understand that we are staining at a gnat here and covenants should be kept, but man has never kept one yet. I try and try, but then fail and repent of my failure and attempt to do a better job next time.
How does this sound? Man can be saved, a child of the living God, but be out of His favor because of unrepented sin. I think once a man is saved, he should act like it and continually live a life that uses love as a foundation and repentance as a daily recovery from deeds unacceptable to the Father.

Marvin, thank you for opening this back up. I don't think that the avenues being explored here were (or ever would be) explored in the other thread.

Charles, 

I agree that no person ever completely kept a covenant. It was in those times of failure that we saw God's grace extended and forgiveness given. However, it was only those who faltered in keeping the covenant and then pressed on that received the promises. Let's keep in mind here has been grace since Adam, God has always shown grace. So it's not only grace the defines our new covenant, though we must bear in mind without grace there would be no new covenant.



Grace stopped being extended to those who refused to turn back to God. For instance king Saul did not remain king. ("But Samuel said to Saul, “I will not return with you; for you have rejected the word of the Lord, and the Lord has rejected you from being king over Israel.”) Also, Solomon did not remain king. ('So the Lord said to Solomon, “Because you have done this, and you have not kept My covenant and My statutes, which I have commanded you, I will surely tear the kingdom from you, and will give it to your servant.") The ten northern tribes are yet another example of those who repeatedly broke the covenant and then did not return to it. We can stray from the path, but we must humbly repent and return to the path. He is always hoping, waiting and watching for his children to return, some never do.





God`s covenant with Abraham was done while Abraham(Abram) was in a deep sleep

Abraham had already made the covenant with God and had already been meeting the conditions of it when the ceremony you are thinking of took place. Covenants were often sealed with meals, sacrifices or something that's what was being done there. God later added circumcision to the covenant with Abraham and the covenant was confirmed many times, but the main covenant was explained and agreed to in Genesis 12.

"the Abrahamic covenant was always, and is still, in force." I'm not so sure the Abrahamic covenant is still in force. I have heard that, however that would suggest we should be circumcised. So I think that though the covenant is null and void, aspects of it are carried over to our new covenant (the need for trust/faith and faithfulness). Also there is the Hebrews scripture which says when a new covenant comes the old one is obsolete.

"an oath sworn by Almightly God to Himself is irrivocable and always in effect, no matter what." Praise God that's true. But He never said salvation is unconditional and in fact we are told there are conditions that must be met. For example, Jesus said we must forgive others to be forgiven. Also Jesus said if we disobey Him we do not love Him and He will not abide in us. Jesus said we must love others, bear fruit, repent, be baptized, etc., these are all conditions of the covenant, oaths made by God.

Can we be saved with unrepented sin in our life? I would suggest that there is no where in scripture where that is put forward. Would Jesus, all the prophets and all the apostles have said we must repent if we really did not need to? I can cry if I think of those who have said one prayer, got baptized, then go on to live unholy lives believing they are saved and have no need to repent of sin. (Some might say the were never converted, I would reply that if they were not it was because a faulty doctrine was taught to them.) So we can enter the covenant by faith and break it by not meeting it's conditions.

BUT, I keep in mind that sometimes repenting doesn't happen in an instant. For example, I know a man who struggled with his sexual addiction for several years, but he kept up the struggle and through reliance on God's Spirit overcame it. I believe God knew that man was struggling to repent and prevail, because of that effort the struggle was in affect the same as repentance. A repentant heart was there, wholehearted effort was being made. (I hope that makes sense.) This is just one example, we could come up with hundreds more, but the bottom line is that we must endure with our repentance and we must diligently examine ourselves for other areas of needed repentance. God is merciful, he is compassionate, but he is also just. ( I think you were saying this too.)

