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Part 2 Gen. James Green
[SELECTED/ENHANCED STUDY EDITION~M.T.W.]
T HIS IS GOING to be our second session, court is in session: we’re going to find out if we’re guilty or innocent in how we handle the grace of God.
Now, in Part 1, we covered mainly out text found in Ephesians, chapter 2. Let me read that again out of the King James version. Verses 5 and 8 are the two texts I want to single out where it says: “Even when we were dead in sins, [He] hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;).” So, by grace we are saved, not by our works. And then in verse 8 it repeats that: “For by grace are ye saved through faith;” you’ve got to believe.
Now, this grace issue is very connected with the eternal security subject. John Calvin in his book: “A Treatise of the Eternal Predestination of God,” states his unBiblical and heretical beliefs:
“He traces their salvation (the remnant’s) to God’s free election, by which he plainly means that the sole cause of their not perishing with the rest of mankind was because they were freely elected of God. Whence follows the plain conclusion, that if all men were elected, no man would perish.”
Work out Salvation
“...WORK OUT your own salvation with fear and trembling” (Php. 2:12).
They push ‘God’s election’—God elects certain people for Heaven, certain people for Hell, and you can’t stop it. And my son Josh was talking about that yesterday in his sermon, how salvation is a free gift, as the Bible says.
With the doctrine of ‘election,’ like the Calvinists/reformed type people believe, it’s forced upon you, it’s no longer a free gift, it’s an obligation. You’re obligated to take this gift of salvation, and you may not want it, but God says: “I want you to have it,” so it is not by your own free will choice
Calvinist vs. Arminian
THE ARMINIANS AND THE CALVINISTS fight each other over this issue. The whole foundation of the Methodist church was broke over these very issues.
Richard Watson’s Biblical and Theological Dictionary (1831), sums up the ramifications of these differing beliefs:
“In the year 1729, Mr. John Wesley, being then fellow of Lincoln College, began to spend some evenings in reading the Greek Testament with Charles Wesley...They then began to visit the sick in different parts of the town, and the prisoners also, who were confined in the castle...in 1735, [they were joined] by the celebrated Mr. George Whitefield, then in his eighteenth year. After Mr. Whitfield returned from America in 1741, he declared his full assent to the doctrines of Calvin. Mr. Wesley, on the contrary, professed the Arminian doctrine, and had printed, in favour of perfection and universal redemption, and very strongly against election, a doctrine which Mr. Whitfield believed to be unscriptural. The difference, therefore, of sentiments between these two great men caused a separation. The Methodists, therefore, were now divided; one part following Mr. Wesley, and the other Mr. Whitfield.”
So we see that even denominations have broke in two over the ‘election’ subject.
Free Will Choice
SO, ELECTION is quite ridiculous, because it would have to do away with the whole free will of man. And of course they do not believe there is such thing as the FREE WILL CHOICE OF MAN, so it would be like we’re just robots that God computerizes, without any feelings, and without any faith, so we would be obligated to serve God even though we may not want to, because God elected us. But the Bible totally refutes all of that.
Dr. Max Younce states in his book NOT Chosen to Salvation:
“Man is totally responsible.
If election to salvation is true, then man has no freewill of his own; therefore, he must do as he is programmed to do. NO, WE ARE NOT ROBOTS BUT THINKING BEINGS, CREATED OF GOD. God gave Adam and Eve the freewill to obey or disobey when He placed them in Eden. The right of choice and freewill has been extended to every individual since then. Therefore, man is totally responsible for his own destiny since God..."...is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance" (2 Pet. 3:9).
“For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men...” (Titus 2:11).
WELL, GUESS WHO the elect are (according to them)? The people who believe their doctrine—the people who believe that they are the elect. What about the poor soul who is crying out somewhere? “Oh, forget you, I don’t care if you’re crying, I didn’t elect you, go to Hell”? Where’s the loving God in that? It all gets down to free-will choice.
And then in verse 9: “Not of works, lest any man should boast.” Now, he’s not saying we shouldn’t have good works, but he’s saying that “you don’t work to become good enough to get Christ.” You’re saved, I’m saved, as a sinner, not as a good person.
You accept faith by your own freewill choice. That choice is presented, and the Holy Spirit has drawn you to that place: accepting or rejecting Him. It’s the Holy Spirit’s work that does that. Then, once you become a Christian, you’ve accepted that free gift, and THEN you start your good works because of your gratitude for your salvation etc., not to earn the salvation which you already have.
