70 Myths on losing salvation (11): Be Cut Off as a worthless branch.

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Recently I found an interesting blog which states that we can lose our salvation in 70 ways. For the complete list of the 70 “ways”, kindly refer to:https://hischarisisenough.wordpress.com/2012/06/06/70-ways-of-losing-your-salvation-1-stop-believing-luke-813/ 

 

You will find links to the rest of the myths at the end of this article. Please refer to them after your finish this  article.

Warning! This article will change your life! If you do not wish to be set free from the dread of thinking you can lose your salvation. Don’t read! BUT… if you want to be absolute sure, then be bless and read this very long article. Hey, take pity on me who spent 3 nights preparing it. It’s worth it. I promise you. This is because the Gardener of Eden wants me to share this with you. So despite it being very long, it will bless you and completely set you free from the fear of God!

 

Myth 11: Be cut off as a worthless branch; withered, hewn down, and cast into the fire if you don’t bear good fruit and abide in Christ  Mat 3:10; Matt 7:19; John 15:6

There are actually 3 distinct verses quoted by the writer here. On first reading they seem to say that God will do away with trees which are not fruitful. These branches are thus cut-off. The writer of smashingidols7.wordpress.com submits that if a believer is not fruitful then he will be cut off from the kingdom of God.

Let’s look at the 3 verses.

Matthew 3:10

New International Version (NIV)

10 The ax is already at the root of the trees, and every tree that does not produce good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire.

Matthew 7:19

New International Version (NIV)

19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.

John 15:6

New International Version (NIV)

If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned.

I want us to consider one more verse which is relevant. Let us consider:

John 15:2

New International Version (NIV)

He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes[a] so that it will be even more fruitful.

I think you would immediately note there is a difference between the references in John and those in Matthew.

Matthew refers to trees whereas John refers to branches. Thus the meaning and context of the verses referred to in Matthew and John are different.

Let’s tackle the references in Matthew first. It must first be noted that the Gospel of Matthew is written to the Jews and to tell them the Messiah is here. It is also to tell them there is a transition of ages. An age where the Law of Moses ends and the age of God’s favourable year begin. The age of grace.

Jesus who announced “Until John the Baptist, the law of Moses and the messages of the prophets were your guides. But now the Good News of the Kingdom of God is preached, and everyone is eager to get in.” Luke 16:16. Note Jesus at the beginning of the ministry also said:

Luke 4:18-20

New International Version (NIV)

18 “The Spirit of the Lord is on me, 
    because he has anointed me
    to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners
    and recovery of sight for the blind,
to set the oppressed free,
19     to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”[a]

20 Then he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant and sat down. The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fastened on him.

This is what John meant in John 3:28-30

28 You yourselves can testify that I said, ‘I am not the Messiah but am sent ahead of him.’ 29 The bride belongs to the bridegroom. The friend who attends the bridegroom waits and listens for him, and is full of joy when he hears the bridegroom’s voice. That joy is mine, and it is now complete. 30 He must become greater; I must become less.”[h]

Now let us turn to Matthew 3.

John’s clothes were made of camel’s hair, and he had a leather belt around his waist. His food was locusts and wild honey. People went out to him from Jerusalem and all Judea and the whole region of the Jordan. Confessing their sins, they were baptized by him in the Jordan River.

But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming to where he was baptizing, he said to them: “You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the coming wrathProduce fruit in keeping with repentanceAnd do not think you can say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father.’ I tell you that out of these stones God can raise up children for Abraham. 10 The ax is already at the root of the trees, and every tree that does not produce good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire.

Here’s something surprising…. The ax is at the root of the trees, not of the sinners but of the Pharisees and Sadducees! It is their fruit that stinks! Hold on, these are keepers of the Law and people who served full time in God’s ministries at that time. Like Paul, they are faultless when it comes to the Law.

Smashingidols is his articles points to salvation by strict obedience by keeping the Law. Many churches also do that. Keep the commandments or be thrown into the Lake of the Fire. But that the fruit of failure of repentance of the Pharisees and Sadducees. They are called the “fruit that does not keep with repentance!!!”

Dear friends, the Pharisees are probably the most “holy” people on earth. Paul when boasting about righteousness which he had from the Law of Moses said, he was faultless. Yet when he speaks about this righteousness which came from the Law, he calls it “refuse” “dung” and for a better word, pardon the profanity “SHIT!”

