What are the consequences of sin for a "saved" non-Catholic?

Questions in a thread under Apologetics never got answered, and I would love to hear from some of our non-Catholic Christian posters. I know the beliefs on this subject vary by denomination, so I’m open to all comers.

These questions apply to someone who is “saved” under your Christian denomination’s definition:

  1. Is all sin equal?

  2. What are the consequences of sin?

Thanks and God Bless,

Robert.

Previous post follows:

Hi Michael,

Earlier you said:
Quote:
No. All sins are not equal.
So in addition to jeffreedy789’s question,
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffreedy789
*michaelp - you seem to be avoiding my question, which is unfortunate, because i have a followup bit that i think will shed light on your dilemma.

if you would be so kind as to share what you believe a person must do to be saved, please?*

can you also explain what you believe are the consequences of sin? (If that’s your follow-up jr789, sorry for taking your thunder :o .)

A friend of mine who describes himself as a Fundamentalist (it’s not prejorative to all non-Catholics, just non-Fundamentalist non-Catholics :smiley: ) argued with me over lunch that all sin is equal in God’s eyes. He used the Sermon on the Mount as evidence (i.e. just looking at a woman with lust = adultery). He also told me that once saved you can’t lose salvation.

The way I see it, his belief was consistent…wrong, but consistent :wink: . Please give your thoughts.

God Bless, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year,

Robert.

Hi Rig, I believe sin is sin in God eyes. When Jesus died for us He bore all our sins. The consequences of unrepented sin is death[seperation from God.] God bless

Yes, all sin is the same–looking at God and all that He is and instead of choosing Him, turning to the world and the pleasures of it to satisfy us. This is the essence of all sin. And though in our eyes murder may not seem equal to lying, it is all the same in God’s eyes.
Romans 6:23 says that “the wages of sin is death”. Paul does not say, when do this, this or this you will die but this, this and this warrant only this lesser punishment. All sin is punished with death. If we choose to follow Jesus Christ, our sin has been covered by Jesus’ blood because “the free gift of God is eternal life in Jesus Christ our Lord” (rest of Romans 6:23).

So, if you are saved through your faith in Jesus Christ (i.e. repented and following Jesus Christ) and later murder someone, there is no consequence of death? Or do you have to repent again?

Although I have been saved, I continue to sin every day because I am living with an earthly body that does not desire God. Because of this, I need to continually seek forgiveness. I do not go on living in the same way as before, there would be no change there, instead I see the sin in my life and am so disgusted by it that I strive to eliminate from my life.

The same is true with murder because it is a sin, as with all other sins. If a person murders someone then seeks forgiveness, they will find it if they are truly repentant. because it is covered. However, if a person is claiming to be saved by Christ, you would have to question whether they were truly saved if they then went and murdered someone…but that’s a whole different thread…

I hope this actually makes sense. My brother just got out of the hospital and it’s been a rough couple of days…my brain is fried lol:sleep:

[quote=darwindidntknow]Although I have been saved, I continue to sin every day because I am living with an earthly body that does not desire God. Because of this, I need to continually seek forgiveness. I do not go on living in the same way as before, there would be no change there, instead I see the sin in my life and am so disgusted by it that I strive to eliminate from my life.

The same is true with murder because it is a sin, as with all other sins. If a person murders someone then seeks forgiveness, they will find it if they are truly repentant. because it is covered. However, if a person is claiming to be saved by Christ, you would have to question whether they were truly saved if they then went and murdered someone…but that’s a whole different thread…

I hope this actually makes sense. My brother just got out of the hospital and it’s been a rough couple of days…my brain is fried lol:sleep:
[/quote]

Thanks, DDK. If the threads are recent please point me to them. What I guess I never had explained to me sufficiently when I was a Protestant or as a Catholic is the consequence of not asking for forgiveness. I certainly understand the desire for forgiveness as a true follower of Christ, but what happens if forgiveness is not requested? What if the person’s heart changed? Is salvation then lost?

The other comment about whether a person claiming to be saved is truly saved is the reaction I usually receive. To me, this arguement is untenable. If that is true, the assurance of salvation non-Catholics believe they have is just as assured as we Catholics believe. For how do you know that you won’t change your heart and commit serious sin? How do you know that you are one of the truly saved? You don’t, unless you believe that there is no way that you could change.

I believe we have to “work out your salvation in fear and trembling” because of this.

I will add your brother to my prayer list for a further recovery from his hospital stay.

God Bless,

Robert.

Can anyone direct me to a thread that answers these questions. I know that all non-Catholics won’t agree with each other, but I am confused and would like to understand the viewpoints expressed by MichaelP.

Maybe my logic is flawed. If all sin is not equal, I’m assuming there would be greater consequences for greater sins. What consequences? If unrepented sin = death, then how can salvation be assured?

