The Grace Trap with Vince Finnegan

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Rev. Vince Finnegan is not only the founding minister of Living Hope Community Church, but he is also my father. We had an engaging Bible conversation on the subject of salvation. Out of all the programs on this show, I think this one is the most densely packed with Scripture. Text after text was discussed in order to debunk the myth of unconditional salvation and instead share the biblical idea of salvation by grace through faith that expresses itself in obedience. Furthermore, the theme of perseverance featured in our dialog. Listen in as we discuss “The Grace Trap” in this ongoing series on salvation.

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47 Responses to The Grace Trap with Vince Finnegan

  1. Bud Charbonneau says:

    Besides the great spiritural content of this program, I love the wonderful interaction between Sean & his father. These two men have an amazing ability to relate the Scriptures to anyone of any age, no matter what their level of belief is!! This particular program helped me to understand that Salvation is a state of Grace that we must never stop striving for. Of course there was much more contained in this short program that helped me in ways I cannot describe now for lack of time & space. But never stop, both of you!

  2. bentonbelcher says:

    Hey Sean, God Bless, and thanks for the teaching today. I thought there were a lot good points you and your father made.

    KJV Matthew 7:23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.

    This is clearly a pretty intense section in Matthew for those practicing inquity/lawlessness.

    I have a couple questions, but want to preface it (for others who might read this) with the prophecy in daniel and thessalonians about the “apostasy” or “forsaken of the holy covenant” before the man of sin is revealed.

    KJV 2 Thessalonians 2:3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;

    KJV Daniel 11:30 For the ships of Chittim shall come against him: therefore he shall be grieved, and return, and have indignation against the holy covenant: so shall he do; he shall even return, and have intelligence with them that forsake the holy covenant.

    *Also interesting is that they accuse Paul of teaching the Jews among the Gentiles to “forsake Moses” (apostasia)

    KJV Acts 21:21 And they are informed of thee, that thou teachest all the Jews which are among the Gentiles to forsake Moses, saying that they ought not to circumcise their children, neither to walk after the customs.

    Anyways, to my questions about “once saved, always saved”

    Many times it says in a future tense, “thou shalt be saved”, how do we know from what?

    Is there a difference between being “saved” and “saved from wrath”

    KJV Romans 5:9 Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.

    KJV 1 Thessalonians 1:10 And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come.

    2) What does the “earnest” mean in Ephesians? Many folks I talk to have taught this to mean that you’re sealed with the holy spirit as your ticket into the kingdom.

    KJV Ephesians 1:14 Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.

    Is this verse below suggesting you can have it (be sealed) and lose it?

    KJV Matthew 7:22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?

    3) The verses in ezekiel read as if there were some new rules or changes from Moses’ (but I do not understand the words of Moses enough to confidently conclude this)

    All Ezekiel 18

    21 But if the wicked will turn from all his sins that he hath committed, and keep all my statutes, and do that which is lawful and right, he shall surely live, he shall not die.

    24 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. 25 Yet ye say, The way of the Lord is not equal. Hear now, O house of Israel; Is not my way equal? are not your ways unequal?

    Anyways, I am thankful for this network and would love your insight on the above, to recap:

    1) how do we explain verses that have different tenses of “the timing of when you are saved versus being saved already” and also “saved from what (wrath vs death?)”

    2) a better understanding on the “spirit” and how you can manifest it or use it or have it and then not. There are obviously some difficult verses which read as if your “signed, sealed, and delivered”

    3)more insight on the righteousness of the righteousness and the question your friend asked. I ask about the line for both my self (I’d lie if I said I didnt), but also as I share the word with others so that I do not lead them astray.

    Thanks!
    Ben

  3. Annette says:

    O foolish Finneganians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth,
    Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?

    Our accomplishments, the deeds done in Him while we are here on this earth, will result in heaven’s rewards for us. And we are to be conscientious to receive a full reward. (2 John 1:8 ) But Heaven is NOT the reward. It is the gift of God through Jesus Christ and his accomplishments. But, concerning rewards, if anyone’s work fails to be acceptable to Him, he or she will not lose the gift of God which is eternal life. They will lose their reward.

    1 Corinthians 3:14 If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward.
    15 If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: BUT HE HIMSELF SHALL BE SAVED; yet so as by fire.

    But, just like you were taught and held to grace because of what your previous leader taught you, in like manner, you will also hold to what ever your current leader tells you is truth. One man giveth and another man taketh away. This X-ianity is a lost cause.

    Come Lord Jesus. Come Today!

    Oh yeah, that’s right. You let the thief steal that from you too.

  4. sean says:

    Dear Annette,

    Are you aware that the context of 1 Corinthians 3 is talking about the role of the missionary/preacher who builds churches and communities of faith? It is not talking about salvation.

    Please respond to the clear texts we read in the show if you would like to challenge our position. Show us how these verses should be interpreted.

    Also, I’d be curious about your thoughts on a sermon I recently preached called Eternal Security?click here to download it.

    Furthermore, you may be interested to listen to Steve Gregg’s debate with a Baptist over this very issue. The advantage of listening to the debate is that you can clearly hear both sides represented. Click here to download it.

