There is something basic and fundamental and foundational about my unrelenting desire to know I am secure in my relationship with Jesus. You could explain it as a part of my mental illness. You could reason that it is a flaw in my character. You could say it is from my ignorance of Scripture. Regardless of how you explain it, I seek to know, right now, what my eternal relationship with Jesus is.
The Wesleyan church says that I can be “saved,” i.e., have a relationship with Jesus right now, … and be able to reject Christ in the future and “not be able to enjoy heaven” and be separated from Jesus forever.
Therefore Wesleyan’s don’t know that they will spend eternity with Jesus because they don’t know if they will reject Jesus in the future. They only wish to make it to death or rapture as a Christian and then they will be secure.
That is not a rock I can build my life on.
I have been sealed by the Holy Spirit unto the day of redemption, who is a deposit guaranteeing what is to come.
I have Jesus’ nature. I am a new creation in Christ, the old has gone, the new keeps coming.
My life is hidden with God.
I am in Jesus, He is in me, we are in God. If I can reject Jesus, then Jesus can reject Jesus, because Jesus is a part of me. But, if Jesus cannot reject Jesus then I cannot reject Jesus, because I cannot reject myself.
I have eternal life. “Have” is past tense, I already have it. “Eternal” means it is without respect to time, that is, the time (past or future) doesn’t matter, I always have it.
If the Wesleyan Church is right, and I can “reject Jesus” after choosing to have a relationship with him I would expect the teaching of Scripture to be strong and clear and explicit in it’s warning of losing your salvation, in its description of the process of losing your salvation, and what to do to get right with Jesus after losing your salvation.
It is not.
I originally thought after being saved that I had to prove to Jesus that I could last and live for him until death or rapture. But this thought is actually a variation on “earning” my salvation – only after salvation. There are other problems. If God knows I will reject him later and be lost, and I love him now and he loves me and wants the best for me, he would take me right now right? If he doesn’t and I am lost he has lost a trophy of his grace unnecessarily.
If I have a belief I will look for things to support that belief and reject what does not support that belief. The Wesleyan Church might do this too. They may start with the teachings of John Wesley and then interpret the Bible through that lens; focusing only on what they think supports John Wesley’s teaching. But if we start with the Bible we find verses that suggest both interpretations: eternal security and losing salvation. This means it is a disputable matter.
My judgment is that Scriptural evidence most strongly supports the view that once we accept Jesus he makes his home in us forever, regardless of our behavior. Though Calvinism denies we have choice, John Wesley correctly supports the view that we have a choice in accepting Jesus or not; but inaccurately extends that concept to deny Jesus’ ability to keep us once he has won our hearts. He does not keep us against our will, he does not suppress our feelings. He disciplines us, he satisfies us, he draws us with cords of lovingkindness. If Jesus died for us when we were his enemies, what won’t he do for us now that we are his children?