THIS PASSAGE sums it up pretty well:
“Good works follow this faith, but cannot go before it; much less can sanctification, which implies continued a course of good works, springing from holiness of heart. Repentance, and fruits meet for repentance, go before faith. Repentance absolutely must go before faith; fruits meet for it, if there be opportunity. By repentance I mean conviction of sin, producing real desires and sincere resolutions of amendment; by salvation I mean not barely deliverance from hell, but a present deliverance from sin.
Faith, in general, is a divine supernatural evidence, or conviction of things not seen, not discoverable by our bodily senses: justifying faith implies not only a divine evidence or conviction that God was in Christ reconciling the world unto himself, but a sure trust and confidence that Christ died for my sins, that he loved me, and gave himself for me.
And the moment a penitent sinner believes this, God pardons and absolves him; and as soon as his pardon or justification is witnessed to him by the Holy Ghost, he is saved. From that time (unless he make shipwreck of the faith) salvation gradually increases in his soul” (Charles Buc’s Theological Dictionary, 1802).
"The Author of faith and salvation is God alone. There is no more of power than of merit in man; but as all merit is in the Son of God, in what he has done and suffered for us, so all power is in the Spirit of God..." (John Wesley).
Good works are proper. Not that you work your way into Heaven, or work your way to that Cross, but you work for Christ because you love Christ. And connected to that, as I said yesterday when we read Romans 6:23 is: “The wages of sin is death.” Whatever you work towards as a sinner, you get paid a very nice wage, and that wage is eternal death, or eternal separation from God, that’s what you earn. You earn it by your own free will. It’s not forced upon you, God doesn’t make you do those dirty things you do, it’s YOUR CHOICE to do them, and those things are what damn you. THOSE ARE THE WAGES YOU EARN.
GOING ON, it says salvation, or eternal salvation, “is a free gift;” just like we talked about yesterday. Basically, the definition of grace, that’s what we’re dealing with here is: “The divine influence upon the heart, and its reflection in the Christian life, including: gratitude, gift, and favor.” Those things are synonyms for grace.
Now, as I said yesterday, there was a man who was accusing me that he read one booklet and didn’t see the word “grace.” I don’t have to use the word “grace,” because there are words that are completely synonymous (meaning the same thing) as that word. But, it is good that we use the actual word “grace,” and I definitely do use that precise word frequently (see Ms. Ashley Brown’s letter, with statistics on how often I use the word “grace”). But, there are other synonyms that mean exactly the same thing.
NOW, LET’S GO to Titus 3:5, and start in verse 4 where it’s talking about: “But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared,” that’s talking about when Jesus came as a man. JESUS WAS THE MANIFESTATION OF GOD’S LOVE IN HUMAN FORM. God is love, and so is Jesus the Christ; Jesus the man represented that love. And what did Jesus do to prove that He loved us? Did He let us have our way? did He wink at sin? No, He died a cruel death to prove He loved us WHEN we were sinners, not when we were good, but when we were sinners Christ died for us. That’s ultimate love, and we as humans don’t fully understand it.
Then it says in verse 5: “Not by works of righteousness which we have done…” Now, that goes back to what we have done, which is what I’m just talking about how it’s nothing we’ve done: “but according to his mercy.” Now, that word “mercy” could be replaced with the word “grace.” “He saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost.”
Now, I think there’s another translation that does use the word “grace,” but like I say, they can be exchanged/interchanged. So, what you have there is YOU DON’T WORK TO BE SAVED, YOU WORK AFTER YOU’RE SAVED.
Holy Spirit’s Drawing
WHEN THE HOLY SPIRIT starts drawing us to Himself, as we’re sinners, and we feel like: “I’m going to change my life, I’ve got to stop doing this,” that’s when we become more eternity-oriented about our destiny. We’ve all been there. How do you think we got saved? Because the Holy Spirit was drawing us. That was God sending the Holy Spirit to draw us to the place of acceptance—to that place of final rejection, or acceptance of salvation. And then when we were drawn to that place by the Holy Spirit of God, and eventually the Gospel was presented, we had a choice right then to say ‘yes,’ or ‘no.’
