What did you do to gain salvation and what can you do to lose it?

ONCE SAVED ALWAYS SAVED?

(2Co 4:7) And we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the Excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us;

(1Co 12:13) for also in one Spirit we all to one body were baptized, whether Jews or Greeks, whether servants or freemen, and all into one Spirit were made to drink,

(Rom 8:9) And ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God doth dwell in you; and if any one hath not the Spirit of Christ--this one is not His;

(2Co 13:5) examine yourselves, whether you are in the faith, prove your own selves. Do you not know your own selves, that Jesus Christ is in you, unless you are reprobates?

(Eph 2:8) For by grace you are saved through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God, (Eph 2:9) not of works, lest anyone should boast.

(Rom 11:6) But if by grace, then it is no more of works; otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it is of works, then it is no more of grace; otherwise work is no more work.

Thank you for your web site. Did you know that it is only by the Spirit of God, that we are saved, kept in His Grace. What is this gangling of words about OSAS, yes, this is the above Word of God. The truly Saved are saved, those that are not sure, have been toying with God and His Word, like the 4 kinds of ground! The real Christians are getting harder to recognize, but the sure test, is the Godship of Jesus.

(Hebrews 10:26-27 NIV) [26] If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, [27] but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God.

(Ezekiel 18:21-24 NIV) [21] "But if a wicked man turns away from all the sins he has committed and keeps all my decrees and does what is just and right, he will surely live; he will not die. [22] None of the offenses he has committed will be remembered against him. Because of the righteous things he has done, he will live. [23] Do I take any pleasure in the death of the wicked? declares the Sovereign LORD. Rather, am I not pleased when they turn from their ways and live?
[24] "But if a righteous man turns from his righteousness and commits sin and does the same detestable things the wicked man does, will he live? None of the righteous things he has done will be remembered. Because of the unfaithfulness he is guilty of and because of the sins he has committed, he will die.

(Galatians 5:2-4 NIV) [2] Mark my words! I, Paul, tell you that if you let yourselves be circumcised, Christ will be of no value to you at all. [3] Again I declare to every man who lets himself be circumcised that he is obligated to obey the whole law. [4] You who are trying to be justified by law have been alienated from Christ; you have fallen away from grace.

(Mark 9:42-48 NIV) [42] "And if anyone causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to be thrown into the sea with a large millstone tied around his neck. [43] If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life maimed than with two hands to go into hell, where the fire never goes out. [45] And if your foot causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life crippled than to have two feet and be thrown into hell. [47] And if your eye causes you to sin, pluck it out. It is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into hell, [48] where "'their worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched.'"

(John 15:6 NIV) If anyone does not remain in me, he is like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned.

(Romans 2:7-8 NIV) [7] To those who by persistence in doing good seek glory, honor and immortality, he will give eternal life. [8] But for those who are self-seeking and who reject the truth and follow evil, there will be wrath and anger.

(Galatians 6:8-9 NIV) [8] The one who sows to please his sinful nature, from that nature will reap destruction; the one who sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life. [9] Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.

My response is in Green:

These too are the words of God and they all show choice in our salvation. We choose to either continue in the faith or not.

(2 Peter 1:5-9 NIV) [5] For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; [6] and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; [7] and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love. [8] For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. [9] But if anyone does not have them, he is nearsighted and blind, and has forgotten that he has been cleansed from his past sins.

Forgiven of "past" sins. Yes God will keep us as long as we want to be kept, but He does not force salvation on us in the first place and He will not force us to continue to follow Jesus either.

Ralph

Ralph,

Thanks for the prompt response. I appreciate your honest communication about the Word of God! I find now a days, that most persons are very ignorant about what the Word says! Entertainment, has become god in their life's. Most Christians can be put to shame by those Cults, that go around, who know what the Word says! They have their literature and can defend their point of view, only to a point.

One think I find, and had to take time is that, "Leaning also means Un-Learning" Job ch. 38-40 states this! So does Isaiah 1:18

What did you do to earn your salvation in Christ? Absolutely nothing! What can you do to loose it? Absolutely nothing! If you could loose it, then it wouldn't be Eternal Life/Salvation would it? It would be 'temporary salvation which,' could be terminated by our works." That is not salvation taught in the Word of God. Salvation is By Grace Alone, Eph 2:8,9 and 'Not Of Works-Lest any man should Boast!' If it is by God's Grace, what can we do to loose it?

