Are protestants held accountable for their sins?


#1

I had a conversation with a friend of mine and he told me that as long as you accept Jesus as your Lord and savior, then you are forgiven of any sin, past, present or future.

I asked him how are our future sins forgiven. He said because His blood was shed for all our sins.

I told him I don’t get it and he said that He (Jesus) is our sacrifice and no matter what we do we will be forgiven.

Now that would tell me that protestants are not accountable for their sins. Would that be fair to say? Is this a case of OSAS? I’ve also had this discussion with a Lutheren friend of mine. He said basically the same thing.

Please, no arguing just some help in understanding friends beliefs.


#2

It does sound like OSAS. There are many problems with the belief that all sins past, present, and future are simultaneously forgiven. The NT writers, including Paul, constantly warn their listeners against engaging in sin. They would not have repeated this warning over and over if future sins were already forgiven.

There are many interesting passages in scripture that would deny the idea. You might consider the following:

2 Peter 1:9
For anyone who lacks these things is short-sighted and blind, and is forgetful of the cleansing of past sins.

Peter’s statement says nothing about future sins being already forgiven, but instead suggests that only past sins have been forgiven and that a renewed sense of repentence is necessary.

If future sins were already forgiven we would not read the following by James:

James 5:19-20
My brethren, if any one among you wanders from the truth and some one brings him back, let him know that whoever brings back a sinner from the error of his way will save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins.

James 5:14-15
Is any among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord; and the prayer of faith will save the sick man, and the Lord will raise him up; and if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven.

There are other verses as well, but these are a start. I hope this helps.


#3

[quote=On My Way]Is this a case of OSAS?
[/quote]

Yes…and a very bad case indeed…Instruct your friend to take two aspirin…be sure and boil plenty of hot water, and have clean towels on hand, this could get messy…

next he is to get out his Bible and read

Matt 5:29

  1. If your right eye is your trouble, gough it out and throw it away! Better to loose part of your body than to have it all cast into Gehenna

  2. Again, if your right hand is your trouble, cut it off and throw it away! Better to loose part of your body than to have it all cast into Gehenna


#4

We all know that Luther, I bring him up because he started the reformation, threw out 7 book of the Bible. I’m also pretty sure that he also wanted to throw out the book of Esther, James and Revelations. I know what James had said and understand James, but how would I make them understand James, when the father of protestantism wanted to throw those books out also.

It seems to me that my friends feel like God is obligated to forgive them because His son (Jesus) died for our sins. Is it wrong for me to think like that.

I also feel that they want God to conform to them instead of them conforming to God. I just don’t get it. It’s like the Catholics who show up 15 minutes after mass started, but just in time for communion and then leave right after. I just don’t get it. It is never on my time it is always on His time, but thats just me.


#5

[quote=Pax]It does sound like OSAS. There are many problems with the belief that all sins past, present, and future are simultaneously forgiven. The NT writers, including Paul, constantly warn their listeners against engaging in sin. They would not have repeated this warning over and over if future sins were already forgiven.

[/quote]

Hi,

On my way, please don’t misinterpret your friends’ doctrinal belief about future sins being forgiven at the one point in time when he “accepts Christ” as being equal to having a nonchalant attitude towards sin in general. Like, it’s a blessing that many OSAS adherents are “better than their doctrine.” Even in the Reformed Pres. church, we (they) are critical of the statement “Once Saved Always Saved” because of the attitude it evokes, but it’s realized to be in line with basic Reformed Protestantism. However, the way it’s presented is generally way off the mark of the Presbyterian belief of “Perseverance of the Saints.”

I just wanted to point that out. My next post will perhaps, with what’s been said above, help you to understand what your friend might believe in regards to the issue of future sins.


#6

[quote=On my way]It seems to me that my friends feel like God is obligated to forgive them because His son (Jesus) died for our sins. Is it wrong for me to think like that.

I also feel that they want God to conform to them instead of them conforming to God. I just don’t get it. It’s like the Catholics who show up 15 minutes after mass started, but just in time for communion and then leave right after. I just don’t get it. It is never on my time it is always on His time, but thats just me.
[/quote]

It’s very presumptuous to think one can go on sinning and still be assured of heaven. It certainly is the easy way out. Maybe that’s why so many are attracted to it. :frowning:


#7

On My Way,

This may not apply to every specific nuance of your friend’s beliefs, but likely it will be close. This is from the “Westminster Confession of Faith” Chapter 11 Art. 5 on Justification:

God doth continue to forgive the sins of those that are justified: and, although they can never fall from the state of justification; yet they may, by their sins, fall under God’s fatherly displeasure, and not have the light of His countenance restored unto them, until they humble themselves, confess their sins, beg pardon, and renew their faith and repentance.

Some Scriptures quoted are the Lord’s Prayer “forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors” and of course I John 1:7 and 2:1, you know that, about “if we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins.”

It seems there’s a tension there about being “saved” and having, for a time, unforgiven sins. I never understood that, maybe I didn’t try hard enough to understand… anyways…

Also some Psalms are cited, like 89:31 and 51:7.

Likely your friend hasn’t thought it all through. He thinks what you believe is weird and blasphemous to God’s grace. But that doesn’t mean he isn’t highly thankful for his faith, he probably loves God very much and is very careful to not live a sinful life.

Verses you might keep in mind to consider are

Romans 8:1
John 10:27-29 (about nobody being able to snatch the sheep out of the Son’s or the Father’s hands)
I Corinthians 1:7-9 "sustain you to the end"
Ephesians 1:13,14
I Timothy 4:18

Man, if you can pro-actively set forth the Catholic view of Scriptures like those that show the confidence that people who live a grace-filled life can have in regards to their salvation, before he gets the chance to “use them on you” so to speak, you will be one step ahead and it will probably give him plenty to mull over. Used along with the verses cited above by other posters, it will show that you are honestly trying to deal with the whole scope of the issue, and not leave anything out.

-Rob


#8

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