Call-In Classic Christianity Radio – Bob George P452 (7-04-19)
Bob received calls from several callers who heard error. These are the questions asked. Can I be in and out of fellowship with God? Have I committed the unpardonable sin? What about a young child or the handicapped or those who have never heard the gospel of salvation?
Dale called for clarification of truth from a pastor who spoke error concerning a believer being in and out of fellowship with God. He had incorrectly taught from the parable of the prodigal son from Luke 15 to explain a false teaching of being in and out of fellowship with God. Luke 15 is not talking about a believer but an unsaved lost son who received righteousness by faith and faith alone and an older brother who failed to receive that righteousness by faith. It is really a parable about the self righteous Jew and the non-seeking Gentile who hears the message of Christ, believes and is saved.
Mark calls on behalf of his 8 year old daughter concerning about what happens when young children die. Bob shared that for young children or the mentally handicapped, we just trust in God, who is perfectly loving and just to make such decisions for those decisions are not ours to make. We simply trust God to do the right thing in line with who He is and leave it there. For those who are mature and have the capacity to reason, there is no other name under heaven by which man can be saved.
Jeremy called be cause he was troubled over not knowing if all his sins had been forgiven and if he had committed the unpardonable sin. He fins himself repeating a prayer of salvation to make sure he has not committed some sin that is unpardonable. In the end, after Bob shared an explanation of what God did by his death, burial and resurrection, he came to the conclusion that he did not think he was saved and wanted to be saved. Bob shared simple truth again and Jeremy had confidence in the truth. Prayer never saves anyone. Prayer is an expression of what is in your heart, what you believe to be true, not historically but for you personally, that Jesus died to take away the sins of the world, and yours included, and that was to prepare you to put your trust in the resurrection of Jesus from the dead so that the life that raised Jesus from the dead has raised you from the dead also and given you that same life that is in Christ Jesus.
A common misunderstanding of the gospel is not understanding the totality of the cross, the death to take away the sins of the world and his resurrection to give new life to man. As far as being impossible to correct the unpardonable sin, that has to do to your unbelief, and if you die before you change your unbelief to belief. The only sin attributable to man is the denial or passive indifference to the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus. The sins of the entire world was placed on the back of Jesus, never to be seen again. God is not looking upon our sins today. He is looking upon our sin of the rejection of the son of God. The only question that God will ever ask a person, “What did you do with my Son?” “Did you accept by faith what he did for you when he died on a cross to take away sins in order to rise again to give life to you?” Or did you ignore that with a passive indifference or an active rebellion? Why did God do that? How are you going to judge sins? How many sins will you do before he says he had it? Or how many good deeds do you have to do before he says you are okay? There is no way to determine that, is there? So Jesus neutralized the entire world, the Jews and the Gentiles, both into the area of spiritual death. Jesus took away sins so you are not being judged by how much you sinned or how much you have not sinned, but have you come alive in my Son. Have you accepted his resurrection? Throughout Acts and the gospels you read about the resurrection. The apostle Paul said without the resurrection you are still dead in your sins. Salvation is not getting your sins forgiven, for Jesus already did that by shedding his blood as a propitiation for the sins of the entire world, but getting the life that is in Christ Jesus, by his resurrection from the dead. God does not dealt with us according to sins, for then he would have to deal with us on the basis of sin and death. For those who are in Christ Jesus, you are his sons and daughters and he deals with us in fatherhood, in loving grace and correction, by renewing our minds with truth, so we grow up in Him. The Holy Spirit has been placed in the believer and is continually at work in us and through us, to the degree we let Him, for we are told not to resist the Spirit of grace.
Dale from Corpus Christi, Texas
Dale was reading a book by a well known pastor who believes in “in and out of fellowship with God” and he used Luke 15, the parable of the prodigal son as an example of a believer who is out of fellowship can regain his fellowship.
11 Jesus continued: “There was a man who had two sons. 12 The younger one said to his father, ‘Father, give me my share of the estate.’ So he divided his property between them.
13 “Not long after that, the younger son got together all he had, set off for a distant country and there squandered his wealth in wild living. 14 After he had spent everything, there was a severe famine in that whole country, and he began to be in need. 15 So he went and hired himself out to a citizen of that country, who sent him to his fields to feed pigs. 16 He longed to fill his stomach with the pods that the pigs were eating, but no one gave him anything.