You see, most persons try and validate their existence, by their allegiance to some sect, belief system, job, neighborhood, area of the country they live in. Their clothes, their house, their mate and too many other things to try and list! The only validation anyone needs is, 'The Word of God!'

Recently I answered an e-mail from someone that had posted a web site about divorce and remarriage. I responded to the question with a series of 'Biblical' responses. I also stated that I had seen much on the internet that people were using to 'validate their actions and lifestyle!' I asked the person who owned the web site if he was using the site for such a thing. I asked him, if he was remarried and did he use this for justification? He and his father are both ministers. I was told, 'to stop writing!'

Strange, like arm pits, we all have more than one 'Opinion!' But, it is not my opinion, nor your opinion that counts. Its the Word of God! That is the "Only Opinion that counts!" When Christ Jesus died on the Cross over 2000 years ago, 'did he pay for all sin for all time?' Of course he did. He paid for my sins, past, present and future! Yours also! That is why He said, "IT IS FINISHED!" John 19:30

That payment, was once, for all time and eternity. My name was written in the Lamb's Book of Life, and I was washed with the Blood of Christ! That washing cannot be removed, just like the payment to God, for my sins, with the Blood of Christ, can not be REFUNDED to God!

One simple way to look at this, is that in the Courthouse of God, the payment for all sin for all time has been paid by Christ Jesus, the God Man! There will be 'no reversal of the payment nor reversal of the judgment!' This causes many persons grief because they miss the fact, that we, as human beings, can 'Fake our Salvation!' Enough church, singing, bible reading, and the like, 'does not mean that the transaction has taken place in Heaven!' 'Only the Lord knows those that are really His!' See 2Cor 11:13-45 Who are those? They call themselves 'christians' [small 'c'] What are they really?

Paul told those to "Prove themselves, 2Cor 13:5" One last verse that I will leave with you is this one;

(1John 2:18) Little youths, it is the last hour; and even as ye heard that the antichrist does come, even now antichrists have become many--where as we know that it is the last hour; (1Jo 2:19) out of us they went forth, but they were not of us, for if they had been of us, they would have remained with us; but--that they might be manifested that they are not all of us.

Your e-mail kind of bothers me. The reason is that you keep telling me that God's word is the only thing that makes any difference. I agree, but you totally dismissed all the Scriptures I gave you and used ideas instead. For example you used the idea that eternal life can't be eternal if it can be lost. First let me stress I don't believe eternal life can be lost, but I do believe you can choose to no longer have it. But let me get back to the original idea that eternal life can't be eternal life if it can be lost. Why? We are all under a spiritual death sentence to eternal damnation, yet those of us who have placed our faith in Jesus Christ have been freed from that. Does that mean it was not truly eternal damnation in the first place? Of course not.

The word games mean nothing, as you said it matters what God's word says. I have already quoted a bunch of passages which show that a person can choose to walk away from the faith. You asked what I did to earn my salvation. Of course I did nothing to earn it. Then you go on to say if I did not do anything to earn it how can I do anything to lose it. There is a problem with your thinking here.

Salvation is not by works, it is by faith! But that faith is my faith. So if God requires my faith in order for me to obtain salvation, why can't He also (as I believe the Bible clearly shows) require me to continue in the faith to retain my salvation? Neither of which are works. Let me requote something that Jesus said:

(John 15:6 NIV) If anyone does not remain in me, he is like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned.

"If anyone does not remain in me" To remain you have to have been there to start with.

(Colossians 1:21-23 NIV) [21] Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior. [22] But now he has reconciled you by Christ's physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation--[23] if you continue in your faith, established and firm, not moved from the hope held out in the gospel. This is the gospel that you heard and that has been proclaimed to every creature under heaven, and of which I, Paul, have become a servant.

"If you continue in your faith" Again you can't continue in something you never had to start with. I would urge you to do what you told me to do, take God's word for it says not your own thoughts.

I want to requote one more passage that I quoted in the first reply:

(Mark 9:42-48 NIV) [42] "And if anyone causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to be thrown into the sea with a large millstone tied around his neck. [43] If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life maimed than with two hands to go into hell, where the fire never goes out. [45] And if your foot causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life crippled than to have two feet and be thrown into hell. [47] And if your eye causes you to sin, pluck it out. It is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into hell, [48] where "'their worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched.'"

