Sunday, February 22, 2009

Keeping the Faith

Some of my Christian friends question the LDS view of salvation, especially our concern for what we call "enduring to the end." This means that after we have initially accepted Jesus Christ as our Savior, we have to continue in His grace by continual faith, repentance, and good works. Or in other words, good works are a manifestation that Christ's grace and spirit are with us because it is Christ's grace and spirit which empower believers to good works.

The only, yet critical portion that LDS contribute to the whole process is that of our willingness. We offer our souls. Man has will. Jesus has come knocking on our door, and we are free to open our hearts up to Christ. But as CS Lewis says in Mere Christianity, we have to keep a willing mind and heart and remain open to Christ because once Christ enters into our house, He will immediately start making changes, and uncomfortable renovations like knocking down walls and such with a mind to transform our house into a temple worthy of His presence.

Therefore, it is always possible to fall from grace. That is why Paul said it is important to "keep the faith and finish the course and endure to the end." It is as easy to reject Christ as it is to initially accept Him. No one is perfect after they accept Christ, but there is a point when the Holy Ghost will cease to strive with the wicked.

Gen. 6: 3. And the Lord said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years.
2 Cor. 13: 5-7 Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?
Titus 1: 16 They profess that they know God; but in works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate.
2 Tim. 4: 7 I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith:

Tell me why Paul would boast of keeping the faith. Did Paul do anything of himself?

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