Yes and No. When Jesus died on the cross, didn’t He say, “It is finished?” John 19:30 Well, what was finished? Was it not that trying to make it to heaven by the works of the law was finished? Galatians 2:16 “Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.” Romans 13:10 “Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law.” Was it not that God’s plan of redemption was finished and that God had broken down the middle wall of partition between man, making it possible for all men, Jew and Gentile alike, to come to the Father through the blood of Jesus and receive the forgiveness of sins and eternal life? Ephesians 2:14-18 “For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us; Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace; And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby: And came and preached peace to you which were afar off, and to them that were nigh. For through him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father.” Revelation 22:17 “And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.” John 3:16-17 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.”
Did not the blood of Jesus pay for all sins that a man can commit, with the exception of the sin of blasphemy, which Jesus said would never be forgiven? Matthew 12:31-32 “Wherefore I say unto you, All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men. And whosoever speaketh a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but whosoever speaketh against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, neither in the world to come.”
So then with this one exception, which we will deal with later, have all our sins, past, present and future been forgiven? And are there any conditions to receiving or having this forgiveness of all sins, past, present and future? First, let us consider the issue of sin and what Jesus did in reference to sin at Calvary.
1 Corinthians 15:3 “Christ died for our sins.” Why? Because “The wages of sin is death,” Romans 6:23. The whole issue is, did Jesus pay the full debt of our sins and are their any limits of His forgiveness? Did He make only a partial payment or a down payment for our sins? Did He pay for only some of them or did He pay for all our sins? Did He only pay for past sins, or did He also pay for future sins? Did He only pay for the sins we committed before we were saved or were they all in the future when He paid for them? Have the sins we commit after being saved forgiven as well? When were or are they forgiven?
John 1:29 "Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world." Isaiah 53:6 “All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.” 1 Peter 3:18 “For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit.” 1 John 2:2 “And he is the propitiation (atonement) for our sins; and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world.” Jesus took our place on the Cross, took our sins upon Himself and died for our sins. 1 John 2:2 “And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.” Revelation 1:5 “And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood.”
No man will “go to hell” because of his “sins” but because He refused to accept the finished works of Calvary. He refused to accept the sacrificial atonement of the blood of Jesus for their sins. He refused the forgiveness of sins that is freely offered to all who will believe it and receive the Lord Jesus Christ into their lives, who will repent of their sins and turn from their independent and rebellious ways against the grace and commandments of God. Mark 1:15 “And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel.” What is it to repent? It is to repent of our sins, but more, it is to repent of our rebellion against the Lordship of Christ and the authority of His Word, and of our living our lives totally independent of Him. It is to have a change of mind and to see our sins as He see our sins and to be truly sorry for our sins, so that we confess them and turn about face, turn away from our sins to no longer walk in them. There are many verses that establish this.
We have to confess and receive Christ. Romans 10:8-10 “But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach; That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.” To confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, is to confess Him as your personal Lord, it is to invite Him into your life as Lord! It is not merely a mental assent that He is Lord or that you say, “Jesus is Lord” but that you confess Him personally, as Lord. John 1:11-12 “He came unto his own, and his own received him not. But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:” Have you received Him as your personal Lord and Savior? For either He is Lord or He is not Savior. You cannot separate the two. I have another message called “What Does it Mean to be a True Christian or the Lordship of Christ” which deals with this in detail.
So then, what about the doctrine that says, when I confessed Christ, when I first asked Him to forgive my sins, all my sins, past, present and future were forgiven. That is the basis of what is called “unconditional eternal security.” The key word is unconditional. It says, I am not eternally saved; there is nothing I can do to loose my salvation. Some even say that it is now impossible for them to sin, that even though they physically do the things that were sin before they “confessed Christ,” they are no longer sin. It’s, “God don’t see my sin, He just sees the blood.” That is a doctrine of devils and not a doctrine according to holiness and it is damning many a soul to hell.
