What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?
God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?
Ro 6:2

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Final Perseverance of the Saints
By Elder William Vanhorn circa 1791

The circular Letter of 1791, written by Elder Wm. Vanhorn, treats of the final perseverance of the saints, and contains the following paragraph:

 “We exclude, in the consideration of this subject, all false professors of religion, of every description, whatever may be their attainments, as in the grace of knowledge, talents or tongues, and power of working miracles who, nevertheless, are and continue destitute of the renewing grace of God.  Hence, those who have made a fair show in religion for a time, as the foolish virgins, Matthew 25; the branches who were in the true vine, either by profession only, or in relation to Abraham, John 25.  Those who in a sense may have tasted of the good word of God, as the stony-ground hearers, Matthew 23; or as Herod, who heard John gladly, Matthew 6:20.  Those who may have embraced the doctrine of the gospel, frequently styled, ‘The Faith,’ in the New Testament, Acts 24:24; 1 Timothy 1:21; 2 Timothy 3:8; as Hymeneus and Alexander, who in time made shipwreck thereof, 1 Timothy 1:20.  Those who have been enlightened, and had the gift of prophecy, as Balaam, 1 Cor 13:2; or who had the gift of tongues-power to work miracles, and as such tasted of the powers of the world to come, or of the gospel dispensation, as Judas, Hebrews 6:5-all such we exclude-of all such there is no sufficient evidence that any of them were renewed by the grace of God, but of many of them the fullest testimony that they were not.  We therefore cannot plead their perseverance in grace, which they never had; nor can such instances of defection, with any propriety, be produced as objections to the doctrine of the final perseverance of the saints.  We assert that those only will persevere in the way of eternal life and attain unto it, in whom the regenerating grace of God has or will take place.  This fact is proved by the everlasting love of God to His people; by the covenant of grace, ordered in all things and sure; redemption by Jesus Christ; the charge He has taken of His people; the promises of the gospel; the perfections of God; His immutability, justice, power, wisdom, faithfulness and truth all engaged to bring the heirs of grace, through perseverance therein, to glory.  The doctrine of the perseverance of the saints in grace is not the doctrine of their perseverance in wickedness-is not a licentious doctrine.  How shall they, who are dead to sin, live any longer therein?  Romans 6:1-2.

Elder C.B. Hassell and Elder Sylvester Hassell, History of the Church of God Published 1885 (Georgia: Reprinted by Old School Hymnal Co., 1983), p566-567.

 
 

 

 

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