Chapter 15: How to stay saved?

Let’s assume that you are an adult of sound mind. Now picture this scenario. You work in a tall building. It is 5:00 p.m., and you are just getting off work. As you are about to step into the elevator to get to the first floor I jump in front of you and cry, "Don’t take the elevator! At the bottom is a huge, hungry, purple, green-eyed monster waiting to devour you." Would you believe me?

If you are an adult of sound mind you wouldn’t. You would probably think I am a nut. Why? Because you know that there is nothing such as a huge, hungry, purple, green-eyed monster that eats people. Since there is no such danger I must be a nut to warn you that there is such a danger.

Some people think that the Holy Spirit warns them about dangers that really don’t exist. Specifically, He writes statements like this one:

Heb 3:12-14 Take care, brethren, that there not be in any one of you an evil, unbelieving heart that falls away from the living God. But encourage one another day after day, as long as it is {still} called "Today," so that none of you will be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. For we have become partakers of Christ, if we hold fast the beginning of our assurance firm until the end,

And this one:

Rom 8:12-14 So then, brethren, we are under obligation, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh - for if you are living according to the flesh, you must die; but if by the Spirit you are putting to death the deeds of the body, you will live. For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.

And this one:

2 Cor 13:5 Test yourselves {to see} if you are in the faith; examine yourselves! Or do you not recognize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you - unless indeed you fail the test?

And this one:

Rom 11:22 Behold then the kindness and severity of God; to those who fell, severity, but to you, God's kindness, if you continue in His kindness; otherwise you also will be cut off.

And many more.

The above statements, inspired by the Holy Spirit, indicate that the Holy Spirit is telling people who are saved that if they do or don’t do certain things they are no longer saved. People who believe that a person who is saved cannot lose his salvation cannot explain why the Holy Spirit warns saved people of a danger that doesn’t exist.

Now we know for sure that the Holy Spirit does not say things that He doesn’t mean. Nor does He deceive, lie or exaggerate. The Holy Spirit is not the type of person to scare people with warnings that are untrue. If He warns us about a danger, it must necessarily exist. Therefore, it must be possible for a person to fall away from the living God (Heb 3:12-14), to die spiritually (Rom 8:12-14), to fail the test of being in the faith (2 Cor 13:5) and to be cut off (Rom 11:22) – all this, even after one is saved.

Now if there is such a danger then there is also a need to ensure that we stay saved. Therefore, this chapter describes what is needed to stay saved.

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