More and more, I am seeing some of my friends who were bought up in church, do the whole ‘church thing’, sing on choirs, went to church every sunday only for them to later on to ‘backslide’. So I have to ask the question, did a true regeneration occur? I did address this on my previous post but I came across this video which reiterated not only my view, but what I believe is a biblical view

Many claim to have been Christians and now claim to have ceased practicing Christianity for whatever reason. Where this may be their experience, the truth is they were never true Christians. They used to THINK they were Christians and later only proved they never were. The Bible is clear that God chooses His people, sovereignly saves them, and keeps them through death and unto life with Him. These are fundamental truths to the Christian faith and cannot be changed by experience- we must properly interpret our experience based on truth. Some claim they used to be a Christian. Fact is, Christians endure till the end, because real Christians are drawn and kept by God.

HT: Independant Conservative

Related post:

Can a True Christian Backslide?

How do you know that you are saved?

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Comments
  1. Michael Thacks says:

    that’s a very very big call:

    To say that all former christians never really believed.

    My former christian friends are some of the most honest and real people I know. I would be very hesitant to call them liars or they’re entire Christian life a big fat lie. Indeed I would say they were more genuine than a lot of current christians i knew.
    Also, if this is the case, then what the hell (pun intended) does it take to be a ‘true’ christian?

  2. Alan Higgins says:

    Michael, look at the two links at the bottom of the article

  3. DJ says:

    As a former Christian myself, I certainly would take issue with this interpretation. More relevant for the Christian view, I can say that most of my family and friends – to this day – are professing Christians and many of them reject the interpretation and application of biblical truth as you present it here.

    That those who once professed Jesus Christ as Lord and who are now in a place where they question that former belief – can all categorically be said to have never truly accepted Jesus into their hearts and thus never beyond escaping the bounds of God’s love in Jesus Christ (for which believers can never be separated whether by neither land and sea and all that), is quite the assumption for a mere human being who yet sees through a glass dimly to pronounce.

    Might some truly have been joined with Christ and now be confused but in that not beyond God’s reach to restore them in their faith and see things clearly? God looks at the heart and man sees the outside. Why do Christians so often feel the need to play God in making assumptions and judgments concerning the heart? Does not “playing god” anger him as much as anything?

    It would seem, even to me, a former Christian, that the view of God you present here is rather small and too small for as to be presumed by many of the life-long Christians I know.

    Thanks for hearing me out.

    Regards,
    DJ

  4. Alan Higgins says:

    So if you read Mark 4:1-20, which category would you say you (or those who once professed Christ) would come under?

  5. Yos says:

    In response, what are you thoughts on these videos(any two)?:




    …and this article?:

    http://de-conversion.com/2009/03/30/no-two-christians-worship-the-same-god/

  6. Alan Higgins says:

    My views can be seen at https://realchristianity.wordpress.com/2008/08/17/true-and-false-conversion/ and https://realchristianity.wordpress.com/2008/02/11/can-a-true-christian-backslide/

    Only time will tell if what a person did was a true conversion or not. The bible makes it very clear that many people who think that there are christians (not only athists) will be very surprised when they have to face God.

    I disagree with the last article. Whilst I agree that there are some doctrines that different denominations disagree on e.g. speaking on tongues, there are essentail doctrines that are non – negotiable. Like Jesus Christ being the only way, Jesus being God to name a few. That does not mean we are serving ‘different Gods’

  7. Yos says:

    Fair enough.

    In response to the last paragraph: Are you trying to say that the picture of G-d that’s painted by the Wesleyan-Arminian and Calvinists are the same? If so,how can their views be reconciled? What both groups are focusing are seem like a non-negotiable area. (Keep in mind that they’re not the only groups)

    from the article:”While the characteristics of justice (Calvinism focus) and mercy (Wesleyan focus) are not mutually exclusive, the elevation of either of these characteristics over the other does present a different person.”

    If you’d rather talk this over email,I’d be cool with that.

