Q. Thank you for your wonderful site and the effort and Christian care you put into it.
But now I am confused about the OSAS answer you gave to the recent question posted about that. I always thought that if a person does not experience the conviction of the Holy Spirit about their ongoing sins after saying the prayer that maybe they said it flippantly and did not really mean it.
Of course I know that it’s not up to me to determine whether they meant it or not – that’s God’s job as he sees the heart and we can’t. But it seems as if there is no change in behavior or consciousness, that there is little evidence that they truly have been saved. Please help.
A. I assume you’re referring to the question entitled “OSAS that Isn’t Really OSAS”
In one sentence you say that isn’t up to you to determine if a person is saved or not, that’s God’s job as only He sees the heart. You’re absolutely right about that.
But in the next you say that if their behavior doesn’t change then there is little evidence that they’ve truly been saved. Evidence for whom? Does God need evidence to know if a person is saved? He knows the end from the beginning and that includes every sin of our lives, even the ones we haven’t committed yet. He took all of them to the cross, so they’re all paid for. (Col 2:13-15)
Then He sent the Holy Spirit as a counselor to advise us. He isn’t a commander who orders us, but a counselor who advises us. To varying degrees we all ignore the Holy Spirit’s advice and sin any way. None of this surprises the Lord because He already knew it was going to happen and took those sins to the cross with all the others.
As humans we look for evidence of a believer’s salvation. That makes us his or her judge and puts us in God’s place. When we do that, we’re telling God that it’s OK to judge us in the same way. In other words by how we behave, not by what we believe. In Luke 6:37 the Lord warns us against that, and tells us that the proper reaction to a brother’s sins is forgiveness.
Imagine what would happen if every time we sinned, every one who knew of it immediately forgave us and asked the Lord to do the same. Isn’t that what Jesus did from the cross?