In Galatians 5:4, the Apostle Paul talks about falling from grace and being severed from Christ. What does this mean? And how can you know if you’ve fallen from grace? Learn more in this Little Lessons series!
I’m Afraid I Have Fallen From Grace. What Do I Do? (Part 1)
Thank you so very much for joining me. We’re going to once again, try to address a question from one of our beloved viewers and that viewer wrote to me and said, “I’m afraid that I’ve fallen from grace.” Now that is a biblical expression ‘fallen from grace.’ The apostle Paul wrote, and this particular viewer pointed out Galatians 5:4, Paul said to the Galatians. Now let me read it so I get it exactly. You have been severed from Christ. You who are seeking to be justified by law. You have fallen from grace. So that’s a biblical concept. And I know that there is a diversity of opinion and a lot of disagreement within the body of Christ on what that really means.
There are quite a few within the body of Christ, who would say that it’s impossible to be severed from Christ once you are joined to Christ and because they have trouble with verses like these because Paul told the Galatians, you have been severed from Christ. Well, in order to be severed from Christ, you’d have to first be joined to Christ, right? That only makes sense. But if your theology doesn’t allow for any such possibility, then you have to come up with some kind of explanation for what we’ve just read. Not to mention scores of other scriptures. And those who believe that it’s impossible to be severed from Christ once you’re joined to Christ, they will gravitate towards those scriptures that give us assurance of our salvation. And those scriptures, which point out the faithfulness of God and his mercy. And those are all in the Bible.
Those are all good scriptures, but they have to be balanced, I believe with other scriptures in the Bible, that point out the fact that we are free moral agents, even after we become believers in Jesus Christ, and therefore it’s possible for believers to become unbelievers, right? I mean, it’s possible. Peter was a believer when he was walking on the water towards Jesus, walking by faith, but then he looked at the wind, the waves and he began to doubt and he sank. And Jesus asked him, why did you doubt? Well, he was experiencing a miracle from God and he lost that miracle from God when he doubted.
So it’s possible for believers to become unbelievers. And so I think the same thing could be considered to be possible with faith in Christ. And if you’ve been around, as long as I have as a Christian, you’ve seen people who, by all indications, they were at one time believers in, and therefore devoted followers of Jesus Christ, who today would tell you, they don’t believe in Jesus Christ and they’re not following Jesus Christ.
So those who believe you can’t forfeit salvation under any terms, or you can never be severed from Christ once you’re joined to Christ. They explain that by saying, “well, that was … he was just a phony convert and never really had at the beginning, because if you really got it, you would maintain it” and they’ll often use other theological arguments like, salvation is all of God and none of us, et cetera, et cetera. And we could go into all of that.
I’m not going to go into that today. But so a person reads a scripture and this particular viewer thought, well, it says you have been severed from Christ and why? Because you are seeking to be justified by law. And therefore, another way of saying that you’ve been severed from Christ and including the reason that is you’re seeking to be justified by the law, you have fallen from grace. So you were in grace, but now you’ve fallen from that grace.
And as she elaborated on why she was wondering if she found grace, she’s watched a YouTube video, I believe she said, and the guy was talking about how you’re not really saved unless you’re baptized. And there are those people out there, God bless them and of course, baptism is important. No one’s going to say otherwise. But to say that you’re not saved unless you been baptized. I know that … I think that there’s reason to question that. Every believer should be baptized and baptism is an indication that you are a believer. And if you read what Jesus said about the importance of being baptized, His commandment to be baptized and you refuse to be baptized, that would probably indicate you’re really not a believer.
Okay. So true believers do get baptized, but if they die from the time of they believing in Christ and get baptized, they don’t go to hell. That’s how I see it in the word of God. Okay. But she being and watching this, one of these videos, those guys said, you have to baptize. She had not been baptized yet. So she I guess hurried up and got baptized. But then she began thinking to herself, wait, and maybe she watched somebody else’s YouTube video. And that person said, well, those people are trusting in their baptism to save them.
