By Patrick Hawthorne
“What a tragedy that in our day we often hear the gospel appeal made on this kind of basis: “Come to Jesus! You do not have to obey anyone. You do not have to change anything. You do not have to give up anything, alter anything, surrender anything, give back anything – just come to Him and believe in Him as Savior!” (A.W. Tozer, “I Call It a Heresy”.)
Dissociative Identity Disorder, also known a multiple personality disorder, is a condition whereby the person with the disorder might have two or more distinct personalities or identities. Some often mistake this condition for Schizophrenia which is when the affected person has moments where they are out of touch with reality. Of these two disorders, I assure you that Jesus has neither. Yet, the Church – the Body of Christ as a whole – often believes and teaches as if he does.
From pulpit to pew, we hear the cry, “Jesus wants to be your Savior.” This is absolutely true. However, a popular teaching merrily announcing that all are first saved by accepting Jesus as Savior but later sanctified (made holy) by accepting Him as Lord is a subtle deception straight from the pit of hell. Jesus does not possess two personalities nor does He serve in two separate roles.
He is not our Savior one day and our Sanctifier the next. To teach such is to give the appearance that we can freely accept the grace that brings salvation one day while putting off the process of denying ungodliness and worldly lusts until a more convenient time.
As Tozer wrote, “Jesus will not save those whom He cannot command.” Salvation is simply the byproduct of accepting Jesus as Lord. He does not “Save” us so that we can live like the world. He saves us so that we can live like Him. We are to be holy as He is holy. (1 Peter 1:15-16.)
“Jesus will not save those whom He cannot command.” (A.W. Tozer)
While it may appear that I am on a rant, I promise you that I am not. I am merely on a path to not only learn but to illuminate those areas which may lead to deception. Jesus said, in Matthew 24, “Be not deceived…” For us to be warned to not be deceived indicates that there is a possibility for us to be deceived. And, to claim that we could never be deceived is the first indication of one who is already deceived. Only a deceived person would teach that a person can be saved apart from obedience to the One who is the Sanctifier of those He has saved.
Jesus is the way, the truth and the life. No one can come to the Father except through Him (John 14:6). Apart from obedience to His Lordship, there can be no salvation. It is an all or nothing deal. Be blessed.