3 Passages that Contradict Once Saved Always Saved

3 Passages that Contradict Once Saved Always Saved

Most Christians and Christian denominations believe in the doctrine of Once Saved Always Saved (OSAS) or eternal security. According to that doctrine, if someone is born again, that person can never lose their salvation. However, this doctrine is nowhere to be found in the holy scriptures.

Arguments Against Once Saved Always Saved

In this article, I am going to give you three passages from the bible that completely contradict this doctrine.

 

Terms Designating Born Again Believers

The term “Born Again” is found three (3) times in the New Testament with two (2) coming from the gospel of John in chapter 3 and the other coming from 1 Peter.  In the 3rd chapter of the gospel of John, the Lord Jesus Christ tells Nicodemus that one must be born again in order to enter the Kingdom of heaven:

John 3:3 – Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.

Jesus means that when we are born into this world, we are born out of flesh and are in a fallen state. This fallen state is a result of our disobedience from the beginning in the garden of Eden. The Lord says that unless we are born again from the Spirit, we will remain in that initial state and our end will be one of eternal destruction because we will die in our sins.

This rebirth means that unless we receive the Holy Spirit, we will not be born again into the Spiritual Kingdom of Christ. This rebirth of the Spirit is implied when we hear someone say things like:

  • I was saved back in 2003
  • I was saved while reading the bible in my room 2 months ago
  • He got saved back when he was in high school

After the day of Pentecost, we encounter many different expressions used in the bible to indicate that a person has already gone through this event of spiritual rebirth which is sometimes called conversion. For the sake of this article, I will only mention three (3) which will then be used to prove that we can indeed lose our salvation and that after we are born again.

 

“Receive the Holy Spirit”

Of course, the first term is to “receive the Spirit”. In the book of acts and in the epistles, this is used many times to mean someone who was just born again or experienced conversion. In the book of acts, it can even mean someone who has experienced the baptism in the Holy Spirit (a subject for another article) because the reborn individual would speak in new or other tongues which is a sign of the filling or baptism of the Holy Spirit.

Here are good examples from the new testament:

Day of Pentecost

Acts 2:33 – Therefore being by the right hand of God exalted, and having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Ghost, he hath shed forth this, which ye now see and hear.

People of Samaria receive the Spirit after Peter and John lay hands

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

Peter explains that the household of Cornelius was converted

Acts 10:47 – Can any man forbid water, that these should not be baptized, which have received the Holy Ghost as well as we?

Paul’s inquiry of the 2 followers of John the Baptist)

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

Paul’s letter to the Romans

Romans 8:15 – 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.

Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians

1 Corinthians 2:12 – Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God.

 

“Knowledge of the Lord”

This term which is very ignored and underrated is the “knowledge of the Lord” and in the scriptures, this is implying more than just presumptuous belief in something or just something simply thought up in the brain. Knowing the Lord is a realization of fellowship with the Lord, it is being sure of being IN the Lord and being guided by His Spirit.

Therefore, this term designates someone who is already born again as we can see in the following verses:

The Lord Jesus about His sheep

John 10:14 – I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine.

The Lord Jesus about knowing the Holy Spirit

John 14:17 – Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.

 Salutations of Peter in 2 Peter 1

2 Peter 1:3 – According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue.

The Lord Jesus explains that eternal life is knowing the Father and the Son

John 17:3 – This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.

 Paul says that keeping the law is DUNG compared to KNOWING CHRIST

Philippians 3:8 – More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ

Paul in the letter to the Ephesians

Ephesians 4:13 – until we all attain to the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a mature man, to the measure of the stature which belongs to the fullness of Christ.

In these verses, it is clear that the terms “knowing God”, “knowing Christ” and “knowing the Spirit” are talking about someone who is already passed the stage of being born again. In 2 Peter 1:3, we see that the people who know the Lord have been given things pertaining to godliness.  In Philippians 3, Paul says that being blameless in keeping the law (philippians 3:6) counts as dung relatively to knowing and gaining Christ.