Yes, Jesus did for all sin. And when He died, all my sins were still in the future. He also died for the sins of ALL men. Yet, most men will end up in hell and not receive that forgiveness of sin that was paid for, or the eternal life of Christ. Why? Because they have not met His conditions! They have not believed upon the Lord Jesus Christ and they have not repented of their sin and they have not received Christ as Lord and Savior! So they will not be saved. Okay, you did come to Christ and truly repent of your sins and receive His forgiveness and salvation. You truly were “born again” of His Spirit, not just go through a religious ritual and say some “sinner prayer.” John 3:3 “Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” John 3:5-7 “Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.” He didn’t say, you must say a religious prayer. Anybody can say some words, but did they really mean it? Did they really believe what they said? Did they really submit to His Lordship? Any preacher that says that all who repeat a “sinners prayer” after them are “born again”, “saved” and have “eternal life” is a pure liar. There must be true repentance and true faith in Christ and humbling of the self pride to His Lordship before the work of salvation is completed by the Spirit and we come to Titus 3:5 “the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost” and brings salvation.
A condition that must be met for the penitent sinner to be saved is found in the words of Jesus in John 6:44. “No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.” Before a man can be “born again” of the spirit, he must be drawn by the spirit and convicted of his sins by the spirit. John 16:8 “And when he (The Comforter or Holy Spirit, verse 7) is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment.” When you are convicted and convinced of your sin and need for a savior, that you are a sinner and that you can’t save yourself, and so come to the Savior for forgiveness of sin, then you can be saved. If you say a “sinners pray” but have not been convinced of sin and draw by the Father unto Christ, you cannot come to Him and you cannot yet be saved. It is all a work of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit opens a mans eyes to the truth, removing the blindness of sin put on them by Satan, and it is He that convicts of sin, and draws men to Christ and it is He that does the work of salvation, in the “washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Ghost” bringing the repentant sinner to the new birth of salvation. It is no different from the fact that a man cannot be saved or have his sins washed away by the ritual of baptism. If you do down in the water a sinner, you just come up a wet sinner. You must first be “born again” for baptism to have any meaning or purpose. After you have believed the gospel, after you have believed upon the Lord Jesus Christ for your salvation, then you are a candidate for scriptural baptism and not before. Infant baptism is meaningless, actually worse than none at all for it is a deception of the devil. Many think that made them a “Christian.”
Matthew 3:6 “And were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing their sins.” Mark 16:16 “He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.” Luke 3:7 “Then said he to the multitude that came forth to be baptized of him, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come?” John didn’t baptize them for they were not repentant. Acts 2:38 “Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.” Again, the order is first repentance, then baptism and not be baptized so you can receive forgiveness of sin, but repentance is what leads to salvation. Baptism is a outward act, to tell the world you now follow Jesus and belong to Him, as a testimony and witness to the world that you have repented of your sin and been saved by the blood of Jesus. It is a public confession of Christ. IT has always been the act of demarcation for Jew, Hindu, Muslim and others. They can attend a ‘Christian’ church and it is no big thing, but when they are baptized as a Christian, then they are no longer considered a Jew, a Muslim, a Hindu, etc. It is there that the persecution against the new believer begins by these religions who reject Christ as the Messiah and only way to the Father and eternal life. Acts 2:41 “Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.”
Further more, notice what the scripture says to believers, not unbelievers. 1 John 1:6-2:5 “If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth: But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin. If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us. My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous: And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world. And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments. He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him.” Notice all the “if’s” in that passage? If means conditional. If we walk in the light of His Word, the light of truth, if we walk in fellowship with Him, then His blood continually cleanses us from all sin. That is the same as, “washing of water by the Word” (Ephesians 5:26). If we are walking in the light of His Word, if we keep His Commandments, then we are continually washed and forgiven of our sins. If we confess our sins, again, we admit and confess them, not try to hide them as if we didn’t’ commit them, He is faithful to forgive us our sins. And this is to “my little children.” Those who have been born again as children in the Lord. “That ye sin not” means that you don’t habitually commit sin, you don’t practice sin and when you do sin, you go back to the cross, confess your sin and receive cleansing. If you do not, then continually unconfessed sin will first destroy your fellowship with the Lord, then bring separation between you and Him and spiritual death.
