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The Instigator
Skye2468
Pro (for)
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The Contender
Red_Fox
Con (against)
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A Christian cannot lose salvation

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/6/2018 Category: Religion
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,858 times Debate No: 119351
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (27)
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Skye2468

Pro

This debate is for Christians.

So far I don't think a true saved Christian could lose his or her salvation.

I could be wrong and am willing to change my mind if Con has a good Bible explanation.

Please don't go off topic. This is a debate for Christians, And it's about whether or not a Christian can lose his or her salvation. It's a debate about what the Bible teaches, And not about if the Bible is true or not.
Red_Fox

Con

I am a Christian. I am happy to debate the topic on your terms, But they are rather squishy right now. We have plenty of time, Rounds, And character count to go over a few useful preliminaries. So please include answers to these questions in your Round 2.

=============
1= When you say "the Bible", Do you include the Old Testament? The Apocrypha? The Nicean Creed? The writings of St. Augustine, Etc. ?

=============
2 = We need a more concrete definition than "true saved Christian". One way to define it would be to say that a "true saved Christian" = "a Christian who cannot lose salvation". Please tell me that"s not what you mean. I certainly cannot rebut A = A. I would suggest the following options (take your pick, Or come up with your own):

--- 2a --- Lowest standard --- Someone who has accepted Jesus as their personal Savior through prayer to God (and done nothing else to become saved)

--- 2b --- Highest standard --- Someone who has taken on the image of Christ by totally reforming their beliefs, Actions, Desires, Etc. Into constant alignment with God"s will

--- 2c --- Realistic standard --- Someone who recognizes (but does not excuse) his imperfections and uses God"s Grace to try to come closer to Jesus every year

=============
3 = Since this is your debate, It is customary for you to make the first argument. Please provide at least 1 reason WHY the debate title is true. I am willing to accept your personal rationale as an argument. However, Since you asked me for "good Bible explanations" it seems like you should start your argument with the same.
Debate Round No. 1
Skye2468

Pro

1. The 66 books of the Bible, Old and new testament.

Not anything else. Not even the Apocrypha.

2. There isn't really a way to tell who is a true Christian. Other than by examining their fruits, And testing to see if they are following Jesus commandments.

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, Joy, Peace, Longsuffering, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness, Self-control. Against such there is no law. Galatians 5:22-23

If they are a true Christian they should atleast be growing in these fruits. Also they should be atleast trying their hardest to follow Jesus command.

"A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, So you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, If you love one another. " John 13:34-35

A true saved Christian is someone who has been born again by the Holy Spirit. They have genuinely repented and put their faith in Jesus alone to save them. They are not depending on their works to save them. They do works because they are saved and not because they are trying to be saved. They have realized they have sinned against a Holy God and there is nothing they can do to save them. They need a savior.

There is no way to absolutely tell who exactly is a true Christian. Since it is a heart condition, And so only God knows.

3. I will use one reason for now to start off with.

My sheep hear My voice, And I know them, And they follow Me. John 10:27

In this verse Jesus says "I know them, And they follow me. " Jesus is talking about Christians here. So Jesus knows his followers.

"Not everyone who says to Me, "Lord, Lord, " shall enter the kingdom of heaven, But he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, "Lord, Lord, Have we not prophesied in Your name, Cast out demons in Your name, And done many wonders in Your name? " And then I will declare to them, "I never knew you; depart from Me, You who practice lawlessness! " Mathew 7:21-23

This verse is talking about false converts. People who profess to be Christian, But were actually never born again by the Holy Spirit. Notice how they say stuff like ""Lord, Lord, Have we not prophesied in Your name, Cast out demons in Your name, And done many wonders in Your name? "

They seemed like they thought they could get into heaven by their works. They were not trusting in Jesus alone. Then notice how Jesus says ""I never knew you; depart from Me, You who practice lawlessness! ""

He didn't say that he use to know them, And now he doesn't. John 10:27 says Jesus knows his sheep, Mathew 7:21-23 says to the people who were never actually Christians that he never knew them. This would imply that those people Jesus never knew were never Christians in the first place. Meaning the people who were never Christian couldn't of lost salvation, Because they were never saved in the first place.
Red_Fox

Con

2 ========== Your definition
a TRUE CHRISTIAN has put their faith in Jesus alone (not in their works), Has genuinely repented, Has been born again by the Holy Spirit, And is following Jesus (i. E. , Is growing in the fruits of the Spirit)

I hope I have not mis-characterized your intent. If I have, It was not on purpose and I invite you to correct the definition.

May I please note that there are 4 characteristics in the definition. The first three are written in the past tense. However, Characteristic #4 is written in the present tense. This is where I will squeeze you.

3 ========== Your first argument (with my rebuttal)
You have defined two categories of people:
--- Category A --- John 10:27 defines what I"ll call "TRUE CHRISTIANS who are still saved. " Please note, That the sheep "hear" and "follow" in the present tense.
--- Category B --- Mathew 7:23 defines what you call "false converts" or those who were never saved.