 

“Sanctification”

This word “sanctification” is for those who were not only born again but who are also now being conformed to the image of the Son of God through a continual process of regeneration by the Spirit. The gospel of Christ and the letters Paul speak about this as it is the will of God for us to be sanctified by the Spirit after justification. In other words, justification is precisely when we become born again and then the Spirit of God coming in us will begin to prune and sanctify us so that we become more and more like Jesus Christ.

Let’s look at some verses:

Paul clarifying what being IN CHRIST produces in us

1 Corinthians 1:30 – But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption:.

Paul encourages the Thessalonians to possess their vessels in sanctification

1 Thessalonians 4:4 – That every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honour.

 Paul’s 2nd letter to the Thessalonians

2 Thessalonians 2:13 – But we are bound to give thanks always to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth:

The Lord Jesus explains that eternal life is knowing the Father and the Son

1 Peter 1:2 – 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.

In these verses, Paul and Peter are both talking about sanctification to those who already have been born again. This is clear in 1 Corinthians 1:30 when Paul says that the saints are IN Christ and in other verses like 2 Thessalonians 2:13 and 1 Peter 1:2 where sanctification is a regenerative act of the Spirit working IN believers.

Therefore, sanctification also means one who has already received the Holy Spirit and who is born again.

 

Hebrews 10:26-29

This passage is very strong objection against the false doctrine of Once Saved Always Saved and is contained in chapter 10 of the book of Hebrews. Let’s look at that passage:

Hebrews 10:26-29

26 For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins,

27 But a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries.

28 He that despised Moses’ law died without mercy under two or three witnesses:

29 Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace?

 

The central intended message of the author is to warn from backsliding wilfully into a lifestyle of sin and from the consequences of such a fall in verses 27 and 29. This passage of scripture is packed with terms designating brethren who are already born again and on the way of salvation.

Notice the terms we already discussed above in verse 26. The author mentions sinning willfully after coming to the knowledge of the truth. Jesus Himself is that Truth as He Himself said:

John 14:6 – Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

 

As we have shown previously the term “knowing Christ” is used to design believers in a close fellowship with Christ through the fellowship of the Spirit.

Then the author mentions the consequences of falling away. He says that sinning willfully and deliberately will remove the once for all sacrifice of Christ on the cross and then there will remain no more sacrifice for sins but a certain fearful looking for judgment.

Verse 29 is the pinnacle of the passage and completely goes against the doctrine of OSAS. The author shows that insulting the Spirit of grace is worse than disobeying the Law of Moses of the Old Covenant. By so doing, the backslidden Christian is said to have deliberately chosen to trod under foot the Son of God. How can one do that unless they had access to the Son of God? One cannot put the Son under their feet or insult the Spirit of Grace unless they have Him.

The reborn brother who backslides deliberately is also counting the blood of the covenant by which he (the brother) was sanctified, an unholy thing. Sanctification is a process that is a work of the indwelling of the Holy Spirit as we have also shown.

In light of the whole passage, it is clear that one can lose their salvation after being born again.

 

OSAS Objections

When discussing this passage with OSAS proponents, many try to twist the obvious meaning of this verse. And of course, they have to in order to fit this with their preconceived doctrine of OSAS.

This is a classic example of what people do to twist scriptures. Having ALREADY a preconceived doctrine in their minds and being totally convinced and happy with it, they will go verse by verse and word by word trying to find a way out. This can be done in many different ways but a popular way is to twist the intended meaning of words.

Here are some responses I got:

 

OSAS Objection 1: The “If” of verse 26 is suggestive of an impossible situation

One brother I discussed with told me this passage is merely a suggestion. In other words, it is not something that could really happen. What he uses as an objection is the word “If” of verse 26 “if we sin willfully…”. That “if”, he says, shows that the author is just mentioning something as a side note, an impossibility that does not really happen since it is clear that one cannot lose the Holy Spirit.

 

The answer to this is that this objection doesn’t deserve even one second of debate. Why? Because this renders the whole passage useless. Basically, this means that the author is either straying from his main message and wasting ink or blowing some steam. If we do that to all passages with verses containing “if”, we can cut off any passage of scripture we don’t like. Very convenient, isn’t it?