17 “When he came to his senses, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired servants have food to spare, and here I am starving to death! 18 I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. 19 I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired servants.’ 20 So he got up and went to his father.
“But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him.
21 “The son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’
22 “But the father said to his servants, ‘Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. 23 Bring the fattened calf and kill it. Let’s have a feast and celebrate. 24 For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ So they began to celebrate.
25 “Meanwhile, the older son was in the field. When he came near the house, he heard music and dancing. 26 So he called one of the servants and asked him what was going on. 27 ‘Your brother has come,’ he replied, ‘and your father has killed the fattened calf because he has him back safe and sound.’
28 “The older brother became angry and refused to go in. So his father went out and pleaded with him. 29 But he answered his father, ‘Look! All these years I’ve been slaving for you and never disobeyed your orders. Yet you never gave me even a young goat so I could celebrate with my friends. 30 But when this son of yours who has squandered your property with prostitutes comes home, you kill the fattened calf for him!’
31 “‘My son,’ the father said, ‘you are always with me, and everything I have is yours. 32 But we had to celebrate and be glad, because this brother of yours was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’”
This is an example of someone, such as the pastor, using a human experience down here to explain God. They think, “If this is true of a human experience down here then certainly that must be true of God. In other words, God certainly cannot be any different that us”. So if someone offends me I will forgive him then he must ask me to forgive him before I can forgive him. That is nonsense, and the parable of the lost son brings this out. Bob never heard his son telling him to forgive him. His son just told him he messed up and we dealt with it and that was it. Forgiveness was never an issue with Bob and his children. Sin was already forgiven at the cross.
The parable is about a lost son, not a person out of fellowship but someone not saved. He wanted to take his inheritance early out of rebellion. Before he could even say to his father, “I have sinned against heaven and against you”, his father came to him. That was not a case of being out of fellowship but of a relationship of someone with a father who wanted to go his own way.
There is no place in the bible about in and out fellowship with God. Why do people keep harping on these things? Just like tithing, it is not there in the New Testament. You have been called into fellowship with his Son. If you are in the light, saved as Christ Jesus is in the light, the two of you have fellowship with one another, and then Jesus his Son cleanses you of all sin, which prohibits you from ever being in darkness.
1 John 1:5-7
5 This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all. 6 If we claim to have fellowship with him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live out the truth. 7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.
You are in the light and there is a fellowship between you. Nowhere in the bible is there anything about bouncing in and out of fellowship. He came home because he is a son. The pig did not come home because he is a pig. The son had decided it was more fun to be with Satan than staying home with his father. When the son came back, the father was already waiting for him.
A more powerful story is that of the older son, the self righteous one. He has been subservient to his father and has been a good son and proud of it. Nothing wrong with being a good son and being obedient to the father but do not be self righteous about it. He got angry with his younger brother coming home. This son squandering his money with prostitutes and you throw him a party for him an yet I have been good and you never threw a party for me. The older son pouted and his father chastised him for that. This younger son was blind and now he sees, was dead and is alive again. You have a sinner who came to his senses and came home. The older son stayed home trying to be good and gets mad concerning his younger brother who was saved. This is a picture of the Jew and the Gentile.
30 What then shall we say? That the Gentiles, who did not pursue righteousness, have obtained it, a righteousness that is by faith; 31 but the people of Israel, who pursued the law as the way of righteousness, have not attained their goal.
Brothers and sisters, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for the Israelites is that they may be saved. 2 For I can testify about them that they are zealous for God, but their zeal is not based on knowledge. 3 Since they did not know the righteousness of God and sought to establish their own, they did not submit to God’s righteousness. 4 Christ is the culmination of the law so that there may be righteousness for everyone who believes.
