Copyright 1994 - 2018 Bill's Bible Basics
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Published On :
May 31, 1997
Last Updated :
February 7, 2013
Do We Forfeit God's Free Gift Of Salvation When We Sin, We Are Washed Clean By The Blood Of The Lamb, All Have Sinned, Wages Of Sin is Death, Jesus Is Our Father's Ambassador Of Love, Jesus Offered Himself As Vicarious Atonement For Our Sins, Jesus Opened The Way To Eternal Life, Verbally Confess Christ, Jesus Is Our Only Savior And God's Only Recognized Mediator, Faith In Christ Makes Us God's Children Through Spiritual Adoption, Salvation And Eternal Life Is Offered To All Men, We Continue To Sin After Accepting Christ Into Our Lives, False Sinless Saint Doctrine, Blunders By Apostles: Bothered By The Children, Calling Fire Down From Heaven, Peter's Denial Of Jesus, Fleeing From Garden Of Gethsemane We Don't Become Sinless Saints Upon Accepting Jesus Christ, Beware Of Attitude Of Condescension And Self-Righteousness
Some time ago, I was involved in an online discussion which centered around the topic of Eternal Salvation, and whether or not it is a one-time deal, or if it is something which can be lost, and then must be regained, depending upon a person's walk with the Lord. During the course of the discussion, the following remark was made:
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"When you get saved, you are forgiven of your sins. To commit sin would be to have a criminal record, or to mark "return" on your free gift. Its not really a string, but part of the package."
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The person who made this remark appears to be saying that if we sin after we have accepted Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, we essentially forfeit our free Gift. In other words, he seems to be implying that we can lose our Salvation. Well, based on what he states here, and if it is true, we might as well throw in the towel right now, feel sorry for ourselves, and just surrender ourselves to our awful fate. Why? Because I am quite convinced that it is not a matter of "if we sin". As I point out in such articles as "Striving for Perfection: Are You a Sinless Saint?", contrary to the erroneous, popular view, I believe that even after we accept the Lord, every one of us continues to sin. Does this mean that we have forfeited the free Gift of Salvation as this person implies?
In my opinion, this individual's remark is flawed. In fact, it may be misleading. It has long been my belief that once we accept Jesus Christ as our Savior, we receive the free Gift of Eternal Life, and we are forgiven for our sins. We are washed clean of all of our sins -- past, present and future -- by the precious Blood of Jesus Christ, as we can determine by verses such as the following:
"Come now, and let us reason together, saith 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 1:18, KJV
"And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body. And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it; For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins."
Matthew 26:26-28, KJV
"And as they did eat, Jesus took bread, and blessed, and brake it, and gave to them, and said, Take, eat: this is my body. And he took the cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them: and they all drank of it. And he said unto them, This is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many."
Mark 14:22-24, KJV
"And when the hour was come, he sat down, and the twelve apostles with him. And he said unto them, With desire I have desired to eat this passover with you before I suffer: For I say unto you, I will not any more eat thereof, until it be fulfilled in the kingdom of God. And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and said, Take this, and divide it among yourselves: For I say unto you, I will not drink of the fruit of the vine, until the kingdom of God shall come. And he took bread, and gave thanks, and brake it, and gave unto them, saying, This is my body which is given for you: this do in remembrance of me. Likewise also the cup after supper, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood, which is shed for you."
Luke 22:14-20, KJV
"Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;"
Romans 3:25, KJV
"But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ."
Ephesians 2:13, KJV
"Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh;"
Hebrews 10:19-20, KJV
"Wherefore Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered without the gate . . . Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is wellpleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen."
Hebrews 13:12, 20-21, KJV
"Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied."
1 Peter 1:2, KJV
"But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin."
1 John 1:7, KJV
"And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world."
1 John 2:2, KJV
"Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins."
1 John 4:10, KJV
"And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood,"
Revelation 1:5, KJV
"And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb."
Revelation 7:14, KJV
Of course, as all Christians realize, the reason why we must be washed in and covered by the Blood of Jesus Christ in the first place, is because God's Word informs us that we are all hopeless sinners. We have no righteousness of our own. Not only that, but the Scriptures clearly inform us that our own perceived sense of righteousness stinks. Again, consider the following Bible verses which confirm these points:
"But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away."
Isaiah 64:6, KJV
"Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me."
Psalms 51:5, KJV
"If thou, LORD, shouldest mark iniquities, O Lord, who shall stand?"
Psalms 130:3, KJV
"As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one . . . But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference: For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;"
Romans 3:10, 21-23, KJV
"Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:"
Romans 5:12, KJV
"Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)"
Ephesians 2:5, KJV
"Then said Jesus again unto them, I go my way, and ye shall seek me, and shall die in your sins: whither I go, ye cannot come . . . I said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins: for if ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins."
John 8:21, 24, KJV
As some of the previous verses reveal, as a result of our sinful condition, we all have a certain destiny with death. Following are a few additional verses which confirm this very same point:
"Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness? . . . For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord."