 

OSAS objection 2: This passage is talking about an unsaved person who “could be” sanctified

Another objection used by the same guy is saying that in verse 29, it should imply “hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he COULD BE sanctified”. So this suggestion is about someone who came to know the truth, was not born again and decided to reject that truth. He was never really born again.

 

First, we have already shown that the term “knowledge of the truth” in verse 26 is indicative that a person is already born again. Jesus says Himself that the Truth sets us free from sin.

John 8:31-32 – Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.

 

In John 8:32, Jesus clearly says that knowing the truth shall make them (Jews who believed in Him) FREE FROM SIN. Nobody can be set free from sin unless they are justified and justification happens when we are converted, born again and forgiven.

Second, the verse says “WAS sanctified” not “could be sanctified”. So this brother was willing to actually play on the tense of the verb in order to ignore the true implications of the author using the word “sanctified”. This is typical when people try to twist scriptures, they play on words to try to make the verses say something that fits with the preconceived doctrine already fixed in their mind. That is what reading INTO the scriptures does, instead of reading OUT of them.

 

OSAS objection 3: This passage is not talking about genuine believers: it is Jesus who is sanctified

Like the previous objection (2), this objection says that the passage in Hebrews 10:26-29 is not really talking about born again believers but about people who came to know the whole truth but rejected it.

Here the commentary from John McArthur for verse 26-29.

Excerpt from “The McArthur Study Bible” (ESV):

“This warning passage deals with the sin of apostasy, an intentional falling away, or defection. Apostates are those who move toward Christ, hear and understand his gospel, and are on the verge of saving belief, but then rebel and turn ”

Then individually for verse 29, this is the commentary of McArthur for the word “Sanctified”:

Sanctified. This refers to Christ, in that he was set apart unto God. It cannot refer to the apostate, because only true believers are sanctified.”

 

This commentary really made me change my mind about John McArthur as a good teacher of the Word. With all due respect to him, it is very surprising how one can go to that extant and apply the word “sanctified” to the Lord Jesus in the context of this passage. Remember, we have to always take things in the context of the passage.

Let’s go over the verses again, this time starting from verse 9:

Hebrews 10:9-29

Then said he, Lo, I come to do thy will, O God. He taketh away the first, that he may establish the second.

10 By the which will we are sanctified (the author is talking jointly about himself and the body of believers) through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.

11 And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins:

12 But this man (Talking about Jesus Christ), after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God;

13 From henceforth expecting till his enemies be made his footstool.

14 For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified. (again the author is saying that Jesus’s offering on the cross brings to perfection the believers who are sanctified)

15 Whereof the Holy Ghost also is a witness to us (here we see “us” again speaking about the body of believers being witnessed to by the Holy Spirit): for after that he had said before,

16 This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord, I will put my laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them;

17 And their sins and iniquities will I remember no more.

18 Now where remission of these is, there is no more offering for sin.

19 Having therefore (always ask why the “therfore” is there for, the author is proceeding to make his point), brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus,

20 By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us (again “us” to mean the body of true believers), through the veil, that is to say, his flesh; (so the veil of the flesh is done away with because of the Holy Spirit providing a new living way)

21 And having an high priest over the house of God;

22 Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water. (washed with the pure water of the Holy Spirit)

23 Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;)

24 And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works:

25 Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.

26 For if we (so these are the same believers from the beginning, the believers who are sanctified in verse 10, living by the Holy Spirit in a new living way in verse 20, and who are washed with pure water in verse 22) sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins,

27 But a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries.

28 He (the author switches and speaks rhetorically of a believer who is a disobedient to the law of Moses) that despised Moses’ law died without mercy under two or three witnesses:

29 Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he (who is that he?) be thought worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace? (It is the person who has trodden under foot Jesus, has counted the blood of the covenant by which he himself was sanctified an unholy thing and has done this against the Spirit of grace).

