Do those who oppose Once Saved Always Saved deceive and frustrate young, struggling believers (new converts)?
That is not how the first-century Christians felt about new converts. Back in that era, the servants of God felt truth and sound doctrine were imperative to spiritual growth, regardless if one was a new convert or not (1 Pet. 2:2; Acts 20:32). Since the Bible clearly teaches a conditional security, then this is what all Christians need to be taught, as was the case back then.
The book of Hebrews was written to Christians who were struggling and needed to be taught certain basic truths all over again (Heb. 5:11,12; 12:12). That book is filled with passages that refute Once Saved Always Saved. Therefore, such teaching isn’t a hindrance to any Christian, but an obvious remedy and aid, according to this book and Scriptures found elsewhere.
Specifically, Paul let Timothy know that especially new converts were in spiritual danger by getting in the office of overseer. Such a violation could lead to their damnation (1 Tim. 3:6). Obviously, such information about the believer’s conditional security couldn’t be detrimental, but beneficial for one to know.
And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account (Heb. 4:13).
For He knows the secrets of the heart (Psa. 44:21).
You have set our iniquities before You, our secret sins in the light of Your countenance (Psa. 90:8).
The sins of some men are obvious … the sins of others trail behind them (1 Tim. 5:24V).
You cannot sin and get away with it! No one ever has: Adam and Eve (Gen. 3:16-19), Cain (Gen. 4:8-16), Nadab and Abihu (Lev. 10:1,2), Miriam (Num. 12:1-15), Korah, Dathan and Abiram (Num. 16:23-35), Israel (Num. 25:1-3; etc.), Achan (Josh. 7:1-24), Hophni and Phinehas (1 Sam. 2:12-35), Solomon (1 Ki. 11:9-25), Jeroboam (1 Ki. 13:33,34), Ahaziah (2 Ki. 1:2-17), Gehazi (2 Ki. 5:21-27), Saul (1 Chron. 10:13,14), Uzzah (2 Sam. 6:6,7), David (2 Sam. 12:9-14), Judas (Mt. 10:4 cf. Mk. 14:21), Ananias and Sapphira (Acts 5:1-11), some of the Corinthians (1 Cor. 11:17-34), Sodom and Gomorrah (Jude 7), angels (2 Pet. 2:4), etc.
If God did not spare these and others who sinned, he won’t spare you either, even though you are under New Covenant grace. Consider also the following, which was written to first-century Christians:
We must pay more careful attention, therefore, to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away. For if the message spoken by angels was binding, and every violation and disobedience received its just punishment, how shall we escape if we ignore such a great salvation? (Heb. 2:1-3).
Someone who believes in eternal security might say, “I don’t believe in the Catholic view of mortal and venial sins, as apparently you do! As a Once Saved Always Saved proponent, I believe all sins are equal in their severity before God, according to Jam. 2:10.”
Dan Corner’s response is below:
To reject the concept that all sin is equally severe does not automatically make that person a believer in the Catholic view of mortal and venial sins, as you assume! You are trying to discredit a conditional security by associating it with Catholicism. This is the logical fallacy known as guilt by association.
Remember, Scripture clearly teaches there are degrees of sin—greater sin (Jn. 19:11), eternal sin (Mk. 3:29), sin that leads to death and sin that does not lead to death (1 Jn. 5:16). James 2:10 does not contradict these verses! That verse and the one that follows it says:
For whoever shall keep the whole law, and yet stumble in one point, he is guilty of all. For He who said, “Do not commit adultery,” also said, “Do not murder.” Now if you do not commit adultery, but you do murder, you have become a transgressor of the law (Jam. 2:10,11).
James 2:11 goes on to say if a person does not commit adultery but does commit murder he is a lawbreaker. This clearly shows James is talking about those who are lawbreakers in verse 10, and not that all sin is equally severe in its consequences on the soul, as you assume!
Sins of worry and unthankfulness can never be compared in Scripture to sins of adultery and murder! In Rev. 21:8, the latter will send people to the lake of fire while the former are excluded from this list (and all other similar lists in Scripture).
Does the Bible teach Conditional Security or Eternal Security (Once Saved Always Saved)?
Have you ever heard an eternal security adherent use the following argument against a conditional security for the believer? Dan Corner shows how to respond.
There are an equal number of Scriptures that teach Once Saved Always Saved as there are that don’t. Therefore, you can’t be emphatic about a conditional security for the believer.
To believe such a statement implies the Bible contradicts itself. Dear reader, it is absolutely impossible for the Bible to teach both Once Saved Always Saved and a conditional security. One must be wrong!
It is true, however, that Once Saved Always Saved has arguments that seem at first glance to be supported by Scripture, but none of them really are. The Scriptures usually cited for Once Saved Always Saved are either taken out of context (like Jn. 10:28), unrelated to the subject (like Jn. 19:30) or misused in some other way.
