Once saved, always saved?

Discussion in '2000-02 Archive' started by Grammy1013, Sep 18, 2002.

  1. Grammy1013

    Grammy1013
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    This may have been (and most likely probably was) discussed here before ... but bear with me, I'm new.

    I'd be very interested in hearing some 'debates' on the issue "once saved, always saved". I was taught to belive this in the IB church where I met the Lord and got saved.

    Can anyone verify this (with scripture) or prove it wrong (with scripture)?
     
  2. Ransom

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    Read Rom. 8:28-39; Phil 1:6; Heb. 12:2.

    Salvation starts with God; he is faithful to finish what he started, and no man can scuttle his plans. It's as simple as that.
     
  3. KeeperOfMyHome

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    One of my favorite verses about the eternal security of the believing (which, I think, is a better term to use to descibe "once saved, always saved") is John 10:28: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.

    Jesus himself said that He gives me life perpetual, continuing without intermission, and existing at all times!

    If my salvation could be cut off for some reason or another, this would make Jesus a liar.

    Jesus also said I'll never perish. This is just a way of saying I'll never die! My body might become just a bag of bones, but I will live forever!

    I am already living forever! I just happen to be temporarily stationed here on earth! Praise the Lord!

    Julia
     
  4. Rev. G

    Rev. G
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    I agree with Ransom. Salvation commences with God, is sustained by God, and is forever secured by God.

    I would like to add a twist to this discussion, though. Is there a difference between "once saved, always saved", and "perseverance and preservation of the saints."

    Often "o.s.a.s." is taught in this manner:
    - you make a profession of faith
    - after making a profession you are "saved"
    - you are "saved" regardless of how you live

    The other position, "p.a.p.", teaches that:
    - a profession is not to be equated w/ faith
    - a profession of faith is not the same as "possession" of faith
    -a person who has truly trusted Christ WILL be preserved by God and cannot be lost, and that same individual will persevere in his/her faith (growing in godliness, etc.)

    It is my opinion that the first (o.s.a.s.) is rampant in Baptist churches, but that it is unbliblical. The Scriptures teach the second. Thus, apostasy is a reality (those who once professed faith "fall away", but they were never truly converted. See 1 John 1:9).

    Thoughts? Opinions? Old war stories?

    Rev. G
     
  5. RomOne16

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    I am a member of a church that teaches OSAS. They are also very much into counting souls. I believe many of the 'salvations' they have racked up do not represent true conversions, and that really bothers me. How many people are told they are "saved" when they really aren't?

    I look forward to any replies you get to your post, as I am very interested to read others views on this.
     
  6. tyndale1946

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    I am also O.S.A.S. and believe in the eternal security of the sons and daughters of God. How can you fall away from Eternal Salvation? Can the devil take away that, that our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ paid for with his precious blood on the cross of Calvary?

    We may lose the joy of that salvation here in time but we can never lose what God has given us eternal life. All the Salvation of Gods children are in his hands and as the scripture state he will not lose a one no matter what our doctrinal beliefs are. That is how amazing, Amazing Grace really is to those who really see and understand it... Brother Glen [​IMG]
     
  7. BrianT

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    Most here know by now that I'm "not yet convinced" about eternal security. [​IMG] Let me ask a simple question - I did something to get saved: I believed. I was saved by God's grace, through faith. What if I stop believing, what if I reject the faith? How is God's grace extended to me if not through my faith?
     
  8. BrianT

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    This is an interesting idea, I'll have to give it some more thought. This difference may account for my confusion. [​IMG]

    One question: for the second type, you say the individual will persevere. To me, this sounds like they have no choice but to persevere. Why then does scripture exhort saints to persevere if they have no choice in the first place?
     
  9. BrianT

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    Maybe you've sensed I've been avoiding discussing this with you. [​IMG] I have. :D But what do you think is going on in Luke 8:13, where the people "received" and "believed", and even grew, before falling away? Can one receive the word, believe the word, and grow in the word and not be saved?
     