I truly believe that there must be a major shift in Christian thinking away from some of what what the reformers taught, like eternal security. I believe that what the reformers did was incredibly brave and should never be looked down on, they saved Christianity from certain destruction and they placed it in a more Biblical place than it had been. We must make a shift that is as great as their's was though. We must now see their errors and move back to the covenant way of thinking that is spelled out from cover to cover in scripture.
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#8 Charles Miles

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Posted 11 July 2012 - 10:52 AM

Steve, Great post and food for thought. I think we will see people in Heaven that will suprise us, for instance, Cyrus. Somehow I think he will be there. The Abrahamic covenant at the time of Abraham did indeed require circumcision, but the New Covenant speaks of circumcision of the heart, which means to me that one changes his/her heart to conform with God`s will as best they can....and this takes time and renewal of the spirit. You bring up an interesting point about not changing one`s ways after professing faith in Christ, but none of us are able to walk the perfect walk(even though we would like to do so). God certainly knows one`s heart and what is in it....but no man does. For me to say that one is not saved after believing Christ is the only Son of the living God and was resurected from death by the Father, would be(as I see it) judging someone`s heart that I cannot know. Worse than that, I feel that it would be saying that the sacrifice of Christ on the cross was not adequate and was incomplete. I think we both agree that the sacrifice was perfect, the mercy and grace are here, but possibly misunderstood by some. I`ll admit that I cannot fathom Infinity, and that would cover infinite grace and infinite mercy. Christ`s sacrifice was enough for all sin, for all men, and for all time. Christ went to the Heavenly Holy of Holies, presented His blood, and then sat down on the throne at the right hand of the Father, and I`m sure we both agree on that. When He sat down, all sin was forgiven legally, for all time. Now, men must accept that, and if they do, the sin nature is gone! Poof! There is a new creationmade at that instant that is the righteousness of God and salvation is assured. Now a greatful, humble, new creation that repents and attempts to do God`s will is what should arise. The sin is no longer coming from within, but is now an external factor created by satan who continually tells us that we are sinners and salvation is not a sure thing unless certain legalistic things are done to complete Christ`s sacrificde for us. But one must know that he knows, that once you are a born again child of God, NOTHING can separate you from the love of the Father. (Rom 8). I read Romans 8 every week, just to make sure it hasn`t been removed from the Bible.

#9 Thinker

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Posted 12 July 2012 - 03:36 PM

We so often fail to reach balance on an issue like this. Yes, once a person is truly saved, he or she is saved forever. The key word is truly. A truly saved person wants to please God. This springs from love and gratitude for God's love, mercy and grace. Yes, there will be times of sinning. However, there will be conviction, a troubled spirit, problems and other disciplinary measures brought to bear. A child of God doesn't want, for very long, to get away with sinning. A child of God cannot get away with sinning. There are consequences that range from mild to severe depending on the need. Once the sin(s) are confessed, forgiven and forsaken, there is relief and joy in the heart. Conversely, a person who only professes isn't much bothered over sin, is unlikely to let it go and really has no particular desire to please God. He or she lives to please self. (They may desire to not get God down on them for fear of what He might do). They can appear to be saved but have no real heart for God. A genuine Christian loathes sin, loves God and is grieved when he gives in to the flesh. He or she longs to have fellowship restored with the Lord and to walk in holiness. Fallen human nature prevails in those who are not saved. God's nature in His children will gradually overcome corrupt human nature and they, who are His, will give in to it less and less. (I John 1:6-10). Ron Pinkham (Thinker)

#10 StevePage

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Posted 13 July 2012 - 07:40 AM

I see the love and hope in Christians that wants that logic to be true, and I applaud that.

But, the reality of scripture is that Christians do not always stay the course. It is not true that, "His children will gradually overcome corrupt human nature and they, who are His, will give in to it less and less", though we all wish it were true.

We must realize that the epistles and Revelations were written to believers. The epistles were written and addressed to the ekklesia, the body of saved believers in a locale, not to the general population of folks who might be present when the letter was read aloud.

