Is God An “Indian Giver?” – Lesson Notes

(I Cor. 9:24-27)



  * Obedience to God is man’s responsibility. Ideas of “Perseverance of the Saints” or “Once Saved Always Saved” false!

   * Acts 2:40; Phil. 2:12; Titus 1:2; Heb. 5:8-9.

   * One denominational writer even said the Lord’s church teaches that God is an “Indian Giver.”


1. God is not an “Indian Giver.”

   * Man forfeits the contract w/God! Bible warns of falling away! (I Cor. 10:12; I Cor. 9:27; I Tim. 4:1)

   * Some did fall away

            * Judas – Acts 1:25, Jn. 17:12

            * Other disciples – Jn. 6:66

            * Hymenaeus & Philetus – II Tim. 2:16-18

            * Some went back to Judaism – Heb. 6:4-6

            * Churches of Galatia fell from grace – Gal 5:4

   * We’re saved by grace (Eph. 2:8); we can fall from grace (Gal. 5:4).

   * Some will embrace teaching of Christ then fall away. Parable of sower (Luke 8:14-15).

   * Buying a car – car not really yours until last payment is made.

   * Man is saved by grace through faith when he complies w/terms of salvation (Heb. 5:9).

   * Covenant relationship w/God has conditions (I Cor. 15:58).

   * Man has hope of eternal life (Titus 1:2; Rom. 8:24). Salvation in hope to Christians, not yet in reality.

   * Forfeiting one’s faith is a possibility. Paul continually pressed toward the mark (Phil. 3:11-14).


2. God is immutable (unchanging).

   * Malachi 3:6: “For I am the Lord, I change not.”

   * I Corinthians 1:9: “God is faithful.”

   * God will always save the righteous and always condemn the wicked (Nah. 1:3; II Peter 2:9).


3. The Bible makes the case for salvation being conditional.

   * Col. 1:21&23 – “enemies” have been reconciled. Dependent on them being “in the faith” & unmoved from gospel.

   * Jas. 5:16-20 – “...if any of you do err from the truth, and one convert him... he which converteth the sinner from the

      error of his way shall save a soul from death...” Teaches the possibility of apostasy!

   * Denominationalists claim: “He was never saved to begin with!” Not true! We can: “err from the truth” (Jas. 5:19);

      fall from grace” (Gal. 5:4); be “removed” (Gal. 1:6). A person can’t be removed from a place he never was!

   * II Peter 2:20-22 – People are entangled in sin because they left it but have returned to it! (Illustration – sow & dog).

   * Acts 8:5-23 – Simon was baptized, became a Christian, but sinned and jeopardized his salvation.

   * Church at Ephesus left their “first love” (Rev. 2:4-5).

   * We can fall and must “take heed” (I Cor. 10:12; Heb. 3:12) and “beware” (Col. 2:8).

   * Add the Christian graces to our lives to help prevent falling (II Pet. 1:5-11).

   * If we sin and fall away from God, we can come back! (Acts 8:20-22; Jas. 5:19-20).

   * Sin is transgression of the law (I Jn. 3:4).

   * Even Christians sin (I Jn. 1:8-10).

   * Wages of sin is death (Rom. 6:23).


Do you need to repent? Do you realize that God will welcome the return of the prodigal (Luke 15)? He will certainly welcome the obedience of the alien sinner, for He sent His only Son to die for all humanity (John 3:16). Make your life right tonight and be secure in the knowledge of your salvation!


                                                                                                                                    R.W. McAlister  7/6/08 p.m.