Assurance of Salvation--Versus Once Saved Always Saved

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Dear Reader, One must be careful to note the qualifiying key words to the following statements. They may appear to contradict, but they do not.

Saved -- Assurance "When man is created anew in Christ Jesus, he becomes a partaker of the divine nature. God has, through His own power, united in man the human and the divine. He clothes humanity with the robe of Christ's righteousness. Man is enabled to discern the Saviour, and by beholding he is changed into the likeness of His character. He recognizes the words of Christ, 'All power is given unto Me in heaven and in earth.' He who discerns Christ is a partaker of His Spirit and His righteousness. He has the inward assurance that Christ is abiding in the soul-temple." E.G. White Manuscript Releases, vol. 21, p. 20.

Contrast the above with: "We are never to rest in a satisfied condition, and cease to make advancement, saying, 'I am saved.' When this idea is entertained, the motives for watchfulness, for prayer, for earnest endeavor to press onward to higher attainments, cease to exist. No sanctified tongue will be found uttering these words till Christ shall come...As long as man is full of weakness--for of himself he cannot save his soul--he should never dare to say 'I am saved.'" E.G. White, 1 SM, p. 314.

Once Saved Always Saved --Not Scriptural "When the righteous turneth from his righteousness, and committeth iniquity, he shall even die thereby." Ezekiel 33:18.

"It is impossible for finite minds to comprehend the work of redemption. Its mystery exceeds human knowledge;yet he who passes from death to life realizes that it is a divine reality." Desire of Ages, 173.

Small Number Saved -- "I was shown the startling fact that but a small portion of those who now profess the truth will be sanctified by it and be saved. Many will get above the simplicity of the work. They will conform to the world, cherish idols, and become spiritually dead. The humble, self-sacrificing followers of Jesus will pass on to perfection, leaving behind the indifferent and lovers of the world." Testimonies, Vol. 1, 608.

Obviously the 144,000 pass on to perfection because they have no guile. But there is a great innumerable multitude above and beyond the 144,000.

This is supported by Scripture which says that many are called but few are chosen, and wide is the path but narrow is the gate--few there be who enter.

"Never can we safely put confidence in self or feel, this side of heaven, that we are secure against temptation. Those who accept the Saviour, however sincere their conversion, should never be taught to say or to feel that they are saved. This is misleading. Every one should be taught to cherish hope and faith; but even when we give ourselves to Christ and know that He accepts us, we are not beyond the reach of temptation. God's word declares, 'Many shall be purified, and made white, and tried.' Dan. 12:10. Only he who endures the trial will receive the crown of life. (James 1:12.).
Those who accept Christ, and in their first confidence say, I am saved, are in danger of trusting to themselves. They lose sight of their own weakness and their constant need of divine strength. They are unprepared for Satan's devices, and under temptation many, like Peter, fall into the very depths of sin. We are admonished, 'Let him that thinketh he standeth, take heed lest he fall.' 1 Cor. 10:12. Our only safety is in constant distrust of self, and dependence on Christ." Christ's Object Lessons, p. 155.

"When the conflict of life is ended, when the armour is laid off at the feet of Jesus, when the saints of God are glorified, then and then only will it be safe to claim that we are saved, and sinless." Selected Messages, Book 3, p. 356.

"I am a sinner, and He died upon Calvary's cross to save me. I need not remain a moment longer unsaved. He died and rose again for my justification, and He will save me now. I accept the forgiveness He has promised." E.G. White, Selected Messages, Book 1, 392.

"I have listened to testimonies like this: 'I have not the light that I desire; I have not the assurance of the favor of God.' Such testimonies express only unbelief and darkness. Are you expecting that your merit will recommend you to the favor of God, and that you must be free from sin before you trust his power to save? If this is the struggle going on in your mind, I fear you will gain no strength, and will finally become discouraged. As the brazen serpent was lifted up in the wilderness, so was Christ lifted up to draw all men unto him. All who looked upon that serpent, the means that God had provided, were healed; so in our sinfulness, in our great need, we must 'look and live.' While we realize our helpless condition without Christ, we must not be discouraged; we must rely upon the merits of a crucified and risen Saviour. Poor sin-sick, discouraged soul, look and live. Jesus has pledged his word; he will save all who come unto him. Then let us come confessing our sins, bringing forth fruits meet for repentance." E.G. White, Second Advent Review and Sabbath Herald, 04-22-84, pr. 5.

God bless,

Ron Beaulieu