The Jew would be the older son who stayed at home trying to be righteous. The Gentile, represented by the younger son, is the one who did not pursue righteousness yet obtained it by faith. The Jews pursued their own righteousness by way of the law and did not obtain the righteousness of God that only comes by faith. Are you saying the son who squandered all his wealth but then came to his senses, came home, and obtained righteousness? Yes. Are you saying the son at home who tried to obey the instructions of his father did not obtain righteousness? Yes. The son at home was trying to gain righteousness by works and not by faith. The prodigal son received righteousness by faith and faith alone. Those are the two types of people we have in the world today.
Mark from New Orleans, Louisiana
Mark asked a question about how young children and mentally handicapped people are saved. Bob answered by stating the character of God. Those kinds of decisions go into the hand of a perfectly loving and just God. When I realize that God is going to make that decision, then I do not have to make that decision. Basically, accept by faith that God, being perfectly loving and just, will be the one who will make the right decision in line with who He is. Therefore, one does not need to be worried about such things with those who have not developed the ability to reason. Churches typically have practices of baby dedication and other things, possibly out of unwarranted fear, and there is no support in the bible for such things. Also, if a person has never heard the gospel, if such is possible, then the same inference can be applied – trust God to do the right thing because of who He is. God will judge all those things from the heart of love, and falls into the hands of a perfectly just and loving God. For the rest of us, we are told there is no other name under heaven by which you can be saved.
for God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved.”
Jeremy from Phoenix, Arizona
Jeremy wonders if he is saved. The biggest concern of his is the unpardonable sin. His mind is double minded; that he is forgiven and then thinks he has sinned in a way that he wonders if it is the unpardonable sin. He has prayed to receive Christ but gets caught up in confessing sins. He has doubt about God being three in one. Is there a point a man can go that it would be impossible for him to return to God with his heart.
Bob shares truth with him and leads him to understand and believe the truth of God’s provision for him in Jesus Christ.
As far as being impossible to correct the unpardonable sin, that has to do to your unbelief, and if you die before you change your unbelief to belief. The only sin attributable to man is the denial or passive indifference to the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus. The sins of the entire world was placed on the back of Jesus, never to be seen again. God is not looking upon our sins today. He is looking upon our sin of the rejection of the son of God. The only question that God will ever ask a person, “What did you do with my Son?” “Did you accept by faith what he did for you when he died on a cross to take away sins in order to rise again to give life to you?” Or did you ignore that with a passive indifference or an active rebellion? Why did God do that? How are you going to judge sins? How many sins will you do before he says he had it? Or how many good deeds do you have to do before he says you are okay? There is no way to determine that, is there? So Jesus neutralized the entire world, the Jews and the Gentiles, both into the area of spiritual death. Jesus took away sins so you are not being judged by how much you sinned or how much you have not sinned, but have you come alive in my Son. Have you accepted his resurrection? Throughout Acts and the gospels you read about the resurrection. The apostle Paul said without the resurrection you are still dead in your sins.
1 Corinthians 15:16-19
16 For if the dead are not raised, then Christ has not been raised either. 17 And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins. 18 Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ are lost. 19 If only for this life we have hope in Christ, we are of all people most to be pitied.
If I am going to claim by faith, this is my testimony. He died not only for my sins but all the sins of the entire world. That is either the truth or a lie. If it a lie then throw the whole bible away and say, “eat, drink and be merry, for tomorrow we die’.
1 John 2:2
2 And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.
26 If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, 27 but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God.
If that is true, and you have not rebelled against the knowledge of truth, then you do not have to worry about whether you sinned too much because that is behind his back never to be seen again. So how does God deal with us today? If he dealt with us according to sins, then he would have to deal with us on the basis of sin and death. You cannot separate the two. It would be like a law with no penalty. You cannot separate law from the penalty of it. Otherwise the law is meaningless. The law is meaningless without a penalty. It is like have a speed sign with no penalty for disobeying. The sign is useless and so is the law. You cannot separate sin from death, sin from the penalty.
The wages of sin is death
2 Corinthians 5:21
God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God
Thank God he is not dealing with us on the basis of sin and death.
Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, 2 because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death.
God is dealing with you and me on the basis of His child. You have now become a child of the living God. He is dealing with you on the basis of fatherhood and childhood. He is dealing with us on the basis of continually renewing our minds, teaching us truth, and setting us free. He is dealing with us on the basis of the new life that we have in Christ Jesus.
Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God
Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free
The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.”