I, and others, have said ‘no’ the first time around, but the Holy Spirit didn’t give up. Maybe He was drawing us 2 or 3 times until it came to the point where we said ‘yes’ to salvation, or it came to a point that God knew we weren’t going to ever choose Him, and we sealed our destination in eternal Hellfire because of that rejection. So, in that sense, God predestinates people to Hell because of their final rejection. But, it comes from us to start with—our rejection of that presented Gospel.
God doesn’t just arbitrarily out of the sky make a list of names, or shut His eyes and randomly point out certain people that are going to be saved, and others who will be damned. He doesn’t do that.
NOW, IN KITTEL’S DICTIONARY, other commentaries, and out of the Eastern Orthodox booklet I have, they’re saying that when you talk about grace, it’s usually connected to salvation. And it is—your initial salvation is connected to grace, BUT IT DOESN’T STOP THERE. Grace follows you all the days of your life—it’s with you every step that you make. Your first step is salvation, and grace goes all the way up the ladder. Hope you’re going upwards, and not backwards.
The grace that saved you, is the same grace that’s with you everyday—that sees you through your testings, your trials, your hardships, and it sees you through your blessings. That grace is there with His unmerited favor and the gifts talked about.
The Greek word charis (#G5485), with the main translation 130 times being grace, is also translated into these other words (which means they are synonyms):
* favour * thank
* thanks * pleasure
* acceptable * benefit
* gift * gracious
* joy * liberality
* thanked * thankworthy
(To find out more about these synonyms, see Gift of Grace Part 2)
This may seem like a lot of synonyms, but there are even more than that listed under other definitions of Greek words. There are dozens and dozens of places in the Bible where grace is used in connection with another word.
IF YOU GO TO ROMANS 5, verse 12, it’s talking about death through Adam, and life through Christ. Sin is where our problem came in. If you’re of your father Adam, then you’re in death. If you’re of time’s Father, Jesus Christ, then you’re in eternal life.
John Wesley explains how this defilement was passed on:
Q. "In what sense is Adam's sin imputed to all mankind?"
A. In Adam all die,
1. Our bodies then became mortal.
2. Our souls died, were disunited from God. And hence,
3. We are all born with a sinful, devilish nature; and reason whereof,
4. We are children of wrath, liable to death eternal (Rom. 5:18. Eph. 2:3)” (John Wesley, Minutes of Conference).
Going on to Romans 5, verse 19: “For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners…” Now I think that’s a bad translation, that makes you think: “many were, but not all were.” The “many,” is the Greek word polus (#G4183). Strong's defines it as an: “...adverb largely; neuter (plural) as adverb or noun often mostly largely: - abundant + altogether common + far (passed spent) (+ be of a) great (age deal -ly while) long many much oft (-en [-times])...” So we see that this word traces back to ALL THE TRIBES OF PEOPLE, all the cultures of people means the many peoples of the world—everybody was made sinners, there’s nobody that escaped that. Not just a few, or not just many, and a few didn’t, but ALL,
The Many Saints
“SO BY THE OBEDIENCE of one shall many be made righteous.”
John saw the saints who chose to follow the Lord as: “a great multitude, which no man could number, out of every nation, and of all tribes and peoples and tongues” (Rev.7:9). And keep in mind that these were only the saints, not all the many peoples who had lived on earth.
In other words, the many cultures, races, peoples, and cultures of people that would accept Christ, are made righteous through grace and mercy to salvation, by faith.
B i b l i c a l G r a c e
NOW, HERE YOU HAVE GRACE, faith, and Christ alone. Grace alone (sola gratia), faith alone (sola fide), and Christ only (solus Christus). You can’t get saved any other way.
Now, these three things here, as I said, are totally under attack by these modern Emergent Church people, and also the “once saved, always saved” people. So many are now slipping away from these Biblical principles to believing that there are other ways.
Once in Grace, STAY in Grace!
SALVATION GRACE? I want to talk about ‘sin grace.’ Is there such a thing as ‘sin grace’? Well, let’s turn to Romans 5:20.
My text here in verse 20 says: “Moreover the law entered, that the offence might abound. But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound.” Then in verse 21 it says: “That as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord.”
“Reign” means like a king reigning on a throne. Grace shall reign all the days of our life as long as we stay with Christ. If we stop serving Christ, grace stops, it doesn’t continue. “Once in grace, always in grace” is a bunch of baloney.
