Conditional Salvation with Bob Mathieson

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Rev. Bob Mathieson has been serving as the pastor of a congregation in Newark, Delaware for the last twenty years. When he was in his twenties he first accepted the gospel of Jesus Christ and learned theology from an ultra-dispensationalist perspective. As a result, for the first thirty years of his Christian experience, Bob believed and held firmly to the doctrine called, “once saved, always saved.” However, in the last four years or so, Bob has been researching the topic of dispensationalism and salvation and has come to a better understanding.

Throughout this conversation, Bob not only shows the errors of dispensational theology, but he also lays in its place the foundation for a holistic view of Scripture. In our discussion on the possibility of someone losing his or her salvation, Bob remarked:

Many people are concerned about this, and I understand their concern initially, because they have made themselves feel good about the fact they could never lose it–it scares them. Someone says, “Are you telling me I can lose my salvation?” My response to that is, “That’s the wrong way to put it. You lose your car keys; you don’t lose your salvation. You forfeit your salvation; you walk away from your salvation. You don’t lose it. It not something where you are going to be surprised. This is a deliberate saying, ‘I’m going to do what I want to do with my life, I’m not going to continue to make Jesus Lord, and I’m going to continue on in some kind of sinful way.’ The only thing left then, is a fiery judgment that God will judge.”

Listen in to hear a masterful and balanced presentation of a subject that in the hands of less skilled exegetes has crumbled into either “easy believism” or “works salvation.” Is their a third option? Tune in to find out.

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17 Responses to Conditional Salvation with Bob Mathieson

  1. Frank D says:

    Sean, Can you share contact info for Bob. I attended his fellowship back in the early 90s and the e-mail link on Outreach of God’s Word is not working. Thanks.

    Good conversation. It is interesting to see how even the most seasoned bible students continue to grow and change their understanding.

    Do you think a lot of this arose out of a separation of beliefs from the Jews? I don’t want to accuse any 4th century people of being anti-Semitic but wasn’t there a strong push to prove Christianity was different?

  2. sean says:

    Hey FrankD,

    Bob’s email is bobmathieson@verizon.net

    I have not taken the time to investigate when the mutation occurred from perseverance to once-saved-always-saved, though I suspect the heresy first arose with Augustine of Hippo who lived in the second half of the 4th century, since he emphasized fate/predestination.

  3. Frank D says:

    Thanks, Sean. All episodes have been good stuff. Please keep it up. It is a blessing.

  4. Sam S. says:

    In response to the question asking what he would say to folks who use verses that prove once save always saved, Mathieson responds with a convenient:

    “You can pick isolated texts within certain dispensations that you can disregard in certain other texts. I think if you look at the entire Bible…”

    To the “picking out isolated verses” part: You both have been throwing out chapter and verse–isolating scriptures–throughout the interview. I guess when it suits you, the real “experts”, it’s okay.

    To the “I think if you look at the entire Bible” comment: Now it is time for the stoning of my teen aged son, I’ve simply had it with his mouth; I vow to stop playing favorites with my slaves; and today is the day I execute all my homosexual acquaintences and family members.

    Maybe you two should read Leviticus?

  5. sean says:

    Sam S.,

    I did not approve your second comment because it betrayed an exceedingly unchristian demeanor. If you would like to rewrite it, without attacking Rev. Mathieson (a man you have never met), that would be fine.

  6. Jeff says:

    Hi, I have been struggling with Salvation concerns, and being ready for the rapture as I know its a small number will be ready. I am/was a fairly mature Christian who stumbled into an old sin. It somewhat compromised my witness and shortly after, an unrelated fluke of a thing happened and my life started to completely fall apart. Lost a good job of 20 years and my home.I then tried to deal with stress and circumstances very much in the flesh and I know God was unhappy with me. I am concerned about verses like Hebrews 6:4-8, and 10:26-39. Luke 12:45-47 Num 15:30 and others. I am hoping my salvation is not lost or not being ready for the rapture. Luke 12:45 especially bothers me because this is describes my situation. Very concerned about being a branch cut off-John 15:1 Also in the OT it says a person can be cut off from his people, and I feel pretty much that way now. I am not a blessing to others anymore, but rather a burden. There is no purpose in my
    life now-
    no chance now to be productive. If you are able to comment on this by email, Thanks! Jeff

