True Salvation and Certainty


John 1:12 But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, 13 who were born, not of blood nor of

the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.

I was reading an article about how people should learn how to become critical thinkers and use logic when determine what to follow in theology thinking. I found that amusing as that is the same argument many atheists use to challenge the concept of God. The article was really about making a statement for the Calvinist stance and trying to deem the Arminian point of view as emotionally based.

I can see how they can come to the thought that God chooses who He will save if we look at such a small passage and make it standalone. We have the right to become children of God, but not by natural birth or through works or by the choice/desire of man. Does that really eliminate the choice of man to accept God’s offer of becoming His child? I am not bashing Calvinism here. If God truly sent Jesus to become sin and to take our place for all sin, then the gift of adoption should be open for all. If I choose to accept Jesus, I am not saying my acceptance has placed me into the kingdom, but rather it is the power of Jesus on the cross that did it for me. All my acceptance does is not reject the gift from God.

Another passage that was used:

Hebrews 6:4 For it is impossible, in the case of those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, and have shared in the Holy Spirit, 5 and have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the age to come, 6 and then have fallen away, to restore them again to repentance, since they are crucifying once again the Son of God to their own harm and holding him up to contempt.

The passage is saying that those who have been made to see the heavenly gift, and experienced it, and have partnered with the Holy Spirit, experienced Jesus and the miracles of the Messianic period. If they apostatized, it is impossible to restore them by repentance again, as they are trying to crucify Jesus again and shaming the act that Jesus did on the cross. Fun isn’t it.

I love Hebrews 6. it starts out with:

Hebrews 6:1 Therefore let us leave the elementary doctrine of Christ and go on to maturity, not laying again a foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God, 2 and of instruction about washings, the laying on of hands, the resurrection of the dead, and eternal judgment. 3 And this we will do if God permits.

Here we get the basics of Christianity. The writer is saying, we have already laid the foundations of Christianity so lets move on to maturity (meat) if God so allows us. Why? Because it is impossible to re-crucify Jesus when you fall away from God as Jesus died for all sins. To try and crucify Him against only shames Him as your behavior and thoughts declare what He did as insufficient. It isn’t about when someone stops believing in God that they can not come back to the kingdom or that they are still saved if they fall away. It is saying you can not keep trying to claim the blood of Jesus to wash you clean each time you fall away as Jesus did it for all of mankind once and that once is more than sufficient.

Look at it this way. Jesus lived in perfect obedience to the Father. He is the only one who has never sinned nor been under the sin nature of man. He went to the cross and became sin in order to atone for us. In order to atone for all sin, God knew all of the sins that each person would commit to the very second of their death until the Day of Judgment. Jesus had to take all of that on Himself. If we fall away and sin, to say that those sins were not covered says that what Jesus did was not enough. All sins were forgiven, so we need to move past this part of our belief doctrine and move on to other areas.

We have to trust God when He says He will not leave nor forsake us. Once you accept Jesus and give your life to Him, you enter into salvation. Hold on to that knowledge because we can trust God. The other side is that we have to hope we are one of the elect that God wanted to save but we wont know that until Jesus comes again. Then we could share our uncertain eternal hope with Muslims and Atheists. Personally, I will stick with my beliefs.

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9 Comments

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9 responses to “True Salvation and Certainty

  1. societyvs

    Great question coming up – do Christians still sin even after acceptance of the blood of Jesus? Would they sin with or without that blood sacrifice then?

    • Yes. Anytime you have disobedience you have sin. Salvation doesn’t stop or prevent that from happening.

      The blood removes the penalty of death and allows us to become children of God. Adopted into the family of God, lower than Jesus, but higher than the angels. We become co-heirs with Christ.

  2. societyvs

    “Salvation doesn’t stop or prevent that from happening.” (Xander)

    So with or without a blood atonement theory – we will still sin. I get that.

    “The blood removes the penalty of death and allows us to become children of God.” (Xander)

    Have Christians died in the past 2000 years? Is this death penalty now or later? Did Adam really die for example or was he just a figurative story?

    How does the blood sacrifice allow you to become a child of God exactly? Why is it Jewish people don’t see the need for this and they still understood themselves as ‘sons of God’?

    How many are covered by an action none of us have anything to do with? For example, Jesus was the one that died on behalf of others – how much people are covered in this action? Everyone? Many? Some? Just those who ‘believe’ it is real?

    • Yes, but we are not talking about a physical death, but rather a spiritual death. I believe that the death penalty comes after judgment. My understanding is that Adam is was real and truly died a physical death. That doesn’t mean he went to hell though.

      Jesus was without sin and was obedient to the Father into death. The perfect sacrifice for all sins. With salvation, my sin nature (flesh) dies on the cross and I am reborn with a spiritual nature. I am reconciled back to the Father and no longer separated by that sin nature I was born with. I am adopted spiritually as God became my new father.

      Jewish people, who still follow Judaism, are still following the Law to try and be righteous. The Law is a works based system and no one can be found righteous under it. Until one dies, they are still under the law. The law points out that we are sinful and that we fall short of God. Abraham was found to be righteous based on faith alone. I know Israel the nation was considered children of God, but I didn’t find that reference after the Law was given.

      All are covered by the sacrifice of Jesus. That is why it is a gift and nothing we can earn. All are covered, but not all will receive the gift.

  3. Jesus this, Paul that, Hebrews the other. Doesn’t it make you dizzy? Don’t you think that if it were good news it would be simple?