I accept both of these two categories. However, You have in no way established that these are the ONLY TWO categories of people. For all we know, There could be 98 other categories. Thankfully, The purpose of this debate regards only 1 more:
--- Category C --- "TRUE CHRISTIANS who lost salvation"

4 ========== My first argument
"But if a righteous person turns from their righteousness and commits sin and does the same detestable things the wicked person does, Will they live? None of the righteous things that person has done will be remembered. Because of the unfaithfulness they are guilty of and because of the sins they have committed, They will die. . . If a righteous person turns from their righteousness and commits sin, They will die for it; because of the sin they have committed they will die. " Ezekiel 18: 24 & 26

Ezekiel takes aim at Characteristic #4 ("is following"). In context, The entire chapter is teaching that our salvation is not finalized until we die. The first part of the chapter is hopeful: no matter how bad we"ve been or how late in life we finally come to Jesus, If we are a TRUE CHRISTIAN at the end we will be saved. Similarly, Even if we accept Jesus early, Our salvation is not certain until the end. A TRUE CHRISTIAN who "turns from" his righteousness (who "does the same" as the wicked) at the end of his life will lose his salvation.

Furthermore, Ezekiel also takes aim at Characteristic #1 ("faith in Jesus"). He accuses the no-longer-righteous man of "unfaithfulness. " Perhaps we should revise the definition of a TRUE CHRISTIAN to remove faith from the past tense. After all, Faith is a condition of the heart not an event.
Debate Round No. 2
Skye2468

Pro

You summed up the definition of a true Christian very well.

I will accept your rebuttal to the verses, John 10:27 and Mathew 7:23. Because they do not establish they are the only two categories of people.

Your first argument, With my rebuttal and counterargument -

Take note that the book of Ezekial is the Old Testament. Therefore This is not talking about Christians, Since the new covenant has not been made yet.

Now I will use a verse a few chapters later in Ezekiel where God talks about the new covenant.

I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, And you will keep My judgments and do them. Ezekiel 36:26-27

I want to use this verse to help support that a Christian cannot lose salvation. Notice how it says "I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, And you will keep My judgments and do them. "

Gods Spirit inside us causes us to walk in His statutes and keep his judgements and do them, And not us. Therefore we will not turn from Him if He is the one causing us to walk with Him.

My second argument -

For the wages of sin is death, But the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 6:23

For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable. Romans 11:29

Romans 6:23 says "the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord" and a few chapters later in Romans 11:29 it says Gods gifts and calling are irrevocable.

I even looked up the Greek word that is translated to "gift" in both verses. They both use the same Greek word. Which is "charisma. "
Red_Fox

Con

4 ========== My first argument
I will concede that Ezekiel 18 is speaking about Old Testament Jews, But the question it asks (When is salvation granted? ) cannot be dismissed so easily. God is unchanging after all.

5 ========== Your Argument #2 (with my rebuttal)
While salvation is an irrevocable gift from God, There is a WINDOW OF TIME for a TRUE CHRISTIAN to lose his salvation.

Jesus tells the Apostles about the times just before His Return (Matt 24: 9-14): "Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, And you will be hated by all nations because of me. At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other, And many false prophets will appear and deceive many people. Because of the increase of wickedness, The love of most will grow cold, But the one who stands firm to the end will be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, And then the end will come. "

In these verses, "the end" means the bitter end. Not the end of one's prayer or one's life, But the end of sorrows and of time. The End--as in Revelation chapter 20 when God finally sits in Judgment.

Paul agrees that the gift is not given until Judgment (2 Tim. 4: 7-8): "I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, Which the Lord, The righteous Judge, Will award to me on that day--and not only to me, But also to all who have longed for his appearing. "

Obviously, Paul is not dead when he writes this, But he also doesn't actually claim salvation until Jesus gets around to His Judgment.

In Matt 24, We find a relevant new Category of people:
--- Category D --- v. 13 shows that some TRUE CHRISTIANS are required to "stand firm to the end [to] be saved. " Their salvation will never be certain during their lives.

While you are right that salvation is an irrevocable gift from God, It is not given during life (at least not to all). Therefore, There is a WINDOW OF TIME between when some people achieve TRUE CHRISTIAN status and when their salvation is irrevocably gifted.

6 ========== My Argument #2
In this WINDOW OF TIME, Many will reject Jesus and lose their salvation.

Paul concurs that it is possible to lose salvation in this WINDOW OF TIME (1 Cor. 9:24-27): "Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, But only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, But we do it to get a crown that will last forever. Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air. No, I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize. "

I also looked up the Greek word that is translated to "crown" in 1 Cor. And 2 Tim. They both use the same Greek word. Which is "stephanos. " Paul"s crown in 2 Tim 4:8 is not special to him but accessible to all TRUE CHRISTIANS. It is salvation.

But in 1 Cor. 9:27, Paul says that it is possible that he could become disqualified--after becoming a preacher (and TRUE CHRISTIAN). Likewise, Until the race is over (in other words, Our whole lives), We must all stay in "strict training" to avoid disqualification.

Therefore, It is possible to lose salvation in this WINDOW OF TIME.

--- Category C --- In Matt 24:10, Jesus describes many who will "turn away from the faith" before the end. (Notice the similar language to Ezekiel 18's "turn from". ) These are not Category B people, Which you described as folks who trusted in "their works [instead of] Jesus alone. " Jesus is not saying "I never knew you" to these people. He is saying that they had faith in Him (earning TRUE CHRISTIAN status), But then left the faith before the end (losing salvation through unfaithfulness).

Therefore, Many will lose salvation in this WINDOW OF TIME.
Debate Round No. 3
Skye2468

Pro

I want to use two verses in the old testament where I think God is talking about the new covenant. Which is the covenant with Christians. Then I want to ask a few questions.

