I was speaking to a Southern Baptist friend earlier who believes in OSAS. I asked him “if you were saved and then later down the line murdered someone, would that be grounds for losing your salvation?” He replied that if you were truly saved in the first place, no, you would not lose your salvation because on the cross Jesus died for ALL of our sins. I arugued with him and told him that you would be living in mortal sin unless you truly were sorry and repented. Therefore, without repentance, you would go to hell. He said that it didn’t matter how badly you sinned (lying, stealing etc.) as long as you were “saved” it didn’t matter, and that all sins are “on the same level”. I was stumped as to how to respond to that! I am recently returning to the CC (the past 6 mos or so) and I would really appreciate some help with how to respond to that. Thanks in advance!
46 And if thy eye scandalize thee, pluck it out. It is better for thee with one eye to enter into the kingdom of God, than having two eyes to be cast into the hell of fire:
I’d ask him what Jesus meant in Mat. 24:13 & 25:31-46 where he says, “He who endures to the end will be saved.” What role would enduring to the end play in salvation if the person were saved as a teenager (for example)?
Then there is Paul who says:
“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that Day” (2 Tim. 4:7-8). Could there have been any other outcome if what your friend says is true? And if your friend is correct, then why did Paul even bother saying this?
I like this one from Paul as well, 1 Cor. 9:27 -
“I pummel my body and subdue it, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified.” Disqualified from what? If he’s already saved, surely he is not suggesting that he can loose his salvation.
Then there’s the classic response from Paul where he says we are to work out our salvation with fear and trembling (Phil 2:12). What’s there to work out? Either you’re saved or your not. According to your friend, there is no need to work anything out since salvation cannot be lost.
This teaching goes back to Luther himself. I believe that it was one of the teachings he put for while an Augustinian priest. He was warned many times, but refused to reign in his heresy. He was finally excomunicated for it. And that led to his “reformation.” Nice thought, isn’t it?
Because he is looking at salvation as a ‘one time crisis event’ that is past, not a present or future state. That is a concept found NOWHERE in scripture or in Church history. It is ‘I was saved, I am being saved, I hope to be saved’. Not ‘I said the sinner’s prayer and now have my lifeboat out of Hell’.
Thats a new argument to me. Whenever I asked this question the answer I got was, “No, if you were truly saved you would never have murdered someone, so by murdering someone you show that you were never really saved.”
This argument opens up a whole other can of worms showing that some who believe in “Once Saved Always Saved” have no read assurance of it.
Yes, that is what many fundamentalists said of me when I returned to the Catholic Church. OSAS becomes NSITFP, never saved in the first place. Its an illogical merry-go-round.
I grew up in the SB church and that was the normal response I heard. I taught Adult Sunday School for years. I converted to RC Easter 2006.
The assurance question is the question I had the most fundamental problem with OSAS. How can I know that I am saved? How do I know that warm fuzzy feeling I have while I am walking down the aisle to 9 stanzas of “Just as I am” is a real conversion? Even if I tear up, do the white knuckle fist clench or any other manuveur SB preachers describe, HOW CAN I KNOW FOR SURE THAT MY CONVERSION IS REAL?
Some would say just trust God. Assurance comes from knowing and doing the will of God. But what if I don’t know or I just don’t do it?
They would say just pray about it? How do I know when I have prayed enough? You get that same warm feeling I don’t know if it was real when I walked down the aisle? I’m back in the same position, not knowing.
“By their fruits you shall know them” was another canned answer. That usually was used in connection with “fundraisers”. But if I go on sinning even though I know I love God and I am weak am I going to Hell?
One of the reasons I converted was to know. I know that I am but filthy rags, but I also know where I can get clean: through the Sacraments. I know I can go to confess my sins and take the Eucharist and God does forgive me. No question about it.
Another stumbling block for the SBer is mortal/veniel sin levels. Remember also that little sins and big sins DO matter. But if you ask them if they have sinned today they almost certainly should say yes unless they are lying. Then you ask: How big does a sin have to be to show you aren’t saved? Lying is the favorite of mine for the Apostle Paul says liars are on the same level as murderers and adulterers. Lies are sins, whether they are the little white lie or not.
Tell your SB friend she can know. Get her the Pillar of Fire booklet here on this website and give it to her. Also look under the apologetics section here about assurance. And remember, you might just be planting seeds. God is the one that will bring her conversion about in His time.
Thank you so much for all of your replies! Very helpful
That’s the impression I got up until yesterday too! That’s why it really stumped me!
Also, in the conversation he was talking about how there are no good Baptist churches around here, they are all very different from the one he was raised in (his father WAS a Southern Baptist minister in Tennessee). I’m kicking myself now, I should’ve responded to that “How sad! I’m so thankful that I can go anywhere and find a Catholic Church that teaches exactly the same thing that mine does!!” It must get really confusing when you can’t find a church, especially in the same denomination you grew up in, that has the same belief system that you were taught. I’m soooo glad I’m Catholic!!! Whew! If I was protestant, I’d be afraid to move or go on vacation out of fear that I might not be able to find a place of worship that had the same belief system that I was raised with!!!
Sorry, got a bit off topic lol
And that’s the very best they can do. OSAS is really OSIYWTSITFPAS. Once saved, if you were truly saved in the first place, always saved.
and “if you were saved in the first place” actually is the key reason (for me) why OSAS is false…
Scripture says we can test and know if we are saved…
So, if someone tested and proved true, only to later test false…
This means they CAN’T test to see…
If your response is well… they weren’t true Christians so they couldnt test…
then this still violates scripture because scripture says you CAN test…
If you say “well, it is impossible to once test true and then test false” is also untrue because there are countless people the do on a daily basis
So… You have a situation…
Either Scripture is true…
Or OSAS is true…
But they cant both be true because scripture says you can test, but OSAS is forced to say you can’t test…
As a Protestent, especially in the SB Church, you are pretty much on your own as a teacher/preacher. Yeah, there are study guides / sunday school periodicals, but they are so dumbed down, it’s like reading a People magazine. The articles written by the scholars are written at very low levels just to keep the interest. So a lot of well meaning teachers and preachers write their own material, sometimes using the suggested lesson, sometimes not. Most of the time I think it is just a social gathering, not bible study.
When I was in RCIA I was picked on alot by the Priest and his helpers, just because they knew I didn’t mind and I had specific insight into how fundamental evangelicals might approach subjects. I remember on more than one occassion saying that John 6 was completely “glossed over” (That’s the chapter on the Eucharist), Luke 1 almost completely avoided (That’s Mary’s story) and some books completely avoided James, Hebrews, come to mind.
I should remind everyone that the Protestents did take books out of their Bible in order to make their Bible work. And as the next to last verse in the last book of the Bible says:
19 And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from these things that are written in this book.
That reason alone is enough to convince some people if explained properly. If you knew you were working with a faulty incomplete Bible why would want to be a Protestent?
Catholics go through the Whole Bible in about 3 years. We all use the same readings and all have the same liturgy and all have the same Sacraments and all have the same leader. We have 2000 years of history and unbroken succession.
If I wanted to go out and start a church tommorrow and call myself a Bishop I could. But would you trust your salvation to me? Alot of people do that everyday and it is sad. A magnetic personality is going to send alot of people to Hell and that’s where we come in. We know the truth and we need to tell it.