    I’m sorry I wasted my life with all those mismatching pieces of a worthless puzzles. For me, it is more important to get on with the business of life, rather than worrying with the business of dying. And if there is a god, I’m sure she agrees.

    • I kind of enjoy it. I think the news is rather simple, but reasoning seems to complicates it.

      Your right. People are so focused on dying and what will happen afterwards that they don’t do what we are called to do, love each other.

  4. societyvs

    “My understanding is that Adam is was real and truly died a physical death. That doesn’t mean he went to hell though.” (Xander)

    This is interesting because the punishment of death put on Adam was not a spiritual death – it was he was really going to die (physically). Alongside the other punishments – which are also not ‘spiritual’ in nature. However, I do understand how Paul arrived at his interpretation on this topic…pardes interpretation states there are more than one way to interpret a verse. I used the pesher version (literal) and Paul may be using a more figurative meaning within that verse.

    “With salvation, my sin nature (flesh) dies on the cross and I am reborn with a spiritual nature.” (Xander)

    Prior to this you have no spiritual nature I gather? Which makes Adam very interesting – when did he get his spiritual nature? When he recieved the punishments from God he was a human being – was he created with it?

    “The Law is a works based system and no one can be found righteous under it” (Xander) and “People are so focused on dying and what will happen afterwards that they don’t do what we are called to do, love each other” (Xander)

    You are aware the idea to ‘love each other’ is an actual law from Leviticus right?

    I guess I find this odd, on one hand you condemn the law and on the other hand you uphold it? Why do you uphold something you also condemn as ‘unneccesary’?

    • God stopped walking with Adam. There was a separation that Adam experienced that wasn’t there before. Yes, Adam suffered a physical death, but where in Genesis does it say Adam wouldn’t have experienced that anyways? How is a curse on the land not a spiritual punishment? A curse is spiritual by nature.

      Adam was created with a spiritual nature, in the image of God. He sinned and that aspect died. Only 2 of the three pieces, body and soul, remained with him. God was still able to commune with him, but He didn’t commune with him in the same way.

      I don’t condemn the law, but I say that following the law will not bring about righteousness. Righteousness is awarded through faith. Because of that faith, the believer will want to follow the law. Being good and following the law does not make a person right with God. It never has. The law was given because the people didn’t want the personal relationship with God. Israel said they would rather be told what to do by Moses instead of going into God’s presence. They got what they asked for, a list of things to do that they could not hold to. The law’s purpose was to show man that he/she can not be right with God based on their own efforts.

      I am not claiming the law is unnecessary. I am saying that trying to fulfill the law is not needed when you are in Christ. He fulfilled every aspect of the law, so when I am in Him, I have also fulfilled it. That doesn’t mean to not keep with the law, as given by Jesus. It means that I am not under the punishment for failing to fulfill the law.

      I am assuming you hold that the Tanak is the Word of God and the New Testament is more of a suggestion. Is that correct?

  5. societyvs

    “Yes, Adam suffered a physical death, but where in Genesis does it say Adam wouldn’t have experienced that anyways?” (Xander)

    I think it is true – there is no ‘eternalness’ to Adam…however the argument can be made this was the case. The only thing God advises Adam not to eat from is ” from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat from it you will surely die (Gen 2:17)’. Prior to this we are not sure whether Adam is going to live forever or was created to die…we do know after that sentence Adam can die.

    Adam eats, what is the punishment? “By the sweat of your face You will eat bread, Till you return to the ground, Because from it you were taken; For you are dust, And to dust you shall return. (Gen 3:19)’. It seems clear enough to me the punishment (death – back to the dust/ground) should match what God told Adam earlier. If I was asked what Adam is cursed with in Genesis 3 – I would say ‘physical death’ because spiritual death does not include any of the ideas of chapter 3. I am not sure the interpretation of spiritual death is actually there.

    “How is a curse on the land not a spiritual punishment? A curse is spiritual by nature.” (Xander)

    Curse to work the land is a physical punishemnt through and through – like pain in child-birth is. Here is small test of the spirituality of the punishments – whether they are spiritual in nature or not? Can you get work done by praying about it? Does child-birth hurt less (or stop altogether) if we pray about it? Can we make money to buy food via thought and belief?

    I do believe we are spiritual people in general mind you – and when Adam was cursed he was physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual…all at the same time. Now all those would die with his actual death – but they all co-exist and one without the other is no longer existing. So I say it was physical in nature – because I do not seperate a person’s spiritual being from his physical one (they seem to be inter-dependant).

    “Adam was created with a spiritual nature, in the image of God.” (Xander)

    But that passage is up for interpretive dispute on what that means? God is a Spirit – this is my belief anyways…so we have a spiritual aspect to us. However, Adam is made of flesh and dies…God is not made of flesh nor does he die. God is nothing like Adam in some ways…maybe we were created similar in other ways (like creativity, choice, etc).

    “It means that I am not under the punishment for failing to fulfill the law.” (Xander)

    This is also up for interpretive debate…why follow the law is the better question? Can you disregard the law altogether, accept Christ, and make it to heaven?

    “I am assuming you hold that the Tanak is the Word of God and the New Testament is more of a suggestion. Is that correct?” (Xander)

    I think they are both inspired by God – in that people wrote as they were inspired by God. It does not mean mistakes were not made and agenda’s were not pursued (these are human authors we are talking about). I give the NT lots of validity – I am a Christian – I believe Jesus. I also temper the NT by the Tanakh – and do not let the colorings of church history define what is being said in the gospels and letters.

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