I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, And you will keep My judgments and do them. Ezekiel 36:26-27

And I will make an everlasting covenant with them, That I will not turn away from doing them good; but I will put My fear in their hearts so that they will not depart from Me. Jeremiah 32:40

Notice in Ezekiel 36:26-27 God says "He will" put His Spirit within us, And "He will cause us" to walk in His statutes.
Then notice in Jeremiah 32:40 God says "He will" make an "everlasting" covenant with them. Then He goes on to say, "He will" put His fear in their hearts so that "they will not depart from Him. "

So my questions are,
How would a Christian turn away from God if Gods Spirit that he puts within us causes us to walk in His statutes?
How is the covenant everlasting if we can break it, Aka lose salvation?
How would we turn away from God if God said we will not depart from Him, Because He has put His fear in our hearts?

God says He puts his Spirit within us and causes us to follow him, So it would seem to me that the new covenant, Aka Christians receive eternal life once He puts His Spirit within us, And gives us a new heart and new spirit within us. This new heart and spirit is, What is called being born again. Which is something that is required for eternal life. John 3:3

So the new covenant starts when we are born again. Meaning that once we are born again we have eternal life, Not after we die.

Therefore, If anyone is in Christ, He is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, All things have become new. 2 Corinthians 5:17

My 2nd argument and your rebuttal, With my rebuttal -

If what I said above is true, And salvation is granted once you are born again. That would mean that you couldn't lose salvation because it is irrevocable according to Romans 11:29, And salvation is granted while still alive.

It is true that Mathew 24:9-14 says, "But he who endures to the end shall be saved. " But, I don't see this as meaning they will be saved after they die. This verse actually goes in harmony with what I said above. The people who stand firm to the end are True Christians, Who have Gods Spirit within them, And Gods Spirit causes them to stand firm to the end.

Mathew 24:9-14 also says, "At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other" Just because they turned away from the faith doesn't mean they were actually saved. These people I would say they fit into the false convert category again. According to this verse.

They went out from us, But they were not of us; for if they had been of us, They would have continued with us; but they went out that they might be made manifest, That none of them were of us. 1 John 2:19

Also take note that 1 John 2:19, Seems to suggest that anyone who leaves the Christian faith was never actually a Christian, Or saved in the first place. So if that's true no one can lose salvation if they were never Christians in the first place.

In 2 Timothy 4:7-8. Some extra context of this verse is that this was Paul's last epistle before his martyrdom. Paul was chained to a Roman soldier when he wrote this epistle. The reason Paul was able to get through everything that he went through is because God gave him the strength. Paul is saying here he has faced all these trials and tribulations and made it through to the end. This verse to me doesn't really talk about when you are granted salvation. It just said he made it through to the end of his human life, And now he will be rewarded eternally. So will everyone else who have longed for his appearing.

I disagree with Category D, Because if all I said above is true that would mean that the reason true Christians stand firm to the end is because of Gods doing and not ours. If they fall away they were never Christians to begin with. I think this fits into perfect harmony with this verse.

For by grace you have been saved through faith, And that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, Not of works, Lest anyone should boast. Ephesians 2:8-9

Our salvation is by grace through faith alone. Not by works. If we was to say that we "must" stand firm to the end to be saved. I would say technically that is wrong, Because now we would have something to boast about. Instead we stand firm to the end because we have been saved. Not to be saved.

I do believe that there is a difference between faith, And saving faith though. Saving faith involves repentence, But this is still not works because faith and repentence are two sides of the same coin. Repentence means to change your mind. So of course if you have truly changed your mind you will start turning from sin and putting your faith, Aka trust in Jesus for salvation. We serve God because we are grateful he has saved us, Not to try and stay saved, Or try and earn salvation. Because we can't earn or stay saved. We cannot hit his perfect standard and we will fall short every time. This is why we need a savior, And need to put all our trust in Him and faith in Him to save us.

Your 2nd argument, With my rebuttal -

The first thing I want to say about 1 Corinthians 9:24-27, Is that I don't think the word prize is referring to salvation, Because if it was that would imply that salvation is a prize to be won. That would contradict Ephesians 2:8-9 where it says "and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, Not of works, Lest anyone should boast. "

So that would leave two different questions. What is the prize he is referring to? Also, What can he be disqualified for? I think more context could help answer these questions.

For though I am free from all men, I have made myself a servant to all, That I might win the more; and to the Jews I became as a Jew, That I might win Jews; to those who are under the law, As under the law, That I might win those who are under the law; to those who are without law, As without law (not being without law toward God, But under law toward Christ), That I might win those who are without law; to the weak I became as weak, That I might win the weak. I have become all things to all men, That I might by all means save some. Now this I do for the gospel"s sake, That I may be partaker of it with you. 1 Corinthians 9:19-23

If Paul was teaching we had to be under strict training to maintain salvation, He would be teaching works salvation, Or teaching that we must keep the law. Instead in the verse above he makes it clear he is not under the law, And he chooses to make himself a servant to all anyway. So that way he is able to reach people, And win them over to Jesus.

It seems to me that the prize Paul is referring to is not the salvation of himself. He sees winning others to Jesus as the prize. He continues to submit, And make himself a servant, And get beat so that way he won't become disqualified to lead them to Jesus.