 

So the “He” in this verse is one used in contrast with the “He” of verse 28, the author is showing that it is worse to fall back from being in the way of salvation than rebelling against the Law of Moses).

You see, anyone with an open mind will never suspect that the word “sanctified” in verse 29 is pertaining to Jesus Christ but to the apostate. That is very clear since the passage beginning in verse is showing the seriousness of disobeying after being subject to the old covenant, then in verse 29, the author wants to show that it is MORE serious to disobey the NEW covenant which is THROUGH the Holy Spirit. This is clear in verse 16 where the author mentions the verses of Jeremiah 31:31 speaking of the new covenant.

With the study of the passage, it is extremely hard for an OSAS proponent to twist their way out of the obvious context which is clearly talking about born again sanctified believers who choose to sin deliberately and fall away.

 

2nd Peter 2:20-22

The second passage is from the second letter of Peter chapter 2.

Let’s look at the passage:

2 PETER 2:20-22

20 For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning.

21 For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them.

22 But it is happened unto them according to the true proverb, The dog is turned to his own vomit again; and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire.

 

The central intended message of this second passage is also of apostasy and falling away from the way of Righteousness.

Here is Verse 20 with some comments:

20 For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world (this is clearly spiritual pollution, how can someone escape the pollutions of the world without being forgiven of their sins, and how can someone be forgiven of their sins if they are not justified and born again?) through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ (so one escapes pollutions and sins through the knowledge of Christ which is a clear indication of someone who is already born again), they are again entangled therein (so after they escape and they become again entangled in sin), and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning (their state in the beginning is of course one of being dead in sin and unsaved and now they are in a worse state).

So it is very evident that a born-again Christian can be again entangled in sin and overcome. As I said, a person cannot escape sin unless they are justified and forgiven. Justification happens when someone comes to saving faith and is converted, that is what being born again does, that is what conversion is: receiving the Spirit.

Moreover, as stated before, the “knowledge of the Lord” is indicative of a born-again Christian. When one is born again and when the Spirit dwells within, only then, one starts knowing the Lord.

Ironically, this “knowing” of the Lord is precisely what is said about the sheep of Jesus in John 10:27-29, which is the passage OSAS proponents use to back up this false doctrine. Let us look at it:

John 10:27-29

27 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:

28 And I give unto them (the sheep who hear and follow Him) eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them (the sheep who hear and follow Him) out of my hand.

29 My Father, which gave them (the sheep who hear and follow Him) me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand.

 

You see, OSAS proponents like to use verses 28 and 29 to say that no man can come and pluck them out of Jesus’ hands. By this, they mean to say that these sheep are born again and they are right.

The sheep are born again BUT the real question is what are the characteristics of the sheep that God keeps? What makes them the sheep? What is it about them that makes them secure in their salvation so that no one can pluck them out of God’s hand? It is the ones who know Him, hear His voice and FOLLOW HIM.

So the point here is to see that in the case of John 10:27-29, OSAS proponents will say this is talking about true believers because God will keep them. But as we saw, this “them” is the ones who KNOW and follow the Lord.

So this is the question:  if “knowing the Lord” in this passage means true sheep, why is the “knowledge of the Lord” in verse 2 Peter 2:20 not mean the same true sheep?

Look at it again:

2 PETER 2:20 – For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning.

Why can’t we accept the simple truth? That a born-again believer CAN INDEED lose their salvation? We cannot start twisting the meaning of terms and words as we please to make them fit with what we like.

 

OSAS Objections

So of course, for OSAS believers, it is obvious that this passage should be talking about false believers. Why? Because otherwise, that would mean that a born-again believer could fall away and they can’t have that.

Again this is what having a preconceived doctrine in our minds does. We read INTO the scriptures instead of reading OUT of them.

 

OSAS objection 1: These false believers were never born again or converted

Here is what John McArthur said in his commentary concerning this passage:

“Verse 2:20 – escaped the defilements of the world. “Defilements” has the idea of putrid or poisonous vapors. Morally, the world gives off a deadly influence. Peter notes that at some point in time, these false teachers and their followers wanted to escape the moral contamination of the world system and sought religion, even Jesus Christ. But these false teachers had never genuinely been converted to Christ. They heard the true gospel and moved toward it, but then rejected the Christ of that gospel. That is apostacy.

