Why won’t Wesleyans talk about this with me?

Can I be sure that I am going to heaven no matter what?

Because my past actions have shown me that I am completely unreliable and if my future is in my hands I will surely fail, I can only trust Jesus to save me from myself.

Can I reject Jesus and go to hell?

Can I even reject Jesus in the first place?

What is going on then with Christians who turn away from following Jesus?

Let’s look at some relevent Scripture:

Romans 7:20 (NASB95)
20But if I am doing the very thing I do not want, I am no longer the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me. (underline mine)

Romans 8:1–2 (NASB95)
1Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.
2For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death. (underline mine)

So can I reject Jesus and go to hell?

If I “reject Jesus” it is no longer I who am doing it but sin living in me. Therefore I am not condemned because I was – at conversion, am now, and will be forever – in Jesus. (He said He will never leave me). For the law of the Spirit of life of Jesus (unmerited favor) has set me free from the law of sin and death.

Can I even reject Jesus in the first place?

Again, let’s look at relevant Scripture:

Ephesians 6:24 (NASB95)
24Grace be with all those who love our Lord Jesus Christ with incorruptible love. (underline mine)

The original Greek for “incorruptible” is:

  1. ἀφθαρσία aphtharsia, af-thar-see´-ah; from 862; incorruptibility; gen. unending existence; (fig.) genuineness:—immortality, incorruption, sincerity.

Strong, J. (2009). A Concise Dictionary of the Words in the Greek Testament and The Hebrew Bible (Vol. 1, p. 17). Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.

So, those who love Jesus love Him with pure, unending love.

But, the Wesleyans say: You still have choice, you still CAN reject Jesus.

So, the Wesleyans are saying: I can experience Jesus’ unconditional love, I can love Him with pure, unending love, and I can reject Jesus at the same time? It may be theoretically possible, but not reasonably chosen.

What is going on then with Christians who turn away from following Jesus?

Consider the following Scripture:

1 John 2:19 (NASB95)
19They went out from us, but they were not really of us; for if they had been of us, they would have remained with us; but they went out, so that it would be shown that they all are not of us.

Wolves in sheep’s clothing look like sheep. They may sound like sheep. They may even believe they are sheep.

I did.

I called myself a Christian when I was the farthest from being a Christian. I talked the talk, or thought I did. But when God told me I was a sinner, I denied it. He wasn’t talking about your everyday church-going sinner. He was saying I was evil . . . just as evil as the devil. I rejected that and told Him. And I left the church . . . even though I was never “in the church.” (never in Jesus)

Opinion:

Why do Wesleyans teach if you sin and don’t repent, or if you reject Christ, you will go to hell?

I believe it was started as a scare tactic because the truth of Romans and the unlimited grace of God opens up the possibility of unrestrained sin or license to sin. But when grace was offered, more grace was the solution, not hell or punishment.

Romans 2:4 (NASB95)
4Or do you think lightly of the riches of His kindness and tolerance and patience, not knowing that the kindness of God leads you to repentance? (underline mine)

God gave me things I liked to get my attention and move me to repentance. He also gave me ten years of horrific mental illness to humble me to move me to repentance. I count them both gifts from him, the latter being what I would not want to repeat. But I treasure what He did through it. It was most definitely a kindness.

Conclusion:

Once we trust Jesus to save us we are one with Him forever. We can stop worrying about performance based acceptance and get on with allowing Jesus to love others through us for no other reason than . . . we love Jesus and we love others (not because we are threatened with hell).

Thinking right in a culture whose Mind’s Left

Copyright by James Bruce McNaughton

I have internet experience with “those whose Mind’s Left.”

Do some claim the protection of being a Platform but want to control content like Publishers?

“Platforms” are given legal protection from what is written in them. This is what some claim to be. In exchange for this protection they give up the right to censor what they don’t agree with. They become a public forum.

“Publishers” have control of what will be written in them. But they give up legal protection from damage for what they say.

Any thinking person can recognize that content (memes, podcasts, etc.) that fails “fact checking” or “community standards” can be statements that those who are afraid of the truth want to censor. The truth proves them wrong, they have no valid counter-arguments and they politically don’t want to admit that. So they exert their brief (that is, until a fair platform reaches enough people) power to censor, under the guise they are “protecting” us. (Oh yes, they may have made token attempts at fairness, I have seen one “fact-check” that was not against conservative thought. I haven’t seen more).

I have personal interaction with “those whose Mind’s Left.”

