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“That if you shall confess with your mouth the, and shall believe in your heart that God has raised him from the dead, you shall be saved. For with the heart man believes to righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made to salvation” (Romans 10:9-10). I believe that most of us believers in God are not strangers to these verses. Many people think these verses mean that we shall be saved as long as we call on the name of the Lord and believe in the Lord Jesus Christ in our heart, and that salvation is once and for all. Thus, there’s no need to accept any other salvation. Now then, is our such viewpoint compatible with the fact of God’s work? Can we really always be saved once we are saved?
Through seeking, as for “being saved,” I see these verses in the Old Testament, Joel 2:32 says, “that whoever shall call on the name of the LORD shall be delivered…”. Psalm 28:8-9 says, “The LORD is their strength, and he is the saving strength of his anointed. Save your people, and bless your inheritance: feed them also, and lift them up for ever.” From these two passages, we can see that being saved in the Age of Law was based on calling on the name of Jehovah God and abiding by the laws. Combining the work God did in the Age of Law and the result achieved by it, we can understand the real meaning of being saved in that age. As we know, earliest mankind didn’t know what sin was, so they didn’t have a sense of shame or feel reproached when they murdered, fornicated, committed adultery or incest, or worshiped the fake god. Therefore Jehovah God promulgated the Ten Commandments and more than six hundred laws, and the aim was to let earliest mankind know what sin was and what things they did would cause themselves to be loathed and struck down by God. Because Jehovah God issued the laws and commandments, the Israelites understood what He detested and what He loved. So when acting, they would do according to His requirements. These who listened to God’s words and abided by Jehovah’s laws and commandments received God’s protection because of their faith, so that they weren’t burnt by heavenly fire or stoned to death, which means they were saved because they obeyed the laws and commandments Jehovah God issued. If people at that time sinned, they could offer burnt offerings for their sins. In this way, they could be exempted from death because of being forgiven of sins. This is the meaning of being saved in the Age of Law.
Now we understand being saved in the Age of Law is related to God’s work. Let’s think of the work God did in the Age of Grace. Then it is not hard to know the true meaning of “That if you shall confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus, and shall believe in your heart that God has raised him from the dead, you shall be saved.” In the late phase of the Age of the Law, though people knew Jehovah God’s requirements of them, gradually, they could not abide by the laws as their corruption deepened. They substituted the defective offerings for the good ones to deceive God. For example, they offered the blind, lame or secondary cattle and sheep as sacrifices to God. Therefore, people at that time all lived in sin. If this had continued, they would have finally died in their sins for their violation of the laws. Therefore, the Lord Jesus came to perform the redemptive work, and He took on the sins of all in a holy and sinless flesh. We only needed to call on the name of the Lord Jesus and repent to Him, and then we would be forgiven of our sins, and would not be condemned to death for our sins under the law. In this way, the Lord’s believers were saved before the Lord because of His redemption. This is the meaning of being saved in the Age of Grace.
Many people believe when having the Lord Jesus’ sin offering, they are safe, and they can attend the feast with the Lord and share in the good blessings of Him when He returns. Our sins are forgiven, but can we really be saved forever because God has redeemed us once? In fact, our sins are forgiven because of our belief in the Lord Jesus, but it doesn’t mean that we have no sin. Our sinful nature still exists within us and we can often commit sins. We involuntarily live by Satan’s philosophy of life of “Every man for himself and the devil takes the hindmost.” Just for reputation, position and interest, we jostle with each other and embark on a rampage of mutual destruction. We all deceive and scheme against each other. We, living by Satan’s philosophy, become selfish, arrogant, crafty, self-important and conceited, and completely lose our conscience and sense. When confronted with disasters, persecutions or tribulations, we are still able to misunderstand God, complain to God, and even betray God. Having believed in the Lord for years, we can still be directed by our desire to gain blessings. We make deals with God while working and devoting ourselves. We work hard just for a crown and the blessings of heaven. Because we often can’t practice the Lord’s words, much less have a heart of fearing God, we live in sin, extremely distressed and unable to break free from the bondage and restriction of sins. Just likeRomans 7:18-20 says, “for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not. For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do. Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwells in me.” From these words, we can see that we are only forgiven of our sins through our belief in the Lord, but our satanic natures haven’t been resolved. We can still slide back into our old ways involuntarily, living in the vicious circle of committing sin by day and confessing sin by night. In the Bible, it says that the wages of sin is death. So, if we don’t have our sins rooted out, we will be bound in sin forever, and will eventually perish as a result committing sins.