Are you surprised?

Well don’t be. Let’s go to Matthew 7 and again let’s look at the context.

A Tree and Its Fruit

15“Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. 16By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? 17Likewise every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. 18A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. 19Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.20Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them.

Who is Jesus referring to?

Who are these wolves and what are the fruit are they producing? What are these trees which Jesus which to throw into the fire?

It is easy to misread the passage. “A wolf in sheep skin” is traditionally interpreted as being a person who is being deceitful, dishonest and not to be trusted. As sheep are adult lambs and wolves are known to attack lambs, the message here is this person would like to appear to be just another lamb to deceive someone, but in reality he is waiting and hoping to attack the sheep.

While this may be right, to attach it to a grace believer shows complete shallow understanding. Firstly, you will know a wolf not from its fruit but from the tree. Jesus here is saying that you will know the condition of the fruit and the tree the fruit comes from. He is NOT talking about the conduct of the person but rather the condition of the tree. If the fruit is good, it must come from a good tree. Note Jesus is comparing a good fruit with thorns and figs. That, to him is bad fruit. Thorns and figs are symbols of human effort and self-righteousness.

In other words, the emphasis here is not the fruit he produces but rather the TREE the fruit comes from. It is important to note that there are fundamentally only 2 trees in the Bible: The tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.The tree of life is Jesus’ kind of righteousness whereas the tree of knowledge of good and evil represents righteousness through human effort.

If you read the above statements in context, Jesus is addressing the Pharisees as being the wolf in sheep skins. The prostitutes, sinners and tax collectors are called His sheep. As such, a “wolf in sheep skin” is a person who comes and tells you, you are not good enough for God unless you perform your religious duties or to try to be righteous by doing good works.

Are you shocked?

You see when God planted 2 trees in the middle of the Garden of Eden, He said one would lead to life and the other death. The tree which leads to death is called the tree of good and evil. Good and Evil? Nope, it is called the KNOWLEDGE of Good and Evil. It is the tree of the Law. That is why the minute Adam and Eve took of it, they felt condemnation, the loss of favour and the loss of glory. So they were cursed to work for survival and to sustain themselves. Paul says “curse is a man on a tree.” In that reference in Galatians that curse came from the Law. See Galatians 3:

10 For all who rely on the works of the law are under a curse, as it is written: “Cursed is everyone who does not continue to do everything written in the Book of the Law.”[e] 11 Clearly no one who relies on the law is justified before God, because “the righteous will live by faith.”[f] 12 The law is not based on faith; on the contrary, it says, “The person who does these things will live by them.”[g] 13 Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us, for it is written: “Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree.”

As such what is this tree God wanted to chop down and throw into the fire? It is the tree of the Law. This is because the tree of life is already here. Who is he?

On each side of the river stood the tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit, yielding its fruit every month. And the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations. Revelation 22:2

He is Jesus. God wants to tree of life to be shared to give healing to the nation of Israel and the rest of the world. Jesus.

So the tree that leads to non-repentance is actually the Law. That is the tree of the Wolves! John and Jesus are saying the age of the Law, Self Righteousness is coming to an end. That is the tree that he will be chopping down. It has nothing to do with Christians.

Let’s look at John. Note that Jesus here is the vine. He is referring to the grape vine. In such a situation the grape is the tree and the branches its extension. It must be note that there is a difference between John 15:2 and John 15:6. In John 15:2 the tree which remains in him is “cut-off” but there is no casting into the fire. John 15:6 refers to people who do not abide in Jesus and they are thrown into the fire. Bet you did not notice that.

Let’s look at that reference again:

15 “I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes[a] so that it will be even more fruitfulYou are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.

“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.

“As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. 10 If you keep my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and remain in his love.

Note something very important here. Jesus did not say that you will be a branch that will be thrown away, he says the person who does not abide will be thrown away. Dear friends, let us look at the person in verse 6 he does not abide. The person in verse 2 is in him! He is the one abiding in Jesus. Please note abiding carries a very different meaning in gardener’s terms. Paul says we are grafted into Christ.

Let me explain what it means.