I’ve been accused of being a Conspiracy Theorist. I was talking about Revelation in the Bible and a Twenty-Something asked me if I believed this conspiracy theory. I felt I was instantly discredited and dismissed merely by their question and the way they said it. I was also shocked at the Bible being called a conspiracy theory.

I also asked this Twenty-Something if the statement:

“There is no Absolute Truth.”

is a true statement.

He said, “Sometimes.”

I had never heard such an illogical statement from someone.

(“There is no Absolute Truth” is an Absolute Truth statement itself and therefore self-contradictory, it is never true; but “those whose Mind’s Left” believe it is true).

This is what we are dealing with. Not all Twenty-Somethings are “those whose Mind’s Left.” Not all “those whose Mind’s Left” are Twenty-Somethings. But what we are dealing with are people who do not think logically, rationally or reasonably. They have been taught in college that truth doesn’t exist, they have believed this lie as true (ironic) and their actions have followed this belief.

What can we do?

Pray. To Jesus. And humbly ask Him to intervene. He is on the side of Truth, and Grace, and people. All people. Including “those whose Mind’s Left.” Including you.

By responding to this you are affirming “Freedom of Speech” is a right for yourself and all others.

He sought me and He bought me . . .

When I denied I was a sinner Jesus told me He would humble me for ten years. I originally interpreted Him as saying He would drag my “good name” through the mud for that time. (You can see my pride). I later tried to get saved before the ten years were finished and I couldn’t. God did not offer me His Holy Spirit and without Him I couldn’t get saved. God kept to His word that it would be ten years. I needed the full time though, because even after ten years of horrible mental illness I barely humbled myself enough to accept Jesus. (I was still full of pride). I wouldn’t kneel at the side of my bed when I accepted Him. I wouldn’t check the date so I would be able to tell people when I got saved. Because I didn’t feel different after accepting Jesus I yelled at Him in my mind, “I did what You asked. If I’m not saved, it’s Your fault.” And I went to sleep.

Jesus was and is remarkably humble and patient. He didn’t count my sins against me as I accepted Him. He humbled Himself and got down to where I was and loved the unlovely. Maybe that’s why I love Him so much. And why I want everyone who is interested to have the chance to hear how much Jesus loves them.

There is another reason why I love Him so much. And mental illness isn’t necessary. Jesus said, “For this reason I say to you, her sins, which are many, have been forgiven, for she loved much; but he who is forgiven little, loves little.” Luke 7:47 (NASB95). If you want to love Jesus much then you need to be forgiven much. And to be forgiven much you have to own your own depravity to God. Mine was total; for apart from Jesus I was completely evil. How do I know? Jesus used mental illness to show me that the “good name” I was so concerned about was only imaginary, only in my perception, driven by my pride. When the “good name” was gone I deliberately chose evil, because I didn’t have any reason not to choose evil anymore. And my choices revealed who I really was, especially to myself.

So what is different now that I’m saved? Pastor Andrew Farley talks about how, when we accept Jesus, He gives us a new heart, a heart that is one with Him and the Father and the Holy Spirit. Jesus said, “In that day you will know that I am in My Father, and you in Me, and I in you.” John 14:20 (NASB95). In contrast to our first heart of stone, this new heart of flesh and new spirit loves God and wants to please Him (see Ezekiel 36:26). I am one with Jesus and my heart’s desire is Him. I am miserable when I sin. As Paul wrote, I died to sin, how can I live in it any longer?

But you protest “Jim your heart still sins!” No, not me or my heart. As Paul revealed in Romans 7:20: “But if I am doing the very thing I do not want, I am no longer the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me.” (NASB95) Paul continues in Romans 8:1-2: “Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death.”(NASB95)

I am free from the law of sin and death. I am not condemned. But how do I sin less? I must learn God’s will (by reading the Bible) and do it. That will cause me to: ” . . . be transformed by the renewing of [my] mind, so that [I] may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.” Paul the Apostle, Romans 12:2b (NASB95).

Jesus initiated loving me by invading my life, humbling me, humbling Himself in order to offer me Himself, and giving me a clean heart. And He is literally changing my mind daily as I read the Bible and obey Him.

Disclaimer: I have no delusions that I am perfect and do not sin (even though it is not I but sin living in me). Talking to my family or co-workers will reveal my mind still needs much more renewing. But I do love Jesus, and people, and when I realize I have failed I grieve. I thank God for His forgiveness, I want to learn from my failure, I apologize to those I hurt (though not nearly enough), and I take Jesus’ hand and we press on with Him taking the lead.