How To Receive The Baptism Of The Holy Spirit

(All Bible quotations, except otherwise stated, are from the New King James Version).

The Acts 2:37 Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Men and brethren, what shall we do?”

The Acts 2:38 Then Peter said to them, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.

The Acts 2:39 For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, as many as the Lord our God will call.”

The promise of the Holy Spirit is made to all believers in Christ. Every Christian is entitled to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit and the subsequent refillings of the Spirit as needed. It is the gift and promise of God to every believer in Christ. The Holy Spirit is the Comforter, Helper, Guide, Leader, Teacher and Counselor promised by Christ to all his disciples. After believing and receiving Christ Jesus as one’s personal Lord and Saviour, the next thing for a believer is to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit.

In the concluding part of Peter’s sermon on the day of Pentecost cited above, we see the formula for receiving the Holy Spirit laid out clearly by Peter. When the people asked what they needed to do in order to be saved and escape the wrath of God, Peter advised them to repent and be baptised in the name of Jesus Christ, for the remission of sins, and then they would receive the gift of the baptism of the Holy Spirit. He told them the gift of the Holy Spirit was for them, their children and for as many as the Lord God would call to salvation. So, every saved person is entitled to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit! When you repent and get baptised in water as a public show of your repentance and faith in Christ Jesus as your Lord and Saviour, you are set to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit. At the start of the Church, the baptism of the Holy Spirit was received by the laying on of hands of the Apostles on believers who had received Christ as Lord and Saviour and had been baptised by immersion in water in his name. The Apostles would pray and lay hands on the water-baptised believers and the Holy Spirit would come upon them.

The Acts 8:5 Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria and preached Christ to them.

The Acts 8:6 And the multitudes with one accord heeded the things spoken by Philip, hearing and seeing the miracles which he did.

The Acts 8:7 For unclean spirits, crying with a loud voice, came out of many who were possessed; and many who were paralyzed and lame were healed.

The Acts 8:8 And there was great joy in that city.

The Acts 8:9 But there was a certain man called Simon, who previously practiced sorcery in the city and astonished the people of Samaria, claiming that he was someone great,

The Acts 8:10 to whom they all gave heed, from the least to the greatest, saying, “This man is the great power of God.”

The Acts 8:11 And they heeded him because he had astonished them with his sorceries for a long time.

The Acts 8:12 But when they believed Philip as he preached the things concerning the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, both men and women were baptized.

The Acts 8:13 Then Simon himself also believed; and when he was baptized he continued with Philip, and was amazed, seeing the miracles and signs which were done.

The Acts 8:14 Now when the apostles who were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent Peter and John to them,

The Acts 8:15 who, when they had come down, prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit.

The Acts 8:16 For as yet He had fallen upon none of them. They had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.

The Acts 8:17 Then they laid hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit.

The Acts 19:1 And it happened, while Apollos was at Corinth, that Paul, having passed through the upper regions, came to Ephesus. And finding some disciples

The Acts 19:2 he said to them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?”
So they said to him, “We have not so much as heard whether there is a Holy Spirit.”

The Acts 19:3 And he said to them, “Into what then were you baptized?”
So they said, “Into John’s baptism.”

The Acts 19:4 Then Paul said, “John indeed baptized with a baptism of repentance, saying to the people that they should believe on Him who would come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus.”

The Acts 19:5 When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.

The Acts 19:6 And when Paul had laid hands on them, the Holy Spirit came upon them, and they spoke with tongues and prophesied.

The Acts 19:7 Now the men were about twelve in all.

Beside Apostles, any other preacher of the gospel can minister the Holy Spirit to others who are yet to be baptised in the Holy Spirit. Anyone who ministers Christ and the gifts of the Spirit to a group can also be the channel through which others can receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit by faith!

Galatians 3:1 O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you that you should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed among you as crucified?

Galatians 3:2 This only I want to learn from you: Did you receive the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?

Galatians 3:3 Are you so foolish? Having begun in the Spirit, are you now being made perfect by the flesh?

Galatians 3:4 Have you suffered so many things in vain—if indeed it was in vain?

Galatians 3:5 Therefore He who supplies the Spirit to you and works miracles among you, does He do it by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?—

Apart from the laying on of hands by the Apostles and other members of the five-fold ministry, some people have been known to receive the Holy Spirit by the laying on of hands of other Spirit-filled believers not known to be members of the five-fold ministry. We see that happening in the case of Saul (later called Paul). Ananias, the man who laid hands on Paul to receive his sight, and who water-baptised him and laid hands on him to receive the Holy Spirit, was not an Apostle. He was just an ordinary disciple of Christ. This shows that the Lord can use any Spirit-filled believer to minister the baptism of the Holy Spirit to another believer who is yet to be Spirit filled.

The Acts 9:10 Now there was a certain disciple at Damascus named Ananias; and to him the Lord said in a vision, “Ananias.”
And he said, “Here I am, Lord.”

The Acts 9:11 So the Lord said to him, “Arise and go to the street called Straight, and inquire at the house of Judas for one called Saul of Tarsus, for behold, he is praying.

The Acts 9:12 And in a vision he has seen a man named Ananias coming in and putting his hand on him, so that he might receive his sight.”

The Acts 9:13 Then Ananias answered, “Lord, I have heard from many about this man, how much harm he has done to Your saints in Jerusalem.

The Acts 9:14 And here he has authority from the chief priests to bind all who call on Your name.”

The Acts 9:15 But the Lord said to him, “Go, for he is a chosen vessel of Mine to bear My name before Gentiles, kings, and the children of Israel.

The Acts 9:16 For I will show him how many things he must suffer for My name’s sake.”

The Acts 9:17 And Ananias went his way and entered the house; and laying his hands on him he said, “Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus, who appeared to you on the road as you came, has sent me that you may receive your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit.”

The Acts 9:18 Immediately there fell from his eyes something like scales, and he received his sight at once; and he arose and was baptized.

There is also evidence in Scripture which shows that people can receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit without anyone laying hands on them! Cornelius and his household, the first Gentiles to receive Christ and the Holy Spirit, got filled with the Holy Spirit while Peter was still preaching his sermon to them! While Peter was still speaking, Jesus interrupted the sermon and baptised the listeners with the Holy Spirit, without even a prior water baptism! Just by believing Christ in their hearts, God bore witness of their faith by sending the Holy Spirit upon them as a seal of their faith in Christ! God can bypass even his own rules to show he’s sovereign! And when he does that, we don’t question him! We just go ahead and accept what he’s done! Hallelujah!

The Acts 10:24 And the following day they entered Caesarea. Now Cornelius was waiting for them, and had called together his relatives and close friends.

The Acts 10:25 As Peter was coming in, Cornelius met him and fell down at his feet and worshiped him.

The Acts 10:26 But Peter lifted him up, saying, “Stand up; I myself am also a man.”

The Acts 10:27 And as he talked with him, he went in and found many who had come together.

The Acts 10:28 Then he said to them, “You know how unlawful it is for a Jewish man to keep company with or go to one of another nation. But God has shown me that I should not call any man common or unclean.

The Acts 10:29 Therefore I came without objection as soon as I was sent for. I ask, then, for what reason have you sent for me?”

The Acts 10:30 So Cornelius said, “Four days ago I was fasting until this hour; and at the ninth hour I prayed in my house, and behold, a man stood before me in bright clothing,

The Acts 10:31 and said, ‘Cornelius, your prayer has been heard, and your alms are remembered in the sight of God.

The Acts 10:32 Send therefore to Joppa and call Simon here, whose surname is Peter. He is lodging in the house of Simon, a tanner, by the sea. When he comes, he will speak to you.’

The Acts 10:33 So I sent to you immediately, and you have done well to come. Now therefore, we are all present before God, to hear all the things commanded you by God.”

The Acts 10:34 Then Peter opened his mouth and said: “In truth I perceive that God shows no partiality.

The Acts 10:35 But in every nation whoever fears Him and works righteousness is accepted by Him.

The Acts 10:36 The word which God sent to the children of Israel, preaching peace through Jesus Christ—He is Lord of all—

The Acts 10:37 that word you know, which was proclaimed throughout all Judea, and began from Galilee after the baptism which John preached:

The Acts 10:38 how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him.

The Acts 10:39 And we are witnesses of all things which He did both in the land of the Jews and in Jerusalem, whom they killed by hanging on a tree.

The Acts 10:40 Him God raised up on the third day, and showed Him openly,

The Acts 10:41 not to all the people, but to witnesses chosen before by God, even to us who ate and drank with Him after He arose from the dead.

The Acts 10:42 And He commanded us to preach to the people, and to testify that it is He who was ordained by God to be Judge of the living and the dead.

The Acts 10:43 To Him all the prophets witness that, through His name, whoever believes in Him will receive remission of sins.”

The Acts 10:44 While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit fell upon all those who heard the word.

The Acts 10:45 And those of the circumcision who believed were astonished, as many as came with Peter, because the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out on the Gentiles also.

The Acts 10:46 For they heard them speak with tongues and magnify God.
Then Peter answered,

The Acts 10:47 “Can anyone forbid water, that these should not be baptized who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have?”

The Acts 10:48 And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of the Lord. Then they asked him to stay a few days.

The Acts 15:6 Now the apostles and elders came together to consider this matter.

The Acts 15:7 And when there had been much dispute, Peter rose up and said to them: “Men and brethren, you know that a good while ago God chose among us, that by my mouth the Gentiles should hear the word of the gospel and believe.

The Acts 15:8 So God, who knows the heart, acknowledged them by giving them the Holy Spirit, just as He did to us,

The Acts 15:9 and made no distinction between us and them, purifying their hearts by faith.

Finally, a believer in Christ can receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit directly from God by faith, without any intermediary! You can directly ask God to fill you with the Holy Spirit. When you ask in faith through the name of Jesus and do not doubt, you will receive the Holy Spirit! Whatever you ask the Father in the name of Jesus Christ, he’ll give to you, as long as you ask in faith and in accordance with God’s will. And, it’s the will of God that every child of God be filled with the Holy Spirit! Ask and believe that you have received and you will have exactly what you asked God for! God is more willing to give his children the Holy spirit than our earthly parents are in giving us good things!

Luke 11:9 “So I say to you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.

Luke 11:10 For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.

Luke 11:11 If a son asks for bread from any father among you, will he give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent instead of a fish?

Luke 11:12 Or if he asks for an egg, will he offer him a scorpion?

Luke 11:13 If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him!”

John 16:23 “And in that day you will ask Me nothing. Most assuredly, I say to you, whatever you ask the Father in My name He will give you.

John 16:24 Until now you have asked nothing in My name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full.

Mark 11:22 So Jesus answered and said to them, “Have faith in God.

Mark 11:23 For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says.

Mark 11:24 Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.

In conclusion, the baptism of the Holy Spirit is God’s promised gift to every believer in Christ. Every Christian is qualified to receive the gift of the Holy Spirit soon after salvation. The baptism of the Spirit can be received by laying on of hands of ministers of the gospel or any Spirit-filled believer. Also, the baptism of the Holy Spirit can be received directly by an individual who has repented and has been baptised in the name of Jesus Christ. Such a person can ask God directly for the baptism of the Holy Spirit. He or she will receive the Holy Spirit if he or she asks by faith in the name of Jesus Christ. Whatever we ask God by faith in the name of Christ, as long as it’s in accordance with his will he’ll hear and answer. And, it’s God’s will that we be filled with the Holy Spirit. May we all ask and receive the fullness of the Holy Spirit in the name of Jesus. We need the Holy Spirit to be all that God intends for us to be as Christians!

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Being Filled With The Holy Spirit Is Not A Once-And-For-All Experience: You Can Be Filled As Many Times As You Need!

(All Bible quotations, except otherwise stated, are from the New King James Version).

The baptism of the Holy Spirit fills the believer in Christ with the presence and power of the Holy Spirit, and releases upon him the gift(s) of the Spirit. The effects of the power and gifts of the Holy Spirit are to energise the believer and empower him/her for effective service and ministry. The initial infilling of the Holy Spirit after believing and obeying the gospel is called the baptism of the Holy Spirit. After the baptism of the Holy Spirit, the power of the Spirit experienced in the life and ministry of a believer wanes with service and use. Unless regularly refilled, a believer baptised in the Holy Spirit runs the risk of running out of gas. We shall examine Scripture to see how we ought to be regularly filled with the Spirit, despite the initial baptism, to keep the fire burning!

On the day of Pentecost, the Holy Spirit descended on the disciples of Christ and filled them for the first time. The promise Christ made to them concerning the Comforter was thus fulfilled. The baptism of the Holy Spirit they experienced on the first occasion was manifested by the gift of speaking in foreign languages they did not learn, leading to wonder and amazement among their foreign audience who could hear them speak their foreign languages clearly. This was one of the gifts of the Holy Spirit on display. It led to Peter’s inspired sermon and the conversion of about three thousand people. This was preaching of the gospel with power and demonstration of the Holy Spirit! The result was amazing: one sermon produced three thousand converts! No wonder Christ asked them to wait until they were endued with the power of the Holy Spirit before launching out to fulfil the great commision he had given them. The great commision can only be successfully fulfilled with the anointing and power of the Holy Spirit!

The Acts 2:1 When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.

The Acts 2:2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting.

The Acts 2:3 Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them.

The Acts 2:4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.

The Acts 2:5 And there were dwelling in Jerusalem Jews, devout men, from every nation under heaven.

The Acts 2:6 And when this sound occurred, the multitude came together, and were confused, because everyone heard them speak in his own language.

The Acts 2:7 Then they were all amazed and marveled, saying to one another, “Look, are not all these who speak Galileans?

The Acts 2:8 And how is it that we hear, each in our own language in which we were born?

The Acts 2:9 Parthians and Medes and Elamites, those dwelling in Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia,

The Acts 2:10 Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya adjoining Cyrene, visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes,

The Acts 2:11 Cretans and Arabs—we hear them speaking in our own tongues the wonderful works of God.”

The Acts 2:12 So they were all amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, “Whatever could this mean?”

The Acts 2:13 Others mocking said, “They are full of new wine.”

The Acts 2:14 But Peter, standing up with the eleven, raised his voice and said to them, “Men of Judea and all who dwell in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and heed my words.

The Acts 2:15 For these are not drunk, as you suppose, since it is only the third hour of the day.

The Acts 2:16 But this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel:

The Acts 2:17 ‘And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God,
That I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh;
Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,
Your young men shall see visions,
Your old men shall dream dreams.

The Acts 2:18 And on My menservants and on My maidservants
I will pour out My Spirit in those days;
And they shall prophesy.

The Acts 2:19 I will show wonders in heaven above
And signs in the earth beneath:
Blood and fire and vapor of smoke.

The Acts 2:20 The sun shall be turned into darkness,
And the moon into blood,
Before the coming of the great and awesome day of the Lord.

The Acts 2:21 And it shall come to pass
That whoever calls on the name of the Lord
Shall be saved.’

The Acts 2:37 Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Men and brethren, what shall we do?”

The Acts 2:38 Then Peter said to them, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.

The Acts 2:39 For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, as many as the Lord our God will call.”

The Acts 2:40 And with many other words he testified and exhorted them, saying, “Be saved from this perverse generation.”

The Acts 2:41 Then those who gladly received his word were baptized; and that day about three thousand souls were added to them.

The first baptism of the Holy Spirit endued the disciples with power from on high, and enabled them witness for Christ in a powerful way, with tremendous success. We see many signs and wonders done by the disciples by virtue of the anointing of the Holy Spirit upon them. As they continued to minister to people in the power of the Holy Spirit after Pentecost, they got regularly refilled by the Holy Spirit. The initial baptism of the Holy Spirit wasn’t sufficient to carry them throughout the Christian journey. They needed regular refillings to replenish lost virtues and keep the fire burning. As Jesus demonstrated to us in his encounter with the woman who had the issue of blood, virtue or power leaves a minister whenever the Holy Spirit works through the person to effect healing or deliverance, or to bless people in other ways. If virtue could leave Jesus to effect healing in people, then every minister needs to replenish lost virtue after each ministration. The more we minister in the power of the Holy Spirit to people, the more we need to go back to be filled with the Holy Spirit! Each time we meet resistance or opposition, we need to pray for more power to face and overcome them. We need more of God as we serve! We need to replenish power everyday!