  7. I have listened to many teachings on “Truth Matters,” and have been very impressed. However, I was distressed at “Conditional Salvation.” There may be no specific Scripture that states “Once saved, always saved,” but I think it would be redundant to say so, not that God refrains from being redundant in His Word. I don’t feel that I take much of a leap in equating the salvation of Romans 10:9 with everlasting life (John 3:16). I figure that what we’ve been saved from is everlasting death. Or, rather, what we will be saved from. Is it also too much to equate salvation/everlasting life with the new birth? All these terms sound to me like really permanent situations. I would say that everlasting life that could be revoked was never everlasting to begin with. I will admit that is debatable. The term that provides the stamp of permanence is “the new birth.” The day Jesus was raised from the dead is called by God the day He has “begotten” him. All those that will confess Jesus is their Lord, believing God raised him from the dead, are “begotten” again (I Peter 1:3). By analogy, salvation through Christ is spoken of in terms of bodily conception and birth. The spirit within us is called “seed.” When an earthly father provides his seed in the conception of a child, there is absolutely nothing in heaven and earth that would make that child not be that father’s child. That is the idea God is giving us by saying that we are “born again of incorruptible seed.” Of course it would be unfair for a person to be born again, do a 180 on God and Jesus Christ, and live like the very devil, and still eventually find a place in the Kingdom. But the attitude of “it’s not fair” is the one the whiny other son had when the forgiving father was welcoming back the prodigal son. He should have been rejoicing that his brother, as good as dead, was effectually raised to life.
    You may be aware of a teaching by John Schoenheit called “Our Guarantee of Salvation.” I’ve provided the web address. May God and the Lord Jesus Christ bless you all in the good work you do.
    http://www.truthortradition.com/modules.php?name=News&file=article&sid=788

  8. Xavier says:

    Charles

    Yes, on first view the metaphor of “new birth” would connote an unchangable state. But remember this is only used as a metaphor and not to be taken literally as such.

    When it comes to this subject I think the parable of the sower [Mark 4:1-20; Matthew 13:1-23; Luke 8:1-15; cf. John 4.31-38] is eye-opening in its depiction of many seeds that are planted [take root, give birth] but only one produces fruits deemed righteous.

    Furthermore, from Pauline letters we see time and time again an often used expression starting with “if we endure/keep the faith” [2Tim 2.11-13] etc…

    • Xavier:

      I appreciate your interest in this matter. I know both of us want to get it right. First of all, I would caution you on what I see as a dangerously dismissive attitude toward figures of speech used in the Bible, as metaphor is one. Truth conveyed through a figure is no less Truth than that conveyed literally. Figures are used with as much precision as anything in Scripture. God will call special attention to something by expressing it in a figure. You cited parabolas, commonly known as parables, so they should be taken note of. However, what must be considered here is ‘to whom is he speaking?’ A new administration began on the day of Pentecost, after Jesus died, was raised, and was taken up. This was the day he sent holy spirit, that which Peter describes as “incorruptible seed.” This was not available before then, and no one knew it would be, not even Jesus Christ. It was the secret, or “mystery” (musterion) hidden in God from the beginning of time, as detailed in Ephesians. That was necessary because, had the devil known about it, he would not have crucified Christ (I Corinthians 2:8).
      May God and the Lord Jesus Christ bless you.

  9. Xavier says:

    Charles

    I thought the allusion to the “sacred secret [musterion] hidden before all ages” was the person of the Messiah. Holy spirit as such was always known to have been available and empowered people like Moses, Solomon, etc.

    Also, reference to “the incorruptible seed” here surely is talking about the message of the Gospel of the Kingdom to come and not some ethereal, spiritual, energizing force only.

    But in relation to “once saved” how do you interpret what Messiah says at Mat 24.24:

    For false messiahs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect.