Romans 6:16, 23, KJV
"The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law."
1 Corinthians 15:56, KJV
"Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death."
James 1:15, KJV
"If any man see his brother sin a sin which is not unto death, he shall ask, and he shall give him life for them that sin not unto death. There is a sin unto death: I do not say that he shall pray for it."
1 John 5:16, KJV
Thankfully, due to His Divine Foresight and planning, our Heavenly Father put a long-term plan into motion, whereby we can all escape this predicament, if we so choose. This Plan of Salvation was brought into full force when He sent His only begotten Son into this world; not only to serve as an Ambassador of His -- the Father's -- great love, but also to sacrifice Himself, forfeit His own life, and thus become a form of Vicarious Atonement for our sins. By willingly doing this, Jesus opened the way to Eternal Life for us all, and nullified our sentence of death as a result of sin. Consider the following verses:
"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life."
John 3:16, KJV
"Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren."
1 John 3:16, KJV
"That as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord."
Romans 5:21, KJV
"For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death."
Romans 8:2, KJV
For our part, the requirements which we must meet in order to receive this free Gift of Salvation and Eternal Life, are to accept Christ as our Savior, believe in His Resurrection, and confess Him openly before men. Furthermore, we must also recognize Him as the only Mediator who is acceptable to the Father, and the only way to gain Forgiveness, Redemption and Salvation. Consider the following verses which confirm these various points:
"That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation."
Romans 10:9-10, KJV
"Wherefore I give you to understand, that no man speaking by the Spirit of God calleth Jesus accursed: and that no man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost."
1 Corinthians 12:3, KJV
"Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world."
1 John 4:2-3, KJV
"Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me."
John 14:6, KJV
"Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved."
Acts 4:12, KJV
"For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;"
1 Timothy 2:5, KJV
"But now hath he obtained a more excellent ministry, by how much also he is the mediator of a better covenant, which was established upon better promises."
Hebrews 8:6, KJV
"And for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance."
Hebrews 9:15, KJV
"And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than that of Abel."
Hebrews 12:24, KJV
If we do these things, and exercise this faith, the Bible informs us that we undergo a type of naturalization process, and we literally become the adopted Children of God, as well as beloved members of His very own Royal Household, as we can determine by the verses which follow:
"But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:"
John 1:12, KJV
"And Jesus answering said unto them, The children of this world marry, and are given in marriage: But they which shall be accounted worthy to obtain that world, and the resurrection from the dead, neither marry, nor are given in marriage: Neither can they die any more: for they are equal unto the angels; and are the children of God, being the children of the resurrection."
Luke 20:34-36, KJV
"For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: 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."
Romans 8:15-17, KJV
"For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus."
Galatians 3:26, KJV
"Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,"
Ephesians 1:5, KJV
"Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God;"
Ephesians 2:19, KJV
This then is our Father's wonderful Plan of Redemption and Salvation in a nutshell. As I point out in such articles as "Message to the World", "All Are Given a Chance, But . . ." and "Is the Message of Salvation Meant for All Men?", this wonderful, free Gift of Forgiveness, Redemption, Salvation, Eternal Life and Spiritual Adoption is available to everyone everywhere, exactly as we are told in the following verses. That is why we are told that "God so loved the world". In other words, He offered His Son as Atonement for the sins of the entire world. In the verses below, please notice how the writers repeatedly use the words "all" and "all men", so that we are left with no doubts:
"The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe."
John 1:7, KJV
"That all men should honour the Son, even as they honour the Father. He that honoureth not the Son honoureth not the Father which hath sent him."
John 5:23, KJV
"All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out."
John 6:37, KJV
"And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand."
John 10:28-29, KJV
"And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me."
John 12:32, KJV
"And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent: Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead."
Acts 17:30-31, KJV
"Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life."
Romans 5:18, KJV
"Unto me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ; And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ: To the intent that now unto the principalities and powers in heavenly places might be known by the church the manifold wisdom of God, According to the eternal purpose which he purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord:"
Ephesians 3:8-11, KJV
"For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth."
1 Timothy 2:3-4, KJV
"For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time."
1 Timothy 2:5-6, KJV
"For therefore we both labour and suffer reproach, because we trust in the living God, who is the Saviour of all men, specially of those that believe."
1 Timothy 4:10, KJV
"For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men,"
Titus 2:11, KJV
"The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance."
2 Peter 3:9, KJV
Continuing our central discussion, as I mentioned earlier, and as I more amply explain in the aforementioned article "Striving for Perfection: Are You a Sinless Saint?", just because we receive Jesus as our Savior does not mean that we have suddenly attained to some state of sinless perfection, and that we will never commit another wrong in our lives. To even entertain such a possibility is unrealistic in my view. Furthermore, regarding those Christians who do embrace the so-called "Sinless Saint" doctrine, it suggests to me that either they have received erroneous instruction, or else they have a very inflated image of themselves. Either way, I am convinced that they have become deceived.