 

First, notice how McArthur is trying to downplay the real meaning of the word “defilements”. He is saying that it is an external deadly influence and a moral contamination of the world not really a spiritual desecration of the believer coming from the world. He wants us to think that this is not touching the state of the believer. Why is he doing this? It is because he knows that escaping a bad spiritual state of a believer means real conversion. He can’t have that.

Look at the word “defilements” in koine Greek is:

Original Word: μίασμα, ατος, τό

Transliteration: miasma

Definition: pollution, defilement; a stain.

And this is the definition of the world “defile” in English if you like:

contaminate, taint, pollute, defile mean to make impure or unclean. contaminate implies intrusion of or contact with dirt or foulness from an outside source

So defilements are not outside bad vapors and influences or external moral worldly contamination. Defilements are spiritual tainting, polluting and desecrating the spiritual state of the believer.

Then, of course, he goes on to say that these “had never genuinely been converted to Christ”. Now he has no basis whatsoever in the verses to back up this statement. He is just adding from his own mind to fit his preconceived doctrine of OSAS.

To answer this is very easy as we said before, no one can escape this defiled spiritual state unless they are genuinely converted, born again and forgiven. This is very clear from scriptures. And this is why John McArthur is trying to downplay the word “defilements” to make it seem about a general idea of external influences, vapors and contaminations.

 

OSAS objection 2: knowing the Lord does not mean that a person has believed in their heart

Here is another objection I read on a website for the OSAS doctrine:

“Knowing the Lord and knowing the way of righteousness does not mean that a person has believed in his or her heart. The Greek words used there are all forms of “gnosis,” which means to know. The Greek word for believe is not related to “gnosis”, and it doesn’t appear anywhere in the passage.”

 

Here is a play on words in greek to undermine the implications of the “knowledge of the Lord”.

If Peter didn’t use the word “believe”, that doesn’t mean that the word “know the Lord” is lesser than a saving faith. In fact, the expression “knowing the Lord” is even one of experience of walking with God after already being born again. To discover this we have to look at how the term “knowledge of the Lord” has been used elsewhere and not by comparing with the word “believe” (this we have already done in the previous section of this article).

Also going back to the greek, even though may sound smart to beginners, here does not change a thing.

Let us look again into other verses where “knowing the Lord” is used:

The Lord Jesus about His sheep

John 10:14 – I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine.

 

So here we see that those who know Jesus are HIS SHEEP. Also, not surprisingly, the word “know” in original Greek is the same “gnosis” the OSAS believer downplayed in his argument.

Paul in the letter to the Ephesians

Ephesians 4:13 – until we all attain to the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a mature man, to the measure of the stature which belongs to the fullness of Christ.

 

What about the “knowledge of the Son of God” in Ephesians 4:13? This is the famous passage that is used by five-fold ministers to show that 5 offices are needed to bring the already born again believers into MATURITY. Look at the other terms, “unity of the faith”, “mature man”, “measure of the stature which belongs to the fullness of Christ”.

Does that sound like something lesser than true faith because Paul used the word “knowledge” instead of “belief”!?

 

Galatians 5:1-4

The passage of Galatians 5:1-4 is not frequently used against the doctrine of OSAS but is very effective as I shall show you.

Let’s look at the passage:

Galatians 5:1-4

Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.

Behold, I Paul say unto you, that if ye be circumcised, Christ shall profit you nothing.

For I testify again to every man that is circumcised, that he is a debtor to do the whole law.

Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace.

 

The central intended message of Paul in this passage is that of warning: Paul is telling the Galatians to stand fast in the freedom of Christ and warning them that if they go back to the Law of Moses they will fall away from grace and that the sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the cross will profit them nothing.

Here is the passage with my own comments:

Stand fast (hold on in the true faith) therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free (Christ makes one free from the law when they are under grace, and grace is bestowed upon those who are born again because it is now the Righteousness of God that is imputed in us and works in us and we stand in that grace by FAITH which produces FRUIT), and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.