So what kind of people can be saved and enter the kingdom of heaven? Revelation prophesied, “And in their mouth was found no guile: for they are without fault before the throne of God” (Revelation 14:5). From the verse, I knew that those who will finally enter God’s kingdom are without fault, while we are defiled all over, committing sins and then repenting for them every day. How could we possibly enter God’s kingdom or be saved once for all because of the Lord Jesus’ sin offering? God says, “you shall therefore be holy, for I am holy” (Leviticus 11:45). We all know that God’s substance is holiness. How could people who are of sin and of Satan remain in the? We live in sin, defiled and corrupted. Will not we be struck down by God if we meet Him? Therefore, we can see that we cannot be saved once for all through the salvation of the Lord Jesus’ crucifixion. Then, what must we do to be truly saved by God? I remembered that it is written in the Bible, “Who are kept by the power of God through faith to salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.” (1 Peter 1:5). “For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God …” (1 Peter 4:17). “And it shall come to pass, that in all the land, said the LORD, two parts therein shall be cut off and die; but the third shall be left therein. And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried: they shall call on my name, and I will hear them” (Zechariah 13:8-9). From these verses, I understood that only by accepting the salvation revealed in the last days, the work of judgment that the Lord Jesus comes back to do in the last days, and His various kinds of trials and refinement can we, those who have gained the salvation of the cross be truly saved by God. Only if we undergo God’s judgment, trials and refinement can we cast away our sinful nature, break free from Satan’s influence of darkness and the corrupt disposition of selfishness. In this way, we will no longer for the sake of grace or conduct transactions with Him, but will worship Him for the purpose of fulfilling the duty as a created being, and believe in Him for the sake of obtaining truth and life. When our viewpoints, outlook on life and values are compatible with God, and we know God’s righteous disposition, and can truly love and satisfy God, we will achieve a total transformation of disposition to become a new creation. That is to say, until then, we will be the remaining third who have undergone the trails, and will obtain God’s commendation, be saved by God and enter the kingdom of heaven.
Revelation says, “And I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunder, saying, Alleluia: for the Lord God omnipotent reigns. Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honor to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife has made herself ready. And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints” (Revelation 19:6-8). Only by accepting God’s judgment in the last days and obtaining the truth and life from Him, casting off our sins and attaining purification can we become the one who is dressed in “fine linen, clean and white.” Only this kind of people can receive the eternal salvation that God bestows and are qualified to be raptured into His kingdom. Thus it can be seen that the word “salvation is once and for all” is man’s conception and imagination and it is untenable. We are not allowed to enter the kingdom of heaven before undergoing God’s judgment and purification in the last days.
Rapture in the air is not in accordance with Jesus’ words. What is the meaning of rapture? Through fellowship, she understood that the true meaning of rapture is to follow God’s footsteps.