And so they’re being justified by what they do, they’re trusting in their works. And so those are the people who fall from grace and are severed from Christ. And she was afraid, I’ve been severed from Christ because I was looking at my baptism as the means of salvation, other than Jesus Christ. Would be a mistake to be thinking, well, I must be saved, that I’m safe and secure in Christ, in salvation because I’ve been baptized.
And no matter how I live my life it doesn’t make a difference whether I’m a fornicator, an adulter, a thief, a murderer, I’ve been baptized. So I’m safe and secure in my salvation. Well, that would be of course, very wrong thinking according to many other scriptures, right? So baptism is not what guarantees salvation. Baptism is an indication that you do believe in Jesus and therefore you are saved. All right. So anyways, I of course wrote to her. I said, “it doesn’t sound to me like you’re trusting in your baptism. Even if you were at one time, doesn’t sound to me like you’re trusting in your baptism and you believe that you’re saved because Jesus died for your sins and we’re saved by grace through faith. And so even if you were temporarily severed from Christ, you’re not now.” Amen.
And I would say that same thing to anybody. Now in the Galatians case, there’ve been some false teachers who came into Galatia after the apostle Paul, and we’re teaching people that you’re not saved unless you are circumcised. Look here in the Bible, the Old Testament, it says, you got to be circumcised. So you guys, aren’t saved. If you die, you go to hell. And so you need to be circumcised. So everyone’s lining up, all the men, I guess, were lining up to be circumcised. And Paul is saying, “what?” You’re trying to be justified by keeping the law. Well, it’s too late to be saved by keeping the law. All the law has ever done for anybody is condemned them because we’re all sinners. So that’s why we needed Jesus to die for us. That’s why we need … the only way to be saved is by grace.
And so if someone walked away from the circumcision saying, “well, now I’m saved because I’ve been circumcised and that’s the reason I’m saved,” well, you’ve fallen from grace. You’ve been severed from Christ. That’s what Paul said. Sure. Because now you no longer have faith in Jesus. You have faith in your circumcision. All right. So we’ll talk about this a little bit more in the next lesson, because I think there’s some ramifications here that are very, very important for us to understand. We’re not saved by our works, but we are saved unto good works. Saved people do have fruit, but that fruit is not what saves them. Okay. Thank you so much for joining me. Until next time, God bless you.
I’m Afraid I Have Fallen From Grace. What Do I Do? (Part 2)
On our last little lesson, we began trying to address a question of one of our beloved viewers, and that is, a person who is afraid that they have. And what happened to the Galatians, according to the apostle Paul, had happened to them. Paul wrote in Galatians five and verse number four, you have been severed from Christ. You who are seeking to be justified by law. You have fallen from grace. And in this particular view of the situation, they had watched somebody’s YouTube video on baptism and how that you’re not really saved unless you’re baptized. And she became very concerned about that and then got baptized.
And then became concerned, “Oh, now I’m trusting in my baptism.” Maybe she watched another YouTube video that said that. I’m trusting in my baptism and so now I fallen from grace because I’m seeking to be justified by what I’ve done, rather than what Christ has done. Well, you can see how the devil could just get in there and bring some chaos to people’s minds in this regard.
We are saved. Those of us who are saved. We are saved by grace. Why are we saved by grace? Because there’s no other way to be saved. If you’re a sinner and I happened to be in that category. And I happened to be a hundred percent certain that everyone viewing this video, except for maybe if Jesus is watching it, which I doubt that he is. But he knows, of course, everything I’m saying. So in that sense, he is watching it. But every human being other than Jesus, we’re all sinners. The only way we’re going to be saved is if God shows us some grace. That is undeserved favor or mercy, you might call it. And so, there’s going to have to be forgiveness on God’s part. Or we’re not going to be saved.
So it’s impossible to be saved by works. It’s too late. Now, if you could have been perfect all your life and never sinned once. Well, then you wouldn’t need Jesus’s death to save you. You wouldn’t need him to die on the cross, you wouldn’t need God to forgive you of your sins because you wouldn’t have any sins to be forgiven. So you wouldn’t need to be saved by grace. But because you have sinned and because I have sinned, we all need to be saved by grace.
