Robert McLaughlin Bible Ministries

Arizona Conference 2006. Part 4. The Church at Sardis.

Saturday PM, January 21, 2006

Because these people cleaned their own robes, by confession and appropriation of the blood of the Lamb and living in the perception, metabolization and application of Bible doctrine, their garments are not soiled.

The washing of the robes does not refer to regeneration and justification, which depends upon God, but to progressive sanctification, which depends upon God and us.

The “garments” refer not to the imputed righteousness of Christ but to the “righteous acts of the saints,” REV 19:8.

Can a believer lose his salvation?
Could one of God’s children be blotted out of the book of life?

Some say that those who have been saved by Christ’s redemption, can fall away and be lost forever. This is the classical Arminian position.

Our justification in God’s sight is not based on our works but on the perfect, finished righteousness and substitutionary atonement of Jesus Christ, JOH 3:16; JOH 10:27-30, ROM 8:29-30.

Blotting names from the book of life is never applicable to a believer in Christ because believers are secure in Him, being kept by the power of God, 1PE 1:5, and held secure in both the hand of the Son and of the Father,JOH 10:28-30.

“He who overcomes” –
“ho nikon” = “The winner.” Winners are described in Rev 2-3 by the pres-act-part of nikao, REV 2:7,11,17,26; 3:5,12,21.

It is translated “overcomes” because it is a participle used as a noun and it means to subdue, to conquer, to overcome, to get the victory.

Nike was the name of a Greek goddess who is often represented in art as a symbol of personal superiority.

To be an overcomer was to be victorious in both military and legal combat, a perfect analogy to spiritual warfare and the appeal trial of Satan in the angelic conflict.

Name – neuter singular noun – “onoma” = a title, fame, a reputation, authority, character and integrity.

It refers to the title that our Lord inherited because of His strategic victory in the angelic conflict – King of kings and Lord of lords.

Williams translation
“Thus proving Himself to be as much superior to angels as the title He has inherited is superior to theirs”

The name reflected the character and integrity of an individual which is why many individuals had their name changed as they matured.

Winner believers and those who receive the uniform of glory will be able to eat of the Tree of Life in the middle of the Paradise of God, REV 2:7.

The winner believer who has received the uniform of glory will also be a member of the paradise club forever, including three special privileges: eating from the Tree of Life, access to the Gazebo in the Garden, access to the Paradise of God, REV 2:7.

Hermeneutics is the science and methodology of interpreting the Scriptures.

The first mention principle is that principle by which God indicates in the first mention of a subject, the truth with which that subject stands connected in the mind of God.

Dr. A. T. Pierson – “This is a law we have long since noted, and have never yet found it to fail. The first occurrence of a word, expression, or utterance, is the key to its subsequent meaning, or it will be a guide to ascertaining the essential truth connected with it.”

Newton said, “I find in Scripture this principle of interpretation, which I believe, if conscientiously adopted, will serve as an unfailing guide to what was in the mind of God.”

We find 13 in Scripture used in connection with rebellion. All through Scripture 13 is a number that has in it the note of rebellion against God. It foreshadows apostasy.

There is the subtlety of Satan, GEN 3:1.
Expect subtlety every time you meet him, 2CO 11:3.

There is the business of Satan indicated in the first words recorded, “Indeed, has God said, ‘You shall not eat from any tree of the garden’?”

The first words recorded of our Lord were –
LUK 2:49 “Did you not know that I had to be about my Father’s business?”

HEB 10:7 “Behold, I have come to do Thy will, O God.”

The first time the phrase the “tree of life” is mentioned is found in GEN 2:9.

This usage therefore suggests a quality of life – rich fellowship with God – rather than the notion of regeneration.

Regenerate life comes to all “without cost,” REV 22:17, but the “tree of life” is presented as a conditionally earned and merited reward going to those who have not only received eternal life without cost but who also at great cost to themselves have overcome and persevered.

Partaking of the tree of life in REV 2:7 and REV 22:14 is a conditional experience of the Christian who has not had his name blotted out of the book of life.

Because the right to eat of the tree of life is conditional, it is highly unlikely that this experience refers to regeneration, which several verses later is presented by John as offered to all “without cost” on the basis of believing, REV 22:17.

Obtaining the right to eat of the tree of life is conditioned upon works and only those who have not had their names or inheritance blotted out of the book of life will enjoy this privilege to the maximum.

Since eating is commonly a symbol for “fellowship,”
REV 3:20, it is probable that all that is meant is that those who live godly and pure lives now will enjoy a special fellowship with Christ throughout eternity.

REV 2:11 the winner believer will not be hurt by the Second death because of blessing by association.

It is very emphatic in Greek; a double negative (ou me) is used.
This expression is used to express categorical and emphatic denials.

a. He will not be hurt by the second death,
REV 20:6,11.

b. Even if they take your physical life, they can never touch your eternal destiny, 1TI 6:12; 2TI 4:7.

c. God is the one who imputes soul-life to the body, and therefore because of the doctrine of blessing because of association, the winner believer experiences no hurt from the second death from his loved ones.

JOB 5:25 You will know also that your descendants will be prosperous, And your offspring as the grass of the earth.

DEU 28:4 “Blessed shall be the offspring of your body”

REV 2:17 – the believer who does not have his name blotted out of the book of life shall eat of the hidden manna and receive a new name on a white stone.

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