By Zhang Yan Now is the end of the last days when the prophecies of the Lord Jesus’ return have all come true, and we expect to be taken into God’s kingdom and obtain eternal life more eagerly, because the Lord Jesus once said, “He that believes on the Son has everlasting life: and he that believes not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God stays on him” (John 3:36). All these years we have been repenting our sins, preaching the gospel, and bearing fruits, just as the Lord Jesus asked. Thus, we all feel ourselves most approved by God, and that as long as we hold on to the Lord Jesus’ way, we will surely obtain eternal life. Then, is the opinion, after all, in accordance with God’s will? Regarding this question, let’s think back on what the Lord Jesus did in the Age of Grace.At that time, the Lord Jesus incarnate came among us mankind and brought forth the gospel of the kingdom of heaven, saying, “Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand” (Matthew 4:17). From the Lord’s word, we clearly know that what He brought man was the way of confession and repentance. And, in addition to these teachings, He also gave all his mercy and love to His followers, bestowed sufficient grace upon man, healed the sick, cast out demons, raised the dead…, until eventually He was nailed to the cross for redeeming mankind, thus completing the work of redemption. However, in spite of having received forgiveness of sins from the Lord, we man still live in the vicious cycle of committing and confessing sins. We can still express these corrupt dispositions anywhere and anytime, such as greed, selfishness, arrogance, deceit, and so on, so that we commit sins at any time and any place. For instance, when we labor hard for the Lord for years, we feel we have the capital to flaunt ourselves. Meanwhile, we all enjoy being in a lofty position to have others worship us, and always exalt and testify ourselves. Isn’t this the behavior of our arrogant nature? Such substance is exactly the substance of the Pharisees, with which we always talk big, try every means to be exalted and admired by others in sermons. Not only this, we also have treacherous nature. So, in order to secure our fame and status, we usually act one way in public and another in private, and unwittingly tell lies to deceive and blind man on sundry occasions so as to satisfy our personal desires. This proves that our sinful nature is still deeply rooted within us and thus we can still sin and resist God, that is, we have yet to achieve eternal life, since those who have eternal life are someone whose sins have been cleansed. God’s kingdom is holy, and only those who have been purified are worthy to enter His kingdom. How can we, who often sin, be qualified to enter it? The Lord Jesus never said that man could enter the kingdom of heaven with his sinful nature; while we often absurdly think that as long as we labor, sacrifice for the Lord, and keep the Lord’s name at all times, we will enter it and gain eternal life. However, never have we realized that only pursuing to be purified by the Lord and thereby being thoroughly cleansed is the precondition of being approved by the Lord and raptured into the kingdom of heaven. The Lord Jesus said clearly, “Truly, truly, I say to you, Whoever commits sin is the servant of sin. And the servant stays not in the house for ever: but the Son stays ever” (John 8:34-35). He also demanded, “And said, Truly I say to you, Except you be converted, and become as little children, you shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 18:3). The Lord Jesus told us plainly that if we man don’t become as simple and honest as children, and don’t break away from sin to be purified, we won’t be able to enter the kingdom of heaven or obtain eternal life. Then, how will the Lord Jesus’ promise that we will have eternal life be accomplished since we still often commit sins now and have yet to obtain eternal life? When studying the Bible carefully, I read the words of the Lord Jesus, “And if any man hear my words, and believe not, I judge him not: for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world. He that rejects me, and receives not my words, has one that judges him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day” (John 12:47-48). “I have yet many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. However, when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will show you things to come” (John 16:12-13). Also, I saw some man’s words of enlightenment of the Holy Spirit, “So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and to them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin to salvation” (Hebrews 9:28). “Who are kept by the power of God through faith to salvation ready to be revealed in the last time” (1 Peter 1:5). From the above verses, we know that when the Lord Jesus was first incarnated to do the work of redemption, He took on all the sins of man as the sin offering and thereby redeemed man from the law, so that man would be no longer condemned or cursed by the law and had the qualification and opportunity to come before God to get close, pray, confess, and repent to Him. Nevertheless, we man haven’t gotten free from our sinful nature and can’t enter God’s kingdom yet. Therefore, in the last days the Lord Jesus will come again, express more truths, and do a stage of work of thoroughly judging, purifying, and saving man, in order to solve our sinful nature and have our corrupt disposition completely cleansed and transformed, through which we can obtain eternal life. The Lord Jesus once said, “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give