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Turning over a New Leaf

 

FORGIVENESS vs. UNCONDITIONAL LOVE
(repentance necessary )

Today, Unconditional Love is being preached from pulpits and Madison Ave. alike. It is the Fantasy of Fantasies, enticing all to come to Utopia, away from one's unrealized dreams.

Let's face it, the American Dream has turned into diminishing home life, weary work weeks, and very little time. What a grand opportunity to tell all of us that we have something!
We have love, love, love...unconditionally, at that.

Well, it's Fool's Gold...a mirage.. the product of wishful-thinking, in the same category with Santa Claus and the Tooth Fairy.
When you attribute "unconditional" to God Almighty, it is Blasphemy, "damnable heresy", says
2 Peter 2: 1..."changing the truth of God into a lie" -- Romans 1:2).


"For it is IMPOSSIBLE for those who were once enlightened, and have
1. tasted of the heavenly gift 
2. and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost,
3. and have tasted the good word of God,
4. and the powers of the world to come
IF THEY SHALL FALL AWAY to renew them again unto repentance;


[ Note well: it will  be “impossible “]


“seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put Him to an open shame."
Hebrews 6:4-6
[Our understanding of “heavenly gift” is to have tasted of the Born Again experience, which we ourselves cannot bestow upon ourselves. It is a ‘heavenly gift’.


It would do us all well to go get a Concordance and look up the little
" if " word.
One will quickly realize that God's Love for us is highly conditional.
Without God's Love, we go to hell for all eternity...separated from God and in everlasting torment.

My, that's an
unpolitically-correct statement . If God’s love was unconditional (no repentance necessary), then hell would not exist .

Yet it is very truth of very truth.
Only one’s best friends will tell you. We don't want you to go to hell, and neither does God.
"God is not willing that ANY should perish, but that ALL should come to repentance" ( 2 Peter 3:9 ).

What God gladly has for us truly repentant sinners is FORGIVENESS.
When we confess our sins to God,
and amend our ways [ change...stop committing willful sin ],
then God receives us graciously into His Love and fellowship.
But if we persist in having our own way , thus disobeying God, then we must
"eat the fruit of our own way" -- Proverbs 1:33.  Please also see Isaiah 53: 6.

"He that despised Moses' law died without mercy under 2 or 3 witnesses:
OF HOW MUCH SORER PUNISHMENT suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy,
WHO HATH TRODDEN UNDERFOOT the Son of God, and hath counted the Blood of the Covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing 
and hath done (willful, habitual disobedience) despite unto the Spirit of grace" Hebrews 10:28,29

Parenthesis, this author

THE PAST

In Ezekiel Chapter 18: 20--32,
there is a section that could well be called "The Past Doesn't Count".
It is dedicated to all rationalizers, deny-ers, and those who are self-deceived .
It can also apply very well for those elders who glide on the slippery back of past credentials. Those white shoes of yesterday are still put on feet of clay today.
We must pray for them, that they stay the course, and do not bend to “itching ears”.  Romans 16:17 and also 2 Timothy 4: 3.
We took some of our spiritual leaders for granted, and some of those leaders took God's love for granted --- something the heresy of Unconditional Love and
OSAS tries to get us all to do. [ OSAS = ‘Once Saved, Always Saved ‘ ].

Here's Ezekiel 18: 20--32.........

"The righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him,
And the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him.

“But if the wicked shall turn from all his sins that he hath committed,
And keep all My statutes, and do that which is lawful and right,
He shall surely live, he shall not die.”   [ in his sins ]
“All his transgressions that he hath committed, they shall not be mentioned unto him:
In his righteousness that he hath done he shall live. “

“Have I any pleasure at all that the wicked should die?  [in his willful sins ]  saith the LORD God:
And not that he should return from his ways, and live ? “

See also
Ezekiel 3:18-21 and Ezekiel 33:1-20

ONCE SAVED, NOT ALWAYS SAVED.....[ explaining “NOSAS” = NO OSAS ]

But when the righteous turneth away from his righteousness, and committeth iniquity,
 and doeth according to all the abominations that the wicked man doeth,
shall he live ?
All The Righteousness That He Hath Done Shall Not Be Mentioned:
In his trespass that he hath trespassed, and in his sin that he hath sinned,
In them shall he die.”

“Yet you say, 'The way of the LORD is not equal' “      [meaning 'not fair']

“Hear now, O house of Israel [can substitute our own name here]
Is not My way equal ?      [ fair ]
Are not your ways unequal ? “   [ unfair ]

“When a righteous man turneth away from his righteousness, and committeth
iniquity, and dieth in them;
For his iniquity that he hath done shall he die.”  [ in his willful sins ]

“Again, when the wicked man turneth away from his wickedness that he hath
committed, and doeth that which is lawful and right,
He shall save his soul alive.
BECAUSE HE CONSIDERETH ,”

  [ accepts personal accountability and CONFESSES his sins to God.  He repents.  He changes his behavior, by the grace of God  ].