Luke 8:43 Now a woman, having a flow of blood for twelve years, who had spent all her livelihood on physicians and could not be healed by any,

Luke 8:44 came from behind and touched the border of His garment. And immediately her flow of blood stopped.

Luke 8:45 And Jesus said, “Who touched Me?”
When all denied it, Peter and those with him said, “Master, the multitudes throng and press You, and You say, ‘Who touched Me?’”

Luke 8:46 But Jesus said, “Somebody touched Me, for I perceived power going out from Me.”

Luke 8:47 Now when the woman saw that she was not hidden, she came trembling; and falling down before Him, she declared to Him in the presence of all the people the reason she had touched Him and how she was healed immediately.

Luke 8:48 And He said to her, “Daughter, be of good cheer; your faith has made you well. Go in peace.”

The Acts 4:1 Now as they spoke to the people, the priests, the captain of the temple, and the Sadducees came upon them,

The Acts 4:2 being greatly disturbed that they taught the people and preached in Jesus the resurrection from the dead.

The Acts 4:3 And they laid hands on them, and put them in custody until the next day, for it was already evening.

The Acts 4:4 However, many of those who heard the word believed; and the number of the men came to be about five thousand.

The Acts 4:5 And it came to pass, on the next day, that their rulers, elders, and scribes,

The Acts 4:6 as well as Annas the high priest, Caiaphas, John, and Alexander, and as many as were of the family of the high priest, were gathered together at Jerusalem.

The Acts 4:7 And when they had set them in the midst, they asked, “By what power or by what name have you done this?”

The Acts 4:8 Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them, “Rulers of the people and elders of Israel:

The Acts 4:9 If we this day are judged for a good deed done to a helpless man, by what means he has been made well,

The Acts 4:10 let it be known to you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead, by Him this man stands here before you whole.

The Acts 4:11 This is the ‘stone which was rejected by you builders, which has become the chief cornerstone.’

The Acts 4:12 Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”

The Acts 4:13 Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated and untrained men, they marveled. And they realized that they had been with Jesus.

The Acts 4:14 And seeing the man who had been healed standing with them, they could say nothing against it.

The Acts 4:15 But when they had commanded them to go aside out of the council, they conferred among themselves,

The Acts 4:16 saying, “What shall we do to these men? For, indeed, that a notable miracle has been done through them is evident to all who dwell in Jerusalem, and we cannot deny it.

The Acts 4:17 But so that it spreads no further among the people, let us severely threaten them, that from now on they speak to no man in this name.”

The Acts 4:18 So they called them and commanded them not to speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus.

The Acts 4:19 But Peter and John answered and said to them, “Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you more than to God, you judge.

The Acts 4:20 For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard.”

The Acts 4:21 So when they had further threatened them, they let them go, finding no way of punishing them, because of the people, since they all glorified God for what had been done.

The Acts 4:22 For the man was over forty years old on whom this miracle of healing had been performed.

The Acts 4:23 And being let go, they went to their own companions and reported all that the chief priests and elders had said to them.

The Acts 4:24 So when they heard that, they raised their voice to God with one accord and said: “Lord, You are God, who made heaven and earth and the sea, and all that is in them,

The Acts 4:25 who by the mouth of Your servant David have said:
‘Why did the nations rage,
And the people plot vain things?

The Acts 4:26 The kings of the earth took their stand,
And the rulers were gathered together
Against the Lord and against His Christ.’

The Acts 4:27 “For truly against Your holy Servant Jesus, whom You anointed, both Herod and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles and the people of Israel, were gathered together

The Acts 4:28 to do whatever Your hand and Your purpose determined before to be done.

The Acts 4:29 Now, Lord, look on their threats, and grant to Your servants that with all boldness they may speak Your word,

The Acts 4:30 by stretching out Your hand to heal, and that signs and wonders may be done through the name of Your holy Servant Jesus.”

The Acts 4:31 And when they had prayed, the place where they were assembled together was shaken; and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and they spoke the word of God with boldness.

The Apostle Paul, in his admonition to the Ephesians, enjoined them to be filled with the Spirit, rather than being filled with wine which leads to drunkenness. The Apostle encouraged believers to be filled to the brim with the Spirit, to the same extent drunkards get filled with wine to experience inebriation. Believers are thus exhorted to be constantly filled with the Spirit, rather than indulging in works of the flesh. It is only as we get filled with the Spirit that we put to death the flesh and its works. Paul equally prayed for the Christians in Colosse to be filled with knowledge and wisdom, all gifts of the Holy Spirit. The more we’re filled with the Spirit, the more we grow in knowledge and wisdom and spiritual maturity. To be filled with the Spirit means to regularly receive full and fresh anointings of the Spirit. It means not to rely on the initial baptism of the Holy Spirit as a once-and-for-all phenomenon! We need to be overwhelmed or subsumed in the Spirit always. Once we run low on the anointing because of constant usage, we need new topping up, new refillings, to keep us always ready for service!

Ephesians 5:18 And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit,

Colossians 1:9 For this reason we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding;

Colossians 1:10 that you may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God;

In conclusion, the filling of the Holy Spirit is not a once-and-for-all phenomenon. After the initial baptism that endues one with power from one high, one needs to be regularly refilled with the Spirit. This is because, as one ministers in the power of the Spirit, virtue leaves the minister, as he uses the anointing to minister to people. The more we minister, the more we need to be refilled. It is as we get regularly filled with the Spirit that we serve God more effectively and put to death the works of the flesh. May we go to God daily for fillings of the Holy Spirit, after the initial baptism, so that we will always walk in the Spirit, and thus avoid fulfilling the lusts and desires of the flesh.


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The Baptism Of The Holy Spirit Is Both To Complete The Salvation Process And To Imbue With Power For Service

(All Bible quotations, except otherwise stated, are from the American King James Version).

Before the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit did not dwell in any believer. Throughout the Old Testament, the Holy Spirit would anoint people and empower them from outside to perform God-given tasks in supernatural ways. However, prior to Pentecost, the Spirit never dwelt in anybody (other than Christ) on a resident basis. The Holy Spirit was not given to men to dwell on the inside of them until Jesus was glorified (died, resurrected and ascended back to heaven to the glory he had with God before the foundation of the world). It was 10 days after Jesus ascended to heaven that he received from the Father the promised Holy Spirit and released him upon his disciples on the day of Pentecost. From that moment, the Holy Spirit has filled, indwelt and resided in Christians. From that moment, the promise of rivers of living water flowing out of believers’ hearts unto eternal life became a reality.

John 7:37 On the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink.

John 7:38 He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.”

John 7:39 But this He spoke concerning the Spirit, whom those believing in Him would receive; for the Holy Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified (NKJV).

Luke 24:36 Now as they said these things, Jesus Himself stood in the midst of them, and said to them, “Peace to you.”

Luke 24:37 But they were terrified and frightened, and supposed they had seen a spirit.

Luke 24:38 And He said to them, “Why are you troubled? And why do doubts arise in your hearts?

Luke 24:39 Behold My hands and My feet, that it is I Myself. Handle Me and see, for a spirit does not have flesh and bones as you see I have.”

Luke 24:40 When He had said this, He showed them His hands and His feet.

Luke 24:41 But while they still did not believe for joy, and marveled, He said to them, “Have you any food here?”

Luke 24:42 So they gave Him a piece of a broiled fish and some honeycomb.

Luke 24:43 And He took it and ate in their presence.

Luke 24:44 Then He said to them, “These are the words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things must be fulfilled which were written in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms concerning Me.”

Luke 24:45 And He opened their understanding, that they might comprehend the Scriptures.

Luke 24:46 Then He said to them, “Thus it is written, and thus it was necessary for the Christ to suffer and to rise from the dead the third day,

Luke 24:47 and that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.

Luke 24:48 And you are witnesses of these things.

Luke 24:49 Behold, I send the Promise of My Father upon you; but tarry in the city of Jerusalem until you are endued with power from on high.”

Luke 24:50 And He led them out as far as Bethany, and He lifted up His hands and blessed them.

Luke 24:51 Now it came to pass, while He blessed them, that He was parted from them and carried up into heaven.

Luke 24:52 And they worshiped Him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy,

Luke 24:53 and were continually in the temple praising and blessing God. Amen (NKJV).

The Acts 1:1 The former account I made, O Theophilus, of all that Jesus began both to do and teach,

The Acts 1:2 until the day in which He was taken up, after He through the Holy Spirit had given commandments to the apostles whom He had chosen,

The Acts 1:3 to whom He also presented Himself alive after His suffering by many infallible proofs, being seen by them during forty days and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God.

The Acts 1:4 And being assembled together with them, He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father, “which,” He said, “you have heard from Me;

The Acts 1:5 for John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”

The Acts 1:6 Therefore, when they had come together, they asked Him, saying, “Lord, will You at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?”

The Acts 1:7 And He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or seasons which the Father has put in His own authority.

The Acts 1:8 But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”

The Acts 1:9 Now when He had spoken these things, while they watched, He was taken up, and a cloud received Him out of their sight (NKJV).

The Acts 2:1 And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.

The Acts 2:2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting.

The Acts 2:3 And there appeared to them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat on each of them.

The Acts 2:4 And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance (AKJV).

Peter’s sermon on the day of Pentecost brought out one salient point, now that the Holy Spirit has been released to take the place of Christ as the believer’s comforter, guide and teacher—every one who repents, believes the gospel, and gets baptised in water (as the evidence of their faith in Christ), will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit as the final part of the salvation process. Christ promised the Holy Spirit to believers as the seal and earnest of their salvation. The baptism of the Holy Spirit thus completes the salvation process of the believer, fulfilling Jesus’ teaching that a man must be born both of water and the Spirit before he can see/enter the kingdom of God (that is, before he can be saved). To be born of water refers to faith in Christ Jesus and repentance coupled with water baptism, by which past sins are remitted; to be born of the Spirit refers to the baptism of the Holy Spirit, by which the Spirit fills the believer and resides in him as a river of living water, flowing unto eternal life. Post-Pentecost, people were never considered completely saved, after repenting and getting water baptised, until they were filled with the Holy Spirit. No wonder the number question the apostles asked believers on meeting them was if they had received the Holy Spirit, for that is the seal of their salvation. It is the baptism of the Holy Spirit that puts the believer into Christ, without which such a one does not belong to Christ.

The Acts 2:37 Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said to Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brothers, what shall we do?

The Acts 2:38 Then Peter said to them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.

The Acts 2:39 For the promise is to you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the LORD our God shall call.

The Acts 2:40 And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation.

The Acts 2:41 Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added to them about three thousand souls.

The Acts 2:42 And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.

John 3:1 There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews:

John 3:2 The same came to Jesus by night, and said to him, Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that you do, except God be with him.

John 3:3 Jesus answered and said to him, Truly, truly, I say to you, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.

John 3:4 Nicodemus said to him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb, and be born?

John 3:5 Jesus answered, Truly, truly, I say to you, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.

John 3:6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.

John 3:7 Marvel not that I said to you, You must be born again.

The Acts 8:14 Now when the apostles which were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent to them Peter and John:

The Acts 8:15 Who, when they were come down, prayed for them, that they might receive the Holy Ghost:

The Acts 8:16 (For as yet he was fallen on none of them: only they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.)

The Acts 8:17 Then laid they their hands on them, and they received the Holy Ghost.

The Acts 19:1 And it came to pass, that, while Apollos was at Corinth, Paul having passed through the upper coasts came to Ephesus: and finding certain disciples,

The Acts 19:2 He said to them, Have you received the Holy Ghost since you believed? And they said to him, We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost.

The Acts 19:3 And he said to them, To what then were you baptized? And they said, To John’s baptism.

The Acts 19:4 Then said Paul, John truly baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying to the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus.

The Acts 19:5 When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.

The Acts 19:6 And when Paul had laid his hands on them, the Holy Ghost came on them; and they spoke with tongues, and prophesied.

The Acts 19:7 And all the men were about twelve.

Ephesians 1:13 In whom you also trusted, after that you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that you believed, you were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,

Ephesians 1:14 Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, to the praise of his glory.

Ephesians 4:30 And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby you are sealed to the day of redemption.

1 Corinthians 12:13 For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.

Romans 8:9 But you are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.

Romans 8:10 And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness.

Having shown how the baptism of the Holy Spirit completes the salvation process, let’s now see how the indwelling Spirit imbues Spirit-filled believers with virtue, power for service. The disciples were told by Christ to tarry until they had been endued with power from on high, which power they received with the baptism of the Holy Ghost on the day of Pentecost. With the baptism of the Holy Spirit and the resultant power, the apostles bore witness of the resurrection of Christ boldly and powerfully, with great signs and wonders accompanying their ministry. Whereas they were previously timid and fearful, and had to lock themselves up for fear of the Jews, now they were bold and forceful, taking the gospel message to even the leaders of the Jews!

The Acts 4:23 And being let go, they went to their own company, and reported all that the chief priests and elders had said to them.

The Acts 4:24 And when they heard that, they lifted up their voice to God with one accord, and said, Lord, you are God, which have made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and all that in them is:

The Acts 4:25 Who by the mouth of your servant David have said, Why did the heathen rage, and the people imagine vain things?

The Acts 4:26 The kings of the earth stood up, and the rulers were gathered together against the Lord, and against his Christ.

The Acts 4:27 For of a truth against your holy child Jesus, whom you have anointed, both Herod, and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles, and the people of Israel, were gathered together,

The Acts 4:28 For to do whatever your hand and your counsel determined before to be done.

The Acts 4:29 And now, Lord, behold their threatenings: and grant to your servants, that with all boldness they may speak your word,

The Acts 4:30 By stretching forth your hand to heal; and that signs and wonders may be done by the name of your holy child Jesus.

The Acts 4:31 And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spoke the word of God with boldness.

The Acts 4:32 And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul: neither said any of them that ought of the things which he possessed was his own; but they had all things common.

The Acts 4:33 And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was on them all.

The Acts 5:12 And by the hands of the apostles were many signs and wonders worked among the people; (and they were all with one accord in Solomon’s porch.

The Acts 5:13 And of the rest dared no man join himself to them: but the people magnified them.

The Acts 5:14 And believers were the more added to the Lord, multitudes both of men and women.)

The Acts 5:15 So that they brought forth the sick into the streets, and laid them on beds and couches, that at the least the shadow of Peter passing by might overshadow some of them.

The Acts 5:16 There came also a multitude out of the cities round about to Jerusalem, bringing sick folks, and them which were vexed with unclean spirits: and they were healed every one.

The Acts 5:17 Then the high priest rose up, and all they that were with him, (which is the sect of the Sadducees,) and were filled with indignation,

The Acts 5:18 And laid their hands on the apostles, and put them in the common prison.

The Acts 5:19 But the angel of the Lord by night opened the prison doors, and brought them forth, and said,

The Acts 5:20 Go, stand and speak in the temple to the people all the words of this life.

The Acts 5:21 And when they heard that, they entered into the temple early in the morning, and taught. But the high priest came, and they that were with him, and called the council together, and all the senate of the children of Israel, and sent to the prison to have them brought.

The Acts 5:22 But when the officers came, and found them not in the prison, they returned and told,

The Acts 5:23 Saying, The prison truly found we shut with all safety, and the keepers standing without before the doors: but when we had opened, we found no man within.

The Acts 5:24 Now when the high priest and the captain of the temple and the chief priests heard these things, they doubted of them whereunto this would grow.

The Acts 5:25 Then came one and told them, saying, Behold, the men whom you put in prison are standing in the temple, and teaching the people.

The Acts 5:26 Then went the captain with the officers, and brought them without violence: for they feared the people, lest they should have been stoned.