Now, I have a little booklet here before I get into my big study, it’s called “Conditional Security as Opposed to Unconditional Security.” Now, I’m bringing this in here because it’s hard to disconnect grace and eternal security. Some people think that when you’re teaching on grace, you’re teaching “once saved, always saved.” I don’t believe that. I believe that THE ONLY WAY YOU’RE SAVED IS IF YOU STAY SAVED—BY YOUR FREE CHOICE OF WANTING TO STAY SAVED. If you don’t want to be saved anymore, you can just throw your salvation away; you can give your gift away.
Now, I’ll just read a few things. In the introduction it says:
“It is with increasing alarm through the years that we have viewed the propagation of the fallacious doctrine of ‘once in grace, always in grace.’ We would not be so much concerned were it not for the fatal effects of this phrase of error upon the lives of those who accept such teachings without thorough investigation.”
There’s some people that don’t investigate this: they just hear it taught in a church, and they believe it.
“The Word of God so plainly sets forth the plan and purpose of salvation, and no one should be misled by sophistry (/sophisticated) of certain present day interpretations of Scripture reality to that which constitutes this abiding union with God”
“...You believe one time and you are saved and you do not have to continue to believe to stay saved...”
(An example of John W. White’s false doctrine, excerpt from his book: Doctrine of Election).
Now, what eternal security says is: “You’re going to go to Heaven no matter how in the Hell you live.” That’s how I would basically sum up/describe eternal security.
“The tendency of the Laodicean age is towards spiritual lethargy. This condition of affairs is so perilous that it carries in its train a looseness of the sin problem that is appalling.”
This is why I’m always hitting on this false doctrine: because it is dangerous. With these reformed people, when they hang on to “once saved, always saved,” as their main doctrine: somewhere in their life there is plenty of looseness, and sin runs rampant…some more than others...but they may put on a good front of dignity in front of the cameras. They’re very good Bible teachers, but they teach false doctrines.
The Ramifications of Falsity:
THE SAD THING IS, they teach this, and people are going to take them serious, and commit all kinds of sins, and they will still think they’re going to go to Heaven.
Now, they don’t usually come right out and say: “you can commit sins,” BUT THEIR WHOLE TEACHING SAYS IT. “ONCE SAVED, ALWAYS SAVED,” MEANS that you can commit any sin in the world, even murder. I have in print, in a book, where they say: “You can commit murder, rape, and theft, and you will still go to Heaven, because you have been elected for Heaven.” Now that’s extreme!
“And more deplorable by far is the fact that among spiritual people, there exists a pernicious and sinister power working overtime to deceive, if possible, the very elect on the sin question...The doctrine of so-called eternal security is so associated with excuses for a sinning religion that the very name is misnomer.”
It says, “The Bible clearly teaches that the mission of Christ to the world is that He shall save His people FROM, NOT IN their sins.” God wants to save us from our sins, not in our sins. They try to place us where we are constantly sinning, and God’s constantly trying to save us. This gives the impression that we can do whatever we want, because we are eternally saved, and those continual sins are immediately blotted out.
“So, where’s the guilt, where’s the problems, we can just live free!”
That’s why they can just have fun and games, that’s why they do what they do (whatever they want!), because they think the Holy Spirit runs around with a big blotter, and every sin that they commit, which is probably a lot—hundreds of thousands of them, He just comes along and blots them all out as they go along to where they:
~ don’t have to repent,
~ don’t have to feel sorry for wrongs committed,
~ can do anything they want,
~ only care about having things their way, not God’s,
~ get in a religious rut, and refuse to move with God,
~ don’t seek deeper experiences with the Lord, because in their mind they have already arrived.
AND THE HOLY SPIRIT’S supposedly just blotting their iniquities out, without them even repenting—because they’re supposedly eternally saved. So, we have a glorified errand boy called “the Holy Spirit” running around blotting out our sins! To me that’s really sick, but that is what they teach. There are some very good Bible teachers out there that believe this, including:
* White, who is a very good apologetic Bible teacher, but he is sold on this 100%.
* R.C. Sproul is another good Bible teacher that’s sold on this.
* John Piper (staunch Calvinist)
* Lewis Chafer, H.A. Ironside, and A.W. Pink seem to have written the most fighting for this fabricated doctrine.