Is this covered by “Once saved always saved”? What should I use for search parameters to find these threads?

Thanks,

Robert.

I got into a debate with a Southern Baptist preacher concerning this very question.

His answer…Once you are “saved”, there is NO WAY it can be lost, No matter what you do.

To further explain his point, he said that God is all loving and our Heavenly Father, and as a Father, He would NEVER let any of His children be damned to hell.

Sorry it took so long to reply…
What I meant when I said it was a whole different thread was that it wasn’t on topic (and with my level of focus I could wander off to another topic very easily…:whacky: ) There is a thread in Non-Catholic Religions at the moment called “How are we saved”. I don’t know if that is what you are looking for or not because it does discuss the view that if you are saved you can go right back to sinning with no consequence.

You mentioned that you didn’t understand the consequence of not asking for forgiveness. If an unbeliever does not ask for forgiveness and dies, he will go to hell.
If someone who is forgiven and living a life sold out to God sins then they will almost certainly feel remorse and a sorrow for what they have done because they know it is defaming to their Lord. Even if they do not fall on their knees and verbally ask for forgiveness every time they sin, I would venture to say that because God sees what is inside He will forgive the person because He knows they are truly sorry for what they did. I would also say however, that most Christians will ask forgiveness for their sins.

I am unsure about the whole assurance of salvation stuff. I do believe that you cannot lose salvation. If your heart is truly changed, you would not want to go back to living in the hopeless world where nothing satisfies. John Piper has a whole section in his website dedicated to the question of assurance. desiringgod.org/library/topics/assurance/assurance_index.html
You may want to check it out. Sorry I can’t be more help…

Thanks for your prayers!
-Devyn

Devyn,

Thank you for your response. It is very helpful. I read *The Agonizing Problem of the Assurance of Salvation *from the link you provided, and I just wonder whether this is accepted by other non-Catholic Christians.

Second, faith is a warranted resting in this glorious gospel for our own salvation. I say “warranted resting” because there is an “unwarranted resting” - people who think they are saved who are not, because they have never come to see the glory of Christ as compellingly glorious. These people only believe on the basis of wanting rescue from harm, not because they see Christ as more beautiful and desirable than all else. But for those who “see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ” their resting is warranted.

To me, it begs the question: is my resting warranted? How would one actually know? If they aren’t sure, they have no assurance. If they are sure, are they “self-deceiving”?

If you look at the other “How are we saved?” thread, one of the posters called the final choice (Faith Alone) a caricature. I think it comes from the following logical progression:

  1. Saved by faith alone in Jesus Christ as my savior
  2. Salvation Assured (i.e. I can’t lose it)
  3. Grave Sin
  4. Could ask for forgiveness, but not required because salvation is assured.
  5. Could do good works (covenant faithfulness), but not required because salvation is assured.

Therefore, once I’m saved it really doesn’t matter if I sin, ask for forgiveness or do anything charitable. I know this disgusted an Evangelical poster, but I’ve yet to hear the flaw in the reasoning.

I mostly agree with you when you say:

If someone who is forgiven and living a life sold out to God sins then they will almost certainly feel remorse and a sorrow for what they have done because they know it is defaming to their Lord. Even if they do not fall on their knees and verbally ask for forgiveness every time they sin, I would venture to say that because God sees what is inside He will forgive the person because He knows they are truly sorry for what they did. I would also say however, that most Christians will ask forgiveness for their sins.

I am unsure about the whole assurance of salvation stuff. I do believe that you cannot lose salvation. If your heart is truly changed, you would not want to go back to living in the hopeless world where nothing satisfies.

My answers/questions to the bolded items, in order, are what if they don’t?, perhaps, what if they don’t?, I agree, but what if someone saved does go back?

God Bless,

Robert.

The question any Christian should ask about any doctrine is, ***what did the Apostles teach? ***

It is certain that the Apostles did not teach “Assurance of Salvation” or “Once Saved Always Saved” or “Perseverance of the Saints” or any other term by which this pernicious doctrine is known. The doctrine makes its first appearance in the historical record in the 16th century. It was a product of the Deformation – er, uh, the so-called Reformation.

  • Jesus founded the Catholic Church and taught the Apostles.
  • The Apostles were the leaders and teachers of the Catholic Church.
  • The Catholic Church, in turn, teaches what the Apostles taught.

The Catholic Church does not teach the “Assurance of Salvation.”

You’ll know you’re saved when you arrive in Purgatory or heaven, and not before. You can have assurance from day to day that you are in a state of grace and therefore will go to heaven, but you cannot have absolute assurance that you will be in a state of grace at the moment of your death. We cannot know the future. Falling from grace is possible.

