Once Saved, Always Saved (A Response to an Email from an Online-Group Member)
I apologise for my not getting back to you sooner. I am a great procratinator at times, and this is one time in which I have done so. However, there are reasons which I have done so. One, spring is somewhat upon us us the Great White north as we are called in Northern Ontario, Canada. And when spring comes, I must get outdoors and get chores accomplished. That is a weak excuse, but I want to use somewhat, because also, you may or may not know, I broke my leg on Jan. 4th very badly. I broke both the Thibia and Fibia bones and fracturing one of them as well, splintering one up the middle. Oh yes, I did a good job of it. I slipped on a patch of ice and my upper body twisted to the right, my right foot stayed in place as if it was nailed in place. As I was falling, I could see exactly what was happening and said oh SH>>>>>>>>>>T., I Just broke my leg. I have never in all my 58 years, ever had a major break, but I knew exactly what was happening as I was falling as I heard a loud snap.
Well, that is only a part of my excuse at my explanation as to why I have been negligent in responding to your letter. It is partially because I have had to lay back for 6 weeks mending that I am now eager to get outside and move about and not spend much time online responding to letters. I am an avid outdoors person and hate being stuck indoors much.
And more to the real reason. It is that I wanted to spend time thoroughly in the Word, to study and respond from the perspective of what the Lord would have me to say, rather than from my own human point of view. I have given much thought, Biblically persepctively, yet I still do not wanty to rush into an answer.
Both Rob and --- have given very good Biblical responses, of which I totally agree with. Yet, I still would like to add to. And I will still do so, but please give me a bit more time and I will try to get back to you within a day or two. I want to make sure, again, this is a response of how the Lord would have me to respond, and not my own thinking.
On a quick thought or two, you quote from Hebrews is not quite a good one in that the letter was written to believing Jews who were reverting back to the Old Judaic laws and ways, and forgetting that those laws are now done away with as long as they are believers, and followers of the New Way. The New Testament, because of what Jesus did by dying on the cross to forgive all sins, if we but belive that He did so, when He hung on the cross in payment for the penalty of sins for all people, both Jew and Gentile is now the New Testament. The Old Testament of sacrificing animals in our places with their blood is no longer needed. Please forgive me at this time for not producing Biblical verses. I would like to to back up what I am saying with Bible verses, but it is getting late in the evening for me and I want to say much more to qualify my words with Bible verses to back all that I say.
I believe that you are saved. In that I mean, there is only one thing, and only one thing alone that can save us from going to hell. And that is the belief of the work that Jesus did on the cross for the sins of all who believe that His death on the cross alone will pay for the penalty of your sins, my sins an all the sins of all the people ever born from all time from the time of Adam till now and till He comes again. You may sin now, and again and again. We all do. That is no excuse to sin but, and that is a big KING SIZED BUT, once forgiven of sins, once believed is a guarantee of the forgiveness of sins. Otherwise, He would have to come back again and again on the cross for the sins of all. That program of coming back again once a year was done away with very long ago in the Old Testament times, otherwise He would not have said while hanging on the cross: It is finished. That statement meant just that. The Old Testament laws were done away with. The New Testament Law was now in place. Ones sins were now forgiven, once and for all, forever, by no longer the once a year sacrifice of animals on the altar, but by believing that his sacrificial death, His shedding of blood on the cross, His body broken, for your sins, was once and for all accomplished on the cross.
So, yes, you may go on in your sins. But, if you sincerely believe that His death on the cross paid the penalty of your sins once and for all, then, though you may continue in your sins, you are still saved.
However, you will still pay, if you continue on in your sins after, or even now in life.
To continue is disobedience to Him.
And, as in the forces, disobedience will be meted out. Sometimes, disciplinary action is not handed out immediately, not even in the military right away. It may be withheld, and dealt with at a later time. Likewise, the punishment of Satan is also being withheld. That is not to say you will not be saved, but punishment will come in one form or another, perhaps by way of physical pain and suffering, perhaps by way of future pain and suffering, to you your relatives now and later, or later in and after the resurrection. Gifts may be taken away in the there and now, or after in heaven, which is very sad.
Why do you continue on in knowing sin, even though you know better? I am not here to condemn. Nor would I. I am a sinner, like you, who falls often in one way or another. All do.
