I came across the blog of a young man, Austin Coons, who is really impressive. At 16 years old, he is intently studying and sharing Christ. I’m blessed to have come across his blog here. He has given me permission to share this with you…a blog he wrote about the issue of apostasy, which is turning away from and rejecting Christ once you have received salvation. Before reading any further in my thoughts, I ask that you please read his thoughts, with Scriptural references here.
For further reference on the topic of apostasy, here is another link I’ve found that goes somewhat in depth on the topic.
Once you’ve reviewed those, then here’s my further commentary. I have pretty much always, over the last 30 years since accepting Christ, been taught the ‘once saved, always saved’ message. This is primarily based on John 6:32-59 . That’s where Jesus is teaching that nobody can come to him except the Father draws them, and that Jesus will in no way cast anyone out who the Father draws to him. They will receive eternal life. Please read the passage, to get the full benefit of Jesus’ message there.
I have to confess, that while I have always believed that, I’ve struggled with it some. I know of the other verses mentioned in Austin’s blog…of course. I’m not a novice to the Bible. And it is troubling to me, the idea that a person who accepts Christ and then completely rejects Christ and turns away and back into a sinful life, could still be saved. We all like to think of God as merciful and loving and kind…and He is those things. But He is also just. Now I’m not talking about just sinning, because as Christians we will still sin. We still have the war going on between the flesh and the Spirit that’s spoken of in Romans 8. And I myself can attest to my own struggles between the flesh and the Spirit. But I know that I can’t comfortably sin…the Spirit is convicting me and I’m miserable about it when I do. And I will also say that I have fallen into some pretty serious sin since accepting Christ. And throughout it…I know without a doubt that God was still with me. I had not turned away from Him. I had not rejected Him. I was just trying to convince myself that He knew my heart and was making an exception to the rule for me. But I was still serving Him. And eventually I had to admit that I was wrong, and deal with that between God and myself. I have no doubt that He loves me, and loved me throughout all that.
I even had a time once, when I was 30 years old, when I was going through just a horrible time of my life. I thought God had abandoned me, and I was angry with Him. I tried to not believe…but I couldn’t. I just couldn’t. So I instead just told Him basically, “Ok God…I know you’re real and you’re there…but I’m really mad at you!” I sort of imagine He was laughing at me for that. I have no problem with being honest with God…even about anger toward Him. He understands, and there’s no point in trying to hide it from Him. He’s gonna know! So anyway…I never really rejected Him. I never really turned away. I was just mad for a time, and then I got over it, and I saw what He had done a little later on…how He had never abandoned me, but had been with me through that whole time and had a purpose in allowing it all. I’m not saying He caused it…just that He allowed it, and I learned a lot during the process.
This topic of apostasy vs. once saved, always saved isn’t important if the latter is true. But if the former is true, it’s vitally important. It could mean that a person would think that even though they turn away and reject Christ, it won’t matter and they’ll still have a place saved for them in heaven…and they will be very disappointed to say the least.
I want to know what you think about this, and why? What is your opinion…and what is the basis of your opinion? Thank you, and thank you to Austin, who is a very thoughtful young man who I imagine will be a great servant of the Lord…and already is. Of course as I pointed out to him…he’ll still be learning even when he’s old like me. Ha ha! And I will still be learning until the day I meet Jesus.
And as for me…I just can’t imagine truly turning away! I have said before, once you accept Christ there’s just no turning back. There may be sort of ‘sliding back’ in ways…but never turning back. But that’s based on myself and the fact that I can’t do it. I will never give up my faith…and believe me, it’s been tested very harshly.
Thank you in advance for your thoughts…and any Biblical backup you have, as well as personal sharing you’d like to do.
Love and blessings,