If Paul was referring to his own salvation possibly being lost. It would also seem to contradict this verse.

All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, And the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out. John 6:37

My 3rd Argument -

just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, That we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, Having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, According to the good pleasure of His will, Ephesians 1:4-5

In Him you also trusted, After you heard the word of truth, The gospel of your salvation; in whom also, Having believed, You were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, Who is the guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, To the praise of His glory. Ephesians 1:13-14

Ephesians 1:4-5 says, "He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world" "that we should be holy and without blame before him in love" having "predestined" us to "adoption" as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, According to the good pleasure of "His Will"

Ephesians 1:13-14 says, After you trusted "Him, " after you hear the word of truth, And having believed. You were "sealed" with the "Holy Spirit of promise" who is the "guarantee of our inheritance" until the "redemption of the purchased possession, " to the praise of "His glory"
Red_Fox

Con

Your third argument is so important that I feel the need to address it first. It seems to underpin all of your claims and rebuttals.

7 ========== Predestined?
What does "predestination" mean to you? How does it interact with free will? How does it interact with the 4 Characteristics of TRUE CHRISTIANS?

I expect that you define predestined = "our will, Faith, Decisions, Actions, Etc. , Have zero influence over our personal salvation because God decided whether or not to save us before He created the world. " Please confirm.

This reading doesn't prove your thesis, Rather it nullifies it. Who cares whether a Christian can "lose" salvation, When he can never "gain" it? Who cares whether a "Christian" can lose salvation, When God never says that all the people he predestined are Christians?

Nevertheless, Even if this is your definition of "predestined" (it is not mine), And even if you dismiss my two questions, Ephesians 1 still DOES NOT SUPPORT your thesis. Paul is speaking about 2 distinct groups of people:

Ephesians 1:4-5 & 11-12 (notice the repeated use of "we"): "For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ. . . In him we were also chosen, Having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will, In order that we, Who were the first to put our hope in Christ, Might be for the praise of his glory. "

Ephesians 1:13-14 (notice the repeated use of "you"): "And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, The gospel of your salvation. When you believed, You were marked in him with a seal, The promised Holy Spirit, Who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God's possession--to the praise of his glory. "

Speaking of his own group first Paul says, We were predestined (vv. 4, 5, 11, 12). Then to the Ephesians, He says: you guys were added later when you believed (v. 13). In other words, The Ephesians were not predestined from before the foundation of the world--they were "included" around 58 AD. Here are the two groups in the normal format:
--- Category E --- v. 11 describes predestined Christians (some surmise it's made up exclusively of Jewish converts, Like the 12 Apostles and Paul).
--- Category F --- v. 13 describes non-predestined Christians. Notice the Ephesians are Gentiles not Jews. These actually do "gain" salvation. In AD 40 they weren't saved (by any definition); in AD 62 they had become TRUE CHRISTIANS.

Therefore, "predestination" only applies to some Christians--not all.

4 ========== Old Testament Sources
All these verses are promises made to the Jews. You will need to provide support to any claims that they are applicable to Gentiles (most Christians today).
--- Category E --- Messianic Jews or Jewish Christians, The ones who have the "everlasting covenant" and who God "predestined" to follow Him.

5 ========== Salvation is an irrevocable gift, But when is it given?
Apparently as a back-up to predestination, You place the timing of salvation at being "born again. " But, John 3:3 says that being born again is required for "seeing the Kingdom of God" (= saved). The common translations of the Greek "ean" are: unless (50%), Except (32%), And without (7%). Born again does not equal seeing, So you have not shown born again = saved. Therefore, Your Round 4 arguments are disproven everywhere you wrote, "if what I said above is true" (3 places).

Your rebuttals of Matt 24:13 and Category D include A = A (which is inadmissible), Your proposed timing of salvation (which John 3:3 disproves), And "faith v. Works. " I'm not sure how faith v. Works applies. I have not advocated for reliance on any works. The enduring that is required is standing firm in faith. The plain reading of Matt 24 is: as opposed to these other guys who TURN FROM THE FAITH, The one who ENDURES IN FAITH TO THE END will get salvation.

Your rebuttal of 2 Tim 4:8 is to say it "doesn't really talk about when you are granted salvation. " How can you say that? Paul says, My salvation "IS IN STORE FOR ME" which Christ "will award to me ON [JUDGMENT] DAY. " That statement is about nothing but timing.

Therefore, Salvation is not irrevocably gifted (to the non-predestined) until The End.

6 ========== Is Disqualification Possible?
I accept your rebuttal of 1 Cor 9:27. It is possible that the crown/prize is "winning others to Jesus" as you suggest.

8 ========== Is Falling possible?
But, I rejoin with the subsequent chapter (too long to quote). 1 Cor 10 contains a number of warnings from Paul to non-predestined Gentiles (probably including both TRUE CHRISTIANS and false converts). First, Paul counsels them to: not set their hearts on evil things, Not be idolaters, Not fornicate, Not test Christ, And not grumble (vv. 6-10). Then he tells them that any time temptations come, God will get them out of trouble (v. 13).

Sounds like Paul could have skipped writing the whole section. Why would Paul have bothered to give counsel to those who "were not of us" (1 John 2:19), And who Jesus "never knew" (Matt 7:23)? Why would Paul need to give any counsel to someone who has already received the "irrevocable [gift]" (Rom 11:29), Who "is a new creation" (2 Cor 5:17), Who Christ "will by no means cast out" (John 6:37), And who God will get out of trouble (1 Cor 10:13)?