First a “sick” branch is “cut-off” from a sick tree. Then, a part of the “good and healthy” tree is cut to allow the sick tree, so that the “sick” branch may be inserted into the “good” tree. The “good” tree is “wounded” for the sake of the “sick” branch. The “sick” branch is inserted into the “wounds” of the “good” tree. Then the “sick” branch is joint together and left for days together by wrapping the “wound” of the good tree together. While they are held together, the “sick” branch receives life, food and strength from the “wounds” of the “good tree”. After sometime, the gardener removes the wrapping and discover that the “sick” branch and the “good” tree have become one.

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That my friend is what Jesus did for you. We were sick in sin. Sickness to Jesus is not a crime but a disease. Remember He did say, “It is the sick that needs a doctor, I have called the sinners to repentance.” And what a way to repent! He was wounded for our transgressions and by his wounds we are healed! That my friend is how we are “abided into Christ”. We are grafted into him.

Please allow the great Paul Ellis explain in his article here: http://escapetoreality.org/2011/06/08/john-15v6_abide-in-the-vine/

Here’s the explanation: “But what does it mean to abide or remain in Him? That sounds as if Jesus is putting conditions on us. It sounds like He is saying, you have to do something otherwise you’ll be tossed and burned. But what is the something we must do? I guarantee you that any list of somethings that man comes up with will include keep short accounts with God or confess your sins. This is a classic example of watering down scripture to accommodate human shortcomings. You want something to do? Try this:

“Whoever abides in Him does not sin.” (1 Jn 3:6, NKJV)

What does God expect of those who abide in Him? Zero sin! Yet many people believe, “whoever abides in Him may sin occasionally – after all, we’re only human – but as long as we quickly confess our sin God will be faithful and just and forgive us our sin.” Well God is faithful and just but you can’t use His goodness to wriggle out of 1 John 3:6. You can’t lower His standards to accommodate your less-than-perfect performance.

A line in the sand

I occasionally get emails from people who are opposed to the gospel of grace. They say we must do everything in the Bible or at least everything that Jesus says. Well Jesus said, “be perfect” (Mt 5:8) – how’s that working out for you? I might just as easily respond with the words of John:

“No one who lives in him keeps on sinning. No one who continues to sin has either seen him or known him.” (1 Jn 3:6, NIV)

I love this! This verse deals life to those who trust Jesus and utter condemnation to those who don’t. It draws a big fat line in the sand and shouts, “Choose your Savior!” To those who are trusting in their own good behavior this verse declares, “Your best is not good enough. God expects sinless perfection.” Either you must be perfect or you must put your faith in a perfect, representative. Guess who! Jesus is our perfect High Priest (Heb 7:28)! We stand on His sinless performance, not our own.

A promise, not a condition

Jesus told the disciples, you are in me (our imperfections are hidden in His perfection) and I am in you (we carry His sinless DNA). Jesus didn’t sin and He won’t ever sin. If you let Him live His life through you, then without any conscious effort on your part you’re going to start talking and acting just like sinless Jesus. This is a glorious promise for all who believe:

“Whoever has been born of God does not sin, for His seed remains in him; and he cannot sin, because he has been born of God.” (1 Jn 3:9)

So what does it mean to abide in the vine? Here’s the answer we’ve all been waiting for…

“Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God.” (1 Jn 4:15)

Have you confessed that Jesus is the Son of God? Then God abides in you and you in Him. You may wonder, But how did this happen? All I did was confess. Well you could not have believed and confessed Jesus as Lord unless the Holy Spirit had led you to do so (1 Cor 12:3). The work and the glory are all His. Rest in that!

The trouble is, you can’t rest because somewhere inside there is a little voice that’s asking, Can I abide today and not abide tomorrow? Can I be in the vine one moment and cut off the next? Why would Jesus tell his disciples to abide if there wasn’t any danger of not abiding?

The problem, as usual, is found between our ears. Most of us have grown up with a slave mentality that says our value is determined by what we do. This was certainly true of the disciples who had been born and bred under the law. They were conditioned to think in terms of their performance. This works mindset is also evident in some of our English translations:

“Remain in me, and I will remain in you.” (Jn 15:4, NIV)

Again, that sounds like a condition. It sounds like Jesus is saying, if your abiding performance is up to scratch, then I will reward you by abiding as well. But it is not a condition to make us sweat; it is a promise to make us rest. In John 15 Jesus goes to great lengths to counter the law-mentality of the disciples. He does this by hitting them with promise after promise:

“As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love.” (Jn 15:9)

How does the Father love Jesus? Ask yourself this question: How many miracles or works had Jesus done when the Father declared from heaven, “this is my beloved Son?” None! The Father loves Jesus unconditionally, without any reference to His performance or fruit. That means that Jesus loves usunconditionally! He wants us to rest in His unconditional love.

