DOCTRINES

SALVATIONóCAN IT BE LOST? Part-1

HOME PAGE
Baptism
Be Ye Separate
Born-Again
Born-Again Evidence
Doctrines Desk
DoctrinesóIntroduction
FaithóCan It Be Lost? Pt 3
FaithóExamine Self Pt 2
FaithóExamples Pt 4
Faith Is Pt 1
Grace
Hell And The Lake Of Fire
Jesus Only
JudgmentóGreat White Throne
Judgment
Judgment Of Fallen Angels
Judgment Of Israel #1
Judgment Of Israel #2
Judgment Of IsraelóMillennium
Judgment Of Satan
Judgment Of The Heathen
Judgment Of The Nations
Judgment Of The NationsóMillennium
Judgment Seat And Rewards
Repent
Rewards
Salvation
SalvationóCan It Be Lost?
SalvationóCan It Be Lost? Pt 1
SalvationóCan It Be Lost? Pt 2
Serving, Witnessing, Gifts
Serving God
Spiritual Gifts
Trinity
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

(Subjects in this Section)

CAN YOU LOSE YOUR SALVATION?

1-THE THREE POSITIONS
2-MANY NOT SAVED
3-HOW TO BE SAVED
4-TO PUT SALVATION BRIEFLY
    SINNERíS PRAYER
5-NOT EVERYONE WHO BELIEVES THEY ARE SAVED ENTERS HEAVEN
6-WHAT "BORN-A
GAIN" REALLY MEANS
7-A NOTE ABOUT BAPTISM
8-MUST HAVE THE HOLY SPIRIT
9-WORD NOT IN YOU; IGNORANT OF GODíS RIGHTEOUSNESS
10-FAITH, BUT WHAT ABOUT WORKS?
11-HOW DOES SATAN WORK?
12-WHO IS SATAN AND WHERE DID HE COME FROM?
13-MANY ARE LEARNING FROM PREACHERS THAT ARE BLIND TO THE TRUTH
                              CAN YOU LOSE YOUR SALVATION?
      CAN SATAN DRAW YOU AWAY BEFORE YOU ARE EVEN SAVED?

14-THE PARABLE OF THE SOWER
15-THE SEED IS THE WORD OF GOD
16-WILDERNESS SERMON, IN BRIEF
17-WHY GOD ALLOWS TRIALS AND TESTING: PERSECUTIONS WE MAY GO THROUGH
18-SEVEN BROTHERS WITH THEIR MOTHER
19-THREE POSITIONS ON LOSING SALVATION
      FIRST POSITION
      SECOND POSITION
      THIRD POSITION
20-FEW CHANGE THEIR POSITION, SOME SAY THESE THINGS
21-SECOND POSITION IN DETAIL: ONCE SAVED, ALWAYS SAVED
22-THIRD POSITION IN DETAIL: SALVATION CAN BE LOST
23-THIRD POSITION CONTINUES
24-WHY PARABLES?
25-THE CONCLUSION: WHO IS RIGHT?
26-MESSAGE TO THE CHURCHES
27-THE STARTLING CONCLUSION: WE ARE SAVEDó"IF"
28-JESUS EXPLAINS THE PARABLE OF THE SOWER
29-HOW AND WHEN DO WE RECEIVE THE HOLY SPIRIT?
30-THE EARNEST OF THE SPIRIT
31-THE UNFORGIVABLE SIN
32-HOW LONG BEFORE THE SPIRIT WILL DEPART?
33-LAST COMMENTS REGARDING THIS MESSAGE

CAN YOU LOSE YOUR SALVATION?
1-THE THREE POSITIONS

    Some denominations teach that once you say a sinnerís prayer, you are saved; no matter what you do, you can never lose your salvation. Regardless of what sin you commit, you will still go to heaven. Just say that prayer, and everything will be all right.

    A second line of thought is, once you are saved, you can never lose your salvation; however, salvation is not as easy as simply saying a prayer. A person must come by faith in Jesus Christ and with repentance. With the prayer, goes a commitment of obedience to Jesus Christ. Even though the person said a prayer, if they do not continue steadfast in the faith, then it was never a true conversion. If the person goes back into willful, intentional sin and rebellion against God and His Word, the person was never truly born-again.
  
However, some would say the person was saved and he can never fall. Some would also say that a person in this church age can never commit the unforgivable sin, and that they can even turn from trusting God and commit suicide and still go to heaven.

    The third line of thought is that you can be saved by faith, but if you stray and go back into willful, intentional sin and rebellion against God and His Word and do not repent, you can lose your salvation. It teaches that if your faith fails for an extended period of time, you can fall and you will perish. This third line of thought teaches that once you are saved, you can turn your back on God and walk away from Him. If you walk too far, you can lose your salvation.
  
Both the second and third line of thought stand on many Scriptures that tend to support their position. There are also varied opinions between these. The first position also stands on Scripture, but it falls apart quickly in view of the whole counsel of God.

2-MANY NOT SAVED

    To understand each position, we must first examine what real salvation is. How do we really get saved? Does the Bible tell us these things? The answer is yes. Godís Word tells us very clearly how to be saved. One might wonder how there can be so many opinions on the same subject. The answer is very complex, yet one part is simple. Many of our religious leaders themselves are not saved. This may shock some people, but it is true. The majority of our religious leaders today are not really saved. They are the blind leading the blind, and they both will fall into the pit. It was the same when Jesus was on the earth. He constantly warned the people about the religious leaders. Jesus taught "Follow Me," (not a religion). "Follow Me," (not a denomination). "Follow Me," (not another person)-ref Lk 5:27; Lk 9:23. How do we follow Jesus? The answer is in the Bible. Generally speaking, Catholics follow the Catholic denomination, rather than Godís perfect Word. Methodists follow their denomination, and so do Baptists, and Pentecostals, and so on. If their denomination is misleading them, they seldom seem to know it. They believe the words of their preacher, priest, or rabbi, rather than Godís Word, almost every time. The Bible tells us, MY PEOPLE (Godís people) ARE GONE INTO CAPTIVITY, BECAUSE THEY HAVE NO KNOWLEDGE...THEREFORE HELL HATH ENLARGED HERSELF-Isa 5:13,14. Jesus said, THIS PEOPLE DRAWETH NIGH UNTO ME WITH THEIR MOUTH, AND HONORETH ME WITH THEIR LIPS; BUT THEIR HEART IS FAR FROM ME-Mt 15:8. THEY WORSHIP ME IN VAIN; THEIR TEACHINGS ARE BUT RULES TAUGHT BY MEN-Mt 15:9 NIV.
  
It is very common these days, when witnessing to people, that they respond, "I have my own religion." Indeed, they do. They often follow their religion right to the lake of fire. No one will enter heaven through a "religion." It is only through Jesus Christ that we can enter heaven. Jesus says, MY SHEEP HEAR MY VOICEÖAND THEY FOLLOW ME-Jn 10:27. You can follow Jesus and His teachings, or follow your "denomination" right to hell. Which choice will you make?

3-HOW TO BE SAVED

    Many people in these last days seem to think God is not so strict anymore. Some know very little about how the Bible says to be saved. God is love. Many seem to believe He will forgive all. A standard question among some is, "Can you remember a time when you asked Jesus into your life?" If you say, "Yes," then it is generally accepted that you are born-again. The Bible tells us, to BE READY ALWAYS TO GIVE AN ANSWER TO EVERY MAN THAT ASKETH YOU A REASON OF THE HOPE THAT IS IN YOU WITH MEEKNESS AND FEAR-1 Pe 3:15. Hell is going to be full of people who thought they were "born-again." The Bible commands us to examine ourselves. It is not something you guess at or hope for blindly. It is not something that you "feel." Salvation is not something that you leave to chance, and take "pot luck." Salvation is not being a good person or earning your way into heaven. What is it then? Paul tells us, EXAMINE YOURSELVES, WHETHER YE BE IN THE FAITH; PROVE YOUR OWN SELVES-2 Cor 13:5. FOR IF WE WOULD JUDGE OURSELVES, WE SHOULD NOT BE JUDGED-1 Cor 11:31.

4-TO PUT SALVATION BRIEFLY

    You have to first acknowledge you are a sinner. For all HAVE SINNED, AND COME SHORT OF THE GLORY OF GOD-Ro 3:23. Be willing to change, to turn away from sin, and live for Jesus. Be willing to repent, and follow the Word of God. Open your heart.
  
Be willing to ask God to help you make that change. It is written, KNOW YE NOT THAT THE FRIENDSHIP OF THE WORLD IS ENMITY WITH GOD? WHOSOEVER THEREFORE WILL BE A FRIEND OF THE WORLD IS THE ENEMY OF GOD-Ja 4:4. HE THAT IS NOT WITH ME IS AGAINST ME-Lk 11:23. Believe in your heart that Jesus Christ is the only begotten Son of God. Believe Jesus died for your sins and paid the penalty for you. Ask for forgiveness. Ask for Godís mercy. By faith, receive Jesus Christ. Be willing to let the Spirit of God come into you and take control. It is written, STRAIGHT IS THE GATE, AND NARROW IN THE WAY, WHICH LEADETH UNTO LIFE, AND FEW THERE BE THAT FIND IT-Mt 7:14. After you have made this decision for Jesus by faith, and after you have repented, then follow immediately in baptism by immersion-ref Mk 16:16; Ro 6:4; Col 2:12; in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Do it Godís way. The Scriptures tell us, BY THIS GOSPEL YOU ARE SAVED-1 Cor 15:2 NIV.

    Right now, make up your mind that you are going to follow Jesus. If your church does not follow the Scriptures, then separate from it. Follow the pure Word of God, and find a good, Bible-teaching church. Right now, bow in prayer, and say this prayer from your heart.
  
Dear Jesus, I am a sinner. I believe You are the Son of God, and died for my sins on the cross. Forgive all my sins. Remove all my doubts. Jesus, I ask You to come into my life. Help me to follow and obey Your commandments, and to live for You. Jesus, I give You my life. Thank you for hearing my prayer. Thank you for coming into my life. I ask it in the name of my Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. Amen.

    If you have just made that decision for Jesus by faith, please write and let us know.

    We should have a booklet called Guidelines From the Bible to send you. This should help you get started off in the right direction. Be baptized immediately, and follow the Gospel in obedience. Be sure to confess Jesus Christ, God's only begotten Son as your only hope of salvation to people and never be ashamed-ref Ro 10:9-11; 2 Cor 4:13; 1 Tim 6:12; Heb 3:6.

5-NOT EVERYONE THAT BELIEVES THEY ARE SAVED ENTERS HEAVEN

    The Bible tells us, BY THEIR FRUITS YE SHALL KNOW THEM.
  
NOT EVERY ONE THAT SAITH UNTO ME, LORD, LORD, SHALL ENTER INTO THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN; BUT HE THAT DOETH THE WILL OF MY FATHER WHICH IS IN HEAVEN.
  
MANY WILL SAY TO ME IN THAT DAY (the day of judgment), LORD, LORD, HAVE WE NOT PROPHESIED IN THY NAME? AND IN THY NAME HAVE CAST OUT DEVILS? AND IN THY NAME DONE MANY WONDERFUL WORKS? (Doesnít this sound like they are saved?) AND THEN WILL I PROFESS UNTO THEM, I NEVER KNEW YOU: DEPART FROM ME, YE THAT WORK INIQUITY-Mt 7:20-23. Even while standing at the judgment, they believe they are saved. They seem to be saying, "Lord, we accepted You as our Saviour" (in other words, Lord, Lord), but Jesus is saying back to them that He never knew them. Jesus did not accept them. We might ask, "Why? How could this be?" The answer lies in the previous verse: Only those who do THE WILL OF MY FATHER enter into the kingdom of heaven-Mt 7:21.

6-WHAT BORN-AGAIN REALLY MEANS

    Jesus said, VERILY, VERILY I SAY UNTO THEE, EXCEPT A MAN BE BORN AGAIN, HE CANNOT SEE THE KINGDOM OF GOD-Jn 3:3. EXCEPT A MAN BE BORN OF WATER AND OF THE SPIRIT, HE CANNOT ENTER INTO THE KINGDOM OF GOD-Jn 3:5. One might ask, "How can I be born-again?" First, understand that GOD SO LOVED THE WORLD, THAT HE GAVE HIS ONLY BEGOTTEN SON, THAT WHOSOEVER BELIEVETH IN HIM SHOULD NOT PERISH, BUT HAVE EVERLASTING LIFE-Jn 3:16. IN THE BEGINNING WAS THE WORD, AND THE WORD WAS WITH GOD, AND THE WORD WAS GOD. AND THE WORD (Jesus) WAS MADE FLESH AND DWELT AMONG US, (AND WE BEHELD HIS GLORY, THE GLORY AS OF THE ONLY BEGOTTEN OF THE FATHER,) FULL OF GRACE AND TRUTH-Jn 1:1,14. Jesus became sin for us. He died on the cross for our sins. We can receive this forgiveness by believing on Jesus, repenting of (or turning our back on) all sin, asking Jesus to come into our hearts, confessing Jesus publicly (never be ashamed), and following the Gospel in obedience (including baptism).

   Jesus teaches Nicodemus about the necessity of the new birth. Nicodemus said to Jesus, WE KNOW THAT THOU ART A TEACHER COME FROM GOD-Jn 3:2. Note the word "we." He seemed to be saying that many of the religious leaders knew that Jesus came from God. Yet, the Scriptures show us that they would not bow down to Jesus. They would not receive Him as their Lord and Saviour. Jesus told Nicodemus, EXCEPT A MAN BE BORN AGAIN, HE CANNOT SEE THE KINGDOM OF GOD-Jn 3:3. These were the spiritual leaders of Israel. They believed they knew God, yet Jesus plainly told them that they did not know His Father.
  
Jesus was relating to Nicodemus, that he must be born-again. He must have a new nature. He must put off the old and put on the new. Nicodemus did not understand. He said, HOW CAN A MAN BE BORN WHEN HE IS OLD? CAN HE ENTER THE SECOND TIME INTO HIS MOTHERíS WOMB, AND BE BORN?-Jn 3:4. His question showed that he had no understanding of the concept of being born-again. Jesus commented back, THAT WHICH IS BORN OF THE FLESH IS FLESH; AND THAT WHICH IS BORN OF THE SPIRIT IS SPIRIT-Jn 3:6. Jesus is relating that the new birth was of the Spirit, and not of the flesh. A person must be born of the Spirit. He must be born-again. He needs to have the Spirit of God on the inside of him.
  
Such a concept was unheard of by the religious leaders. Such words as these and others that Jesus spoke greatly irritated them. Jesus was from Galilee, a carpenter from Nazareth, yet He was teaching the people and the religious leaders. He was relating to all that they needed their sins forgiven. This must have greatly irritated the religious leaders. Jesus makes it clear that without the new birth they could not see the kingdom of God.
  
They did not understand, neither would they accept or believe such teaching.
  
Each of us are confronted with these same words. We need to come before God with a humble, childlike attitude of repentance and submission. All have sinned. All are unworthy. Again, the words of Jesus ring out, EXCEPT A MAN BE BORN AGAIN, HE CANNOT SEE THE KINGDOM OF GOD. JESUS ANSWERED, VERILY, VERILY, I SAY UNTO THEE, EXCEPT A MAN BE BORN OF WATER AND OF THE SPIRIT, HE CANNOT ENTER INTO THE KINGDOM OF GOD-Jn 3:3,5.
  
No matter how righteous we may think we are, and no matter how religious we may be, without the new birth, no one will see the kingdom of God.

    We can see emphasis in this area, as Jesus said, ENTER YE IN AT THE STRAIT GATE: FOR WIDE IS THE GATE, AND BROAD IS THE WAY, THAT LEADETH TO DESTRUCTION, AND MANY THERE BE WHICH GO IN THEREAT. Many try to enter heaven their own way. They seek to enter through their denomination or doctrine, rather than through Godís perfect Word. BECAUSE STRAIT IS THE GATE, AND NARROW IS THE WAY, WHICH LEADETH UNTO LIFE, AND FEW THERE BE THAT FIND IT-Mt 7:13,14. Few ever find the way to which the Scriptures are referring. So few will study their Bible. Very few churches preach the true "narrow way," which is the only way that leads unto life.
  
The Bible tells us, BUT, EXCEPT YE REPENT, YE SHALL ALL LIKEWISE PERISH-Lk 13:3. There are so many that teach, just believe on the name of Jesus. It seems many forget that we must also repent. We must be born-again. Jesus tells us, NO MAN PUTTETH A PIECE OF NEW CLOTH UNTO AN OLD GARMENT, FOR THAT WHICH IS PUT IN TO FILL IT UP TAKETH FROM THE GARMENT, AND THE RENT IS MADE WORSE. NEITHER DO MEN PUT NEW WINE INTO OLD BOTTLES: ELSE THE BOTTLES BREAK, AND THE WINE RUNNETH OUT, AND THE BOTTLES PERISH: BUT THEY PUT NEW WINE INTO NEW BOTTLES, AND BOTH ARE PRESERVED-Mt 9:16,17. When we are born-again, we are changed and made new. We begin to conform to Christ's nature. We put aside the old; all things are made new. We repent, turn aside from our old sinful ways, and follow our new Master, Jesus. We stop serving Satan. We begin serving the only begotten Son of God. We cannot serve two masters: both Jesus and the world. If we are of the world, we do not belong to Jesus. The Holy Spirit spoke through the prophet Ezekiel, saying, A NEW HEART ALSO WILL I GIVE YOU, AND A NEW SPIRIT WILL I PUT WITHIN YOU-Ezek 36:26. Have you been born-again? Have you received Godís Spirit in you?

    It is written, YET TO ALL WHO "RECEIVED" HIM, TO THOSE WHO BELIEVED IN HIS NAME, HE GAVE THE RIGHT TO BECOME CHILDREN OF GOD-CHILDREN BORN NOT OF NATURAL DESCENTÖBUT BORN OF GOD-Jn 1:12,13 NIV. To be born-again, is to be born of God. He did not save us, BECAUSE OF RIGHTEOUS THINGS WE HAD DONE, BUT BECAUSE OF HIS MERCY. HE SAVED US THROUGH THE WASHING OF REBIRTH AND RENEWAL BY THE HOLY SPIRIT-Titus 3:5 NIV. We are changed, born-again, and made new through the Holy Spirit. God gives us this great gift, in order that, BEING JUSTIFIED BY HIS GRACE, WE SHOULD BE MADE HEIRS ACCORDING TO THE HOPE OF ETERNAL LIFE-Titus 3:7. IN HIS GREAT MERCY HE HAS GIVEN US NEW BIRTH-1 Pe 1:3 NIV. The new birth changes us. Therefore, IF ANY MAN BE IN CHRIST, HE IS A NEW CREATURE: OLD THINGS ARE PASSED AWAY; BEHOLD, ALL THINGS ARE BECOME NEW-2 Cor 5:17. WHAT COUNTS IS A NEW CREATION-Gal 6:15 NIV. BE NOT CONFORMED TO THIS WORLD: BUT BE YE TRANSFORMED BY THE RENEWING OF YOUR MIND-Ro 12:2. We are born-again, transformed, and renewed. Now, we conform to Godís will, not to this world. Have you truly been born-again?
  
The Scriptures tell us, to PUT OFFÖTHE OLD MAN (or the old self), WHICH IS CORRUPT ACCORDING TO THE DECEITFUL LUSTS; AND BE RENEWED IN THE SPIRIT OF YOUR MIND; AND THAT YE PUT ON THE NEW MAN, WHICH AFTER GOD IS CREATED IN RIGHTEOUSNESS AND TRUE HOLINESS-Eph 4:22-24. For without holiness, no one will see the Lord-ref Heb 12:14. We put aside the lusts of this world and follow Jesus. Godís Spirit comes into us and gives us the power we need to overcome this world, even while being in the world. The renewing of our mind begins, as we, PUT OFF THE OLD MAN WITH HIS DEEDS; AND HAVE PUT ON THE NEW MAN, WHICH IS RENEWED IN "KNOWLEDGE" AFTER THE IMAGE OF HIM THAT CREATED HIM-Col 3:9,10. God is telling us over and over when we are born-again, we put aside our old self. We begin living for the next world. So many people think they are going to enter the kingdom of heaven when they die, yet they have never "put off the old man with his deeds." They have never been renewed in the "spirit of their mind." They have never been born-again, as they are not willing to give up living for this world. They enjoy sin for a season, which results in hell and the lake of fire for eternity.
  