There’s dozens of these theologians and authors that have books and PhD degrees that are up there with the big guys. All reformed people believe “Once saved, always saved.” And they’ll argue until their tongue drops out on the floor that you cannot lose your salvation, even if you commit gross sins.
Do Not Remain in Sin
IN FINISHING UP THIS, he quotes another Scripture, 1 John 3:9: “He that is born of God does not commit sin.” Now, we know this is the King James version again. I love it, but I despise where it makes you think that once you’re born of God, that you cannot commit sin. However, that is not the most accurate translation rendering.
The Amplified version very plainly tells you: “No one born (begotten) of God [DELIBERATELY, KNOWINGLY, AND HABITUALLY] PRACTICES sin, for God's nature abides in him [His principle of life, the divine sperm, remains permanently within him]; and he cannot practice sinning because he is born (begotten) of God.”
It doesn’t say: “you can’t sin,” or “you won’t stumble,” or “you won’t commit error.” But we have met people ourselves that have argued with us: “The Bible says…,” and they’ll point us to that Scripture that “here see! I’m born again, I cannot sin!” So they think they’re perfect, but all they do is sin.
The true rendering of that in your original Greek—the original off the original—the Greek Textus Receptus, ABPolyglot, and the Greek New Testament: Byzantine textform, is meno (#G3306), which goes back to “you don’t willfully or habitually remain in sin.” Thayer’s Definitions conclude it’s precise meaning as:
1. TO REMAIN, ABIDE
1a. in reference to place
1a1. to sojourn, tarry
1a2. NOT TO DEPART
1a2a. to continue to be present
1a2b. to be held, kept, continually
1b. in reference to time
1B1. TO CONTINUE TO BE, NOT TO PERISH, TO LAST, ENDURE
1b1a. of persons, to survive, live
1c. in reference to state or condition
1c1. to remain as one, not to become another or different
2. to wait for, await one
So we see that the definition does not have the implication “it is impossible to sin,” but rather “you don’t ABIDE/REMAIN/CONTINUE TO BE IN sin!”
According to the KJC, other synonyms used are:
• abide, 27 times * abideth, 20 times
• abode, 12 times * dwelleth, 10 times
• remain, 8 times * continue, 7 times
• tarry, 6 times * remaineth, 5 times
• remained, 3 times * tarried, 3 times
• abiding, 2 times * continued, 2 times
• dwell, 2 times * dwelt, 2 times
• endureth, 2 times * continueth, 1 time
• continuing, 1 time * dwellest, 1 time
• enduring, 1 time * present, 1 time
• remaining, 1 time * stand, 1 time
What do you mean ‘willfully’? YOU MEAN YOU HAVE A WILL? Exactly. You have a will. Did you know the word ‘willfully’ comes from your will—free will that does not willfully, out of your will, choose to commit and violate God by sinning—you don’t make a practice of it. It doesn’t say you can’t do it, it says YOU DON’T MAKE A PRACTICE OF IT.
Now, I know when we come in out of sin, and some of us were deeper in sin than others, and worse is, we had some very bad habits. Sometimes those habits are carried over into your Christian life. You’re not perfect when you get saved. Where is this stuff that you can’t sin? I was doing the same things I did as a sinner.
Dirty thoughts. If you were a whoremonger, then your mind was polluted, if you were a homo, your mind was polluted, you were a lesbian, your mind was polluted. You don’t automatically get perfectly clean and never have a dirty thought run through your mind. I’ve never known anybody instantly perfect, but of course people lie about it.
So, from being born again until you die, grace is with you, GRACE HELPS US OVERCOME THOSE THINGS, it helps us with the sin problem. The grace of God fights sin. The grace of God wants us to overcome sin, the grace of God gives us the weaponry to use against sin, just as it did when grace helped us in salvation, through faith. Grace has helped us all the steps of the way to overcome these filthy things and to prevail, and persevere, and overcome.
“HE THAT OVERCOMETH...he that overcometh.” Do you think there’s a reason why “He that overcometh” is stated 8 times in the book of Revelation? “He that overcometh” is promised:
1. The tree of life/Paradise of God
2. Everlasting life
3. Eat of hidden manna/A new name
4. Power over the nations
5. Clothed in white/He’ll confess our name to the Father
6. To be a pillar/Place in God’s temple
7. Sit with Jesus
8. Inherit all things/Be His son/daughter
“What do you mean ‘overcome’? What have I got to overcome if I’m eternally saved?”