The very existence of counsel suggests that it is needed. After becoming TRUE CHRISTIANS, It is possible to fall from salvation. Paul says so himself in verse 12: "if you think you are standing firm, Be careful that you don't fall! " Care is only needed for possible outcomes. If it were impossible, He would have said "don't worry about falling. "

Therefore, Falling is possible.

Your rebuttal of Category C (according to Matt 24:10) is to say they are Category B people. But you don't address my preemptions of this designation: your defining Bible source (Mathew 7:21-23) doesn't apply to these people. Is there another type of false convert that is supported elsewhere in the Bible. Nevertheless, The plain reading of Matt 24 is: some folks will TURN FROM THE REAL FAITH before The End.

Therefore, Falling will happen to some TRUE CHRISTIANS.
Debate Round No. 4
Skye2468

Pro

Predestination -

To tell the truth I don't exactly know what predestined means. I have looked into Calvinism, Arminianism, And Molinism. It's very hard to understand because it seems like the Bible could support all three of these views.

Either way though. Whether God predestined by electing himself. Whether God predestined because he foreknew our faith, Or somehow both at the same time. I don't see any possible flaws in the doctrine called "perseverance of the saints. "

As for free will. That is another subject that is hard to understand. Calvinism seems to be more on the side of Gods sovereignty. Arminianism seems to be more free will, And Molinism kind of fuses both together in a way that they both could be true and work.

The way that I see it though is, I don't find the subject of "how God saves" as important as "what you need to do to receive salvation. " As long as you agree with the essentials of Christianity. The other subjects are more up for a friendly debate, Or talk.

You have an interesting point of view on the Bible it seems. Unlike Calvinism, Arminianism, And Molinism. You sort everyone out into different categories of people, And seem to suggest that God saves people through Jesus in different ways. In other words saying "God doesn't save every Christian in the same way. "

That is an interesting concept to look into, And I will do that eventually when I can get around to it.

Ephesians -

As for Category F where you said "Notice the Ephesians are Gentiles not Jews. These actually do "gain" salvation. " I have a couple questions.

Since I am not a Jew that would make me a Gentile right? Well "even if" the Gentiles were not predestined doesent this part in Ephesians 1:13-14 apply to Gentiles now still?

"When you believed, You were marked in him with a seal, The promised Holy Spirit, Who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God's possession" Doesn't this mean you can't lose salvation?

If this doesn't apply to us today. Well, I want to know your opinion on this. Onetime someone told my grandma she is going to hell, So she got worried that night. So she asked God herself if she is going to hell, Then all of a sudden Ephesians 1:13-14 popped into her head. She said that she didn't know the verse, And so she looked into her Bible and there it was.

Old Testament Sources -

I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, And you will keep My judgments and do them. Ezekiel 36:26-27

And I will make an everlasting covenant with them, That I will not turn away from doing them good; but I will put My fear in their hearts so that they will not depart from Me. Jeremiah 32:40

My understanding of the old testament is that the entire thing is pointing towards Jesus, And the new covenant God is going to make with his people. It doesn't make sense to me that it would only be talking about Jews here. Especially when the Bible teaches things like this.

For the Scripture says, "Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame. " For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, For the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him. Romans 10:11-12

For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, But a new creation. And as many as walk according to this rule, Peace and mercy be upon them, And upon the Israel of God. Galatians 6:15-16

For he is not a Jew who is one outwardly, Nor is circumcision that which is outward in the flesh; but he is a Jew who is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, In the Spirit, Not in the letter; whose praise is not from men but from God. Romans 2:28-29

But it is not that the word of God has taken no effect. For they are not all Israel who are of Israel, Romans 9:6

Whoever believes in Jesus is true Israel. Meaning it is not talking about Jews. It's talking about Christians.

Salvation is an irrevocable gift, But when is it given -

Being born again is when you enter into the new covenant with God, Where God Holy Spirit comes to live inside you, And God begins to change your heart and desires. Like the old testament verse said in Ezekiel 36:26-27.

After John 3:3 Jesus also says.

Jesus answered, "Most assuredly, I say to you, Unless one is born of water and "the Spirit, " he cannot enter the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, And that which is born of the "Spirit is spirit. " John 3:5-6

Water is referring to the flesh birth, And Spirit is referring to being born again by Gods Holy Spirit.

The reason Jesus is saying we need to be born again to see the kingdom of God is because of this.

And you He made alive, Who were dead in trespasses and sins, Ephesians 2:1

When we are born we are spiritually dead. So we need a spiritual rebirth, Because we cannot enter heaven while dead in our trespasses and sins.

John 3:3 doesn't disprove that salvation happens at the moment of being born again. It might not say it, But it doesn't disprove it either. If what I said about the new covenant verses to be true then salvation does happen when born again.

These verses seems to suggest that once we are born again, We are children of God. Are the children of God saved? Because the Bible doesn't teach everyone is a child of God. Only those who are born again are children of God.