The Acts 5:27 And when they had brought them, they set them before the council: and the high priest asked them,

The Acts 5:28 Saying, Did not we straightly command you that you should not teach in this name? and, behold, you have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine, and intend to bring this man’s blood on us.

The Acts 5:29 Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men.

The Acts 5:30 The God of our fathers raised up Jesus, whom you slew and hanged on a tree.

The Acts 5:31 Him has God exalted with his right hand to be a Prince and a Savior, for to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins.

The Acts 5:32 And we are his witnesses of these things; and so is also the Holy Ghost, whom God has given to them that obey him.

Through his gifts and fruits, the Holy Spirit empowers believers for service, and carries out the work of sanctification within us, to reproduce the image and likeness of Christ in us. Not only does he imbue us with the power to preach the gospel with signs and wonders following, he enables and empowers us to mortify the flesh and its works, and to bear the fruits of holiness in us. He’s rightly called the Spirit of sanctification and the Spirit of holiness and of righteousness. It is by his fruits of righteousness in our lives that we are set apart as children of light, and consecrated to the service of God. We’re holy because the Spirit of holiness dwells in us and bears his fruits in us and through us.

1 Corinthians 12:7 But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit with.

1 Corinthians 12:8 For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit;

1 Corinthians 12:9 To another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit;

1 Corinthians 12:10 To another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues:

1 Corinthians 12:11 But all these works that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will.

1 Corinthians 12:12 For as the body is one, and has many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ.

Galatians 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,

Galatians 5:23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.

Galatians 5:24 And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.

Galatians 5:25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.
Galatians 5:26 Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another.

Romans 8:9 But you are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.

Romans 8:10 And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness.

Romans 8:11 But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwells in you.

Romans 8:12 Therefore, brothers, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh.

Romans 8:13 For if you live after the flesh, you shall die: but if you through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, you shall live.

Romans 8:14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.

Romans 8:15 For you have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but you have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.

Romans 8:16 The Spirit itself bears witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:

Romans 8:17 And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.

In conclusion, the baptism of the Holy Spirit completes the salvation process for those who have repented and have been baptised by water in the name of Jesus Christ, for the remission of sins. He completes the process of being born again, as we must be born both of water and the Spirit, to be saved. The Holy Spirit also imbues believers with power from on high, to be bold and effective witnesses for Christ, through his numerous gifts, which help to confirm the gospel with signs and wonders. Finally, the Holy Spirit works in the believers to produce the fruits of righteousness, helping to mortify the flesh in us and reproduce the image of Christ within us. May we then be filled with the Holy Spirit, and through the Spirit, mortify the flesh and its lusts in us, that we may abundantly bear fruits of righteousness, in order to be worthy ambassadors of Christ.

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Is It Possible To Lose One’s Salvation After Being Saved?An Examination Of The Doctrine Of The Eternal Security Of The Saved.

(All Bible quotations, unless otherwise stated, are from the English Standard Version)

“Once saved, always saved” is the mantra of those who believe in the eternal security of the saved. Proponents of this doctrine believe salvation is an eternal possession that cannot be lost for any reason. They believe one cannot be born again and later become “unborn again”; that one cannot become a child of God through the new birth experience and later become a child of the devil again, for whatever reason. What does the Bible say about this issue? Can a born again child of God backslide and be lost? Can someone who had once experienced salvation end up in hell? Let’s examine the Bible to answer these questions.

John 15:1 I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser.

John 15:2 Every branch of mine that does not bear fruit he takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit.

John 15:3 Already you are clean because of the word that I have spoken to you.

John 15:4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me.

John 15:5 I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.

John 15:6 If anyone does not abide in me he is thrown away like a branch and withers; and the branches are gathered, thrown into the fire, and burned.

The Lord Jesus, in the passage above, compared himself to a vine tree, and those who believe in him as branches of that tree. He went further to say that branches of that tree (believers) that aren’t fruitful would be cut off, and those believers that don’t abide in him would be cast away like dead branches of a tree that people gather for burning. If it’s not possible for believers who no longer abide in Christ to be cut off from him, why would he give this analogy of the relationship of believers (branches) to himself (the tree)? Remember that the Lord was addressing none other than the original twelve apostles here! (And, didn’t Judas Iscariot, who was among the twelve, end up being cut off and destroyed?). John the Baptist also used a similar analogy in his message to people who came to him for the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins. He told them that God’s axe was at the root of every tree (symbolising God’s people here), and that any tree that didn’t bring forth good fruits would be cut down and cast into the fire. Jesus too used a similar metaphor when talking about false prophets and unfruitful believers in another passage. Surely, this cutting off and casting into the fire of bad-fruit bearing trees (and non-fruitful branches) can’t be referring to unconditional salvation for all believers? Surely, it can’t be validating the doctrine of “once saved, always saved”?

Matthew 3:8 Bear fruit in keeping with repentance.

Matthew 3:9 And do not presume to say to yourselves, We have Abraham as our father, for I tell you, God is able from these stones to raise up children for Abraham.

Matthew 3:10 Even now the axe is laid to the root of the trees. Every tree therefore that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.

Matthew 3:11 I baptize you with water for repentance, but he who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire.

Matthew 3:12 His winnowing fork is in his hand, and he will clear his threshing floor and gather his wheat into the barn, but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.

Matthew 7:15 Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves.

Matthew 7:16 You will recognize them by their fruits. Are grapes gathered from thornbushes, or figs from thistles?

Matthew 7:17 So, every healthy tree bears good fruit, but the diseased tree bears bad fruit.

Matthew 7:18 A healthy tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a diseased tree bear good fruit.

Matthew 7:19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.

Matthew 7:20 Thus you will recognize them by their fruits.

Matthew 7:21 Not everyone who says to me, Lord, Lord, will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.

Matthew 7:22 On that day many will say to me, Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?

Matthew 7:23 And then will I declare to them, I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.

Scripture makes us understand that only those who believe and endure to the end shall be saved; that it’s possible to start off as a believer in Christ (saved), but get derailed along the way and get lost in the end. Some people will get saved, follow Christ and enjoy the benefits of salvation, and later draw back unto perdition (destruction). Christ threatened to remove a whole church out of its place, for abandoning its first love, if it didn’t repent and go back to where it fell from. Surely, the Lord wasn’t just making a vain threat? Surely, he meant what he said? We would be wise not to write off such remarks as empty threats! God does not mince words! He says what he means and he means what he says!

Matthew 10:16 Behold, I am sending you out as sheep in the midst of wolves, so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves.

Matthew 10:17 Beware of men, for they will deliver you over to courts and flog you in their synagogues,

Matthew 10:18 and you will be dragged before governors and kings for my sake, to bear witness before them and the Gentiles.

Matthew 10:19 When they deliver you over, do not be anxious how you are to speak or what you are to say, for what you are to say will be given to you in that hour.

Matthew 10:20 For it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.

Matthew 10:21 Brother will deliver brother over to death, and the father his child, and children will rise against parents and have them put to death,

Matthew 10:22 and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved.

Hebrews 6:4 For it is impossible to restore again to repentance those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, and have shared in the Holy Spirit,

Hebrews 6:5 and have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the age to come,

Hebrews 6:6 if they then fall away, since they are crucifying once again the Son of God to their own harm and holding him up to contempt.

Hebrews 10:32 But call to remembrance the former days, in which, after you were illuminated, you endured a great fight of afflictions;

Hebrews 10:33 Partly, whilst you were made a spectacle both by reproaches and afflictions; and partly, whilst you became companions of them that were so used.

Hebrews 10:34 For you had compassion of me in my bonds, and took joyfully the spoiling of your goods, knowing in yourselves that you have in heaven a better and an enduring substance.

Hebrews 10:35 Cast not away therefore your confidence, which has great recompense of reward.

Hebrews 10:36 For you have need of patience, that, after you have done the will of God, you might receive the promise.

Hebrews 10:37 For yet a little while, and he that shall come will come, and will not tarry.

Hebrews 10:38 Now the just shall live by faith: but if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him.

Hebrews 10:39 But we are not of them who draw back to perdition; but of them that believe to the saving of the soul (AKJV).

Revelation 2:4 But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first.

Revelation 2:5 Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first. If not, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent.

The Apostles of the Lord referred to several Old Testament Scriptures where God rejected and destroyed some of his people he had earlier saved, but who later departed from him, and used those examples to warn believers in the New Testament of a similar fate awaiting those of us who would follow their evil examples in departing from the living God. If Jehovah could destroy people he had saved earlier, because they stopped believing and following him, the same thing will happen to those of us who once believed Jesus and were saved, but later turn our backs on him and stop believing him as Lord and Saviour. Our salvation depends on our faith in Christ. For as long as we place faith in Jesus as Lord and Saviour and follow him, we’re saved. The moment we stop having faith in Christ and stop following him, we lose our salvation, for we have then cut ourselves off from Christ. Eternal life is in the Son of God, Jesus Christ. For as long as we have the Son of God, we have life. The moment we abandon him, we forfeit our eternal life. People who have believed in Christ as Lord and Saviour can fall from grace and be lost! That’s why the Scriptures constantly warn us to take heed to ourselves, to constantly examine ourselves to see whether we’re still in the faith. That’s why we’re constantly warned to remain steadfast in our faith in Christ to the very end, for only those who believe and endure to the end shall be saved! Only overcomers at the end will be saved and rewarded for their steadfast faith in Christ. Christ will deny those of his people who deny him before men. It’s not a vain threat, for he’ll acknowledge those who acknowledge him as Lord and Saviour, and deny those who deny him as such.

Hebrews 3:7 Therefore, as the Holy Spirit says, Today, if you hear his voice,

Hebrews 3:8 do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion, on the day of testing in the wilderness,

Hebrews 3:9 where your fathers put me to the test and saw my works

Hebrews 3:10 for forty years. Therefore I was provoked with that generation, and said, They always go astray in their heart; they have not known my ways.

Hebrews 3:11 As I swore in my wrath, They shall not enter my rest.

Hebrews 3:12 Take care, brothers, lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God.

Hebrews 3:13 But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called today, that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.

Hebrews 3:14 For we share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original confidence firm to the end.

Hebrews 3:15 As it is said, Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion.

Hebrews 3:16 For who were those who heard and yet rebelled? Was it not all those who left Egypt led by Moses?

Hebrews 3:17 And with whom was he provoked for forty years? Was it not with those who sinned, whose bodies fell in the wilderness?

Hebrews 3:18 And to whom did he swear that they would not enter his rest, but to those who were disobedient?

Hebrews 3:19 So we see that they were unable to enter because of unbelief.

1 Corinthians 10:1 I want you to know, brothers, that our fathers were all under the cloud, and all passed through the sea,

1 Corinthians 10:2 and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea,

1 Corinthians 10:3 and all ate the same spiritual food,

1 Corinthians 10:4 and all drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank from the spiritual Rock that followed them, and the Rock was Christ.

1 Corinthians 10:5 Nevertheless, with most of them God was not pleased, for they were overthrown in the wilderness.

1 Corinthians 10:6 Now these things took place as examples for us, that we might not desire evil as they did.

1 Corinthians 10:7 Do not be idolaters as some of them were; as it is written, The people sat down to eat and drink and rose up to play.

1 Corinthians 10:8 We must not indulge in sexual immorality as some of them did, and twenty-three thousand fell in a single day.

1 Corinthians 10:9 We must not put Christ to the test, as some of them did and were destroyed by serpents,

1 Corinthians 10:10 nor grumble, as some of them did and were destroyed by the Destroyer.

1 Corinthians 10:11 Now these things happened to them as an example, but they were written down for our instruction, on whom the end of the ages has come.

1 Corinthians 10:12 Therefore let anyone who thinks that he stands take heed lest he fall.

Jude 1:5 Now I want to remind you, although you once fully knew it, that Jesus, who saved a people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed those who did not believe.

Galatians 5:2 Look: I, Paul, say to you that if you accept circumcision, Christ will be of no advantage to you.

Galatians 5:3 I testify again to every man who accepts circumcision that he is obligated to keep the whole law.

Galatians 5:4 You are severed from Christ, you who would be justified by the law; you have fallen away from grace.

Luke 9:23 And he said to all, If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.

Luke 9:24 For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it.

Luke 9:25 For what does it profit a man if he gains the whole world and loses or forfeits himself?

Luke 9:26 For whoever is ashamed of me and of my words, of him will the Son of Man be ashamed when he comes in his glory and the glory of the Father and of the holy angels.

Matthew 10:32 So everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven,

Matthew 10:33 but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven.

2 Timothy 2:11 The saying is trustworthy, for: If we have died with him, we will also live with him;

2 Timothy 2:12 if we endure, we will also reign with him; if we deny him, he also will deny us;

2 Timothy 2:13 if we are faithless, he remains faithful— for he cannot deny himself.

2 Corinthians 13:5 Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test!

1 John 5:10 Whoever believes in the Son of God has the testimony in himself. Whoever does not believe God has made him a liar, because he has not believed in the testimony that God has borne concerning his Son.

1 John 5:11 And this is the testimony, that God gave us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.

1 John 5:12 Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life.

2 Peter 2:20 For if, after they have escaped the defilements of the world through the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and overcome, the last state has become worse for them than the first.

2 Peter 2:21 For it would have been better for them never to have known the way of righteousness than after knowing it to turn back from the holy commandment delivered to them.

2 Peter 2:22 What the true proverb says has happened to them: The dog returns to its own vomit, and the sow, after washing herself, returns to wallow in the mire.

We’re severally warned in Scriptures not to grieve the Holy Spirit, to abstain from fleshly lusts and to continually purge ourselves and remain steadfast in our faith. Why are we exhorted to do all these things? If we continually grieve the Spirit by ungodly lifestyles, what will happen? Can the Spirit depart from us? Can we become reprobates? Paul spoke of a fellow worker, Demas, who deserted him and the Lord, and went back to the world. If Demas remained in that state until his death, what do we think would be his fate? Are there no consequences for a backslider who never comes back to the Lord and to the faith? Paul also talked of some disciples who had previously believed the truth of the gospel, but later swerved from the faith. What would happen to such if they died in their errors? In his letter to the Corinthians, Paul warned believers about certain categories of people who would not inherit the kingdom of God. Was such a warning necessary if no believer could fail to inherit the kingdom?

Ephesians 4:30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.

2 Timothy 2:16 But avoid irreverent babble, for it will lead people into more and more ungodliness,

2 Timothy 2:17 and their talk will spread like gangrene. Among them are Hymenaeus and Philetus,

2 Timothy 2:18 who have swerved from the truth, saying that the resurrection has already happened. They are upsetting the faith of some.

2 Timothy 2:19 But God’s firm foundation stands, bearing this seal: The Lord knows those who are his, and, Let everyone who names the name of the Lord depart from iniquity.

2 Timothy 2:20 Now in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and silver but also of wood and clay, some for honorable use, some for dishonorable.

2 Timothy 2:21 Therefore, if anyone cleanses himself from what is dishonorable, he will be a vessel for honorable use, set apart as holy, useful to the master of the house, ready for every good work.

2 Timothy 4:10 For Demas, in love with this present world, has deserted me and gone to Thessalonica. Crescens has gone to Galatia, Titus to Dalmathi

1 Corinthians 6:9 Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality,

1 Corinthians 6:10 nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.

Proponents of unconditional eternal security of the saved (once saved, never can be lost) quote the popular Scripture that has the Lord saying: “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand” (John 10:27-29). It’s true that all that the Father has given Christ will come to him. But, that also included people like Judas Iscariot, Demas, etc, who later fell from grace and were lost. It’s also true that no one can pluck any man out of God’s hands. However, a man can pluck himself out of God’s hands! A man can cut himself off from God and from his grace! Israel was engraved in the palm of God’s hands, and her walls were continually before God (Isaiah 49:16). Israel could not be cursed, nor could she be defeated, as long as she remained in God’s hands (Numbers 23:7-23). However, Israel abandoned the loving and protective arms of Jehovah and went into idolatory, and she ended up being cursed, defeated and disgraced! (Numbers 26:1-18). They’ve had their natural branch cut off from God’s tree because of rebellion! In the same way, a believer in God’s hands today can cut himself off and be lost, if he rebels and abandons God’s protective care. For such people that abandon the faith and go back to the world, God is not obligated anymore to protect and preserve them. Like Israel of Old, they would be left to their own fate. They would thus bring curses and damnation upon themselves.