  10. Terry says:

    I had concerns in the beginning of this interview, but am blessed that more clarification is made towards the end. Our salvation is not contingent upon sin….for we have a mediator for to ask and receive forgiveness. It’s important to note that Romans 10:9-10 is NOT a one-time-shot for eternal life. Confession and believing that Jesus Christ is our Lord and that God raised him from the dead is an ongoing faith. The point on freedom of will in this interview is a great point! All believers have the choice to “endure in the faith” or denounce their faith, choosing the things of this world as their God. So, this topic can be further substantiated by using the logic of “if”/”then” statements which are numerous throughout the Word. We are continually exhorted by Jesus Christ and by the apostles to endure, to hold fast onto the faith, that we are in a race….and for those who endure to the end, we stand before the “bema”…the judgment seat where prizes and rewards are given (crowns). Again, Romans 10:9-10 is not a one time deal. It’s a continual thing. Thanks for a great interview!

    • Christopher Murphy says:

      Hey there Xavier, Sorry I joined the conversation this late but I’m a new comer to this site and I just couldn’t get by what people are saying in response to the interview. I too have a very,very big problem with what you are saying about the “new birth” being a figure of speech called metaphor. It really isn’t, rather it’s a literal, spiritual thing, that is expressed by an allegory.Which is another figure by comparison that uses both “metaphor ” and “Hypocatastasis”. This “Hypocatastasis” is another figure that draws a comparison by “implication”. Have you worked with Bullingers, “Figures of Speech Used in the Bible”? He explains it all in that book. In my edition it’s on page 744. The truth implied by Christ when he said that”Except a man be born again from above”,(Is the actuall Aramaic text) was that a person must be born spiritually within and from God,in order to understand and perceive the things of the kingdom of God. There he uses, I believe, a hidden metaphor to stimulate Nicodemus’ heart and cause him to “…inquire in His,(God’s), temple”,(Ps.27:4)as he did in exhorting the multitudes in “The Sermon on The Mount”. Matt. 6:33 He said “But seek ye first the kingdom of God and His rightousness,and all these things shall be added unto you”. Nicodemus’s response to Jesus shows that he didn’t actually catch on to the “hidden metaphor ” of Christ when he said “How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother’s whomb, and be born? John 3:1-16. Also, I’m not sure your understanding of what the “Sacred Mystery” is when God, through Paul stated it so clearly in Col.1:27 “…which is, “Christ in you” the hope of glory”. Paul is not just expressing the fact that the true messiah is Jesus Christ but he is expressing very boldly and greatly, the greatness of how perfect and magnificent a work God did when He created that perfect seed within the believer. He also mentions it in 1 Cor.2:1-16 and says that “…had they known it, they would not have crucified the lord of glory”. The devil would rather have had one living Jesus Christ walking around in the world then many Sons and Daughters with Christ in them expressing the greatness of our God and Father Jehovah Himself and meeting the needs of God’s people and loving the world to Himself. For it is “God in Christ in you the hope of glory”. Boy I love that don’t you? As far as spirit allways being available it was only “upon” some men and women of God because only “they” were able to believe enough to receive and utilize it enough for God’s people. The people of God”the children of Israel” were actually too afraid of God and could not believe enough in His great Love for them but men and women of God like the prophets in the scriptures and who wrote the scriptures, were able to reveal to an extent the love of God and even they had a hard time with it. The spirit of God was only given in measure under the old testament because they could only handle so much of the power of God upon them,but Jesus was the only one who had it in the fulness Jn 3:34, and it was not available until the day of pentecost Jn 7:39(Christ lived under the old testament). Actually Christ did know that he was going to be in his disciples for he said in Jn 17:22 “…that they may be one,even as we are one. V.23 “I in them and thou,(God),in me.” A literal translation of verse 22,23 is “And the glory that You have given me I gave to them that they may realize one by one in such a manner, that we are one(in purpose). V23 “I in them and you in me…”(Aramaic translation).Hence: “God in Christ in you,(Them),the hope of glory”. But no one,not even Christ himself,(naturally because he was and is the Christ), ever “experienced” the revelation of “Christ in you the hope of glory” until the day of pentecost. Paul was the one who was given the privledge of revealing the great “musterion” as is given in Col.1:27, because it needed to be explained to the believers for correction in practical error.Also Xaviour,as far as an “ethereal spiritual force” is concerned, you might not be understanding the actual meaning of what holy spirit is. I’m not trying to offend you here, but the gift of holy spirit is “power from on high”,= Grk. “Dunamis” or “inherent potential power” born within, which is the image of His son and enables God to form that “…Image of His son…”= the person of messiah within the lives and persons of the sons and daughters of God. We don’t become Christ but we do become the “spritual image” of Christ and thus the image of God. The gift is “holy spirit” and is what only God can give. There is a serious problem with emphasizing the “Person of The Messiah” as you, and many “Trinitarian” people,(I’m not saying that you are a Trinitarian),are saying that the gift of holy spirit is. The gift of holy spirit is not actually a person,but it is his power from on high,which enhances all our abilities of body,soul and spirit and gives all of us the ability to lead holy and fruitful lives for God Our Heavenly Father because the minute you say that the gift is “The Person of the Messiah” then what does that make the women of God,inwardly? Certainly not “men” or the “messiah” right?I think you really have to be careful about that kind of emphasis. I truly believe that a tremendous amount of damage has been done to alot of females who are very,very precious to God Almighty,El Shaddai Himself. All that stuff eminates from “trinitarianism” which is a dangerous heresy from the adversary.As far as the “incorruptible seed” being the “kingdom of God” and your reference to the parables, Christ was telling his deciples these things in order for them to “remain” or “continue” in “my Word”, (Jn8:31) and to take heed or to be careful “HOW” you here. The adversary is very evil and wants to scare people away from God by instilling them with Doubt,worry,and fear. That is what causes them to get”burned” and unable to “receive=Grk.=”Dechomai”=to receive inwardly” all that God wants them to have. Especially eternal life. Well, I guess I’ve said enough. Didn’t mean to come off sounding harshly puffed up, but I do care tremendously about the household of God and I just don’t want them to get “Burned”.

