Outspoken Once-Saved-Always-Saved (OSAS) preacher, Jack Kelley has released a new Bible Study, admitting the need for repentance and confession of sins unwittingly committed by a heaven-bound Christian. Furthermore, he now also insists that a “state of continual closeness” to God – otherwise known as obedience or holiness – is necessary if one would not fall prey to the devil. The devil? Yes, the devil is also no longer to be arrogantly ignored, but soberly guarded against as the Bible counsels in 1 Peter 5:8-9!
Hitherto, these have been major issues of controversy in the OSAS doctrine. Evidently, IF anyone would embrace and abide with the prescriptions now being conceded by Jack Kelley, there would be no arguing the point that they could validly claim to be irreversibly eternally secure! The whole point is not whether our salvation is eternally secured or not, but rather if there are any responsibilities expected of us to bring to pass what the Lord has graciously provided. Notice the “IF” in the following key statement from the Bible:
“Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall: “2 Peter 1:10
Although in the new teaching, Jack Kelley very clearly assaults the basic axiom of the OSAS doctrine - the flat insistence that nothing one does or fails to do (deliberately or otherwise) has any implication on their eternal salvation [a.k.a. unconditional eternal security]; yet he still confounds this new position with a rehashing (possibly out of honest confusion) of a major paradigm in OSAS which, alluding to natural birth, insists that a Christian once born-again, cannot become “unborn” for any reason. That of course brings us back to the central tenet of the OSAS doctrine that a Christian cannot lose his salvation under any condition!
The fault with this “natural birth analogy” as we pointed out in our special write-up on OSAS, is that salvation at this point “in time” is not yet concluded. It remains an ongoing business till we step out of time into “eternity”! True, it has been paid for in full, but we are still required to work it out. As we also pointed out in the same write-up, Kenneth Haggin Ministry refers to this process as "Sanctification" which it goes on to define “as a definite, yet progressive work of grace, commencing at the time of regeneration and continuing until the consummation of salvation at Christ’s return (Heb. 12:14; 1 Thess. 5:23; 2 Peter 3:18; 2 Cor. 3:18; Phil. 3:12–14; 1 Cor. 1:30).” In other words, we are “works-in-progress”, and our salvation is yet to be consummated.
This crucial point can be clearly illustrated with the betrothal of a woman to a man, just as Mary was betrothed to Joseph. With the act of betrothal, the journey to marriage is to all intents and purposes, right on course; and the couple might now even be addressed as “husband” and “wife”. However, until the nuptial knot is eventually tied and the marriage consummated, the process could still be aborted. Joseph considered doing just that, until advised otherwise by an angel (Mathew 1:19-20)
The situation is beautifully illustrated by the cover image we used for our special write-up. Taken from a cover to John Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress, it shows the path from earth to the celestial city already cleared for passage, and a figure (presumably the Lord Jesus Christ, who had traversed that same path) standing at the other end, beckoning to Pilgrim and urging him on, via the footprints left behind. However there are two ferocious lions on either side of the path! But then they are chained! Pilgrim is required to trust the Lord urging him on, and boldly ignore the menacing lions, assured that if he walks in the Master’s footsteps clearly visible before him, he is firmly out of their reach!
In other words, the correct “natural birth analogy” Jack Kelley should have used would be that the Christian, as long as he is on this planet, is still like a baby in the womb. Conception is already an irreversibly done deal; and all things equal, birth after the necessary gestation period is guaranteed – with the baby not needing to contribute anything to the process. Nevertheless, it is not over until it is over. Our archenemy is most conscious of this, and he desperately seeks for any conceivable means to abort the pregnancy. Such as suggesting to the foetus it can do away with the umbilical cord without any grave repercussion!
The significant, cheering news is that Jack Kelley now teaches that even though the “Union” of a believer is unconditional and irrevocably secured at the point of new birth, it must still be continually serviced by “Fellowship.” Describing fellowship as “a little more complicated (than Union)”, Kelley agrees it includes abhorrence and regular confession of sins, coupled with continued obedience to the commandments of God.
As mentioned earlier, these are the very points of contention in OSAS where people are taught they have absolutely no further responsibility in “working out their salvation”; and that such acts of confession of sins and continued obedience to the instructions of the Lord actually amount to “Works” being added to “Grace”.