to them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand” (John 10:27-28). “He that believes on the Son has everlasting life: and he that believes not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God stays on him” (John 3:36). We all know that what the Lord Jesus did during the Age of Grace was the redemptive work, and what He preached was the way of repentance. The Lord Jesus is Christ, God Himself, and eternal life. It’s just that only when He comes again, which is to say, the Spirit of truth comes, can the way of eternal life be given to man. Those wise virgins who can recognize the Lord’s voice will obtain it, just as the Lord Jesus said, “And I give to them eternal life; and they shall never perish.” Obviously, when He comes again, He will, still in the image of the incarnate Son of man, bestow life upon man through expressing the truth. God says, “He that believes on the Son has everlasting life.” Provided that we merely hold on to the Lord Jesus’ way of repentance yet don’t accept all the truths brought by the returned Lord, then we can’t be called believers in the Son, much less can we obtain eternal life. Instead, only when we believe in the incarnate Son of man in the last days, moreover, accept all the truths expressed by Him, and receive the judgment and purification of these truths to gain life, can our faith accord with the Lord Jesus’ word, and can the meaning of our belief in the Son be complete. Also, this is the only way for us to obtain eternal life and to be raptured into the kingdom of heaven in the last days. All the enlightenment, illumination, and glory be to God! Recommended: To Gain Eternal Life, You Must Know the Source of It Can We Gain the Way of Eternal Life by Believing in Almighty God? Christ of the Last Days Brings the Way of Eternal Life
By Kally Pastors and elders always tell us that all the words in the Bible are God’s words and that the Bible is given by inspiration of God. As the Bible says, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God” (2 Timothy 3:16). So, we have been holding the belief that everything in the Bible is the word of God. But today, when studying the Bible together with Sister Qi, I gained a new knowledge of this notion. When we read several passages of the scriptures, Sister Qi said that there are not only the words of God but also the words of man, of the serpent, of Satan, and of an ass in the Bible. And then she showed the following verses to me. Genesis 3:1: “And he said to the woman, Yes, has God said, You shall not eat of every tree of the garden?” This is what the serpent said to Eve. Job 2:2: “And Satan answered the LORD, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.” This is what Satan said to God. Numbers 22:30: “And the ass said to Balaam, Am not I your ass, on which you have ridden ever since I was your to this day? was I ever wont to do so to you?” This is what an ass said to his master. After reading these verses, I couldn’t help but feel confused in my heart: Right, these are not the words of God but are the words of Satan, of the serpent, and of an ass. Then why did Paul say that all scripture is given by God? Why do the pastors and elders say that everything in the Bible is God’s word? Sister Qi seemed to have read my mind and then shared some knowledge with me. She said, “In fact, in the Bible, we find that God never said that everything in the Bible is His word, nor did the Holy Spirit testify it. The saying ‘All scripture is given by inspiration of God’ only represents Paul’s personal knowledge instead of God’s will. And the belief pastors and elders hold is just based on the words of Paul, not God. We believers in God should view everything according to God’s words.” Hearing this, I nodded my agreement. She then said, “Now we understand that not all the words in the Bible are God’s words. Then, what parts of the Bible are God’s words? I think it’s necessary for us to clarify this issue.” Thereupon, we continued the discussion. Sister Qi went on, “In the Bible, only the words spoken by Jehovah God, the words Jehovah God instructed Moses to say, the words God asked the prophets to convey, the words said by the Lord Jesus, and the prophecies God revealed to John in Revelation are God’s words; apart from these, the biographies of man and letters of apostles are all man’s words. They only represent their personal experiences and knowledge, not God’s words, and moreover cannot be said to be the word of God. “Let’s take a look at all the words that God enlightened the prophets. To differentiate God’s words from prophets’ words, the words of God conveyed by the prophets are always first marked ‘the LORD has spoken’ or ‘thus said the LORD’ according to God’s will. For example, Exodus 16:23: ‘And he said to them, This is that which the LORD has said …’; Ezekiel 5:8: ‘Therefore thus said the Lord GOD …’; and Jeremiah 7:20: ‘Therefore thus said the Lord GOD …’ etc. Aren’t these all facts? Are you able to accept this?” I nodded and answered, “Yes, I can.” Thank the Lord! Today, I have obtained these gains from studying the Bible together with Sister Qi. Well, brothers and sisters in the Lord, have you also understood these? If you want to know more about the mysteries of the Bible, read more on our God and the Bible page, or in the following articles. Does Believing in the Lord Means to Believe in the Bible What Kind of Book Is the Bible? Who Wrote the Bible?
The Lord Jesus did forgive our sins, but we are still living in a circle of sinning and confessing. Then how can we enter the kingdom of heaven without being purified?