Take a long hard look at this passage. What was Jesus talking about? First let's start at the beginning. If all sins are forgiven at the moment of salvation, including those which the person has not yet committed, then what is the big deal about making one of these little ones sin? After all it has already been forgiven anyway. Next what is Jesus trying to say about plucking out eyes and cutting off hands, etc...?

We know one thing for sure, Jesus did not believe that a sinner could get into heaven by not sinning anymore. So that means that Jesus was not talking to sinners. The context of the passage will show this too. That means that He was speaking to believers. If their sins have already been forgiven, even though they have not committed them yet, then why would Jesus tell them it is better to pluck out an eye or cut off a limb than to sin and be thrown into hell?

We cannot continue to sin after salvation. The Bible is clear about that, as many of the passages I quoted show. You use the idea that because Jesus said "it is finished" while on the cross that all our sins are forgiven past, present and future. That makes no sense. Yes He finished the work, but our sins were not forgiven until we placed faith in Jesus Christ. If they were then you are preaching universalism and everyone has been forgiven.

Now many OSAS teachers try to say that our faith has nothing to do with out salvation. They teach this because they have to in order to continue to teach OSAS. Yet the Scripture clearly shows that we are saved by 'faith' as this next passage says:

(Romans 5:1-2 NIV) [1] Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, [2] through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God.

"Justified through faith," "gained access by faith into this grace" Yes God's grace is what saves us but only after we place our faith in Jesus Christ. Why does it bother you that we must continue in the faith?

(Luke 7:48-50 NIV) [48] Then Jesus said to her, "Your sins are forgiven."
[49] The other guests began to say among themselves, "Who is this who even forgives sins?"
[50] Jesus said to the woman, "Your faith has saved you; go in peace."

"Your faith has saved you" yet the Bible clearly shows that we are not saved by works. So my point is that if God requires faith and it is faith that saves us and yet it is not a work, then why would continuing in the faith be a work? It wouldn't!!

Again you use words to form ideas and then make doctrinal statements based on them. You said you have been washed by the blood of Christ and nothing can undo that washing. I would agree, but does that mean you cannot further dirty yourself with sin and those not be covered by the original washing? Let's see what God's word has to say:

(Revelation 3:1-6 NIV) [1] "To the angel of the church in Sardis write:
These are the words of him who holds the seven spirits of God and the seven stars. I know your deeds; you have a reputation of being alive, but you are dead. [2] Wake up! Strengthen what remains and is about to die, for I have not found your deeds complete in the sight of my God. [3] Remember, therefore, what you have received and heard; obey it, and repent. But if you do not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what time I will come to you.
[4] Yet you have a few people in Sardis who have not soiled their clothes. They will walk with me, dressed in white, for they are worthy. [5] He who overcomes will, like them, be dressed in white. I will never blot out his name from the book of life, but will acknowledge his name before my Father and his angels. [6] He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches."

Now I will be the first person to admit that Revelation is often hard to understand, but I think this passage is pretty clear. This is a church, a church that at one time was what Jesus wanted them to be, but who now is in trouble. We know that they are not completely dead, because Jesus tells them to wake up and strengthen what remains and is about to die. Now let me address my main point. Jesus talks about those who have not soiled their clothes.

The first thing to remember is that you can't soil something you don't have. So more of Sardis than just these people had the clothes Jesus was talking about, yet they soiled them. Those who did not soil their clothes, Jesus says, will walk with Him dressed in white. This is a picture of eternal life. We know that all human beings have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, so we also know that these people who did not soil their clothes, are not people who have never sinned. Another point that has to be made is that we are all soiled by sin to start with, until, as you said, we are washed with the blood of Christ. So for Jesus to mention people who have not soiled their clothes, those clothes must have been washed. So we can conclude that those who did soil their clothes were also washed at one time.

My point is that Jesus is describing what you claim is impossible, that is to soil ourselves after being washed in His blood. I am not talking about stumbling and falling into a sin. I believe that if we stumble and fall and then confess our sins we retain our salvation because we have remained in the faith, but if we walk away from Christ and live as an unbeliever, then we become soiled and are unbelievers.