WE’VE GOT TO OVERCOME, and to overcome, we must fight, hence, we are exercising our free will to do that. Unfortunately, the church has stopped fighting, even those that are against the false “once saved, always saved” doctrine just stop fighting, and are “enjoying sin.”
All right, “he that committeth willful sin is of the devil,” and “as long as we are on this side of eternity, the choicest and most devout Christians will make mistakes and err in judgment, in conscience, and have shortcomings from time to time, even when we seek to copy after the perfect pattern of the Master.” He’s saying the same thing that I just told you—we’re all going to have problems until/unless we keep moving, keep going ahead, and overcome. Amen.
Such a little word...
I WOULD SUGGEST you write for my 20 part teaching series entitled “We Are Called” (free upon request) that goes from Genesis to Revelations exploring that little two-letter word “if”—“if you do this,” “if you do that,” “if you…”
The word “if” is used 1,595 times in the King James version! That is a lot of times. People who advocate the doctrine that “all the Bible is about is love!” should realize that even the word “love” is only mentioned in the King James version 311 times. Therefore, that would lead us to the correct conclusion that “THE BIBLE IS A BOOK OF IFS!”
“If you do this, I will do this for you.” So, “the ‘if’ clause,” as I call it, goes hand in hand with free will choice, or free will rejection.
Eternal Death/Eternal Life
OK, WE’RE STILL ON ROMANS 5:21 where: “That as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord.” So, sin reigns all the way through death. And the death they’re talking about is not physical death of your body, they’re talking about death in the Biblical sense, that is none other than SEPARATION FROM SALVATION, or separation from eternal salvation; that’s what death is.
Just as death comes upon the living body, when the living body dies, death is the result. The life of that body leaves, and death sets into that body; and with eternal life, grace will do the same—it will reign/overtake all the way through righteousness, by us doing the right things all the way through our Christian life, through Jesus Christ the Lord.
NOW, OUR SALVATION comes as a gift of God’s grace, we know that, and there’s dozens of Scriptures that say that—grace alone, faith alone, Christ alone. But, it can only be appropriated by the human response of faith: if you don’t believe, you cannot receive. However, there is much lack of genuinity in salvation today.
“I’ll give you a bag of rice if you just accept Jesus as your savior!”
We’ve known plenty of rice Christians. If you give them food, they'll accept your religion as long as you feed their stomachs.
They do this all over the world. Don’t you think Jesus knew about the innate desire for food that is in mankind?
“Jesus answered them and said, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Ye seek me, not because ye saw the miracles, but because ye did eat of the loaves, and were filled” (John 6:26).
Though Jesus was a man tested and tempted on all points, knowing the gnawing desire for physical edible substance, He Himself was tempted and overcame on all points.
“But he (Jesus) answered and said, ‘It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God’” (Mat. 4:4).
Moolah to be Muslim$
ON THE OTHER HAND, another temptation is:
“I’ll give you this much money if you forsake Christianity and you become a Muslim.”
Muslims buy Christians, just as we found out when we went to third world countries. If there are Christians, they pay the Christians because Christians sometimes are very poor in Muslim countries. They’ll pay them so much money if they’ll become Muslims. So they become money-Muslims, because they’ve been bought off.
Will We Continue?
NOW, SOME OF THESE POINTS I cover in these Grace teachings, I go in depth on in the teachings I’ve just talked about called: “We Are Called.” I go into all the ‘if’ clauses and responses, and show you that THERE ARE CLAUSES AND OBLIGATIONS ALL THE WAY THROUGH THE BIBLE.
God told Abraham to get out of his country, had not Abraham obeyed that by his free will choice, he would have never got the blessings of God. Had he stayed in there, he would not have got what God promised him (from Hebrews 11:8 on).
In David Brown’s book The Seven Myths of Denominationalism, he expounds:
The only question is: do we allow it (The source of faith/The Word of God) to generate faith in us? If we continue to hear and seek him, it will do just that. If we cut it off and do not diligently seek God, then it will not. Recall Hebrews 11:6: "But without faith [it is] impossible to please [him]: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and [that] he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him."
The source of faith is the proven and confirmed word or God. The effect of faith is to provide substance of the things hoped for. How is this accomplished? the Hebrew writer answers this question in the only way possible: by giving examples. We will not go through all of the examples [including Noah and Abraham], but we urge the reader to read the entire 11th chapter of Hebrews. It defines living faith more effectively than any other explanation could...In every single case faith materialized as "the evidence of things not seen." In every single case it led to OBEDIENCE TO GOD.