If the letter to the Ephesians was read at a house in Ephesus where believers met there may have been non-believers among them, but the letter was not written for or addressed to that mix, it was solely written to those who were saved believers who were baptized in to His body the church. Certainly we hope, and Paul hoped, unbelievers would benefit from the letters, but the letters were not evangelistic in purpose, they were instructions to those who were already saved and baptized.

Here's what I'm getting at; when the book of Hebrews' writer wrote, "be holy; without holiness no one will see the Lord", he was addressing and informing "holy brothers and sisters" of how they should be living and the consequences of not living that way.

We only need to read Galatians 5 to see that the Galatians were falling into sin and Paul said they were "…quickly deserting the one who called you to live in the grace of Christ…" He warned those born again believers that if they indulged in acts of the flesh they would "not inherit the kingdom of God."

Paul would not have been so worried about the Jewish agitators if it was absolutely guaranteed that not one saved person could possibly ever, in all of time, fall away.

To suggest that salvation cannot be lost is to suggest that there are no conditions to the New Covenant. There are conditions and God is just. He is perfectly just and he is merciful. To teach that it is impossible for a truly saved person to change their mind, turn from God and go back to sin is very dangerous and does not seem to agree with the epistles. We see throughout the Bible the folks did turn from their covenants with God.

Jesus even warned the apostles to remain in Him.

John 15:1 “I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. 2 He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful. 3 You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. 4 Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.
5 “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. 6 If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned."

I only hope to help some see that we see the principles the old and new covenants. If we could view what Jesus said, in the previous verses, through Hebrew eyes we would see that He is speaking of remaining in Him and that He is using Himself (as only He can) as an analogy for the New Covenant. Remaining in the covenant is to remain in Christ.

#11 Thinker

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Posted 13 July 2012 - 10:27 AM

Steve, There are a great many portions of Scripture that speak of the eternal security of a true believer. Here are only three, as examples:

"My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me 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. I and My Father are one" (John 10:27-30). (Note: This doesn't say 'If My sheep').

"Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God" (I John 3:9). (Note: One who is born of God does not make a habit of sinning. There will be failures but, as God disciplines and corrects, the basic pattern will be increasing holiness and decreasing sinning. If otherwise, this only confirms that the sinning one has not been born again).

"Being confident of this very thing, that He which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ" (Philippians 1:6). (Note: It doesn't say that God will stop working when a true child of His "messes up." He will work on that child, disciplining and correcting (sanctifying), until the day of Jesus Christ).




#12 StevePage

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Posted 14 July 2012 - 05:14 AM

Brother as you know any good Arminian can easily refute your use of those verses and throw several out that show eternal security is a Calvinist/Augustinian/Greek idea only. Of course you would come back with even more verses supporting your beliefs and that cycle would not end with anyone learning anything except how to support their own belief with select verses.

The thing we must get away from is pulling verses out of scripture to support our beliefs. Rather we must read the entire Bible and see that scripture does not support the reformers theories, it supports the principles that God has established since creation. Covenants have been present since Adam; they are the context that God has framed His relationship with man in since creation.

Every covenant has not been identical in its conditions or structure but they are covenants just the same. The New Covenant is the best and final covenant God has made with man on this earth. The one thing it has in common with every other covenant is that it has conditions. Those conditions must be met in order for man to remain in God’s favor. (John 15:10) As I have explained God id patient and generous with His grace, but we must still keep our face and hearts turned to him. We know Jesus will perfectly keep His side of the deal, the question is will man keep his side of the deal? Will every man who enters into this deal with God choose to stay or will some back out of it as I have shown that Saul, Solomon, and many others have?