And there’s a means of how we acquire and take hold of that grace because it doesn’t happen automatically. See, not everybody’s saved even though God has grace. Even though Jesus died for the sins of the entire world, the bible says. Not everyone saved. So how do you acquire that grace? It’s by faith. You believe.
And what do you believe? Well you believe in Jesus. Who’s Jesus? He’s the son of God. So if you believe in Jesus, he’s the son of God, you’re saved. But of course, if you believe that, if you believe he’s the son of God and you’re going to stand before him one day and give an account. You’re going to want to do what he says. So there’s a component of obedience that always follows faith. And so people who do believe in Jesus, when they read his commandment that they should be baptized. Guess what? They get baptized. And people who profess to believe in Jesus, who would refuse to be baptized after they know what Jesus said about it. Prove that they really don’t believe in him. You understand the logic there.
Baptism doesn’t save us, but it’s one of the many things that proves that we have faith that has acquired the grace that saves us. James said it a little differently. Faith without works is dead and cannot save you. It’s useless. James said, read it for yourself in James chapter two. The problem in Galatia was they were all lining up to be circumcised because of some false teachers who came in after Paul. And look at Paul says prior to that verse I referred to at the beginning of our little lesson here. This is Galatians 5:2, behold, I Paul say that if you receive circumcision, Christ will be of no benefit to you. Why is that? Because in their case, they were believing that circumcision was the key that opened the door to their salvation, not Christ. And that’s wrong.
But remember that Paul, he actually got Timothy circumcised after Timothy believed in Jesus. And that was so he wouldn’t cause any offense to their Jewish audiences that they were preaching the gospel to. Because those Jews were so certain that they should be circumcised. And that they wouldn’t listen to anybody talk about God, he wasn’t circumcised. Paul got Timothy circumcised. Not because he needed to be circumcised to be saved. No. But because he didn’t want to cause any offense to the gospel to the Jews.
But he goes on it, I testify again to every man who received circumcision, that he is under obligation to keep the whole law. Tough road to hoe there. You have been severed from Christ, you are seeking to be justified by law, you have fallen from grace. Listen to this, here’s the good news. But we, through the spirit by faith, are waiting for the hope of righteousness. For in Christ Jesus, neither circumcision nor uncircumcision means anything. But here’s what’s important, but faith … and not just faith looks how he goes on. Faith working. Faith working through love. And so there’s another indication of the true believer. One who’s true and believes in Jesus, he loves.
We love because he first loved us. If we believe that he loved us and he died for us and he’s the Lord. Well, we’re going to love him. And we’re going to love others according to his commandment, to love others. And to love our neighbor as ourselves and do unto others as we’d have them do unto us. He showed me someone who’s not a lover and I’ll show you someone who’s not a Christian. Amen. That doesn’t mean that Christians are perfect in love. No, the Bible talks about we can grow in love. It’s the first fruit of the spirit. Fruit is first immature then it becomes green and grows and eventually it ripens and matures. Same thing in every Christians lives. A life we’re all, hopefully, growing in love month by month, year by year. None of us are perfect. Sometimes the flesh gets the upper hand, but we feel bad about that. Why? Because our nature has been changed. We’re now lovers because the grace of God has changed us.
So as I wrote to this dear viewer, I’ll say to anyone else who is watching this video, struggling with the same thing. You haven’t fallen from grace unless your answer to my question, why are you saved? Is, “Oh, because I do thus and so. And I have been baptized.” Well, then you’ve fallen from grace. True Christian, when you ask them, why are you saved? The first thing comes out of mouth is Jesus. Or Jesus died for my sins. Or God showed me grace. And part of that, grace is the fact that I’m living an obedient life nowadays. Because I’ve been transformed, the Holy spirit came to live inside of me. And I’m a new creation in Christ. I’ve been born again, all by God’s grace. That’s why I did get baptized because God changed me and I wanted to be obedient to Christ. And I saw his commandment to be baptized then I got baptized. So it’s all grace, just wonderful grace.
All right. Well that’s all the time we have for today’s lesson. Thank you so much for joining me. Until next time, God bless you.