  8. Alan Higgins says:

    I am not saying that at all. What I am saying that even though armenians and calvinist may disagree on such things such as election, for example. Pentecostals may disagree with methodist and so on, but there are some core doctrines which cannot be compromised on. See http://www.apologeticsindex.org/158-essential-doctrines-of-the-christian-faith as an example

  9. lamar9 says:

    i can understand the importance of the idea that there is no such thing as a ‘former’ christian to the christian dogma. maybe it is vital to the ‘church’ that the members believe that a sincere member cannot have enough doubts to walk away. it might cause church membership to go down and weaken its strength. at the very least keep away that valuable tithe money.

    in my case, i walked away after deciding to seek the truth on my own. i didn’t want to accept a belief soley based on my emotional familiarity to it. i didn’t want to be like the muslims, catholics, jehovah witnesses, or mormons whose religion was given to them. i wanted to be sure i wasn’t in a false religion.

    i realized that justification through faith in jesus alone is another example of how religion pees on your back and tells you it’s rain. they say the christian god is just, but yet allows millions to choose hell because of their non belief in jesus as God himself.

    after learning to think outside of the christian box, i can see how you guys are guilty of calling good evil and evil good, but you’re so deluded that you cannot see it. not even a little bit. i’m not saying i have the answers, but pulling that splinter out of my eye helps.

    letting go of the christian faith actually strenghtened my dependence on God. i am standing out totally on a limb here and i can only rely on His grace and mercy instead of my faith in what another man told me about Him. especially when what they say He is and what He does is contradictory.

    my journey to this point wasn’t easy, but it feels like a burden has been lifted off my shoulders.

  10. Alan Higgins says:

    So which God do you follow? The God of the bible?

  11. Lorena says:

    I used to defend myself from that argument, “You were never a true Christian, Lorena.” But maybe you guys are right. If being a “True Christian” means SHELVING your brain, then I never was one.

    As a Christian, I never stopped thinking, analyzing, pondering whether I was being told the truth or not. Eventually, that made me recant the faith. And I can say with all certainty that I will never be a Christian again.

    Pastors and leaders never lied to me intentionally. They told me what they believed was the truth, and they meant well. However, the Christian faith doesn’t stand scrutiny. And it should, for its claims are grand.

    So, no. Prayed and read my Bible for years, was in many choirs, took seminary classes, attended Bible study, taught Sunday school, went in missionary trips, married a Christian, read countless Christian books, but no. I was never a “True Christian.”

    I refuse to give up my ability to think for myself and reach my own conclusions. So be it.

  12. Jeff says:

    The funny thing here is that the verses you are quoting initially are referring to Jesus desciples who are currently with him, later in the chapter he is talking about all who will believe (verse 20), yet you are using those verses to speak of all believers. You might want to read that over again and get the CONTEXT right.

    Most of my 17 years as a Christian was as a hard core Calvinist just like you, an arrogant know it all that believes you are right according to your interpretation of the scriptures. Calvinism and reformed theology took me out and crashed my faith in the end. Oh yes, I was just like you, just as fervant, bible studying, and God seeking. “No one could ever lose their faith, at least not a true Christian.”

    Here is the problem, and why many fall away: The bible becomes the object of their faith. Christians love their bible, study it, treasure it, and hold it dear to their heart. The only thing most of them never learn is how to love. They can quote you verses left and right, up and down. They can show you why “they” are right and the other church is wrong, they can divide people and countries with their bible, they can prove their doctrines with their bible, they can twist and turn any and every verse for their own purposes and say that the Holy Spirit is guiding them. Let me see Mr Calvinist, the word World doesn’t really mean the “whole world” now does it, and on and on it goes.

    In the end I am now finding love in a very odd place, non Christians. My recollection of Christian love is that it is very conditional at best. Before you continue boasting of how your interpretation of the bible states they were never believers to begin with, perhaps you should walk in our shoes for a while. Oh thats right, you will never walk in our shoes because you are one of the ἐκλεκτός, chosen of God. So was I.

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