What you are suggesting is that there are no conditions in the New Testament for a true believer. Please address only that one issue for now. Can you show me that there are no conditions in the New Testament for believers, other than believing? If you agree with me that there are conditions that must be met, what are those conditions?
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#13 Charles Miles

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Posted 14 July 2012 - 09:09 AM

Steve, I won`t argue theological points with another believer because we are told not to squabble among ourselves, but let`s just call this a discussion about salvation, OK? Your post mentioned John 15: 10 as stating conditions, but what are the conditions for? "If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father`s commandments, and abide in His love These things I have spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you". Christ was speaking to believers and attempting to tell them how to keep their joy and live in His Kingdom from that point on. I`m not sure it has much to do with salvation, or I certainly hope not. "Love one another even as I have loved you" is a stunning commandment, I think we will all agree. I know of no moral man/woman alive or dead(with the exception of Jesus) who could ever hope to love EVERYONE that much. I know you try and I try, but we fall pitifully short again and again and again. It does hinder our joy and complicates our life, but it does not remove my salvation. It does make our life more difficult and we should be convicted to try and change this.
The Abrahamic covenant was given Abram because of his faith, which was counted as righteousness (Rom 4: 13)and certainly he didn`t do everything God told him to do, but the covenant still held. For believers, we have a new covenant...For this is the covenant that I make wth the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their heart: and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people. For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their iniquities I will remember no more. (Heb 10: 10 and 12).
It is possible to lose the FAVOR of God, but not lose the salvation He gave to you. Prayer and repentance can and will restore you to God`s favor(good graces) but the salvation is a freely given gift and He will not remove that gift unless an unpardonable sin is committed(against the Holy Spirit).
Conditions for salvtion? 1. "Believe in your heart and mind that Jesus Christ is the Son of the Living God, was sacrificed, died, was buried, arose, and now sits in Heaven with the Father" (losely quoted from Rom 10 : 9). 2. Speak this with your mouth(confess it). What else could possibly be done on our part? The "renewal of the mind" will come if we work at it and truely believe what those 2 conditions mean. Romans 8: 1-2 There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life In Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death. The assurance of keeping God`s love is beatifully stated in Romans 8: 38-39.
I am convinced that once one truely believes and speaks it out loud he/she has becomethe very righteouness of God, and that produces salvation. I am notconvinced by logic, science, philosophy, or anything other than knowledge revealed by Holy Spirit while reading the WHOLE Bible. Conditions other that faith in the above comes full cicle back to legalism and the law. I am not saved because I do things(works) or meet conditions specified in the law....".For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth" Rom 10:4. The churc in Galacea dealt with people meeting criteria other than faith in order to be Christians, and Paul read them the riot act. Some were teaching that you had to first be circumcised, become a Jew, and then convert to Christianity. Galatians is a good read for all of us, but especially if one wants to put works and conditions other than faith as being needed for salvation.

May the Grace of our God and wisdom of Holy Spirit visit this topic,

Charlie

#14 StevePage

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Posted 14 July 2012 - 05:20 PM

Thank you for a great post Charles. I agree we should not argue, I hope we can explore what each other has to say without any of them.

In chapter 15 of John there are conditions and if the conditions are not met then Jesus said, "If anyone does not abide in me he is thrown away like a branch and withers; and the branches are gathered, thrown into the fire, and burned." Take notice that He is speaking to those who he said are already abiding in Him. 

Brother I think we all agree that we all fall and God forgives us, picks us up brushes us off and then assists us along our way. This is what we saw Abraham do. He messed up, made wrong choices and did things the Lord did not want him to do. But, keep in mind that Abraham always took Gods grace and then continued on with what he was supposed to do. In the end Abraham persisted and kept the conditions of the covenant.

I may be wrong but what I hear you saying is that it is impossible for any Christian to turn away from God and from the covenant and therefore lose salvation. I disagree because I see many examples of that exact thing happening in scripture and I previously gave examples of those who turned from God, did not turn back and who then lost their promise.


This New Testament/Covenant has conditions just as the old ones did. There are some major differences though. We enter the covenant through faith. We do not sacrifice, the one perfect sacrifice has been made. Grace has been present in every covenant. Conditions have been present in every covenant. For example every person in every covenant has been expected to obey God, repent and turn from sin, love God, love others, and be faithful to God.