Perhaps you do so, because you have not thoroughly believed that he can forgive you of your sins.
Allow me to give you a testimony of one who was a bad ass, worse than perhaps you ever were.
He was the Head of the Satan's Choice. A rival of the Hell's Angels. He went by the moniker of "Mother" in the chapter in St. Catharines Ontario, Canada. He was as bad as they come with the ordering of murders, drugs and you name it it. His name was as good as dead, because the Hells Angels had a hit against him, if ever found.
I do not know how it came about, but, one day he came into the church where my sister was attending down in Southern Ontario, and he confessed his sins and gave testimony to the congregation. Does Jesus forgive him of his past criminal life? You betcha! Can He forgive you? You betcha!
Rob and or --- said not to listen to the lies and words of Satan and his followers. They, Satan and his followers would love to have you to believe that you are worthless, and not worthy to be saved. That is a lie from the pit of hell. Whom will you believe? The words of the master of deception and Satan himself? Or would you rather believe the words of One who has never lied, nor will ever lie, God, Jesus in the flesh. Satan and his legion would have you believe that because you continue in sins, that you are headed to hell. Where does the Bible ever say such as that? Did Jesus die for just one of your sins? Or did He die for all of your sins, past, present and future For we all sin in one manner or another every day. If we all sin every day, and if we are not saved from our sins past, present and future, then Jesus died for nothing. His death on the cross then is meaningless.
Read carefully and study Romans chapter 8, especially 8:31-39. This is the strongest argument given by the apostle Paul why and for eternal security. Once saved always saved. God is for you you. Nothing in heaven hell or earth, nothing above below, nothing created, nothing in the spiritual realm can ever separate you from the love of God. That means in the strongest terms, that though you may sin, you are still saved from God's eternal wrath and judgment upon you. He will not condemn you to hell unless you reject the Son, Jesus Christ. And the only rejection is to not believe that Jesus Christ died on the cross once and for all, forever for your sins, past, present and future, for the penalty of your sins. That is the only sin that anyone can ever commit to and not be saved.
Do not beat up on yourself any longer. Do not believe the lies of the enemy any longer.You have miltary training. I have also had military training in the past. One thing that stands out is discipline. You are trained to take orders and not question them. Your trainers were human and prone to error, yet you were disciplined well enough that you carried out your orders without question. God is without error. Therefore, do you not think that you should not also carry out His orders without question? Is He not the more wise? Did He nor create you and know what is best for you in all walks and areas of your life?
You own a vehicle I am guessing. When repairs are needed you either take your vehicle to a mechanic or you do it yourself. Either way, the one doing the repairs must follow the manual or the repairs done will be faulty. God is your creator. He has the manual for you life in the written Word we have as the Bible. Should we not also obey and follow the rules and guide within to live a healthy, wise, productive life, that we may tick and run well according to the designer of our lives? To do so is folly, it is foolish. No more so than to not follow the car maual.
We have built within us a manual. We do not need the Written Word before us to know what is right and what is wrong. It is written within our hearts as is written in Romans chapter one. People around the world in tribal countries who have never heard the Word have a knowledge, a knowing and belief that there is within us a code of ethics, morals written within our hearts, knowing what is wrong and what is right.
So why do we fight against and not follow the manual to repair the fault with our moral vehicle? It is because sin lives within us which causes us to make choices daily to obey the moral manual of life, or to follow the corrupted version which breaks and causes the breakdown of our mortal vehicles.
How can we get back on track and repair the damage done by corrosion, by the breaking down of the viscosity of the oil of the Holy Spirit that makes us to run smoothly, the timing of the spark of life that is granted us by our creator? Are we doomed to watch the moral decay of the body, flesh, spirit and soul which God has crafted so wisdomly? Shall we throw in the towell and call the race of life lost because we have not the strength of ourselves, of new oil of the Holy Spirit to renew and give us strength to move on and live and run with new vigor just because we wish to not follow the moral code, the eclectrolisis of life to carry on and die the death of our discarded old vehicle?
No, I say No! God loves you so much, that He gave His only begotten Son, that WHOEVER should believe in Him, shall not perish, but have eternal life. John 3:16 paraphrased. Do not as Gandalf said to the warrior "give up your life so rashly" in the Lord of the Rings.