You’re free? Be free!

Just to recap – if you think abiding is something we must do, then understand that the evidence of abiding is zero sin. This is humanly impossible. The only logical response to the command “abide!” is to trust in Jesus and His performance and quit trying to impress Him with yours. The word “abide” connotes “rest” and “surrender,” not “struggle” and “try harder.”

Trust God, the abiding issue is all settled from His side. “Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him.” But it may not be settled from your side. You may still be struggling with that old servant mentality. Instead of rest there is insecurity. Instead of joy there is anxiety. Am I in? Can I be cut off? If this is you, let Jesus speak to your insecurity:

“I tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave to sin. Now a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.” (Jn 8:34-36)

The reality is, you are free indeed because Jesus has set you free. The reality is, you are abiding in the vine because you have confessed Him as Lord. But you may not be experiencing that reality. You may feel like you’re not free or you’re not abiding. Although you are a son with a permanent place in the family, you may still think and act like the slave that you used to be. There’s only one solution: renew your mind! Stop living by feelings and start walking by faith. You are abiding in fact, so start abiding in practice.”

When Jesus said, “anyone who does not abide in Me is cast out as a branch, withers, and is thrown into the fire,” He was not referring to fruitless Christians. He was describing those who refuse to believe to that He is the Son of God. He was describing those who are looking for life outside of the true vine. If you have confessed Jesus as your Lord, then walk in that the truth: You are free, God Himself abides in you, and as a son or daughter you have a permanent place in His family. Thank you Jesus!”

That’s verse 6. Let’s deal with verse 2 now.

Verse 2 deals with the person in Jesus. Yet he is “cut-off” . Yes but what is the reason that he is “cut-off”? So that he produces more fruit, Jesus said. You say that’s crazy Simon, how can a fruit be cut-off?

This is where the problem is. Note Jesus said this person is already cleansed and cleansed by his word. How can a cleansed man be “cut-off” and bear fruit? The answer is simple bad translation!!!!

Look at the word “cut-off” in Greek.

airō

Thayer Definition:

1) to raise up, elevate, lift up

1a) to raise from the ground, take up: stones

1b) to raise upwards, elevate, lift up: the hand

1c) to draw up: a fish

2) to take upon one’s self and carry what has been raised up, to bear.

To raise up!

They are not cut off – that is a bad translation that would’ve made no sense to a Mediterranean listener! A viticulturalist would never throw away a branch for that would be like amputating part of the vine. (If you’re thinking of suckers, see my note in the comments below.) Unfruitful branches are lifted out of the dirt and re-dressed so they can be nourished by the sun.

Dear friend are you not encouraged. He does not cut you off. He lifts you up. Remember it is when you bear fruit, God is glorified, so it is job of the heavenly gardener to make sure you bear fruit!

What is the remedy for unfruitful branches? God is. He is the Gardener who does the lifting up. He is not there to slash and burn but to prune and lift. As you begin to bear fruit it will be for His glory, not yours. If you’ve been distracted doing the dead works of religion, just stop and come back to your first love which is His love.

Aren’t you amazed that God operates this way – through people? It’s like God is saying, “I believe in you. I have confidence that you will come to rest in my love and allow me to reveal myself to you and through you.” Carnal religion says it’s all about you and your faith so you’d better perform, but the gospel of grace declares it’s about Him and His faith so rest! Paul understood this which is why he said, “the life I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God who loved me” (Gal 2:20).

Branches can not bear fruit but vines can and do so naturally, without any effort. As a branch you carry the nature of the True Vine in you and He will bear His fruit through you.

“You Raise Me Up”

When I am down and, oh my soul, so weary;
When troubles come and my heart burdened be;
Then, I am still and wait here in the silence,
Until you come and sit awhile with me.

You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains;
You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas;
I am strong, when I am on your shoulders;
You raise me up… To more than I can be.