It is written, HE THAT COMMITTETH SIN IS OF THE DEVIL; FOR THE DEVIL SINNETH FROM THE BEGINNING. FOR THIS PURPOSE THE SON OF GOD WAS MANIFESTED (appeared), THAT HE MIGHT DESTROY THE WORKS OF THE DEVIL. WHOSOEVER IS BORN OF GOD DOTH NOT COMMIT SIN (does not intentionally go on sinning); FOR HIS SEED REMAINETH IN HIM: AND HE CANNOT SIN, BECAUSE HE IS BORN OF GOD-1 Jn 3:8,9. THIS IS HOW WE KNOW WHO THE CHILDREN OF GOD ARE AND WHO THE CHILDREN OF THE DEVIL ARE-1 Jn 3:10 NIV. FOR YOU HAVE BEEN BORN AGAIN, NOT OF PERISHABLE SEED, BUT OF IMPERISHABLE, THROUGH THE LIVING AND ENDURING WORD OF GOD-1 Pe 1:23 NIV. FOR ALL FLESH IS AS GRASS, AND ALL THE GLORY OF MAN AS THE FLOWER OF GRASS. THE GRASS WITHERETH, AND THE FLOWER THEREOF FALLETH AWAY: BUT THE WORD OF THE LORD ENDURETH FOR EVER-1 Pe 1:24,25. Those who are born-again will endure forever. SEEING YE HAVE PURIFIED YOUR SOULS IN OBEYING THE TRUTH-1 Pe 1:22. We must know and obey the truth. We are saved by faith, which COMETH BY HEARING, AND HEARING BY THE WORD OF GOD-Ro 10:17. The Bible tells us, Godís people are destroyed for a "lack of knowledge"-ref Hos 4:6.

    It is written, FOR WHATSOEVER IS BORN OF GOD OVERCOMETH THE WORLD: AND THIS IS THE VICTORY THAT OVERCOMETH THE WORLD, EVEN OUR FAITH-1 Jn 5:4. THEREFORE BEING JUSTIFIED BY FAITH, WE HAVE PEACE WITH GOD THROUGH OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST-Ro 5:1. A person is to overcome the world. HEREBY KNOW WE THAT WE DWELL IN HIM, AND HE IN US, BECAUSE HE HATH GIVEN US OF HIS SPIRIT. WHOSOEVER SHALL CONFESS THAT JESUS IS THE SON OF GOD, GOD DWELLETH "IN" HIM, AND HE IN GOD-1 Jn 4:13,15. Ask yourself, does God actually dwell in you? If you are still living in intentional sin, the answer is no. Godís Spirit will enter you when you are truly born-again.

    The Bible tells us, Godís Word is NIGH (near) THEE, EVEN IN THY MOUTH, AND IN THY HEART: THAT IS, THE WORD OF FAITH, WHICH WE PREACH; 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. FOR WITH THE HEART MAN BELIEVETH UNTO RIGHTEOUSNESS; AND WITH THE MOUTH CONFESSION IS MADE UNTO SALVATION. FOR THE SCRIPTURE SAITH, WHOSOEVER BELIEVETH ON HIM SHALL NOT BE ASHAMED-Ro 10:8-11. The confession the Bible is referring to here is not a confession of belief in Jesus when you join a church. This is a confession before many witnesses. When we are "born-again," we no longer live for ourselves, but for Jesus. We confess Jesus to many, as the only hope we have to be saved. It is written, THE HOPE OF WHICH WE BOAST-Heb 3:6 NIV. As our faith is, so we will speak of Jesus. If we have little faith, there will be little speaking. If much faith, there is much speaking about Jesus. Paul tells us, "I BELIEVED; THEREFORE I HAVE SPOKEN." WITH THAT SAME SPIRIT OF FAITH WE ALSO BELIEVE AND THEREFORE SPEAK-2 Cor 4:13 NIV. When we are born-again, we will be testifying of Jesus. We will not be ashamed. Have you taken hold of eternal life, resulting in much confession about Jesus? TAKE HOLD OF THE ETERNAL LIFE TO WHICH YOU WERE CALLED WHEN YOU MADE YOUR GOOD CONFESSION IN THE PRESENCE OF MANY WITNESSES-1 Tim 6:12 NIV. Have you been born-again and thereby, have CROSSED OVER FROM DEATH TO LIFE?-Jn 5:24 NIV. Do you think you can do it your way and not follow Godís way? The Bible warns us, THERE IS A WAY WHICH SEEMETH RIGHT UNTO A MAN; BUT THE END THEREOF ARE THE WAYS OF DEATH-Pv 14:12.
  
Very soon, we will stand in front of our Creator. It is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment-ref Heb 9:27. Will you stand before Him, and say, "Lord, Lord, we did this and that," only to have Him tell you, "Depart from Me," and you are cast into the lake of fire? How tragic to have Him say to you, YE HAVE NEITHER HEARD HIS VOICE AT ANY TIME, NOR SEEN HIS SHAPE. AND YE HAVE NOT HIS WORD ABIDING IN YOU: FOR WHOM HE HATH SENT, HIM YE BELIEVE NOT. SEARCH THE SCRIPTURES; FOR IN THEM YE THINK YE HAVE ETERNAL LIFE: AND THEY ARE THEY WHICH TESTIFY OF ME. AND YE WILL NOT COME TO ME, THAT YE MIGHT HAVE LIFE-Jn 5:37-40. What a day it will be, when you stand in front of the greatest judgment of them all! You may there find out that because you chose to follow a "religion" and not Godís Word that now you will pay an eternal price in the lake of fire. Yes, your preacher, priest, or rabbi may also be there in hell. Those who followed Godís Word from the Bible and searched out the truth for themselves will take hold of eternal life. There will be no excuses for you, such as, "My religious leader told me this or that." God may slowly open the Bible and say, "Yes, you chose to follow manís doctrine, and not My Word. You chose to follow manís interpretation of the Word, instead of studying for yourself, to find out what I really said." By not following God, you have followed Satan. Now, you will dwell in the same place he does: the lake of fire, which was prepared for Satan and his angels. Enjoy sin for a season, for eternity in hell. You will have an eternity to think about this mistake, with no one to blame but yourself. When you buy something of great value, do you purchase it without seeing it first? Are you too busy in this world to check out Godís Word?

7-A NOTE ABOUT BAPTISM

    Mk 16:16-HE THAT BELIEVETH AND IS BAPTIZED SHALL BE SAVED; BUT HE THAT BELIEVETH NOT SHALL BE DAMNED. The Scriptures tell us to believe (first) and afterward be baptized.
  
Mt 28:19,20-GO YE THEREFORE, AND TEACH ALL NATIONS, BAPTIZING THEM IN THE NAME OF THE FATHER, AND OF THE SON, AND OF THE HOLY GHOST: TEACHING THEM TO OBSERVE ALL THINGS WHATSOEVER I HAVE COMMANDED YOU: AND, LO, I AM WITH YOU ALWAY, EVEN UNTO THE END OF THE WORLD. AMEN.
  
The Scriptures tell us, REPENT (first), AND BE BAPTIZED (second) EVERY ONE OF YOU IN THE NAME OF JESUS CHRIST FOR THE REMISSION OF SINS, AND YE SHALL RECEIVE THE GIFT OF THE HOLY GHOST-Acts 2:38. Luke tells us, AND ALL THE PEOPLE THAT HEARD HIM, AND THE PUBLICANS, JUSTIFIED GOD, BEING BAPTIZED WITH THE BAPTISM OF JOHN-Lk 7:29. Note, they first heard the Word, then were baptized by full immersion (baptism of John); not by sprinkling (Ro 6:4 and Col 2:12), and not as a child or baby. BUT THE PHARISEES AND LAWYERS REJECTED THE COUNSEL OF GOD AGAINST THEMSELVES, BEING NOT BAPTIZED OF HIM-Lk 7:29,30. Have you rejected God by not being baptized the way the Bible commands after receiving Jesus as your personal Savior?

8-MUST HAVE THE HOLY SPIRIT

    You must have the Holy Spirit in you. If you do not have Godís Spirit in you, you are none of His, as it is written, Ro 8:9-NOW IF ANY MAN HAVE NOT THE SPIRIT OF CHRIST, HE IS NONE OF HIS.
  
You are not born-again, if you do not have the Holy Spirit. The Lord Jesus tells us, IF YE LOVE ME, KEEP MY COMMANDMENTS. AND I WILL PRAY THE FATHER, AND HE SHALL GIVE YOU ANOTHER COMFORTER, THAT HE MAY ABIDE WITH YOU FOR EVER; EVEN THE SPIRIT OF TRUTH; WHOM THE WORLD CANNOT RECEIVE, BECAUSE IT SEETH HIM NOT, NEITHER KNOWETH HIM: BUT YE KNOW HIM; FOR HE DWELLETH WITH YOU, AND SHALL BE IN YOU-Jn 14:15-17. There is a condition placed on receiving Godís Spirit. It is obedience to the Gospel. For he that KEEPETH HIS COMMANDMENTS DWELLETH IN HIM, AND HE IN HIM. AND HEREBY WE KNOW THAT HE ABIDETH IN US, BY THE SPIRIT WHICH HE HATH GIVEN US-1 Jn 3:24. AND BEING MADE PERFECT, HE BECAME THE AUTHOR OF ETERNAL SALVATION UNTO ALL THEM THAT OBEY HIM-Heb 5:9.
  
God also tells us we must not walk after the flesh, but rather do as Godís Word commands. As it is written, THERE IS THEREFORE NOW NO CONDEMNATION TO THEM WHICH ARE IN CHRIST JESUS, WHO WALK NOT AFTER THE FLESH, BUT AFTER THE SPIRIT-Ro 8:1. When we confess our sins, repent, and receive Jesus as our Lord and Savior, our sins are forgiven. Not only are our sins forgiven, but, AS FAR AS THE EAST IS FROM THE WEST, SO FAR HATH HE REMOVED OUR TRANSGRESSIONS FROM US-Ps 103:12. THOUGH YOUR SINS BE AS SCARLET, THEY SHALL BE AS WHITE AS SNOW; THOUGH THEY BE RED LIKE CRIMSON, THEY SHALL BE AS WOOL-Isa 1:18.
  
Godís Spirit gives you the power, if you are born-again to resist and give up all intentional sin. Because, GREATER IS HE THAT IS IN YOU (the Spirit of God), THAN HE THAT IS IN THE WORLD (Satan)-1 Jn 4:4. Have you resisted sin to the point of blood?-ref Heb 12:4.

9-WORD NOT IN YOU; IGNORANT OF GOD'S RIGHTEOUSNESS

    We must make sure that our "zeal" for God is accompanied by "knowledge" (Godís Word). If it is not, we may go astray. Only through Godís Word can we hope to resist Satan as he comes against us to mislead us. The Bible tells us to put on the full armor of God, which is His Word-ref Eph 6:11, so that we do not become like those who HAVE A ZEAL OF GOD, BUT NOT ACCORDING TO KNOWLEDGE (the Word of God from the Bible). FOR THEY BEING IGNORANT OF GODíS RIGHTEOUSNESS, AND GOING ABOUT TO ESTABLISH THEIR OWN RIGHTEOUSNESS, HAVE NOT SUBMITTED THEMSELVES (given themselves) UNTO THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD-Ro 10:2,3. Because they did not know the Bible, the people were lost. They had a zeal for God, but did not understand God. They are destroyed for a lack of knowledge, and hell hath enlarged herself-ref Hos 4:6; Isa 5:13,14.
  
We are commanded to study and meditate in Godís Word. If you are disobeying Godís Word, you are in sin. As it is written, THIS BOOK OF THE LAW SHALL NOT DEPART OUT OF THY MOUTH; BUT THOU SHALT MEDITATE THEREIN DAY AND NIGHT, THAT THOU MAYEST OBSERVE TO DO ACCORDING TO ALL THAT IS WRITTEN THEREIN: FOR THEN THOU SHALT MAKE THY WAY PROSPEROUS, AND THEN THOU SHALT HAVE GOOD SUCCESS-Jos 1:8. RECEIVE WITH MEEKNESS THE ENGRAFTED WORD, WHICH IS ABLE TO SAVE YOUR SOULS-Ja 1:21.
  
Along with studying the Word, you must also be a doer of the Word. As James tells us, BUT BE YE DOERS OF THE WORD, AND NOT HEARERS ONLY; DECEIVING YOUR OWN SELVES. FOR IF ANY BE A HEARER OF THE WORD, AND NOT A DOER, HE IS LIKE UNTO A MAN BEHOLDING HIS NATURAL FACE IN A GLASS-Ja 1:22,23. Do you go to church and read your Bible (listen to the Word), but neglect to do it? The Bible commands us to be a doer of the Word. This includes obeying the commandments, as well as witnessing for Jesus as God directs. Does not the Bible say we are His witnesses? Witnessing is a command to every born-again believer. If you are ashamed to witness for Jesus, He will be ashamed of you at judgment-ref Lk 9:26. Is this you? By not witnessing for Him, you are denying Him. We can deny Him by our actions. You may study the Word, go to church, and give money to the church. You may even do your best to obey the Ten Commandments. Yet, if you will not let your "light shine" (the hope you have of salvation in Jesus), then you are on your way to hell and probably donít even know it. If you will not serve Jesus now, you will not have a chance to serve Him in heaven. While works do not save you, a lack of works will condemn you. By their fruits ye shall know them.

10-FAITH, BUT WHAT ABOUT WORKS?

    We are saved by "faith." The Bible tells us, FAITH COMETH BY HEARING, AND HEARING BY THE WORD OF GOD-Ro 10:17. Faith comes only from Godís Word. We must also act on the Word. For it is written, AS THE BODY WITHOUT THE SPIRIT IS DEAD (if you do not have Godís Spirit, you are not born-again), SO FAITH WITHOUT WORKS IS DEAD ALSO-Ja 2:26. EVEN SO FAITH, IF IT HATH NOT WORKS, IS DEAD, BEING ALONE. YEA, A MAN MAY SAY, THOU HAST FAITH, AND I HAVE WORKS: SHOW ME THY FAITH WITHOUT THY WORKS, AND I WILL SHOW THEE MY FAITH BY MY WORKS: (by what I do)-Ja 2:17,18. Again, the Scriptures say, BUT WILT THOU KNOW, O VAIN MAN, THAT FAITH WITHOUT WORKS IS DEAD? SEEST THOU HOW FAITH WROUGHT WITH HIS WORKS, AND BY WORKS WAS FAITH MADE PERFECT?-Ja 2:20,22. Notice, that faith is made perfect through works. YE SEE THEN HOW THAT BY WORKS A MAN IS JUSTIFIED, AND NOT BY FAITH ONLY-Ja 2:24.
  
For by Godís GRACE ARE YE SAVED THROUGH FAITH; AND THAT NOT OF YOURSELVES: IT IS THE GIFT OF GOD: NOT OF WORKS, LEST ANY MAN SHOULD BOAST. FOR WE ARE HIS WORKMANSHIP CREATED IN CHRIST JESUS UNTO GOOD WORKS, WHICH GOD HATH BEFORE ORDAINED THAT WE SHOULD WALK IN THEM-Eph 2:8-10.
  
We are saved by grace. This is a gift of God. We cannot earn it. To come under grace, we must follow in obedience to the Word. We need to believe, which means a total uncompromising commitment of love and obedience. Are you truly born-again?

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * 

11-HOW DOES SATAN WORK?

    Once you make that decision for Jesus, Satan cometh immediately to take the Word out of your heart. Satan knows that once you are filled with Godís Word, it is much more difficult for him to deceive you. If you are going to pull up a tree, it is best to do so before it grows big. Satan will try to pull you away from sound doctrine, while you are a new Christian, or a small tree. Your roots must be established through knowledge (through the Word). Satan cannot stand before the Word. If you do not have the Word implanted in you, how can you use it against Satan? I remember a new Christian saying, "Satan cannot deceive me." This statement is contrary to Scripture and shows a great lack of understanding. Today, that person seems far from God, although he is unable to recognize it. He is wandering around in darkness, not knowing where he is going. When a person makes such a statement, it shows they are already deceived.
  
One of the first things Satan will often try to do is to prevent a person from being baptized by immersion once they have asked Jesus into their life. Regretfully, he succeeds with many. Baptism is a command of obedience for the new Christian. Satan will do anything he can to stop it. Several times, we have seen people get sick the day they are to be baptized. We have frequently seen unbelievers used to persuade the person to put off being baptized. They may say, "Do it later." Time after time, religious leaders attach little or no importance to baptism. Thus, the new Christian is deceived. Many religious leaders baptize incorrectly, when viewed in light of the Scriptures. The new Christian, who knows little of the Word, is easily deceived. Sometimes these people who are deceiving others are themselves born-again, yet they try to make the Scriptures say something they do not. Satan, indeed, uses anything he can to try to make you fall back into sin. The lake of fire was prepared for Satan and his angels. Those who will not stand firm in Jesus will also be there for eternity. The Bible tells us, he that shall endure unto the end shall be saved. Satan will try to make you fall. He commences the attack, even when you begin to think about coming to Jesus. When you want to do something for Jesus, you will probably "feel" you should not do it. Satan is called "the prince of the power of the air." The Bible does not tell us to go by feelings, but "obey the Word." If you go by feelings, chances are you will be greatly deceived and never know it. It is by the Word (knowledge), which produces faith, that we stand firm; not by feelings.
  
When God wants you to do something, Satan will try to make you "feel" it is wrong. How do we know what Godís will is? by "the Word." You may say, "But I donít have time to get into the Word." Congratulations, you just confessed you are doing exactly what Satan wants you to do. If you do not have time, you are most likely living for this world. How much time do you spend partaking of idle talk, watching TV, going to the movies, or reading books or newspapers? Why not spend "all" that time studying Godís Word instead? If the world is stopping you, then something is wrong. The Bible tells us we are not of this world. We are called to overcome the world and our fleshly desires. Spend much more time in Godís Word. Attend a good, Bible-teaching church. Spend more time working for Jesus. Fellowship with true, fruit-bearing believers and separate from those who are "not of God." What place hath righteousness with unrighteousness? What place has a Christian with a non-Christian? What place has light with darkness?-ref 2 Cor 6:14. The darkness cannot comprehend the light. Your purpose for being with unbelievers, should be to witness to them, not to fellowship on things of the world. Beware, lest Satan use them to draw you back into the world and away from the hope of your salvation, the Lord Jesus Christ. Never underestimate Satanís ability to deceive you, by putting thoughts into your mind.

12-WHO IS SATAN AND WHERE DID HE COME FROM?

    The Scriptures tell us that God created Satan. YOU WERE THE MODEL OF PERFECTION, FULL OF WISDOM AND PERFECT IN BEAUTY. YOU WERE IN EDEN, THE GARDEN OF GOD; EVERY PRECIOUS STONE ADORNED YOUÖYOUR SETTINGS AND MOUNTINGS WERE MADE OF GOLD; ON THE DAY YOU WERE CREATED THEY WERE PREPARED. YOU WERE ANOINTED AS A GUARDIAN CHERUB, FOR SO I ORDAINED YOU. YOU WERE ON THE HOLY MOUNT OF GOD; YOU WALKED AMONG THE FIERY STONES. YOU WERE BLAMELESS IN YOUR WAYS FROM THE DAY YOU WERE CREATED TILL WICKEDNESS WAS FOUND IN YOU. THROUGH YOUR WIDESPREAD TRADE YOU WERE FILLED WITH VIOLENCE, AND YOU SINNED. SO I DROVE YOU IN DISGRACE FROM THE MOUNT OF GOD, AND I EXPELLED YOU, O GUARDIAN CHERUB, FROM AMONG THE FIERY STONES. YOUR HEART BECAME PROUD ON ACCOUNT OF YOUR BEAUTY, AND YOU CORRUPTED YOUR WISDOM BECAUSE OF YOUR SPLENDOR. SO I THREW YOU TO THE EARTH-Ezek 28:12-17 NIV. Did not Satan deceive the angels in heaven? They are now held in CHAINS UNDER DARKNESS UNTO THE JUDGMENT OF THE GREAT DAY-Jude 6. If Satan can deceive angels, who are stronger than you, do not think he cannot deceive you. It is only through the loving grace of God that we are called. It is through the Holy Spirit in us and the "Word" which dwells in our hearts, that we can keep from being deceived by Satan. How did Jesus stand against Satan in the wilderness? It was through the Word. Satan is not able to stand against the Word, which is a two-edged sword.
  
The Scriptures describe Satan as a deceiver, liar, murderer, accuser, tempter, prince, destroyer, and the evil one. He is called Lucifer, son of the morning; the god of this age; the prince of this world; the prince of the power of the air; and the spirit that works in the children of disobedience. Satan wiles, devises, snares, beguiles, seduces, opposes, resists, blasphemes, deceives, sows tares, hinders, buffets, tempts, persecutes, and rules evil men and spirits. Do not dare to think you can stand against the schemes of Satan, except through the Word and Godís mercy. Even if you study the Word, the Bible tells us if we do not obey (do) the Word, we are deceived-ref Ja 1:22. Do not give place to Satan to lead you astray. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. You do give place to Satan by not studying and doing the Word.
  