JMJ Jay
Ex-Southern Baptist and ex-OSAS believer, ex-agnostic, ex-atheist, ecstatic to be Catholic!

Those who beleive that they are saved…and therefore do not ask for such things as forgivness, but do do most things the way God wanted…Could these people maybe go to pergatory?

No sin will separate us from the lamb except perhaps one depending on how you see it.

Jesus’ ability to forgive is greater than our ability to sin. So as Luther stated one could commit murder and rape a thousand times a day and still receive salvation.

What is the one sin that could separate us from the Lamb? Well Jesus desperately wants each of us to achieve salvation; however, if we deny him this will not happen. By denying Jesus we have cut off our means of being forgiven. Jesus will not save those who do not wish to be saved.

Someone stated that we should ask for forgiveness to be saved. This is true but you must understand from a Protestant point of view this is not our work but the work of the Holy Spirit in us. So, if one does not deny God then the Holy Spirit will lead them to ask for forgiveness. If one denies God they will not ask for forgiveness so they will not be forgiven - not so much because of a lack of asking but because of a lack of faith. It could be possible I suppose that one might ask for forgiveness out of their own doing but this act would be rejected just as Cain’s sacrifice was rejected because it was of his doing and not of the Holy Spirit.

2000 years ago a gift was given to us and by way of Baptism we open that gift. That gift is constantly before us and God never takes it away, we can turn our back on the gift but the minute we turn around God is still holding the gift in front of us forever and ever Amen.

[quote=fellicia]Those who beleive that they are saved…and therefore do not ask for such things as forgivness, but do do most things the way God wanted…Could these people maybe go to pergatory?
[/quote]

The Apostles were very clear. Unless one has true sorrow for sin and seeks forgiveness, he will not see God. Purgatory is the process of purification which prepares the soul to enter into God’s presence (heaven). If we’re not heaven-bound, there’s no preparation. Our sins have prepared us for hell (separation from God).

JMJ Jay

[quote=Shibboleth]No sin will separate us from the lamb except perhaps one depending on how you see it.

Jesus’ ability to forgive is greater than our ability to sin. So as Luther stated one could commit murder and rape a thousand times a day and still receive salvation.

What is the one sin that could separate us from the Lamb? Well Jesus desperately wants each of us to achieve salvation; however, if we deny him this will not happen. By denying Jesus we have cut off our means of being forgiven. Jesus will not save those who do not wish to be saved.

Someone stated that we should ask for forgiveness to be saved. This is true but you must understand from a Protestant point of view this is not our work but the work of the Holy Spirit in us. So, if one does not deny God then the Holy Spirit will lead them to ask for forgiveness. If one denies God they will not ask for forgiveness so they will not be forgiven - not so much because of a lack of asking but because of a lack of faith. It could be possible I suppose that one might ask for forgiveness out of their own doing but this act would be rejected just as Cain’s sacrifice was rejected because it was of his doing and not of the Holy Spirit.

2000 years ago a gift was given to us and by way of Baptism we open that gift. That gift is constantly before us and God never takes it away, we can turn our back on the gift but the minute we turn around God is still holding the gift in front of us forever and ever Amen.
[/quote]

Assurance of salvation was not taught by the Apostles. It was the 16th century invention of Martin Luther. If you want to bet your soul that Luther was right – and that 1500 years of Christian teaching by the Church founded by Christ that preceded him was wrong – so be it.

JMJ Jay

[quote=Katholikos]Assurance of salvation JMJ Jay
[/quote]

It is weird to see the correct words written on a Catholic Website. I am so used to seeing Once Saved Always Saved and the like.

Joint Doctrine of Justification
Assurance of Salvation
Catholics can share the concern of the Reformers to ground faith in the objective reality of Christ’s promise, to look away from one’s own experience, and to trust in Christ’s forgiving word alone (cf. Mt 16:19; 18:18). With the Second Vatican Council, Catholics state: to have faith is to entrust oneself totally to God,19 who liberates us from the darkness of sin and death and awakens us to eternal life.20 In this sense, one cannot believe in God and at the same time consider the divine promise untrustworthy. No one may doubt God’s mercy and Christ’s merit. Every person, however, may be concerned about his salvation when he looks upon his own weaknesses and shortcomings. Recognizing his own failures, however, the believer may yet be certain that God intends his salvation. [See Sources, section 4.6].

This article on the Joint Declaration is very helpful:

catholic.com/thisrock/1999/9911fea1.asp

After reading it, I had a great desire to reread the sections of the Catechism on Grace and Justification (1987-2029). These and another thread on the subject made me realize that I was lumping justification and salvation together. It also made me realize that we are a lot closer to some Protestant/non-Catholics than I thought.

God Bless,

Robert.

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