Sunday, October 9, 2011

RE: Backsliding is Not a New Testament Message

I hardly ever comment on blog posts, but I did on this one. My guess is it won't get through moderation, so I'll post my comment here.

The post I am responding to is Backsliding is Not a New Testament Message

October 9, 2011 at 4:38 pm
Eileen says:

This post is a great example of “Do as I say, not as I do.” You scold people for letting the Old Testament inform their interpretation of the New Testament (which I was taught is a good idea), and then you let your Calvinist “once saved, always saved” dogma color your interpretation.

If I get your explanation, the Hebrews passages are hypothetical. If that’s true, they also are meaningless and irrelevant, to both people who have been saved and those who have not. Believers can’t fall away, and the unsaved certainly are in no danger of it. That must be why there are so many warning passages in the New Testament.

If not backsliding, what do you call it when a genuine believer gets “caught in trespasses”? And what if backsliding and falling away are two different things? No, you can’t be saved, turn your back on Christ and be saved again. That’s the point of the passages. But if a genuine Christian can’t turn his back on Christ and be lost, what’s the point of all the warning passages? Who can regard as unclean the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified, except someone who has been saved?

Throughout her entire history, the church has had a doctrine of apostasy. Then John Calvin twisted the meaning of perseverance and his followers decided a major historical Christian doctrine was nonsense. Today, we have pulpits declaring the impossibility of apostasy, and a Bible that warns believers there are serious dangers in the land.

Yes, a person is either saved or lost. There is no middle ground. But if it is not possible for a genuine believer to turn his back on Christ and be lost in eternity, then a great many passages in the New Testament make no sense at all.