      God Bless you,
      Chris murphy

  11. Chris Murphy says:

    Hi there folks. I just have a couple of things to say about the doctrine of conditional salvation from any ones view point. I definetly do not believe that anyone who is truly born again of incorruptible seed
    can loose there salvation. This is not because of the fact that if someone told me I could do so, it would scare me. On the contrary I am so absolutely, positively sure that I can not loose it at all because I have the perfect eternal love of God in me that casts out, or replaces all fear of ever loosing it as 1 John 16-18 says. Not only that, but if Jesus Christ truly paid for all of my sins,and by that I mean past,present and sins that I “will” commit in the future,then how could I ever loose it,if you tell me that I could loose it then your telling me that Christ did not pay for “all” my sins and that is taking away from the work of the cross and his atoning sacrifice. I’m sorry to say this, but I honestly believe that it’s a scare tactic of the adversary to keep people from turning away from a religous or bondage related system of worship. I know that sounds pretty bold but Jesus himself said in JN. 11:26,”Everyone who lives and believes “into” me will never die “ever”. We all know that christians have been falling asleep in Christ for centuries but he wasn’t talking about natural death he was talking about spiritual death. 1 Peter 1:23 Says,”Having been born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible(Eternal seed) by the word of God which lives and abides for ever. None of us can loose it because that spirit in us is the spirit of Jesus Christ (Gal.4:6;3:16)and that spirit can not die at all. If you were to tell me that I could loose my salvation then what your telling me is that I can commit the unpardonable sin which I know is not possible for any believer.By the way I’m not at all concerned about commiting the unpardonable sin because it can’t happen to a true believer in Jesus Christ. However I do believe that you can loose out at the Bema seat on your rewards at the judgement seat of Christ. “2Jn:8″ this is part of the attitude we should have and not an attitude of fear. Don’t mean to sound arrogant or puffed up or even accusative, but you really, really can not loose it folks. Phil.3:7-16.
    God Bless, Your The Best, Beloved,
    Chris

    • Terry says:

      Hi Chris… I’ve posted more under “The Grace Trap” regarding this once-saved-always-saved concept, which is contrary to all logic of the Word when it comes to “Faith”. We cannot lose our “state”, our eternal life, because of our works. We can lose it if we denounce our faith in Jesus Christ. Confessing and believing that Jesus Christ is our Lord is a lifetime commitment on our part. This is what it means to standfast to the end….to endure to the end, as Christ tells us, as Paul tells us, as Peter tells us. There are many, many “if”-”then” logical statements contained in the Word. Firstly, how can you believe that God and His Son, Christ Jesus would want someone who denied Lordship, denied God as their God, after they had at one point in their life once believed, then denied their existence, or denounced Jesus Christ as their Lord? Do you really think that God would accept them into the Kingdom if they confessed and believed the opposite of what they once confessed and believed? Why do you think that the Word tells us that our faith is on trial. Why do you think it says what it says in II Peter 2:19-21? When we follow the precepts of Romans 10:9-10, it does not give us a timeline as to when we receive that incorruptible seed. It doesn’t say that in a nano-second, once we confess and believe that Jesus Christ is our Lord and God raised him from the dead, that instantaneously we are zapped into eternal life, regardless if we, the very next day, the following week, or month or year, look back on that day and confess and believe that Jesus Christ is NOT our Lord and that God never raised him from the dead. Why else would Jesus Christ, Paul and other apostles continually tell us to hold fast onto the faith, to endure to the end? Also, we know also that each epistle is written to the saints, the elect, they chosen ones, those who are of the Body of Christ, the Church of God. In I John 5:13 it states, “These things have I written unto you THAT BELIEVE on the name of the Son of God: That you may know that you have eternal life.” – The condition is that we believe on the name of Jesus Christ as God’s only begotten son, who is our risen Lord. If we choose not to believe, then we what happens then? We merely miss out on some rewards? No, as this is talking about ones believing on the name of the Son of God. It’s not talking about the sins we commit, for as believers, we ask for forgiveness through Jesus Christ, and our sins are forgiven. I John 5:4-5 – “For whatsoever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that overcomes the world, our faith. I John 2:24 – “….If that which you have heard from the beginning shall remain in you, you also shall continue (per earlier texts, the word “continue” should be the word “abide”) in the Son and in the Father. Can this say it any clearer? James 1:12 – “Blessed is the one that endures temptation (“stands approved” is the original text). For when that one is tried, that one shall receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to them that love him.” Can this be written any planer? II Timothy 4:6-8 – “For I am now ready to be offered (executed), and the time of my departure (death) is at hand (is close). I have fought a good fight. I have finished my course. I have kept the faith. Paul writes here that his death is imminent. And that he had “kept the faith”. How?—by fighting the good fight…through holding onto the faith, concurring persecutions, mental pressures etc, while holding onto the faith. If “once-saved-always-saved”, then what fight is there? I Timothy 6:14 – This verse, in the context of verse 12 tells us to continue the “good fight of faith and thereby hold on eternal life until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ, which is when Christ returns to gather all believers (both dead and alive), since the Day of Pentecost when the new birth first became available. I Timothy 4:16 – This verse exhorts us to take heed to the doctrine; to continue in this doctrine; because to continue in the doctrine, you SHALL both save yourself and those that hear you and also continue in the doctrine. Ask yourself conversely, ‘What happens if I don’t continue in the doctrine? This verse tells us “IF” we continue in the doctrine, we will be saved. So, “IF” we do not continue in the doctrine, THEN we will NOT be saved. John 3:15 — “whosoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life”. So, the logical expression is, “what happens if I decide no longer to believe in Him?” The logical answer is that I no longer have eternal life. There are countless other verses that substantiate the same. I agree with you that our “state” of eternal life is not contingent upon our works and/or sins we commit. Each time we sin, God does not remove our eternal life, only to give it back each time we ask for forgiveness. This does not affect our “state”. What affects our “state” is when one confesses and believes no longer that Jesus Christ is their Lord and that God raised him from the dead. Is this possible?–one might say for a believer?— Yes. You don’t need to go far to come across people who at one time believed, but have decided to believe in Native American god(s), buddha, allah, or other false gods….or merely chose to worship the things in this world….after being taught who the only True God is and who Jesus Christ is. We are not being exhorted to standfast and hold onto the faith just so that we can obtain some rewards once we get to heaven. We are exhorted because our faith is on trial. The devil knows this and…just as he works on blinding the eyes of those who believe not….he also works on blinding the eyes of those who believe so that they fall into that category of believing not and thereby steal away the opportunity for salvation. That pneuma hagion that God gave us when we confessed that Jesus Christ is our Lord, believing God raised him from the dead gave us entrance into the qualifying round….gave us entrance into the varsity club to run the race, reach the goal line and be rewarded the Crown of Life among other rewards we will be given in accordance of how we stood on the faith—handed out at the “bema”.