"It is possible to lose the FAVOR of God, but not lose the salvation He gave to you." Please try to think of any covenant in scripture where that has been true. Adam lost eternal life because he broke his covenant. If Abraham had not left his home land and gone where God told him to he would never have received the promised son. If Noah had not built the ark he would not have been saved. David could have been as disobedient and turned from God as Saul did. Solomon did just that and lost his promise. Israel was unfaithfu,l without repentance, and lost their promise.

God has not changed. He still expects repentance, faithfulness and obedience. If we get off the narrow path (out of the covenant), he will do everything possible to get back to where we should be, but we must choose to go with Him and get back on the path. That is a choice we must make he does not force us to be faithful to Him or to repent.

In John 10:27-30 Jesus is describing how incredibly faithful He and the Father are, but he is not saying that a Christian is unable to turn from Them and leave the covenant. 

You know something? I know it seems impossible for any one to know God's grace and turn from it. But just think of the Israelis who saw God part that sea, and who then turned from him a short while later. And you know that God showed them grace again and again but they continually turned from Him again till he finally took His promise from them.

Why is a Christian any different than those Israelis, Saul, or Solomon?

It's not grace, there was always grace. There was always forgiveness.

Is it because of the Holy Spirit? No that can't be, because Saul had the Holy Spirit (1 Samuel 16:14) and God removed the Spirit from him after he continually turned from God. David pled with God not to remove His Spirit form him (Psalm 51). Why did God remove his Spirit and promise from Saul and not from David? It's because David repented, and Saul did not. David sinned, humbled himself and turned back to his Lord, Saul did not.

You see not everyone chooses to repent. We see it all through scripture. Some of those who are saved will return to sin and never turn back to God.

What else could possibly be done on our part?

Well Jesus said we must be baptized and repent. So we must believe, repent, be baptized, and confess with our mouth. Jesus also said we must bear fruit or be thrown in the fire, and he said we must obey Him. The writer of Hebrews said we must be holy or we won't see God. None of these are in the Law, they are not the works of the Law that Paul often wrote about, but they are commands that our Lord has told us to obey.

Also, Jesus and Paul both said we must endure in order to be saved.

Think about just that one condition for a moment, let's consider that condition Endurance.
(Matthew 10:22 You will be hated by all because of My name, but it is the one who has endured to the end who will be saved.
Matthew 24:12 Because lawlessness is increased, most people’s love will grow cold. 13 But the one who endures to the end, he will be saved.
2 Timothy 2:12 (written to Timothy a born again believer, not a false convert)
If we endure, we will also reign with Him; If we deny Him, He also will deny us…
Revelation 2:7 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes, I will grant to eat of the tree of life which is in the Paradise of God.’)

Do these words suggest that we can just decide to believe and we are saved? Think carefully about what is said in these verses. These verses are saying we MUST endure in our faith and we MUST endure in our love for the Lord, we must overcome. These are choices we must make and we must choose to have the will to endure and overcome over a long period of time (a lifetime). He does not say it is automatic or guaranteed that we will endure and be saved. He does not say He will overcome for us (though He will be with us a we struggle). We cannot be snatched from Jesus hand (he is ever faithful), yet only those who choose to endure will be saved (we must choose to be ever faithful).

We must remain faithful to the end to be saved. Yes we can mess up as David and Abraham did. But we must choose to repent and continue on. Our faith and love must endure, and we know from what Jesus said that most people's love will grow cold and they will not be saved. Some of those who are saved will return to sin and never turn back to God, their love for God will turn cold.

Peace Brother.





