[John 15:6] If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned.
[John 15:10] 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.
[John 15:12] This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you.
1. It is all about FREEDOM.
2. If I say, "there is nothing I can do to loose my salvation", I have given up my freedom to choose.
3. I believe that God gave each of us FREE WILL. The right to choose. To stay or to go. Heaven or Hell.
4. When we ask Jesus to be our Lord and Savior, He and the Father hold us in their hands. But this is not a clenched fist. The hand of God is an open hand. Otherwise, He could not say - the truth will set you free. We are free to come and go as we please.
[Ezek 18:24.4] But when the righteous turneth away from his righteousness, and committeth iniquity, and doeth according to all the abominations that the wicked man doeth, shall he live? All his righteousness that he hath done shall not be mentioned: in his trespass that he hath trespassed, and in his sin that he hath sinned, in them shall he die.
5. I am free. If one day this very stupid man, turned his back on God and the Lord and the riches of Heaven (perish the thought!) - of his own FREE WILL - how could he expect God to let him in? For when we step outside the gates of our City of Refuge, our City of Grace, this protective umbrella of the Blood and Name of Christ, we step into the LAW, and:
[Gal 5:4.19] Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace.
It is mocking God to sin in the name of Jesus.
[Exod 20:7] "You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain; for the LORD will not hold him guiltless who takes his name in vain.
6. Please notice Ezekiel 18:24. According to the New Testament authors, Jesus is OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS:
[Rom 1:17.6] For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.
It is possible to TURN AWAY FROM OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS. That is, turn away from Jesus and God, when you sin. Our salvation depends on a committed focus on Jesus and keeping the commandments of God.
7. Jesus wants us to be perfect. To live a Holy life.
8. [Mark 9:23.9] Jesus said unto him, If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth.
Even OBEYING GOD.
Discussion on Salvation & CHEAP GRACE Continued:
In this discussion on salvation, the key person to read is Jesus himself and what He says about salvation. Then go back to Paul and read his words in the context of what Jesus said.
An important point to remember: freedom. Would you be truly free, if we could NOT give up on God and the salvation of Jesus?
Though, salvation unto Heaven is what you would think most people would want, many today make a genuine confession of faith, get baptized, go to church, and after a few or many years, give up their faith in Christ in favor of the world and the flesh and the devil.
If salvation could not be lost, then these ones, who give up on Christ, would NOT loose their salvation, even though their faith only lasted for an instant.
In scripture it is obvious, FAITH comes in quantities. The questions come:
Another question that needs to be addressed: If those who believe in Christ cannot loose their salvation, why is the devil still bothering me?
If one could not loose their salvation, the moment one made a confession of faith and was baptized, the devil and sin would leave you alone. Because, if you could not loose salvation, there would be no reason for temptation. Obviously, the reason for temptation is to make you sin and fall from grace.
[Mat 10:22.17] and you will be hated by all for my name's sake. But he who endures to the end will be saved.
ENDURE is the key word. A good example of those who did not endure, are the 7 churches in the book of Revelations.
[Rev 3:4] Yet you have still a few names in Sardis, people who have not soiled their garments; and they shall walk with me in white, for they are worthy.
[Rev 3:5] He who conquers shall be clad thus in white garments, and I WILL NOT BLOT HIS NAME OUT OF THE BOOK OF LIFE; I will confess his name before my Father and before his angels.
[Rev 3:15] "`I know your works: you are neither cold nor hot. Would that you were cold or hot!
[Rev 3:16] So, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spew you out of my mouth.
Please realize, these people who Jesus was talking to were 1st century, immersion baptized, tongue speaking, miracle working Christians!!
Please note Rev 3:5. A persons name could not be blotted out, unless it was written there in the first place. In other words it says, this person was of the body of Christ, but because of his sinful lifestyle, the Lord (by His sovereign right as king and Creator) took away his salvation.
It becomes obvious from these warnings (and they are for everybody, because Jesus says: he who has an ear, let him hear - we all have ears) that we cannot live our lives any way we please after accepting Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior.
[Rev 3:4] Yet you have still a few names in Sardis, people who have not soiled their garments; and they shall walk with me in white, for they are WORTHY.
This verse implies that we have to live a holy, blameless life. A life that is WORTHY of the calling. So, the true believer in Christ is one who does the commandments of God. In other words: Good Works.
Finally, the real killer of the doctrine of 'CHEAP GRACE' or 'once saved always saved' are the following verses. Please note, it is written by Paul - the one most people quote in regards to this issue:
[1Tim 3:6] He must not be a recent convert, or HE MAY BE PUFFED UP WITH CONCEIT AND FALL INTO THE CONDEMNATION OF THE DEVIL;
[1Tim 3:7] moreover he must be well thought of by outsiders, or he may fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.
The condemnation for the devil is to burn in the lake of fire FOREVER. Moreover, Paul is talking about a BISHOP!! Not just any believer.
Salvation appears to be a state of being. This state of being needs to be MAINTAINED through faithful, life-long service to Christ.
These are the elements one needs to do to maintain salvation:
The most important thing - I rarely hear any Protaestant Preachers address this passage and realize what Jesus says in John 15.
[John 15:1] "I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser.
[John 15:2] Every branch (a believer) of mine that bears no fruit, he (GOD) takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he (GOD) prunes, that it may bear more fruit.
[John 15:6] If a man (including believers) does not abide in me, he is cast forth as a branch and withers; and the branches are gathered, thrown into the fire and burned (the person who does not abide in Christ is sent to the lake of fire, mentioned in Revelations).
The question that should be burning in you now is: how do I abide (remain) in Christ?
[John 15:9] As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you; abide in my love.
[John 15:10] 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.
[John 15:12] "This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.
You cannot say, if you are honest, FAITH or simply believing in Jesus will get you to Heaven. Jesus wants us to OBEY. Fix these words on your heart -[Jas 2:17.9] So faith by itself, if it has no works, is dead.
All Glory and Honor are yours Almighty One, forever and ever, Amen!