But as many as received Him, To them He gave the right to become children of God, To those who believe in His name: who were born, Not of blood, Nor of the will of the flesh, Nor of the will of man, But of God John 1:12-13

among whom also we all once conducted ourselves in the lusts of our flesh, Fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind, And were by nature children of wrath, Just as the others.
But God, Who is rich in mercy, Because of His great love with which He loved us, Even when we were dead in trespasses, Made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), Ephesians 2:3-5

Faith and works -

Sorry about that. I guess I miss understood you. Many who believe you can lose salvation think you must keep the laws, Or do some sort of works to maintain salvation. So I thought that is where you was going.

I still think God Spirit is what keeps us enduring to the end. Not only because of the old testament where it talks about the new covenant, But also a couple of other verses.

And I am sure of this, That "he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion" at the day of Jesus Christ. Philippians 1:6

so that you are not lacking in any gift, As you wait for the revealing of our Lord Jesus Christ, "who will sustain you to the end, " guiltless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is faithful, By whom you were called into the fellowship of his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. 1 Corinthians 1:7-9

My rebuttal of 2 Timothy 4:8 -

It doesn't say "My salvation is in store for me. " It says "there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness"

1 Corinthians 10 -

To me it sounds like 1 Corinthians 10:1-13 is talking more to believers. The reason I think this is because of 10:13. We only have power over sin in Christ. So the fact they have a way of escape causes me to think they are possibly saved. I could be wrong though.

Even if a Christian is saved they can still backslide. Even if one is a new creation they are still in sanctification. They are not perfect, And they need guidance. Which is what the Bible is as well. A guidance book.

As for 1 Corinthians 10:12 it doesn't really say you would lose salvation. It's just says don't fall. Is that talking about salvation, Or backsliding and not being able to be used by God? Because it is possible to fall as a Christian, But not fall as in lose salvation but, Fall as in backslide and slow down your sanctification process.

Remember it was also Paul who wrote these.

being confident of this very thing, That He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ; Philippians 1:6

Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, Nor angels nor principalities nor powers, Nor things present nor things to come, Nor height nor depth, Nor any other created thing, Shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:37-39

Falling away will happen to some true Christians -

I don't interpret "turning from the real faith" means they lost salvation, Because my understanding is they were never actually saved. Never actually born again, Or had saving faith. I don't doubt they had faith, But it wasn't the type of faith that saves. Like I said saving faith involves repentence. If you are not willing to repent you don't have the right kind of faith. You will either fall away showing you were never a true Christian, Or you will be sorted out on judgement day by God. Notice that these people turned away from the faith and then "will betray one another, And will hate one another. " It doesn't sound like they are born again to me. It doesn't sound like they had the love of Jesus Christ in them.

Last argument -

Instead of making another argument I want to talk about something I think is way more important. I know I am debating you right now, But my intentions were never to argue. I just was genuinely curious to what some other Christians thought. I see Christians all the time fighting over subjects like this, And I think it's ridiculous. We are called to be at peace with all people. Not only that we are weakening the Church. We are the body of Christ and we need to act like it. We need to love and respect each other regardless of our different interpretations. Now I understand we need to be in agreement on essentials, But as for a subject like this, We all don't need to cause division. We have had enough church splits. Thank you for talking with me.
Red_Fox

Con

========== Witness ==========
Jesus is the Savior of the world, And the one true path to salvation. Some will complain about the formula for salvation in Section 2. Really the formula looks more like this:
***** SAVED = Grace + what Jesus teaches in the Bible *****

Salvation is not a get-spiritually-rich-quick scheme. I took this debate because too many friends in High School had been taught that they can keep doing the same detestable things as the wicked as long as they "say a prayer in their heart accepting Jesus. " In an age of cynicism and voice-operated devices, That is a failing introduction. It teaches kids that they are done before they have even started.

The goal of my witness is to point our minds and souls to the teachings of the Bible so that we can come to know what Jesus really says. To come to know our part to play in the everlasting covenant. Some say it requires "faith only" or "born again" or "works. " While we all want easy answers in life, We need to spend our lives coming to know Jesus and what He requires of us. The Church ought to be the best place to do this learning.

While the Church waits for the young (in age or in the Word) to come to a true understanding, The worst message of all is to say that they ARE saved, And that they can NEVER LOSE that salvation. It engenders an aborted Christianity. A Christianity of idleness, Conceit, And depression.

1 ========== The Bible
You agreed that evidence had to come from "the 66 books of the Bible. . . Not anything else. "

In your arguments, You keep referring to your interpretation and your understanding. In Rounds 4 and 5 it came out that these are based on Calvinism. "Calvinism" and its so-called doctrine of the "preservation of the saints" are not found in the Bible, So they are not valid evidence in this debate.

You were supposed to use the Bible to support your view, Not use your view to read the Bible.

2 ========== Definitions
At the beginning you agreed that TRUE CHRISTIANS are people who 1) placed their faith in Jesus alone, 2) repented, 3) were born again, And 4) continue to follow Jesus. In other words:
---SAVED = (Grace) + faith + repentance + born again + is following---

As I promised, I brought several Bible references to clarify the "is following" part. You responded by removing "is following" with these two conflicting redefinitions:
---SAVED = (Grace) + born again---
---SAVED = Predestination +/- nothing---

Clearly, We can't have 3 definitions, So the first must stand for this debate.

3 ========== Who's Who
You think that I invented these different groups of people? I didn't say some are predestined but others are added (Eph 1). I didn't say that some will endure to the end and others won"t (Matt 24). I didn't make some into TRUE CHRISTIANS (John 10), Others into fake Christians (Matt 7), And a few into antichrists (1 John 2). The Bible says these things, Not me.

