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Sunday, July 20, 2014

Does the Bible really say that? Excerpt from my book, 44



[Concluding a discussion of whether or not a believer can lose her salvation.]

A person who does not believe in eternal security has to cope with quite a bit of scripture indicating that God is able to save and seal for eternity. Those who don’t believe in eternal security defend their position by claiming that nothing in those promises rules out a choice by a believer to stop believing, and to stop acting like a Christian. God can keep, but we can choose not to be kept, they say.

On the other hand, a person who does believe in eternal security has to cope with quite a bit of scripture indicating that a believer, even one who has been one of the “partakers of the Holy Spirit,” and “tasted . . . the powers of the age to come” can fall away. There are statements that enduring to the end is important. The usual strategy for reconciling the scriptural warnings with a belief in eternal security is to claim that the warnings are actually warnings to non-believers. Here’s a rather lengthy scholarly article which does that. The article even explains the seeming description of a believer in the warning in Hebrews 6 (warning 4, in the list above) as actually being of an unbeliever.

There are two errors that we could make about this area, both dangerous. First, we might believe that God is eagerly waiting to catch us in sin, so He can condemn us. That’s not true. God the Son died for us, and loves us. He’s not trying to trip us up. Second, we might believe that God will cheerfully ignore all sorts of deliberate habitual sin. That doesn’t agree with the New Testament, either.

In conclusion, I’m not going to resolve the seeming contradiction. There is nowhere in the Bible that says that we must have absolutely correct doctrine in order to serve God. That’s good, because, if that were true, no one would measure up. (This is not an excuse for not trying to understand what God is telling us!) There is nowhere in the Bible that says that all our questions have to have a firm and exact answer. There are some questions that God has chosen not to answer.

The previous chapter discusses a topic that is far more important than settling arguments about eternal security, the question of who actually is a believer. I need to trust Christ for my salvation. I need to examine my own life. I should be sure that my life shows evidence that I am actually saved.


The above material is an excerpt from my self-published e-book, Does the Bible Really Say That?, which may be obtained free of charge, or purchased from Amazon for $0.99, which is the lowest price Amazon lets an author set. Scripture quotations are from the World English Bible, which is in the public domain.

The previous post in this series, on the topic of whether a redeemed person can lose their salvation, is here. God willing, the next post in this series will consider a different topic. Thanks for reading.

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