I apologize, for I thought I had given you this 2 months ago! Col 1:22-23 • "He has reconciled in the body of His flesh through death, to present you holy, and blameless, and above reproach in His sight — if indeed you continue in the faith, grounded and steadfast, and are not moved away from the hope of the gospel" 1 Cor 15:1-2 • "Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received and in which you stand, by which also you are saved, if you hold fast that word which I preached to you — unless you believed in vain." Gal 1:1-4 • "O foolish Galatians! … Did you receive the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith? Are you so foolish? Having begun in the Spirit, are you now being made perfect by the flesh? Have you suffered so many things in vain — if indeed it was in vain?" Phil 2:12-16 • "… work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure. … that you may (not will) become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault … holding fast the word of life, so that I may (not will) rejoice in the day of Christ that I have not run in vain or labored in vain." Truly, I must spell it out: Doing something “in vain” means doing something which was a waste of time and effort. Heb 2:1-4 • "Therefore we must give the more earnest heed to the things we have heard, lest we drift away. For if the word spoken through angels proved steadfast, and every transgression and disobedience received a just reward, how shall we escape if we neglect so great a salvation …?" Heb 10:36-39 • "For you have need of endurance, so that after you have done the will of God, you may receive the promise: “For yet a little while, and He who is coming will come and will not tarry. Now the just shall live by faith; but if anyone draws back, My soul has no pleasure in him.” But we are not of those who draw back to perdition, but of those who believe to the saving of the soul." Oh, really? Then why is Paul talking about it? Because the potential is there. Paul always tactfully encourages and often stretches the truth. 1 Tim 4:16 • "Take heed to yourself and to the doctrine. Continue in them, for in doing this you will save both yourself and those who hear you." Jude 1:20-21 • "But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit, keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life." 1 Pet 1:5-9 • "… the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may (not will) be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ … receiving the end of your faith — the salvation of your souls." Alas, the end is not the beginning; beginning faith does not produce salvation, ending faith does. 1 Tim 6:9-14 • "But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and harmful lusts which drown men in destruction and perdition (i.e. hell). For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. But you, O man of God, flee these things and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, gentleness. Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, to which you were also called … I urge you in the sight of God who gives life to all things, and before Christ Jesus … that you keep this commandment without spot, blameless until our Lord Jesus Christ’s appearing" Tactfully as usual, we are shown how some fail to lay hold onto eternal life. Rev 2:10 • "Indeed, the devil is about to throw some of you into prison, that you may (will) be tested, and you will have tribulation ten days. Be faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life." James 1:12-15 • "Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him. … But each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed. Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death." Enduring in the faith includes enduring temptation to sin; here it is connected with eternal life. Do a study and you will find it means the crown of eternal life. Because of the above verses … -- Christians see the following passages as having a double-meaning: Matt 10:22, Mark 13:13, Matt 24:13 • "But he who endures to the end (of his life) will be saved." -- Eternal life is actually granted (or denied) some time after one dies! Paul’s verses about the necessity of the athlete to finish the race in order to receive the prize parallels the above passages about believers enduring in faith until the very end for salvation. .