“I have said all these things to you to keep you from falling away.” John 16:1
I wonder why the implication is that I have the possibility of falling away. I thought “once saved, always saved?” Why would Jesus say this?
The acronym OSAS is always a good argument starter.
I say it that way because there isn’t much good debate, much less conversation around it. A person is either for it or against it; OSAS is true or it is false. When it comes down to accurate, objective, biblical study the answer is somewhere right down the middle.
There is a substantial, experiential answer though and one that makes total sense; it drops the academic theology and has a simple, straight-forward definition:
Jesus said, “But the one who endures to the end will be saved.” Matt 24:13.
The writer of Hebrews clarified, “And we desire each one of you to show the same earnestness to have the full assurance of hope until the end.” Heb 6:11
Paul told Timothy: “Practice these things, immerse yourself in them, so that all may see your progress. Keep a close watch on yourself and on the teaching. Persist in this…” 1 Tim 4:15-16a
I don’t think arguing/discussing OSAS is profitable. I think that if a persistence on declaring that OSAS is right and the “law” of God, then maybe hope is placed on a slippery concept.
Hope is always on the Cross, where daily I must go. Recognizing His Atonement for the face in the mirror is a daily task, never dependent on one day in my past. “But this I call to mind and therefore I have hope: the steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning…” Lam 3:21-23a
Every morning. Kind of puts pursuing God in perspective, doesn’t it? And shoos the OSAS discussion out to right field…
Father, it is a pleasure and a struggle to keep my feet on the straight and narrow path of righteousness—especially to remember and recognize that path isn’t just about works; it includes the focus of my heart. I do not want to fall away. I do want to pursue you all my days. Keep me, sustain me, Lord, to do just that. AMEN.