WHY I HATE THE DOCTRINE OF ETERNAL SALVATION (DOCTRINAL CONFUSION-Part 7)
For some weeks now, we have been given narrative report of the defense of the doctrine of eternal salvation. These reports are as a result of an encounter of a man who expressed so much hatred for the doctrine of eternal salvation. In our previous report, we explained 1 John 1: 9 as a salvation scripture for the unsaved. If the unsaved acknowledges his sinful state and expresses trust or faith in the faithfulness of Jesus to forgive and cleanse him from all sins, he shall be saved from sin and all unrighteousness.
In this part 7, we shall address another scripture raised during our discussion. In 2Peter 2:20-22, "For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning. For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them.
But it is happened unto them according to the true proverb, The dog is turned to his own vomit again; and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire".
To him, the above scripture is an obvious evidence that a person once saved can get entangled and overcome by sin and lose his salvation and enter into a worse state than he was before he became saved. One major error many people make in bible interpretation is picking out a portion of scripture out of context to make it say what it does not mean without considering the whole chapter or book. To understand any content of scripture in context, the pretext and the post text must be understood.
We shall therefore look at the whole content in chapter two. Chapter 2 verses 1-3 But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of. And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not.
Here Peter was reminding them that there were false prophets among the Old Testament prophets and there are still false prophets or teachers among them, these false prophets even deny the Lord. This shows that these false teachers were not believers. Let us look at verses 4 upwards. Verse 4, Peter mentioned angels that sinned. Verse 5, Peter gave them the example of ungodly and unrighteous in the time of Noah.
Verses 6- 7, Peter mentioned the example of the ungodly or unrighteous in the time of Lot. Verse 14, Peter called these people cursed children. Verse 15- 16, Peter used the example of Baalam son of Bosor. All the examples given above are the unbelieving who heard the gospel and turned away from it. It is now evident that the people referred to in verse 20 “they” are these false prophets or teachers who were not believers.
Peter was talking to the believers about these unbelieving prophets. Another proof that Peter was referring to unbelievers can be found in verse 22, calling them dogs and in verse 12 calling them brute beast and also in verse 14 Peter calling them cursed children. None of these descriptions ever referred to believers in scriptures or by Peter. Now let’s look at the verses 20- 23 again:
“For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning. For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them.
But it is happened unto them according to the true proverb, The dog is turned to his own vomit again; and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire.”.
What is the knowledge of the truth here? This is not referring to salvation. It refers to the knowledge of the truth of Christ these false teachers have come to know but refuse to believe or teach. These teachers are called false because though they have been informed and made to know the truth, they deliberately reject it and choose to teach what is falsehood. Probably teaching what will profit them carnally.
Peter said, it would have been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness and turned away from it. This is not about “backsliding” believers but it is about the false teachers who have known the way of righteousness and deliberately turn away from it. They have not believed the truth they know.
The book of Hebrews gives record of how the Jews though knew the truth but rejected it through unbelief and for that matter could not enter God’s rest.
Hebrews 3:12-19 Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God. But exhort one another daily, while it is called Today; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence stedfast unto the end; While it is said, Today if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts, as in the provocation.
For some, when they had heard, did provoke: howbeit not all that came out of Egypt by Moses. But with whom was he grieved forty years? was it not with them that had sinned, whose carcases fell in the wilderness? And to whom sware he that they should not enter into his rest, but to them that believed not? So, we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief.
Hebrews 4: 6 Seeing therefore it remaineth that some must enter therein, and they to whom it was first preached entered not in because of unbelief: It is therefore possible for somebody to have knowledge of the way of righteousness, know the truth about salvation and still not be saved. Salvation is by faith in the gospel. Comparatively, Peter said such a person is in a worse state. Deliberately rejecting the truth being told you and going about teaching falsehood is worse.
2 Peter 2: 20- 22, therefore is not about the losing of salvation by believers. The people Peter was referring to were unbelievers who have come to know the truth but deliberately refused to believe and rather go about teaching falsehood.
# Disseminating the truth
# Bringing freedom
# Perfecting the saints