There is a big difference between the fact that Jesus died for my sins, that He took my sins in His body on the Cross and my being forgiven of my sins. He died for my sins at Calvary, but my sins were not forgiven at Calvary. My sins are not forgiven until I repent and confess my sins. Then I receive the forgiveness that has been provided for. He died that I might be forgiven, He paid the price for my sins, but that does not make me forgiven. For if I am already forgiven, then I am already saved and don’t need to repent to be forgiven or saved.
Furthermore, I believe in “eternal security” for the believer that is in Christ, but not “unconditional eternal security.” That can be disproven with hundreds of scriptures. Yes, I believe the passage in Romans 8 that includes verses 35 and 39. Romans 8:35 “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?” Romans 8:39 “Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” That is a fact! Nothing outside you can separate you from Christ. Only one thing can and that isn’t mentioned in this passage. Your unconfessed SIN! Isaiah 59:2 “But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.” Remember the passage of 1John above, “IF you confess your sins…” What if you won’t confess them? Is it not obvious and clear? Why do men twist that which is simple and obvious and turn away from all common sense and simple interpretation of scriptures? It is like this. No devil of hell or anything outside you can take your salvation from you. NO! NEVER! But, you are still a free moral agent, just as when you came to Christ. And just as you were free to accept His salvation, you are free to walk away from it like the prodigal son and loose what you had. You can give it up, just like he did. That is why the scripture says of his returning to the Heavenly Father, “For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry” (Luke 15:24). He was not physically dead, but spiritually dead. When he was in his Father’s house was he not alive spiritually? How was he dead? He was dead in his trespasses and sins! Ephesians 2:1 “And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins.”
Then there is another way to loose your salvation. That is if you refuse to forgive others, after you have been forgiven yourself. Matthew 18:23-35 “Therefore is the kingdom of heaven likened unto a certain king, which would take account of his servants. And when he had begun to reckon, one was brought unto him, which owed him ten thousand talents. But forasmuch as he had not to pay, his lord commanded him to be sold, and his wife, and children, and all that he had, and payment to be made. The servant therefore fell down, and worshipped him, saying, Lord, have patience with me, and I will pay thee all. Then the lord of that servant was moved with compassion, and loosed him, and forgave him the debt. But the same servant went out, and found one of his fellowservants, which owed him an hundred pence: and he laid hands on him, and took him by the throat, saying, Pay me that thou owest. And his fellowservant fell down at his feet, and besought him, saying, Have patience with me, and I will pay thee all. And he would not: but went and cast him into prison, till he should pay the debt. So when his fellowservants saw what was done, they were very sorry, and came and told unto their lord all that was done. Then his lord, after that he had called him, said unto him, O thou wicked servant, I forgave thee all that debt, because thou desiredst me: Shouldest not thou also have had compassion on thy fellowservant, even as I had pity on thee? And his lord was wroth, and delivered him to the tormentors, till he should pay all that was due unto him. So likewise shall my heavenly Father do also unto you, if ye from your hearts forgive not every one his brother their trespasses.” Why do we not believe the words of Jesus? If the Father turns you over to the tormentors, the demons for torment, if the Father put back upon that servant his sins that were once forgiven and therefore the punishment for that sin, because how can you say that he is put under the punishment for a sin that is forgiven; then you must admit that he is no longer forgiven and no longer saved! You debt of sin can never be paid. That is why men will suffered eternal damnation at the hands of the demon spirit they gave themselves too on the earth. Unforgiveness is a spirit! Forgiveness and unforgiveness is a spiritual thing. Other scripture confirm this. Matthew 6:12 “And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.” Matthew 6:14-15 “For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you: But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.” Notice that these are also the words of Jesus! How can you explain that away? If you sins are not forgiven, they you are dead in your sins. That is scripture! Ephesians 4:32 “And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you.” 1 John 3:10 “In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil: whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God, neither he that loveth not his brother.” If you do not and will not forgive, then you cannot say you love. God forgives us our sins not because we deserve it, nor did He send Jesus to die for our sins, because we deserve it, but because of His love for “God is love” (1John 4:16). James 2:13 “For he shall have judgment without mercy, that hath shewed no mercy; and mercy rejoiceth against judgment.” If you shown no mercy in forgiving others, then you receive no mercy in forgiveness. Galatians 6:7 “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” You must sow forgiveness to receive forgivenss.