Your life was bought with a price. That price was the gift of Jesus dying on the crosss a little over 2,000 yerars ago. Your life is more precious to Jesus than all the wealth in all the world. Your life is more precious to Him than all the created heavens. He sought out and bought and sold and traded all the pearls to grant you eternal life, to grant you a life imortal. He loves you so much that He gave His own life for you.
So, how to get back on track. Get rid of, once and for all, all those things which distract you from Him. Get rid of the porn. Get rid of the people who drag you down with them in a life of degradation. Walk away from them. Take all the trash off your computer. Trash your computor if you have to take such a drastic action as that as to turn out life back to Jesus. Do not wallow any longer in the mud, in the vomit of pigs who return to it time and time again.
As a drunk can only stop drinking by no longer returning to the bottle, stop going to the bars, the liquor stores, the drunked people, you must also once and for all turn away, make a 180 degree turn away from what is causing you harm, and turn to Jesus. Would you consel your child, your nephew, your niece to go back to taking poison if it is killing them? Then why would you also return to what is destroying you?
Your life is a gift of God, a priceless pearl bigger and worth more than all the jewels of the world. Live for Him, giving thanks.
I can not say more. It is now up to you. It is a choice for you to make. Do not, I plead, throw away your life so rashly as to live as if God does not exist, as if there is no consequence to sin. The consequence though it may not be hell for you, would still be a tradgedy if you continue willfully in sin.
Your life living for Him is like the sound of a well tuned racing car. It is pleasing to His ears. Will you not now, give Him your life. Allow Him, now and forever, to run your life, to take full control. For, it is only then that you will have victory.
One last thought. Jesus when He came to earth set His mind to go to the cross for you. If you were the only human on earth, He would have still have gone to the cross and hung Himself up there for you, because He loves you so. He set His mind to go to the cross. In the military, you also are trained to set your mind to a goal which you will not turn away from. Turn now, once again to a goal set before you by the giver of life and run the race which is set before you. Live for Him, if not for nothing else.
I suppose I now have no real reason now to go to scripture, to back up my comments, because all that I have written is written in all of our hearts. But, may I suggest that you go to scripture now and as long as you live daily, first in the morning when you wake up and spend some good quality time with Him in His Word, just as you would in the polishing of your boots to the extent, that as in the mirror of a polished boot, you see Him, in yourself, when you see the refelction of Him in you in a mirror. Then as you read and study and meditate on what you have read and studied, eat it as you would your favourite food, ingesting it, digesting it, contemplating it, reasoning it all out, so that when and while you have done that in reading, studying, meditating and in prayer, that you will again see Him in you as He is reflected upon your polished boot of life in your heart, that you may live and reflect Him, to others who see you as in a reflection of a well polished boot.
May God bless you and be reflected through you to others that He may be glorified through you to the world.
In His name
Fellowship is indeed not a perquisite for salvation. John 3:16 makes it plain the simple plan of salvation very simple. "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." (King James Version)
Fellowship however is important to our growth spiritually. When we rub shoulders and have camaraderie with fellow believers, we are encouraged, uplifted, given free advice etc. Without the fellowship of fellow believers we are like a ship in the ocean drifting about with no sail. We are open to deception and various other suggestions which will cause us to stray us from the Lord and our path to eternity with Him.This why it is extremely important to not only be in fellowship with other fellow believers, but to be also in fellowship in a Bible Believing church.
Scripture is replete with wisdom towards the need for fellowship with other believers.
Ex. Ecleccesiates 4:9-12 "Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labour. For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow: but woe to him that is alone when he falleth; for he hath not another to help him up. Again, if two lie together, then they have heat: but how can one be warm alone? And if one prevail against him, two shall withstand him; and a threefold cord is not quickly broken." (King James Version)
I could give you a very many more scriptures showing you of the need and importance of fellowhipping with others. Please make sure you stay in fellowship with fellow believers if you value you spiritual state with God and your own sanity.
Don't Give up the Fight!
However, all these quotations are seeds of lies planted in our minds by the evil one who hates us and wants our destruction. He jumps for joy when a child of God gives up the fight and plays the woe is me game. God says no way. He will not forsake you. The solution is firstly to turn to Him in prayer believing that He can and will change you from the inside out.