#15 Charles Miles

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Posted 15 July 2012 - 05:35 AM

Well written and spoken Steve. Question here...Do you love your wife? Of couse you do. If she breaks a rule of your household today, will you stiil love her tomorrow? Almost for sure, but you may be disappointed in her actions, but she remains your wife even though she may have broken the covenant of vows that say she will love and obey you(poor example I know). I`m sure God is disappointed in me many times every week, but He still loves me and He knows I am trying. I suppose the question underlying all this discussion is whether someone is a true believer, knows who he/she is(a child of God), knows what was done for them, and attempts as best he/she can to live a life pleasing to God. The difference in a true believer who has a relationship with God today, and the Israeli people in the old testiment is that the Holy Spirit "came upon" these people, would stay a while and then leave. Holy Spirit lives within the heart of the believer today and remains there unless told to leave. There is a difference.
God does not send anyone to hell, but He will allow you to choose where you want to spend eternity. Do you know anyone who had a personal relationship with the Father, understood the sacrifice of the Son, and who had the indwelling Holy Spirit, who one day got up and declared there to be no God, that Christ didn`t die on the cross for our sin, and asked the Holy spirit to leave his/her life and not return? I have never seen this, but I have seen people who were not exactly sure what to believe, had a weak faith that was more of a wish than true belief,and folded under in bad times. Were they ever really saved and a born again child of God? I don`t know. Once in the Father`s hand, He says He will lose not one, but will keep them safe. I suppose one could ask and demand to be released, and I would suppose that God would grant the person their free will choice. All I know is that I have turned all this over to the Father and try every day to do what He would have me do. I choose eternity with God the Father and cannot imagine why anyone would choose hell for eternity when the option of living with the Father is a free gift. I will tell anyone the story of how God made a plan of salvation and how to get the rewards.....Holy Spirit then is in charge and my responsibility is ended. What the person does in his heart is between him and Holy Spirit.
Is there resolution to ths question of losing salvation? I think so if one is a true believer, but it seems not so obvious to some. I certainly am glad this is not my call, but the Father`s. It is also not a problem for me because I made my choice and I plan to stick with it.
May God be with all of us and grant us mercy, lovingkindness, patience, and His ever abiding love.

Charlie

#16 StevePage

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Posted 17 July 2012 - 05:08 AM

Yes Charles I love my wife. But, in truth she could leave me tomorrow and never come back. If she did leave it would not mean that she never loved me and it wouldn't mean we were never married, it would mean that her love grew cold, she broke the covenant and left me.

I would do every thing I could to keep her, but I would not be able to stop her if she had her mind made up.

I see your point. It's nearly impossible for us to imagine that a person could know God's love and turn away from it. But we can't interpret the Gospel soley on our own love for God or our experience. I know my wife will never leave me. But I do know many who separate after decades of loving marriage, it's difficult to see how it could happen, but it does. They were in love they were married, but the love died and the marriage ended.

God never stops loving those who divorce Him, they stop loving Him.

Look at the similarities between what God said to Israel and Jesus says to us.
"Now if you obey me fully and keep my covenant, then out of all nations you will be my treasured possession." Exodus 19:5
"If you keep my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and remain in his love." John 15:10

Now look at what the writer of Hebrews teaches us.
"...and, once made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him." Hebrews 5:9

My point is we must love God, we must trust God and we must obey God. Without all three we are are not being faithful to our covenant with God. We must choose to stay in our covenant and we choose to be faithful. We see many examples both in life and in scripture of those who not to remain.

Bless you sir.
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#17 Charles Miles

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Posted 17 July 2012 - 09:28 AM

