If you deny Unconditional Grace and accept that the Bible really does have conditions, such as the 7 (or 10) conditions listed on this website, some Christians might tell you that’s wrong because it means you are trying to “earn” your salvation.
Of course, as explained in the previous article, even trying to earn your salvation (which you cannot do) is not going to have any detrimental impact but only a positive impact on your eternal salvation, assuming you are already saved. It would be perfectly fine even if it’s wrong; you still go to heaven as long as you accepted Christ once. However, if you’re wrong and there are conditions, then you are likely headed to hell.
However, setting that aside for now since we discussed that in the previous article, let’s address a critical factor: Is achieving certain conditions really considered “earning salvation”? Do you get saved by your merit?
No. You are not earning salvation by following the conditions of salvation laid out in the Bible.
“How is that? It sounds like you’re saying we need to earn salvation”, you ask? First let’s mention that you have been brainwashed into a doctrine by the corrupt Calvinistic church. So it might be hard to wrap your head around at first because your beliefs are so entrenched (unless perhaps you are a new Christian).
In church they tell you over and over, “you can’t earn salvation” (true), “not by works” (the Bible does say this), and most importantly, “Jesus is the only way”, which is absolutely supported by the Bible.
Do biblically laid-out requirements for salvation deny the fact that Jesus is the only way? No, it doesn’t. Jesus still really is the only way.
“So, why do you have to do ‘works’, to achieve salvation, if you don’t get to heaven by works?” You might ask.
Consider this. A Buddhist monk denies himself and all worldly pleasures. By all meanings of the word, he lives as close to a perfect life as humanly possible, in total isolation free from all worldly temptations and spends all his time in spiritual worship.
Certainly, even if not 100% perfect like Jesus, this Buddhist monk achieves all conditions of salvation (except #7 which is believing in Jesus) – in fact the Buddhist monk does not break anything that the Bible says is wrong or evil (besides idolatry, but that is another topic). Does this Buddhist monk go to heaven? No!
Why not? This Buddhist monk met all the conditions! Actually, the Buddhist monk neglected to see this truth: the only way is through Jesus. The Buddhist monk did not live a perfect life in God’s eyes because all his spiritual worship was not to the One True Lord God of heaven, and because he did not accept Jesus as Lord. You can’t do enough good works in your whole life to “earn” salvation apart from Jesus.
Now, consider a Christian who has accepted Jesus. He lives a life which adheres to the same level of moral goodness as the monk, and this includes adhering to the conditions of salvation. Does this Christian go to heaven? Yes!
Both the Buddhist monk (believable) and the Christian in this case (probably unlikely) adhered to the same standards of morality. However, the Buddhist monk went to hell, while the Christian went to heaven.
What is the difference between the two? Jesus. Jesus is the only way.
Jesus being the only way does not exclude moral obligations in order to attain salvation however. While I truly believe that there are at least conditions of salvation, this is not “earning” salvation, because apart from Jesus the works are meaningless.
You cannot earn your way to heaven. However, you can exclude yourself from the Lamb’s Book of Life (the book God has that lists everyone eligible for heaven), by failing to adhere to the conditions of salvation listed in the Bible.
It is not that these conditions are helping you “earn” your way to heaven – rather, what you are doing by adhering to these conditions is preventing you from being excluded from heaven.
God chose a few, and not all of these people will get to heaven. Not only that, but according to Jesus, only a “few” of even the people God called will get to heaven. Why? Because those people, even after accepting Jesus, did not adhere to the moral standards required by God and given to us in the Bible.
It’s not that they did not “earn” their way to heaven. Rather, it is that by living an immoral life, they have lost their opportunity to receive the gift of God. Put another way, you could say that by living an immoral life, a person is rejecting God through their works. If they say one thing and do another, what is in their heart is evident through their actions.
God accepted Abel’s gift but God denied Cain’s gift. God loved Jacob but God hated Esau. God really does have preferences. Grace is most certainly not unconditional.
By following the conditions of salvation laid out in the Bible, this doesn’t mean that you are getting to heaven by your own merit. You are not! If you really were earning your salvation, there would be Buddhist monks who would be way further ahead in line than you. But no, they are not, because Jesus is the only way.
However, just because Jesus is the only way does not mean that anything goes after you accept Him. Paul said in Hebrews 10:26, “If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left”.
I believe this verse means that if you accept Jesus and then don’t change your ways and continue living in sin until you die, thinking you are saved by “unconditional grace”, then the sacrifice of Jesus doesn’t apply to you and you will not be saved.
Most Christians totally ignore that verse. Why do they ignore it? Because they are so brainwashed by the false doctrine of “unconditional grace” that they think that since this verse completely clashes with the doctrine they have been taught, that it must not apply to them.
But it does apply to them. It applies to you too. Basically, Christians ignore the verse because they believe the doctrine they have been taught is more sound than the words of the actual Bible. There is something fishy about that.
Why do you think Jesus said, “But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it” (Matthew 7:14), if over 2 billion people call themselves “Christian”? Is that “few”? Certainly not.
Why would Jesus say that the way is narrow and hard if all you have to do is say some words once and mean it? The answer is clear – it is not that easy. No, it is way, way harder, and most people will fail, according to Jesus Christ. Will you fail too?