OUT OF THE WOODS
by J.F.T. Woods
Q. If the "once saved, always saved" teaching is true, why does it say in Matthew 24:13 "...he who endures to the end shall be saved?"
A. The subject of the Olivet Discourse (Matthew 24-25) is the future "70th Week" of Daniel 9 and the return of Christ to reign as King over the earth. The subject is not personal salvation today. The "end" spoken of here is not the end of an individualís life but the end of an age, or epoch. The word "endure" (Greek, hupomeno), can as readily be translated "abide," "wait," or "survive." "Saved" is from sozo, "to deliver." The deliverance here is not from condemnation, but from death during or after the Tribulation. Messiah here promised believing Jews who are alive at His Return that He will be their deliverance.
Deliverance from all condemnation, or the salvation of sinners found in the Message of Christ Risen and Glorified (the Pauline Epistles), is always instantaneous, complete, and eternal. We cannot lose it by being "bad", because we didnít get it by being "good". God justifies the ungodly. A salvation that cannot be lost because wrought by God in grace is the greatest motivation the believer can have for knowing, loving, and serving God. Salvation is Eternal Security and Eternal Security is Salvation!
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