  12. Chris Murphy says:

    Hi Terry, I guess it’s my turn. You sure said a mouthful.However my friend,I do believe your in error when it comes to some of the things that you said. But first let me just say that I in no way pretend to be a “know it all biblical Schollar and total authoritarian” on each and everything the Word Of God speaks on. 1cor.13:9 of course says it all. However I am absolutely certain and can absolutely say that I do know the voice of My Heavenly Father God Almighty El Shadai Himself. And I know He has taught me well on the things that I “do” know about. For instance,you’ve seemed to have left out the fact or maybe you’ve over looked my statement above about the atonement of Jesus and all it entails. Or maybe I didn’t make it clear enough. In which case let me ask you,do you really, honestly believe and understand all that the atonement of Jesus Christ covered. And do you really, honestly believe that he paid all of the price of every sin not only that you have commited but that you ever will commit? If you do, then you are among the rest of us who know full well the awesome love of God and his eternal son Jesus Christ. Because, “It is Finished” Jn 19:30. But my friend if you really are not sure about this important subject then you should spend a little more in depth study on it and you will undoubtedly see and understand it. Refer to my statement in my last reply. With that in mind, your right I do not believe that any one who merely “confessed” Jesus as there lord, but really did’nt mean it would actually have eternal life “within” them 1 Jn 5:10-14. 1 Jn 4:14-5:5. The word “Faith” in 1 Jn 5:4 is not refering to, nor based on, a continuous professing of Jesus Christ in order to be saved, but is refering to the “Family Faith” that each and every believer receives with the new birth(Rom.12:3,1Cor.3:10,11)and is the foundation of the whole Church of God “…which is the church of the living God the pillar and ground of the truth”. That being the Faith of Jesus Christ the son of God and also the Faith of God Himself.Yes, God Himself also believes eternally, which is also what God has also wanted for mankind since the foundations of the world(Mk.11:22).That in fact is the only way we can come to believe and actually understand the Love of God because Jesus Christ eternally believed God and therefore became the “Author and Finisher of our Faith”.That, is “Our very own Faith” which distinguishes us from anyone, and anything, and for that matter any religion in this world.And any other Family in this world. If Jesus Christ believed eternally and still believes eternally than how can any true believer who has that faith within them ever renounce it. That I do not believe can ever happen.However, even “if” that were to happen God “still” cannot,yes cannot, deny His very own sonship which he has created because that would be violating his very own law of believing which is the greatest principle in all of life based on the energizing law of The Love of God.He is a Rightous and Just God and to deny the eternal spirit that has been created in the believer is an impossibilty for God because it is His divine nature in every true son and daughter of God. You quoted 2 Peter 2:19-21 out of context.You should have started with verse 9 and then interpreted in that light and understanding. The Word “Knowledge” in Verse 20 of 2 Peter 20 is refering to those who had a mere “head knowledge” and not a true heart knowledge of the lord.As far as there being a timeline as to when that incorruptible seed is born within there certainly is. Why do you think it says exactly that when you Confess with your mouth Jesus as lord believing God raised him from the dead you shall be saved. When? in the future? well yes and that future salvation will be realized at the very moment you “confess Jesus as lord… etc.” verse 10 ” For with the mouth confession is made unto, What? Salvation right? and with the heart one believes unto rightousness. So it sure does sound to me like your saying that one minute you may be saved and in another minute you may be not so you better confess Jesus as lord again.No,No this just isn’t true. It is an “incorruptible” an “incorruptible” eternal seed that very simply and absolutely can not die. You can never ever die spiritually again. It is an eternal gift Romans 11:29. And yes you do get “Zapped” as you put it,into eternal life, only I’ll put it another way Phil.1:13 says,”Who has delivered us from the power of darkness and “translated” us into the kingdom by His dear son.We get “translated” into the kingdom by His dear son at that very moment of confession.Let me touch on another issue that you stated. 