We have been born again to serve in the newness of life, not in the old way of the law that kill, but in the way of the spirit that gives life. Just as teaching a child, teaching them and admonishing them until they grow up to become mature. There is no condemnation awaiting you.
But now, by dying to what once bound us, we have been released from the law so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit, and not in the old way of the written code.
As far as these thoughts you have, lets ponder over truth, if indeed you are in Christ, and only you can determine that, in what Jesus did. Forget about what you are doing but in saving faith in what he is doing. You focus on what Jesus alone did for you. Jesus died on the cross to take away sins of the world from the eyes of God. If you say yes to that, then that is the preparation for salvation. Do you believe he was raised from the dead, so that you, who were born dead spiritually, could be raised to new life in Him? If so, you have come to him by faith, saying “God, if you do not give me life then I will remain dead. My entire confidence is in you and you alone”. If you stood before God and He said to you, “What have you done to deserve to enter heaven?” Then the only answer you can say is “I have your son. I have accepted your provision for me.” As a born again believer, it is not unusual for Satan to put doubts in our head. Satan does not give up easily but he will still try to torture you with error. Satan will try to bombard you with error. But when you know truth, then this is how you deal with it. “Satan, I know what the truth is, and you are not giving it to me, so I am not listening to you.” Replace error with truth.
Where do you think you are in that equation, Jeremy? Jeremy said he know he has prayed it before but has doubts if he got that truth in his heart. He is afraid to say he prayed it.
Praying of it is not the issue. You are not saved by praying. You are saved by faith. The prayer is just a way of expressing the truth of what has happened in your heart. When you placed faith in Jesus when you have said in your heart this truth, “If you did not take away my sins, then I am still in my sins. If you were not raised from the dead then I am still dead”. Prayer can or cannot be an extension of merely expressing in your heart, of accepting that truth in your heart.
Jeremy said he does not think he has done this. Bob then lead asks him if he wants this life. Jeremy said yes and so Bob continued sharing.
It is like believing the chair can hold you up but if you really believe it you have to sit on it. What you are about to put your faith in is so important that if this does not work then you and I will go to hell. It is placing your faith in the truth of the death, burial and resurrection for you, and more than just a belief in a historical event. He died for you. He suffered and died for your sins. When he was raised from the dead, he was raised with you in mind.
1 Corinthians 15:1-4
Now, brothers and sisters, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you, which you received and on which you have taken your stand. 2 By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain. 3 For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures,
Bob then led Jeremy through a prayer through the scriptures, encouraging Jeremy to express to God what he said he believed in his heart. For earlier Bob had stated he hesitated to lead him in prayer because prayer does not save anyone, and Jeremy being all caught up in error and in repeated prayers full of error. What saves you is your faith in the truth that you are saying personally to God.
25 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; 26 and whoever lives by believing in me will never die. Do you believe this?”
If you do and you are saying yes you do believe this, and you put your faith in that. When you have decided in your heart that this is true and you say, “Yes, I believe this with all my heart”. You say in your heart, “I believe what you said in your word”.
1 John 5:12
Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life.
You say, “I do not want to remain dead. I therefore ask you to come into my heart as my Lord and Savior and best friend. In Jesus name, amen.
Jeremy repeated the words Bob led him in prayer. Now Jeremy that is last you have to do that. The fact you may have doubts is not unusual for Satan wants to do that. As far as the Trinity, “I cannot comprehend Spirit but God is Spirit. I never smelled, seen or touched Spirit. Yet God’s word says, “You must worship in Spirit and in truth”. How Spirit indwells by the Father and Son as Spirit, we try to put flesh on that. The bible tells us God is the Father, God is the Son, and God is the Holy Spirit. I may not be able to comprehend but I can apprehend that because it is stated and therefore that is what I know to be true. There is one God and He exists as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, and you can leave that alone.
God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.
1 Corinthians 8:6
6 yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from whom all things came and for whom we live; and there is but one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom all things came and through whom we live.
The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.
If I were you, I would write in my bible the date you trusted him. Today you nailed it down. Read the word of God and let the Spirit, who lives in you, teach you the meaning of his word.
And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of his Spirit who lives in you.
But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come.