A serious question


I have a simple but serious question for both Protestants and Catholics:

Does a Christian have to obey God to go to heaven?






In order to get to Sacramento, I would have to drive certain roads and take certain exits.

If I was stubborn and said “I’m going to take whatever roads I want, and the Map can go stuff itself” I am going to end up somwhere very different.

In order to obtain Heaven we have to follow the guides God has given us, yes. There are only two destinations in the afterlife. Christ is the only One with directions to Heaven, and only by following them will we end up there. If we follow different directions well, we will end up somewhere very different.


While the obvious answer is “Yes”, I would like to know the question behind this question.

First we know the answer is yes because when we disobey God, it is a form of rebellion. When some of the angels in Heaven rebelled, God cast them out of Heaven. Thus we can see that God does not permit rebels to be with Him in Heaven.

But tell me, please, what is the motive for this question? What are you looking for?


I guess so if you believe keeping the two Greatest Commandments fall under obeying God.




I believe a baptized infant is a Christian incapable of obedience. I also believe that if that infant died before the age of reason that he would go to Heaven. So, strictly speaking, not all Christians must obey God to go to Heaven.
In the case of adults, the answer is that yes they must obey God to go to Heaven. That obedience need not be perfect, but they must obey God at least imperfectly.


Sin separates us from God by wounding our souls and making doing good more difficult. Severe sin, or mortal sin, separates us from God with no hope for salvation if we do not repent from it. The sacrament of reconcilliation gives us the opportunity to restore or bring us back into God’s grace.

For Protestants, like I used to practice, ALL sin separates us from God and we need to ask Him for forgiveness and change our ways.


The answer is yes.

God told us in His Word what we must do to go to Heaven and that is what we must obey:

Act 16:30 "Sirs, what must I do to be saved?

They replied, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved"

Not may be saved. Will be saved.

Christ confirmed this:

Jhn 6:29 "Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He sent.”

Faith is the height of obedience, because without faith, it is impossible to please God.


Yes -

Simply put, Christ said if we love Him, we should obey the Ten Commandments, and love our neighbor.


A Christian can disobey God by committing venial sins and still go to heaven but he will not go to heaven if he disobeys God by committing mortal sins and remains unrepentant til death.


Good point. I have been thinking about this question and realize that it is inadequate and too vague. I don’t think a “yes” or a “no” answer suffices to answer it for reasons I wouldn’t want to express at this point.

So I am amending my OP:

OK, here’s the new question. I am a 40, a 20, an 80-year-old man or woman from the U.S. or Russia or Zimbabwe or China or whatever. I have just been transformed by God from a state of alienation from Him to a state of friendship with Him, from a state of sin to a state of grace. If I am a Protestant I have just accepted Christ as “my personal Lord and Savior” and been baptized. If I am Catholic I have confimed and professed the same and have been baptized, confirmed, and have received the Holy Eucharist. So there I am. Good for me, all Glory to God. Now the question is, what must I then do (if anything) to get to heaven from then on, that is, from that point until I die? What (if anything) could preclude me from entering heaven? If you believe in OSAS, please indicate so, if you don’t mind. I personally am particularly interested in your responses because, I have to admit, I don’t see the reasoning behind this belief or how it can be justified from Scripture. God bless you all.


James has been in the readings this week.
i recommend reading James, its a short and to the point book.
the do’s and don’t’s of a good christian life.


There is always a tension between obedience and grace. It’s the tension between the side of Christian life S. Paul writes about in Romans, and the side that S. James writes about, though really it is one and the same.

We must obey, what must we obey, the command to have faith, if we have faith we will obey, if we don’t have faith, we won’t obey because why would we? If we obey, God’s grace will help us to believe, but we can only obey if we first believe, and we can only believe through God’s grace, so God is always the one who takes the initiative to save us, not our works. So we don’t do it by ourselves, but with the help of God’s grace.

People who believe in OSAS, as I understand it, don’t believe that we can do whatever we like once we’re baptised, but rather that if we return to disobedience after baptism and don’t repent, then we didn’t really repent in the first place.

In a way, it’s not that different from what Catholics believe, except that we understand that conversion, the process of learning to live by perfect faith, a faith that always obeys God because it always believes and trusts in Him, is an ongoing struggle, a lifelong struggle, and sometimes we’ll be succeeding by God’s grace, and other times we’ll be failing by our own disobedience.

You could say that Catholics view salvation from the human standpoint, inside time, here and now, while OSAS Protestants view salvation from the standpoint of eternity, where our final destination is, but we really both agree that we need to obey God to be saved, and that to obey God is impossible without faith, and faith impossible without God’s grace.


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