5 ========== Timing of gift of Salvation
The list of scriptures we've reviewed with a PAST gifting of salvation:
--Eph 2:5-8-- "you HAVE BEEN saved", But. . .

Right after saying that the Ephesians HAD BEEN made alive and saved, Paul says, "And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus" (Eph 2:6). Unless you are willing to say that the Ephesians HAD BEEN seated with Christ in Heaven, There is something rhetorical in Paul"s use of the past tense.

The list of scriptures we've reviewed with a FUTURE gifting of salvation:
--Matt 24:13-- "the one who stands firm to the end WILL be saved"
--2 Tim 4:8-- Paul's crown is LAID UP until Jesus awards him
--John 3:3-- "see the Kingdom" AFTER being born again
--John 3:5-- "enter the Kingdom" AFTER being born again
--John 6:37-- who "the Father gives me" WILL come to Jesus
--Eph 1:14-- Holy Spirit "is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance" UNTIL actual redemption
--John 1:12-- "the right to BECOME children of God"
--Phil 1:6-- Jesus WILL bring His "good work. . . To completion"
--1 Cor 1:8-- kept firm "so that you WILL be blameless" when Jesus returns

To which I add one final "good Bible explanation" for a FUTURE gifting of salvation:
For the whole chapter of Matt 25, Jesus teaches that salvation comes to TRUE CHRISTIANS when He comes in glory. The 5 wise Virgins did not enter the feast until the Bridegroom arrived (v. 10). The 3 men with bags of gold did not settle their accounts until the Master returned (v. 19). The sheep and the goats were not separated until the Son of Man came in glory (v. 31).

8 ========== Falling
Paul tells the Corinthians to "be careful that you don't fall! " You claim this fall means a Christian can backslide. "Backslide" is not found anywhere in the New Testament. In the Old Testament, It comes from the Hebrew term "shub, " which means "to turn back" (like when it is used in Ezekiel 18:24 & 26). Peter adds (2 Pet 3:10 & 17): "the day of the Lord will come like a thief. . . Be on your guard so that you may not. . . Fall from your secure position. "

Ezekiel, Paul, And Peter agree that it is possible to fall. The clear reading of these three inspired men is that after becoming a TRUE CHRISTIAN, Unfaithfulness can lead to losing "your secure position" before salvation is gifted. Further, Jesus adds that this turning away from faith will happen to some before salvation is gifted in The End (Matt 24:10).

========== Conclusion ==========
2. When we exercise faith in Christ, Repent, Are born again, And continue following Jesus, We become TRUE CHRISTIANS.

8a. We are warned that we must stand firm, Endure, And continue following Jesus.

8b. If we stop following Jesus and turn away from our faith (or backslide), We lose our secure position (no longer counted as TRUE CHRISTIANS).

5. When The End comes, And Jesus arrives in His Glory, He will judge everyone and by His Grace irrevocably gift salvation to those who are still TRUE CHRISTIANS.

8c. Some one-time TRUE CHRISTIANS will not be gifted salvation, Because they turned away from faith and Jesus.

8d. Those who never-quite-became TRUE CHRISTIANS will not be gifted salvation, Even though someone told them "you are irrevocably saved" before they ever started on the path.
Debate Round No. 5
27 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by TheBoldDebator 3 years ago
TheBoldDebator
(KJV)
John 10:28 - And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, Neither shall any [man] pluck them out of my hand.
Eph. 4:30 And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, Whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.
Posted by Skye2468 3 years ago
Skye2468
This is he who came by water and blood"Jesus Christ; not by the water only but by the water and the blood. And the Spirit is the one who testifies, Because the Spirit is the truth. For there are three that testify: the Spirit and the water and the blood; and these three agree. If we receive the testimony of men, The testimony of God is greater, For this is the testimony of God that he has borne concerning his Son. Whoever believes in the Son of God has the testimony in himself. Whoever does not believe God has made him a liar, Because he has not believed in the testimony that God has borne concerning his Son. And this is the testimony, That God gave us eternal life, And this life is in his Son. Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life. I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, That you may know that you have eternal life. 1 John 5:6-13
Posted by Skye2468 3 years ago
Skye2468
Maybe I made it sound to complicated. It is by "grace through faith alone that we are saved. " To add anything else would be false.

The reason I said salvation happens when born again is because that is what happens when you enter the new covenant with God.

I completely agree with you when you say "too many friends in High School had been taught that they can keep doing the same detestable things as the wicked as long as they say a prayer in their heart accepting Jesus. " That is completely a false teaching.

I am not saying that at all. I am saying once Jesus saves you. God changes your heart, And you won't want to do those wicked things anymore. If one continues to practice sin after "saying a prayer in their heart and accepting Jesus" Then they were not genuine, And they are not saved. Please take note that a saved Christian can still sin and stumble, But the difference is the saved Christian will hate the sin. While the false convert will either not really care, Or practice it.

I understand your concern. If someone is not truly saved we don't want to tell them that they are saved. At the same time though, If someone is saved we don't want to cause doubt in there security in Christ.

