Thursday, April 05, 2012

Preservation of the Saints

Preservation of the Saints - The blood of Christ is sufficient both to procure and secure salvation of all for whom it was shed. Therefore, all of the elect will finally be saved.

The truth of preservation is implied when the scriptures describe the saved as being children of God. Hence, they are in vital relationship with God in the same sense in which a son has vital relationships with his natural father. This relationship can never be destroyed. That is, a man can never cease to be his father's son. However, the fellowship between a father and son can be greatly diminished through the son's disobedience. This is also the case between God and His children.

The scriptures directly assert that all saved persons are the current possessors of eternal life (Jn 3:36, Jn 5:24, Jn 6:47, Jn 6:54, 1Jn 5:11) and that this life can never be lost (Jn 6:37-39, Jn 10:28, Rom 8:35-39, 1Pet 1:3-5). Indeed, life which can be lost cannot properly be called eternal.

The Lord's people are said to be predestined to glorification (Rom 8:28-30, Eph 1:3-6), and a predestined event is irreversible by definition. Romans 8:29 asserts that all who are called and justified are also predestined to glorification. It follows then that any who fall short of glorification must never have been truly called and justified.

Man can be condemned to hell only after a valid charge has been made against him. This cannot be the case for God's children (Rom 8:33) since they are sanctified once for all (Heb 10:10) and are forever perfected (Heb 10:14).

Were eternal life secured by man's power, it would doubtlessly be lost. However, the scriptures teach eternal life is secured by the infinite power of God (Jn 10:27-29, 1Cor 1:8, Philip 1:6, 1Thes 5:23, 1Pet 1:5).

The doctrine of preservation is not intended to teach that saved persons can sin with impunity. The scriptures teach God will bring corrective chastisement against all of His disobedient children (Ps 93:12-13, 1Cor 11:32, Heb 12:6-8, Rev 3:19). Accordingly, scriptures teach the power of God's Spirit is ever at work within His children bringing forth the fruits of righteousness (Philip 2:13, 1Thes 4:9, 2Thes 3:3).

Though the Spirit of God moves His people both to will and to do His good pleasure (Philip 2:13), both scriptures and experience teach this Divine influence is not of such degree to bring forth complete sinlessness. Therefore, the good works performed by saved persons cannot account for the preservation of their eternal salvation. Salvation is both obtained and maintained by the grace of God. The scriptures often associate good works with eternal salvation, but salvation is not the result of works; rather, works are the result of salvation (Mt 12:33-35, Jn 8:43-47, Jn 10:25-29, Jn 15:16-19, Acts 11:18, Acts 13:48, Acts 16:14, 1Cor 1:22-24, 1Cor 1:30-31, Gal 5:22-24, Eph 1:4-5, Eph 2:10, 1Thes 1:4-5, 2Thes 2:13-14, 1Pet 2:9).

Tuesday, April 03, 2012

The Ant and The Grasshopper

A little political Humor...

The ant works hard in the withering heat all summer long, building his house and laying up supplies for the winter. The grasshopper thinks the ant is a fool and laughs and dances and plays the summer away. Come winter, the ant is warm and well fed. The grasshopper has no food or shelter, so he dies out in the cold.

Be responsible for yourself!

The ant works hard in the withering heat all summer long, building his house and laying up supplies for the winter. The grasshopper thinks the ant is a fool and laughs and dances and plays the summer away. Come winter, the shivering grasshopper calls a press conference and demands to know why the ant should be warm and well fed while others are cold and starving.

CBS, NBC, ABC and CNN show up to provide pictures of the shivering grasshopper next to a video of the ant in his comfortable home with a table filled with food. America is stunned by the sharp contrast. How can this be, that in a country of such wealth, this poor grasshopper is allowed to suffer so? Kermit the Frog appears on MSNBC with the grasshopper, and everybody cries when they sing, "It's Not Easy Being Green." Jesse Jackson stages a demonstration in front of the ant's house where the news stations film the group singing, "We shall overcome." Jesse then has the group kneel down to pray to God for the grasshopper's sake.

Democrat leaders, in every media outlet they can find, exclaim that the ant has gotten rich off the back of the grasshopper and call for an immediate tax hike on the ant to make him pay his fair share.

Finally, the EEOC drafts the Economic Equity and Anti-Grasshopper Act retroactive to the beginning of the summer! The ant is fined for failing to hire a proportionate number of green bugs and, having nothing left to pay his retroactive taxes, his home is confiscated by the government.

Hillary Clinton gets her old law firm to represent the grasshopper in a defamation suit against the ant, and the case is tried before a panel of federal judges that Barack Obama appointed from a list of single-parent welfare recipients. The ant loses the case.

The story ends as we see the grasshopper finishing up the last bits of the ant's food while the government house he is in, which just happens to be the ant's old house, crumbles around him because he doesn't maintain it.

The ant has disappeared in the snow. The grasshopper is found dead in a drug related incident and the house, now abandoned, is taken over by a gang of spiders who terrorize the once peaceful neighborhood.

Be careful how you vote in 2012.