  5. Annette says:

    Thank you for your kind response Sean. But Bro, this is what always happens in my experience. Dueling Bible verses or dueling understandings will never result in the settling of the matter.

    For example, to me: “…he himself shall be saved…” means just that. Work burned, not the worker ;) But to you, it means something else.

    Also, I am very familiar with the positions the group holds to. Also, I was in personal email communication with your Dad a few years back and he emailed me his position on the end time events with a document he wrote about the Resurrections (Can’t remember the title exactly) which also presented his view on conditional salvation. So my comment to this audio, (which I did listen to, also being familiar with this particular interpretation of scripture), was not a hasty one.

    May we all find mercy at the bema seat of Christ,

    Your Sis (forever),
    Annette

    • Xavier says:

      what if its not a bema we find but a krino? :P

    • sean says:

      Dear Annette,

      You say that discussing Bible verses and understandings is to no avail. What then should we do to help each other come to the truth on this matter? Is this not a critical doctrine? If one can lose his or her salvation but is convinced of eternal security it is certainly possible to live a disobedient lifestyle and in the end be condemned rather than given entrance into the kingdom.

      • Xavier says:

        Those who are victorious will, like them, be dressed in white. I will never blot out their names from the book of life, but will acknowledge their names before my Father and his angels. Rev 3.5 [TNIV]

  6. Annette says:

    As far as seeing this as a serious matter, (conditional or unconditional salvation) one would have to be in darkness NOT to. You site the scenario of one who, believing their salvation is secure, would take grace so lightly so as to continue in sin as a result. Do you really think that convincing a person who despises Christ’s sacrifice in this way that their salvation is conditional, that this will result in bringing forth godly fruit in their life? I don’t think so. But Heaven’s rewards will justly expose who did what for whom in that day. I am thoroughly convinced of that.

    And just a note on the verses in presented in 1 Corinthians 3 in my first post. You said: “Are you aware that the context of 1 Corinthians 3 is talking about the role of the missionary/preacher who builds churches and communities of faith?”

    But I ask you: at what location is the determination being made (in this verse) of whether their work stands or not? On earth, in the here and now, or before the Lord in judgment? And if before the Lord in judgment, then there is no further chance for this person to loose their salvation because their work is finished and is now being judged…a work that the Lord judges as worthy for the fire! And yet it says he himself shall be saved.

    1 Corinthians 3

    14 If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, HE SHALL RECEIVE A REWARD.
    15 If any man’s work shall be burned, HE SHALL SUFFER LOSS: BUT HE HIMSELF SHALL BE SAVED; yet so as by fire.

    Loss of what? Loss of reward. So you can loose your reward but still be saved.

    But I’m sure you have another view of this ;)

    Let me ask a rhetorical question: do I really stand a chance of convincing you to return to a teaching you once held to but now so despise solely by using scriptures? The same scriptures that someone has persuaded you to view otherwise? I trow not.

    I do NOT believe there will be a settling on this or any other doctrinal matter by debating scripture verses back and forth. I DO personally think that it will take an “Elijah on the mount” ministry to settle this matter once and for all. But if that will not be the case, never the less, I am under instruction to not let my heart be troubled.

    Come Lord Jesus, Come Today!
    Annette

    • Nevertheless I think this passage is referring to Christians and not former or non-Christians:

      1 Cor. 3:14–15 reward . . . loss . . . saved . . . as through fire. See also v. 8 and 4:4–5. Although those who have believed in Jesus have already been justified by faith (Rom. 5:1) and will not face condemnation on the final day (John 5:24; Rom. 8:1, 33), God will still judge their works (Rom. 14:10–12; 2 Cor. 5:10) and reward them accordingly (Matt. 6:1–6, 16, 18; 10:41–42). Paul’s point applies not just to church leaders but to anyone who contributes in any way to building up the church (1 Cor. 12:7, 12–31; 14:12). [ESV]

    • Terry says:

      Annette…. Unfortunately I discovered this site after-the-fact…. after the radio station was terminated, and the last post, prior to my own was in June 2010. So, I’m posting now, just in case there are others who discover this site and read through the various threads. I too was involved with TWI back in the 70s, which I refer to as “the golden years”, when corruption was not as visible. I did back then, as I do now, believe that VPW taught about 75% accuracy. I was in the minority in that most who were involved at that time believed that VPW was “the man of God” and that TWI taught 100% accuracy. I can only say that if VPW was “the man of God”, at any time, his teachings would have been 100% accurate, which I knew, even while involved with TWI, was not. One subject that was taught, “once-saved-always-saved”, I believed at that time to be accurate. However, it was recently, without any outside influence, revealed to me that this was not an accurate teaching. I believe what others have posted here are stating that we have eternal life/salvation, as long as we endure in the faith to the end….faith in Jesus Christ as our Lord and believe God raised him from the dead (Romans 10:9-10). This verse is NOT a one time shot, where one, within a few seconds, confessed and believed what it states in verses 9-10. It is a continual faith, to the end. As long as we continually, within our hearts always believe that Jesus Christ is our Lord, always believe that God raised His Son from the dead, we will receive that “crown of life and glory. If we denounce our faith, claiming that we no longer accept Jesus Christ as our lord, no longer believe that God raised him from the dead, we will not be saved. The Word is jam-packed with “if”/”then” logical statements. It repetitively tells us to endure in the faith, to standfast in the faith, be steadfast, to hold fast, that we are essentially in a race to the finish line. In the end, it does say that believers will stand before the “bema” judgement seat, where rewards are given. But, who does this apply to? VPW constantly stated, when reading the Word, always get “to whom it is written” correct. So, when we look at the epistles, most are written to God’s True Church…the Church of the Body of Christ. It’s not written to the unbeliever, and it’s not written to those who have denounced their faith. If you look at the entire history of the events in the Word, from time to time, people had denounced their faith in the only True God. Perhaps the very first event was when lucifer and a third of the host of heaven turned against God, followed by Adam and Eve, followed by all by those that did not make it into the Ark, followed by the Children of Israel, and so on. Jesus Christ experienced this during his earthly ministry. The apostles experienced it during their 1st century church ministry, and we are witness to the rampant unbelief in the world today. So, just because one qualifies (Romans 10:9-10) for the qualification round, does not mean that they have once and for all, received salvation and eternal life. It means that they have qualified to enter into the race for eternal life, and receive the rewards promised to us IF we endure to the end. Meanwhile, our faith in on trial, If you still doubt and desire to explore this concept more, I’d be glad to share chapter and verse. Just as VPW and many others have accurately proven that Jesus Christ is NOT God….but that he is the Son of God by referencing many, many scripturally researched verses, I can share with you the many, many verse in both the gospels and the epistles that eternal life is conditional, based on our enduring in our faith in Jesus Christ as our Lord and that God raised him from the dead.

      • Annette says:

        Classic technique I see used by former, yet “more enlightened” members of that or any other sect. They reduce the gospel of the grace of God (or any other matter) to a man’s teaching which makes it easy to forsake.

        I do not debate any matters of truth, especially with those who have turned aside from it and yet, think of themselves as my instructor. Besides, debate, although a modern acceptable form of discussion, accomplishes nothing when each person believes their belief is Bible supported. What we believed and why we believed it (as well as other things) will be held up to the light of the judgment seat of Christ.

      • Terry says:

        Annette— The only technique that I use is what the Word says. If what one teaches, lines up with what the Word says, with research to back it up, then I listen and I know God will speak to my heart when it comes to inaccuracy…. like that of speaking in tongues, the original sin, once-saved-always-saved, just to name a few of the inaccuracies propounded by VPW, or as you call it, “sect”. Annette. For your information, there are NO ministries, organizations, sects, cults, orthodox churches, groups or otherwise in the world today that teaches 100% accuracy. If we believe and ask God to speak to our hearts to reveal unto us Truth and error, He Will do so. So, until Christ comes back and gathers us up to meet him in the clouds, our avenue for learning and growing in the Word is to be open to listening to those who teach the Word, and separate out the errors from the Truth. Like I offered in my earlier reply to you, I am willing to share all verses that contradict the once-saved-always-saved notion. Christ stated it, Peter stated it, Paul stated, all in very black and white terms…and sin is not a condition for a believer to lose their “state” in Christ Jesus. Denouncing your faith in Jesus Christ, denouncing Romans 10:9-10, after one had once confessed and believed that Jesus Christ is their Lord and that God raised him from the dead IS— this is scripturally backed up. Trust what your heart is telling you. Trust the LOGIC of the Word. There is no debate, no defense when it comes to the Word. So if you want chapter and verse, then find me on Facebook under Terry Sordal.

      • Annette says:

        Terry.

        You speak to me as if you know all about me and why I believe what I believe. But that’s nothing new in the flesh ministry. But I did learn something very valuable from your posting here. Previously, I had thought concerning the divisions in the body of Christ, that the main offenders were sects, denominations, cults etc. because of the many “doctrines” they teach but I have just been further enlightened. That the divisions in the body of Christ are rather caused by and rooted in the lower nature. What you reveal in your posting … that you go to God to reveal truth from error to you and accredit Him for what you now believe. Wow. Isn’t that interesting. I too have been going to the Lordand yet, I have been getting a completely different teaching. This tells me to the greatest degree how f—ed up things are. I have no desire to communicate any further with you and what your God has been revealing to you. But, if you feel the need to rebut, just know that I will delete any further email notifications from you as unread.
        Come Lord Jesus. Come TODAY!!!
        Looking for and loving His appearing,
        Annette

      • Terry says:

        Annette… I don’t care much for whether or not you reply to this message or not, because it’s not all about you, honey. it’s about “Truth” matters for those who hunger for the accuracy of the Word. And by this I mean not only in reference to this site alone, but “Truth” matters to all believers who are willing to sacrifice the errors that they have been taught in the past and go back to what the Word states, not what men state. The tone of your messages and replies (not only to me, but the majority of your posts under this site) are very defensive, full of anger, with some hate mixed in with that. I can only imagine that this was spurred on by experiences in the past by a certain ministry in Ohio where many had allowed themselves to be hurt by certain men in leadership positions as continually manifested in the site called greasespot cafe. The problem with the Ohio ministry was that many allowed themselves to get hurt, and never paid attention to what was being taught, which, I believe was about 75% accurate. So, to this day, on greasespot, people are still living in the past, their negative experiences and hurt that that ministry or leadership from that ministry may of caused them. But, they ignore the true cause behind every effect in the world, which is spiritual. Essentially they chose to worship the man/men than worship the Creator. Always happens when one’s priorities in life are skewed where this world and/or the things in this world are deemed more important than God, His Word and His Son. So, the negative history and experiences that people had in that ministry or other ministries that taught part truths continually plague them, and they refuse to let go and move on and grow from those experiences. I was involved with that Ohio ministry for over 4 years, perhaps a much shorter time than many others. However, to this day I’m thankful for the time I had with that ministry as I grew tremendously, and yet, at the same time, I was able to separate out Truth from error, always keeping my mouth shut, for I was there to learn for the time I was to be with that ministry. I knew the day that I attended my first fellowship that my time would be limited to all that I could learn from them and that I would know the exact day that I was to leave. And it all came to pass that way.

        The spirit that is intregally created as a part of me is of love, joy, meekness, humbleness, kindness and the desire to learn and grow in the accuracy of God’s Word. He has given all born again believers the ability to separate out Truth from error. As I have said, no church, or otherwise has 100% of the accuracy. There’s a reason for the verse that states, “Study to show yourself approved unto God, a workman that needs not be ashamed, RIGHTLY DIVIDING the Word of Truth. Along with that, one must have a meek, humble, believing heart and ask for guidance in prayer to the only True God, Creator of the heavens and the earth, Father of our Lord and Savior Christ Jesus. Now if I had any other god, I would not boldly profess these facts and I would fall into the trap of being defensive and full of anger. In other words, I could lash out like you have several times in this site and all it would breed is hatred, envy, strife, tumults, etc. I’m not going there for I firmly believe that our post speak loudly as to the type of spirit we are manifesting. I can only finalize this thread with you by saying, may God bless you, guide you and keep you in the name of His beloved son Christ Jesus, my eternal Lord and Savior. Annette, my hand is still reached out to you to fellowship and share. However, I will not argue or debate the Word. I will only share chapter and verse and what I’ve learned through research…… research that fits with the rest of the Word. I’m always willing to change what I have previously been taught, so long as it fits with the Word, for it’s God’s Word and Will that matters; not one’s opinion, view, private interpretation, culture or tradition. I hope and pray that all believers during our time here in this dark and perverse world will also sacrifice the errors for the Truth.

  7. Wilfried says:

    I would have liked to listen to the recordings. How could I download it, with what program would help me to listen to it?

    Thanks for help.

  8. you should be able to with Windows Media Player [WMP] Wilfried…

  9. Jesse says:

    Apparently Jesus Christ accomplished very little according to your misinterpretation of the scriptures…It’s a shame that you think by some of your own good works and obedience that you can earn Gods grace and salvation…Israel wasn’t able to do it…What makes you think you can?

  10. sean says:

    Hey Jesse,

    Good to see you on here engaging with this issue. The subject under consideration is not whether or not one needs to earn forgiveness of sins. That is all paid for by the blood of the lamb. The question is whether or not God destroys our free will to turn away from him. There are quite a few texts throughout the Bible, that clearly and unmistakably indicate that perseverance is necessary to keep salvation. Thinking that we can do whatever we want after we have been forgiven is not only bad theology but it is dangerous (speaking from personal experience). Paul clearly teaches us that we should not become arrogant, overly confident, that we will remain attached to God’s tree of faith. If we cease to stand in faith (which God helps us do so long as we are willing) then we will be cut off:

    (Rom 11:17-23 NAU) 17 But if some of the branches were broken off, and you, being a wild olive, were grafted in among them and became partaker with them of the rich root of the olive tree,
    18 do not be arrogant toward the branches; but if you are arrogant, remember that it is not you who supports the root, but the root supports you.
    19 You will say then, “Branches were broken off so that I might be grafted in.”
    20 Quite right, they were broken off for their unbelief, but you stand by your faith. Do not be conceited, but fear;
    21 for if God did not spare the natural branches, He will not spare you, either.
    22 Behold then the kindness and severity of God; to those who fell, severity, but to you, God’s kindness, if you continue in His kindness; otherwise you also will be cut off.
    23 And they also, if they do not continue in their unbelief, will be grafted in, for God is able to graft them in again.

    or consider this second agricultural analogy wherein Jesus compares our situation to a vine:

    (Joh 15:1-6 NAU) “I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser.
    2 “Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit, He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit, He prunes it so that it may bear more fruit.
    3 “You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you.
    4 “Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me.
    5 “I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.
    6 “If anyone does not abide in Me, he is thrown away as a branch and dries up; and they gather them, and cast them into the fire and they are burned.

    I would be interested to hear how you understand these scriptures.