Romans 11:13 Now I am speaking to you Gentiles. Inasmuch then as I am an apostle to the Gentiles, I magnify my ministry

Romans 11:14 in order somehow to make my fellow Jews jealous, and thus save some of them.

Romans 11:15 For if their rejection means the reconciliation of the world, what will their acceptance mean but life from the dead?

Romans 11:16 If the dough offered as firstfruits is holy, so is the whole lump, and if the root is holy, so are the branches.

Romans 11:17 But if some of the branches were broken off, and you, although a wild olive shoot, were grafted in among the others and now share in the nourishing root of the olive tree,

Romans 11:18 do not be arrogant toward the branches. If you are, remember it is not you who support the root, but the root that supports you.

Romans 11:19 Then you will say, Branches were broken off so that I might be grafted in.

Romans 11:20 That is true. They were broken off because of their unbelief, but you stand fast through faith. So do not become proud, but stand in awe.

Romans 11:21 For if God did not spare the natural branches, neither will he spare you.

Romans 11:22 Note then the kindness and the severity of God: severity toward those who have fallen, but God’s kindness to you, provided you continue in his kindness. Otherwise you too will be cut off.

Romans 11:23 And even they, if they do not continue in their unbelief, will be grafted in, for God has the power to graft them in again.

Romans 11:24 For if you were cut from what is by nature a wild olive tree, and grafted, contrary to nature, into a cultivated olive tree, how much more will these, the natural branches, be grafted back into their own olive tree.

Matthew 23:37 O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! How often would I have gathered your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you would not!

Matthew 23:38 See, your house is left to you desolate.

Matthew 23:39 For I tell you, you will not see me again, until you say, Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.

Finally, Scripture promises that some people’s names will be removed from the book of life! Yes, some people who were once saved and had their names written in the book of life would have their names expunged from there, for failing to keep the faith, for failing to endure to the end and for failing to overcome. God promised that he would remove from his book of life those who sinned against him. Christ promised not to remove from the book of life those believers who would overcome to the end. This means that those who fail to overcome will be removed from the book of life! Nothing can be plainer than this truth! For as long as we remain in Christ, our salvation is secure, and our names will not be removed from the book of life. If we lose faith in Christ, cut ourselves off from him and backslide totally and completely, our names will be removed from the book of life, and we will be eternally lost if we die in that state! If someone’s name is removed from the book of life, it means the name was once in the book of life. Who else have their names in the book of life but the saved and the redeemed? This means that the once saved and redeemed can be lost!

Exodus 32:31 So Moses returned to the LORD and said, Alas, this people have sinned a great sin. They have made for themselves gods of gold.

Exodus 32:32 But now, if you will forgive their sin—but if not, please blot me out of your book that you have written.

Exodus 32:33 But the LORD said to Moses, Whoever has sinned against me, I will blot out of my book.

Revelation 3:5 He that overcomes, 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 (AKJV).

Revelation 20:12 And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.

Revelation 20:13 And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.

Revelation 20:14 And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.

Revelation 20:15 And whoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire (AKJV).

In conclusion, salvation is contingent on one’s faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour. Eternal life is found only in Christ Jesus. Whoever has Christ has eternal life; whoever does not have Christ has the wrath of God abiding in him/her. For as long as a believer abides in Christ and Christ abides in him, he has eternal life and will bear the fruits of righteousness. If, however, a believer stops abiding in Christ and stops having faith in him, he’ll be cut off from eternal life and cast away as a dead branch to be burnt. Believers can have their names expunged from the book of life, for failing to endure till the end, and for failing to overcome. For sure, no one can pluck a believer out of God’s hands. However, the believer can remove himself out of God’s protective care, by ceasing to have faith in God. When someone who once believed and experienced salvation backslides, goes back to the world and dies in their backslidden state, it will be as though they were never saved. Their previous righteousness and walk with the Lord will not count. That’s what the Bible teaches. Thus, the doctrine of unconditional eternal security of the saved is unscriptural. Salvation can be lost, and the once saved person will be damned if he backslides and dies in his backslidden state.

Ezekiel 33:12 And you, son of man, say to your people, The righteousness of the righteous shall not deliver him when he transgresses, and as for the wickedness of the wicked, he shall not fall by it when he turns from his wickedness, and the righteous shall not be able to live by his righteousness when he sins.

Ezekiel 33:13 Though I say to the righteous that he shall surely live, yet if he trusts in his righteousness and does injustice, none of his righteous deeds shall be remembered, but in his injustice that he has done he shall die.

Ezekiel 33:14 Again, though I say to the wicked, You shall surely die, yet if he turns from his sin and does what is just and right,

Ezekiel 33:15 if the wicked restores the pledge, gives back what he has taken by robbery, and walks in the statutes of life, not doing injustice, he shall surely live; he shall not die.

Ezekiel 33:16 None of the sins that he has committed shall be remembered against him. He has done what is just and right; he shall surely live.

Ezekiel 33:17 Yet your people say, The way of the Lord is not just, when it is their own way that is not just.

Ezekiel 33:18 When the righteous turns from his righteousness and does injustice, he shall die for it.

Ezekiel 33:19 And when the wicked turns from his wickedness and does what is just and right, he shall live by them.

Ezekiel 33:20 Yet you say, The way of the Lord is not just. O house of Israel, I will judge each of you according to his ways.

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The Grace Of God For Salvation Is Available For All Men: A Refutal Of The Doctrine Of Selective And Arbitrary Predestination Of Men Unto Salvation

(All Bible quotations, except otherwise stated, are from the American King James Version).

The question as to whether salvation is available for all men, or only for some predestined elect, is a cardinal focus of reformed theology. Those who believe in absolute predestination of the soul deny human freedom in salvation. According to proponents of predestination, only those chosen before the foundation of the world by divine election can and will be saved. All others, irrespective of their faith in God, cannot be saved, as they’re not part of the elect. So goes the doctrine of predestination. Is arbitrary predestination the basis of salvation? Can all men be saved? Is there a place for human freedom in salvation, or is salvation all of God, without any human contribution? This article will attempt to answer these questions through a careful examination of the Scriptures.

Titus 2:11 For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men,

Titus 2:12 Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world;

Titus 2:13 Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Savior Jesus Christ;

Titus 2:14 Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify to himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.

The Apostle Paul makes us understand in the passage above that the saving grace of God is available to ALL MEN! The grace for salvation can be accessed by all! And why shouldn’t it be so? After all, Jesus Christ died for the sins of all people, and not just for those in the Church! He paid the price for the sins of all men, from every tribe and tongue and nation. He’s the saviour of the whole world! He’s the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the whole world!

1 Timothy 2:5 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;

1 Timothy 2:6 Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.

1 Timothy 4:10 For therefore we both labor and suffer reproach, because we trust in the living God, who is the Savior of all men, specially of those that believe.

John 1:29 The next day John sees Jesus coming to him, and said, Behold the Lamb of God, which takes away the sin of the world.

1 John 2:1 My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anybody does sin, we have an advocate with the Father —Jesus Christ, the Righteous One.

1 John 2:2 He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world (NIV).

It shouldn’t be difficult to fathom why God would extend saving grace to all men, and why he would send a saviour for the entire race. The answer lies in the depth of God’s love for mankind. God loves all men and wants all to come to the knowledge of the truth. He desires for all men to be saved. All men are his creation, and he cares for all, both the good and the evil. He doesn’t want any man to perish. For this reason, he gives all men the grace and the space to repent, and doesn’t give up on anyone till their very last moment on earth! God does not delight in the death of the wicked, but rejoices when any wicked person repents and comes back to him.

John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

John 3:17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

John 3:18 He that believes on him is not condemned: but he that believes not is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

1 Timothy 2:1 I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men;

1 Timothy 2:2 For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.

1 Timothy 2:3 For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior;

1 Timothy 2:4 Who will have all men to be saved, and to come to the knowledge of the truth.

2 Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance (ESV).

Ezekiel 33:11 Say to them, As I live, said the Lord GOD, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live: turn you, turn you from your evil ways; for why will you die, O house of Israel?

We see then that salvation is a free gift of God to all men. Whoever believes in the Son of God and confesses him as Lord and Saviour will be saved. Anyone who believes in the atoning sacrifice of Christ at Calvary and appropriates it for himself will experience God’s salvation. There’s no exclusive group of people for whom salvation is predestined. There’s no particular group of people for whom salvation is foreclosed. God is no respecter of persons; anyone who fears God and draws near to him will be accepted by God. The promise of salvation is for “whosoever will“, “he that believes“, “all that believe“, etc. It is for all men and all women!

Romans 10:11 For the scripture said, Whoever believes on him shall not be ashamed.

Romans 10:12 For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich to all that call on him.

Romans 10:13 For whoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.

Mark 16:15 And he said to them, Go you into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

Mark 16:16 He that believes and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believes not shall be damned.

The Acts 10:34 Then Peter opened his mouth, and said, Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons:

The Acts 10:35 But in every nation he that fears him, and works righteousness, is accepted with him.

Matthew 11:28 Come to me, all you that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

Revelation 22:17 And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that hears say, Come. And let him that is thirsty come. And whoever will, let him take the water of life freely.

Exponents of arbitrary predestination teach that God foreordained and elected some people to salvation before the foundation of the world, while sentencing others to eternal damnation, for no reason other than his good pleasure. Based on this teaching, no matter what anyone does, those predestined to salvation must be saved, and those foreordained to damnation must be damned! There is thus no room and no place for the exercise of free will. In essence, we’re all just puppets/automatons in the hands of God. Our actions have no consequences whatsoever, as the elect of God can do no wrong (because of unconditional love bestowed upon them), while those reserved for destruction can do no right, because of God’s perpetual displeasure with them. This teaching collapses everywhere in the face of Scripture, as it has no biblical foundation. First, salvation and redemption are available to all, and not just to a predestined few, as shown above. It flies in the face of countless Scriptures to say that God planned to save only a select few, when the Bible plainly teaches that God desires for all men to be saved, and that it’s not his will that any man should perish.

Second, predestination is not arbitrary; it’s based on God’s foreknowledge. Because God can see the end from the beginning, and because he knows all things, he is able to know before hand those who would believe the gospel and those who wouldn’t, even before they were born. Based on this foreknowledge, he calls those people he knew would choose him his own, while disowning those he knew would not accept his salvation. The elect according to the foreknowledge of God will hear and receive the word of God and be saved, thus confirming God’s foreknowledge of them! Predestination is thus not arbitrary, but is based on God’s foreknowledge of people before they come into existence. That’s what Scripture teaches!

Romans 8:28 And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.

Romans 8:29 For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.

Romans 8:30 And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified (ESV).

1 Peter 1:1 Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, To those who are elect exiles of the dispersion in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia,

1 Peter 1:2 according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, in the sanctification of the Spirit, for obedience to Jesus Christ and for sprinkling with his blood: May grace and peace be multiplied to you (ESV).

Genesis 18:17 And the LORD said, Shall I hide from Abraham that thing which I do;

Genesis 18:18 Seeing that Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him?

Genesis 18:19 For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the LORD, to do justice and judgment; that the LORD may bring on Abraham that which he has spoken of him.

The Acts 15:18 Known to God are all his works from the beginning of the world.

Why would the Scriptures ask men to choose between good and evil, and between life and death, if we do not have the freewill to make that choice? Will God be justified to judge us according to our works if we were divinely programmed to do those works like automatons? If human freedom is out of the question, and arbitrary predestination is the basis of salvation, then there should be no need for judging men at all, since all are just fulfilling the divine will. There should be no punishment for human actions, since all human actions are just manifestations of the divine will. Why do we need to preach the gospel to all creatures if those to be saved would be saved anyway, and those to be damned will be damned no matter what we do? If the outcomes of our lives are already predetermined and cast in stone, why do we work and toil and labour? Why don’t we just sit still and let God’s will be done?

Scripture teaches us that humans are free moral agents with the capacity to make moral choices. We’re also taught in Scripture that our actions and our choices do have consequences. We’re not some robots or automatons programmed to do God’s will without a mind of our own! We’re not puppets being manipulated by divinity. Man was created in God’s image and likeness, with the ability to choose between good and evil, else God’s command for man to shun evil and choose good would be meaningless! We can choose to follow God and be saved, or we can choose to turn our backs on him and be damned! We can choose to be on God’s side, or we can choose to be his adversary. And, whatever moral choices we make, God respects and honours them, and will justly judge us based on our actions at the end of it all. The only way God can be a fair and a just judge is if all men are placed on the same footing and given the same chance to serve and follow God. Anything other than that would make God unjust and unfair. But the Bible makes it abundantly clear that Jehovah is a God of justice. He’s the epitome of justice and fairness, as he gives everyone equal opportunities for salvation.

Genesis 1:26 And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.

Genesis 1:27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.

Genesis 2:15 And the LORD God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it.

Genesis 2:16 And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat:

Genesis 2:17 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, you shall not eat of it: for in the day that you eat thereof you shall surely die.

Deuteronomy 30:15 See, I have set before you this day life and good, and death and evil;

Deuteronomy 30:16 In that I command you this day to love the LORD your God, to walk in his ways, and to keep his commandments and his statutes and his judgments, that you may live and multiply: and the LORD your God shall bless you in the land where you go to possess it.

Deuteronomy 30:17 But if your heart turn away, so that you will not hear, but shall be drawn away, and worship other gods, and serve them;

Deuteronomy 30:18 I denounce to you this day, that you shall surely perish, and that you shall not prolong your days on the land, where you pass over Jordan to go to possess it.

Deuteronomy 30:19 I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both you and your seed may live:

Joshua 24:15 And if it seem evil to you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom you will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.

Ezekiel 33:11 Say to them, As I live, said the Lord GOD, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live: turn you, turn you from your evil ways; for why will you die, O house of Israel?

Revelation 20:11 And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them.

Revelation 20:12 And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.

Revelation 20:13 And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.

Isaiah 45:21 Tell you, and bring them near; yes, let them take counsel together: who has declared this from ancient time? who has told it from that time? have not I the LORD? and there is no God else beside me; a just God and a Savior; there is none beside me.

Deuteronomy 32:4 He is the Rock, his work is perfect: for all his ways are judgment: a God of truth and without iniquity, just and right is he.

In conclusion, there is overwhelming evidence from the Scriptures that salvation is a free gift of God which is available to all men. The grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, even though some will reject it. All men are created free moral agents with the capacity to choose between good and evil. No one is arbitrarily predestined to salvation, as no one is also arbitrarily foreordained to eternal damnation. Our final destination is contingent on our choices here. If we choose life, we shall live eternally. If we reject life, we shall die. If we accept God’s salvation in Christ, we shall be saved; if we reject it, we shall be damned. Ultimately, we’re responsible for our actions and our final destination. Divine predestination and foreordination are based on divine foreknowledge of our actions. In predestination, God only affirms the choices he knew we would make, based on his foreknowledge. Predestination is just an affirmation of human freedom before it actually takes place, like being able to see and record tomorrow before it happens. The record does not impose on men what they must do; it only foresees and records before hand what men will do on their own, as free moral agents.

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Judas Betrayed Jesus And Went To Hell; Peter Denied Jesus And Was Forgiven And Restored: Is There Partiality With God?

(Unless otherwise stated, all Bible quotations are from the American King James Version).

Not a few people have wondered about the contrasting fates of Judas and Peter, following their betrayal and denial of Jesus Christ respectively. For betraying Jesus to his enemies leading to his capture and death, Judas ended up in hell. For denying Jesus thrice (and swearing and cursing while doing so), Peter still found forgiveness, and was restored as an apostle and a pillar in the church of Christ. Is there unrighteousness with God in the way both apostles were treated after committing almost identical sins? After all, Jesus had taught that anyone who denied him before men would be denied before his Father and the holy angels. So, why did Peter who thrice denied Christ before men, and cursed while doing so, find mercy before God, while Judas ended up in hell? Is God partial? We shall examine the Scriptures to answer these questions.

