Dangers for the New Creation: Shrinking Back to DestructionHandbook 5: Article 21 - The Journey to Perfection

"And working together with Him, we... urge you not to receive the grace of God in vain -- for He says,

'At the acceptable time I listened to you,
And on the day of salvation I helped you;'

behold now is the acceptable time, behold now is the day of salvation."

2 Corinthians 6:1, 2

"Take care... lest there should be in any one of you an evil, unbelieving heart, in falling away from the living God... For we have become partakers of Christ, if we hold fast the beginning of our assurance firm until the end..."

Hebrews 3:12, 14

Dangers:

Looking Back
Falling Away
Turning Back When Times Are Difficult
Weighted Down

Looking Back (Remember Lot's wife)

"Do not love the world, nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world... is not from the Father, but is of the world."

1 John 2:15,16

"He who loves his life loses it; and he who hates his life in this world shall keep it to life eternal."

John 12:25

"But seek (aim at, strive after) first of all His Kingdom and His righteousness..."

Matthew 6:33 (Amplified Bible)

Falling Away (Clinging to more comfortable, less exacting, teachings about Jesus!)

"Therefore leaving the elementary teaching about the Christ and pressing on to perfection... this we shall do, if God permits. For in the case of those who have once been enlightened and have tasted of the heavenly gift and have been made partakers of the Holy Spirit, and have tasted the good word of God and the powers of the age to come, and then have fallen away, it is impossible to renew them again to repentance, while they again crucify to themselves the Son of God, and put Him to open shame."

Hebrews 6:1, 3-6

Turning Back When Times are Difficult

"Consider it all joy... when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result (Lit. work), that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing."

James 1:2-4

"... do not reject the discipline (or instruction) of the Lord, or loathe His reproof, for whom the Lord loves He reproves, even as a father, the son in whom he delights."

Proverbs 3:11, 12

"'My son, do not regard lightly the discipline of the Lord,
Nor faint when you are reproved by Him;
For those whom the Lord loves He disciplines,
And scourges every son He receives.'

It is for discipline that you endure; God deals with you as sons, for what son is there whom his father does not discipline. But if you are without discipline, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate children and not sons... He disciplines us for out good, that we may share His holiness. All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful but sorrowful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterward it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness."

Hebrews 12:5-8, 10, 11

"Those I {dearly and tenderly} love, I tell their faults and convict and convince and reprove and chasten. {I discipline and instruct them.} So be enthusiastic and in earnest and burning with zeal and repent {changing your mind and attitude}."

Revelations 3:19 (Amplified Bible)

Weighted Down

"Be on guard, that your hearts may not be weighted down with... the worries of life..."

Luke 21:34

"Do not lay up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in an steal. But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in and steal; for where your treasure is, there will your heart be also."

Matthew 6:19-21

"You cannot serve God and riches.

For this reason I say to you, stop being anxious for your life, as to what you shall eat, or what you shall drink; nor for your body, as to what you shall put on. Is not life more that food, and the body than clothing? ...And which of you by being anxious can add a single cubit to his life's span? But continually seek His kingdom and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added to you."

Matthew 6:24, 25, 27, 33

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