Behold, I Paul say unto you, that if ye (the brothers in the church of galatians) be circumcised, Christ shall profit you nothing.

For I testify again to every man (or any man from that church) that is circumcised, that he is a debtor to do the whole law (the sacrifice of Christ on the cross is no longer effective because they are going back under the law and have to make it on their own and by their own righteous efforts in keeping the whole law).

Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace (they are fallen from grace which means they no longer can be saved by grace but they have to go back to works of the law and therefore have to keep the whole law).

 

OSAS Objections

Now, as usual, OSAS proponents will say that the Galatians in this passage were not true born-again Christians because if these brothers really received the Spirit and became no longer under grace, that would mean they are no longer saved. They can’t have that so they must find a way out of this.

Let’s go!

 

OSAS objection 1: Severed from Christ does not mean they were saved to begin with

This is an objection I read on a website for the OSAS doctrine:

“Such people who become “severed from Christ” cannot be shown to have had salvation in the first place. True, Paul does say “severed from Christ” but he may have meant the expression simply in the way that certain people have appeared converted and assembled with Christians for a while. In short, Paul could have used the expression “severed from Christ” as well as “fallen from grace” in a socially religious sense, but not in an ontological sense.”

 

This website has used the English Standard Version (ESV), thus the word “severed”. In the KJV Bible, the translation is “Christ is become of no effect unto you”. Either way, one thing is for sure, Christ’s sacrifice is no longer effective and they are no longer under grace.

Now the brother who wrote this obviously has not read the book of Galatians well. The book of Galatians is the only letter that Paul since the first chapter starts admonishing believers as soon as he identifies himself. This is not what he does usually in other letters where he thanks God for the believers, commends and encourages them. He obviously was distraught and unhappy with their behavior and we see him keeping up his admonitions all through the letter. We only have to find one place to show that those he was unhappy with in chapter 5 have already received the Spirit and we have that clearly in chapter 3:

Galatians 3:1-4

O foolish Galatians (Paul is obviously not happy with these brethren who were deceived by those who bewitched them), who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth, crucified among you?

This only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith (So these brethren have already received the Spirit by the hearing of faith)?

Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh (They began in the Spirit and now have gone back to the flesh)?

Have ye suffered so many things in vain (was all the suffering you went through useless)? if it be yet in vain.

 

In other words, we see that the brothers he was unhappy with in chapter 5 are the same ones he was unhappy with in chapter 3. And these have already received the Spirit (Galatians 3:2). There is no reason whatsoever that the ones severed from Christ did not really fall away from Christ and from His Spirit.

 

OSAS objection 2: Fallen from Grace does not mean they lost their salvation

This is an objection I read on another website for the OSAS doctrine:

“Many sincere folks have misinterpreted this Scripture to conclude that a Believer can lose their salvation—this is a false teaching!  “Falling from grace” does NOT mean falling away from God’s salvation and God’s promises.”

 

Now to this brother, these questions are essential:

  • If “falling away from grace” does not mean “falling away from God’s salvation and God’s promises”, then what does “falling away from grace” mean? Why is Paul angry with them?
  • If salvation and God’s promises are not by grace, then what are they by?
  • What do you do with these verses?
    • Acts 15:11 – But we believe that through the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ we shall be saved, even as they.
    • Acts 20:24 – But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God. (The whole gospel of salvation is one of grace)
    • Romans 3:24 – Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus (justified by what? Grace)
    • Romans 5:2 – By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. (It is the grace wherein we stand that allows us to rejoice in hope of the glory of God, that is salvation)
    • Ephesians 2:5 – Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved😉 (If by grace we are saved, then fallen from grace means we are no longer saved)
    • Ephesians 2:8 – For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God
    • Titus 2:11 – For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men
    • 1 Peter 1:10 – Of which salvation the prophets have enquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you

If “Falling from grace” (Galatians 5:4) does not mean losing salvation, OSAS believers have a big task on their hands.

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