1Jn5:13 is not an evangelistic statement so as to get the unsaved, saved, or for that matter saved again, but it is a statement of “ASSURANCE” as it says in the beginning “These things have I written unto you that you may “know” that they “do” have eternal life. The condition is true that a person must believe on the son of God to get saved but John is not stating that for that reason here.If a person chooses not to believe to receive eternal life that really is there problem and are quite honestly stupid and foolish.Enough said about that. As far as enduring to the end that you said Paul and the other apostles state,please give me Chapter and verse and we’ll work with it from there.To address another point that you made about abiding in Christ. Christ in you is one thing and is for ever but “you in Christ” (That is you being renewed in the Spirit of your mind which is renewed mind believing) or “That Christ may dwell in your hearts by Faith, “believing” renewed mind believing.For what enters into the mind enters into the heart and that is how you get and keep Christ in the heart by renewing the mind(the heart falls into the same category as the seat of the emotions,will and mind which make up the soul life of everyone,saved or unsaved. Just a quick note on faith and believing. There is a difference. “Faith” is what you get when you get saved (The noun form of the word when understood properly)and is eternal but believing is the action of your faith in operation and is the verb form of the word when understood properly in the context of the verse.I touched on that above in previous statements.Boy, you really have said alot in this blog reply but I’ll continue on and answer still another point that you spoke about,that being the matter of “trials”.God is not the one who “tries” our believing no sir that really isn’t it at all, it is your adversary the devil who does that.He does it to try and wear us down so that we will loose our honor and priveledges and good reputation as sons and daughters of God Almighty and possibly even ruin our fruit and quality of life that we have and bear in Christ.He also does it to ruin our witness for God to mankind.I haven’t really worked James 1:12 but if you say it should be understood as “standing approved” then I’ll agree with that and say that we stand approved of God by “rightly dividing The Word of truth” as much as possible and that is to be the heart of our endeavor allways. For we “Stand by Believing” as Romans 11:20 says. Actually with once-saved-allways-saved there is a tough spiritual competition against the devil and his co-horts who are out to thwart all the purposes of God who is constantly at work to both will and do His good pleasure in and through us because we are His “masterpieces” created in Christ Jesus unto good works which God has before ordained that we should walk in them Eph.2:10. As far as 1 Tim. 6:12 is concerned 2 John 8 is my answer. Soo, “Look to yourselves” that you receive a full reward not only in this life but in eternity as well.Lets look at 1 Tim.4:16. The Greek Word for save is “soseis” and means to preserve, Guard and protect.We are to do just that for our soul lives and all that it entails as witnesses and ambassadors for God and Christ Jesus.As I said before your adversary the devil,”walks about seeking whom he may devour, whom resist steadfast in the present believing. But The God of All Grace…etc.” As far as “What happens if I don’t continue in the present believing or doctrine “, well I become a poor, stupid,deceived, and dumb pauper without anything to stand on but the Faith of Christ Jesus in the day that will reveal every “mans work” by fire yet he himself shall be saved but with absolutely no eternal rewards 1Cor.3:9-15)You see God makes this walk of ours worthwhile when you really choose to stand and walk with The Most High El Elyon and that keeps us coming to the Father and wanting to keep coming to the Father but the adversary trys to make it brutal for us.But once you know “that you got what you got” you never want to turn away at all ever. You said that each time we sin, God does not take away our eternal life and your absolutely right. So then what happens if suddenly for some stupid,foolish reason I turn away from God and sin in that way, have I now commited the unpardonable sin and therefore “Damned Forever”. No of course not. I addressed this allready but first of all God is so merciful and allways good and loving that He can never reject the very nature of that sonship holy spirit that is in us forever as I said above in a previous statement. But God know’s every heart and detail of His children and actually understands when His Children do turn away.Tell me something, would you ever turn away one of your very own children because they’ve done wrong or maybe even renounced you yourself? I hope not, but even so even if you did, don’t you think God is alot more merciful than you or I or any other human being? You can bet your life on it my man.Of course He does not want His children to turn away, and He continues to constantly love them, but chances are, that child of God might have been hurt or had some bad experiences induced by the adversary and more than likely could not stand due to lack of knowledge or understanding and caused them to have “hewed out cisterns,broken cistrens that can hold no water” of God and therefore suffered the loss of their ability to Hold the Water of the Word of God which is the very life of the believer that makes them strong and therefore lively and vivacious and full of holy energy to stand for God. Hosea 4:6 says,” My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge” and therefore should be taught the rightly divided Word of God so they can learn. Jn.10:10 ” The thief comes not but for to steal and to kill and destroy, but I (Jesus Christ our lord) am come that they might have “life”=energy and vitality and all it’s capacities, and categories and that they might have it more abundantly.And that is still true today Hebrew 13:8. I’m not sure but I think I addressed almost everything that we’ve been discussing so far in which case, Until next time.
    God bless you,
    Chris Murphy