  10. Grammy1013

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    In Luke 8:13, I don't think Jesus is talking about someone who has 'grown', as they are on a rock and have no roots. And as far as believing the word and not being saved, the devils believe, don't they?
     
  11. Grammy1013

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    Rev. G,

    I'm glad you said "often" when telling how OSAS is taught. It wasn't taught that way in my church.

    (Your post is actually bringing back memories of various teachings our pastor gave on this subject ... thanks for that. I tend to have too many 'senior moments' these days [​IMG] )

    Our pastor taught OSAS, but with a PAP post script, as in "we are known by our fruits".
     
  12. Rev. G

    Rev. G
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    Grammy:

    Sounds like your pastor had it right. :D

    In the parable of the soils Jesus speaks about the "response" each of the four soils (hearers) had to the seed (the Word of God). It is only the soil (hearer) who "bears fruit" that has really received the seed (Word). The shallow hearer receives the Word "with gladness", yet when particular circumstances arise such a hearer "falls away." There was never true salvation in that case.

    As one concerned greatly about the task of evangelism, I fear that we often give a false sense of assurance. We tell people they are "saved" when we have absolutely no idea whether or not they are. We act as though a "profession" of faith equals possession of faith.

    In my own denomination, the Southern Baptist Convention, we boast 16 million members, yet in our own polls we have found that only about 5.3 million are "active" in their attendance. Something is wrong there! That is in conflict with "Perseverance / Preservation of the Saints".

    Rev. G
     
  13. Mark Osgatharp

    Mark Osgatharp
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    I have been around Baptists 41 years and I have never heard anyone preach or teach that a "profession of faith" is the same thing as faith. To the contrary, I've always heard it taught that there is a difference between "profession and posession."

    The person who does posess faith is eternally secure, having been born of God. The only part man has in being born again is to believe on the Lord (John 3:16). Therefore those who preach that "believing" is all that is required to be saved preach the absolute truth.

    The man who, having believed in Christ, has been born again should grow in grace but does not necessarily do so. Backsliding is a real possibility for the true believer. See I Timothy chapter five.

    Preservation of the saints is the work of God. Therefore we can believe in "once saved always saved" with all our hearts.

    Perseverance of the saints is a Christian duty which, unfortunately, not all saints fulfill.

    Mark Osgatahrp
     
  14. Rev. G

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    With Baptists it is often implied rather than explicitly taught. I guess I should qualify this statement. For Southern Baptists it is often implied rather than explicitly taught.

    What kind of belief is required? I think this is a legitimate question. See James 2. Even the demons believe, and they tremble. That is not to say that they are redeemed, however. That is James' whole point. Faith without works is DEAD.

    The issue of profession and possession has much to do with the issue of "Lordship Salvation", does it not? While I do not believe that that term is a good one, it is the one generally used so I'll use it. This viewpoint stresses that true faith is demonstrated by works. It does not state that every believer is perfect and without sin. Rather, some produce fruit that is thirty-fold, some sixty, and some one-hundred. The thing is, there IS "fruit".

    This is quite different from merely believing facts about God / Christ / the cross, etc.

    Rev. G
     
  15. Mark Osgatharp

    Mark Osgatharp
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    Rev. G,

    Faith is a matter of "believing" a certain set of facts about the Lord. There is, however, a difference between knowing the Bible says these things and "believing" them with our heart. The difference is the difference between knowledge and trust.

    The core issues here are:

    1. "Can a true believer backslide?"

    2. "If a true believer backslides, does he lose his salvation?"

    The answer to the first question is, yes. Though I could give numerous Scriptures to prove this, I Timothy chapter 5 alone gets the job done.

    The answer to the second question is, no. See John chapters 3, 4, 6, 10 as well as Ephesians chapter 1, Romans chapter 8, and I John chapters 3 and 5.

    I might add this one thing; I can understand how an unlearned person would read certain Scriptures to teach "falling from grace." I cannot, however, conceive how anyone could read the Bible and come up with "perseverance of the saints." There are just too many passages which warn beleivers against backsliding and give examples of it to maintain that it cannot happen.