The Bible is full of examples which demonstrate that knowing and accepting Jesus Christ does not automatically turn us into "Sinless Saints". Consider the Apostles themselves who actually accepted and lived with Jesus. Despite knowing the Savior, it is quite evident that they still continued to sin and made mistakes afterwards, because they were still human, and they were still living in their sinful flesh, just as we are. Consider, for example, what happened when the Apostles became upset because they felt that the young children were bothering Jesus:
"And they brought young children to him, that he should touch them: and his disciples rebuked those that brought them. But when Jesus saw it, he was much displeased, and said unto them, Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God. Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein. And he took them up in his arms, put his hands upon them, and blessed them."
Mark 10:13-16, KJV
Consider also how Jesus reacted when His Disciples wanted to call fire down from heaven in order to destroy a rebellious village, because the people of that village did not receive Jesus into their midst:
"And it came to pass, when the time was come that he should be received up, he stedfastly set his face to go to Jerusalem, And sent messengers before his face: and they went, and entered into a village of the Samaritans, to make ready for him. And they did not receive him, because his face was as though he would go to Jerusalem. And when his disciples James and John saw this, they said, Lord, wilt thou that we command fire to come down from heaven, and consume them, even as Elias did? But he turned, and rebuked them, and said, Ye know not what manner of spirit ye are of. For the Son of man is not come to destroy men's lives, but to save them. And they went to another village."
Luke 9:51-56, KJV
Of course, one of the most notable incidents which reveals blatant failure on the part of the Apostles centers around the Apostle Peter's very own denial of the Lord on the sad night that Jesus was betrayed by Judas Iscariot. Peter was obviously very afraid. He was not ready to die yet. Thus, in order to save his own life, and quite possibly avoid being crucified himself, he denied even knowing the Lord -- three times in fact -- as we see by the following verses:
"Now Peter sat without in the palace: and a damsel came unto him, saying, Thou also wast with Jesus of Galilee. But he denied before them all, saying, I know not what thou sayest. And when he was gone out into the porch, another maid saw him, and said unto them that were there, This fellow was also with Jesus of Nazareth. And again he denied with an oath, I do not know the man. And after a while came unto him they that stood by, and said to Peter, Surely thou also art one of them; for thy speech bewrayeth thee. Then began he to curse and to swear, saying, I know not the man. And immediately the cock crew. And Peter remembered the word of Jesus, which said unto him, Before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice. And he went out, and wept bitterly."
Matthew 26:69-75, KJV
If you are interested, you can learn more about Peter's slow transformation into a power Apostle in the article entitled "Peter: Faith Tried in the Fire". Let us also not forget that even before Peter's denial of the Lord, all of the Apostles had abandoned Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane, exactly as the Lord had said they would do. Consider these verses:
"Then saith Jesus unto them, All ye shall be offended because of me this night: for it is written, I will smite the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock shall be scattered abroad. But after I am risen again, I will go before you into Galilee. Peter answered and said unto him, Though all men shall be offended because of thee, yet will I never be offended. Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, That this night, before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice. Peter said unto him, Though I should die with thee, yet will I not deny thee. Likewise also said all the disciples . . . But all this was done, that the scriptures of the prophets might be fulfilled. Then all the disciples forsook him, and fled."
Matthew 26:31-35, 56, KJV
"And Jesus saith unto them, All ye shall be offended because of me this night: for it is written, I will smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered. But after that I am risen, I will go before you into Galilee. But Peter said unto him, Although all shall be offended, yet will not I. And Jesus saith unto him, Verily I say unto thee, That this day, even in this night, before the cock crow twice, thou shalt deny me thrice. But he spake the more vehemently, If I should die with thee, I will not deny thee in any wise. Likewise also said they all . . . And they all forsook him, and fled."
Mark 14:27-31, 50, KJV
The previous verses are just a few examples which clearly demonstrate that just because we accept Jesus, it does not mean that we suddenly become perfect, or that we are turned into so-called "Sinless Saints", as a number of misguided Christians erroneously suppose. If Jesus' very own Apostles all failed Him, where does that leave us today? Do any of us really believe that we are any better or more spiritual than they were? Are we so lifted up in our own self-righteousness and pride that we have fallen for such a deception?
At the same time, neither does accepting Jesus Christ make us any better than other people, so that we can brag about it, and self-righteously look down upon other people who have not yet accepted Christ. Let me warn you that adopting some kind of holier-than-thou attitude of condescension will not only ruin your Christian witness, but it will likewise drive people away from you, resulting in lost witnessing opportunities. To reiterate, accepting Christ's Atonement simply means that we have been cloaked in and cleansed by the Blood of the Lamb. It means that we have been forgiven, and that our sins have been blotted out; thus enabling us to enter into Eternal Life.
Please go to part two for the continuation of this series.
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