I hope it is clear to everyone who has been following any of these threads that I am most definitely NOT Calvinist. I hope it is also just as clear that I am most definitely NOT Arminian. In the Calvinism and Belief thread, a recent post spoke about falling away and the possibility of losing salvation. The question was asked what does falling away mean if not losing salvation and why so many admonishments to keep the faith and run the race that we see in the New Testament. To the Arminian, or those not believing that salvation is not only now but eternal for the believer, I would caution against trying to combine the concept of salvation with the concept of rewards, or crowns, which can be earned by the saved. At the end of Psalm 1 we see that the wicked will not stand in the judgment. Now, ait is obvious that whatever judgment this is, the wicked will not be there and that there will be some kind of judgment of only the righteous. The righteous are, by definition in the Bible, those whose names are written in the Book of Life. We refer to them as 'believers' in Christian terminology. It is this judgment of the righteous, where the wicked cannot even attend, that has to do with rewards earned. It is for this that the believer is told to run the race, keep the faith, don't fall away. Can a believer fall away so as to lose his or her salvation? Christ is the Good Shepherd. If you belong to His flock you are still a sheep, but His. Sheep wander. Sheep get into trouble. Sheep get cast (a life threatening thing where the sheep has laid down in a hollow of ground and cannot get up again, or the wool is so thick and perhaps soggy that it cannot get up again. This produces intestinal problems that can quickly be lethal). Christ said clearly He will go after any sheep that wanders. So yes, a sheep of His flock can certain fall away from the herd and go wandering -- almost always to its own harm in one way or another. But that wandering does not escape either the eye or rescue of the Good Shepherd, to whom that sheep still belongs. I'm using only references the Bible uses here, nothing made up. Once a person is born again in the Lord, tht person cannot become unborn or pass from that life to death. Christ has not lost one. There is a verse Barry pointed out to me in reference to this which is the last verse of John 3: Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God's wrath remains on him. To the Arminian: in the first part of the sentence, both 'believes' and 'has' are in the present tense. Salvation is now and it is forever, for it is eternal life, not part-time eternal life! To the Calvinist: God's wrath remains on those who reject the Son. It is, since the cross, not a matter of sinning, but a matter of believing or rejecting Christ, just as Christ Himself also stated in John 3:16-18.