The Bible tells us of SATAN, WHO LEADS THE WHOLE WORLD ASTRAY-Rev 12:9 NIV. AND THE DEVIL THAT DECEIVED THEM-Rev 20:10. Therefore, we are to BE SOBER, BE VIGILANT (be self-controlled and alert); BECAUSE YOUR ADVERSARY (your enemy) THE DEVIL, AS A ROARING LION, WALKETH ABOUT, SEEKING WHOM HE MAY DEVOUR-1 Pe 5:8. NEITHER GIVE PLACE TO THE DEVIL-Eph 4:27.

13-MANY ARE LEARNING FROM PREACHERS THAT ARE BLIND TO THE TRUTH

    So many Bible teachers are deceiving people in these last days. God warns us, FOR SUCH MEN ARE FALSE APOSTLES, DECEITFUL WORKMEN, MASQUERADING AS APOSTLES OF CHRIST. AND NO WONDER, FOR SATAN HIMSELF MASQUERADES AS AN ANGEL OF LIGHT. IT IS NOT SURPRISING, THEN, IF HIS SERVANTS MASQUERADE AS SERVANTS OF RIGHTEOUSNESS (ministers of righteousness-KJV). THEIR END WILL BE WHAT THEIR ACTIONS DESERVE-2 Cor 11:13-15 NIV. Did you hear that? The Bible said servants or ministers of righteousness. Only those that study and obey the Word are going to escape the fire of hell. He that hath an ear, let him hear.
  
God is speaking through His Word. The Lord said, SIMON, SIMON, BEHOLD, SATAN HATH DESIRED TO HAVE YOU, THAT HE MAY SIFT YOU AS WHEAT-Lk 22:31. Do not ever think that Satan cannot deceive you. If you do, Satan may sift you as wheat. Paul wrote about half of the New Testament, yet he said, WE WOULD HAVE COME UNTO YOU, EVEN I PAUL, ONCE AND AGAIN; BUT SATAN HINDERED US-1 Thes 2:18. If Satan hindered Paul and his company, what might he do to you?

    It is written, Eph 6:10-FINALLY, MY BRETHREN, BE STRONG IN THE LORD, AND IN THE POWER OF HIS MIGHT.
  
11-PUT ON THE WHOLE ARMOUR OF GOD, THAT YE MAY BE ABLE TO STAND AGAINST THE WILES (or schemes) OF THE DEVIL.
  
12-FOR WE WRESTLE (or struggle) NOT AGAINST FLESH AND BLOOD, BUT AGAINST PRINCIPALITIES (or authorities), AGAINST POWERS, AGAINST THE RULERS OF THE DARKNESS OF THIS WORLD, AGAINST SPIRITUAL WICKEDNESS IN HIGH PLACES (or spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms-NIV).
  
13-WHEREFORE TAKE UNTO YOU (or put on) THE WHOLE ARMOUR OF GOD, THAT YE MAY BE ABLE TO WITHSTAND (or stand your ground) IN THE EVIL DAY, AND HAVING DONE ALL (or everything), TO STAND.
  
14-STAND THEREFORE (firm), HAVING YOUR LOINS GIRT ABOUT WITH TRUTH (or the belt of truth buckled around your waist), AND HAVING ON THE BREASTPLATE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS;
  
15-AND YOUR FEET SHOD (or fitted) WITH THE PREPARATION (or readiness) OF THE GOSPEL OF PEACE;
  
16-ABOVE ALL, TAKING THE SHIELD OF FAITH, WHEREWITH YE SHALL BE ABLE TO QUENCH (or extinguish) ALL THE FIERY DARTS (or flaming arrows) OF THE WICKED.
  
17-AND TAKE THE HELMET OF SALVATION, AND THE SWORD OF THE SPIRIT, WHICH IS THE WORD OF GOD.
  
Please listen carefully to the next verse. SUBMIT YOURSELVES THEREFORE TO GOD. RESIST THE DEVIL, AND HE WILL FLEE FROM YOU-Ja 4:7. Kindly notice that before you resist the devil you must first, SUBMIT YOURSELVESÖTO GOD. How do we do this? By obeying all of Godís Word. Now, the next verse says, DRAW NIGH (near) TO GOD, AND HE WILL DRAW NIGH (near) TO YOU. CLEANSE YOUR HANDS, YE SINNERS; AND PURIFY YOUR HEARTS, YE DOUBLE MINDED. HUMBLE YOURSELVES IN THE SIGHT OF THE LORD, AND HE SHALL LIFT YOU UP-Ja 4:8,10.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

CAN YOU LOSE YOUR SALVATION?
CAN SATAN DRAW YOU AWAY BEFORE YOU ARE EVEN SAVED?
14-THE PARABLE OF THE SOWER

    For it is written, in Lk 8:5-15-A SOWER WENT OUT TO SOW HIS SEED: AND AS HE SOWED,
  
SOME FELL BY THE WAY SIDE; AND IT WAS TRODDEN DOWN, AND THE FOWLS OF THE AIR DEVOURED IT.
  
AND SOME FELL UPON A ROCK; AND AS SOON AS IT WAS SPRUNG UP, IT WITHERED AWAY, BECAUSE IT LACKED MOISTURE. AND SOME FELL AMONG THORNS; AND THE THORNS SPRANG UP WITH IT, AND CHOKED IT. AND OTHER FELL ON GOOD GROUND, AND SPRANG UP, AND BARE FRUIT AN HUNDREDFOLD.
  
AND WHEN HE HAD SAID THESE THINGS, HE CRIED, HE THAT HATH EARS TO HEAR, LET HIM HEAR. AND HIS DISCIPLES ASKED HIM, SAYING, WHAT MIGHT THIS PARABLE BE? AND HE SAID, UNTO YOU IT IS GIVEN TO KNOW THE MYSTERIES OF THE KINGDOM OF GOD: BUT TO OTHERS IN PARABLES; THAT SEEING THEY MIGHT NOT SEE, AND HEARING THEY MIGHT NOT UNDERSTAND. NOW THE PARABLE IS THIS:

15-THE SEED IS THE WORD OF GOD

    1) 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. These appear to have a heart that is not right toward God. They hear the Word, but may respond with hostility. They reject the Word and do not want to hear it. You can feel their hardness when you try to witness to them. They may be hardened by sin, and even enjoy sin. However, chances are, they may think of themselves as good people. If they believe in heaven, they probably think they can enter their own way, by their own acts of righteousness. Because of their hardness, Satan is able to come and take the Word out of their hearts. They are doomed to hell, unless they repent.

    2) 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. Many of these people are what some call "church pew Christians." They may go to church and give their tithes. They listen to the Word, and believe. Nevertheless, their belief does not continue steadfast until the end. God allows us to go through temptations, to see how we will respond. These temptations take many forms. Will we hold fast and trust the Lord, or fall back into unbelief and sin? This may apply to some of you reading this message. You may be receiving the Word with joy; you may be praising God, but will you fall away as temptations come upon you? Do you believe, but refuse to do as God commands? Do you believe, but not obey? You may say you believe, but deny Him by your actions. These people will perish to hell, unless they repent, because their heart is not right toward God. The Word cannot take root and grow. They may appear to be Christians on the outside, but, inwardly, they are not. God searches the hearts. They may deceive some people, but God cannot be mocked. When the time comes that a person searches for God with all their heart, then God will hear from heaven.

    3) AND THAT WHICH FELL AMONG THORNS ARE THEY, WHICH, WHEN THEY HAVE HEARD, GO FORTH, AND ARE CHOKED WITH CARES AND RICHES AND PLEASURES OF THIS LIFE, AND BRING NO FRUIT TO PERFECTION. These people also heard the Word and believed for a time. As the Word began to take root within them and grow, thorns also sprang up with the Word, and choked it. The Word can be choked by the following things.
The first is cares (or worries) of this life. A person may be so worried about his business or job that there is no time to read the Bible. He may be so worried about his wife or girlfriend, that there is no time for the Word. Satan will use these things to you to keep your faith from developing. Are cares or worries of this life hindering your spiritual growth? The Bible tells us to cast our burdens on the Lord. To do this takes faith, which comes from hearing and obeying (doing) the Word. If Satan is able to stop you from getting into the Word, then your faith will not be sufficient to allow you to cast your burdens on the Lord. It is faith that moves God to answer your prayers. The cares and worries of this world hinder your spiritual growth. Satan knows, if he can keep you from reading or hearing the Word (and doing it), he can keep you from growing in faith and may eventually cause you to fall. Without the Word, you cannot stand against Satan. He will use the cares and worries of this life to keep you from the Word as much as possible. Will you let him?
  
The second thing Jesus mentioned is riches. The Bible tells us, THE LOVE OF MONEY IS A ROOT OF ALL KINDS OF EVIL-1 Tim 6:10 NIV. Note it said, the "love of" money. It did not say that the money was evil, but if you trust in it rather than God, how can you be saved? If you love money and riches, these will choke the Word (the seed), that it cannot bear fruit. Are you so busy earning a living, that there is just no time for God in your life? You may hear and believe Godís Word; nevertheless, you also love the riches of this world. You cannot serve two masters. You cannot serve God and this world. You cannot serve both God and money. When a certain merchant came to Jesus and asked what he must do to be saved, one of the things Jesus told him was to sell all that he had. Jesus knew that he loved his possessions more than God, and that this would choke the Word from growing. It is written, SELL ALL THAT THOU HASTÖAND COME AND FOLLOW ME. AND WHEN HE HEARD THIS, HE WAS VERY SORROWFUL: FOR HE WAS VERY RICH-Lk 18:22,23. Is this you? Are the riches of this world choking the Word from growing in you? Do you have to work long hours because you want the "good things of this life"? Does God always seem to take second place? We are to seek "first" the kingdom of God. Are you seeking first the things (the riches) of this world? Oh, what a price to pay! eternity in hell. The third thing Jesus mentioned is pleasures of this life. The Word is choked by pleasures of this life. How much do your enjoy pleasures, such as drugs, drinking, sex, smoking, going to parties, gambling, or lusting after a pretty girl?
  
You may spend 12 or more years educating your mind in the things of this world through school and college. How much time have you spent educating your mind for the world to come through the Bible? How many hours do you spend feeding your spirit with movies or books containing violence, murder, adultery, stealing, and dirty jokes? How can you hope to live a holy life, when you feed your spirit with these things rather than the Word of God? The pleasures of this life take us away from Godís Word. "Hey guys, there is a great movie playing tonight." The Bible gets set aside for the pleasures of this world. God takes second place. Oh, how you may enjoy having sex with that pretty girl. It was just too much to resist as she gave you an invitation. The Bible tells us to, FOLLOWÖHOLINESS, WITHOUT WHICH NO MAN SHALL SEE THE LORD.
  
It may be difficult to give up the "pleasures of this life." Nevertheless, until the day comes that you make God "first" in you life, you are living under the plight of "condemnation." You are destined for hell. You may believe, you may go to church, you may even confess Jesus to people, but have you been able to pull yourself away from ungodly, worldly pleasures? Has the Word taken second place in your life? Does Godís will comes after "your will"? Does Godís will comes after you go to the party, have sex with that person, smoke that cigarette, or drink that beer? Do you defile the temple of the Holy Spirit, which is your body, with all kinds of ungodly things? Donít you know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, if you are saved? However, if you are living in sin (the ungodly, pleasures of this world), you are not saved. The Scriptures tells us, NO ONE WHO CONTINUES TO SIN HAS EITHER SEEN HIM OR KNOWN HIM-1 Jn 3:6 NIV. Are you so busy with the cares (worries), riches, and pleasures of this life that you bring no fruit to perfection (your fruit never ripens)? Are you saving souls? You may witness for Jesus, but do you actually lead people to Jesus? Your fruit will never ripen when too many other things come first. The tree that never receives water, will surely die.

    4) BUT THAT (the Word) ON THE GOOD GROUND ARE THEY, WHICH IN AN HONEST AND GOOD HEART, HAVING HEARD THE WORD, KEEP IT, AND BRING FORTH FRUIT WITH PATIENCE. The Scriptures are showing us, that only these few continue in the faith. All the rest eventually fall. The Bible tells us, HE THAT SHALL ENDURE UNTO THE END, THE SAME SHALL BE SAVED-Mt 24:13. Only this last group bears good fruit. This fourth group heard the Word. Then, they obeyed it and kept it. They grounded themselves in the Word, looking forward to that blessed hope which is soon to come. They watched for Jesus, eagerly waiting. They did not live for this world, but for the world to come. These "few" suffered persecutions for Jesus. People mocked them and thought they were crazy. The world told these people, "Live for Ďnow.í Enjoy yourself! Life is short." But this fourth group did not listen. They followed Jesus. They would not follow a strangerís voice (Satan and the people of this world). Many of these people lost their friends; wives or husbands may have left them. They may have been fired from their jobs. Some even died for the name of "Jesus." They were told not to teach in the name of "Jesus." But no matter what happened, they held fast to the Word which was in their hearts. Satan tempted them in nearly every way possible. They were tempted with the cares (worries) of this world, with the lusts and pleasures of this life. They were tempted with riches. Indeed, they faced many trials and temptations, but chose to stand on the Rock, and that Rock is Jesus. They obeyed the Word. They followed Jesus, no matter what. Their suffering was great. Then the great day comes when all are judged. Those that fell back into the world will now pay for their disobedience to the Creator. The price is hell for eternity. Nevertheless, the small fourth group, the "few" that suffered for Jesus with a good and honest heart, their fruit ripened, and bear fruit an hundredfold. These people will stand in the presence of the Savior, as He may say, "Well done, thou good and faithful servant." They suffered persecutions for a season to gain eternity in heaven. The others enjoyed sin for a season, and gained eternity in hell. This is the choice God gives to you.

   Would you say, that these people were probably saved (as they believed), but later fell away when they were tempted, thus losing their salvation? Or would you conclude that they never had salvation to begin with?

16-THE WILDERNESS MESSAGE, IN BRIEF

    Before God will let you into heaven, He wants to see if you will follow "His will" on this earth. The Bible tells us, IT CAME TO PASS, WHEN PHARAOH HAD LET THE PEOPLE GO, THAT GOD LED THEM NOT THROUGH THE WAY OF THE LAND OF THE PHILISTINES, ALTHOUGH THAT WAS NEAR; FOR GOD SAID, LEST PERADVENTURE THE PEOPLE REPENT WHEN THEY SEE WAR, AND THEY RETURN TO EGYPT: BUT GOD LED THE PEOPLE ABOUT, THROUGH THE WAY OF THE WILDERNESS OF THE RED SEA: AND THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL WENT UP HARNESSED OUT OF THE LAND OF EGYPT. AND THE LORD WENT BEFORE THEM BY DAY IN A PILLAR OF A CLOUD, TO LEAD THEM THE WAY; AND BY NIGHT IN A PILLAR OF FIRE, TO GIVE THEM LIGHT; TO GO BY DAY AND NIGHT-Ex 13:17,18,21. AND THE LORD HARDENED THE HEART OF PHARAOH KING OF EGYPT, AND HE PURSUED AFTER THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL: AND THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL WENT OUT WITH AN HIGH HAND. AND WHEN PHARAOH DREW NIGH, THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL LIFTED UP THEIR EYES, AND, BEHOLD, THE EGYPTIANS MARCHED AFTER THEM; AND THEY WERE SORE AFRAID: AND THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL CRIED OUT UNTO THE LORD. AND THEY SAID UNTO MOSES, BECAUSE THERE WERE NO GRAVES IN EGYPT, HAST THOU TAKEN US AWAY TO DIE IN THE WILDERNESS? WHEREFORE HAST THOU DEALT THUS WITH US, TO CARRY US FORTH OUT OF EGYPT? IS NOT THIS THE WORD THAT WE DID TELL THEE IN EGYPT, SAYING, LET US ALONE, THAT WE MAY SERVE THE EGYPTIANS? FOR IT HAD BEEN BETTER FOR US TO SERVE THE EGYPTIANS, THAN THAT WE SHOULD DIE IN THE WILDERNESS. AND MOSES SAID UNTO THE PEOPLE, FEAR YE NOT, STAND STILL, AND SEE THE SALVATION OF THE LORD, WHICH HE WILL SHOW TO YOU TODAY: FOR THE EGYPTIANS WHOM YE HAVE SEEN TODAY, YE SHALL SEE THEM AGAIN NO MORE FOR EVER. THE LORD SHALL FIGHT FOR YOU, AND YE SHALL HOLD YOUR PEACE-Ex 14:8,10-14.
  
AND MOSES STRETCHED OUT HIS HAND OVER THE SEA; AND THE LORD CAUSED THE SEA TO GO BACK BY A STRONG EAST WIND ALL THAT NIGHT, AND MADE THE SEA DRY LAND, AND THE WATERS WERE DIVIDED. AND THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL WENT INTO THE MIDST OF THE SEA UPON THE DRY GROUND: AND THE WATERS WERE A WALL UNTO THEM ON THEIR RIGHT HAND, AND ON THEIR LEFT. AND THE EGYPTIANS PURSUED, AND WENT IN AFTER THEM TO THE MIDST OF THE SEA, EVEN ALL PHARAOHíS HORSES, HIS CHARIOTS, AND HIS HORSEMEN. AND IT CAME TO PASS, THAT IN THE MORNING WATCH THE LORD LOOKED UNTO THE HOST OF THE EGYPTIANS THROUGH THE PILLAR OF FIRE AND OF THE CLOUD, AND TROUBLED THE HOST OF THE EGYPTIANS, AND TOOK OFF THEIR CHARIOT WHEELS, THAT THEY DROVE THEM HEAVILY: SO THAT THE EGYPTIANS SAID, LET US FLEE FROM THE FACE OF ISRAEL; FOR THE LORD FIGHTETH FOR THEM AGAINST THE EGYPTIANS. AND THE LORD SAID UNTO MOSES, STRETCH OUT THINE HAND OVER THE SEA, THAT THE WATERS MAY COME AGAIN UPON THE EGYPTIANS, UPON THEIR CHARIOTS, AND UPON THEIR HORSEMEN. AND MOSES STRETCHED FORTH HIS HAND OVER THE SEA, AND THE SEA RETURNED TO HIS STRENGTH WHEN THE MORNING APPEARED; AND THE EGYPTIANS FLED AGAINST IT; AND THE LORD OVERTHREW THE EGYPTIANS IN THE MIDST OF THE SEA. AND THE WATERS RETURNED, AND COVERED THE CHARIOTS, AND THE HORSEMEN, AND ALL THE HOST OF PHARAOH THAT CAME INTO THE SEA AFTER THEM; THERE REMAINED NOT SO MUCH AS ONE OF THEM. AND ISRAEL SAW THAT GREAT WORK WHICH THE LORD DID UPON THE EGYPTIANS: AND THE PEOPLE FEARED THE LORD, AND BELIEVED THE LORD, AND HIS SERVANT MOSES-Ex 14:21-28,31.
  
Note, as in the parable of the sower, the people believed. The Bible also tells us they were baptized by going into the sea and coming out. MOREOVER, BRETHREN, I WOULD NOT THAT YE SHOULD BE IGNORANT, HOW THAT ALL OUR FATHERS WERE UNDER THE CLOUD, AND ALL PASSED THROUGH THE SEA; AND WERE ALL BAPTIZED UNTO MOSES IN THE CLOUD AND IN THE SEA-1 Cor 10:1,2. BY FAITH THEY PASSED THROUGH THE RED SEA AS BY DRY LAND-Heb 11:29. We note that they believed, had faith, and were baptized. Now, testing and temptations will begin to see if they will follow God or fall away into disobedience.

    The Scripture says that the LORD IS A MAN OF WAR: THE LORD IS HIS NAME-Ex 15:3. SO MOSES BROUGHT ISRAEL FROM THE RED SEA, AND THEY WENT OUT INTO THE WILDERNESS OF SHUR; AND THEY WENT THREE DAYS IN THE WILDERNESS, AND FOUND NO WATER. AND WHEN THEY CAME TO MARAH, THEY COULD NOT DRINK OF THE WATERS OF MARAH, FOR THEY WERE BITTER: THEREFORE THE NAME OF IT WAS CALLED MARAH. AND THE PEOPLE MURMURED AGAINST MOSES, SAYING, WHAT SHALL WE DRINK? AND HE CRIED UNTO THE LORD; AND THE LORD SHOWED HIM A TREE, WHICH WHEN HE HAD CAST INTO THE WATERS, THE WATERS WERE MADE SWEET: THERE HE MADE FOR THEM A STATUTE AND AN ORDINANCE, AND THERE HE PROVED THEM, AND SAID, IF THOU WILT DILIGENTLY HEARKEN TO THE VOICE OF THE LORD THY GOD, AND WILT DO THAT WHICH IS RIGHT IN HIS SIGHT, AND WILT GIVE EAR TO HIS COMMANDMENTS, AND KEEP ALL HIS STATUTES, I WILL PUT NONE OF THESE DISEASES UPON THEE, WHICH I HAVE BROUGHT UPON THE EGYPTIANS: FOR I AM THE LORD THAT HEALETH THEE-Ex 15:22-26.
  