    Mark Osgatharp
     
  16. Rev. G

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    Mark:

    What in the world are you saying? The doctrine of the perseverance of the saints is the historical doctrine within the Church of "once saved, always saved" (using this term loosely) - the saints persevere, they do not fall away, because they are being preserved by God.

    Do the demons believe that Jesus is God? Do they believe that He is human? Do they believe that He was born of a virgin? Do they believe He is sinless? Do they believe that He died on the cross for sinners? Do they believe that He rose from the dead? Yes, they believe all those things. They know them to be true and real. That is why they tremble. They still are not saved.

    Saving faith consists of three things:
    1) recognition and understanding of truth;
    2) intellectual assent to the truth;
    3) the dimension of trust.

    "Many believed in His name when they saw the signs which He did. But Jesus did not commit Himself to them, because He knew all men, and had no need that anyone should testify of man, for He knew what was in man." - John 2:23-24

    "Then Simon himself also believed; and when he was baptized he continued with Philip. . . . Peter said to him, 'Your money perish with you, because you thought that the gift of God could be purchased with money! You have neither part nor portion in this matter, for your heart is not right in the sight of God.'" - Acts 8:13, 20-21
    * Simon Magus is known in Church History as the "Father of Gnosticism." He claimed to be the Messiah. He had a number of followers, but lost them all when he claimed that he was going to ascend to heaven. He climbed a high building and jumped, believing that he would ascend. Gravity prevailed.

    Rev. G

    [ September 19, 2002, 01:41 AM: Message edited by: Rev. G ]
     
  17. Mark Osgatharp

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    Rev. G,

    Jesus Christ said that "whosoever believeth in him should not perish but have ever lasting life." And He said that "whosoever believeth" will "not come into condemnation but is passed from death unto life."

    Therefore, every believer - I do not say every professor, but every believer - has everlasting life. The Bible explicitly says that Simon "believed also and was baptized." It didn't say he "professed also and got wet." It says, "Simon himself believed also and was baptized."

    Practically speaking, Simon was, just as you and I were after our salvation, bound by the flesh and therefore had to learn right from wrong. But for you to argue that Simon was only a "professor" flies in the face of God's word.

    If by "perseverance" you mean perseverance in saving trust in Christ, then I heartily agree. Once a believer, always a believer.

    But if by "perseverance" you mean that a true believer will always persevere in well doing, that is one of the most ridiculous philosophies I have ever heard. The Bible speaks repeatedly of believers who erred from the faith. It warns us continually about falling away from good works and faithfulness.

    Take, for example, this warning in Hebrews:

    "Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God. But exhort one another daily, while it is called To day; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast unto the end."

    A man has to willfully close his eyes to contrue that this passage is written to unbelievers. If it teaches anything about "how to get eternal life" it teaches salvation by perseverance as well as the possibility of a saint being lost in the end.

    However, when we understand that RIGHT LIVING and not ETERNAL LIFE is the subject of the discussion, we undertand that the scripture does not teach that a saint can be lost, but does teach that a saint can backslide and fail to partake of the blessing of Christ in his life.

    By the way, did you read I Timothy chapter 5? If so, how do you reconcile Paul's statements about backsliding young widows with your theory of "perseverance of the saints."

    Mark Osgatharp
     
  18. hrhema

    hrhema
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    I am amazed about how many people will take where Jesus was praying to the Father about his apostles and make a doctrine out of it by saying he was praying about all future believers. Anyone can read it and see that when he said no one can pluck them out of his hand he was talking about the 11 for he went on to pray about Judas.
    This scripture does not teach once saved always saved.

    When the words eternal life is used it is not a guarantee. I have not found one scripture that guarantees us eternal life just because we are believers until we overcome. Jesus said many times in Revelation "To Those who overcome&gt;"
    Why would Jesus talk about overcoming if this was not a part of living for God.

    So many people have a wrong belief about works.
    Works has nothing to do with living right. Works has nothing to do with sin. Works is exActly what it states, WORKS.

    Going to church, teaching a sunday school class.
    Teaching a bible study. Singing in the choir. Playing a musical instrument. THESE ARE EXAMPLES OF WORKS.