    • Max says:

      The quoting of Romans 11 verses 17-23 without quoting verse 13 causes the writer’s misunderstanding…

      Verse 13 – “For I speak to you GENTILES…”

      Also the quoting of John 15:1-6 without understanding Matthew 15:24 results in further misunderstanding:

      “But he answered and said, I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of ISRAEL.

      The writer’s error is clear: Foundational truths missed, all other truths misunderstood…

    • Terry says:

      Max….I believe there is confusion regarding salvation conditional upon sin versus salvation dependent upon keeping our faith in Jesus Christ as our Lord. The two do not go hand in hand, for God knows the sinful nature of the flesh in that sin was passed down through the bloodline of Adam and Eve. This is one of the reasons why we needed a savior and mediator betweeen God and mankind. He knew/knows that sin is of the flesh, and, regardless of whether or not we are born again, we need that mediator to ask for forgiveness, something that ALL Christians should regularly ask for on a daily basis. The key is always Romans 10:9-10. These provisions do not place a timeline on eternal life. In other words, it does not say, that all that we must do is one time in our life, confess and believe that Jesus Christ is our Lord and believe God raised him from the dead. This establishes our faith, which we must endure, hold onto, hold fast, be steadfast, run the race, press towards the mark, etc. Romans 10:9-10 qualifies us for that race, and the fiery trial of our faith commences. God expects us to to endure to the end IN THE FAITH, never denouncing our faith. Believe it or not, there are people out there that have, with conviction in their hearts, did what Romans 10:9-10 tells us to do to obtain, salvation; yet, when the going gets tough with their surroundings and with men who represented themselves as “men of God”, they depart from the faith, and shockingly denounce Jesus Christ as their Lord and denounce the only True God as their God. The Word is packed with logical statements. When you apply the logic, it all fits very neatly within the Word. So, given the many verses in the gospels and in the epistles that logically states that we must endure in the faith to “win the race” to obtain the crown of life which is eternal life, and asking yourself the logical question of, “what happens if I do the opposite of what Romans 10:9-10 states, the answer is very clear. It places you back with the rest of the world and part of the “children of unbelief”. Again, God knows that we will continue to sin from time-to-time, and therefore we have an adcovate with the Father, Jesus Christ our Lord. If a believer, decides, by the freedom of their will to confess and believe that Jesus Christ is no longer their Lord, the True God is no longer their God….it’s then a whole different story.

      • Max says:

        Thank you for correcting the error in Romans 10:9 – the correct reading according to your gospel then is:

        “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved, unless thou sin, in which case thy salvation will be taken away, unless thou shalt again confess with the mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt again believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, then thou shalt be saved again, and so on, ad infinitum, forever and ever, amen…”

        Unbelievable that anyone could believe such error.

        Timeline on eternal life? You’ve got to be kidding.. If not, then you are truly lost in the word of God.

      • Terry says:

        Mr. Max….on the contrary….you are adding to the Words of Romans 10:9-10, as VPW and the leadership did, if you were a part of that ministry. Unbelievable that you don’t see it…ignoring the many, many verses, word for word, written throughout the gospels and epistles that are very clear, precise, logical, black and white about enduring to the end, being steadfast in the faith, holding onto the faith, remaining in the faith, etc, etc. Christ stated it. Paul, Peter and John in the epistles WRITTEN TO THE CHURCH stated it several times. Yet, you conveniently ignore these verses and cling onto the safe haven that if one flakes out on their faith, and, from the heart confesses that they no longer accept Jesus Christ as their Lord; no longer accept the only True God, and chooses to worship the things of this world, or idols, then despite this denouncement of faith, they are saved anyway, and that they’ll just miss out on a few rewards. Geez! To go along with that theology is to ignore the entire Bible and the commandments thereof. God never changes. People change. You should stop and consider why there are many verses that exhort us to hold onto the faith. Do you honestly think that it tells us to do that so that we can obtain more rewards in heaven?!—’After all, it really doesn’t matter if I throw the bible in the fire place, become agnostic, atheist, or a false god worshipper! Because after all, once-saved-always-saved!! And I’ll just miss out on a few rewards’— I don’t think so!

        Believing that Romans 10:9-10 is just a one-shot deal, whether or not one continues to accept Jesus Christ as their Lord, they’ll still be a saint, risen when Christ comes back and received up into heaven to be with Christ forever.

        From your comment, the substance of it, the defensive nature of it, tells me that you need to follow the direction in II Timothy 2:15.

  11. Xavier says:

    Jesse

    I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, and so, somehow, attaining to the resurrection from the dead.

    Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me.

    Brethren, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. Phil 3.10-14

    From the ESV Study Bible:

    Phil. 3:12 Paul stresses that he is not already perfect—he is still involved in the struggles of life in a fallen world and hence he still sins; the full glory of the resurrection remains in the future. I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. There is a balance of faith and works, of God’s call and the believer’s response.

  12. Jon Davidson says:

    Dear Sean,

    You know why Jesus Christ has become a stumbling block to you and your father?

    Because he takes all the joy out of your good works.

