Photo courtesy of Ian Espinosa
False Grace – Errors in the Current Message of Grace, Part 3
By Thomas Taylor
Error #3 God Forgave All Sin At The Cross Past, Present, and Future
So false grace teaching makes it sound like it doesn’t matter what you do as a Christian because even your future sins are pre-forgiven. Without telling someone directly, “It is okay to sin,” to tell them your future sins are pre-forgiven tells them indirectly it is okay to sin! It doesn’t affect your relationship with God at all, according to them. That is utter rubbish.
All sins were not forgiven at the cross. All sins were paid for at the cross. But there is a huge difference between payment and forgiveness. The payment was made for all sin past, present, and future but forgiveness requires repentance. Repentance is you agreeing to place your sin at the cross. Forgiveness then follows. There is no Scripture saying all sins are forgiven past, present, and future without condition. Repentance is you handing that sin over to the cross otherwise the sin is yours.
Matthew 6:15 “But if you do not forgive others, then your Father will not forgive your transgressions.
Notice the conditional “if” statement. You must do something to receive forgiveness. You must repent from unforgiveness or you will not be forgiven. The doctrine of repentance preceding forgiveness is well-established in scriptures. Consider the following verses which strongly prove the doctrine of repentance preceding forgiveness:
Mark 1:4 John the Baptist appeared in the wilderness preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.
Acts 2:38 Peter said to them, “Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.
Acts 5:31 “He is the one whom God exalted to His right hand as a Prince and a Savior, to grant repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins.
Acts 8:22 “Therefore repent of this wickedness of yours, and pray the Lord that, if possible, the intention of your heart may be forgiven you.
Repentance is always a prior condition to forgiveness. The only exception would be sin committed in ignorance (Luke 23:34).
Matthew 11:20 Then He began to denounce the cities in which most of His miracles were done, because they did not repent.
Jesus was looking for repentance after ministering God’s Word and the power of the Spirit. He is not looking for faith without the work of repentance but faith that works by repentance.
Does God Pour Out His Wrath On His People for Their Sin or Did He Take All Punishment at the Cross?
Luke 12:41-46 NASB Peter said, “Lord, are You addressing this parable to us, or to everyone else as well?” (42) And the Lord said, “Who then is the faithful and sensible steward, whom his master will put in charge of his servants, to give them their rations at the proper time? (43) “Blessed is that slave whom his master finds so doing when he comes. (44) “Truly I say to you that he will put him in charge of all his possessions. (45) “But if that slave says in his heart, ‘My master will be a long time in coming,’ and begins to beat the slaves, both men and women, and to eat and drink and get drunk; (46) the master of that slave will come on a day when he does not expect him and at an hour he does not know, and will cut him in pieces, and assign him a place with the unbelievers.
The question really should be “Who are His people?” His people are the faithful and sensible stewards in this parable. They are doing His will as their normal lifestyle. He does not pour out His wrath on His people because His people would never live a lifestyle of sin (1 Thess. 1:9). They have repented and are walking in the light (1 John 1:7).
But the ones, who would call Jesus their master, in this parable that are unfaithful will be destroyed the same as a lost sinner. They are lost should they die or the Lord return while they are living an unrepentant lifestyle of sin. However, if they repent before they die or before the Lord returns, they can be treated just like His faithful children and enter into the Kingdom of Heaven.
Did He take all punishment at the cross for all men’s sins? Absolutely! Will the unfaithful people, who once declared Jesus as Lord but now are living in sin, pay for their own sins or did Jesus pay? Jesus paid for their sins but they must hand the sin over to Jesus through repentance first. If they do not, they will be cut to pieces just as Jesus said here in verse 46.
Would Jesus Really Pour Out His Wrath On Those Who Were Once Saved?
Revelation 3:16 KJV So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.
Jesus here in Revelation is talking to a church, i.e. those that would call themselves Christians. He says He will vomit them out of His mouth. They had to be in His mouth to vomit them out. In other words, they were saved at one time but now they are to be cast out. However, their is hope. He then says to them, Rev 3:19, “As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent.” So they can still come back as long as they have breath in their bodies. They still can repent as long as they live in this life.
Revelation 2:4-5 NASB ‘But I have this against you, that you have left your first love. (5) ‘Therefore remember from where you have fallen, and repent and do the deeds you did at first; or else I am coming to you and will remove your lampstand out of its place—unless you repent.
Remember, Jesus is again talking to a church, those that would call themselves Christians. To remove this church’s lampstand means they are rejected and cast out of God’s Kingdom. The church was in its place in Jesus’ presence (Rev. 1:12, 13). To be removed from His presence is to be excommunicated forever. Again, as long as they are in this life, they can still repent and get right with God. Repentance is what is necessary to receive forgiveness.
Revelation 2:15-16 NASB ‘So you also have some who in the same way hold the teaching of the Nicolaitans. (16) ‘Therefore repent; or else I am coming to you quickly, and I will make war against them with the sword of My mouth.
Jesus, the loving compassionate Jesus who blessed children sitting on His lap, is the same Jesus who overturned the tables of money-changers. He fashioned cords to make a whip wherewith to beat them. This same Jesus is coming back in wrath to destroy the enemies of God. Here He warns a church that has fallen away due to false doctrine that He will make war against them if they do not repent. Therefore, they would receive the same portion as sinners who never knew God, only worse. It would be better for them to have never known than to have know God’s will and rejected it (2 Peter 2:21).
Conclusion: Only Sins That Have Been Repented of Have Been Forgiven
1 John 1:6-7 NASB If we say that we have fellowship with Him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth; (7) but if we walk in the Light as He Himself is in the Light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin.
If someone calls themselves a Christian yet lives in sin, they are in darkness. They are lost. It is only when one walks in the light (of God) that they are cleansed. When they do not, they are not.
Therefore, all sins past, present, and future are paid for at the cross but the sins have not arrived at the cross until that person repents. Repentance delivers our sins to Jesus. This doesn’t mean you have to recall every sin since the beginning of your life and repent of them. You can only repent of the sins you are aware of committing. If you are sinning right now you would know it. The sins of your past you cannot remember are at the cross as long as you are not still knowingly practicing them. Remembering every past sins is not the point at all; Christ’s forgiveness of all sins before your salvation was completed. The point is: What are you doing right now? Are you walking in the light that you know today? If you are, you ARE cleansed.
The cleansing is what happens spiritually where are our garments are washed clean again from the defilement of sin (Rev. 19:8; Eph. 5:26-27; Rev. 3:4-5). Jesus will come back for a Church without spot or wrinkle in their garments. This means they will be living right and will fully repent and confess all known sins to stay cleansed from the defilement of sin.