AND THEY TOOK THEIR JOURNEY FROM ELIM, ANDÖCAME UNTO THE WILDERNESS OF SIN...ON THE FIFTEENTH DAY OF THE SECOND MONTH AFTER THEIR DEPARTING OUT OF THE LAND OF EGYPT. AND THE WHOLE CONGREGATION OF THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL MURMURED AGAINST MOSES AND AARON IN THE WILDERNESS: AND THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL SAID UNTO THEM, WOULD TO GOD WE HAD DIED BY THE HAND OF THE LORD IN THE LAND OF EGYPT, WHEN WE SAT BY THE FLESH POTS, AND WHEN WE DID EAT BREAD TO THE FULL; FOR YE HAVE BROUGHT US FORTH INTO THIS WILDERNESS, TO KILL THIS WHOLE ASSEMBLY WITH HUNGER. THEN SAID THE LORD UNTO MOSES, BEHOLD, I WILL RAIN BREAD FROM HEAVEN FOR YOU; AND THE PEOPLE SHALL GO OUT AND GATHER A CERTAIN RATE EVERY DAY, THAT I MAY PROVE THEM (I will see if they will follow my instructions), WHETHER THEY WILL WALK IN MY LAW, OR NO. This verse explains why you undergo testing, hardships, and trials. If you will not walk in Godís law now (obey the Gospel), then you will never enter heaven. If you will not obey God now, you probably would not obey God when you are in heaven. After all, Satan and his angels refused to obey God. You see, our time here on earth is a time of testing for each of us. Who will you obey? God will find out. Will you obey God or Satan? By not obeying God, you are obeying Satan. You will spend eternity with the one whom you now choose to follow. If you are reading this now, when the judgment comes, you cannot say you did not.

    AND IT SHALL COME TO PASS, THAT ON THE SIXTH DAY THEY SHALL PREPARE THAT WHICH THEY BRING IN; AND IT SHALL BE TWICE AS MUCH AS THEY GATHER DAILY. AND MOSES AND AARON SAID UNTO ALL THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL, AT EVEN, THEN YE SHALL KNOW THAT THE LORD HATH BROUGHT YOU OUT FROM THE LAND OF EGYPT: AND IN THE MORNING, THEN YE SHALL SEE THE GLORY OF THE LORD; FOR THAT HE HEARETH YOUR MURMURINGS AGAINST THE LORD: AND WHAT ARE WE, THAT YE MURMUR AGAINST US? AND MOSES SAID, THIS SHALL BE, WHEN THE LORD SHALL GIVE YOU IN THE EVENING FLESH TO EAT, AND IN THE MORNING BREAD TO THE FULL; FOR THAT THE LORD HEARETH YOUR MURMURINGS WHICH YE MURMUR AGAINST HIM: AND WHAT ARE WE? YOUR MURMURINGS ARE NOT AGAINST US, BUT AGAINST THE LORD-Ex 16:1-8. AND IT CAME TO PASS, AS AARON SPAKE UNTO THE WHOLE CONGREGATION OF THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL, THAT THEY LOOKED TOWARD THE WILDERNESS, AND, BEHOLD, THE GLORY OF THE LORD APPEARED IN THE CLOUD. AND THE LORD SPAKE UNTO MOSES, SAYING, I HAVE HEARD THE MURMURINGS OF THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL: SPEAK UNTO THEM, SAYING, AT EVEN YE SHALL EAT FLESH, AND IN THE MORNING YE SHALL BE FILLED WITH BREAD; AND YE SHALL KNOW THAT I AM THE LORD YOUR GOD. AND IT CAME TO PASS, THAT AT EVEN THE QUAILS CAME UP, AND COVERED THE CAMP: AND IN THE MORNING THE DEW LAY ROUND ABOUT THE HOST. AND WHEN THE DEW THAT LAY WAS GONE UP, BEHOLD, UPON THE FACE OF THE WILDERNESS THERE LAY A SMALL ROUND THING, AS SMALL AS THE HOAR FROST ON THE GROUND. AND WHEN THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL SAW IT, THEY SAID ONE TO ANOTHER, IT IS MANNA; FOR THEY WIST NOT WHAT IT WAS. AND MOSES SAID UNTO THEM, THIS IS THE BREAD WHICH THE LORD HATH GIVEN YOU TO EAT. THIS IS THE THING WHICH THE LORD HATH COMMANDED, GATHER OF IT EVERY MAN ACCORDING TO HIS EATING, AN OMER FOR EVERY MAN, ACCORDING TO THE NUMBER OF YOUR PERSONS; TAKE YE EVERY MAN FOR THEM WHICH ARE IN HIS TENTS. AND MOSES SAID, LET NO MAN LEAVE OF IT TILL THE MORNING.
  
NOTWITHSTANDING THEY HEARKENED NOT UNTO MOSES; BUT SOME OF THEM LEFT OF IT UNTIL THE MORNING, AND IT BRED WORMS, AND STANK: AND MOSES WAS WROTH WITH THEM. AND IT CAME TO PASS, THAT ON THE SIXTH DAY THEY GATHERED TWICE AS MUCH BREAD, TWO OMERS FOR ONE MAN: AND ALL THE RULERS OF THE CONGREGATION CAME AND TOLD MOSES. AND HE SAID UNTO THEM, THIS IS THAT WHICH THE LORD HATH SAID, TOMORROW IS THE REST OF THE HOLY SABBATH UNTO THE LORD: BAKE THAT WHICH YE WILL BAKE TODAY, AND SEETHE THAT YE WILL SEETHE; AND THAT WHICH REMAINETH OVER LAY UP FOR YOU TO BE KEPT UNTIL THE MORNING. AND THEY LAID IT UP TILL THE MORNING, AS MOSES BADE: AND IT DID NOT STINK, NEITHER WAS THERE ANY WORM THEREIN. AND MOSES SAID, EAT THAT TODAY; FOR TODAY IS A SABBATH UNTO THE LORD: TODAY YE SHALL NOT FIND IT IN THE FIELD. SIX DAYS YE SHALL GATHER IT; BUT ON THE SEVENTH DAY, WHICH IS THE SABBATH, IN IT THERE SHALL BE NONE. AND IT CAME TO PASS, THAT THERE WENT OUT SOME OF THE PEOPLE ON THE SEVENTH DAY FOR TO GATHER, AND THEY FOUND NONE. AND THE LORD SAID UNTO MOSES, HOW LONG REFUSE YE TO KEEP MY COMMANDMENTS AND MY LAWS?-Ex 16:10-16,19,20,22-28.
  
You are being asked by the Lord the same thing. How long will you refuse to keep the commandments of the Bible? Jesus said, IF YE LOVE ME, KEEP MY COMMANDMENTS-Jn 14:15. By this Gospel you are saved. If you refuse to obey Godís Word, you will surely perish in eternal fire. THE FEAR OF THE LORD IS THE BEGINNING OF KNOWLEDGE-Pv 1:7.

   MANNAÖIT WAS LIKE CORIANDER SEED, WHITE; AND THE TASTE OF IT WAS LIKE WAFERS MADE WITH HONEY-Ex 16:31.
  
AND ALL THE CONGREGATION OF THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL JOURNEYED FROM THE WILDERNESS OF SINÖAND PITCHED IN REPHIDIM: AND THERE WAS NO WATER FOR THE PEOPLE TO DRINK. WHEREFORE THE PEOPLE DID CHIDE (quarreled) WITH MOSES, AND SAID, GIVE US WATER THAT WE MAY DRINK. AND MOSES SAID UNTO THEM, WHY CHIDE YE WITH ME? WHEREFORE DO YE TEMPT THE LORD? AND THE PEOPLE THIRSTED THERE FOR WATER; AND THE PEOPLE MURMURED AGAINST MOSES, AND SAID, WHEREFORE IS THIS THAT THOU HAST BROUGHT US UP OUT OF EGYPT, TO KILL US AND OUR CHILDREN AND OUR CATTLE WITH THIRST? AND MOSES CRIED UNTO THE LORD, SAYING, WHAT SHALL I DO UNTO THIS PEOPLE? THEY BE ALMOST READY TO STONE ME. Even after the Lord had done great miracles for the children of Israel, still they murmured against Him. They had little faith. Is this you? AND THE LORD SAID UNTO MOSES, GO ON BEFORE THE PEOPLE, AND TAKE WITH THEE OF THE ELDERS OF ISRAEL; AND THY ROD, WHEREWITH THOU SMOTEST THE RIVER, TAKE IN THINE HAND, AND GO.
  
BEHOLD, I WILL STAND BEFORE THEE THERE UPON THE ROCK IN HOREB; AND THOU SHALT SMITE THE ROCK, AND THERE SHALL COME WATER OUT OF IT, THAT THE PEOPLE MAY DRINK. AND MOSES DID SO IN THE SIGHT OF THE ELDERS OF ISRAEL. AND HE CALLED THE NAME OF THE PLACE MASSAH, AND MERIBAH, BECAUSE OF THE CHIDING OF THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL, AND BECAUSE THEY TEMPTED THE LORD, SAYING, IS THE LORD AMONG US, OR NOT?-Ex 17:1-7. How often do we do this same thing, when situations seem to be going badly? Do you say, "Is the Lord with me?" and tempt the Lord?

    AND MOSES SAID UNTO THE PEOPLE, FEAR NOT: FOR GOD IS COME TO PROVE YOU (test you), AND THAT HIS FEAR MAY BE BEFORE YOUR FACES, THAT YE SIN NOT-Ex 20:20. AND MOSES WENT INTO THE MIDST OF THE CLOUD, AND GAT HIM UP INTO THE MOUNT: AND MOSES WAS IN THE MOUNT FORTY DAYS AND FORTY NIGHTS-Ex 24:18. AND WHEN THE PEOPLE SAW THAT MOSES DELAYED TO COME DOWN OUT OF THE MOUNT, THE PEOPLE GATHERED THEMSELVES TOGETHER UNTO AARON, AND SAID UNTO HIM, UP, MAKE US GODS, WHICH SHALL GO BEFORE US; FOR AS FOR THIS MOSES, THE MAN THAT BROUGHT US UP OUT OF THE LAND OF EGYPT, WE WOT (know) NOT WHAT IS BECOME OF HIM. AND THE LORD SAID UNTO MOSES, GO, GET THEE DOWN; FOR THY PEOPLE, WHICH THOU BROUGHTEST OUT OF THE LAND OF EGYPT, HAVE CORRUPTED THEMSELVES: THEY HAVE TURNED ASIDE QUICKLY OUT OF THE WAY WHICH I COMMANDED THEM: THEY HAVE MADE THEM A MOLTEN CALF, AND HAVE WORSHIPPED IT, AND HAVE SACRIFICED THEREUNTO, AND SAID, THESE BE THY GODS, O ISRAEL, WHICH HAVE BROUGHT THEE UP OUT OF THE LAND OF EGYPT. AND THE LORD SAID UNTO MOSES, I HAVE SEEN THIS PEOPLE, AND, BEHOLD, IT IS A STIFFNECKED PEOPLE: AND IT CAME TO PASS, AS SOON AS HE CAME NIGH UNTO THE CAMP, THAT HE SAW THE CALF, AND THE DANCING: AND MOSESí ANGER WAXED HOT, AND HE CAST THE TABLES OUT OF HIS HANDS, AND BRAKE THEM BENEATH THE MOUNT. AND HE TOOK THE CALF WHICH THEY HAD MADE, AND BURNT IT IN THE FIRE, AND GROUND IT TO POWDER, AND STRAWED IT (scattered it) UPON THE WATER, AND MADE THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL DRINK OF IT. AND MOSES SAID UNTO AARON, WHAT DID THIS PEOPLE UNTO THEE, THAT THOU HAST BROUGHT SO GREAT A SIN UPON THEM? AND AARON SAID, LET NOT THE ANGER OF MY LORD WAX HOT: THOU KNOWEST THE PEOPLE, THAT THEY ARE SET ON MISCHIEF-Ex 32:1,7-9,19-22.
  
You that are reading or hearing this message, are you the same way? Are you set on mischief rather than obeying God? AND IT CAME TO PASS ON THE MORROW, THAT MOSES SAID UNTO THE PEOPLE, YE HAVE SINNED A GREAT SIN: AND NOW I WILL GO UP UNTO THE LORD; PERADVENTURE I SHALL MAKE AN ATONEMENT FOR YOUR SIN. AND MOSES RETURNED UNTO THE LORD, AND SAID, OH, THIS PEOPLE HAVE SINNED A GREAT SIN, AND HAVE MADE THEM GODS OF GOLD. YET NOW, IF THOU WILT FORGIVE THEIR SINó AND IF NOT, BLOT ME, I PRAY THEE, OUT OF THY BOOK WHICH THOU HAST WRITTEN. AND THE LORD SAID UNTO MOSES, WHOSOEVER HATH SINNED AGAINST ME, HIM WILL I BLOT OUT OF MY BOOK. THEREFORE NOW GO, LEAD THE PEOPLE UNTO THE PLACE OF WHICH I HAVE SPOKEN UNTO THEE: BEHOLD, MINE ANGEL SHALL GO BEFORE THEE: NEVERTHELESS IN THE DAY WHEN I VISIT I WILL VISIT THEIR SIN UPON THEM-Ex 32: 30-34.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

17-WHY GOD ALLOWS TRIALS AND TESTING: PERSECUTIONS WE MAY GO THROUGH

    Many ministers these days preach that we just need to accept Jesus as our Savior and everything will be fine. In reality, when we receive Jesus as our Lord and follow the Scriptures in obedience, our problems are just beginning; HOWEVER, we have the assurance of knowing that He will be with us. But why does God allow these things to happen to us? Listen to God, as He speaks to you through His Word.
  
As the children of Israel wandered in the wilderness, it is written, YOUR CLOTHES DID NOT WEAR OUT AND YOUR FEET DID NOT SWELL DURING THESE FORTY YEARS-Deut 8:4 NIV. THOU SHALT ALSO CONSIDER IN THINE HEART, THAT, AS A MAN CHASTENETH HIS SON, SO THE LORD THY GOD CHASTENETH THEE-Deut 8:5.
  
Those who love God and obey the Gospel are told, MARVEL NOT, MY BRETHREN, IF THE WORLD HATE YOU-1 Jn 3:13. WE MUST GO THROUGH MANY HARDSHIPS TO ENTER THE KINGDOM OF GOD-Acts 14:22 NIV. ENDURE HARDNESS (hardship), AS A GOOD SOLDIER OF JESUS CHRIST-2 Tim 2:3. REMEMBER JESUS CHRIST, RAISED FROM THE DEAD, DESCENDED FROM DAVID. THIS IS MY GOSPEL, FOR WHICH I AM SUFFERING EVEN TO THE POINT OF BEING CHAINED LIKE A CRIMINAL. BUT GODíS WORD IS NOT CHAINED-2 Tim 2:8 NIV.
  
IF WE SUFFER, WE SHALL ALSO REIGN WITH HIM: IF WE DENY HIM, HE ALSO WILL DENY US-2 Tim 2:12. YEA, AND ALL THAT WILL LIVE GODLY IN CHRIST JESUS SHALL SUFFER PERSECUTION-2 Tim 3:12. FOR UNTO YOU IT IS GIVEN IN THE BEHALF OF CHRIST, NOT ONLY TO BELIEVE ON HIM, BUT ALSO TO SUFFER FOR HIS SAKE-Phili 1:29. MY SON, DO NOT MAKE LIGHT OF THE LORDíS DISCIPLINE, AND DO NOT LOSE HEART WHEN HE REBUKES YOU, BECAUSE THE LORD DISCIPLINES THOSE HE LOVES, AND HE PUNISHES EVERYONE HE ACCEPTS AS A SON. ENDURE HARDSHIP AS DISCIPLINE; GOD IS TREATING YOU AS SONS. FOR WHAT SON IS NOT DISCIPLINED BY HIS FATHER?-Heb 12:5-7 NIV. OUR FATHERS DISCIPLINED US FOR A LITTLE WHILE AS THEY THOUGHT BEST; BUT GOD DISCIPLINES US FOR OUR GOOD, THAT WE MAY SHARE IN HIS HOLINESS. NO DISCIPLINE SEEMS PLEASANT AT THE TIME, BUT PAINFUL. LATER ON, HOWEVER, IT PRODUCES A HARVEST OF RIGHTEOUSNESS AND PEACE FOR THOSE WHO HAVE BEEN TRAINED BY IT-Heb 12:10-11 NIV.

    As the parable of the sower explained, through temptations, cares, pleasures, riches, and lusts, many will fall away. God will lovingly discipline them that they might share in His holiness. However, the faith of some will not be sufficient to endure the many hardships that will come on them. They will fall back into disobedience and away from serving the Lord. So it will be during the Tribulation. When it comes time to take the mark of the beast or be beheaded, most will give in and take the mark. This will condemn them to eternal damnation. Jesus tells us, AS MANY AS I LOVE, I REBUKE AND CHASTEN-Rev 3:19.
  
Which do you choose, to suffer for Jesus or enjoy the pleasures of sin? What did Moses do? He chose RATHER TO SUFFER AFFLICTION WITH THE PEOPLE OF GOD, THAN TO ENJOY THE PLEASURES OF SIN FOR A SEASON-Heb 11:25.
  
It is also written, MY BRETHREN, COUNT IT ALL JOY WHEN YE FALL INTO DIVERS TEMPTATIONS; KNOWING THIS, THAT THE TRYING OF YOUR FAITH WORKETH PATIENCE-Ja 1:2,3. BELOVED, THINK IT NOT STRANGE CONCERNING THE FIERY TRIAL WHICH IS TO TRY YOU, AS THOUGH SOME STRANGE THING HAPPENED UNTO YOU: BUT REJOICE, INASMUCH AS YE ARE PARTAKERS OF CHRISTíS SUFFERINGS; THAT, WHEN HIS GLORY SHALL BE REVEALED, YE MAY BE GLAD ALSO WITH EXCEEDING JOY-1 Pe 4:12,13. YET IF ANY MAN SUFFER AS A CHRISTIAN, LET HIM NOT BE ASHAMED; BUT LET HIM GLORIFY GOD ON THIS BEHALF. FOR THE TIME IS COME THAT JUDGMENT MUST BEGIN AT THE HOUSE OF GOD: AND IF IT FIRST BEGIN AT US, WHAT SHALL THE END BE OF THEM THAT OBEY NOT THE GOSPEL OF GOD?-1 Pe 4:16,17. IN THIS YOU GREATLY REJOICE, THOUGH NOW FOR A LITTLE WHILE YOU MAY HAVE HAD TO SUFFER GRIEF IN ALL KINDS OF TRIALS. THESE HAVE COME SO THAT YOUR FAITHóOF GREATER WORTH THAN GOLD, WHICH PERISHES EVEN THOUGH REFINED BY FIREóMAY BE PROVED GENUINE AND MAY RESULT IN PRAISE, GLORY AND HONOR WHEN JESUS CHRIST IS REVEALED-1 Pe 1:6,7 NIV. Did you hear that? Temptations and trials come to prove your faith genuine.

    Many people say they believe in Jesus, but when the trials come, they fall away. A personís faith may prompt him to serve Jesus in obedience to the Gospel, but as that person is serving the Lord, persecutions come on him. Finally, the person eases off working for Jesus and goes back to hearing the Word only. Their faith was not genuine. It was shallow. Real faith will stand any test. God forbid, that it should happen, but consider: What if someone put a gun to the head of your wife, husband, or parents, and said, "I am going to pull the trigger unless you forsake working for Jesus"? What would you do? Would you give in to this demand and forsake your calling? True faith will not give in. True faith will obey the Gospel. Faith without works is dead. It is by faith that you are saved. It is by faith that you stand firm. It is through works that your faith is made perfect.
  
Jesus wants us to know THESE THINGS, SO THAT IN ME (Jesus) YOU MAY HAVE PEACE. IN THIS WORLD YOU WILL HAVE TROUBLE. BUT TAKE HEART! I HAVE OVERCOME THE WORLD-Jn 16:33 NIV.
  
AND WHEN THEY HAD CALLED THE APOSTLES, AND BEATEN THEM, THEY COMMANDED THAT THEY SHOULD NOT SPEAK IN THE NAME OF JESUS, AND LET THEM GO. AND THEY DEPARTED FROM THE PRESENCE OF THE COUNCIL, REJOICING THAT THEY WERE COUNTED WORTHY TO SUFFER SHAME FOR HIS NAME. Would you continue preaching, if you had just been beaten and commanded to stop? AND DAILY IN THE TEMPLE, AND IN EVERY HOUSE, THEY CEASED NOT TO TEACH AND PREACH JESUS CHRIST-Acts 5:40-42.
  
