Christians are well aware of the importance the Lord places on a relationship with Him. We are to love the Lord with all of our heart, soul, mind and strength. Many will admit to their inability in achieving this lofty standard.
The greatest deterrent to building that intimate relationship is the realization of our dark side and the resultant shame and guilt.
Fleshly attempts to please Him and become holy through willpower or ‘won’t’ power births two basic problems in believers:
• Self-righteousness (a legalistic, hypocritical pretense and cover -up)
• Self-condemnation (an honest appraisal of themselves as losers, which leads to more
shame and guilt)
To overcome believers’ self-effort attempts to defeat sin there are two basic alternatives.
Option 1. “Once saved, always saved”
To completely eradicate the problem of shame and guilt, a one-size-fits-all solution was birthed by some teachers. The presumption: Once a believer receives Christ, every sin they have committed, or will commit, is forgiven … unconditionally, or using the now coined phrase, “Once saved, always saved.”
On one hand, it successfully removed the fear of a Christian losing their salvation through a lack of total holiness. On the other hand, it successfully opened the door for believers to use grace as an excuse to maintain their sinful lifestyles.
Furthermore, believers are still left with the original problem of achieving holiness through self-effort, and the catastrophic fallout of either self-righteousness or self-condemnation.
While the intention of these teachers was sincere, they were blindsided in regard to the many Scriptures which disprove this doctrine and reveal the teaching as fake grace. More importantly, they did not have the revelation God’s alternative solution.