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doveraven02In our last message, a reader was sending me passages that he thought called into question the idea of eternal security, or that once you are saved, you are always saved. This time, he continues with yet more passages.

Reader: “For those *who live according to the flesh* set their *minds on the things of the flesh*, but those *who live according to the Spirit* set their minds *on the things of the Spirit*.  To set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace.  For the mind that is set on the flesh is *hostile* to God, for it does not *submit* to God’s law; indeed, it cannot.  Those who are in the flesh cannot please God.  You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit,* if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you.*  Anyone who *does not have* the  Spirit of Christ *does not belong* to him.”  -Romans 8:5-9 [ESV]

If a person does not submit to God, then they cannot humble themselves to God, who yearns jealously over their Spirit.  And God will give grace to the humble but to the scornful, he is scornful (Proverbs 3:34, James 4:6).  If a person sets his mind on the flesh, it seems that he cannot please God, and everything that we do without Jesus is worthless.

Romans was the last book written in the Acts period. It has many things to say about salvation, many of which still apply today. Some of the things in Romans are definitely focused upon the Acts period, however.

One who has the Spirit of Christ belongs to Him. This Spirit was granted to all Acts period believers. Signs followed all who believed, as Mark 16:15-18 clearly sets forth. Anyone who had no Spirit and no signs was not a true believer. These things do not apply to today. Though we do receive the Spirit when we believe, He seals us, but not in an open and demonstrable way, as was done in the Acts period.

I do not see that these verses have anything to do with duration of salvation. One either here has a mind set on the flesh or on the things of the Spirit. The mind set on the flesh is death, and the mind set on the Spirit is life. Those who are in the flesh cannot please God, but those who are in the Spirit can please Him. We receive the Spirit by being and believing in Jesus Christ, and the record God gave of Him. Therefore, it is possible for us to please Him if we set our minds on the things of the Spirit. This is what we should do. This is what we are expected to do. This passage has nothing to say about the consequences if we do not do this, however. Read the rest of this entry »

infinity01In our last message, a reader was sending me passages that he thought called into question the idea of eternal security, or that once you are saved, you are always saved. This time, he continues with yet more passages.

Reader: I hope you’re not getting annoyed.  But I have a little bit more.

No, that’s fine! I’m happy to answer your questions.

“Whoever *believes* in the Son *has eternal life*; whoever *does not obey*the Son *shall not see life*, but *the wrath of God remains* on him.”  -John 3:36

Here it seems to be very clear that there is a connection between believing (taking God at his Word and acting accordingly) and receiving eternal life, and then, not obeying God and His wrath remaining on the person.

The translation of apeitheo by “not obey” seems questionable to me. Yet to translate it “not believe,” as the New King James does, makes it out as if it is the same word for “believe” again as earlier in the verse, which it is not. The word seems to have to do with the response of faith. That is, one who knows the truth because he has been informed of it, and yet who refuses to act upon it. Such a person is “apeitheo.” If you want to, you can check it out for yourself. Read the rest of this entry »

In our last message, a reader was sending me passages that he thought called into question the idea of eternal security, or that once you are saved, you are always saved. This time, he continues with yet more passages.

Reader:   I also found a few more to consider:

Therefore I endure everything for the *sake of the elect*, that they *also may obtain* the salvation that is in Christ Jesus in eternal glory.” -2 Timothy 2:10

I don’t know what version you are using, but I think I might switch to a different one. The Greek is pretty plain here that it is speaking of the salvation that is in (en) Christ Jesus WITH (meta) eternal glory. To make it “IN eternal glory” is just to change the sentence.

This is the verse that launches Paul into the whole discussion in verses 11-13 about our life being secure if we are “in Christ,” but our reward only coming to us if we endure and do not deny Him His proper place in our lives. In this verse he expresses his desire that the elect, those chosen by God, might also (along with Paul, who had already earned his prize) obtain the salvation that is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory. It was not the salvation he wanted them to obtain, for they already had that. As he would say in the next verse, if we died with Christ, we WILL also live with Him. It is a done deal. There is just no question about it. But only IF we endure will we reign with Him.

Reigning with Him is the same as obtaining salvation “with eternal glory.” It is like when the server asks you if you want fries with that. You are getting the sandwich anyway, but the fries are something extra. The same is true here. Paul wanted them to get something extra…eternal glory…to go along with the salvation they already had in Christ Jesus. In other words, he wanted them to endure, so they would reign with Christ. He did not want them to deny Him, so they also would be denied. He wanted them to receive something extra along with their salvation. He goes on to explain what he means in the following verses. Read the rest of this entry »

In our last message, a reader was sending me passages that he thought called into question the idea of eternal security, or that once you are saved, you are always saved. This time, he continues with yet more passages.

Reader: Besides the other e-mail I just sent you, I have other questions.

All right, we’ll keep working on them in order.

You adulterous people!  Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God?

The word “kosmos” means an orderly system or arrangement. Right now, this world is set up and arranged in a certain way. However, this system is largely based on the fact that sin and death is in the world, and on the fact that the world has gone its own way and turned its back on God. Satan was given great power over this world when Adam and Eve chose to follow his way rather than God’s way, so much of the way this world system is set up is according to Satan’s ways of doing things. Therefore, we should not love this system and the way it is now, because this system and order in many ways is contrary to God.

I don’t think this is saying that we shouldn’t do things like go to college. I do think that we should find that we do not fit in all that well with many of the ungodly things that go on and are taught at a college. We should be thinking of things in a different way than the typical college student, or professor, would look at things. Read the rest of this entry »

lock02I received the following questions:

I know you claim that 2 Timothy 2:11-13 teach that we cannot lose our salvation.

11. This is a faithful saying:
For if we died with Him,
We shall also live with Him.
12. If we endure,
We shall also reign with Him.
If we deny Him,
He also will deny us.
13. If we are faithless,
He remains faithful;
He cannot deny Himself.

This might seem long, but I will go through several verses that I still don’t understand how they go with what is written in 2 Timothy and the idea of not being able to lose salvation; please take your time to go through this, don’t rush through it:

Some of these passages might not go with the idea of not being able to lose salvation, because they might deal with truths from before the great dispensational change at Acts 28:28. ALL the verses you gave me are from earlier, Acts period books. Yet there is a lot of things I could say about all these verses, and so I will comment on them below. Read the rest of this entry »