SO, EVERYTHING that we go through is by OUR RESPONSE (obedience). So there’s no such thing as this “once saved, always saved” garbage doctrine. Every step of the way—from beginning to end, has to do with “IF.”
Will we? or won’t we? If we will respond to God, we get God’s blessing, if we don’t, then we won’t get His blessing. I try to point this out, but people don’t know what to make of it, because it’s so plain.
Savior, then Lord
NOW, WHEN YOU’RE TALKING about saving faith, you’re saved by grace through faith alone, not of works. Faith in Jesus Christ is the only condition God requires for salvation—you don’t have to believe in anything else, you don’t have to believe in yourself, you don’t have to believe in your goodness—because you don’t have any. Faith is not only a profession about Christ, but also, an activity in the Christian, or the heart of the believer who seeks to follow Christ as Lord and Savior.
I would say: “follow Christ as savior and Lord.” You’re saved, He’s your savior, and then He should become your Lord. A lot of people say, “He’s my savior,” but what about Him being your Lord? They’re afraid to mention “Lord,” because “Lord” means “Master,” and they don’t want to be mastered over, so they keep Him as only the Savior:
“I’m saved, I’m always saved, don’t be the Lord of my life, because if you are the Lord of my life, you’re going to tell me how to live my life!”
So they leave the Lordship out of Christianity today. Very few people talk about Lord, or Savior and Lord.
“AND BAPTISM, which is a figure [of their (Noah and the eight souls’) deliverance], does now also save you [from inward questionings and fears], not by the removing of outward body filth [bathing], but by [providing you with] the answer of a good and clear conscience (inward cleanness and peace) before God [because you are demonstrating what you believe to be yours] through the resurrection of Jesus Christ” (1 Pet. 3:21, Amp.).
“And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance” (Acts 2:4).
“I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire...” (Mat. 3:11).
And if you’re like me, and others, then you talk about He’s your baptizer. Not just in water only, but baptized in the Holy Spirit—He’s our baptizer, he’s our sanctifier, He is our gift-giver, He’s our healer, He’s our deliverer, He’s all those things, and grace works in all those areas.
More Scriptures to Study:
“AND HE SAITH UNTO THEM, Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men” (Mat. 4:19).
“Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me” (Matt. 16:24).
“And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me. For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: but whosoever will lose his life for my sake, the same shall save it. For what is a man advantaged, if he gain the whole world, and lose himself, or be cast away?” (Luke 9:23-25).
“And when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice...My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me...” (John 10:4, 27).
“If any man serve me, let him follow me; and where I am, there shall also my servant be: if any man serve me, him will my Father honour” (John 12:26).
“These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb” (Revelations 14:4).
Now, this is a Bible study, and this is for people that want to get in and really learn this, that’s why I’m quoting these Scriptures to you—to be Biblically correct, not politically correct.
That’s what this “once saved, always saved” is basically—politically correct: “you’re saved no matter how in the Hell you live, even if you live worse than Hell.” But people who do not repent will experience the real burning fires of Hell for eternity: that’s scary.
“They’re slick, they’re convincing, they’re almost divine.”
BUT THEY’RE TEACHING heretical things, like you can live like Hell and go to Heaven, making light of the sin issue. Some are more conscientious of it than others, some will let it slip like R.C. Sproul, he’s an older, very dignified gentleman, but he says: “We shouldn’t commit these sins.” Others don’t even mention the word “sin,” because they don’t even care about the sin issue.
But, the older guys realize after years of looking back in retrospect, that the church has been laid waste with sin. Churches are full of sinners, full of porn addicts, full of adulterers, homosexuals, and creeps crawling everywhere; they’re full of it because of their teachings. Author of 40 books, 4 or 5 degrees, well-known: radio shows, television shows, dignitaries, but they’re teaching this ridiculous stuff. And then they look back they say: “Oh my God! what have I taught?”
Reviewing Faith ABC’s
A. FAITH MEANS FIRMLY BELIEVING and trusting in the crucified and risen Lord, or Christ, as our personal saviour and Lord;
Now, the Emergent Church people, and especially Brian McLaren, hate that. He says “Jesus, Savior of what?,” and “Savior of who?” he mocks all those concepts.
