Just Because you have Been Baptized in Water and the Holy Spirit Does Not Mean you will Make it to Heaven!!
The Fact that you have Walked with Christ and God’s People does not ensure your salvation!
Dearly Beloved, the Bible says: “He who endures to the end shall be saved.” Matthew 24:13. Jesus never promised eternal life to those who “once believed”. It is only promised to those who [present tense] believe, or keep on believing.
Some of us have been so indoctrinated by eternal security teachers and calvinists in our formative spiritual years, that it is very hard to let the Scriptures speak plainly to our hearts on the issue of the absolute need for faithfulness and endurance in way of God.
Concerning sin, Satan still says to believers, as he said to Eve: “You will not surely die!”
But Paul, inspired by the Holy Spirit said: “For if you live according to the flesh [sinful nature] you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.” (Romans 8:13).
Spiritual death is still possible for the believer in Christ, who CHOOSES to set his mind on what the sinful nature desires, and REFUSES to set his mind on what the Spirit of God wants.
We need to be very careful then, what we give our attention to in our lives. We need to be careful about what we allow ourselves to watch on TV (if we are foolhardy enough to still watch it after all the evil the programmers of TV have fed us). We need to be careful about what keywords we type into search engines. Listen to what Paul said:
“Moreover, brethen, I do not want you to be unaware that all our fathers were under the cloud and passed through the sea,
all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea” (1 Corinthians 10:1-2)
meaning: they all had the experiences which correspond today to Baptism in Water and Baptism in the Holy Spirit. They had already applied the Blood of the Lamb to their lives, left Egypt (the world), and been separated from Pharaoh (the devil) by means of these experiences. Further:
“all ate the same spiritual food” (v3)
(They partook of the teaching of the Word of God)
“and all drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them, and that Rock was Christ.” (v4)
(Meaning they all had the O.T. equivalent of drinking of the Holy Spirit on a regular basis, enjoying Christ’s refreshing life giving touch, and so on).
“BUT WITH MOST OF THEM GOD WAS NOT WELL PLEASED, for their bodies were scattered in the wilderness” (v5)
You can have all the above experiences in the New Covenant, and still in the end God may NOT be pleased with you. You might just die spiritually in the wilderness, if you make the same kind of mistakes that the Israelites made in the wilderness, which Paul goes on to list. This is a NEW TESTAMENT WARNING and WE are the FOOLS and LOSERS if we disregard this warning by some principle of “doctrinal soundness” which we think excuses us or exempts us from the dangers referred to in this passgae. This is true for you and for me if any of us should disregard God’s Warnings.
And what are God’s warnings?
1. Do not desire evil things. (vs 6)
2. Do not become an idolater. (vs 7)
3. Do not be sexually immoral in any way. (vs 8)
4. Do not tempt Christ. (vs 9)
5. Do not complain against God. (vs 10)
God literally killed his own people in the desert for doing these things, and it is possible for those of us who embrace any of these modes of being to SPIRITUALLY DIE, to BE LOST, and to PERISH IN OUR SINS and have to endure the unbearable fires of hell forever. Yes folks, it is possible. And for this reason, we ought to fear (see also Matthew 10:28; Philippians 2:13; 1 Peter 1:17).
Let’s look at these in more detail and some of the modern applications we could make.
1. Do not desire evil things. Some of the books people read create a desire for evil things. Some of the computer games that people play today are very seductive and they do the same thing. They create absorbing occult fantasies in people’s minds that consume a large portion of their lives. I think of games like “World of Warcraft” in which you get to develop an imaginary player in a world of magic and violence. It is easy for people to DESIRE such evil things. And some grown men have even given up on their marriages and families to pursue them. Naturally, the pursuit of God, the love for God falls victim to such evil desires before the family does. I used to play Dungeons and Dragons myself as a teenager and I can tell you that I needed DELIVERANCE from all kinds of evil spirits after I came to Christ because of my addiction to that game – which was fairly primitive compared to the absorbing 3D colour occult games which are now sold online and throughout the world.
2. Do not become an idolater. As it is written, says Paul, “The people sat down to eat and drink and rose up to play” (1 Corinthians 10:7)
In some cases the Holy Spirit calls eating and drinking IDOLATRY. Just basically going out to please your flesh, to have fun, and all that, CAN BE IDOLATRY. This is not true in all cases of eating and drinking, or playing games – but there is always that possibility. When the people of God don’t want to deal with a holy, fiery God but instead prefer amusements and distractions and pleasing their flesh – well it shows something is amiss with our priorities.
3. Do not commit sexual immorality . Its always worst when sexual immorality takes the form of participating in actual physical sexual acts with someone you are not married to. Such sins can destroy families or marr people for life. But you can be sexually immoral at heart by taking your fill of internet pornography, and indulging in masturbation, too. Jesus indicated that gazing on a woman to lust for her was adultery as far as God is concerned (Matthew 5:28). And just to make it super clear, he instructed us to deal with this sin ever so severely if we want to avoid the fires of hell (Matthew 5:29,30). We need to pursue purity of heart if we wish to see God. Without holiness no one shall see the LORD (in salvation). (Hebrews 12:14). We are not to live in the passion of lust, like the Gentiles who do not know God. Whoever rejects the teaching about sexual purity rejects not man, but God, who gives us the Holy Spirit. (1 Thessalonians 4:5, 8). I realise this teaching is totally at odds with the standards of the world – but then again, according to the gospel, the whole world lies in the power of the evil one and stands condemned, in desperate need of a Savior.
4. Do not Tempt Christ
David Wilkerson had this to say about the meaning of this:
What does Paul mean here when he speaks of “tempting Christ”? Simply put, tempting the Lord means putting him to a test. We tempt him whenever we ask, “Just how merciful will God be to me if I move forward into this sin? How long can I indulge my sin before his anger is stirred? I know God is merciful and this is an era of grace, with no condemnation toward sinners. How could he possibly judge me, when I’m his child?” See this page.
5. Do not Complain Against God
A sure recipe for unhappiness and trouble is to complain against God. I don’t think God ever rewards complaining. He usually punishes it. In the case of the Israelites, they were “destroyed by the destroyer”.
Let’s remember that we are on this earth as tenants, and we are freely enjoying so many of God’s gifts. If we are in a battle with Satan and his demons, let us not assign God the blame for our troubles. We are in the business of proving our love and loyalty to God. Complaining against God is not the way to go about doing that.
Dear fellow believer, I hope you will take these warnings to heart, and humble yourself before God wherever or however necessary. We need to fear God and we need to take warning from the example of God’s own chosen people, the Israelites, whom God did so much for. If God could destroy some of them in His righteous anger, it can happen to us also, if we forsake the Lord in order to pursue our own unrighteous desires. If you have truly been bought with a price, if you are truly “not your own” as the Bible says concerning Christians, then act like it. Confess to God all your sins and ask Him to create in you a clean heart, and renew a right spirit within you. Determine to live NOT for what you may think will make you happy in this life, but for what is RIGHT, and for what will have eternal value for you in the Life to Come. Amen.