The Bible teaches a conditional security for the believer. The sooner people realize this, the sooner they will be set on their spiritual guard to endure to the end for the sake of their salvation (Mt. 10:22; Heb. 3:14; Rev. 2:10,11). Millions of souls may perish without this vital information. Once saved always saved (or eternal security) must be rejected as the licence for immorality that it really is.
Proponents of Once Saved Always Saved theology typically use the following type of logic:
A child cannot become unborn, and the relationship of a father and a child cannot be ended. Once a son, always a son. Therefore, once we are saved we will always be saved. Or as Hal Lindsey wrote:
When you’re born into your earthly family, you may be a winner or a loser in your behavior, but you’re still a member of that family. There’s no way to be unborn just because you don’t measure up to the standards of your family. It’s just the same when you’re born into God’s family. You may be disciplined for wrong behavior, but you won’t be disowned. (The Liberation of Planet Earth, p. 221)
This argument is based on natural fact, then applied to the spiritual, which doesn’t always hold up as truth. (Once Saved Always Saved adherents frequently make this kind of mistake of arguing from the natural to the spiritual.) This type of error can be demonstrated by the following facts: Before we became Christians, we were all “children of the devil” (Acts 13:10; 1 Jn. 3:10) and “sons of the evil one” (Mt. 13:38). In other words, the devil was our spiritual father (Jn. 8:44). However, this spiritual father-child relationship changed at the point of salvation, according to Scripture! Aren’t you glad that spiritual, father-child relationships can be ended?
We are sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus (Gal. 3:26), yet it is possible to stop believing (Lk. 8:13), have our faith destroyed (2 Tim. 2:18) and for our faith to become shipwrecked (1 Tim. 1:19,20).
Also, angels and Adam are called “son(s) of God” (Job 1:6; Lk. 3:38, KJV), yet some angels and Adam lost their eternal life, and we can too as sons of God.
We can’t become unborn, but we can die spiritually (Lk. 15:24,32; Rom. 8:13; Jam. 1:14,15; etc.)! We must endure to the end to be saved (Mt. 10:22).
Finally, Lindsey wrote you won’t be disowned, but Jesus said if we disown him, he will in turn disown us (Mt. 10:33, NIV). Who should we believe?
Excerpt from The Believer’s Conditional Security, Copyright Dan Corner
After citing Revelation 21:8, Zane Hodges comments in his book, The Gospel Under Siege (p. 123):
This is not, of course, salvation by works after all! It is rather a declaration that in the new heavens and the new earth (cf. Rev. 21:1), there are no more cowards, no more idolators, no more liars—except those who have been consigned to the lake of fire!
But what about born again Christians who have done these things? To be specific, what about wise Solomon who ended his life with defection from his God and with idolatry (1 Kings 11:1-10)! The answer is that they will all be in the presence of God as citizens of the eternal world. And whatever their failures on earth may have been, these are gone. If they had been liars, they are liars no more. If idolators, they are idolators no more. For now they are immortal and sinless. They are conformed to the image of God’s Son.
How did they come to this place. By the grace of God.
It’s very disturbing that Zane Hodges would comment on the clear truth of Rev. 21:8 and say it is “not, of course, salvation by works.” One must wonder from this if he is trying to cloud the issue.
Zane Hodges also reveals how he understands works! If one resists sinful temptations as commanded (Jam. 4:7; 1 Pet. 5:9), he is living in accord with Biblical grace (Titus 2:12; 2 Cor. 1:12), not believing in works salvation! If not being sexually immoral, an idolater, liar, etc. was believing works for salvation as suggested, then Paul actually contradicted himself, for he is the one who gave us Eph. 2:8,9 and other passages about such not inheriting the kingdom (1 Cor. 6:9,10; Gal. 5:19-21; Eph. 5:5-7).
The problem here is also the way the Once Saved Always Saved people understand grace. By Hodges’ definition of grace, it should be apparent that he is allowing people into the kingdom (liars and idolaters) whom God clearly stated will be thrown into the lake of fire. This reflects the infinite difference between the grace of Once Saved Always Saved and the grace taught in the Scriptures!
If one would carefully read Rev. 21:1-8, he would see that verses 7 and 8 are contrasting passages describing first the overcomer—those who actually enter the kingdom—and second, those who get thrown into the lake of fire (or the non-overcomer). Verse 8 describes the latter. That passage is very shocking to today’s Once Saved Always Saved gospel, for it does not state that only the unbelieving will be thrown into the lake of fire, as one might expect. In fact, the unbelieving are not even mentioned at the top of the list!
God himself, who knows everything there is to know about grace, his own faithfulness, love and keeping power, etc. spoke these words after the infinite and finished work of Christ on the cross. Along with 1 Cor. 6:9,10, Rev. 21:8 best describes all of those who will spend their eternity, with the devil, in burning sulfur.