The important point to understand in the issues of Judas’ and Peter’s betrayal and denial, respectively, is that neither of them committed the unpardonable sin. The only sin we’re told in the New Testament that’s unpardonable is blasphemy against the Holy Spirit. Both apostles sinned against the Lord, not against the Holy Spirit, and every sin against the Son of Man (the Lord Jesus) is pardonable. Therefore, both Judas’ and Peter’s sins were not unpardonable. So, if both Peter’s and Judas’ sins were not unpardonable, we must look at the response of both men after they sinned, to find out why one was forgiven and the other was not, after both men had committed almost identical sins against the Lord.

Matthew 12:31 Why I say to you, All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven to men: but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven to men.

Matthew 12:32 And whoever speaks a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but whoever speaks against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, neither in the world to come.

Let’s start with Judas. After betraying the Lord and discovering that the Lord’s capture by the Jewish leaders had led to a trial which could result in Christ’s death, Judas felt sorry, repented, and returned the money he was given for betraying the Lord to his enemies. He experienced sorrow which led to repentance, which is a prerequisite for procuring divine pardon by any sinner. If sorrow leads to repentance that moves the repentant sinner to ask for God’s pardon and forgiveness, God will pardon and forgive the sin involved, as long as it’s not the unpardonable sin, which Judas’ sin wasn’t. That is the endproduct of godly sorrow—repentance that leads to forgiveness of sin and salvation. However, instead of asking for forgiveness, Judas’ sorrowful repentance led him to kill himself! He didn’t sorrow unto conversion, but to death! That’s the sorrow of this world and not godly sorrow! So, though Judas sorrowfully repented of his betrayal of Christ, he killed himself rather than seek for forgiveness, adding iniquity to iniquity. Thus, Judas died without obtaining remission for his sins. He died a sinner, and invariably went to hell. Judas could have been forgiven of his betrayal if he had asked for God’s forgiveness, as Jesus had already asked the Father to forgive all those who conspired to kill him. But to receive the forgiveness Christ prayed for, all involved must repent and ask for mercy, which Judas did not do. We see thousands of Jews who had supported and/or encouraged the killing of Jesus repenting and believing the gospel on the day of Pentecost and therafter, and being forgiven and saved. Judas sealed his doom by refusing to appropriate the forgiveness that was readily available for his sin, and killed himself instead.

Matthew 27:1 When the morning was come, all the chief priests and elders of the people took counsel against Jesus to put him to death:

Matthew 27:2 And when they had bound him, they led him away, and delivered him to Pontius Pilate the governor.

Matthew 27:3 Then Judas, which had betrayed him, when he saw that he was condemned, repented himself, and brought again the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and elders,

Matthew 27:4 Saying, I have sinned in that I have betrayed the innocent blood. And they said, What is that to us? see you to that.

Matthew 27:5 And he cast down the pieces of silver in the temple, and departed, and went and hanged himself.

2 Corinthians 7:8 For though I made you sorry with a letter, I do not repent, though I did repent: for I perceive that the same letter has made you sorry, though it were but for a season.

2 Corinthians 7:9 Now I rejoice, not that you were made sorry, but that you sorrowed to repentance: for you were made sorry after a godly manner, that you might receive damage by us in nothing.

2 Corinthians 7:10 For godly sorrow works repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world works death.

Luke 23:33 And when they were come to the place, which is called Calvary, there they crucified him, and the malefactors, one on the right hand, and the other on the left.

Luke 23:34 Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. And they parted his raiment, and cast lots.

The Acts 2:22 You men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the middle of you, as you yourselves also know:

The Acts 2:23 Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, you have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain:

The Acts 2:24 Whom God has raised up, having loosed the pains of death: because it was not possible that he should be held of it.

The Acts 2:36 Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God has made the same Jesus, whom you have crucified, both Lord and Christ.

The Acts 2:37 Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said to Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brothers, what shall we do?

The Acts 2:38 Then Peter said to them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.

The Acts 2:39 For the promise is to you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the LORD our God shall call.

The Acts 2:40 And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation.

The Acts 2:41 Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added to them about three thousand souls.

The Acts 3:13 The God of Abraham, and of Isaac, and of Jacob, the God of our fathers, has glorified his Son Jesus; whom you delivered up, and denied him in the presence of Pilate, when he was determined to let him go.

The Acts 3:14 But you denied the Holy One and the Just, and desired a murderer to be granted to you;

The Acts 3:15 And killed the Prince of life, whom God has raised from the dead; whereof we are witnesses.

The Acts 3:16 And his name through faith in his name has made this man strong, whom you see and know: yes, the faith which is by him has given him this perfect soundness in the presence of you all.

The Acts 3:17 And now, brothers, I know that through ignorance you did it, as did also your rulers.

The Acts 3:18 But those things, which God before had showed by the mouth of all his prophets, that Christ should suffer, he has so fulfilled.

The Acts 3:19 Repent you therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord.

Now, let’s turn to Peter. Immediately after denying Jesus, Peter regretted his actions, became sorrowful and wept bitterly. However, he didn’t go about killing himself. He repented and became converted. He accepted the forgiveness that was readily available for his sin and continued loving and following the Lord and hanging out with the rest of the apostles. The Lord saw and recognised this conversion in Peter and even foretold of it before Peter fell. Therefore, after his resurrection, Jesus sent Mary Magdalene to tell the rest of the apostles that he had risen, specifically including Peter among those to be informed, showing that Peter’s denial had been forgiven, with him having repented and received God’s pardon and mercy. When the risen Lord met Peter with the rest of the apostles fishing at the sea of Tiberias, he again confirmed Peter’s conversion, by asking Peter if he loved the Lord. Based on Peter’s confession of love for the Lord, he was commissioned afresh to take care of God’s sheep and to feed his flocks. From that moment onward, we see the rededicated Peter serving God so zealously and ending up as a martyr for the Lord. Thus, Peter’s reinstatement, after his denial of Jesus, was not based on favouritism or partiality on God’s part, but on Peter’s repentance and conversion. This pathway was also available for Judas, but was not utilised by him, with Judas choosing to kill himself instead of repenting and accepting God’s pardon for his transgression.

Luke 22:47 And while he yet spoke, behold a multitude, and he that was called Judas, one of the twelve, went before them, and drew near to Jesus to kiss him.

Luke 22:48 But Jesus said to him, Judas, betray you the Son of man with a kiss?

Luke 22:49 When they which were about him saw what would follow, they said to him, Lord, shall we smite with the sword?

Luke 22:50 And one of them smote the servant of the high priest, and cut off his right ear.

Luke 22:51 And Jesus answered and said, Suffer you thus far. And he touched his ear, and healed him.

Luke 22:52 Then Jesus said to the chief priests, and captains of the temple, the elders, which were come to him, Be you come out, as against a thief, with swords and staves?

Luke 22:53 When I was daily with you in the temple, you stretched forth no hands against me: but this is your hour, and the power of darkness.

Luke 22:54 Then took they him, and led him, and brought him into the high priest’s house. And Peter followed afar off.

Luke 22:55 And when they had kindled a fire in the middle of the hall, and were set down together, Peter sat down among them.

Luke 22:56 But a certain maid beheld him as he sat by the fire, and earnestly looked on him, and said, This man was also with him.

Luke 22:57 And he denied him, saying, Woman, I know him not.

Luke 22:58 And after a little while another saw him, and said, You are also of them. And Peter said, Man, I am not.

Luke 22:59 And about the space of one hour after another confidently affirmed, saying, Of a truth this fellow also was with him: for he is a Galilaean.

Luke 22:60 And Peter said, Man, I know not what you say. And immediately, while he yet spoke, the cock crew.

Luke 22:61 And the Lord turned, and looked on Peter. And Peter remembered the word of the Lord, how he had said to him, Before the cock crow, you shall deny me thrice.

Luke 22:62 And Peter went out, and wept bitterly.

Luke 22:31 And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan has desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat:

Luke 22:32 But I have prayed for you, that your faith fail not: and when you are converted, strengthen your brothers.

Luke 22:33 And he said to him, Lord, I am ready to go with you, both into prison, and to death.

Luke 22:34 And he said, I tell you, Peter, the cock shall not crow this day, before that you shall thrice deny that you know me.

Mark 16:1 And when the sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Salome, had bought sweet spices, that they might come and anoint him.

Mark 16:2 And very early in the morning the first day of the week, they came to the sepulcher at the rising of the sun.

Mark 16:3 And they said among themselves, Who shall roll us away the stone from the door of the sepulcher?

Mark 16:4 And when they looked, they saw that the stone was rolled away: for it was very great.

Mark 16:5 And entering into the sepulcher, they saw a young man sitting on the right side, clothed in a long white garment; and they were affrighted.

Mark 16:6 And he said to them, Be not affrighted: You seek Jesus of Nazareth, which was crucified: he is risen; he is not here: behold the place where they laid him.

Mark 16:7 But go your way, tell his disciples and Peter that he goes before you into Galilee: there shall you see him, as he said to you.

John 21:1 After these things Jesus showed himself again to the disciples at the sea of Tiberias; and on this wise showed he himself.

John 21:2 There were together Simon Peter, and Thomas called Didymus, and Nathanael of Cana in Galilee, and the sons of Zebedee, and two other of his disciples.

John 21:3 Simon Peter said to them, I go a fishing. They say to him, We also go with you. They went forth, and entered into a ship immediately; and that night they caught nothing.

John 21:4 But when the morning was now come, Jesus stood on the shore: but the disciples knew not that it was Jesus.

John 21:5 Then Jesus said to them, Children, have you any meat? They answered him, No.

John 21:6 And he said to them, Cast the net on the right side of the ship, and you shall find. They cast therefore, and now they were not able to draw it for the multitude of fishes.

John 21:7 Therefore that disciple whom Jesus loved said to Peter, It is the Lord. Now when Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he girt his fisher’s coat to him, (for he was naked,) and did cast himself into the sea.

John 21:8 And the other disciples came in a little ship; (for they were not far from land, but as it were two hundred cubits,) dragging the net with fishes.

John 21:9 As soon then as they were come to land, they saw a fire of coals there, and fish laid thereon, and bread.

John 21:10 Jesus said to them, Bring of the fish which you have now caught.

John 21:11 Simon Peter went up, and drew the net to land full of great fishes, an hundred and fifty and three: and for all there were so many, yet was not the net broken.

John 21:12 Jesus said to them, Come and dine. And none of the disciples dared ask him, Who are you? knowing that it was the Lord.

John 21:13 Jesus then comes, and takes bread, and gives them, and fish likewise.

John 21:14 This is now the third time that Jesus showed himself to his disciples, after that he was risen from the dead.

John 21:15 So when they had dined, Jesus said to Simon Peter, Simon, son of Jonas, love you me more than these? He said to him, Yes, Lord; you know that I love you. He said to him, Feed my lambs.

John 21:16 He said to him again the second time, Simon, son of Jonas, love you me? He said to him, Yes, Lord; you know that I love you. He said to him, Feed my sheep.

John 21:17 He said to him the third time, Simon, son of Jonas, love you me? Peter was grieved because he said to him the third time, Love you me? And he said to him, Lord, you know all things; you know that I love you. Jesus said to him, Feed my sheep.

John 21:18 Truly, truly, I say to you, When you were young, you gird yourself, and walked where you would: but when you shall be old, you shall stretch forth your hands, and another shall gird you, and carry you where you would not.

John 21:19 This spoke he, signifying by what death he should glorify God. And when he had spoken this, he said to him, Follow me.

Joseph, a type of Christ in the Old Testament, who himself was betrayed and sold by his brothers into what should have been his death, displayed the Spirit of Christ by readily forgiving his brothers, when he was in a position of power to punish them for what they did to him, when they asked for mercy. If Joseph could readily forgive his brothers who planned to kill him and conspired and sold him into slavery, is it too much for Christ to forgive Judas if he had asked for forgiveness, instead of killing himself? Is it too much to expect Christ, who taught us to love our enemies and to bless those who despitefully use and abuse us, to forgive a man who betrayed him, if that man had repented and sought for forgiveness? Nothing in Christ’s character and teaching suggests he wouldn’t have forgiven Judas and restored him as an apostle, if Judas had repented and asked for forgiveness for betraying the Lord.

Genesis 37:17 And the man said, They are departed hence; for I heard them say, Let us go to Dothan. And Joseph went after his brothers, and found them in Dothan.

Genesis 37:18 And when they saw him afar off, even before he came near to them, they conspired against him to slay him.

Genesis 37:19 And they said one to another, Behold, this dreamer comes.

Genesis 37:20 Come now therefore, and let us slay him, and cast him into some pit, and we will say, Some evil beast has devoured him: and we shall see what will become of his dreams.

Genesis 37:21 And Reuben heard it, and he delivered him out of their hands; and said, Let us not kill him.

Genesis 37:22 And Reuben said to them, Shed no blood, but cast him into this pit that is in the wilderness, and lay no hand on him; that he might rid him out of their hands, to deliver him to his father again.

Genesis 37:23 And it came to pass, when Joseph was come to his brothers, that they stripped Joseph out of his coat, his coat of many colors that was on him;

Genesis 37:24 And they took him, and cast him into a pit: and the pit was empty, there was no water in it.

Genesis 37:25 And they sat down to eat bread: and they lifted up their eyes and looked, and, behold, a company of Ishmeelites came from Gilead with their camels bearing spices and balm and myrrh, going to carry it down to Egypt.

Genesis 37:26 And Judah said to his brothers, What profit is it if we slay our brother, and conceal his blood?

Genesis 37:27 Come, and let us sell him to the Ishmeelites, and let not our hand be on him; for he is our brother and our flesh. And his brothers were content.

Genesis 37:28 Then there passed by Midianites merchants; and they drew and lifted up Joseph out of the pit, and sold Joseph to the Ishmeelites for twenty pieces of silver: and they brought Joseph into Egypt.

Genesis 50:15 And when Joseph’s brothers saw that their father was dead, they said, Joseph will peradventure hate us, and will certainly requite us all the evil which we did to him.

Genesis 50:16 And they sent a messenger to Joseph, saying, Your father did command before he died, saying,

Genesis 50:17 So shall you say to Joseph, Forgive, I pray you now, the trespass of your brothers, and their sin; for they did to you evil: and now, we pray you, forgive the trespass of the servants of the God of your father. And Joseph wept when they spoke to him.

Genesis 50:18 And his brothers also went and fell down before his face; and they said, Behold, we be your servants.

Genesis 50:19 And Joseph said to them, Fear not: for am I in the place of God?

Genesis 50:20 But as for you, you thought evil against me; but God meant it to good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive.

Genesis 50:21 Now therefore fear you not: I will nourish you, and your little ones. And he comforted them, and spoke kindly to them.

Matthew 5:43 You have heard that it has been said, You shall love your neighbor, and hate your enemy.

Matthew 5:44 But I say to you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which spitefully use you, and persecute you;

Matthew 5:45 That you may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he makes his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.

Matthew 5:46 For if you love them which love you, what reward have you? do not even the publicans the same?

Matthew 5:47 And if you salute your brothers only, what do you more than others? do not even the publicans so?

Matthew 5:48 Be you therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.

Thus, it is evident from Scriptures that there’s no partiality or unrighteousness with God. God is no respecter of persons. He honours whoever honours and obeys his commandments, while despising whoever despises his words. Apart from blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, which is the unpardonable sin, there is pardon for every other sin. Though our sins may be as scarlet, they can be as white as snow, if we repent and forsake them, and accept God’s pardon in Christ Jesus. Judas refused to repent and accept God’s pardon for betraying Christ, and decided to kill himself instead, choosing to sorrow unto death thereby. He went to hell because he refused to appropriate for himself the pardon Christ offered on the cross to all those responsible for killing him. Peter, on the other hand, sorrowed in a godly manner, leading to his repentance, conversion and restoration. God was not partial in restoring Peter to his apostolic position, after denying Jesus. God simply responded, as he promised in his word, to every sinner who would repent, forsake his sins and accept his pardon. Whoever does that will be accepted by God and restored to fellowship and communion with him after sinning. That’s a universal law of God that applies equally to all men and can be activated by all sinners. There is no partiality with God when dealing with men’s sins. God has a similar requirement for all men when it comes to what men must do to find favour in his sight after they’ve sinned. God does not delight in the death of the wicked, but wishes that every wicked person would repent and be saved. It’s not his will that any man should perish, but that all should come to repentance. Therefore, it would be against God’s will to refuse to pardon any sinner who repents and forsakes his sins.