    Love in Him,
    Jon

  13. sean says:

    Dear Jon,

    Have we met? Could you be a bit more specific? I have a lot of joy in my life. Christ is not a stumbling block to me, but the chief cornerstone upon which, we like stones, are being built as a temple for God’s glory. I guess I just don’t follow your reasoning.

  14. Bruce Taylor says:

    I have twice listened to this teaching and have been very moved by it, thank you. You were able to cross that line of salvation through grace and the righteousness that must follow. You said it correctly, we are saved by Grace, it is the LOVE work of our Father Yahweh through His Son Christ Jesus who was obedient even to death on the stake, this was on our behalf only. Now we are called to be like Him, to die to sin and live for the God’s Glory. It is a faith calling to believe Him and to walk with Him and become like Him through our faith in Him and Christ’s work on our behalf.

    Does the Bible not say that we must put on the new man which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness Eph 4:24 KJV. How could we do that without growing daily through obedience of putting on this new man, step by step, like Paul running the race, seeking the finish line, never giving up… true to the end; we can make it, He desires that make it.

    He has a Kingdom waiting for us. I believe it is what the Kingdom will be like, righteous, like Him. I further believe the Bible teaches that creation works on righteousness and all that it is and it cannot work any other way and so when you have disbelief as in Adam and Eve, you have the world that we see today. In the coming Kingdom, it will not be so, we will walk like Christ walked, obedient to the ways of God so that God may be all and in all; we will be like him and creation will return to its original state…

    I hope I have not offended or spoken in a way that misrepresents this teaching and its intention?

    Warm Regards

    bt

  15. Shirley says:

    God bless Sean. Is your father the Vince Finnegan who was once an ordained minster by way of the Way international. I was really excited when I stumbled acrosss his website. Thankful you all are contuning steadfastly in the doctrine of God’s Word and usually the prinsiples of biblical research and teaching. . these post have left an uneasy feeling though. I really hope you have contined in the doctrine God lead our father in the Word to share with us alll… did u get to take P.F.A.L. the . class

  16. sean says:

    Hello Shirley,

    Yes, my father, Vince Finnegan, was employed (and eventually terminated) by the Way International. Did you get a chance to listen to this mp3? My father makes a biblical case for conditional salvation. The Scripture must be our authority not what others have said. I encourage you to take a listen to this show and then comment on the specific points made. Truth has nothing to fear.

  17. mj smalley says:

    Wow! I was going to suggest to my husband that we send our teen to one of Vince’s summer camps(if he still has them that is), but no way after I read this site.

    All I can say is, wow!

  18. Annette says:

    I am encouraged by some of these comments…encouraged that there are others who have not gone down with this deception.

    And, to address one of the comments made here by Sean who said:
    “The Scripture must be our authority not what others have said. ”

    Let’s be real Sean. Did you or your Dad come to your current “interpretation” solely from your own diligent study of the Scripture and therefore by IT’S authority alone as your statement of reproof implies? Or were YOU TOO influenced by “…what others have said.” (such as: Anthony Buzzard) to now come to your current position of conditional salvation?

  19. Xavier says:

    Annette

    What “deception”? Do you and mj personally know the Finnigans or something?

  20. Annette says:

    What deception you ask? I did a few posts earlier on in this thread if you would like to read them to get the answer to your question.

  21. Xavier says:

    Annette

    Whatever message your trying to get across through your posts are lost in translation due to the condencending attitude you show towards the “foolish Finneganians”.

    • Annette says:

      Xavier

      I just looked the word “condescension” up to be perfectly clear on what your reaction was to my earlier postings as well as your accusation:

      Condescension: “The trait of displaying arrogance by patronizing those considered inferior.”

      Absolutely not my intent but, intent does not always communicate well either.

      I’m pretty sure that you are aware of what those words were a play upon. (O Foolish Galatians, who has bewitched you that you should not obey the truth…Gal 3:1a )

      And those who have let another talk them out of the grace of God unto “another gospel”, have they not behaved foolishly? But perhaps, if you were one of those Galatians Paul was speaking to, you would have found that Paul was condescending saying that you had been bewitched as well.

      Sorry you felt that way. I don’t know if it’s an: “if the shoe fits” kind of thing or if you are just overly sensitive but, if that is all you got out of what I posted, what can I say about that?

      … as our brother Paul said and as I know to be true: “…the offence of the cross has NOT ceased”.

      Maranatha

  22. Xavier says:

    Annette

    What can I say, there is wisdom in deception.

