Wednesday, July 7, 2010

"One of the most dangerous doctrines in Christendom is once saved always saved...

.....because it lures a person into a false sense of security" is a quote taken directly from a teaching of the pulpit. When reading this, a big old sigh escaped from my lips. So much error. So, let me get this straight, trusting in Jesus is a form of false security? The entire basis of this person's teaching was that God is still holding our sins against us. That cannot be farther from the truth. This came from the lips of someone who professed to believe in God, and holds that Jesus is the son of God.

To begin with, we see that the Bible tells us of two important covenants: The Old Covenant (Torah, Law, 1st 5 books of Moses) and the New Covenant (ushered in at the cross of Jesus). Why is this important and what does that have to do with me? Glad you asked. Too often, Christians are encouraged to live by the "whole Bible" "full gospel" Christians. However, the Gospel that saves is not trying to live by the "whole Bible", but rather we find the gospel in the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Paul tells the Corinthians: "Now brothers, I want to remind you of the Gospel I preached to you... by this gospel you are saved...for what I received, I passed on to you as of first importance: Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the scriptures." I Corinthians 5:1~4 We put our trust in Jesus; our faith is in (or should be in) Jesus. Too often the nay-sayers feel that we, ourselves have to do enough good works to counter the bad works. 
Confession time: I am really tired of the phrase "once saved always saved" as much as I am of it's counter part: "once saved not always saved". Both seem so..... shallow. No depth at all. 

One thing that helps to understand Salvation it to know what it is: Eternal Life. Eternal what? Life. What kind of life? Eternal. Got it? Good. So, from here on out, we'll not think of salvation as merely an eternal fire insurance policy. 

So how was this brought about? As Paul reminded us earlier, Jesus died for our sins. Exactly what does this mean? John tells us "Behold the lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!"  (John 1:29) The sin of the world. So, exactly who sin does this include? The world's. From Adam to the last baby born to the human race. The entire world. Not just the world at the time, or who were before, or will be after; but the entire world. How can this be? We still sin. Yes, we do, but our sin has been take away from God. When Jesus died, gave his entire being, body and blood, that sacrifice satisfied God. Hebrews 10:12 tells us that when Jesus offered for all time one sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God. It was a done deal. Which time was the sacrifice good for? All time. Again--back to Adam forward to the last baby born-all time. 

So, while we appreciate the sacrifice Jesus made, are we SURE God's not holding ANY of our sins against us? Let's take a look at a few more scripture: "Father, forgive them, they know not what they do" (Luke 23:34) Do you suppose God forgave? Or did He tell Jesus "no"? We're not shown than any of the crowd gathered asked God to forgive them. Jesus, not the people, asked God to forgive. Jesus gave His life, and having done so, sat down. The people; humanity; the world was now totally forgiven. As a reminder, Paul wrote the Corinthians: "All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men's sins against them" (II Corinthians 5: 18-19)
How in the world, then, can we read these scriptures, and think that God is some big bad ogre in the sky, waiting to zap us whenever we sin? It is important to know that God is NOT DEALING WITH MANKIND ON THE BASIS OF HIS SIN. 

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