I understand how fickle the human race has become and probably always was. I often wonder about how long Adam and Eve were alive in the garden before they sinned and really changed the universe. I bet it wasn`t a week! Anyhow, God still loved both of them and was present, but the change was that there was a broken relationship and man was no longer in God`s favor. Wonder what would have happened if Adam had not hidden in the bushes, but just met with God as usual and confessed the misdeed, sin, disobedience, and told the Father that he was sorry and asked forgiveness. Interesting , but maybe not relevant here.
Can a saved person turn away from God and leave a relationship with the Father? Yes. And the repercussion for someone who KNOWS the truth and leaves is worse than someone who never knew the truth at all.. Does that mean he/she is no longer saved? Does it mean that the person never really was saved? Christ said that of those "in the Father`s hand" not one will be lost, so the question now becomes how do we know we are "in the hands of the Father"? I believe we can have salvation even if we are sinners(aren`t we all?), but not live a joyous life based around a daily relationship with the Lord. For the life of me, I can`t imagine living every day without the love and power of God in my life. Once I experienced the overpowering love of God and got into a personal relationship with Him, I realized what I was without Him.....nothing. I look back on my days lived in moral assent and realize that I was saved, but I was one miserable human being. There is so much more to what happened on Calvary than just salvation, but for true believers salvation happens with the belief and faith of the whole life and sacrifice of Jesus. The ongoing relationship with the Father enables us to live day to day, a life much more as it is in heaven. The fruits of the Holy Spirit are manifest in our lives and we have a true joy and desire to please the Father.....we do this by seeing the old nature dead and living as a new creation. Celebration of what God has done for us, realizing and being greatful for what was done, reckening the "old man" dead, and repenting for our mistakes daily are part of our walk, but faith in what was done and knowledge that it was done for us places us in the Lamb`s Book of Life....never to be removed from the hand of the Father. You will know a tree by it`s fruit and that is the way men look to see if someone is a child of God, but God knows what is in the man`s heart, He doen`t need to see the works because He knows the truth about us inside and out.
Can a believer leave the Graces of God and refuse to obey? Yes. David did it, Sampson did it, Moses did it, and we can go on and on, but the point is that God never left them and they all returned to the Father. Maybe a little different in the relationship, but they returned and He accepted them back into a relationship. Having a list of things to do to make a man "acceptable or good enough for salvation" just makes no sense to me. In fact Paul said that doing all the good deeds and works without the motive being the love of God, all these are clanging cymbols and loud noise that profit us not. After one becomes the "Righteousness of God" through faith, the works mean something and are credited to us, but salvation is given first and given because of faith. God already loves us.
We will never completely agree here but I have appreciated your thoughts and insight.
Peace,

Charlie
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#18 elizabethcog

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 03:21 AM

I used to drive myself crazy,thinking I had to understand it all just right and then try and convince people of MY understanding because I love them and care for them....While my intentions were good I realized I was not growingthe way God intended.I am the created so how did I ever come to think I knew how to grow better than He who created me?Well my pride I think,so the holy spirit corrected me and reminded me that this has already been figured out and I do not have to understand it all nor is it a requirement,his yoke is easy but only if I am willing to lay mine down.love in Christ=)
Jesus and Jesus alone saves=D

#19 StevePage

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 05:01 AM

"Having a list of things to do to make a man "acceptable or good enough for salvation" just makes no sense to me.

I understand what you wrote about motives and agree.

Having a list of things to do to make a man "acceptable or good enough for salvation" just makes no sense to me either. Please remember though, you said that, not me. I have only said obedience and following Christ's commands is about being faithful and nothing else.

Salvation is only for those who believe correctly and who are obedient. (Hebrews 5:9) Once you understand that you'll begin to understand what I've been saying.

I appreciate your heart Charles. I can understand why you believe as you do and pray we can all love God as you do one day.

God Bless

#20 Charles Miles

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 08:05 AM

Steve, you and I already love God, as do all the people on this forum. We love the Father and we try our best to always love our fellow man, but that gets hard to do at times....we try anyway. The important thing though is that we understand that God loves us, and always has. His love for us was from before time began and is so great we can`t comprehend all of it. All of us who love God because He first loved us try very hard to follow what He wants us to do. Rever Him as God and love one another. You ar correct about being obedient children of God and I`m sure all of us here try daily....we just often fail. Praise God for His mercy, grace, and patience with His children. Thank you Steve for some insights into scripture and for your faithfulness to the Lord.
May God bless you in your walk,

Charlie
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