  23. Terry says:

    I’m about to listen to Vince’s position on this subject. But before I do so, I’d like to input my own position, which is contrary to what VPW (TWI) taught concerning “once-saved-always-saved”. The position that I am going to state was not enfluenced by any person (Anthony Buzzard) or anyone else. Let’s just say that I was gently moved in this direction after asking God to teach me as I was deeply concerned about people who were once “rooted and grounded” in the Truth….knew the Word backwards and forwards, could turn their back on the faith, denouncing their faith. I then, within one day after praying about it, found myself reading Phillipians chapter 3 and discovered that Paul had the same issues, with particular reference to verses 13 through 21. This started my quest on challenging the “once-saved-always-saved notion, where many cling onto the verse that states that we are saved by grace. I noticed, through my own research, and recalling a Logic class that I had in college years ago, that there are many, many verses that contain “if”/”then” logical statements. This includes not only the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, but also the apostles. After completing my study, which is available to anyone that requests a soft copy of it, that Romans 10:9-10 is not a one-shot scenario…. conveniently where one can confess Jesus Christ as their Lord, believing God raised him from the dead, and then a day, week, month or year later, state just the opposite of Romans 10:9-10… denouncing that Jesus Christ is their Lord, that there is no God…or if there is, he never raised Jesus Christ up from the dead….that it was just a trip or a temporary thing that I once believed. Afterall…. if it’s once-saved-always-saved, what do I have to loose? Right? NO!! This does not fit with the rest of the Word! It is a continual freewill choice. However, our state is not changed each time we sin. In other words, if I sin, then God’s gonna snatch away my eternal life. Then, once I ask for forgiveness through Jesus Christ, God gives that eternal life back to me. That position would be nothing short of ridiculous, for God knows the weakness of our flesh, in that sin was passed down throught the bloodline. This is one of the reasons why we have an adcovate and mediator between God and we believers….. that we merely ask from our hearts for forgiveness in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, and God grants us that forgiveness, wiping the slate clean. We do not lose eternal life (our state or position) because of sins we commit. We can lose it by denouncing our faith in Jesus Christ as our Lord. God bless you all, in the name of our Lord Christ Jesus!

  24. Terry says:

    Now that I listened to the interview with Vince, I stand behind my earlier post and agree with Vince on this matter of once-saved-always-saved. We are Christians, saved by grace, and our faith is put to the test. It doesn’t stop at Romans 10:9-10. Our faith is continual…and it’s always from the heart, for God always looks upon the heart of a believer. We believed from the heart that Jesus Christ is our risen Lord and Savior and we love and dedicate ourselves to the only True God and Father of our Lord Christ Jesus. It is from the heart that we desire and strive to get to the place in our lives where we can become most pleasing in God’s sight. Yet God knows the weakness of the flesh and mind. Romans chapter 7 really has helped me in my walk, in that Paul writes about the turmoil he had in his walk. It should be a standard in our walk that we want to try and do that which our Heavenly Father wants us to do and to be. At the same time, He knows that we are not perfect in the flesh and that we’ll make mistakes, fall down and get up. If we fall, God is always there to pick us up, dust us off and give us a pat on the rear and exhort us to try our best and learn from it…so long as we ask for forgiveness, and desire to get up and get dusted off. I remember these words from the ministry I was with back in the 70s: “Faith is an inside job”. It truly is. Faith without works is dead— what this means to me is that we manifest what we believe. Just as you, Sean, and others that post on this site….. this is one aspect of works, in that we share our hearts with others…we fellowship….we desire to teach others and share the Word with those who are truly hungering and thirsting for righteousness, so that we are able to help bring them to salvation. Great interview, Sean! By the way, there is a slight difference between being saved and receiving eternal life, although the two go hand-in-hand. Being saved, equates to being saved from the wrath to come. Eternal life is the end result of being saved.

  25. virginia reynolds says:

    Hello to Sean and his Dad,
    Thank you so much for your talk. The one thing I want to thank you for is the line- (What can I do for God today) I will write that down and put it where I can see it everyday and have that thought indeed in my mind. Regarding the thought of hell. It is terrible that churches make people believe that if they are not saved they will go to hell, there is no such place as hell, that is the grave. I believe
    no one is actually saved competely until they are resurrected to life at the resurrection. I will certainly go to your web site. I do wish I had a church where I live that spoke the truth. That’s why
    I am thankful for these sites and the Focus of the Kingdom I get from Anthony Buzzard, I’m also glad to have found the new blog site to follow and send my comments to. With much thanks Virginia.

  26. virginia reynolds says:

    PS. Sorry I did not mention about your talk on grace,
    it is wrong to allow people to believe that just to
    believe on Jesus and you are saved but you can still
    carry on your life as per usual. I live in England and
    am thankful I am no longer young, I do feel very sorry
    for young people in this day and age, families do not seem to give guidance, did they get it themselves.
    The other thing is how churches can teach people that they go to heaven, who would want to look down on this
    world and see all the terrible things happening, could
    you imagine a grandfather looking down and see a grandson kill another child, I’m thankful the Father
    never allowed it to happen but there is going to be a
    new heaven and a new earth for those resurrected to life at the end of all things when the Father is on
    the earth also. Virginia

  27. Max says:

    The quoting of Romans 11 verses 17-23 without quoting verse 13 causes the writer’s misunderstanding…

    Verse 13 – “For I speak to you GENTILES…”

    Also the quoting of John 15:1-6 without understanding Matthew 15:24 results in further misunderstanding:

    “But he answered and said, I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of ISRAEL.

