John 5:16-47; Mark 6:6-11; Matthew 9:35-10:42; Luke 9:1-5
God gave the twelve disciples the ability to “heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons.” (Matthew 6:8) Jesus charged them with the mission of preaching His message throughout the territory: “The kingdom of heaven is near.”
What I am going to say is going to be controversial to many. But hear me out. The fact is, Judas Iscariot is listed by name as one of the twelve given this ability. Judas followed Jesus as much as the other eleven, was used by God along with the others, had the same message, and the same gifts.
I’ve heard people say Judas didn’t really believe. Scripture does not say that. We know from Scripture that something happened in Judas, and he eventually walked away from the Truth, betraying Jesus. But what we read here in Matthew gives us every indication that he and the other disciples were on a mission for God together.
Most people I know firmly believe a believer can’t stop being a believer, once saved always saved. I think that is a dangerous theology, according to Scripture. I read account after account of God’s “chosen people” walking away from Him, worshiping idols, blatantly disobeying God after worshiping Him. I think of Solomon. I know there are arguments against that point of view, but let’s forego the debate for a minute.
Here’s my concern and it’s being played out in 2019 through the “Bethel Movement.” Christians all over the world are gravitating toward this lie. Bible believing churches are singing Bethel praise songs, Christian radio is playing Hillsong, Amanda Cook, Jeremy Riddle, and others. People who love the Lord get satisfaction praising God with abandoned while repeating, “You’re a Good Good Father.”
What’s wrong with that, you might ask. I would encourage you to look into this movement for yourself. It is gaining strength, and Christians are abandoning the Truth in hoards. The god they are praising is not the God of the Bible. But they would have you believe the Bethel Movement is the awakening of true Christianity.
Look into it, but not before you know what the Bible says. Don’t look into Mormonism, or the Bethel Movement or any other cult without knowing what Scripture says. Not a verse here and there. The Bible is the complete Word of God. Period.
Guard your hearts. Stand for the Truth of Scripture. I think it’s more important today than it has been at any time in my lifetime. This is serious.
It’s true that no one can snatch a believer out of God’s hand. Satan will never have the power to override your will to be true to God.
Unless you let him.
The difficulty with “once saved, always saved,” is that the emphasis is on the wrong half of the saying. It’s not “once saved, ALWAYS SAVED;” it’s ONCE SAVED, always saved.” The trouble is, with our current views on evangelism, being saved is just a matter of walking an aisle and praying a prayer at some “altar”. It’s easy. But our Lord said that it’s impossible; apart from the effectual work of the Holy Spirit, another truth generally disbelieved in our churches, apart from that work, there is no salvation. Those who are truly the Lord’s cannot be lost. Those who are truly the Lord’s….
I do understand your position and, as always, appreciate your wisdom and insight into God’s Word. I will continue to pray for all of us Christians, that we will guard our hearts and minds, that we will study to show ourselves approved, put on the whole armor of God, and fight the Father of Lies with all our strength. May we resist the devil even in his subtle attacks on our souls. God bless you as you continue to serve Him so faithfully. I appreciate you.