1 Samuel 2:30 Why the LORD God of Israel said, I said indeed that your house, and the house of your father, should walk before me for ever: but now the LORD said, Be it far from me; for them that honor me I will honor, and they that despise me shall be lightly esteemed.

The Acts 10:34 Then Peter opened his mouth, and said, Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons:

The Acts 10:35 But in every nation he that fears him, and works righteousness, is accepted with him.

Isaiah 1:16 Wash you, make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before my eyes; cease to do evil;

Isaiah 1:17 Learn to do well; seek judgment, relieve the oppressed, judge the fatherless, plead for the widow.

Isaiah 1:18 Come now, and let us reason together, said the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.

Isaiah 1:19 If you be willing and obedient, you shall eat the good of the land:

Isaiah 1:20 But if you refuse and rebel, you shall be devoured with the sword: for the mouth of the LORD has spoken it.

Proverbs 28:13 He that covers his sins shall not prosper: but whoever confesses and forsakes them shall have mercy.

1 John 1:8 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.

1 John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

Ezekiel 33:11 Say to them, As I live, said the Lord GOD, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live: turn you, turn you from your evil ways; for why will you die, O house of Israel?

Ezekiel 33:12 Therefore, you son of man, say to the children of your people, The righteousness of the righteous shall not deliver him in the day of his transgression: as for the wickedness of the wicked, he shall not fall thereby in the day that he turns from his wickedness; neither shall the righteous be able to live for his righteousness in the day that he sins.

Ezekiel 33:14 Again, when I say to the wicked, You shall surely die; if he turn from his sin, and do that which is lawful and right;

Ezekiel 33:15 If the wicked restore the pledge, give again that he had robbed, walk in the statutes of life, without committing iniquity; he shall surely live, he shall not die.

Ezekiel 33:16 None of his sins that he has committed shall be mentioned to him: he has done that which is lawful and right; he shall surely live.

1 Timothy 2:1 I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men;

1 Timothy 2:3 For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior;

1 Timothy 2:4 Who will have all men to be saved, and to come to the knowledge of the truth.

2 Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is long-suffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.

In conclusion, God did not display any partiality or favouritism in his dealings with Judas and Peter, after both apostles betrayed and denied Jesus Christ, respectively. Judas went to hell for betraying Jesus simply because he refused to repent and receive the pardon which was available for his sin. By choosing to kill himself instead of repenting and accepting God’s pardon, Judas died with his sins unremitted, and thus went to hell, where all people who die with unremitted sins go. Peter, on the other hand, repented after denying Jesus, and was converted and restored. The end of both apostles was thus determined by their response after sinning, and not by God. There is therefore no partiality with God when dealing with men’s sins.

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Will Everyone Be Saved Just Because Jesus Christ Died For The Sins Of The Whole World? A Refutal Of The Doctrine Of Universalism

(Unless otherwise stated, all Bible quotations are from the New King James Version).

1 John 2:2 He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world (NIV).

Jesus Christ has paid the price for the sins of the whole world. He died on Calvary to redeem every son and daughter of Adam. However, not every one will be saved from God’s wrath. Some people will end up in hell and the lake of fire, despite the fact that the ransom for their souls had been paid. Why will some people go to hell despite the fact that the penalty for their sins has been paid by some else? Shouldn’t salvation for everyone be automatic, since the price for all our sins has been paid? Is God justified to allow anyone to go to hell? We shall examine the Scriptures and other relevant legal documents, to find answers to these questions.

We’ve shown elaborately, from previous teachings on the blog, that salvation is a free gift of God to mankind, made possible through the atoning sacrifice of his Son Jesus Christ. Anyone can access that gift of salvation by just believing in Jesus’ sacrifice for sin on Calvary, and accepting him as Lord and Saviour. Anyone who believes and confesses Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour will be saved. There are thus two parts to salvation- the provision of the sacrifice needed to appease God, and the acceptance and presentation of that sacrifice back to God. God, even though he’s the offended party, took it upon himself to make a way for rebellious men to be reconciled back to him, by providing the atoning sacrifice for sinful mankind. Compelled by his great love for mankind, God offered his only begotten Son as the sin offering to make a way of escape for men. God did for all men what no man could do for himself or for the race, for no man was/is capable and worthy of offering himself as a propitiatory sacrifice for his sins and those of others. Now, having provided man the needed sacrifice, the least God expects from man is to accept the sacrifice. It is every man’s responsibility to appropriate that sacrifice for himself and present it to God as the ransom for his soul. Anyone who fails to do that is not only rejecting God’s provided sacrifice, he’s also trampling underfoot the blood of the Son of God and insulting the Spirit of Grace that made that atoning sacrifice possible. Such a person has only himself to blame for not accepting God’s provided way of escape from the curse of sin and death, because he failed to accept God’s free gift of grace!

John 3:16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

John 3:17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.

John 3:18 “He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

John 3:19 And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.

John 3:20 For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed.

John 3:21 But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God.”

John 8:21 Then Jesus said to them again, “I am going away, and you will seek Me, and will die in your sin. Where I go you cannot come.”

John 8:22 So the Jews said, “Will He kill Himself, because He says, ‘Where I go you cannot come’?”

John 8:23 And He said to them, “You are from beneath; I am from above. You are of this world; I am not of this world.

John 8:24 Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; for if you do not believe that I am He, you will die in your sins.”

Hebrews 10:28 Anyone who has rejected Moses’ law dies without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses.

Hebrews 10:29 Of how much worse punishment, do you suppose, will he be thought worthy who has trampled the Son of God underfoot, counted the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified a common thing, and insulted the Spirit of grace?

While testing his obedience, God asked Abraham to sacrifice his son Isaac to him. Abraham obeyed God and took Isaac up to offer him as a sacrifice to God. Just as he was about to kill Isaac who was bound on the altar, God spoke from heaven and stopped Abraham from proceeding further, offering Abraham an alternative sacrifice (a ram) to present to him instead. Abraham had the choice to either accept God’s provided alternative, or go ahead with the killing of his son. He made the wise choice of using God’s alternative and sparing his son’s life. That’s exactly the same scenario sinful men have found themselves in. Because we’ve all sinned, we all deserve to die, for the wages of sin is death (Romans 3:23). And while we were staring death in the face, God came down and provided an alternative sacrifice in our stead, the Lamb of God, Jesus Christ. God, in his loving bid to save us from death, asked us to use that sacrificial Lamb he has provided and present it to him instead, as the ransom for our souls. Anyone who fails to accept God’s Lamb, will only have himself to blame. His sins will remain unremitted, because he refused the provided ransom. He will justifiably die in his sins and cannot blame anyone but himself for his fate. Such a person rejected God’s mercy, and should be ready to face God’s wrath!

Genesis 22:1 Now it came to pass after these things that God tested Abraham, and said to him, “Abraham!”
And he said, “Here I am.”

Genesis 22:2 Then He said, “Take now your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you.”

Genesis 22:3 So Abraham rose early in the morning and saddled his donkey, and took two of his young men with him, and Isaac his son; and he split the wood for the burnt offering, and arose and went to the place of which God had told him.

Genesis 22:4 Then on the third day Abraham lifted his eyes and saw the place afar off.

Genesis 22:5 And Abraham said to his young men, “Stay here with the donkey; the lad and I will go yonder and worship, and we will come back to you.”

Genesis 22:6 So Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering and laid it on Isaac his son; and he took the fire in his hand, and a knife, and the two of them went together.

Genesis 22:7 But Isaac spoke to Abraham his father and said, “My father!”
And he said, “Here I am, my son.”
Then he said, “Look, the fire and the wood, but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?”

Genesis 22:8 And Abraham said, “My son, God will provide for Himself the lamb for a burnt offering.” So the two of them went together.

Genesis 22:9 Then they came to the place of which God had told him. And Abraham built an altar there and placed the wood in order; and he bound Isaac his son and laid him on the altar, upon the wood.

Genesis 22:10 And Abraham stretched out his hand and took the knife to slay his son.

Genesis 22:11 But the Angel of the Lord called to him from heaven and said, “Abraham, Abraham!”
So he said, “Here I am.”

Genesis 22:12 And He said, “Do not lay your hand on the lad, or do anything to him; for now I know that you fear God, since you have not withheld your son, your only son, from Me.”

Genesis 22:13 Then Abraham lifted his eyes and looked, and there behind him was a ram caught in a thicket by its horns. So Abraham went and took the ram, and offered it up for a burnt offering instead of his son.

Genesis 22:14 And Abraham called the name of the place, The-Lord-Will-Provide; as it is said to this day, “In the Mount of the Lord it shall be provided.”

John 1:29 The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!

John 1:35 Again, the next day, John stood with two of his disciples.

John 1:36 And looking at Jesus as He walked, he said, “Behold the Lamb of God!”

John 1:37 The two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus.

In th Old Testament, the sinner would approach the brazen altar with the sacrifice for his sins, lay his hands on the sacrifice and confess his sins over the animal, before the innocent substitute is killed. It’s a symbolic act of transferring guilt to the innocent animal and laying the penalty of one’s sins upon it. The transferred sins would make the animal guilty and worthy of death. This is a type of the process of redemption that was played out by Christ, the Lamb of God. We have to lay our hands on him, receive and accept him as our personal sacrifice, for his death to count for us. We must personally appropriate his death for ourselves, in order to benefit from the redemption therein. God has offered the free gift of salvation to all, but we must all individually receive it for ourselves for us to possess it. A gift may be offered by someone, but until it’s accepted and received, it’s not yet the property of the intended target. You must accept and receive a gift for it to become yours. Just as people can reject a gift and thus never enjoy it, one can reject God’s gift of salvation and end up not enjoying it! God wishes all mankind to be saved. He’s offered everyone that chance. But, not all will accept it, and not all will come under the shadow of his wings for protection, though he offers all the chance.

Leviticus 16:1 Now the Lord spoke to Moses after the death of the two sons of Aaron, when they offered profane fire before the Lord, and died;

Leviticus 16:2 and the Lord said to Moses: “Tell Aaron your brother not to come at just any time into the Holy Place inside the veil, before the mercy seat which is on the ark, lest he die; for I will appear in the cloud above the mercy seat.

Leviticus 16:3 “Thus Aaron shall come into the Holy Place: with the blood of a young bull as a sin offering, and of a ram as a burnt offering.

Leviticus 16:4 He shall put the holy linen tunic and the linen trousers on his body; he shall be girded with a linen sash, and with the linen turban he shall be attired. These are holy garments. Therefore he shall wash his body in water, and put them on.

Leviticus 16:5 And he shall take from the congregation of the children of Israel two kids of the goats as a sin offering, and one ram as a burnt offering.

Leviticus 16:7 He shall take the two goats and present them before the Lord at the door of the tabernacle of meeting.

Leviticus 16:8 Then Aaron shall cast lots for the two goats: one lot for the Lord and the other lot for the scapegoat.

Leviticus 16:9 And Aaron shall bring the goat on which the Lord’s lot fell, and offer it as a sin offering.

Leviticus 16:10 But the goat on which the lot fell to be the scapegoat shall be presented alive before the Lord, to make atonement upon it, and to let it go as the scapegoat into the wilderness.

Leviticus 16:20 “And when he has made an end of atoning for the Holy Place, the tabernacle of meeting, and the altar, he shall bring the live goat.

Leviticus 16:21 Aaron shall lay both his hands on the head of the live goat, confess over it all the iniquities of the children of Israel, and all their transgressions, concerning all their sins, putting them on the head of the goat, and shall send it away into the wilderness by the hand of a suitable man.

Leviticus 16:22 The goat shall bear on itself all their iniquities to an uninhabited land; and he shall release the goat in the wilderness.

Luke 13:34 “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, but you were not willing!

Luke 13:35 See! Your house is left to you desolate; and assuredly, I say to you, you shall not see Me until the time comes when you say, ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!’ ”

2 Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.

2 Peter 3:10 But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up.

2 Peter 3:11 Therefore, since all these things will be dissolved, what manner of persons ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness,

2 Peter 3:12 looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be dissolved, being on fire, and the elements will melt with fervent heat?

2 Peter 3:13 Nevertheless we, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells.

2 Peter 3:14 Therefore, beloved, looking forward to these things, be diligent to be found by Him in peace, without spot and blameless;

2 Peter 3:15 and consider that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation—as also our beloved brother Paul, according to the wisdom given to him, has written to you,

2 Peter 3:16 as also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things, in which are some things hard to understand, which untaught and unstable people twist to their own destruction, as they do also the rest of the Scriptures.

2 Peter 3:17 You therefore, beloved, since you know this beforehand, beware lest you also fall from your own steadfastness, being led away with the error of the wicked;

2 Peter 3:18 but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory both now and forever. Amen.

Before the destruction of the ante-diluvian world, God ordered Noah to build an ark to preserve the lives of as many as would enter it for safety. Noah obeyed God and built the ark to God’s specifications. Thereafter, Noah preached to people to get into the ark to avoid being destroyed by the impending flood. But, all (less his immediate family) scorned him and his message. Eventually, the flood came as prophesied, and the entire world, less those in the ark, was wiped out. People who died in the flood didn’t die because of their sins. They didn’t die because there was no way of escape. Those people died simply because they rejected God’s provided way of escape from the catastrophic flood. They spurned God’s salvation and died for their rebellion. Similarly, people will not go to hell because of their sins. People will not go to hell because there is no way of escape from hell. Rather, people who end up in hell will do so because they rejected God’s salvation!

Hebrews 11:7 By faith Noah, being divinely warned of things not yet seen, moved with godly fear, prepared an ark for the saving of his household, by which he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness which is according to faith.

1 Peter 3:18 For Christ also suffered once for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive by the Spirit,

1 Peter 3:19 by whom also He went and preached to the spirits in prison,

1 Peter 3:20 who formerly were disobedient, when once the Divine longsuffering waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was being prepared, in which a few, that is, eight souls, were saved through water.

1 Peter 3:21 There is also an antitype which now saves us—baptism (not the removal of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God), through the resurrection of Jesus Christ,

1 Peter 3:22 who has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God, angels and authorities and powers having been made subject to Him.

Finally, let me leave us with a landmark legal case, culled from http://www.wikipedia.com, that shows a pardon can be rejected, and thus become ineffectual. United States v. Wilson, 32 U.S. (7 Pet.) 150 (1833), was a case in the United States in which the defendant, George Wilson, was convicted of robbing the US Mail in Pennsylvania and sentenced to death [1]. Due to his friends’ influence, Wilson was pardoned by President Andrew Jackson. Wilson, however, refused the pardon. The Supreme Court was thus asked to rule on the case [1]. The decision was that if the prisoner does not accept the pardon, it is not in effect: “A pardon is a deed, to the validity of which delivery is essential, and delivery is not complete without acceptance. It may then be rejected by the person to whom it is tendered; and if it is rejected, we have discovered no power in this court to force it upon him” [2]. Wilson was hanged [3].

And so will everyone burn in the lake of fire (the second death) who dies without accepting God’s pardon for sin as purchased by Jesus Christ on Calvary for the whole of humankind. This is why every one will not be saved (though all can be saved), even though there’s pardon for everyone’s sins. Only those who accept God’s pardon and have their sins remitted will be saved and enjoy everlasting life, while the rest who reject God’s mercy will experience his full wrath in the everlasting lake of fire. May we be wise to accept God’s mercy (while it’s not late) rather than face his judgment, for it’s a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God!