    Jesus said if we love him we keep his commandments. John wrote the same things. We are given a list of sins we are not to commit by Paul. Yet when anyone begins talking about living right or obeying commandments then automatically people who believe OSAS starts hollering LEGALISM.

    It seems to me there are way too many people who use OSAS as an excuse for a license to live in sin. This is what originally drove me away from Baptist churches when I was a kid watching deacons and their behavior. Watching them go outside and light up a cigarette or go to their cars and get a can of beer to drink after church. Listening to their cussing and talking about the women like they were street prostitutes. Yet these men firmly believed when they died they were going to Heaven. I have a major problem with that.

    I have wondered if maybe this is what Blasphemy of the Holy Ghost is. We take Gods grace and Jesus' sacrifice for granted or with contempt.

    God demanded Israel to be a Holy Nation and when they sinned they were judged but Christians use grace to say they don't have to be or live Holy but the Bible says God does not change.

    What I have read by so many people is that God is going to force people to serve him. To me this makes God impotent if he has to force people to love him and serve him by predestination.

    Does the scripture Many are Called but few chosen prove pre-destination. NO. The spirit woos many but they never respond. God chooses those who respond to his spirits wooing.

    You have to take all scriptures and fit them together to come up with the truth. You have one scripture that says the Father draws then you have Jesus own words that seem to contradict the other scripture but it really does not. Jesus said that "If I be lifted up from the Earth, I will draw ALL men unto me." If you take this scripture as a lot of those who believe OSAS does then it would mean all are going to be saved because Jesus said he would draw ALL MEN. Yet this scripture conflicts with predestination because those who believe this doctrine believe only a certain elect will be saved but that is not what Jesus said. The Bible also says that God is not willing for ANY TO PERISH but ALL SHOULD COME TO REPENTANCE. Well again this knocks predestination in the head. Yet we know not all will be saved.

    I don't believe God takes away salvation because a person commits a sin or two sins because we do have an advocate with the Father where we can ask for forgiveness.

    I believe an person can walk away from serving God and become apostate and I believe that person was saved. It it too convenient that those who believe in OSAS will say the person was never saved in the first place because you cannot see the heart of that person so how would you know.
     
  19. BrianT

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    The first seeds fell on the path, and were trodden and eaten by birds before they grew. However, the seeds here (and the seeds among the thorns) did indeed grow (Luke 8:6-7)

    Salvation is not offered to the devils, Christ didn't die for the devils. In the same parable about the seeds, notice this:

    Luke 8:12 Those by the way side are they that hear; then cometh the devil, and taketh away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved.

    Does this not say that if they would have believed, they would have been saved? I think it does. And in the next verse we see:

    Luke 8:13 They on the rock are they, which, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, which for a while believe, and in time of temptation fall away.

    Believing in regards to salvation is taught in the following passages:

    Act 15:11 But we believe that through the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ we shall be saved, even as they.

    Act 16:31 And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.

    Rom 10:9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

    So for the seeds on the rock, "which for a while believe", how am I supposed to not understand this as saying "which for a while were saved"? Where did they "fall away" from?

    So is Luke 8:13 wrong is saying those on the rock "received" it as well? Rev G., I understand what you are saying, for only the "soil" seeds bore fruit. But what if one stops bearing fruit? We are told numerous places that tree that does not bear fruit will be cut down. And John 15:4 tells us we cannot bear fruit unless we "abide": "Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me." Abiding, by definition, is an ongoing action. One must remain. And if it is impossible NOT to abide/remain, then Christ's encouragement to abide seems pointless. And lastly, Jude 1:12 talks about those whose fruit withered, and what happens to them. If their fruit withered, then that means at one point they were bearing fruit.
     
  20. Scott J

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    Actually, in context, verse 16 makes it clear that this scripture does apply to all of the sheep belonging to the one Shepherd. Context is everything in this discussion. Read in context, the Bible supports perseverance of the saints. The notion that someone can be genuinely saved then lost again can only be supported by isolating short passages from their context and the overall context of the Bible.
     

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