Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away (John 15:2)
Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly,
nor standeth in the way of sinners,
nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.
But his delight is in the law of the Lord;
and in his law doth he meditate day and night.
And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water,
that bringeth forth his fruit in his season;
his leaf also shall not wither;
and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.
The ungodly are not so:
but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away.
Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment,
nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.
For the Lord knoweth the way of the righteous:
but the way of the ungodly shall perish.
More of my story: When I said my prayer of forgiveness, God saved me of all my sins; past, present, and future. So I thought. I lived a life no different than a good moral nonbeliever (with the exception of believing in and talking about God) on and off for over 20 years. Sure, there were times when I was on fire. As time went by, my heart grew hard and my faith waxed cold. During that time I lost assurance of my salvation. I even doubted God. Sin had power over me. I could not control its desires. I listened to the pastors on the radio and at church. They all assured me of my eternal security and how Paul also sinned regularly and could not do good like he wanted as described in Romans 7.
God continued to show me that I was living in sin and had to stop. I finally listened.
I realized that most of what I had learned and applied to my life over the last 20 years had not worked. So, six months ago, after God had prodded me at my sister’s house in PA, back in 2012. I started asking questions. I was not getting answers from theology books or the many Bible versions I was reading, (NET, ESV, NLT, etc.). So, I put them all down and began to study the King James Bible. Then, God began to speak, I began to learn and he started the transformation of my heart and will.
One of the first things I wanted to find out was my eternal security. My church believes in OSAS and I wanted to as well. But the Bible was not showing me that. When I first got saved, God saved me of my sins. I had to repent every time I sinned and frankly got tired of it, so I just decided to live in sin and accept OSAS. What a mistake that was. I am convinced that if I died some time in the last 20 years, I would have awoken in Hell. I didn’t love God. I didn’t work for Him. I loved the world.
Everywhere I read in God’s word, He tells us to live a holy life and abide in His ways. Jesus never sinned. Thanks be to God, He finally began to give me power over my sin. Through persisting in Him like the widow, He heard my plea and is helping me be an overcomer. There is much to work on. I messed up a lot of my life over the last 20 years and have tons of junk piled up because of sin. It will take a while to clean up my back yard so to speak.
I still sin but it no longer has power over me like it use to. Now, its time to continue growing in faith. God will be faithful, that I am sure. Sin has overrun so many areas of our daily lives. I try avoid it where ever it is: the TV, magazines, internet, movies, advertisements, driving down the road, and even people watching. There all so many enticements encouraging us to sin. But I am thankful God is helping me.
When I read Jesus’ words, “Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?“, it troubles my soul. He is talking about us. My view on salvation is completely different now. Below are key words in bold that highlight God’s plan of salvation we are commanded to follow. Salvation is conditional. God gave us the story of His people as an example. He also gave us a complete road map in the New Testament.
God clearly instructed us to no longer submit to the power of sin. If we do, we are not abiding in Him and there are eternal consequences. We need to flee the dangers of sin lest it snares us and we are overcome by it.
The Plan of Salvation
(Acts 20: 20-21, 27) “and how I kept back nothing that was profitable unto you, but have shewed you, and have taught you publickly, and from house to house, testifying both to the Jews, and also to the Greeks, repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ. For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God.”
(Acts 26:19, 20) . . . “I was not disobedient unto the heavenly vision: but shewed first unto them of Damascus, and at Jerusalem, and throughout all the coasts of Judæa, and then to the Gentiles, that they should repent and turn to God, and do works meet for repentance.”
(I Corinthians 15:1-4) Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; by which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; and that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:
We need to follow all God’s instructions
(1 Corinthians 11:1-2) Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ. Now I praise you, brethren, that ye remember me in all things, and keep the ordinances, as I delivered them to you.
That means we need to live differently
(Luke 8:21) And he answered and said unto them, My mother and my brethren are these which hear the word of God, and do it.
(John 15:1, 2) I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman. Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit.
(Romans 8:1) There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
(Romans 8:12-14) Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh. For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live. For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God
(Galatians 5:19-21) Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.
(Galatians 5:24) And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.
(Ephesians 5:1-7) Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children; and walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour. But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints; neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks. For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience. Be not ye therefore partakers with them.
(Titus 2:11-14) For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.
We Must Endure to the End.
(Matthew 10:22) And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved.
(Matthew 24:9-13) Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name’s sake. And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another. And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many. And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold. But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.
(John 15:3-7) Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you. Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me. I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing. If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned. If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.
(1 Corinthians 15:1-2) Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; by which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain.
(Colossians 1:21-23) And you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now hath he reconciled in the body of his flesh through death, to present you holy and unblameable and unreproveable in his sight: if ye continue in the faith grounded and settled, and be not moved away from the hope of the gospel, which ye have heard, and which was preached to every creature which is under heaven; whereof I Paul am made a minister;
(Hebrews 3:14) For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence stedfast unto the end;
(Hebrews 10:38-39) Now the just shall live by faith: but if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him. But we are not of them who draw back unto perdition; but of them that believe to the saving of the soul.
(Revelation 2:10, 11) Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.
We can Fall Away
(Hebrews 6:4-6) For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost, and have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come, if they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame.
(2 Peter 2:20) For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning.
(James 1:14-16) but every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death. Do not err, my beloved brethren.
We can come back
(Luke 15:24) for this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry.
(1 Corinthians 5:5) to deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.
(James 5:19-20) Brethren, if any of you do err from the truth, and one convert him; let him know, that he which converteth the sinner from the error of his way shall save a soul from death, and shall hide a multitude of sins.
We are not saved by works
(Galatians 2:16-18) knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified. But if, while we seek to be justified by Christ, we ourselves also are found sinners, is therefore Christ the minister of sin? God forbid. For if I build again the things which I destroyed, I make myself a transgressor.