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References:

  1. Bohm, Robert M., Death Quest: An Introduction to the Theory and Practice of Capital Punishment in the United States, p25.
  2. ^http://press -pubs.uchicago.edu/founders/documents

3.^ “11 notable presidential pardons-CNN.com

What Must I Do To Be Saved?

(All Bible quotations, except otherwise stated, are from the New King James Version).

The issue of salvation of the soul and its preparedness for life after death has agitated every descendant of Adam since the fall of man. Instinctively, every man knows he’s on the wrong side of God, and like Adam, tries to hide from the divine presence. Sin is at the heart of man’s apprehension to meet God. God is holy and can’t behold iniquity, whereas every man is born in sin and is full of iniquity. Since Adam, every man, from philosophers to artisans, in confronting the sin problem, has sought to find a satisfactory answer to the question, “what must I do to be saved?”. The question can also be asked in another way: ” How do I prepare to meet God?”. Until we find a satisfactory answer to this all-important question, we’re not ready to live and, even less ready to die. This article seeks to answer this question that’s as old as mankind, from the Apostolic point of view.

The Acts 16:25 But at midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them.

The Acts 16:26 Suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken; and immediately all the doors were opened and everyone’s chains were loosed.

The Acts 16:27 And the keeper of the prison, awaking from sleep and seeing the prison doors open, supposing the prisoners had fled, drew his sword and was about to kill himself.

The Acts 16:28 But Paul called with a loud voice, saying, “Do yourself no harm, for we are all here.”

The Acts 16:29 Then he called for a light, ran in, and fell down trembling before Paul and Silas.

The Acts 16:30 And he brought them out and said, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?”

The Acts 16:31 So they said, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household.”

The Acts 16:32 Then they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all who were in his house.

The Acts 16:33 And he took them the same hour of the night and washed their stripes. And immediately he and all his family were baptized.

The Acts 16:34 Now when he had brought them into his house, he set food before them; and he rejoiced, having believed in God with all his household.

The Philippian jailor was very fortunate to have had the opportunity to ask this life-defining question to the people who could give him the right answers. Having seen the miraculous manifestations of God’s power in the lives of the Apostles, the jailor believed them to be servants of the most high God who could show him the way of salvation. Overwhelmed by the presence of the supernatural in the ministry of Paul and Silas, their jailor fell at their feet and popped the all-important question: “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?”. The answer he received was brief but life-transforming: “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household.” To believe on the Lord Jesus Christ is the only way of salvation, for only Christ paid the ransom for men’s souls on the cross of Calvary. Only Christ’s sacrifice on Calvary was found satisfactory by God as an atonement for men’s sins. Only the blood of Christ can blot away sins and reconcile fallen men back to God. To be saved, one must believe in Christ’s death as sufficient atonement for his sins, and must confess him as Lord and Saviour, repent and be water baptised. Whoever does that genuinely will be saved and become a child of God. It’s that simple! This simplicity of salvation by faith in Christ Jesus is corroborated throughout the New Testament.

Romans 10:5 For Moses writes about the righteousness which is of the law, “The man who does those things shall live by them.”

Romans 10:6 But the righteousness of faith speaks in this way, “Do not say in your heart, ‘Who will ascend into heaven?’” (that is, to bring Christ down from above)

Romans 10:7 or, “‘Who will descend into the abyss?’” (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead).

Romans 10:8 But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith which we preach):

Romans 10:9 that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.

Romans 10:10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

Romans 10:11 For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame.”

Romans 10:12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him.

Romans 10:13 For “whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

How simple God’s provided way of salvation is! How free it is to mankind, though it cost the life of God’s only begotten Son! It doesn’t require us performing tedious tasks or acts of penance (like the labours of Hercules) before we can be saved. It doesn’t require us getting a profound knowledge of theology before we can be made right with God! It doesn’t even require us to change our ways on our own before we become acceptable to God! For, how can we change our ways on our own without God’s help? If we could change our ways on our own before coming to God, then there would have been no need for Christ to die on Calvary in order to redeem us back to God. If we could have mended our ways on our own, we wouldn’t have needed a Saviour! We can’t work our way to salvation. If we needed to do any works of righteousness on our own to be saved, then salvation would not be a free gift. It would be a reward, an earned wage, in that case. But God has made it a free gift! It’s all a work of grace. It’s all dependent on the merits of the works of Christ on Calvary. From A to Z, salvation is of the Lord!

Isaiah 55:1 Come, everyone who thirsts, come to the waters; and he who has no money, come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without price.

Isaiah 55:2 Why do you spend your money for that which is not bread, and your labor for that which does not satisfy? Listen diligently to me, and eat what is good, and delight yourselves in rich food.

Isaiah 55:3 Incline your ear, and come to me; hear, that your soul may live; and I will make with you an everlasting covenant, my steadfast, sure love for David (ESV)

Revelation 22:17 And the Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And let him who hears say, “Come!” And let him who thirsts come. Whoever desires, let him take the water of life freely.

Romans 4:1 What then shall we say that Abraham our father has found according to the flesh?

Romans 4:2 For if Abraham was justified by works, he has something to boast about, but not before God.

Romans 4:3 For what does the Scripture say? “Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.”

Romans 4:4 Now to him who works, the wages are not counted as grace but as debt.

Romans 4:5 But to him who does not work but believes on Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is accounted for righteousness,

Romans 4:6 just as David also describes the blessedness of the man to whom God imputes righteousness apart from works:

Romans 4:7 “Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven,
And whose sins are covered;

Romans 4:8 Blessed is the man to whom the Lord shall not impute sin.”

Ephesians 2:4 But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us,

Ephesians 2:5 even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved),

Ephesians 2:6 and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus,

Ephesians 2:7 that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.

Ephesians 2:8 For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God,

Ephesians 2:9 not of works, lest anyone should boast.

Justification (being made right with God) is thus entirely by faith in Christ Jesus and obedience to his gospel. By placing our faith in his finished works on our behalf at Calvary and by repenting and being baptised in his name, God pardons our sins and imputes righteousness unto us. By accepting that Christ died for our sakes and obeying his command to be baptised in his name, God reckons we died with him too. And when he rose up again the third day, we rose up with him too. And right now, we’re seated with him in heavenly places, far above all principalities and powers. If someone has paid the price for our sins, why should God still hold us accountable, if we identify with our substitute and place faith in him? God will not be righteous if he holds us guilty still, after the ransom for our soul has been paid. But because Jehovah is the righteous judge, he accepts our righteous and perfect sacrifice, and so declares us not guilty. By believing in Christ, we become free from the guilt and penalty of sin! Hallelujah!

Romans 5:1 Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,

Romans 5:2 through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.

Romans 5:6 For when we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly.

Romans 5:7 For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die.

Romans 5:8 But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

Romans 5:9 Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him.

Romans 5:10 For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life.

Romans 5:11 And not only that, but we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation.

Romans 5:12 Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned—

Romans 5:13 (For until the law sin was in the world, but sin is not imputed when there is no law.

Romans 5:14 Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those who had not sinned according to the likeness of the transgression of Adam, who is a type of Him who was to come.

Romans 5:15 But the free gift is not like the offense. For if by the one man’s offense many died, much more the grace of God and the gift by the grace of the one Man, Jesus Christ, abounded to many.

Romans 5:16 And the gift is not like that which came through the one who sinned. For the judgment which came from one offense resulted in condemnation, but the free gift which came from many offenses resulted in justification.

Romans 5:17 For if by the one man’s offense death reigned through the one, much more those who receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.)

Romans 5:18 Therefore, as through one man’s offense judgment came to all men, resulting in condemnation, even so through one Man’s righteous act the free gift came to all men, resulting in justification of life.

Romans 5:19 For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so also by one Man’s obedience many will be made righteous.

Romans 5:20 Moreover the law entered that the offense might abound. But where sin abounded, grace abounded much more,

Romans 5:21 so that as sin reigned in death, even so grace might reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Romans 6:3 Or do you not know that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death?

Romans 6:4 Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.

Romans 6:5 For if we have been united together in the likeness of His death, certainly we also shall be in the likeness of His resurrection,

Romans 6:6 knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin.

Romans 6:7 For he who has died has been freed from sin.

Romans 6:8 Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him,

Romans 6:9 knowing that Christ, having been raised from the dead, dies no more. Death no longer has dominion over Him.

Romans 6:10 For the death that He died, He died to sin once for all; but the life that He lives, He lives to God.

Romans 6:11 Likewise you also, reckon yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

John 3:14 And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up,

John 3:15 that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.

John 3:16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

John 3:17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.

John 3:18 “He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

John 3:35 The Father loves the Son, and has given all things into His hand.

John 3:36 He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.”

John 20:30 And truly Jesus did many other signs in the presence of His disciples, which are not written in this book;

John 20:31 but these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name.

We cannot make peace with God any other way. Salvation can be found in no other way, for there’s no other name under heaven whereby we can be saved. There is no other person to reunite fallen mankind with God other than the only mediator there is between God and men. There is nothing else we can give to ransom our souls. Our silver and gold and the entire riches on earth cannot be given in exchange for our souls. The wages of sin is death, and only a fellow sinless man can act as kinsman redeemer on our behalf. And, in the entire human race from Adam to this moment, only one person has met that qualification of perfect sinlessness required to redeem man. Only the Lord Jesus Christ, immaculately conceived and virgin born, who lived a perfect and sinless life, was found worthy to pay the ransom for our souls by the sacrifice of himself. It’s no other person than God’s only begotten son himself, manifested in human flesh, that was found worthy to vicariously die for Adam’s race and redeem us thereby, having become kinsman to us through the incarnation. At once, we see both the justice and the mercy of God at play. Divine justice demanded that God punish sin severely, but his mercy triumphed over his judgment, by providing the sacrifice to atone for our sins himself. God loved us so much that he sacrificed his only begotten Son to pay the penalty of our rebellion against him! Oh, the length and breadth and height and depth of God’s love! What riches of mercy and grace God has shown to mankind in Christ Jesus! Glory to his name!

The Acts 4:5 And it came to pass, on the next day, that their rulers, elders, and scribes,

The Acts 4:6 as well as Annas the high priest, Caiaphas, John, and Alexander, and as many as were of the family of the high priest, were gathered together at Jerusalem.

The Acts 4:7 And when they had set them in the midst, they asked, “By what power or by what name have you done this?”

The Acts 4:8 Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them, “Rulers of the people and elders of Israel:

The Acts 4:9 If we this day are judged for a good deed done to a helpless man, by what means he has been made well,

The Acts 4:10 let it be known to you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead, by Him this man stands here before you whole.

The Acts 4:11 This is the ‘stone which was rejected by you builders, which has become the chief cornerstone.’

The Acts 4:12 Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”

1 Timothy 2:5 For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus,

1 Timothy 2:6 who gave Himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.

John 14:6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.

Mark 8:34 When He had called the people to Himself, with His disciples also, He said to them, “Whoever desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.

Mark 8:35 For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel’s will save it.

Mark 8:36 For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul?

Mark 8:37 Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?

Mark 8:38 For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him the Son of Man also will be ashamed when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels.”

Psalms 49:7 Truly no man can ransom another, or give to God the price of his life,

Psalms 49:8 for the ransom of their life is costly and can never suffice,

Psalms 49:9 that he should live on forever and never see the pit.

Psalms 49:10 For he sees that even the wise die; the fool and the stupid alike must perish and leave their wealth to others.

Psalms 49:11 Their graves are their homes forever, their dwelling places to all generations, though they called lands by their own names.

Psalms 49:12 Man in his pomp will not remain; he is like the beasts that perish.

Psalms 49:13 This is the path of those who have foolish confidence; yet after them people approve of their boasts. Selah (ESV).

To believe in the gospel of Jesus Christ then means to believe and accept the fact the sinner’s salvation was procured by Christ’s all-sufficient sacrifice of himself at Calvary. Having thus believed, the sinner must repent, confess his sins to God and be baptised in the name of Jesus Christ, as evidence of his faith and submission, for the remission of his sins. He will then receive the gift of the Holy Spirit, as God’s evidence of acceptance of his faith, the Holy Spirit being the seal of God and the earnest of our salvation. That’s how to be saved—when we have faith in Christ’s finished work at Calvary, repent, confess Jesus as Lord and Saviour, get baptised in water in his name and receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.

Matthew 28:18 And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, All power is given to me in heaven and in earth.

Matthew 28:19 Go you therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:

Matthew 28:20 Teaching them to observe all things whatever I have commanded you: and, see, I am with you always, even to the end of the world. Amen (AKJV).

Mark 16:14 Afterward he appeared to the eleven as they sat at meat, and upbraided them with their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they believed not them which had seen him after he was risen.

Mark 16:15 And he said to them, Go you into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

Mark 16:16 He that believes and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believes not shall be damned.

Mark 16:17 And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;

Mark 16:18 They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.

Mark 16:19 So then after the Lord had spoken to them, he was received up into heaven, and sat on the right hand of God.

Mark 16:20 And they went forth, and preached every where, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following. Amen (AKJV).

The Acts 2:37 Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said to Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brothers, what shall we do?

The Acts 2:38 Then Peter said to them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.

The Acts 2:39 For the promise is to you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the LORD our God shall call.

The Acts 2:40 And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation.

The Acts 2:41 Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added to them about three thousand souls (AKJV).

Ephesians 1:13 In whom you also trusted, after that you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that you believed, you were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,

Ephesians 1:14 Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, to the praise of his glory (AKJV).

Ephesians 4:30 And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby you are sealed to the day of redemption (AKJV).

In conclusion, the most important question in life is that of the salvation of the soul. Until we have answered that question satisfactorily, we’re not ready to meet God. Thankfully and mercifully, God has provided a way of salvation for the soul, in the sacrificial death and resurrection of his only begotten Son, Jesus Christ. All we need to do to appropriate God’s salvation is to repent, believe and confess Jesus as our Lord and Saviour and get baptised in water in his name, for the remission of our sins. Then God will give us the gift of the Holy Spirit, who is the seal of our salvation. That’s how we are made new creatures by God, and thus saved from the wrath to come. That’s how to escape from the second death in the lake of fire, which is the deserved punishment for all sinners. That’s what we all must do to be saved!

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Partaking Of The Lord’s Supper Unworthily Has Grave Consequences!

(All Bible quotations, except otherwise stated, are from the American King James Version).

The Lord’s supper or holy communion, was ordained by the Lord Jesus Christ as the means of remembering his death. The elements of the communion—the bread and the wine—represent the body and the blood of the Lord, which were broken and shed, respectively, for the remission of our sins. Each time we take part in the holy communion, we are reminded of Calvary, and the great exchange that took place there. And because we should always keep Calvary and the cross of Christ in view, we are commanded by the Lord to partake of the communion often, for as often we eat the bread and drink the wine of the communion, Calvary is brought near to us.

1 Corinthians 11:23 For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered to you, That the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread:

1 Corinthians 11:24 And when he had given thanks, he broke it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me.

1 Corinthians 11:25 After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do you, as oft as you drink it, in remembrance of me.

1 Corinthians 11:26 For as often as you eat this bread, and drink this cup, you do show the Lord’s death till he come.

As desirable as partaking in the holy communion is, it cannot be eaten anyhow, for eating the communion unworthily carries grave consequences. People can get weak (physically and spiritually), fall sick and even die prematurely, by partaking in the holy communion in an unworthy manner. How can people eat the bread and drink the wine of the Lord’s supper unworthily? How can people eat and drink damnation to themselves at the Lord’s table? We shall examine the Scripture to answer these questions.

1 Corinthians 11:27 Why whoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord.

Paul taught that Christ is the antetype of the Jewish Passover lamb, and that as the Passover feast was eaten with unleavened bread, Christians are to partake of the holy communion with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. Leaven signifies hypocrisy, sin and false doctrines. We are thus to purge ourselves of all known sins as we approach the Lord’s table. We are to examine ourselves carefully before we partake of the Lord’s supper, to acknowledge, confess and forsake all known sins, that we may be unleavened enough to partake of this holy feast. The Lord’s body is holy, which body we are. As we demonstrate our union with the Lord and commune with him in the sacred meal of the church, we must be sober and conscious of the fact that as the Lord is holy, so are we to be, for he demands that we be holy even as he is holy.