Lastly, I want to cover the issue of what is called the “unpardonable sin” or the sin of “blasphemy” in Matthew 12:31-32 we quoted above. To understand it, you must consider it in the context of which Jesus spoke it. Matthew 12:22-32 “Then was brought unto him one possessed with a devil, blind, and dumb: and he healed him, insomuch that the blind and dumb both spake and saw. And all the people were amazed, and said, Is not this the son of David? But when the Pharisees heard it, they said, This fellow doth not cast out devils, but by Beelzebub the prince of the devils. And Jesus knew their thoughts, and said unto them, Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation; and every city or house divided against itself shall not stand: And if Satan cast out Satan, he is divided against himself; how shall then his kingdom stand? And if I by Beelzebub cast out devils, by whom do your children cast them out? therefore they shall be your judges. But if I cast out devils by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God is come unto you. Or else how can one enter into a strong man's house, and spoil his goods, except he first bind the strong man? and then he will spoil his house. He that is not with me is against me; and he that gathereth not with me scattereth abroad. Wherefore I say unto you, All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men. And whosoever speaketh a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but whosoever speaketh against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, neither in the world to come.” The Pharisees that charged Jesus with casting out devils by the power of Beelzebub knew that a great miracle was performed, knew that it was the power of God, knew that it was something they could not do nor had they seen before, as many of the miracles of Christ which were proof that He was the Messiah. So they were intentionally attributing that which was a miracle of God, the power of God, to a work of the Devil. That is the blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, which is unforgivable. John 10:36-38 “Say ye of him, whom the Father hath sanctified, and sent into the world, Thou blasphemest; because I said, I am the Son of God? If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not. But if I do, though ye believe not me, believe the works: that ye may know, and believe, that the Father is in me, and I in him.” John 10:25 “Jesus answered them, I told you, and ye believed not: the works that I do in my Father's name, they bear witness of me.” John 15:22-24 “If I had not come and spoken unto them, they had not had sin: but now they have no cloke for their sin. He that hateth me hateth my Father also. If I had not done among them the works which none other man did, they had not had sin: but now have they both seen and hated both me and my Father.” In closing, if you are convicted of sin, you have not committed the unpardonable sin, for the Holy Spirit would not be drawing you to Christ and to repentance. Second, you cannot commit the unpardonable sin ignorantly. It is a purposeful, knowing sin that the Pharisees committed that put them beyond even the forgiveness of the blood of Jesus. That is the one sin that His blood did not cover and will not cleanse. I have talked to people who thought they had committed this sin, but it didn’t take long to prove to them that they had not. It is not easy to do and few have ever been guilty of this sin and need to worry about it. Those who have done so are as hard as the Pharisees were in Jesus day to the things of God, the moving of the Spirit of God, the miracles of God and the Word of God. Nothing can touch their spirit, nothing can move them to wanting God or repenting of their sin, they are worse than those whom the scripture speaks of as having a “conscience seared with a hot iron” (1Timothy 4:2).
Have you been truly “Born Again”, “washed in the blood” and therefore “saved?” If not, then you now have received the truth that can set you free and allow you to come to the reality of the “True Salvation” that is in Christ.