You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains;
You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas;
I am strong, when I am on your shoulders;
You raise me up… To more than I can be.

There is no life – no life without its hunger;
Each restless heart beats so imperfectly;
But when you come and I am filled with wonder,
Sometimes, I think I glimpse eternity.

You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains;
You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas;
I am strong, when I am on your shoulders;
You raise me up… To more than I can be.

You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains;
You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas;
I am strong, when I am on your shoulders;
You raise me up… To more than I can be.

You raise me up… To more than I can be.

 

Thank you Jesus!

 

That’s myth 11. Here are the rest!

For myth No. 2, please go to: https://hischarisisenough.wordpress.com/2012/06/09/70-myths-about-losing-salvation-myth-no-2-hardening-your-heart-hebrews-312-13-3/

 

For myth No. 3, 20 and 50 please refer to:https://hischarisisenough.wordpress.com/2012/06/09/70-myths-about-losing-salvation-myth-3-and-20-you-can-lose-your-salvation-if-you-shrink-back-and-when-you-sin-willfully-3/

 

For myth No: 4 please refer to:https://hischarisisenough.wordpress.com/2012/06/11/70-myths-on-losing-salvation-4-doctrine-of-demons-3/

 

For myth No: 5 please see:https://hischarisisenough.wordpress.com/2012/06/11/70-myths-on-losing-salvation-5-turning-away-to-satan-1-tim-515-2-2/

 

For myth No. 6: https://hischarisisenough.wordpress.com/2012/06/12/70-myths-on-losing-salvation-shipwrecking-your-faith-2/

 

For myth No. 7: https://hischarisisenough.wordpress.com/2012/06/14/70-myths-on-losing-salvation-7-spat-out-for-being-lukewarm-5-2/

 

Myth No. 8: https://hischarisisenough.wordpress.com/2012/06/15/70-myths-on-losing-your-salvation-8-being-sexually-immoral-or-godless-like-esau-4/

 

Myth No. 9: https://hischarisisenough.wordpress.com/2012/06/15/70-myths-on-losing-salvation-9-being-castaway-1-cor-927/

 

Myth N0. 10: https://hischarisisenough.wordpress.com/2012/06/16/70-myths-on-losing-salvation-10-becoming-worthless-salt-good-for-nothing-but-to-be-cast-out-and-trodden-underfoot-of-men-matt-513-9-2/

6 Comments

  1. Thanks for pointing out the tree vs branch. I admit that I sort allude to this because I cannot explain it yet. After reading this, I think I have a better view of this part of the Scripture in my study.

  2. @”Jesus is addressing the Pharisees as being the wolf in sheep skins. The prostitutes, sinners and tax collectors are called His sheep. As such, a “wolf in sheep skin” is a person who comes and tells you, you are not good enough for God unless you perform your religious duties or to try to be righteous by doing good works”
    ……….

    what a revelation!

    at one point, I used to think that those who teaches mixture, grace and law
    are descendants of pharisees. but was afraid to share that thought to anyone.

    you nailed it! indeed they are in sheeps clothing
    they look like smell like and sound like christians

    ………….

    John 15:2
    “He CUTS off every branch in me that bears no fruit,”

    the greek word for CUTS OFF is

    airó: to raise, take up, lift
    .

    so it can mean that the branch of a grape vine is lifted up to bear fruit
    the branch becomes dusty and needs to be clean with water

    .

    but

    John 15:6
    “If anyone does not remain in me, he is like a branch that
    is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up,
    thrown into the fire and burned.”

    the greek word for Trown is

    balló: to throw, cast
    .

    so it can mean that those who are thrown into the fire are those not
    wolves in sheeps clothing. they look like, smell like, sound like christians

    is that the reason why Jesus says “By their fruit you will know them?”

    therefore, the fakes are those who bear a different fruit different from the tree
    the ugly duckling who though himself to be a swan!

    lovely post brother! I need to hear message like this everyday. and not that
    junks that says I am not save because i failed this and that!

    awesome! long comment. sorry 🙂

    – grace and peace be multiplied to you. amen

  3. this is goooooooooooood revelation hahahaha 😀

    That’s the truth that will set people free 😀

    thanks Bro. Simon you are anointed!

    grace and peace be multiplied to you as savedbygrace said 🙂

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