Kelley was apparently led to these new revelations by his genuine concerns and honest evaluations that many OSAS-affirming believers are living “defeated lives” with droves getting “discouraged and even [no longer] praying and attending church.” He therefore offers his new more Biblical position. Hopefully, people who have been deceived into the OSAS error will recognize all these shifting grounds which the Jack Kelleys of this world are however reluctant to boldly admit. Please read our more detailed comment on Jack Kelley’s welcomed new stance on our blog.
As we repeatedly emphasized in our special write-up, if only OSAS preachers will stop undermining foundational bible teachings, such as need for repentance, there would be no need splitting hairs over their teaching which could be waved aside as merely an unhelpful but permissible juvenile perspective. After all no one wishes to end up promoting the equally false impression at the other extreme: that it is okay to become obsessed with the possibilities of “falling from grace” or become drowned in “sin consciousness”! Though one who is born of God does not sin, (as Pastor Enoch Adeboye explains, simply because sin is no longer in his DNA – 2 Cor. 5:17), there is still the possibility of him falling into it if he is careless and docilely yields himself for manipulation by every “sleight of men” (Eph. 4:14). After all, though it is not in a sheep’s DNA to eat meat or dung, with sustained wrong company and counsel, coupled with some efforts, mince-meat and excreta may soon begin to taste like privileged high-class diet (like some humans now see GMOs and other tasty junk “foods!”).
For such infractions when we foolishly or carelessly play into the hand of the devil, we can be assured that the all-wise and loving Father has already provided a way of escape – REPENTANCE (1 John 1:9). And Restitution where necessary! It is outrageous therefore, that it is this very way of escape that “new-school” OSAS teachers desperately seek to block when they declare as a taboo, any resort to repentance or confession of sin.
As they vainly try to convince us, attempting to confess sins that God, supposedly, had already forgiven (even prior to their commission) can only amount to unbelief and recourse to self-righteousness – the only sin that even the lascivious grace of OSAS heresy cannot handle!
Now that a key OSAS teacher like Jack Kelley has begun to admit that a holy God cannot tolerate “unconfessed sins,” one wonders why any reasonable so-called Christian will still spurn a consciously holy lifestyle (with sorrowful confession of sins if or when they happen); and would rather opt for a life of separation from the Father and associated vulnerability to Devil’s wicked oppression.
The truth of the matter, of course, is that God is not a petty sadist insisting on things being done His own way, just to prove a point that He is the one in charge. He requires that repentance and asking of forgiveness (Luke 17:4) should precede forgiveness and acquittal because, in His great wisdom, He has designed that the power to overcome sin should be unleashed by the very process of repentance! We need to agree that what God calls sin is indeed sinful, wrong, and unhelpful; and understand that willfully going into sin is exactly tantamount to eating our own excreta or vomit! Then sin loses every appeal and power over our lives.
This indeed is the central tenet of the Christian faith. As we believe in Jesus correctly and accept Him, we are empowered to become sons of God (John 1:12). The victory is in our believing (1 John 5:5). Anyone who repudiates this basic tenet will continue to endless wallow in sin, till he would conclude that living a life free of sin is simply impossible. For such people, the Lord’s instruction to “go and sin no more” (John 8:11b) simply does not make any sense!
As Chris Onayinka and his ilk heretically interpret Mathew 1:21, Jesus came NOT to save people from their sins, but rather to excuse their sins which they may now continue to practice with impunity! (see references in our previous Write-up). On the contrary, as Pastor Odeyemi declared at the OAU on the basis of Rom 6:1-4, Grace actually enables us to live above sin, not to continue in it.
All this is why we must earnestly contend against these vociferous enchanters who teach the gullible they could continue with impunity in their sins, and that they are never to confess them or ask forgiveness of them.
Smooth-talking teachers who spend hours preaching, blogging, and facebooking on the “Neither do I condemn thee” portion of John 8:11 but woefully fail to mention the “go and sin no more” conclusion are dishonest and wicked agents of the devil, masquerading as teachers of the gospel. Spurred on by their fanciful thoughts that they are uncovering some never-before-seen deep truths of the Gospel, they tear and maul the Scriptures as they desperately push concepts designed to harden the conscience of people, eventually destroying their destiny and if possible, pushing them into hell-fire. Their evil mouths indeed “must be stopped” (Titus 1:11, Jude 1:3-4). (See also on our Blog the article: ON THEQUESTION OF SIN IN THE OSAS HERESY)