BLESSED ARE THEY WHICH ARE PERSECUTED FOR RIGHTEOUSNESSí SAKE: FOR THEIRS IS THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN. BLESSED ARE YE, WHEN MEN SHALL REVILE YOU (insult you), AND PERSECUTE YOU, AND SHALL SAY ALL MANNER OF EVIL AGAINST YOU FALSELY, FOR MY SAKE. REJOICE, AND BE EXCEEDING GLAD: FOR GREAT IS YOUR REWARD IN HEAVEN: FOR SO PERSECUTED THEY THE PROPHETS WHICH WERE BEFORE YOU-Mt 5:10-12. AS IT IS WRITTEN, FOR THY SAKE WE ARE KILLED ALL THE DAY LONG; WE ARE ACCOUNTED AS SHEEP FOR THE SLAUGHTER-Ro 8:36.
  
IF THE WORLD HATE YOU, YE KNOW THAT IT HATED ME BEFORE IT HATED YOU-Jn 15:18. IF THEY HAVE PERSECUTED ME, THEY WILL ALSO PERSECUTE YOU-Jn 15:20. WEEPING MAY ENDURE FOR A NIGHT, BUT JOY COMETH IN THE MORNING-Ps 30:5.
  
It is written, REMEMBER THOSE EARLIER DAYS AFTER YOU HAD RECEIVED THE LIGHT (received Jesus), WHEN YOU STOOD YOUR GROUND IN A GREAT CONTEST IN THE FACE OF SUFFERING. SOMETIMES YOU WERE PUBLICLY EXPOSED TO INSULT AND PERSECUTION; AT OTHER TIMES YOU STOOD SIDE BY SIDE WITH THOSE WHO WERE SO TREATED. YOU SYMPATHIZED WITH THOSE IN PRISON AND JOYFULLY ACCEPTED THE CONFISCATION OF YOUR PROPERTY, BECAUSE YOU KNEW THAT YOU YOURSELVES HAD BETTER AND LASTING POSSESSIONS-Heb 10:32-34 NIV. TO THIS VERY HOUR WE GO HUNGRY AND THIRSTY, WE ARE IN RAGS, WE ARE BRUTALLY TREATED, WE ARE HOMELESS. WE WORK HARD WITH OUR OWN HANDS. WHEN WE ARE CURSED, WE BLESS; WHEN WE ARE PERSECUTED, WE ENDURE IT; WHEN WE ARE SLANDERED, WE ANSWER KINDLY-1 Cor 4:11-13 NIV. WE ARE HARD PRESSED ON EVERY SIDE, BUT NOT CRUSHED; PERPLEXED, BUT NOT IN DESPAIR; PERSECUTED, BUT NOT ABANDONED; STRUCK DOWN, BUT NOT DESTROYED. WE ALWAYS CARRY AROUND IN OUR BODY THE DEATH OF JESUS, SO THAT THE LIFE OF JESUS MAY ALSO BE REVEALED IN OUR BODY. FOR WE WHO ARE ALIVE ARE ALWAYS BEING GIVEN OVER TO DEATH FOR JESUSí SAKE, SO THAT HIS LIFE MAY BE REVEALED IN OUR MORTAL BODY-2 Cor 4:8-11 NIV.
  
Indeed, the Bible tells us what a real servant of God is. How many of you would be willing to become a "real servant of God"? Listen, as Paul speaks. RATHER, AS SERVANTS OF GOD, WE COMMEND OURSELVES IN EVERY WAY: IN GREAT ENDURANCE; IN TROUBLES, HARDSHIPS AND DISTRESSES; IN BEATINGS, IMPRISONMENTS AND RIOTS; IN HARD WORK, SLEEPLESS NIGHTS AND HUNGER; IN PURITY, UNDERSTANDING, PATIENCE AND KINDNESS; IN THE HOLY SPIRIT AND IN SINCERE LOVE; IN TRUTHFUL SPEECH AND IN THE POWER OF GOD; WITH WEAPONS OF RIGHTEOUSNESS IN THE RIGHT HAND AND IN THE LEFT; THROUGH GLORY AND DISHONOR, BAD REPORT AND GOOD REPORT; GENUINE, YET REGARDED AS IMPOSTORS; KNOWN, YET REGARDED AS UNKNOWN; DYING, AND YET WE LIVE ON; BEATEN, AND YET NOT KILLED; SORROWFUL, YET ALWAYS REJOICING; POOR, YET MAKING MANY RICH; HAVING NOTHING, AND YET POSSESSING EVERYTHING-2 Cor 6:4-10 NIV.

    Are you a real servant of God? ARE THEY MINISTERS OF CHRIST? (I SPEAK AS A FOOL) I AM MORE; IN LABOURS MORE ABUNDANT, IN STRIPES ABOVE MEASURE, IN PRISONS MORE FREQUENT, IN DEATHS OFT (again and again). OF THE JEWS FIVE TIMES RECEIVED I FORTY STRIPES SAVE ONE. THRICE WAS I BEATEN WITH RODS, ONCE WAS I STONED, THRICE I SUFFERED SHIPWRECK, A NIGHT AND A DAY I HAVE BEEN IN THE DEEP (open sea); IN JOURNEYINGS OFTEN, IN PERILS OF WATERS, IN PERILS OF ROBBERS, IN PERILS BY MINE OWN COUNTRYMEN, IN PERILS BY THE HEATHEN, IN PERILS IN THE CITY, IN PERILS IN THE WILDERNESS, IN PERILS IN THE SEA, IN PERILS AMONG FALSE BRETHREN-2 Cor 11:23-26. AND LEST I SHOULD BE EXALTED ABOVE MEASURE THROUGH THE ABUNDANCE OF THE REVELATIONS, THERE WAS GIVEN TO ME A THORN IN THE FLESH, THE MESSENGER OF SATAN TO BUFFET ME, LEST I SHOULD BE EXALTED ABOVE MEASURE. FOR THIS THING I BESOUGHT THE LORD THRICE, THAT IT MIGHT DEPART FROM ME. AND HE SAID UNTO ME, MY GRACE IS SUFFICIENT FOR THEE: FOR MY STRENGTH IS MADE PERFECT IN WEAKNESSÖ.THEREFORE I TAKE PLEASURE IN INFIRMITIES, IN REPROACHES, IN NECESSITIES, IN PERSECUTIONS, IN DISTRESSES FOR CHRISTíS SAKE: FOR WHEN I AM WEAK, THEN AM I STRONG-2 Cor 12:7-10. FOR I RECKON THAT THE SUFFERINGS OF THIS PRESENT TIME ARE NOT WORTHY TO BE COMPARED WITH THE GLORY WHICH SHALL BE REVEALED IN US-Ro 8:18.
  
The sufferings we endure for Jesus, no matter how bad, are not worthy to be compared with the glory that shall be revealed. THEREFORE, AMONG GODíS CHURCHES WE BOAST ABOUT YOUR PERSEVERANCE AND FAITH IN ALL THE PERSECUTIONS AND TRIALS YOU ARE ENDURING-2 Thes 1:4 NIV. WHEN THEY HURLED THEIR INSULTS AT HIM (Jesus), HE DID NOT RETALIATE; WHEN HE SUFFERED, HE MADE NO THREATS. INSTEAD, HE ENTRUSTED HIMSELF TO HIM WHO JUDGES JUSTLY-1 Pe 2:23 NIV. FOR IN THAT HE HIMSELF HATH SUFFERED BEING TEMPTED, HE IS ABLE TO SUCCOUR THEM (come to the aid of them) THAT ARE TEMPTED-Heb 2:18. AND THE GOD OF ALL GRACE, WHO CALLED YOU TO HIS ETERNAL GLORY IN CHRIST, AFTER YOU HAVE SUFFERED A LITTLE WHILE (note-after you have suffered a little while), WILL HIMSELF RESTORE YOU AND MAKE YOU STRONG, FIRM AND STEADFAST-1 Pe 5:10 NIV. AND THE LORD SHALL DELIVER ME FROM EVERY EVIL WORK, AND WILL PRESERVE ME UNTO HIS HEAVENLY KINGDOM-2 Tim 4:18. WHEREFORE LET HIM THAT THINKETH HE STANDETH TAKE HEED LEST HE FALL. THERE HATH NO TEMPTATION TAKEN YOU BUT SUCH AS IS COMMON TO MAN: BUT GOD IS FAITHFUL, WHO WILL NOT SUFFER YOU TO BE TEMPTED ABOVE THAT YE ARE ABLE; BUT WILL WITH THE TEMPTATION ALSO MAKE A WAY TO ESCAPE, THAT YE MAY BE ABLE TO BEAR IT-1 Cor 10:12,13. AND YE SHALL BE HATED OF ALL MEN FOR MY NAMEíS SAKE: BUT HE THAT ENDURETH TO THE END SHALL BE SAVED-Mt 10:22. BLESSED IS THE MAN THAT ENDURETH TEMPTATION: FOR WHEN HE IS TRIED, HE SHALL RECEIVE THE CROWN OF LIFE, WHICH THE LORD HATH PROMISED TO THEM THAT LOVE HIM-Ja 1:12.

    What do we say, when a person receives Jesus as their Savior, then follows in obedience to scriptural baptism and appears to be serving the Lord? If he falls away under the temptations and trials that come upon him, was he truly saved? Did he lose his salvation? Did he ever have salvation in the first place (as he did not continue steadfast till the end)?

    So, what is this faith by which we hold firm till the end? The Scriptures tell us, NOW FAITH IS THE SUBSTANCE OF THINGS HOPED FOR, THE EVIDENCE OF THINGS NOT SEEN-Heb 11:1.

18-SEVEN BROTHERS WITH THEIR MOTHER

    It happened, that seven brothers with their mother were arrested and tortured with whips and scourges by the king, to force them to eat pork, in violation of Godís law. One of the brothers, speaking for the others, said, "What do you expect to achieve by questioning us? We are ready to die, rather than transgress the laws of our ancestors." At that, the king in a fury, gave orders to have pans and caldrons heated. While they were being quickly heated, he commanded his executioners to cut off the hands and feet of the one that spoke, while his mother and brothers looked on. When he was completely maimed but still breathing, the king ordered them to carry him to the fire and fry him. As a cloud of smoke spread from the pan, the brothers and their mother encouraged one another to die bravely, saying such words as these, "The Lord God is looking on, and He truly has compassion on us. As Moses declared in his canticle (song), when he protested openly with the words, ĎAnd He will have pity on His servants.í"
  
When the first brother died in this manner, they brought the second to be made sport of. After tearing off the skin and hair of his head, they asked him, "Will you eat the pork, rather than have your body tortured limb by limb?" Answering in the language of his forefathers, he said, "Never!" So he too, suffered the same torture as the first. At the point of death, he said, "You are depriving us of this present life, but the King of the world will raise us up to live again forever. It is for His laws that we are dying."
  
After him, the third suffered their cruel sport. He put out his tongue at once, when they told him to do so, and bravely held out his hands. He spoke these noble words. "It was from heaven that I received these, for the sake of His laws I disdain them. From Him, I hope to receive them again." Even the king and his attendants marveled at the young manís courage, because he regarded his sufferings as nothing. After he died, they tortured and maltreated the fourth brother in the same way. When he was near death, he said, "It is my choice to die at the hands of men, with the God given hope of being restored to life by Him; but for you, there will be no resurrection to life." Next, they brought forward the fifth brother and maltreated him. After him, they brought the sixth brother.
  
Most admirable and worthy of everlasting remembrance was the mother. She saw her seven sons perish in a single day, yet bore it courageously because of her hope in the Lord. Do you have that kind of faith? Very soon, the Tribulation will be upon all the unbelievers and those with lukewarm faith. Are you ready, if Jesus returned right now? Are you really saved?

19-THREE POSITIONS ON LOSING SALVATION

    As we mentioned earlier, there seem to be three positions which are being taught among various denominations, regarding losing salvation. The first position teaches that once you say a sinnerís prayer, you are eternally saved. You can do anything you wish. No matter what sin you commit, you will go to heaven. Just say a prayer, and everything will be all right. We have seen very clearly in the previous pages that this is not true. Being saved involves believing with thine heart, confessing Jesus publicly, and following the Gospel in obedience. This includes water baptism by immersion in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost after a person believes and repents. We are careful to point out, that we are saved by grace through faith. Also, that grace comes from "faith in Jesus Christ," the only begotten Son of God. However, with that faith, goes an obligation of obedience. As it is written, IF YOU LOVE ME, KEEP MY COMMANDMENTS-Jn 14:15. If a person believes, does that mean he will also be obedient? The answer is not always. That may surprise you. The Bible tells us, MANY BELIEVED ON HIM; BUT BECAUSE OF (or for fear of) THE PHARISEES THEY DID NOT CONFESS HIM, LEST THEY SHOULD BE PUT OUT OF THE SYNAGOGUE: FOR THEY LOVED THE PRAISE OF MEN MORE THAN THE PRAISE OF GOD-Jn 12:42,43. Therefore, the Bible does not support this position.
  
Jesus paid the price of "grace," totally and completely, when He died on the cross for our sins and rose again from the dead. However, for a person to receive God's "grace" by only believing or saying a prayer is not sufficient, if that is as far as it goes.
  
In the previous pages, we have examined how to be saved and how to determine by Godís Word whether or not you really are "saved." We have also seen that true believers that are working for Jesus will be persecuted. It is written, ALL THAT WILL LIVE GODLY IN CHRIST JESUS, SHALL SUFFER PERSECUTION-2 Tim 3:12. Godís Word leaves no room for exceptions. Through persecutions, your faith will be tried to see if it is genuine. Some will fall by the wayside, as the parable of the sower explained. Despite persecutions, temptations, and trials, some will mature and produce fruit.

    The second position presents the question, were these people ever saved? This line of thought maintains that once you are saved, you can never lose your salvation.
  
However, salvation is not as easy as simply saying a prayer. A person must come by faith in Jesus Christ and with repentance. With the prayer, goes a commitment of obedience to Jesus Christ. Even though the person said a prayer, if they do not continue steadfast in the faith, then it was never a true conversion. If the person goes back into willful, intentional sin and rebellion against God and His Word, the person was never truly born-again. If a person's fruits do not bear witness, then they were never born-again. There are many Scriptures to support this position, as we hope to cover.
  
However, some would say the person was saved and he can never fall. Some would also say that a person in this church age cannot ever commit the unforgivable sin and that they can even turn from trusting God and commit suicide and still go to heaven.

    The third position teaches that you can be saved by faith, but if you stray and go back into willful, intentional sin and rebellion against God and His Word, and do not repent, you can lose your salvation. It teaches that if your faith fails for an extended period of time, you can fall and you will perish. This third line of thought teaches that once you are saved, you can turn your back on God and walk away from Him. If you walk too far, you can lose your salvation.

20-FEW CHANGE THEIR POSITION,  SOME SAY THESE THINGS

    We might ask, how can both the second and third positions stand on Scripture? Surely, one is correct, and one is wrong. If you have attended a certain church, you generally believe the way the church teaches. If you have attended a theology school, you usually graduate from that school convinced that the position they teach is biblically correct.
  
From this point on, it is nearly impossible to ever change a person's mind. A preacher who has been taught the doctrine that you cannot lose your salvation, will seldom ever change his position. A preacher grounded in the position that you can lose your salvation, will rarely ever change. If they change, they would have to admit that their church, or preacher, or theology school was in error. How many are willing to do this? Remember what the religious leaders did to Jesus when He told them they were wrong? They crucified Him. Right now, if Jesus Christ Himself walked into many churches and began teaching doctrine (the Bible), the preachers, priests, or rabbi would most likely ask Him to leave. They might even try to have Him arrested. They might think He was an impostor, as His doctrine might be different from theirs. Most preachers, priests, and rabbi are so sure they are perfect in their theology, that it is next to impossible to change them. Show them the Word, and they may brush it aside, saying, "It doesnít really mean what it says," or "I don't see it that way," or "Thatís your interpretation." A standard statement is, "You are taking Scripture out of context."

    There is only one way to find out what God teaches on a certain subject. That way is to take every single verse in the Bible on a specific subject, put them together, and God in His great mercy will give the answer. The Bible teaches to ask God for wisdom-ref Ja 1:5, not another man. That is why the ministry which is sending you these courses, and has spent many, many hours dividing the Bible up into subjects. What does the Bible say on baptism? There are over 100 verses dealing with this subject. What does the Bible say about the Rapture? There are over 150 verses on this subject. What does the Bible say about the latter days? There about 3000 verses on this subject. What does the Bible say about losing salvation? This should be answered further on in this book. We are not to follow a denominational doctrine, but the whole counsel of God (the Bible). Each subject, we trust, is presented with the Scriptures, and given in fear and trembling-ref Isa 66:2,5. Godís Word tells us, to speak and do as they that shall be judged-ref Ja 2:12. Knowing therefore THE TERROR OF THE LORD, WE PERSUADE MEN-2 Cor 5:11. We do our best (as God leads) to address each topic with Scripture, not manís opinion. Manís opinion is often wrong, but Godís Word is perfect. Which do you follow: a denomination, a manís opinion, or Godís Word? The answer that your denomination, your preacher, priest, or rabbi, only teaches the Bible may not be valid. How can you make such a statement, unless you have spent a great deal of time in humbleness before the Lord, searching the Scriptures "yourself," and then asking what they believe? In addition, surveys have shown that many, even the majority of preachers, do not completely believe everything in the Bible. The blind lead the blind, and they both fall into the ditch-ref Mt 15:14.
  
Others might be told, "Just be confirmed, and you are saved. Just be loyal to a certain religion or denomination. Donít worry; when judgment comes, all will be okay. At worst, you will only go to purgatory." People follow these false doctrines. They do not understand, until it is too late. They are cast into the lake of fire screaming "But my priest, rabbi, or preacher told me all would be okay." They will have eternity to think about the mistake of following incorrect, religious doctrine, rather than Godís perfect Word.

21-THE SECOND POSITION IN DETAIL: ONCE SAVED, ALWAYS SAVED

    There are many Scriptures which support this position. Regretfully, there are many times when this doctrine is not told in its completeness. Often religious leaders will tell their congregations, "Donít worry about a thing. You are eternally saved." They seem to forget to tell them, they are eternally saved (IF) they hold steadfast to the end the faith they had at the beginning. Even though they themselves understand that repentance (turning from sin) is part of being saved; they may fail to convey this to their congregation. They attempt to build the faith of their people, by saying, "Once saved, always saved." They forget that faith does not come from their words, but from Godís exact Word. Faith does not come from our opinion of the Word; as it is written, FAITH COMETH BY HEARING, AND HEARING BY THE WORD OF GOD-Ro 10:17. It is Godís Word that is a double-edged sword, not our well meaning opinions. Often they forget to tell people that FAITH WITHOUT WORKS IS DEAD-Ja 2:20. And that BY WORKS FAITH (is) MADE PERFECT-Ja 2:22. Too many times, people are misled into believing they are secure, and go right back into sin. Thus, as we have already seen from the Scriptures, their faith did not prove to be genuine. We, who are given a trust (that trust is the Word), must always be careful to use it correctly, lest we put a stumbling block in a personís path even though it was not intended.
  
Let us now search the Scriptures that seem to support the view that salvation cannot be lost. Jesus said, YE HAVE NEITHER HEARD HIS VOICE AT ANY TIME, NOR SEEN HIS SHAPE (this would indicate a person was never saved, not that he lost salvation) AND YE HAVE NOT HIS WORD ABIDING IN YOU-Jn 5:37,38. They are not saved, as Godís Word is not "in" them. Remember, faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God. It is BY THIS GOSPEL YE ARE SAVED-1 Cor 15:2 NIV. If Godís Word does not abide in you, you have never been saved.
  
It is written, MANY WILL SAY TO ME IN THAT DAY, LORD, LORD (saying they had accepted Jesus as their Saviour), HAVE WE NOT PROPHESIED IN THY NAME (this indicates that they had spiritual gifts, perhaps prophesying and speaking in tongues)? AND IN THY NAME HAVE CAST OUT DEVILS (could they be preachers or evangelists)? AND IN THY NAME DONE MANY WONDERFUL WORKS (this indicates those who trusted in works to save themselves, rather than the cleansing blood of Jesus Christ)? These people are standing at the judgment, and seem to believe they are saved. Perhaps their preacher told them, "Once saved, always save," and "Donít worry about it." It sounds as if they are trying to argue with their Creator. Perhaps they failed to remember, we are called for obedience to Jesus. They believed, and received Jesus as their Saviour; but He professes UNTO THEM, I NEVER KNEW YOU (Jesus never accepted them) DEPART FROM ME (why?), YE THAT WORK INIQUITY-Mt 7:22,23. They had not followed the Scriptures in obedience. They had not given up all willful sin in their life. They may have followed Jesus with their outward actions and words, but, inwardly, they still lived in sin. They were not willing to truly repent. Note, the Scripture says, I NEVER KNEW YOU. This would seem to indicate that they did not have an intimate relationship with Jesus. They did many wonderful works in Jesusí name, but they did not seem to delight in knowing Him. Please take note of this Scripture, as we may refer to it again near the end of the text.
  