    • Terry says:

      Thanks Chris for your reply…. Still not convinced, Chris, on the concept of once-saved-always-saved. However, as I’m sure you’ll agree, we will all find out for sure what will play out in the end. Not for us to debate the Word, argue the Word, defend the Word. I’m sure we both have at times reached this conclusion when sharing the Word with others who are have “other” belief systems than our own. I agree with you on the differences between believing from the mind verses believing from the heart. I’ve been a believer since 1973. During that span of time till now my “standing” in the faith has waivered. My “state” never left, as I never denied/denounced my faith that Jesus Christ is my Lord and that the only True God, Creator of the heavens and the earth, Father of our Lord Jesus Christ raised him from the dead. Throughout this time, up to about a year ago, I too accepted the concept of once-saved-always-saved, until I came across people who had known and researched the Word in depth for years, stood on that Word, and then decided, “it was just another trip I went through and I no longer believe that Jesus Christ is my Lord; no longer believe in a Christian God. I wept over this, Chris!! I could not understand how could one be so involved in the Word; how could they profess and exhibit their love for God and His son so much, only to depart from that, deny their faith, and end up worshipping the things of this world, or worship some shaman in an American Indian tribe?!! I prayed for understanding, and within a few days of that prayer, I was reading in Philippians chapter 3…and reached the verses 15 through 19…Then my eyes were opened. It was then revealed unto me that numerous logical statements in the Word using “if”/”then” conditions. So I put these verses to the test, so-to-speak. When a particular verse uses the “if” logical statement, I asked myself, “if” I do the opposite, then what? For example, Matthew 10:33 (also Luke 12:8-9)– WHOSOEVER (whosoever means just that. It doesn’t mean a few or some)…. But, whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven. Gee? What do you think happens if Christ denies us before God as a result of we deny Christ before men? — This follows my proof that if one who once believed, regardless of the time of their existence, decides to deny Jesus Christ, they also will be denied before God. Matthew 10:22 (also Mark 13:13)– He that endures to the end shall be saved. So ask yourself, “What happens if I didn’t endure to the end?” One cannot ignore these and many other verses for the sake of maintaining one’s assertion of their own belief system that is contrary to the Word. The trap also is to ignore to whom each book is written to. I can share a MS Word file with you on this subject that I compiled as a result of my concerns about once-saved-always-saved, which led me to the realization of “if”/”then” statements that exist throughout the entire Word of God. When you put it all together…. and test the “if” statements by asking yourself, “what happens IF I do the opposite, you’ll understand what I’m saying. my email is tsordal@yahoo.com. Chris….I’m passionate about the Word and the accuracy of it. It has to fit like a hand in a glove. We cannot ignore verses for the sake of our own ideology. It is our obligation (both of us) to strive toward the accuracy of God’s Word and forsake our own belief system for that accuracy. I agree with you and the mercy, forgiveness, kindness of God. I agree also that we are dealing with translations of translations of translations…so we must research that fits with the rest of the Word. This is all we have. I also believe that God protected His written Word throughout all of these translations to enable us to know the basics. However it’s up to us to research the difficult verses and discover truths that correct the errors that were passed down by the translators who interjected their own belief systems at times when translating….particularly the King James Version. You seem to have quite a bit of knowledge of the Word…and I’d like to fellowship with you more on various subjects. God Bless you richly, my brother in Christ!

      Terry

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