What would Jesus SAY?
I was going to talk about confession today, but I decided to look at Once Saved, Always Saved once more to see what Jesus says about it. Jesus repeatedly offered parables to explain where he stood on things:
The Ten Virgins Matthew 25:1-13 which tells of ten virgins who are waiting for the bridegroom to arrive. This is not The Bachelor reality show where a bridegroom is going to choose one of the virgins (uh, well, one of the girls) to marry. In this scripture, the virgins represent Christians. The bridegroom is Jesus Christ (see John 3:29 where John the Baptist calls Jesus the Bridegroom. The bridegroom is marrying his bride, the Church, accomplished through his mission, Last Supper and crucifixion and resurrection.) In the parable, half the virgins (Christians) let their lamp oil run out (their faith has run dry), and they are locked out of the Kingdom of Heaven for not being prepared at the time they were called to heaven.
The Lost Sheep Luke 15:3-5 Then he addressed this parable to them: “Who among you, if he has a hundred sheep and loses one of them does not leave the ninety-nine in the wasteland and follow the lost one until he finds it? And when he finds it, he puts it on his shoulders in jubilation. Again, it is obvious that we can become lost sheep—the sheep was part of his flock and was lost, not a sheep he happened upon. We are blessed that God in his mercy will search us out, but if the sheep had not returned, he would have been lost forever.
The Lost Coin Luke 15:8-10 Or what woman having ten silver pieces and loses one does not light a lamp and sweep the house in a diligent search until she has retrieved what she lost? And when she finds it, she calls in her friends and neighbors to say, “Rejoice with me! I have found the silver piece I lost.” I tell you, there will be the same kind of joy before the angels of God over one repentant sinner.” Why? Because if he doesn’t repent, there will be “wailing and grinding of teeth” as Jesus states throughout his discourses, and the apostles travel all over to deliver that same message. (If it only took an initial belief, why would Paul have written back to towns to admonish them for their continued sin?)
The Prodigal Son Luke 15:11-31 tells of two sons, both belonging to the Father. One leaves and lives a life of evil, but finally returns and the Father celebrates. The son who has been there all along is jealous. The Father says, “My son, you are with me always, and everything I have is yours. But we had to celebrate and rejoice! This brother of yours was dead and has come back to life. He was lost, and is found.” There is no other way to interpret this scripture except exactly as Jesus intended, which is that they represent two Christians. One kept faith, one lost it—he was dead to God the Father—but finally returned. This is not to show that you don’t have to do anything, but rather that God in his mercy will welcome you back if you choose to return. That is not Once Saved, Always Saved but rather Always Welcome In to the Kingdom of Heaven if you remain with God in spirit, mind and deed.
Salt Goes Flat: Mat 5:13 You are the salt of the earth, but what if the salt goes flat? How can you restore its flavor? Then it is good for nothing but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot. The salt—his favored ones, his children, Christians! And you go flat—lose your faith, wander away, become lifeless to Him. Does he let you in anyway? NO!
In short, it’s nice to think we can accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior and never have to worry about falling from grace, but his parables say otherwise.
Mark 13:13 and Matthew 24:13 He who ENDURES TO THE END shall be saved.
God bless you on your journey to salvation.