“And turneth away from all his transgressions that he hath committed,
He shall surely live, he shall not die. [ in his sins ]”

“ If we confess our sin, God is Faithful and Just to forgive us of our sins.” 1 John 1: 8, 9.

BLESSED ASSURANCE ?

“Yet saith the house of Israel,”    [ adding our own name here ]
'The way of the LORD is not equal'.    [ 'not fair' ]

“O house of Israel”    [ substituting our own name here ]

“Are not My ways equal ?   [ fair ]
Are not your ways unequal?    [ unfair ]
Therefore I will judge you......everyone according to his ways, saith the LORD God.”

Repent, and turn yourselves from all your transgressions;  [ change, by the grace of God ]
So iniquity shall not be your ruin.
Cast away from you all your transgressions, whereby ye have transgressed;”

“And make you a NEW HEART and a NEW SPIRIT : “
[ a new attitude of willingness, Ezekiel 36:26… willing to be willing  ]


“For why will ye die?             [ in your sins ]
For I have no pleasure in the death of him that dieth, [ in his willful sins ] saith the
LORD God:
Wherefore turn yourselves, and live ye." Ezekiel 18: 20--32
(author's parenthesis)

TAKING A PERSONAL INVENTORY

So we see then that if we draw near to God , then He will draw near to us, as it says in James 4: 7, 8. God tells us in this passage that we ought to CONSIDER our ways, meaning we should stop and take a good look at ourselves. If we are going in the wrong direction, then let us TURN and Repent.

Each night we ought take an inventory of our conscience. If we're too sleepy at night, then how about in the late afternoon?...the time that Adam walked with God in the garden ( your own talk-walk with God each day.)
Just share all that is within--both the good and the bad.

We are told to "cast our cares upon Him, for He careth for you"  -- I Peter 5: 7

1 Corinthians 11: 31 tells us, "For if we would judge ourselves,
we should not be judged." ( later, at the Last Judgement )
Wouldn't you rather clear up the record now, than to wait till later ?
Wouldn't you rather change now?...... I would.

"Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD:
Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be white as snow;
Though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.”  [ bright white ]


“If ye be willing and obedient, ye shall eat the good of the land:
But if ye refuse and rebel, ye shall be devoured with the sword: ( war )
For the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it." Isaiah 1: 18—20

[Note the two " ifs " ]
Lord, help me to be willing to be willing.

So we see then that God's love is conditional.  ( upon our sincere repentance, Psalm 51 ).
Then we receive His forgiveness  ( Psalm 32 ).
There are many " ifs " in the Bible.
Then why do all our Christian leaders preach unconditional love?

" For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ,
they are then entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning.
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" 2 Peter 2: 20, 21


INTOLERABLE TOLERANCE
(accepting the unacceptable)


This is what Dr. Carl F. H. Henry had to say about that:

"It offends the modernity in us that the Coming One speaks of people doomed
to remain 'outside the gates' . ( referring to Revelation 22: 14, 15 )

“SO WARPED IS OUR NOTION OF TOLERANCE, THAT WE CAN'T
TOLERATE A GOD SO INTOLERANT OF SIN.”

'How can a loving God be at home in Heaven', we say, 'if some---even the worst sinners----are consigned to hell?'
We want to accommodate the Fall not only here on earth, but even in the dwelling
place of heaven. It offends our permissiveness     [ liberalism ]

'Aren't (we) essentially good?.....Isn't America the hope of the world---the exemplar of social justice and personal compassion?'   [ they say ].

"It offends our modernity
that the kingdom of Heaven has an inside AND AN OUTSIDE....
it offends the Deviousness in us."
--- Dr. Carl F.H. Henry

Yes, we'd all like to think that we are basically good, but Jeremiah 17: 9 tells us that
our hearts are wickedly deceptive. This is a reminder of our craving for self-deception:
"The path to hell is paved with good intentions" [ an old saying ].

In John 9:39, Jesus says,
"For judgment I am come into this world, that they which see not, might see;”
[ that sinners may repent ]
“And that they which see might be made blind". [ the self-righteous stumble ]

Then, the "Who's-Who" of the religious leaders said :  'Are we blind also' ?
“And Jesus said unto them,
"If ye were blind, ye should have no sin: but now you say, 'We see';
Therefore your sin remaineth." John 9:39-41   [self-assured, OSAS]

"Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God.
“If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed (salutation...hi or good-bye).
For he that biddeth him God speed (salutation...hi or good-bye...any conversation at all) is partaker of his evil deeds." 2 John 9-11
(parenthesis, this author)


In other words, since some ministries allowed themselves to be thought of as God's special messengers, their own light blinded them. None of us are special "insiders".
"One (only) is your master (teacher) even Christ ( Messiah Jesus, Yeshua );
And all ye are brethren." Matthew 23: 8 and 10

We are all subject to the guidance of the Holy Spirit. The layman is as responsible for the Truth and enlightenment as anyone, as long as he obeys the Word of God. Our walk has to match our talk.

