Q. In your recent article on “The Nature of Post-Church Salvation” you suggested that the parable of 10 virgins speaks directly to tribulation saints. By implication you also suggested that tribulation saints could “lose” their salvation by not remaining alert and staying faithful until Christ comes.
I have a very hard time with this because you are indirectly suggesting that they have to be found without sin at the time of the Second Coming. We are by human nature, fallen sinful creatures, the sin nature is within each and every one of us. It seems to me that you are taking grace and Jesus’ sacrifice for all of our sins whether we are saved before or after the rapture out of the equation.
It also seems to me that you’re saying that the continued guarantee of eternal life (following the acceptance of Christ as their Lord & Savior) for the tribulation saint depends solely upon individual behavior. By suggesting this, you are leaving an open door for pride to abound in the heart of the tribulation saint, based on whether he/she is found ready of his/her own accord at the time of the Second Coming. Where is the doctrine of saved by grace not by works lest anyone should boast? It will be difficult enough to go through the tribulation for believers and non-believers alike. I can’t help but think that you are taking God’s grace and mercy out of the equation when it comes to tribulation saints.
A. I think you misunderstood the article. Speaking of the Church and Tribulation believers, here’s what I said and I quote, “In both cases salvation is by faith alone, but that’s where the similarity ends.”
Unlike the Church, Tribulation believers won’t have the Holy Spirit sealed within them and will be responsible for maintaining their own faith. It’s the same relationship with God that Old Testament saints, who were also saved by faith, enjoyed.
They won’t have to be without sin, but will have to believe that the Lord is coming to save them even though it will look for all the world as though the anti-Christ is winning. And yes, it will be a great burden for them in the midst of all the persecution they’ll have to endure. That’s why it’s so important for people to be saved now while the church is still here.