1 Corinthians 5:7 Purge out therefore the old leaven, that you may be a new lump, as you are unleavened. For even Christ our passover is sacrificed for us:

1 Corinthians 5:8 Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.

Luke 12:1 In the mean time, when there were gathered together an innumerable multitude of people, so that they stepped one on another, he began to say to his disciples first of all, Beware you of the leaven of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy.

The psalmist summarised this point succinctly in the twenty-fourth psalm, with regards to who can approach the Lord and who can ascend his holy hill. He answered his series of probing questions by outlining the qualities required of those who approach God intimately—clean hands, pure heart, lack of vanity and guile. Only such sanctified people are guaranteed to receive blessings from God, having approached God worthily. The Lord’s supper is the most intimate encounter with the Lord, as the apostle Paul described it as having communion with the Lord. Not approaching it with holy reverence provokes the wrath of God rather than his blessings.

Psalms 24:3 Who shall ascend into the hill of the LORD? or who shall stand in his holy place?

Psalms 24:4 He that has clean hands, and a pure heart; who has not lifted up his soul to vanity, nor sworn deceitfully.

Psalms 24:5 He shall receive the blessing from the LORD, and righteousness from the God of his salvation.

1 Corinthians 10:15 I speak as to wise men; judge you what I say.

1 Corinthians 10:16 The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ?

1 Corinthians 10:17 For we being many are one bread, and one body: for we are all partakers of that one bread.

1 Corinthians 10:18 Behold Israel after the flesh: are not they which eat of the sacrifices partakers of the altar?

1 Corinthians 10:19 What say I then? that the idol is any thing, or that which is offered in sacrifice to idols is any thing?

1 Corinthians 10:20 But I say, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice, they sacrifice to devils, and not to God: and I would not that you should have fellowship with devils.

1 Corinthians 10:21 You cannot drink the cup of the Lord, and the cup of devils: you cannot be partakers of the Lord’s table, and of the table of devils.

1 Corinthians 10:22 Do we provoke the Lord to jealousy? are we stronger than he?

1 Corinthians 10:23 All things are lawful for me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but all things edify not.

1 Peter 1:15 But as he which has called you is holy, so be you holy in all manner of conversation;

1 Peter 1:16 Because it is written, Be you holy; for I am holy.

The warning is clear in Paul’s letter to the Corinthians—we should examine ourselves carefully before we partake in the holy communion. We cannot eat the bread and drink the wine of the communion with hidden, unconfessed sin in our lives. For, if we don’t judge ourselves, God will judge us! He listed the judgement of God that befalls those who partake of the Lord’s supper unworthily to include becoming weak (physically and spiritually), falling sick and dying prematurely! Approaching the communion table is thus not a thing to joke with! We can either receive blessings at the communion table or we can receive judgement and damnation, depending on whether we approach the Lord’s table worthily or not.

1 Corinthians 11:27 Why whoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord.

1 Corinthians 11:28 But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup.

1 Corinthians 11:29 For he that eats and drinks unworthily, eats and drinks damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord’s body.

1 Corinthians 11:30 For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep.

1 Corinthians 11:31 For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged.

1 Corinthians 11:32 But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world.

In conclusion, the Lord’s supper, as the sacred communal meal of the church, should be approached with holy fear and reverence, as partaking of it unworthily attracts divine punishment. The bread and the wine represent the body and blood Christ, which is holy. Therefore, to partake of that holy body of the Lord, which the elements of the Lord’s supper represent, we must come with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. Every known sin in our lives must be confessed and forsaken as we approach the Lord’s table, for that’s how to partake of the communion in a worthy way that will attract God’s blessings. We must therefore properly examine ourselves before we come to the Lord’s table, so that we do not eat and drink damnation to ourselves.

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Are The Elements Of The Lord’s Supper The Literal Body And Blood Of Christ?

(All Bible quotations, except otherwise stated, are from the American King James Version).

The Lord’s supper is the sacred communion meal of the church. It’s during this holy feast that believers truly partake at the Lord’s table, uniting with Christ in a special way. The elements of the holy communion—the bread and the wine—are given various interpretations by different Christian denominations. Some believe the elements are actually the real body and blood of Christ, and partaking of them means literally eating Christ’s flesh and literally drinking his blood. Other groups of Christians believe the elements only represent the body and blood of Christ, and eating and drinking them is only symbolic, serving to remind us of the death of Christ as the ransom for our soul, and our faith in his death as the basis of our salvation and eternal life. What’s the position of Scripture on this matter? How are we to regard the elements of the holy communion? We shall turn to Scripture to answer these question.

The position of those who insist the elements of the holy communion are literally the flesh and blood of Christ derives from a literal understanding of Jesus’ teaching about himself being the bread of life. In that great discourse in John’s Gospel, the Lord taught that, as the bread of life which came down from heaven, except people ate of his flesh and drank of his blood, there would be no life in them. He taught that his flesh was meat indeed and his blood was drink indeed.

John 6:51 I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.

John 6:52 The Jews therefore strove among themselves, saying, How can this man give us his flesh to eat?

John 6:53 Then Jesus said to them, Truly, truly, I say to you, Except you eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, you have no life in you.

John 6:54 Whoever eats my flesh, and drinks my blood, has eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day.

John 6:55 For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed.

Taking the above verses of Scripture literally, one would come to the conclusion that, except we cannibalise the body and blood of Jesus Christ, we cannot have eternal life! We would have to believe that Christ was actually inviting people to kill and eat him in order to have eternal life! That would mean that, since nobody literally ate of Christ’s flesh and literally drank his blood when he died (at least his corpse was laid in a tomb and resurrected later, after his blood was poured out on Calvary), none of the disciples who followed Christ had eternal life, and none of us living now can ever have eternal life, simply because we don’t have access to the flesh and blood of Christ, to eat and to drink from!

However, we know from the testimony of Scripture that the disciples of Christ who believed in him to the end had eternal life. Also, people who did not live during Christ’s ministry, and so didn’t have access to his flesh and blood, have experienced and are still experiencing eternal life through him. Thus, Christ could not have meant the literal cannibalisation of his flesh and blood as the means of securing eternal life.

The reason why Christ couldn’t have offered his literal blood to people to drink is because Scripture forbids the eating of blood! God warns people against eating blood because life is in the blood, and anyone who drinks blood is to be cut off from among God’s people. Therefore, Jesus, who never broke any word of God, nor ever encouraged people to do so, couldn’t have been inviting people to violate such a clear-cut scriptural injunction!

Genesis 9:1 And God blessed Noah and his sons, and said to them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth.

Genesis 9:2 And the fear of you and the dread of you shall be on every beast of the earth, and on every fowl of the air, on all that moves on the earth, and on all the fishes of the sea; into your hand are they delivered.

Genesis 9:3 Every moving thing that lives shall be meat for you; even as the green herb have I given you all things.

Genesis 9:4 But flesh with the life thereof, which is the blood thereof, shall you not eat.

Genesis 9:5 And surely your blood of your lives will I require; at the hand of every beast will I require it, and at the hand of man; at the hand of every man’s brother will I require the life of man.

Genesis 9:6 Whoever sheds man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man.

Leviticus 17:10 And whatever man there be of the house of Israel, or of the strangers that sojourn among you, that eats any manner of blood; I will even set my face against that soul that eats blood, and will cut him off from among his people.

Leviticus 17:11 For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you on the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that makes an atonement for the soul.

Leviticus 17:12 Therefore I said to the children of Israel, No soul of you shall eat blood, neither shall any stranger that sojournes among you eat blood.

Leviticus 17:13 And whatever man there be of the children of Israel, or of the strangers that sojourn among you, which hunts and catches any beast or fowl that may be eaten; he shall even pour out the blood thereof, and cover it with dust.

Leviticus 17:14 For it is the life of all flesh; the blood of it is for the life thereof: therefore I said to the children of Israel, You shall eat the blood of no manner of flesh: for the life of all flesh is the blood thereof: whoever eats it shall be cut off.

The Acts 15:28 For it seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us, to lay on you no greater burden than these necessary things;

The Acts 15:29 That you abstain from meats offered to idols, and from blood, and from things strangled, and from fornication: from which if you keep yourselves, you shall do well. Fare you well.

The Lord must have spoken figuratively then, since his speech on that occasion cannot be applied literally. If a Scripture cannot be applied literally, then it must be taken figuratively. The key to understanding the true meaning of eating the Lord’s flesh and drinking his blood may be found in the 56th and 57th verses of the passage quoted above:

John 6:56 He that eats my flesh, and drinks my blood, dwells in me, and I in him.

John 6:57 As the living Father has sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eats me, even he shall live by me.

From these verses of Scripture, we come to understand that eating the flesh of Christ and drinking his blood simply means dwelling in him and he in us. And how do we dwell in Christ and how does Christ dwell in us? We do that by believing in him as Lord and Saviour and by living by his words. It is by getting connected to Christ by faith and abiding thus in him that we have eternal life. When we believe and place our faith in Christ’s sacrificial and substitutionary death at Calvary, repent accordingly and get baptised in his name, our sins are remitted, and we are then qualified to receive of his Spirit which connects us to him and enables us to abide in him. By that Spirit, we are baptised into Christ’s body. And it is by his Spirit dwelling in us that we know we are his, for if any man does not have the Spirit of Christ, he doesn’t belong to Christ. That’s what the apostles taught.

John 15:4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can you, except you abide in me.

John 15:5 I am the vine, you are the branches: He that stays in me, and I in him, the same brings forth much fruit: for without me you can do nothing.

John 15:6 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.

John 15:7 If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, you shall ask what you will, and it shall be done to you.

John 15:8 Herein is my Father glorified, that you bear much fruit; so shall you be my disciples.

John 15:9 As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you: continue you in my love.

John 15:10 If you keep my commandments, you shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love.

1 John 5:11 And this is the record, that God has given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.

1 John 5:12 He that has the Son has life; and he that has not the Son of God has not life.

1 John 5:13 These things have I written to you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that you may know that you have eternal life, and that you may believe on the name of the Son of God.

1 Corinthians 12:13 For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.

1 John 3:23 And this is his commandment, That we should believe on the name of his Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, as he gave us commandment.

1 John 3:24 And he that keeps his commandments dwells in him, and he in him. And hereby we know that he stays in us, by the Spirit which he has given us.

Romans 8:9 But you are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.

Romans 8:14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.

Let’s now examine the elements of the Lord’s supper, and how the Lord intended for us to view them. We shall revisit the occasion of the inaugural Lord’s Supper to see the Lord’s presentation of the elements.

Matthew 26:26 And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and broke it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body.

Matthew 26:27 And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink you all of it;

Matthew 26:28 For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.

Matthew 26:29 But I say to you, I will not drink from now on of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.

In the passage above is found the origin of the Lord’s supper. It was instituted the night the Lord was betrayed, while he was having the Passover meal with his disciples. Referring to the cup of wine, he said ‘this is my blood’, and regarding the bread, he said ‘this is my body’. If we take those expressions literally, then his blood was shed during the Lord’s supper and his body was broken before he was killed on Calvary! But, we know his blood was not shed, neither was his body broken, until the next day when he was crucified! And, his body and blood were still intact when his disciples ate the bread and drank the cup of wine of the communion! So, by common sense, it’s obvious the Lord wasn’t speaking literally when he spoke of the bread and wine of the communion being his body and his blood. It’s obvious the Lord was speaking metaphorically, using the broken bread and wine to represent his own body and blood which would be sacrificed the next day at Calvary for the remission of the sins of fallen humanity. That then is how the Lord intended for the elements of the communion to be viewed—as symbols representing his body and blood, and not as his literal body and blood. The Lord wants us to remember his death on the cross each time we partake of the communion. It doesn’t mean Christ is killed every time we break the bread of the communion and drink the wine, for that is what it would mean if the bread and wine are to be taken literally as his body and blood. As we behold the bread and wine, we’re to cast out minds back to Calvary and behold the Passover Lamb crucified for us, and his blood shed for the remission of our sins. And as we eat of the bread and drink of the wine, we are to be reminded that it’s only in our union with Christ that we have life eternal, and therefore reminded to abide in him eternally, if we are to continue to have his life in us. The communion is to remind us of the cross of Christ where his body was broken for us and his blood was shed for our sins. We must keep the cross of Christ always before us, and be reminded daily of its redeeming power. That’s what the communion is to help us remember.

1 Corinthians 11:23 For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered to you, That the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread:

1 Corinthians 11:24 And when he had given thanks, he broke it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me.

1 Corinthians 11:25 After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do you, as oft as you drink it, in remembrance of me.

1 Corinthians 11:26 For as often as you eat this bread, and drink this cup, you do show the Lord’s death till he come.

1 Corinthians 11:27 Why whoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord.

1 Corinthians 11:28 But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup.

1 Corinthians 11:29 For he that eats and drinks unworthily, eats and drinks damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord’s body.

1 Corinthians 11:30 For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep.

1 Corinthians 11:31 For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged.

1 Corinthians 11:32 But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world.

Galatians 6:14 But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified to me, and I to the world.

1 Corinthians 2:2 For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.

1 Corinthians 10:16 The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ?

1 Corinthians 10:17 For we being many are one bread, and one body: for we are all partakers of that one bread.

1 Corinthians 10:18 Behold Israel after the flesh: are not they which eat of the sacrifices partakers of the altar?

The error of the papists—that they eat the literal body of Christ and drink his literal blood each time they participate in the communion—is gross then, for not only do they confess to killing Christ afresh each time they sit at the Lord’s table, they also admit to unending cannibalism! Therefore, the doctrine of transubstantiation—whereby the priest claims power to transform the elements of the communion into the literal body and blood of Christ—is nothing but heretical delusion on their part, and incredible folly on the part of those who accept such balderdash. How can people be so gullible as to believe anyone has the power to command Christ to descend from heaven and enter into the bread and wine each time the communion is offered? If this is not blasphemous heresy, then what is?

In conclusion, the elements of the Lord’s supper—the bread and the wine—represent the body and blood of Christ, broken and shed respectively, for the remission of sin. They represent what happened on the cross of Calvary, as the Lord willingly gave his life as a ransom for the redemption of sinful humanity. The literal body of Christ is in heaven right now, seated at the right hand of God in glory, where he continues to intercede for us with his blood. When therefore we partake of the Lord’s supper, we are simply reminding ourselves of the Lord’s death (and subsequent resurrection) as the basis of our salvation and eternal life. As we eat the bread and drink the wine, we acknowledge the great exchange that took place at Calvary. The bread is not the literal body of Christ, neither is the wine his literal blood, for they cannot be, as Christ died only once to redeem us, and cannot therefore suffer death each time we partake of the Lord’s supper, as the heretical doctrine of transubstantiation would have us believe. Those blasphemous magicians who think they can turn bread and wine into the literal body and blood of Christ, so that they can literally eat his flesh and drink his blood in order to have eternal life, are not only greatly deluded, but are also inherently cannibalistic! Those who wish to crucify the Son of God afresh, as many times as they eat bread and drink wine, are enemies of the cross of Christ! The work of Christ on the cross of Calvary 2000 years ago was sufficient ransom for men’s sins, and nothing can be added to it. The communion simply looks back to that completed and finished work as the basis of the believer’s salvation and eternal life. It’s just a symbol and a reminder of that all-sufficient sacrifice and nothing more! The Lord’s supper is a memorial of Calvary, and not a daily literal reenactment of Calvary!

Hebrews 9:24 For Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us:

Hebrews 9:25 Nor yet that he should offer himself often, as the high priest enters into the holy place every year with blood of others;

Hebrews 9:26 For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now once in the end of the world has he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself.

Hebrews 9:27 And as it is appointed to men once to die, but after this the judgment:

Hebrews 9:28 So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and to them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin to salvation.

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