It is also written, THEY WENT OUT FROM US, BUT THEY WERE NOT OF US: FOR IF THEY HAD BEEN OF US, THEY WOULD NO DOUBT HAVE CONTINUED WITH US: BUT THEY WENT OUT, THAT THEY MIGHT BE MADE MANIFEST THAT THEY WERE NOT ALL OF US-1 Jn 2:19. Again, we see an example of people that appeared to be saved. THEY WENT OUT FROM US (but as Godís Word points out), THEY WERE NOT OF US. These were pretending Christians. Many may have professed Jesus. They may have even worked for Jesus. Yet, they did not continue steadfast till the end. They were not saved. These people may have appeared to be saved, but they were not truly saved, as the Scripture shows. FOR WHOSOEVER SHALL CALL UPON THE NAME OF THE LORD SHALL BE SAVED-Ro 10:13. How do we call on the name of the Lord? Perhaps Ro 10:9-11; Acts 2:38; Ps 145:18; and Heb 5:9, can give some of the answer to this question.

    The Scripture says, I WILL NEVER LEAVE THEE, NOR FORSAKE THEE-Heb 13:5. One might say, "See, that shows once we are saved, we can never lose salvation."
  
NOW UNTO HIM THAT IS ABLE TO KEEP YOU FROM FALLING, AND TO PRESENT YOU FAULTLESS BEFORE THE PRESENCE OF HIS GLORY WITH EXCEEDING JOY-Jude 24. Again, because He is able to keep you from falling, many believe this shows you cannot lose your salvation.
  
The Bible tells us, NEVERTHELESS THE FOUNDATION OF GOD STANDETH SURE, HAVING THIS SEAL, THE LORD KNOWETH THEM THAT ARE HIS. AND, LET EVERY ONE THAT NAMETH THE NAME OF CHRIST DEPART FROM INIQUITY-2 Tim 2:19. Because we are sealed, some say, we cannot lose salvation.
  
The Bible shows that the saved ARE KEPT BY THE POWER OF GOD THROUGH FAITH UNTO SALVATION READY TO BE REVEALED IN THE LAST TIME-1 Pe 1:5. Some say, because we are kept by the power of God, we can never lose salvation.
  
FOR WE ARE MEMBERS OF HIS BODY, OF HIS FLESH, AND OF HIS BONES-Eph 5:30. Some say, that because we are members of His body, we cannot become "detached"; therefore, we are eternally secure.
  
FOR I AM PERSUADED, THAT NEITHER DEATH, NOR LIFE, NOR ANGELS, NOR PRINCIPALITIES, NOR POWERS, NOR THINGS PRESENT, NOR THINGS TO COME, NOR HEIGHT, NOR DEPTH, NOR ANY OTHER CREATURE, SHALL BE ABLE TO SEPARATE US FROM THE LOVE OF GOD, WHICH IS IN CHRIST JESUS OUR LORD-Ro 8:38,39. Some say that this teaches eternal security, and that there is nothing that can cause us to fall.
  
MY SHEEP HEAR MY VOICE, AND I KNOW THEM, AND THEY FOLLOW ME: AND I GIVE UNTO THEM ETERNAL LIFE; AND THEY SHALL NEVER PERISH, NEITHER SHALL ANY MAN PLUCK THEM OUT OF MY HAND. MY FATHER, WHICH GAVE THEM ME, IS GREATER THAN ALL; AND NO MAN IS ABLE TO PLUCK THEM OUT OF MY FATHERíS HAND-Jn 10:27-29. Some would say, because no man can pluck them out of the Father's hand, that a person can never fall from salvation.
  
BUT NOW THUS SAITH THE LORD THAT CREATED THEE, O JACOB, AND HE THAT FORMED THEE, O ISRAEL, FEAR NOT: FOR I HAVE REDEEMED THEE, I HAVE CALLED THEE BY THY NAME; THOU ART MINE. WHEN THOU PASSEST THROUGH THE WATERS, I WILL BE WITH THEE; AND THROUGH THE RIVERS, THEY SHALL NOT OVERFLOW THEE: WHEN THOU WALKEST THROUGH THE FIRE, THOU SHALT NOT BE BURNED; NEITHER SHALL THE FLAME KINDLE UPON THEE-Isa 43:1,2. Some would say that this proves we can never lose salvation.
  
WHO SHALL SEPARATE US FROM THE LOVE OF CHRIST? SHALL TRIBULATION, OR DISTRESS, OR PERSECUTION, OR FAMINE, OR NAKEDNESS, OR PERIL, OR SWORD?-Ro 8:35. Some would say this teaches that once we are saved, that it is impossible for us to be separated from Christ.
  
AND THIS IS THE FATHERíS WILL WHICH HATH SENT ME, THAT OF ALL WHICH HE HATH GIVEN ME I SHOULD LOSE NOTHING, BUT SHOULD RAISE IT UP AGAIN AT THE LAST DAY. AND THIS IS THE WILL OF HIM THAT SENT ME, THAT EVERY ONE WHICH SEETH THE SON, AND BELIEVETH ON HIM, "MAY" HAVE EVERLASTING LIFE: AND I WILL RAISE HIM UP AT THE LAST DAY-Jn 6:39,40. Some would say, this proves that a person can never fall once they are saved.
  
AND GRIEVE NOT THE HOLY SPIRIT OF GOD, WHEREBY YE ARE SEALED UNTO THE DAY OF REDEMPTION-Eph 4:30. Again, once a person is sealed, some believe this proves a person can never be unsealed.
  
(FOR HE SAITH, I HAVE HEARD THEE IN A TIME ACCEPTED, AND IN THE DAY OF SALVATION HAVE I SUCCOURED THEE: BEHOLD, NOW IS THE ACCEPTED TIME; BEHOLD, NOW IS THE DAY OF SALVATION)-2 Cor 6:2. Some would say this proves that once a person is saved, he can never fall.
  
ELECT ACCORDING TO THE FOREKNOWLEDGE OF GOD THE FATHER, THROUGH SANCTIFICATION OF THE SPIRIT, UNTO OBEDIENCE AND SPRINKLING OF THE BLOOD OF JESUS CHRIST-1 Pe 1:2. Some would say that every person that gets saved is of the elect, and thus can never fall.
  
ACCORDING AS HE HATH CHOSEN US IN HIM BEFORE THE FOUNDATION OF THE WORLD, THAT WE SHOULD BE HOLY AND WITHOUT BLAME BEFORE HIM IN LOVE: HAVING PREDESTINATED US UNTO THE ADOPTION OF CHILDREN BY JESUS CHRIST TO HIMSELF, ACCORDING TO THE GOOD PLEASURE OF HIS WILL-Eph 1:4,5. Some would say that every person that becomes saved is one that has been chosen, and thus he can never fall.

    As we study these Scriptures, it seems to appear that once a person is truly saved, he is indeed kept by the power of God. His salvation is secure. It must be pointed out, however, that being saved is not just saying a prayer. It involves a total uncompromising commitment of love and obedience. Indeed, a very great error is made by some, as we have covered in previous pages; thus, it bears mentioning again. They say, all one has to do is to say the sinnerís prayer, and he is eternally saved. He cannot lose his salvation. It is often the case, that he is not really saved at all. This can lead a person into a false sense of security. The person now believes he is saved, and can do whatever he wishes. Then, the judgment comes. He may stand in front of his Creator, and say, "But my preacher told me this or that." It is too late. He is cast into the lake of fire that burns forever. Do not believe everything your preacher says. Believe only Godís Word. It is by the Gospel that you are saved, not manís opinions.
  
The Bible commands us to, SEARCH THE SCRIPTURES FOR IN THEM YE THINK YE HAVE ETERNAL LIFE-Jn 5:39. EXAMINE YOURSELVES, WHETHER YE BE IN THE FAITH; PROVE YOUR OWN SELVES. KNOW YE NOT YOUR OWN SELVES, HOW THAT JESUS CHRIST IS IN YOU, EXCEPT YE BE REPROBATES (fail the test)?-2 Cor 13:5.
  
Let the Word of God be your teacher. Let the Holy Spirit give you understanding. Ask the Lord to open your understanding of His Word, instead of relying upon another personís opinion or interpretation.

22-THE THIRD POSITION IN DETAIL:
SALVATION CAN BE LOST, A PERSON CAN FALL FROM GRACE

    There is an abundance of Scripture to support this position also. The third position teaches that you can be saved by faith (perhaps even winning souls to Jesus), but if you stray and go back into willful, intentional sin and rebellion against God and His Word, and do not repent, that you can lose your salvation.
  
It teaches, that if your faith fails for an extended period of time, you can fall and you will perish, because we stand BY FAITH. This third line of thought teaches that once you are saved, you can turn your back on God, and walk away from Him. If you walk too far, you can lose your salvation.
  
Generally, the people that expound this position, also say that there is more to being saved than simply saying a prayer, but not always. To be saved, it is written, REPENT. It is written, Mark 16:16-HE THAT BELIEVETH AND IS BAPTIZED SHALL BE SAVED; BUT HE THAT BELIEVETH NOT SHALL BE DAMNED.
  
Let us examine the Scriptures regarding this.

    We recall how the children of Israel were saved. They believed and were baptized; yet they turned from God. They fell into unbelief and perished. They were A GENERATION THAT SET NOT THEIR HEART ARIGHT, AND WHOSE SPIRIT WAS NOT STEADFAST WITH GOD-Ps 78:8. We note, SPIRIT WAS NOT STEADFAST WITH GOD.
  
In the parable of the ten virgins, the oil represents the Holy Spirit. THE FOOLISH SAID UNTO THE WISE, GIVE US OF YOUR OIL; FOR OUR LAMPS ARE GONE OUT-Mt 25:8. Does this mean that the Holy Spirit has been quenched?
  
For He said, SURELY THEY ARE MY PEOPLE, CHILDREN THAT WILL NOT LIE: SO HE WAS THEIR SAVIOUR. IN ALL THEIR AFFLICTION HE WAS AFFLICTED, AND THE ANGEL OF HIS PRESENCE SAVED THEM: IN HIS LOVE AND IN HIS PITY HE REDEEMED THEM; AND HE BARE THEM, AND CARRIED THEM ALL THE DAYS OF OLD. BUT THEY REBELLED, AND VEXED HIS HOLY SPIRIT: THEREFORE HE WAS TURNED TO BE THEIR ENEMY, AND HE FOUGHT AGAINST THEM-Isa 63:8-10. Note, it says, HE WAS THEIR SAVIOUR...HE REDEEMED THEM...BUT THEY REBELLED...HE WAS TURNED TO BE THEIR ENEMY.

    When the people had sinned, Moses said to God, YET NOW, IF THOU WILT FORGIVE THEIR SIN; AND IF NOT, BLOT ME, I PRAY THEE, OUT OF THY BOOK WHICH THOU HAST WRITTEN. AND THE LORD SAID UNTO MOSES, WHOSOEVER HATH SINNED AGAINST ME, HIM WILL I BLOT OUT OF MY BOOK-Ex 32:32,33. Most should agree, that if we are saved, our name is written in the "book of life." But David said, LET THEM BE BLOTTED OUT OF THE BOOK OF THE LIVING, AND NOT BE WRITTEN WITH THE RIGHTEOUS-Ps 69:28. LET HIS POSTERITY BE CUT OFF; AND IN THE GENERATION FOLLOWING LET THEIR NAME BE BLOTTED OUT. LET THE INIQUITY OF HIS FATHERS BE REMEMBERED WITH THE LORD; AND LET NOT THE SIN OF HIS MOTHER BE BLOTTED OUT-Ps 109:13,14. If one could not lose salvation, how could their name be blotted out?
  
Samuel said to Saul, WHEREFORE THEN DOST THOU ASK OF ME, SEEING THE LORD IS DEPARTED FROM THEE, AND IS BECOME THINE ENEMY? BECAUSE THOU OBEYEDST NOT THE VOICE OF THE LORD-1 Sam 28:16,18. Saul did not obey the voice of the Lord, and the Lord departed from him. Oh, how often it seems we forget the final commandment of Jesus to TEACH ALL NATIONS, BAPTIZING THEMÖANDÖTEACHING THEM TO OBSERVE (obey) ALL THINGS WHATSOEVER I HAVE COMMANDED YOU-Mt 28:19,20.

    It is written, THE LORD IS WITH YOU, WHILE YE BE WITH HIM; AND IF YE SEEK HIM, HE WILL BE FOUND OF YOU; BUT IF YE FORSAKE HIM, HE WILL FORSAKE YOU-2 Chr 15:2.
  
BUT IF YOU TURN AWAY AND FORSAKE THE DECREES AND COMMANDS I HAVE GIVEN YOU AND GO OFF TO SERVE OTHER GODS AND WORSHIP THEM, THEN I WILL UPROOT ISRAEL FROM MY LAND, WHICH I HAVE GIVEN THEM-2 Chr 7:19,20 NIV. It said, IF YOU TURN AWAY.
  
It is also written, KISS THE SON, LEST HE BE ANGRY, AND YE PERISH FROM THE WAY, WHEN HIS WRATH IS KINDLED BUT A LITTLE-Ps 2:12. We see the words of God, YE PERISH FROM THE WAY. Could this mean, ye perish or fall from being saved?

23-THE THIRD POSITION CONTINUES

    Jesus said, YE ARE THE SALT OF THE EARTH (indicating they were saved): BUT IF THE SALT HAVE LOST HIS SAVOR (or if their light went out) (or if you can no longer distinguish a difference between the born-again person and the unsaved), WHEREWITH SHALL IT BE SALTED? IT IS THENCEFORTH GOOD FOR NOTHING, BUT TO BE CAST OUT, AND TO BE TRODDEN UNDER FOOT OF MEN-Mt 5:13. IT IS NEITHER FIT FOR THE LAND, NOR YET FOR THE DUNGHILL (manure pile); BUT MEN CAST IT OUT-Lk 14:35. Born-again Christians are the light of the earth. But if the Christians have lost their "faith" (their light has gone out), how can they get their faith back (their light back; the Holy Spirit)?
  
It is written, I AM THE TRUE VINE, AND MY FATHER IS THE HUSBANDMAN. EVERY BRANCH IN ME THAT BEARETH NOT FRUIT HE TAKETH AWAY: AND EVERY BRANCH THAT BEARETH FRUIT, HE PURGETH IT, THAT IT MAY BRING FORTH MORE FRUIT. NOW YE ARE CLEAN THROUGH THE WORD WHICH I HAVE SPOKEN UNTO YOU. 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 I ME. I AM THE VINE, YE ARE THE BRANCHES: HE THAT ABIDETH IN ME, AND I IN HIM, THE SAME BRINGETH FORTH MUCH FRUIT: FOR WITHOUT ME YE CAN DO NOTHING. IF A MAN ABIDE NOT IN ME, HE IS CAST FORTH AS A BRANCH, AND IS WITHERED; AND MEN GATHER THEM, AND CAST THEM INTO THE FIRE, AND THEY ARE BURNED-Jn 15:1-6. Let us take a look at this briefly. EVERY BRANCH IN ME (represents a born-again Christian) THAT BEARETH NOT FRUIT (that does not grow in the Word and produce good works for the Lord) HE TAKETH AWAY...AND CAST THEM INTO THE FIRE (the born-again Christians are cut off, and cast into the lake of fire).
  
Jesus further reveals, that AS THE FATHER HATH LOVED ME, SO HAVE I LOVED YOU: CONTINUE YE IN MY LOVE. IF YE KEEP MY COMMANDMENTS, YE SHALL ABIDE IN MY LOVE; EVEN AS I HAVE KEPT MY FATHERíS COMMANDMENTS, AND ABIDE IN HIS LOVE-Jn 15:9,10. Could this be saying, that if you do not keep His commandments, you will not abide in His love? Is Jesus warning us, that if we do not continue in His love, we will be cut off?
  
It is written, BEHOLD THEREFORE THE GOODNESS AND SEVERITY OF GOD: ON THEM WHICH FELL, SEVERITY; BUT TOWARD THEE, GOODNESS, IF THOU CONTINUE IN HIS GOODNESS: OTHERWISE THOU ALSO SHALT BE CUT OFF. AND THEY ALSO, IF THEY ABIDE NOT STILL IN UNBELIEF, SHALL BE GRAFTED IN: FOR GOD IS ABLE TO GRAFT THEM IN AGAIN. FOR IF THOU WERT CUT OUT OF THE OLIVE TREE WHICH IS WILD BY NATURE, AND WERT GRAFTED CONTRARY TO NATURE INTO A GOOD OLIVE TREE: HOW MUCH MORE SHALL THESE, WHICH BE THE NATURAL BRANCHES, BE GRAFTED INTO THEIR OWN OLIVE TREE?-Ro 11:22-24. Behold therefore the goodness and sternness of God. They which fell (into unbelief), were cut off. The children of Israel were saved, as God brought them through the Red Sea. Yet, they were cut off and perished, as they fell back into unbelief and tempted God. They did not continue in His love and goodness. Can a person fall back into unbelief? The answer is absolutely YES. The Scripture tells us, IF THEY DO NOT PERSIST IN UNBELIEF, THEY WILL BE GRAFTED IN, FOR GOD IS ABLE TO GRAFT THEM IN AGAIN-Ro 11:23 NIV. They can fall from salvation, but can get saved and be grafted in again.

24-WHY PARABLES?

    It seems that many of the Scriptures, which tell us we can lose salvation, are in parables. We might wonder why Jesus spoke in parables. He told them, BECAUSE IT IS GIVEN UNTO YOU TO KNOW THE MYSTERIES OF THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN, BUT TO THEM IT IS NOT GIVEN. THEREFORE SPEAK I TO THEM IN PARABLES: BECAUSE THEY SEEING SEE NOT; AND HEARING THEY HEAR NOT, NEITHER DO THEY UNDERSTAND. God is no respecter of men. FOR THIS PEOPLEíS HEART IS WAXED GROSS, AND THEIR EARS ARE DULL OF HEARING, AND THEIR EYES THEY HAVE CLOSED; LEST AT ANY TIME THEY SHOULD SEE WITH THEIR EYES, AND HEAR WITH THEIR EARS, AND SHOULD UNDERSTAND WITH THEIR HEART, AND SHOULD BE CONVERTEDÖBUT BLESSED ARE YOUR EYES, FOR THEY SEE: AND YOUR EARS, FOR THEY HEAR-Mt 13:11,13,15,16. God warned us, that the church of the last days would be neither cold nor hot, but lukewarm-ref Rev 3:16,17. They would be "blind" to the truth, and yet not know it.

    Therefore, let HIM THAT THINKETH HE STANDETH TAKE HEED LEST HE FALL-1 Cor 10:12. Why would a person be warned to take heed, if he could not fall?
   It is by Christís Gospel that YE ARE SAVED, IF YE KEEP IN MEMORY WHAT I PREACHED UNTO YOU, UNLESS YE HAVE BELIEVED IN VAIN-1 Cor 15:2. Paul is warning the brothers in Christ, to take heed, be careful. Ye have believed, he told them. You are saved. Yet, only "if" you keep in memory the Word. If you do not, you have believed in vain, and you will fall.
   LET THAT THEREFORE ABIDE IN YOU, WHICH YE HAVE HEARD FROM THE BEGINNING. IF THAT WHICH YE HAVE HEARD FROM THE BEGINNING SHALL REMAIN IN YOU, YE ALSO SHALL CONTINUE IN THE SON, AND IN THE FATHER-1 Jn 2:24. Again, a warning. The Word must remain in you. If it does, then you will remain in the Son, and in the Father. If it does not, then you will be cut off.
   Paul also said, I KEEP UNDER MY BODY, AND BRING IT INTO SUBJECTION: LEST THAT BY ANY MEANS, WHEN I HAVE PREACHED TO OTHERS, I MYSELF SHOULD BE A CASTAWAY-1 Cor 9:27. Is Paul saying, that even he could be a castaway, or cut off, or disqualified for the prize?