    The writer’s error is clear: Foundational truths missed, all other truths misunderstood…

    • Max says:

      Mr. Terry how telling that you do not post what you say are the “many, many verses” for readers to consider, but just your own words, reminds me of Philippians 3:19 “whose God is their belly…”, and the vitriolic hate your words express reminds me of the verse that talks about how the Pharisees were “filled with madness” and wanted to kill Jesus…please don’t be a hater…

      • Terry says:

        Well, Max.. I rest my case regarding all that I’ve posted in contrast to what you have posted in your replies. They both stand on their own merits. You certainly, by the freedom of your will, have the right to believe and confess whatever you choose; just as I do. By the grace of God love and mercy, we will come closer and closer to the complete accuracy of His Word, which at this time, not one person, not one church, not one group can rightfully proclaim that they have 100% accuracy. Some may think they do, and some do have more accuracy than others. This usually is outwardly manifested in what we verbally confess or what we confess in our writings from time to time. So, we both stand firmly on what we have learned, and let the merits of what we’ve written stand on their own merits. Either way, it will be proven by the test of time when ALL will be manifested. May God bless you through my Lord Christ Jesus.

  28. Eric Iverson says:

    I too have recently come to seriously question the Way Ministry doctrine that if you speak in tongues it’s proof that you’re “going to heaven [regardless of lifestyle] and all hell can’t stop you.”
    One section I think of in this context is Ephesians 5:5-6 “For this ye know of a surety, that no fornicator, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolator, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. Let no man deceive you with empty words ["vain words" in kJV]; for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the sons of disobedience.”
    Of course, the teaching at that time was that “inheritance” referred to “rewards”, and not to eternal life.
    I often wonder if the whole damn thing was ever anything but deceit with “vain words” but I try not to be bitter and cynical about it.
    At any rate, even if it WAS, it’s not God’s fault …. He never indicated that it was OK to sin!

    • Terry Sordal says:

      Hey, Eric… Thanks for your input to my message! Wow!! Almost a year ago I posted that!! Anyway…. You know?– To this day, I believe the only True God guided us to that Ministry. Nothing is by chance, luck or it-just-so-happened. I must believe, after having asking God from the depths of my heart, two weeks prior to coming into contact with a Way believer.. and then “magically” this kid from Ohio comes up to me out of the blue and asks me, “I understand that you want to learn about God’s Word?” Well, needless to say, this blew me away!!! So, it was about the same amount of time (two weeks after having attended my first Way fellowship) that that still quiet voice came to me and told me that my “involvement with this Way, would not last, and that I would know the day and time when I would leave”. This blew me away also! As time went on, I had the knowingness that I was guided, per my requested desire to learn the Word, to the Way Ministry to learn the basic accuracy of the Word and that I would learn also to be able to separate out Truth from error… not only with what others teach, but also to separate out the error from the Truth that the Way Ministry teaches. one of the issues I had during the course of my involvement with The Way, was SIT. I knew within my heart that this was wrongly interpreted by VPW and therefore “privately interpreted”. There were other issues that bothered my heart concerning the leadership and their manifested actions and inactions.. but too lengthy to go into here. So… yes… the day and the time did come, just as God told me it would.. and that very day… I left the ministry…. it was in September 1978. Perfect timing…. as I learned from about that time going forward, the Ministry became worse and thereby, became darker and darker. So, looking back on the 4 years of my involvement, I still can confidently state that God did guide me to that Ministry for a purpose… and that purpose was to learn the basics… the foundation of His Word, separate out the errors, hold onto the Truths, and continue to grow further in His Word, using the basic principles as a foundation to grow further. Much of what I’ve learned in a dynamic, miraculous way, has been in the last 4 years, living out here in Montana in a rural northwestern area of this State. The first revelation, regarded the concept of “once-saved-always-saved”. I studied this topic, analyzed it, and with God’s help, concluded (without private interpretation) that this position was taught wrongly. Eric….. there’s a wealth of scriptural backup to prove this point without interjecting my own two cents. Next, was the topic of speaking in tongues, which upon conclusion of my research, I know now why it bothered my heart so much about this, while in The Way. During that time, I kept my mouth shut, for, after all, I was there to learn the most I could…to establish that baseline, and then leave the Ministry. Next was the topic of the original sin. When you follow the figures of speech regarding the words “tree”, “fruit”, “eat”, then work the Word and with it’s logic, it is very easy to conclude that the original sin was not a physical piece of fruit… but that it was partaking in a particular action… and that action is exactly what the devil attempted to get Jesus Christ to do– and that is to bow down and worship him.— that was the original sin, the test that Adam and Eve miserably failed and where Jesus Christ passed that test. So… anyway, Eric… hope this message blessed you. NEVER believe that your involvement with The Way Ministry was a curse or a waste of time. It gave you that foundation in the Word to grow from. Wierwille and the rest of that leadership were all men who had sin in their flesh and battled with sin just as we do. Some allowed sin to overcome them, and some moved on and conquered those sins. Wierwille said it graceously: “It’s not VP Wierwille, it’s not Henry Baloko or Johnny Jumpup!! It’s the Word and nothing but the Word. Look me up on Facebook. I’m there if you’d like to fellowship more. I’m not one of those who believes that one has to have thousands of Facebook friends. I found that most of those types enjoy arguing, defending, debating the Word. I do not. God bless you in the name of our Lord, Savior and King, Christ Jesus!

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