(Romans 2:7-8 NIV) [7] To those who by persistence in doing good seek glory, honor and immortality, he will give eternal life. [8] But for those who are self-seeking and who reject the truth and follow evil, there will be wrath and anger.

(2 Peter 2:17-21 NIV) [17] These men are springs without water and mists driven by a storm. Blackest darkness is reserved for them. [18] For they mouth empty, boastful words and, by appealing to the lustful desires of sinful human nature, they entice people who are just escaping from those who live in error. [19] They promise them freedom, while they themselves are slaves of depravity-for a man is a slave to whatever has mastered him. [20] If they have escaped the corruption of the world by knowing our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and are again entangled in it and overcome, they are worse off at the end than they were at the beginning. [21] It would have been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than to have known it and then to turn their backs on the sacred command that was passed on to them.

How can what Peter wrote (under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit) be true if there were no possibility of walking away? How can it be worse for someone who is "again entangled" and "overcome" by the world? You can't be "again entangled" in something unless you were once freed. Notice that they "have escaped the corruption of the world by knowing our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ."

(James 5:19-20 NIV) [19] My brothers, if one of you should wander from the truth and someone should bring him back, [20] remember this: Whoever turns a sinner from the error of his way will save him from death and cover over a multitude of sins.

James seems to think that there is a possibly of walking away, or as he says 'wandering' from the truth. Again I ask, so what, if our sins are forgiven past, present and future, why even include these passages in the Bible? Now many OSAS teachers will say that James is talking about physical death, not spiritual death. Does that make any sense in context? No it doesn't. When James wrote this people were being martyred in horrible ways, so I don't think that the thought of God taking them home early because of sin would have bothered them a lot.

This brings up a philosophical problem I have with OSAS. You have seen at least one of my suicide pages, I have over a hundred of them. About 50 of those pages were messages written to me by "Christians" who are so depressed with life that they are contemplating taking their own lives. Many of these people are upset with God because they have begged Him to kill them and take them home, yet He has kept them alive, so now they are thinking of suicide. Now with that in mind, think about the OSAS teaching that Christians who sin too much will be taken home to heaven so that God can stop them from sinning. That idea is repugnant to me. To think that God would kill a Christian who is sinning and in effect reward them by taking them to heaven, while leaving a struggling believer here to continue to suffer.

No, death is spiritual death, the only reason OSAS can't see this is because it would make their doctrine fall like a house of cards. Look at Ananias and Sapphira. Their punishment according to OSAS was to be taken home to heaven immediately. The only other option is to say that they were not true believers in the first place. But that does not hold water either, because if they were non-believers then they were doing what non-believers do, sin. The only way that story makes any sense at all is if they were believers and understood what they were doing. If they deliberately did this then they in effect walked away from the faith and God punished them on the spot.

(Romans 11:17-24 NIV) [17] If some of the branches have been broken off, and you, though a wild olive shoot, have been grafted in among the others and now share in the nourishing sap from the olive root, [18] do not boast over those branches. If you do, consider this: You do not support the root, but the root supports you. [19] You will say then, "Branches were broken off so that I could be grafted in." [20] Granted. But they were broken off because of unbelief, and you stand by faith. Do not be arrogant, but be afraid. [21] For if God did not spare the natural branches, he will not spare you either.
[22] Consider therefore the kindness and sternness of God: sternness to those who fell, but kindness to you, provided that you continue in his kindness. Otherwise, you also will be cut off. [23] And if they do not persist in unbelief, they will be grafted in, for God is able to graft them in again. [24] After all, if you were cut out of an olive tree that is wild by nature, and contrary to nature were grafted into a cultivated olive tree, how much more readily will these, the natural branches, be grafted into their own olive tree!

"They were broken off because of unbelief" and "you stand by faith." That seems pretty clear to me, but go further. "Do not be arrogant, but be afraid. For if God did not spare the natural branches, he will not spare you either." How would they be cut off? By unbelief, if they do not continue in the faith.

I urge you to read the Bible for what it says, not what other people make it out to say and not through the filter of some doctrine which if you took what the Bible says for what it says would fall.

We have eternal life, but that does not mean we can't give it up. Adam and Eve had immortality but they chose to give it up, does that mean they were not truly immortal? No it means they were immortal until they sinned. That is when death came into creation.

Ralph

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