    Again, the Bible warns that in the latter times, SOME SHALL DEPART FROM THE FAITH, GIVING HEED TO SEDUCING SPIRITS, AND DOCTRINES OF DEVILS-1 Tim 4:1. We note, that the Word says- DEPART FROM THE FAITH. These appear to be born-again Christians that departed from the faith, and gave heed to SEDUCING SPIRITS, AND DOCTRINES OF DEVILS. The Bible warns, that if the Word does not remain in us, we will be cut off.
   Another thing Paul tells us, is that CHRIST can BECOME OF NO EFFECT UNTO YOU, WHOSOEVER OF YOU ARE JUSTIFIED BY THE LAW; YE ARE FALLEN FROM GRACE-Gal 5:4. Some, interpret this as saying, the Galatians have fallen away from the message of grace. We must always be careful with the trust that has been given to us. That trust is the Word. Ask God for wisdom, not man. It does clearly say, FALLEN FROM GRACE.
   Next, Peter warns us, saying, YE THEREFORE, BELOVED, SEEING YE KNOW THESE THINGS BEFORE, BEWARE LEST YE ALSO, BEING LED AWAY WITH THE ERROR OF THE WICKED, FALL FROM YOUR OWN STEADFASTNESS-2 Pe 3:17. This message is to born-again believers in Jesus. "BEWARE," that you do not fall from your secure position. No power can snatch us from the loving hand of Jesus. Nevertheless, if we ourselves choose to depart from the faith, then we "FALL FROM" our own steadfastness; we fall from grace. We can be cut off and become a castaway. We have believed in vain. We no longer continue in His love.
   It is written, NOW THE JUST SHALL LIVE BY FAITH: BUT IF ANY MAN DRAW BACK, MY SOUL SHALL HAVE NO PLEASURE IN HIM. BUT WE ARE NOT OF THEM WHO DRAW BACK UNTO PERDITION (and are destroyed); BUT OF THEM THAT BELIEVE TO THE SAVING OF THE SOUL-Heb 10:38,39. We live by faith; but if we draw back from our faith, we will be destroyed, and hell awaits us.
   In the Revelation, Jesus says, NEVERTHELESS I HAVE SOMEWHAT AGAINST THEE, BECAUSE THOU HAST LEFT THY FIRST LOVE. REMEMBER THEREFORE FROM WHENCE THOU ART FALLEN, AND REPENT, AND DO THE FIRST WORKS; OR ELSE I WILL COME UNTO THEE QUICKLY, AND WILL REMOVE THY CANDLESTICK OUT OF HIS PLACE, EXCEPT THOU REPENT-Rev 2:4,5. They had left their first love (Jesus). He tells them, THOU ART FALLEN...REPENT, OR ELSE I WILL COME UNTO THEE QUICKLY, AND WILL REMOVE THY CANDLESTICK...EXCEPT THOU REPENT. They are being warned to repent and return to their first love (Jesus), AND DO THE FIRST WORKS; otherwise, Jesus will come quickly and their candlestick will be removed (they will lose their salvation). God is also warning us, if we stray too far,or for too long, it may be too late.

    It is written, HE THAT OVERCOMETH, THE SAME SHALL BE CLOTHED IN WHITE RAIMENT; AND I WILL NOT BLOT OUT HIS NAME OUT OF THE BOOK OF LIFE, BUT I WILL CONFESS HIS NAME BEFORE MY FATHER, AND BEFORE HIS ANGELS-Rev 3:5. If we do not overcome the world once we are "called or saved," then our name will be removed from the book of life.
   AND IF ANY MAN SHALL TAKE AWAY FROM THE WORDS OF THE BOOK OF THIS PROPHECY, GOD SHALL TAKE AWAY HIS PART OUT OF THE BOOK OF LIFE, AND OUT OF THE HOLY CITY, AND FROM THE THINGS WHICH ARE WRITTEN IN THIS BOOK-Rev 22:19. There is no question, for example, that we can be saved, but if we commit this sin, our name will be removed from the book of life. We have lost our salvation.

    After studying the Scriptures on whether or not you can lose your salvation, there would appear to be no room for doubt. A person can lose his salvation. We have read, however, that there are many other verses which would seem to indicate that we cannot lose our salvation. It almost sounds like there is a contradiction. Yet we know this is not true. There is no contradiction in the Bible.
   As we have studied the many verses, it is easily understood why some people believe one way (on the basis of many verses of Scripture that appear to support their opinion), while others believe another way (also on the basis of many verses of Scripture). Both the doctrines (that you can, or that you cannot lose salvation) tend to be heavily supported by Godís Word. Of course, you will not usually hear a denomination which believes you can lose salvation, quoting the Scriptures that seem to indicate you cannot, and vice versa. The answer to this question lies in Godís Word. However, if you do not have an open mind, which is receptive to Godís Wordóand many people do notóthen you will not understand. For example, if you are from a certain denomination, you are probably convinced that you cannot lose salvation. It may be so deeply rooted, that not even Godís perfect Word speaking to you, would change your mind. In like manner, if you are from another denomination, which believes you can lose your salvation, nothing may be able to change your mind either. This is a big problem and hindrance, when studying Godís Word. If you already know (or think you know) the answer, then how can God correct you? You can only learn from Godís Word when you approach Him with the attitude, "Lord, I donít know. I am looking to You for the answer. Please show me." If you are seeking manís opinion, you will believe as he does. If you are seeking Godís answer with all your heart in reverent submission and with no preconceived opinions, then God will richly reward you and give you "HIS" truth. If you are seeking the answer in a theology school, your opinion will be as theirs is. It may be correct, or it may be wrong. Heavenly Father, please grant each of our readers, an open heart. May the eyes of their understanding be enlightened and may the truth of Your Holy Word clear up all confusion in Jesus name. Amen.

25-THE CONCLUSION: WHO IS RIGHT?
CAN A SAVED PERSON LOSE THEIR SALVATION OR NOT?

    Godís Word gives us the answer, but it may not be what you want to hear. The answer lies not in denominational teachings, but in the perfect Word of God only.

26-MESSAGE TO THE CHURCHES

    To understand why this disagreement has come about, we need to search the Scriptures. The heart of some controversy can be seen in the following:

    But they are really:

    Perhaps, every church would agree with this. They might say, "Yes, that church down the street is all of these things," thinking that most other preachers, rabbi, and priests are teaching wrongly, but not themselves.
  
These Scriptures are talking to each of us. Most are wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked in preaching the Gospel in this generation.
  
These verses in chapter 3 of the Revelation are "to the Bible-teaching churches."
  
These verses are to those who are preaching Godís Word.

   These verses are speaking to each of us, you and me.
  
Yet, listen to Godís Word, as He speaks to us further.

    Did you hear that? The church (including you and me) does not know it is blind!
  
We need to get out of denominational teaching and pray that God will lift this blindness from our eyes. Let us teach the "Word" as found in the entire Gospel, as Jesus did, and as the apostles did. We need to preach the whole message of salvation, not just "say a prayer." In dealing with others who are born-again, let us remember, that as brothers in Christ, we are to love one another and endeavor to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace, without compromising sound doctrine. We must examine all things in light of Godís Word, and be ready and willing to change if we are off course. We are not to judge "another manís servant"; we are not to judge each otherís motives, but we are to expose teachings that are contrary to sound doctrine; however, in so doing, we should be careful, as it may be us who is wrong. With all of our heart, let us dwell in the greatest commandment, the commandment of love. HE THAT HATH AN EAR, LET HIM HEAR-Rev 3:22.

    Yes, blindness is covering Israel, but it is also covering the church of today. As the children of Israel do not know they are blinded, neither do the Bible-believing churches of today. ANOINT THINE EYES WITH EYESALVE, THAT THOU MAYEST SEE-Rev 3:18. Are you of these who will be spewed out?

27-THE STARTLING CONCLUSION: WE ARE SAVEDó"IF"

    It is written, AND YOU, THAT WERE SOMETIME ALIENATED AND ENEMIES IN YOUR MIND BY WICKED WORKS, YET NOW HATH HE RECONCILED IN THE BODY OF HIS FLESH THROUGH DEATH, TO PRESENT YOU HOLY AND UNBLAMEABLE AND UNREPROVABLE IN HIS SIGHT (Paul is speaking to the saved, to the believers. He now gives them a warning): IF YE CONTINUE IN THE FAITH GROUNDED AND SETTLED, AND BE NOT MOVED AWAY FROM THE HOPE OF THE GOSPEL-Col 1:21-23. No guarantees. Just a warning to those who are in the faith. That warning is once you are saved, you can fall away, "if" you do not continue in the faith, grounded and settled. There is also another "if." If you be not moved away from the hope of the Gospel. The key is the word "FAITH." We must also remember, that faith without works is dead. How often do we hear a message on faith with works and obedience? It seems, because so many cults are preaching that works save you, our churches have gone in the opposite direction. We seem to forget that works make faith perfect (or complete). We are not saved by works, but through faith. However, if our faith is not followed by works, there is no faith; and we are lost. The Bible tells us, BUT BE YE DOERS OF THE WORD, AND NOT HEARERS ONLY-Ja 1:22. Paulís message in Col 1:21-23, makes it very clear. You were enemies, but now you are reconciled. You have put off the old and have been renewed. Yes, you are saved, but only "if" you continue in the faith. As we study the messages of the epistles, we see a pattern. You are saved, but do not go back to the way you were, or you will be lost, cut off, and your name removed from the book of life. You are saved; "but if" you return to your old ways, you are lost.
  
As we proceed, we see there is no contradiction. All the verses harmonize perfectly together. All the verses (those that appear to say we can lose our salvation, and those that appear to say we cannot), need to be put together. When this is done, the complete picture is presented. No longer is there "denominational doctrine," but the beauty of Godís Word in perfect harmony and truth.
  
Paul told us in Col 1:22,23-You are RECONCILEDÖTO PRESENT YOU HOLY AND UNBLAMEABLE AND UNREPROVABLE IN HIS SIGHT: IF YE CONTINUE IN THE FAITH. Faith is required to stand.
  
Jesus said, IF YE KEEP MY COMMANDMENTS, YE SHALL ABIDE IN MY LOVE. He is speaking to those who are already saved. As we see Him say in the next verse, THESE THINGS HAVE I SPOKEN UNTO YOU, THAT MY JOY MIGHT REMAIN IN YOU-Jn 15:10,11. If the joy might remain, then they already have it. They are saved. Yet, is not Jesus warning them that they could lose His joy?

    It is written, THIS IS LOVE, THAT WE WALK AFTER HIS COMMANDMENTS-2 Jn 6. BY THIS GOSPEL YOU ARE SAVED, IF YOU HOLD FIRMLY TO THE WORD...OTHERWISE YOU HAVE BELIEVED IN VAIN-1 Cor 15:2 NIV. Again, we see they believed. We see once more, the message, if you do not hold firmly to the Word, then you are lost; you have believed in vain. You may be saved, but you can also fall away and be lost.
  
Another verse warns us to STAND FIRM, THEN, AND DO NOT LET YOURSELVES BE BURDENED AGAIN BY THE YOKE OF SLAVERY-Gal 5:1 NIV. Paul is telling them, it is possible to fall back into the bondage or yoke of slavery to Satan. You were a slave to sin, but now you are free. However, be careful, or you will fall back to where you were.
  
It would have BEEN BETTER FOR THEM NOT TO HAVE KNOWN THE WAY OF RIGHTEOUSNESS (they were saved), THAN, AFTER THEY HAD KNOWN IT, TO TURN FROM THE HOLY COMMANDMENT DELIVERED UNTO THEM. BUT IT IS HAPPENED UNTO THEM ACCORDING TO THE TRUE PROVERB, THE DOG IS TURNED TO HIS OWN VOMIT AGAIN; AND THE SOW THAT WAS WASHED TO HER WALLOWING IN THE MIRE-2 Pe 2:21,22.
  
FOR WE ARE MADE PARTAKERS OF CHRIST, IF WE HOLD THE BEGINNING OF OUR CONFIDENCE STEADFAST UNTO THE END-Heb 3:14. Again, we see the same warning to the believers. We know they were saved, as it said, CONFIDENCE they had, or the faith they had; as it is written, CONFIDENCE BY THE FAITH-Eph 3:12.
  
Note, full assurance and hope are byproducts of faith; FULL ASSURANCE OF FAITH-Heb 10:22; WAIT FOR THE HOPEÖBY FAITH-Gal 5:5; WE ARE SAVED BY HOPE-Ro 8:24. They were warned to hold steadfast unto the end. If they did not, if they fell away, they were not partakers of Christ. They fell back to Satan.
  
Then Jesus said, TO THOSE JEWS WHICH BELIEVED ON HIM (note this is said to believers, to the saved), IF YE CONTINUE IN MY WORD (Jesus was warning them they could fall, if they did not continue in His Word. Even though they believed and were saved, He was telling them to be careful, lest they fall back into unbelief and lose their salvation), THEN ARE YE MY DISCIPLES INDEED-Jn 8:31.
  
AND WE DESIRE THAT EVERY ONE OF YOU DO SHOW THE SAME DILIGENCE TO THE FULL ASSURANCE OF HOPE UNTO THE END: AND SO, AFTER HE HAD PATIENTLY ENDURED, HE OBTAINED THE PROMISE-Heb 6:11,15. Once more, we are being shown that salvation is guaranteed, only to those who hold firm until the very end, the confidence they had at the first. When you first believe, repent, are baptized (by immersion), confess Jesus publicly, and begin the journey of obedience; if through the many trials and tests that come on you (to see if your faith is genuine), you fall away; then the Bible warns, it would have been better for you not to have known the way of righteousness, than after you have known it, to turn away. Jesus warned His followers with this message. The apostles warned their followers. Paul, over and over, warned the believers about losing their faith, thus, losing their salvation. Are you hearing this message?
  
It is written, NOW THE JUST SHALL LIVE BY FAITH (the saved): BUT IF ANY MAN DRAW BACK (Draw back from what? His faith), MY SOUL SHALL HAVE NO PLEASURE IN HIM-Heb 10:38.
  
Again, Jesus tells us, HE THAT ENDURETH TO THE END SHALL BE SAVED-Mt 10:22. We are not born-again at the end are we? Are we not born-again the moment we repent and submit to God's righteousness by faith? Yet, the Scriptures tell us, we are saved IF we endure to the end, IF we do not draw back, and IF we do not fall away. We may be born-again (saved), but if we do not hold firm all the way, we are cut off from the "tree"-ref Ro 11:17-22.
  
WHEREFORE LET HIM THAT THINKETH HE STANDETH TAKE HEED LEST HE FALL-1 Cor 10:12. Fall from what? Fall from his faith, from his salvation back into Satanís domain. But God gives us comfort, as the Scripture says, THERE HATH NO TEMPTATION TAKEN YOU BUT SUCH AS IS COMMON TO MAN: BUT GOD IS FAITHFUL, WHO WILL NOT SUFFER YOU TO BE TEMPTED ABOVE THAT YE ARE ABLE; BUT WILL WITH THE TEMPTATION ALSO MAKE A WAY TO ESCAPE, THAT YE MAY BE ABLE TO BEAR IT-1 Cor 10:13.
  
The key to putting all the verses together is the parable of the sower. Although we have already covered this earlier in the text, you may now have a deeper understanding of the Scriptures. Remember, the key to knowledge is the fear of the Lord. As it is written, THE FEAR OF THE LORD, THAT IS WISDOM; AND TO DEPART FROM EVIL IS UNDERSTANDING-Job 28:28.

28-JESUS EXPLAINS THE PARABLE OF THE SOWER

    A SOWER WENT OUT TO SOW HIS SEED: AND AS HE SOWED, SOME FELL BY THE WAY SIDE; AND IT WAS TRODDEN DOWN, AND THE FOWLS OF THE AIR DEVOURED IT. AND SOME FELL UPON A ROCK; AND AS SOON AS IT WAS SPRUNG UP, IT WITHERED AWAY, BECAUSE IT LACKED MOISTURE. AND SOME FELL AMONG THORNS; AND THE THORNS SPRANG UP WITH IT, AND CHOKED IT. AND OTHER FELL ON GOOD GROUND, AND SPRANG UP, AND BARE FRUIT AN HUNDREDFOLD.

    Then Jesus explains the parable. THE SEED IS THE WORD OF GOD.

    1) 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. These people do not get saved. They refuse to be baptized by immersion, and they are disobedient. They are full of excuses. They might profess to be Christians, but by their actions they deny Him. They wander in darkness, not knowing where they are going, yet feeling secure. They might know the Scriptures (but not obey them), or they may hardly know any Scripture.

    2) 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. These are people who do indeed believe. They receive the Word with joy. They have followed in obedience, to repent and be baptized by immersion. They are born-again. They have received the Holy Spirit. Now, their faith will be tested through temptations, to see if it is genuine. Only those who stand firm to the end will be saved. Time after time, we have seen through the Scriptures a warning. Once you are saved, if you do not stand firm, you will be cut off. Once you are saved, if you give in to temptations, and turn away from God, your name can be taken out of the book of life.

    3) AND THAT WHICH FELL AMONG THORNS ARE THEY, WHICH, WHEN THEY HAVE HEARD, GO FORTH, AND ARE CHOKED WITH CARES AND RICHES AND PLEASURES OF THIS LIFE, AND BRING NO FRUIT TO PERFECTION. These people are also born-again. They hear the Word and receive it. They have begun their journey in obedience. They have repented and been baptized. They are born-again. However, they are choked with the cares of this world; and they fall away. They lose their salvation. They are cut off. They fall from grace. Some fall and are cut off, because of the riches of this world. Some go back into the world because of the pleasures of this life. Study the epistles. Over and over, they warn the believers. The message is frequently repeated in the Scriptures. You are saved. You have faith. You believe. But now, you must hold firm to the confidence which you had in the beginning. But now, you must continue in the faith, grounded and settled. But now, you must not be moved away from the hope of the Gospel. But now, you must keep His commandments. But now, you must hold firmly to the Word; you must continue in His Word. But now, you must show the same diligence, to the full assurance of hope to the end. Finally, you must not draw back. Paul told the believers, that they were BELOVED OF GOD, CALLED TO BE SAINTS-Ro 1:7. But now, watch out. Satan will come and try to draw you away. If you go back into sin, back into the love of this world, back to where you were before you were saved, then you will be cut off. You will lose your salvation and will be worse off than before.

    4) BUT THAT ON THE GOOD GROUND ARE THEY, WHICH IN AN HONEST AND GOOD HEART, HAVING HEARD THE WORD, KEEP IT, AND BRING FORTH FRUIT WITH PATIENCE-Lk 8:5-15. Just a few will make it to this point. Just a few will not fall away. Just a few will find that narrow gate that leads to eternal life.

    The parable of the sower is the key to all the verses we have covered. It provides us with an outline to help us understand Godís marvelous Word.

29-HOW AND WHEN DO WE RECEIVE THE HOLY SPIRIT?

    It is written, BUT THIS SPAKE HE OF THE SPIRIT WHICH THEY THAT BELIEVE ON HIM SHOULD RECEIVE-Jn 7:39. We note, that in number 2 of the parable of the sower, they received the Word with joy. They believe for a while. The New Testament tells us, time after time, when they believed, they were baptized. That baptism was by immersion. They repented, and were baptized. It is written, THAT WE MIGHT RECEIVE THE PROMISE OF THE SPIRIT THROUGH FAITH Gal 3:14. Thus, we have two conditions on receiving the Holy Spirit. Believe, and have faith. It is written, IN WHOM YE ALSO TRUSTED, AFTER THAT YE HEARD THE WORD OF TRUTH, THE GOSPEL OF YOUR SALVATION: IN WHOM ALSO AFTER THAT YE BELIEVED, YE WERE SEALED WITH THAT HOLY SPIRIT OF PROMISE-Eph 1:13. We note again, after ye believed, ye were sealed with the Holy Spirit. Then Peter said unto them, REPENT, AND BE BAPTIZED EVERY ONE OF YOU IN THE NAME OF JESUS CHRIST FOR THE REMISSION OF SINS, AND YE SHALL RECEIVE THE GIFT OF THE HOLY GHOST-Acts 2:38. That gives us 4 conditions to receive the Holy Spirit. Believe, faith, repent, and be baptized.

    In number 2 of the parable of the sower, those who received the Word with joy and believed, received the promised Holy Spirit. We have seen that we must undergo many trials and temptations to prove our faith genuine. Temptations are not for the unsaved, as there is no faith present to prove. Temptations are for the saved: to prove their faith, whether it is strong or weak; to see if they will stand the test, or not; to see if they will be obedient to Godís commands, or not; and to see if they will trust in the Lord, no matter what befalls them. Those in number 2 were saved, but in the time of temptation, they fell away. These were written in the Lambís book of life, but did not stand by faith; they fell from grace.
  
MY LITTLE CHILDREN, OF WHOM I TRAVAIL IN BIRTH AGAIN UNTIL CHRIST BE FORMED IN YOU-Gal 4:19. Your faith will grow in proportion to how much faith food (the Word of God) you put in and the type of heart you have to digest and believe it.
  