A horrible message to preach would be that a Christian could continue to practice sin, But that is not what I am teaching. I am teaching that Christ has come to set us free from the bondage of sin and the law. Jesus fulfilled his Fathers laws so we wouldn't have too, Because we couldn't do it. Then he died on the cross and rose from the dead three days later and defeated death. If we are genuine about repenting and wanting to be saved. He will save us and never let us go, And if we start falling He will catch us. If we start turning away He will correct us. It is not I who does the work, It is Jesus, And I will cast all my burdens upon him. That is the good news of the gospel, And all glory goes to God. It is by Gods grace that all this happens.
Posted by GuitarSlinger 3 years ago
GuitarSlinger
@sky2468

Nope, Hebrews doesn't teach that.
Posted by Skye2468 3 years ago
Skye2468
GuitarSlinger - Before I respond, I would like to ask a question to see what you think about this verse. Does Hebrews 6:4-6 teach that if we lose salvation it is impossible to come back to repentence again?
Posted by GuitarSlinger 3 years ago
GuitarSlinger
**But how would we know that they were a Christian and lost salvation? **

I guess that begs the question, "What does it mean to be a 'Christian'"? I believe a Christian is one who strives to follows Christ and strives to follow His teachings. We will all fail and fall short, But when we fall, We always have the opportunity to rise and try again to follow him. When we sin and turn away from Christ, We lost salvation. But when we turn back and try again, He saves us. That turning and following him again is what the "working out your salvation with fear and trembling is all about. " THAT is what I believe Phillipians 2:12 is saying. Life is a continual struggle from the moment we are born until the time we die-- a struggle to do the right thing and follow God. We hvae to struggle to follow Christ. When we do, He saves us. When we choose to turn away (MY will be done, Not HIS will), We lose that salvation. God will never force anyone to be with him (that violates our free will). But when we turn to him, He is there, To welcome us.

** If you had to work for salvation it would contradict this verse.
For by grace you have been saved through faith, And that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, Not of works, Lest anyone should boast. Ephesians 2:8-9 **

In no way does it contradict that verse. All that verse is saying is that it is God (Christ) who saves us.

I kind of equate to this: have you ever seen someone saved from the clutches of death (I have)? Guess what, Once saved, That person goes on living their life. They may make changes, But guess what they may (will) die again. Similarly, We can choose to follow Christ, And if we are in a state of grace when we die, We are saved. If however, We choose not follow Christ/God, Guess what? God will gives us that, Because that is what we want. Thus, We lose our salvation.
Posted by backwardseden 3 years ago
backwardseden
@Skye2468 Here's how your argument of you believing that "we all deserve the wrath and eternal punishment" is tragically and fatally flawed by 100%. And think about it before reacting and use some, Actually any psychology. . . Do you really think that your religion would be followed, And or would be gotten ten feet off the ground if its consensus is "we all deserve the wrath and eternal punishment"? WHO in their right frame of mind is going to follow anything with a belief like that for ---any--- length of time? Its exactly like someone is deliberately wanting and willfully to be eternally depressed, Dejected, Destroyed for his or her entire life. Who is going to want to follow a path like that AND expect others that are close to him or her to do the same? The pyramids could have ---never--- been built, The Maya calendar could have never been so correctly calculated, Stonehenge, Manchu Picchu, Gobekli Tepe, Teotihuacan, Angor Wat etc etc etc could have ---never--- been built following this philosophy. Again. . . You are far far far better than this and you deserve better. Its simple. Believe in yourself.
Posted by Skye2468 3 years ago
Skye2468
GuitarSlinger - Just because Judas was a disciple, I don't think that meant he was saved. There is nothing indicating that to my knowledge anyway.

I do agree that just because someone accepts Jesus as their Lord and savior, That doesn't mean they are actually a Christian. But how would we know that they were a Christian and lost salvation?

If you had to work for salvation it would contradict this verse.
For by grace you have been saved through faith, And that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, Not of works, Lest anyone should boast. Ephesians 2:8-9

So what do you think Philippians 2:12 means exactly?
Posted by GuitarSlinger 3 years ago
GuitarSlinger
Christians can lose their salvation. It all depends on the choices we make and the state of our soul at the moment. That's why Paul admonishes his disciples to work out their salvation "with fear and trembling. " If a Christian was already saved, There'd be no reason to continue working out your salvation.

In fact, Throughout Scripture are passages that tell followers to "be ready". . . . . Etc.

Just because someone says they "believe in Jesus Christ" and they accept Him as their Lord and Savior, They could still lose their salvation by choosing not to follow Him (or disobey commandments, Etc).

Look at what happened to Judas. He was a disciple and he chose not to continue follow. Hell, Look at all the disciples. Almost all betrayed Jesus (Peter as an example).

So, Yes, Salvation can be lost if you do not live your life right.
Posted by Skye2468 3 years ago
Skye2468
The Parable of the Sower Explained
"Therefore hear the parable of the sower: When anyone hears the word of the kingdom, And does not understand it, Then the wicked one comes and snatches away what was sown in his heart. This is he who received seed by the wayside. But he who received the seed on stony places, This is he who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy; yet he has no root in himself, But endures only for a while. For when tribulation or persecution arises because of the word, Immediately he stumbles. Now he who received seed among the thorns is he who hears the word, And the cares of this world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, And he becomes unfruitful. But he who received seed on the good ground is he who hears the word and understands it, Who indeed bears fruit and produces: some a hundredfold, Some sixty, Some thirty. " Matthew 13:18-23
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