Rev. 21:8 is an irreconcilable problem text for all of the Once Saved Always Saved proponents and their grace message, since they believe one can actually do those things after their salvation, never repent, and still not be in the danger that God clearly says they are in! We should not, therefore, be surprised that Rev. 21:8 will be avoided or distorted by the grace changers, through some strange interpretation, because it is so antithetical to Once Saved Always Saved.
Backsliders who desire to draw close to God once again should be encouraged by various passages of Scripture such as the following:
My brothers, if one of you should wander from the truth and someone should bring him back, remember this: Whoever turns a sinner from the error of his way will save him from death and cover over a multitude of sins. (James 5:19-20)
You will say then, “Branches were broken off so that I could be grafted in.” Granted. But they were broken off because of unbelief, and you stand by faith. Do not be arrogant, but be afraid. For if God did not spare the natural branches, he will not spare you either. Consider therefore the kindness and sternness of God: sternness to those who fell, but kindness to you, provided that you continue in his kindness. Otherwise, you also will be cut off. And if they do not persist in unbelief, they will be grafted in, for God is able to graft them in again. (Rom 11:19-23)
Remember that God is faithful to forgive our sins if we confess them.
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. (1 John 1:9)
This must be understood in light of Prov 28:13 which teaches not only to confess sin but to renounce those sins to find mercy.
Examples of backsliders who returned to God are King David and the prodigal son. Others fell away and never came back like Solomon and Judas.
Nearly 2,000 years ago the apostle Paul, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, predicted that the day would yet come when people would not put up with sound doctrine. He wrote to Timothy about this and informed him how to counteract it. This is what he said:
“Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction. For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths” (2 Tim. 4:2-4).
That time is here! Multitudes of people living in our day are not putting up with sound doctrine and there are a great number of teachers saying what itching ears want to hear. The combination of these has resulted in various false doctrines.
But of all such teachings so produced, there is one doctrine in particular that is especially ear tickling, flesh-inciting, scripture-distorting and sin-breeding. This same teaching lulls Christians to sleep, takes them off their spiritual guard, destroys the fear of God, sets them up for a spiritual fall and is very prevalent. It is known under various names. Some call it eternal security, like Charles Stanley. This is how he defines this teaching:
“Listen, eternal security is that work of God by which He guarantees that the gift of salvation once received is, listen, is forever possessed and cannot be lost.
Others in Calvinistic circles call this same teaching the perseverance of the saints, while still others know it as the teaching of once saved, always saved. Reformed teacher, Steve Brown, comments about these different names:
“Very strong, orthodox, fundamental, Bible-believing Christians disagree on the doctrine. The doctrine is called uh, by Baptists, eternal security or once saved always saved. Those of us who are Reformed uh, call it the perseverance of the saints, but we mean the same thing. And the doctrine states that once you’re saved, you’re always saved, that God holds you, that you will persevere to the end.”
The doctrine of once saved always saved can be simply defined, as its name declares, that is, once a person becomes saved, he will always remain saved.
In this message, you will hear actual OSAS teachers offer counsel consistent with this teaching regarding adultery, fornication, alcoholism, pornography, suicide, murder, homosexuality, etc. Brace yourself for some shocking audio quotes from people with a staggering influence in religious circles.
This is a one hour audio message by Dan Corner with actual excerpts from big-name eternal security teachers and our biblical refutation. Very hard hitting and eye-opening.
Will there be worldwide revival as some uninformed people predict? Not according to the Scriptures. The best verse to describe the future devil worship of the religious world is Rev 13:4 which reads:
Men worshiped the dragon because he had given authority to the beast, and they also worshiped the beast and asked, “Who is like the beast? Who can make war against him?”
It will be devil worship because the devil gave authority to the Antichrist! People then will be so depraved they will knowingly worship the devil, who empowers the Antichrist. They will also worship the Antichrist, which is idolatry. The future doesn’t include a worldwide revival, but a society which is so sinful it is shocking compared to what we now know!
Rev 13:5,6 describes the frightening antichrist as proud and blasphemous, even slandering God and those in heaven. The most disturbing verse in the Bible regarding end times and the Christian is Rev 13:7:
He was given power to make war against the saints and to conquer them. And he was given authority over every tribe, people, language and nation.
According to Rev 13:10 the saints will still be here, having not been raptured as many falsely hoped:
If anyone is to go into captivity, into captivity he will go. If anyone is to be killed with the sword, with the sword he will be killed. This calls for patient endurance and faithfulness on the part of the saints.
Captivity or death are the two possible fates of the saints, who must endure to the end of their lives (Mt 10:22) and be faithful to the Lord Jesus. Rev 12:11 tells at that point how to do this.
They overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death.
For more information on the important subject of end times and the Antichrist, please listen to the audio message below by Dan Corner, Director of Evangelical Outreach and visit his informative evangelical website for Biblically solid information regarding the Mark of the Beast and Antichrist.