It is written, IN WHOM YE ALSO TRUSTED, AFTER THAT YE HEARD THE WORD OF TRUTH, THE GOSPEL OF YOUR SALVATION: IN WHOM ALSO AFTER THAT YE BELIEVED, YE WERE SEALED WITH THAT HOLY SPIRIT OF PROMISE, WHICH IS THE EARNEST OF OUR INHERITANCE UNTIL THE REDEMPTION OF THE PURCHASED POSSESSION, UNTO THE PRAISE OF HIS GLORY-Eph 1:13,14. Please note carefully, YE WERE SEALED WITH THAT HOLY SPIRIT OF PROMISE. What is the Holy Spirit of promise? The next Scripture gives us the answer. WHICH IS THE EARNEST OF OUR INHERITANCE.

30-THE EARNEST OF THE SPIRIT

    "EARNEST" or arrabon, in the original text of the Bible, means money deposited by the purchaser and forfeited if the purchase was not completed. It was thought to be a Phoenician word which was introduced into Greece. In modern Greek, arrabona, is an engagement ring. Regretfully, some modern Bible versions have translated this word incorrectly, which has caused some confusion. The Bible has already given us the formula for completing a purchase. Jesus paid it all; however, the purchase is not complete until WE HOLD THE BEGINNING OF OUR CONFIDENCE STEADFAST UNTO THE END-Heb 3:14. We enter into a contract (a covenant, or solemn agreement) when we receive Jesus as Saviour. Jesus is the Groom, and we are the bride. He has given us a pledge or token of this contract, a ring, in a manner of speaking. We can receive, or reject it. He cannot break His contract with us. He has pledged to marry us. He will never leave or forsake the contract. The price of our purchase has already been paid. Now that we have accepted the terms of the contract, we receive the engagement ring (the Holy Spirit) as a deposit; thus, we are sealed unto Jesus as His bride. During this period of being sealed, many temptations will come against us. When Jesus finally marries us, He wants to be sure we will continue to be faithful, and not try to divorce Him. Remember the fallen angels? Likewise, we also will now have to undergo temptations and tests, to see if our faith and love is real. Will we wait for the Bridegroom no matter what happens? or will we finally get tired of waiting and run off to serve another? We are bought for a price; that price was His death. He purchased us to be His bride. However, we can take off the engagement ring, and say, "We have changed our mind." We can walk away before the "marriage feast of the Lamb." Once we believe, the Lord gives us the Holy Spirit to help us stand firm. He assures us that no temptations will come on us that are more than we can handle. Our love and our faith will undergo testing until the day we die. If we hold firm till the end, then we will be with Him. If we fall away, the engagement ring is forfeited. We cannot keep it, as it is the Holy Spirit Who guarantees we are His. Yet, many do turn their backs on this marriage contract. Many do forfeit the engagement ring. Many do lose the Holy Spirit, and the penalty is death, the lake of fire. Yes, we are saved when we receive the Holy Spirit. We are born-again. Nevertheless, the purchase is not complete until we have finished the race. We must die in faith-ref Heb 11:13.

    Will we stand the test? Will we fight the good fight? Will Jesus say to us, "Well done, good and faithful servant"? We are saved through faith. We receive the Holy Spirit as a deposit. We go through testing and trials, to see if we will hold firm till the end. The few who stand the test, and do not give in to the temptations that come upon them, have a reward waiting, which is beyond anything we can even comprehend. That reward is eternal, everlasting joy. The end result of our obedience is reward beyond our imagination. The end result of disobedience (not waiting for our Groom to come for us) is eternal damnation, everlasting torment, outer darkness, and the lake of fire. Remember, you are purchased by Jesus (Who paid the price), and that purchase is completed at the end, after the trials and tests have come upon you, and after you have stood the test. Do not be deceived. God cannot be mocked. If we do not live for Jesus now, if we do not do what pleases Him now, if we do not remain faithful and true to Him now, then we will not be with Him for the marriage. The choice is yours.
  
It is written, NOW HE THAT HATH WROUGHT US FOR THE SELFSAME THING IS GOD, WHO ALSO HATH GIVEN UNTO US THE EARNEST OF THE SPIRIT-2 Cor 5:5. The Spirit is given unto us as a deposit by the Purchaser (Jesus), and forfeited if the purchase is not completed. NOW HE WHICH STABLISHETH US WITH YOU IN CHRIST, AND HATH ANOINTED, US IS GOD; WHO HATH ALSO SEALED US, AND GIVEN THE EARNEST OF THE SPIRIT IN OUR HEARTS-2 Cor 1:21,22. He has sealed us and given the Spirit as a deposit. Nevertheless, the Spirit is forfeited if the purchase is not completed, that is, if we do not hold steadfast to the end our obedience, which is by faith. We are born-again by the Holy Spirit. As long as we keep our end of the contract, we are kept by the power of God unto the day of redemption.

    The Lord, in His lovingkindness, hath said, SURELY THEY ARE MY PEOPLE, CHILDREN THAT WILL NOT LIE: SO HE WAS THEIR SAVIOUR. IN ALL THEIR AFFLICTION HE WAS AFFLICTED, AND THE ANGEL OF HIS PRESENCE SAVED THEM: IN HIS LOVE AND IN HIS PITY HE REDEEMED THEM; AND HE BARE THEM, AND CARRIED THEM ALL THE DAYS OF OLD. BUT THEY REBELLED, AND VEXED HIS HOLY SPIRIT: THEREFORE HE WAS TURNED TO BE THEIR ENEMY, AND HE FOUGHT AGAINST THEM-Isa 63:8-10. Once we are saved, if we fall away, we have only a small amount of time before our candlestick is removed, before we are cut off, before our name is taken out of the book of life, and the Holy Spirit leaves us. We are warned not to grieve the Holy Spirit, not to tempt the Spirit of the Lord, and not to quench (or put out) the Holy Spirit. It is written, HOW IS IT THAT YE HAVE AGREED TOGETHER TO TEMPT THE SPIRIT OF THE LORD? BEHOLD, THE FEET OF THEM WHICH HAVE BURIED THY HUSBAND ARE AT THE DOOR, AND SHALL CARRY THEE OUT. THEN FELL SHE DOWN STRAIGHTWAY AT HIS FEET, AND YIELDED UP THE GHOST...AND GREAT FEAR CAME UPON ALL THE CHURCH Acts 5:9-11. AND GRIEVE NOT THE HOLY SPIRIT OF GOD, WHEREBY YE ARE SEALED UNTO THE DAY OF REDEMPTION-Eph 4:30. FOR IF YE LIVE AFTER THE FLESH, YE SHALL DIE-Ro 8:13. QUENCH NOT THE SPIRIT-1 Thes 5:19. Do not put the Holy Spirit out.
  
The Bible tells us, that IF WE SIN WILLFULLY AFTER THAT WE HAVE RECEIVED THE KNOWLEDGE OF THE TRUTH, THERE REMAINETH NO MORE SACRIFICE FOR SINS, BUT A CERTAIN FEARFUL LOOKING FOR OF JUDGMENT AND FIERY INDIGNATION, WHICH SHALL DEVOUR THE ADVERSARIES. HE THAT DESPISED MOSESí LAW DIED WITHOUT MERCY UNDER TWO OR THREE WITNESSES: OF HOW MUCH SORER PUNISHMENT, SUPPOSE YE, SHALL HE BE THOUGHT WORTHY, WHO HATH TRODDEN UNDER FOOT THE SON OF GOD, AND HATH COUNTED THE BLOOD OF THE COVENANT, WHEREWITH HE WAS SANCTIFIED, AN UNHOLY THING, AND HATH DONE DESPITE UNTO THE SPIRIT OF GRACE?-Heb 10:26-29. HOW MUCH MORE SEVERELY DO YOU THINK A MAN DESERVES TO BE PUNISHED WHO HAS TRAMPLED THE SON OF GOD UNDER FOOT, WHO HAS TREATED AS AN UNHOLY THING THE BLOOD OF THE COVENANT THAT SANCTIFIED HIM, AND WHO HAS INSULTED THE SPIRIT OF GRACE?-Heb 10:29 NIV.
  
When you make that decision for Jesus, it is a very serious thing. You have made an agreement with God to follow, serve, and obey Jesus. This is why the Scriptures tell us, FOR IT HAD BEEN BETTER FOR THEM NOT TO HAVE KNOWN THE WAY OF RIGHTEOUSNESS, THAN, AFTER THEY HAD KNOWN IT, TO TURN FROM THE HOLY COMMANDMENT DELIVERED UNTO THEM-2 Pe 2:21. CAST NOT AWAY THEREFORE YOUR CONFIDENCE, WHICH HATH GREAT RECOMPENSE OF REWARD-Heb 10:35. Do not cast away your faith, and fall back into sin, and lose the Holy Spirit. Hold steadfast till the end. NOW THE JUST SHALL LIVE BY FAITH: BUT IF ANY MAN DRAW BACK (Draw back from what? Draw back from faith), MY SOUL SHALL HAVE NO PLEASURE IN HIM-Heb 10:38. In other words, if he draws back, he draws back to his old nature; he is drawing back to Satan. BUT WE ARE NOT OF THEM WHO DRAW BACK UNTO PERDITION (unto destruction)-Heb 10:39. Both Judas and the beast are referred to as sons of perdition-ref Jn 17:12; 2 Thes 2:3. THEREFORE BROTHERS (these are saved people), WE HAVE AN OBLIGATION-BUT IT IS NOT TO THE SINFUL NATURE, TO LIVE ACCORDING TO IT. FOR IF YOU LIVE ACCORDING TO THE SINFUL NATURE, YOU WILL DIE-Ro 8:12,13 NIV.

    It is written, WHEREFORE TAKE UNTO YOU THE WHOLE ARMOUR OF GOD, THAT YE MAY BE ABLE TO WITHSTAND IN THE EVIL DAY, AND HAVING DONE ALL TO STAND-Eph 6:13. The Gospel of peace is our armour. Without the Word "in us," we cannot stand against Satan. Without the Word in a new born-again Christian, he should quickly fall back into sin, and into the world and worldly things as temptations come against him. Faith comes from the Word. This is why it is so important for a new born-again Christian to study Godís Word. Jesus stood against the schemes of Satan with the Word. The disciples stood against Satan with the Word, which was in their minds and in their hearts. We are KEPT BY THE POWER OF GOD THROUGH FAITH UNTO SALVATION READY TO BE REVEALED IN THE LAST TIME-1 Pe 1:5. We are kept by Godís power, THROUGH FAITH. Faith comes from the Word. No Word, no faith, and you should fall away. Not obeying the Word, no evidence of faith, and you should fall away. Not doing the Word, no evidence of faith, and you should fall away. This is why Godís Word says, BUT BE YE DOERS OF THE WORD, AND NOT HEARERS ONLY, DECEIVING YOUR OWN SELVES-Ja 1:22. You cannot stand against Satan without the Word. You cannot stand against temptations, when they come, without the Word.
  
And you, HATH HE RECONCILED (you are saved) IF YE CONTINUE IN THE FAITH GROUNDED AND SETTLED, AND BE NOT MOVED AWAY FROM THE HOPE OF THE GOSPEL-Col 1:21,23. God is warning us to continue in the faith. BEWARE LEST ANY MAN SPOIL YOU THROUGH PHILOSOPHY AND VAIN DECEIT, AFTER THE TRADITION OF MEN, AFTER THE RUDIMENTS OF THE WORLD, AND NOT AFTER CHRIST-Col 2:8. SANCTIFY THEM THROUGH THY TRUTH: THY WORD IS TRUTH-Jn 17:17. Again, we see the need for the Word. Sanctify them through the Word. Paul said, I FEAR, LEST BY ANY MEANS, AS THE SERPENT BEGUILED EVE THROUGH HIS SUBTILTY, SO YOUR MINDS SHOULD BE CORRUPTED FROM THE SIMPLICITY THAT IS IN CHRIST-2 Cor 11:3. He appears worried about them falling back to a corrupted mind.

31-THE UNFORGIVABLE SIN

    The Bible gives us warnings about the sin which cannot be forgiven. The Holy Scriptures say, THERE IS A SIN UNTO DEATH: I DO NOT SAY THAT HE SHALL PRAY FOR IT-1 Jn 5:16. WHEREFORE I SAY UNTO YOU, ALL MANNER OF SIN AND BLASPHEMY SHALL BE FORGIVEN UNTO MEN: BUT THE BLASPHEMY AGAINST THE HOLY GHOST SHALL NOT BE FORGIVEN UNTO MEN. AND WHOSOEVER SPEAKETH A WORD AGAINST THE SON OF MAN, IT SHALL BE FORGIVEN HIM: BUT WHOSOEVER SPEAKETH AGAINST THE HOLY GHOST, IT SHALL NOT BE FORGIVEN HIM, NEITHER IN THIS WORLD, NEITHER IN THE WORLD TO COME-Mt 12:31,32. Some possible examples of this are in Mk 3:28-30; Lk 12:10; Gal 1:6-9; Eph 4:19; Heb 10:29; Rev 22:18,19. Some ways indicated by Scripture that we could commit the unforgivable sin are changing Godís Word (adding or taking away from the prophecy of this book); insulting the Spirit of grace (with sin); trampling the blood of Jesus by which you are sanctified; blasphemy against the Holy Spirit; and saying that Jesus is possessed by an evil spirit and casts out devils by Beelzebub-ref Mt 12:24,31 and Mk 3:22,28. We must always be very careful, to guard our words. When we speak against someone who Jesus sends, we are speaking against Jesus Himself-ref Ro 15:3; Mt 25:40. When a person in a church says a word against any child of God, these words fall on Jesus. They will have to give account of every idle word in the day of judgment.

32-HOW LONG BEFORE THE SPIRIT WILL DEPART?

    It is written, BUT THE SPIRIT OF THE LORD DEPARTED FROM SAUL, AND AN EVIL SPIRIT FROM THE LORD TROUBLED HIM-1 Sam 16:14. AND SAUL WAS AFRAID OF DAVID, BECAUSE THE LORD WAS WITH HIM, AND WAS DEPARTED FROM SAUL-1 Sam 18:12. CAST ME NOT AWAY FROM THY PRESENCE; AND TAKE NOT THY HOLY SPIRIT FROM ME. RESTORE UNTO ME THE JOY OF THY SALVATION; AND UPHOLD ME WITH THY FREE SPIRIT-Ps 51:11,12. We see that the Spirit of the Lord was with Saul, but the Lord later departed from him. David was afraid that the Spirit would also depart from him; however, he repented in time. The Lord did not depart. If we turn away, how long does the Lord give before the Spirit will leave us? We have examples in the Scriptures that just one sin was enough for the Lord to turn away. We have other examples in the Scriptures where the Lord waited. The only answer that can really be given is, Rev 2:5-I WILL COME UNTO THEE QUICKLY, AND WILL REMOVE THY CANDLESTICK OUT OF HIS PLACE, EXCEPT THOU REPENT. We note that, indeed, David did repent.
  
If we have never come to Jesus, how long does God give us to repent, and make that decision? The Bible says AND I GAVE HER SPACE TO REPENT OF HER FORNICATION; AND SHE REPENTED NOT-Rev 2:21. We have an allotted time; only God knows how long it is, before He will turn His back. What a tragedy when that happens! Then there is no hope, for God may give us over to a reprobate mind. We can only come to Jesus as God calls us. The time may come, when He calls you no longer. Time after time, God has given people a chance to repent; but time after time, people have turned away. Have your sins hardened you toward God?

    Paul tells us, BUT NOW, AFTER THAT YE HAVE KNOWN GOD, OR RATHER ARE KNOWN OF GOD (we see these people are saved, as they are known of God), HOW TURN YE AGAIN TO THE WEAK AND BEGGARLY ELEMENTS, WHEREUNTO YE DESIRE AGAIN TO BE IN BONDAGE? These are saved, born-again brothers, being warned that they can fall back into the bondage of the Law and fall from the grace that they are now under. Now we brethren, AS ISAAC WAS, ARE THE CHILDREN OF THE PROMISE. BUT AS THEN HE THAT WAS BORN AFTER THE FLESH PERSECUTED HIM THAT WAS BORN AFTER THE SPIRIT, EVEN SO IT IS NOW. I AM AFRAID OF YOU (for you), LEST I HAVE BESTOWED UPON YOU LABOUR IN VAIN-Gal 4:9,28,29,11. Paul is trying to warn them not to fall back into the bondage of the Law, by turning away from the freedom they have through grace. Paul is afraid they will fall away and lose their salvation. That all his work in preaching to them and getting them to commit their lives to Jesus will have been in vain.
  
When they had prayed, THE PLACE WAS SHAKEN WHERE THEY WERE ASSEMBLED TOGETHER; AND THEY WERE ALL FILLED WITH THE HOLY GHOSTÖAND GREAT GRACE WAS UPON THEM ALL. BUT A CERTAIN MAN NAMED ANANIAS, SOLD A POSSESSION, AND KEPT BACK PART OF THE PRICEÖBUT PETER SAID, ANANIAS, WHY HATH SATAN FILLED THINE HEART TO LIE TO THE HOLY GHOST, AND TO KEEP BACK PART OF THE PRICE OF THE LAND? AND ANANIAS HEARING THESE WORDS FELL DOWN, AND GAVE UP THE GHOST; AND GREAT FEAR CAME ON ALL THEM THAT HEARD THESE THINGS-Acts 4:31,33; 5:1,3,5. We note that Ananias was saved as they all were filled with the Holy Ghost and great grace was upon them all. Yet, he fell away and lied to the Holy Ghost.
  
Heb 6:4-6 covers the Millennium, when Jesus Christ shall reign in Jerusalem. Certain words may be noted, such as, THE POWERS OF THE WORLD TO COME and RENEW THEM AGAIN UNTO REPENTANCE.
  
The Bible tells us, FOR IT IS IMPOSSIBLE
  
FOR THOSE WHO WERE ONCE ENLIGHTENED,
  
AND HAVE TASTED OF THE HEAVENLY GIFT,
  
AND WERE MADE PARTAKERS OF THE HOLY GHOST,
  
AND HAVE TASTED THE GOOD WORD OF GOD,
  
AND THE POWERS OF THE WORLD TO COME,
  
IF THEY SHALL FALL AWAY, TO RENEW THEM AGAIN UNTO REPENTANCE; SEEING THEY CRUCIFY TO THEMSELVES THE SON OF GOD AFRESH, AND PUT HIM TO AN OPEN SHAME-Heb 6:4-6. It is impossible for a born-again person during the Millenniumówho has tasted of the heavenly gift (the Holy Spirit), and has been a partaker of the Holy Ghost (as we have seen the Holy Spirit is given as a deposit), and has tasted the good Word of God, and the powers of the world to comeóif they fall away or fall from grace, to renew them again unto repentance (they cannot renew and come back to Jesus and be saved again); seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh (the second time, again), and put Him to an open shame (as Jesus is present on earth reigning and ruling for 1000 years). This verse is covering people who are saved and fall away during the Millennium. They will be eternally lost. During the Millennium, people can also fall away.

33-LAST COMMENTS REGARDING THIS MESSAGE

    Praise Jesus! Through the wisdom He has given, Godís everlasting truth has been revealed in abundance.

    Last comments regarding this message are found in Jn 5:37; Mt 7:22,23-I NEVER KNEW YOU. For a further explanation of these words refer to Ezek 3:20 and 33:13,18.
  
Regarding 1 Jn 2:19, you may find the answer in point numbers 2 and 3 of the parable of the sower and in Ezek 3:20; 33:13,18.

    We trust that Heb 13:5 has already been answered as has Jn 6:27. As for Eph 5:30, we have covered in several versesóIF we hold steadfast to the end, the confidence that we had in the beginning.

    We hope that any questions regarding Ro 8:38,39; Jn 10:27-29; Isa 43:1,2; Ro 8:35; Jn 6:39,40 have been answered for you. It is by faith that you stand firm. Also note Gal 4:9,28,29,11.

    Finally, the Scripture tells us, AGAIN, WHEN A RIGHTEOUS MAN DOTH TURN FROM HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS, AND COMMIT INIQUITY, AND I LAY A STUMBLINGBLOCK BEFORE HIM, HE SHALL DIE...AND HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS WHICH HE HATH DONE SHALL NOT BE REMEMBERED-Ezek 3:20. ALL HIS RIGHTEOUSNESSES (which is Jesus) SHALL NOT BE REMEMBERED; BUT FOR HIS INIQUITY THAT HE HATH COMMITTED, HE SHALL DIE FOR IT-Ezek 33:13. IF HE TURN FROM HIS SIN, AND DO THAT WHICH IS LAWFUL AND RIGHT; NONE OF HIS SINS THAT HE HATH COMMITTED SHALL BE MENTIONED UNTO HIM: WHEN THE RIGHTEOUS TURNETH FROM HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS, AND COMMITTETH INIQUITY, HE SHALL EVEN DIE THEREBY-Ezek 33:14,16,18.
  
(Note: Some Scriptures are not complete, but are listed in part.)

CLICK HERE FORóSALVATION-CAN IT BE LOST? Pt 2
CLICK HERE FORóCOPYRIGHT INFORMATION