Jesus said it's all about the fruit of our lives, not our expertise.
We who are Born Again and dying daily [obediently changing, daily repenting ] are God's children.

The Father has no favorites: "Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above,
and cometh down from the Father of lights with Whom is NO VARIABLENESS, neither shadow of turning." James 1:17

No one has a corner on Truth. And thank heavens, no one can decieve you either, unless you let them.
The next time you hear someone say , "unconditional love", just think about that Concordance and the little word " if ".
And then pray for them, because God does have conditional love, and also unconditional forgiveness for genuine repentance.
The real question is:
are we willing to change?


"Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling" Philippians 2:12 ( not taking our position for granted, reading Hebrews 2, 6 and 10.)

We do not work to GET salvation, but we do work to KEEP our Salvation" ( Think Judas )
Working out our salvation is keeping a clear and clean conscience before God...keeping ourselves in loving obedience to His Holy Spirit.
It is an internal work...not external "works".
When we fail to keep our relationship strong and vibrant, we fall into sin...which can become habitual sin...and then WILLFUL habitual sin, and thus we lose our salvation. Plain and simple.
Willfully-sinful people are outside the gates : Revelation 21:8  and  21:27  and  22:15
Salvation does NOT take away Free Will.  Nothing can separate us from our own Free Wiil.

Many preachers teach Romans 8: 35 -- 39 as if we were already glorified in heaven, and that we can never suffer the consequences of sinning again.  But we all know from common sense that we can sin again, and that sin has consequences. And not only that, but we CAN –as Born Again Christians—commit habitually, willful sin, and thus harden our hearts and lose our salvation. Judas once did all 4 of the following:

"For it is
IMPOSSIBLE for those who were once enlightened, and have
1. tasted of the heavenly gift 
2. and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost,
3. and have tasted the good word of God,
4. and the powers of the world to come
IF THEY SHALL FALL AWAY to renew them again unto repentance.
Hebrews 6: 4 – 6

SELF CAN SEPARATE US FROM THE LOVE OF CHRIST


Romans 8: 35 - 39 needs to be seen through the lens of 2 Timothy 3: 1-6. The first and foremost sin we ALL commit is to be” lovers of self”.
It is over-indulgence in SELF that can separate us from God. We are inclined, daily, to put SELF at the top of our priorities. If we over-do this long enough—not repenting-- we put ourselves out of fellowship with God.
If we repent – think PETER—we come back into full fellowship with God.

There are preachers who say that God will hunt us down and bring us back. That evidence is not there, since it does not apply to all.
Some make it back, some do not.
Think ADDICTION.  
Galatians 5: 19-26

“Now the works of the flesh are manifest which are these:
adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness (
causing sinful lust ),  idolatry, witchcraft :
(
rebellion, unlawful spiritual experiences : necromancy, tarot reading, Ouija boards, horoscopes, occult, sorcery, Pharmacia : unlawful drugs;
seeking information apart from God, unbridled curiosity
),

hatred, variance (
willfully quarrelsome, a controlling/dominating spirit; turning doctrinal issues into personal disputations)
 
emulations (
jealousies, rivalry, ambition ) wrath (always angry ), strife (causing arguments ), seditions (undermining authority ),

heresies (
unbiblical teachings or opinions, false teachers ) , envyings, murders, drunkeness, revilings
(
verbal assualts, complaining, murmuring, a contentious attitude)
and such like of which I tell you before as I also have told you in time past that they which do such things
shall not inherit the kingdom of God.”

and
1 Corinthians 6: 9-11…
“Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God ?  Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterators, nor effeminate,
(
a man or boy having feminine characteristics )

Nor abusers of themselves with mankind (
sexual immorality of any kind ). Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers (verbal assult ),
nor extortioners,
( power of influence for greed; forcing pressure to get what you want; blackmailing  etc.)
shall inherit the kingdom of God. “

Our generation has many 12 step programs that prove that  “some must die, that others may live.”
There have been persons in the 12 Step programs that once successfully practiced abstinence  (receiving the benefits thereof) and yet some of those once-successful persons fell away,  and died in their sins. Ezekiel 18: 20-32. ( see above).
Let’s work out our salvation in wholesome fear and trembling, because consequences are real. Because we all have feet of clay until we die.
Because hell lasts a long, long time ( forever ).

“Brethren, be sober and watch well. The devil who is your enemy goes about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour ( destroy ).
But you—grounded in the Faith MUST face him boldly” 1 Peter 5: 8, 9.

______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


OSAS mega-site...Evangelical Outreach;    Dan Corner
http://www.evangelicaloutreach.org/cat1c.htm

Apostasy
http://members.aol.com/joe4jesus/apost.htm

by Graham Pockett
www.anointedlinks.com/once_saved.html

Hebrews 10
www.soundofgrace.com/piper97/4-13-97a.htm

Repentance
www.rapidnet.com/~jbeard/bdm/Introduction/repent.htm

Salvation