Well, JESUS IS MY PERSONAL SAVIOR, and some people get urped at that: “What do you mean personal? It’s all-inclusive, God saves everybody, you’re not just singled out!” No, I’m singled out, and if I want to use the word “election” in the right sense—that God elected me for salvation, I believe that to be factual, because I was called to be saved: we all are. But, it was MY RESPONSE that got me saved. God didn’t just drag me out of the world and say: “You’re saved Jim Green, you’re saved, you be good now.”
“FOR THEREIN is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith,” (Romans 1:17) involves believing from our hearts
“And Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God” (Acts 8:37).
“But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you” (Romans 6:17).
“Not with eyeservice, as menpleasers; but as the servants of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart..” (Ephesians 6:6).
“Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; for he is faithful that promised...” (Hebrews 10:22-23).
Don’t you just love these Scriptures? When you hear some of these guys, they stick with their pet Scriptures, and they never mention some of these others that I’m mentioning here: they totally avoid these, but stick with their pet ones, it seems that reinforces their beliefs.
Yielding Our Wills
WHEN YOU GOT SAVED, when I got saved, did you not yield up your will? You have to. Unless you’re in one of these funny churches where they have a puppet show and that stupid kind of stuff. Or, you’re in one of these more dignified churches where you raise your hand, and that means you’re saved. What happened to the days when people were running up to the altar screaming out their sins and repenting right there in front of everybody? Are you afraid of something, or are you embarrassed?
But, Yielding up our wills, is committing our total selves to Jesus Christ, as He is revealed in the New Testament. I’ll stop right there, but in my next message “By Grace, Part 3,” I’m going to get into some of these other elements on points A, B, C, and D.
Yielding our wills up is something that the Calvinists literally hate. They say,
“You don’t have a choice in the matter, you don’t have a will in the matter, you cannot exercise anything because you’re so damned depraved you can’t get saved.”
As reviewed in other teachings, their philosophy lies in the deranged TULIP acronym:
P-Perseverance of the saint
Free Will Power
THE FACT IS, that you cannot save yourself. But they’re telling us that: “you can’t even respond to the Gospel until God saves you, then when you’re saved, THEN you can get saved.” That confusion is exactly what their writings say. That is miserably insane—God saves me that I can now, because I have Him in my life, make that right choice with my will. But before that, I’m so depraved because of sin, that I cannot even exercise my will.
Well, I tell these guys: “Look around at what sinners have done, look at the intricate things, the huge cities they have built, all from their own will! Sinners have done these great things by their will...but when it comes to accepting Jesus: ‘Oooh, I can’t do it, I can’t say it, I just can’t come out with save me Lord.’” According to them, you can’t even confess Jesus is your Lord, unless you’re saved.
DO YOU HAVE THE POWER of God in you to commit sins? Is the Holy Ghost making you commit all those sins that you do? Well, somebody’s doing it. What are you going to do with the sin issue once you’re a Christian? Well, some big people are bemoaning the fact: “I’ve labored 25-30 years building this huge mega-church, but I have done nothing, look at these people, they’re not even saved.”
Bill Herbals is one that made that confession several years ago. He had the biggest mega-church in America. He said: “After all this is done, my God, look what I’ve done! These people are not even saved, they’re not even serving the Lord.” He was playing the nice guy, seeker-friendly, never presenting Christ as Savior. Garbage! and look what he got in return for all those years, HE HAD TO ADMIT THAT HIS LABORS WERE ALL IN VAIN.
In closing, let’s look at some things that a preacher/pastor should be quizzed upon:
“Q. How shall we try those who think they are moved by the Holy Ghost to preach?
1. Do they know God as a pardoning God? Have they the love of God abiding in them? Do they desire and seek nothing but God? And are they holy in all manner of conversation?
2. Have they gifts, as well as grace, for the work? Have they, in some tolerable degree, a clear, sound understanding? Have they a right judgment in the things of God? Have they a just conception of salvation by faith? And has God given them any degree of utterance? Do they speak justly, readily, clearly?
3. Have they fruit? Are any truly convinced of sin, and converted to God, by their preaching? "As long as these three marks concur in any one, we believe he is called of God to preach. These we receive as sufficient proof that he is moved thereto by the Holy Ghost” (ibid, Watson).