Are The Resurrection/Rapture church saints 
                                        Under Law, or Grace? 
                                                    ( part one)
                                                 (By Tom Gaston)    
section titles:
1. Getting started
2. Law or grace, which is it?
3. Israel's prophetic time
4. No flesh shall be justified by the Law
5. What does this all mean?
6. Can a believer ever be "unsealed" by the Holy Spirit?
 Introductional commments
  The reason why I have titled this article "Are The Resurrection/Rapture Church Saints Under Law, Or Grace" is because there are so many who are seeking to "earn their right" to be a participant in this event when It happens.  Nothing could be farther from the truth!  Many are terribly confused because they have not learned important foundational truths concerning Law, grace, justificaton etc.  Therefore this subject is of great importance to me.  Hopefully with God's help I can reach a few in order to help set them free from the unecessary fear and confusion that has beset them through a lack of understanding of the word of God.
  Since this article will be lengthy, I have decided to do it in (two parts).  Do not let the length of this article discourage you from reading and prayfully studying it.   It will be an "Eye Opener" for perhaps many?  The "Resurrection/Rapture" subject that we will be discussing is not one that can be properly examined by just 3 or 4 pages of material.  I will be covering the resurrection/Rapture text in 1Thessalonians 4:13-18 later in (part two).  In (part 2) I will be presenting some simple, but yet "profound observations" of this text which cannot be argued, scooted around, ignored, nor denied unless some one is foolish and brave enough to make an attempt to rewrite all the New Testament epistles, as well as the gospels.
  In (Part one) I will be covering the subject of "Law and Grace" which is extremely important and absolutely foundational for understanding of this subject of God's resurrection program.  The question of "who goes and who stays" at the time of the Rapture is clearly revealed in this foundational study of "Law and Grace."  Without this foundation many will never understand (part 2) of this study.  Therefore I am encouraging those who have difficulty with the teaching of "the security of the believer", and also who are advocates of the "partial rapture theory" not to skip (part 1) and jump to (part 2).  Otherwise you will not understand, nor will you see the final picture of truth at the end of (part 2). 
  Until a Christian understands their position "In christ" (by grace through faith apart from works / Eph. 2:8-10;   Titus 3:4-7)  they will always be confused and will most likely never understand this subject of the resurrection/Rapture in its proper context.  Don't just read this article, study it!  Look up many of the scriptures that will be listed in it.  As you do pray that God will give you understanding of His word.  Ask Him to show the "His truth and nothing but His truth."  If you approach this study with a sincere heart before God,  and If you are a true believer by faith alone in Christ, then you have the Holy Spirit within you (Eph. 1:13).  He is your teacher who will show you His truth (John 14:16-26;  15:26;   16:7-14).
  I would like to also say this.  When we conclude with this study the "partial rapture theory", which is based on good works is going to go "Flying right out the window" into oblivion where it belongs!  This false teaching has No place in God's word!  If anyone walks away from this study still confused, still adhering to, and holding on to this make believe doctrine which God, the Holy Spirit, and the apostle Paul have NEVER TAUGHT in scripture!  Then with great concern and urgency I recommend that you get on your knees and honestly examine your hearts before God in order to see if your are truly in the faith (2 Cor. 13:5).  Are you trying to be justified by the works of the Law?  Are you trying to earn your way into heaven at the time of the resurrection/ Rapture?  I don't know your heart, only God does.  You are the only one who can answer these questions!
  What unlearned Christians as well as non-Christians do not understand in the bible, the devil stands by waiting to give them "His own perverted interpretation"
Getting started
  The title of this article is an important question that needs to be asked and addressed with the word of God once and for all!   There is too much unnecessary confusion on this subject of the Resurrection/Rapture of the church in relationship to "who will go" and "who will stay" when this event happens.  This therefore brings deep concern to my heart for those souls who think that they can "earn their right" to be a participant in the resurrection program of God by way of their "Godly character, good moral conduct, good works, etc
  Now If this were the case, which it is not.  Then it would mean that these people could therefore earn their own right to enter into the presence of God in heaven through their acts of obedience to religious laws,  or by their own ethical standards of moral character and conduct.  Those "in Christ" who die before the resurrection are allowed into the presence of God, not based on their good works, but by grace through faith (Eph. 2:8-10).  Those who are "alive" when the resurrection takes place likewise are allowed entry into the presence of God, NOT because of their works, but because they were saved by grace through faith in Christ.  God's scriptural guide lines, rules, and requirements concerning man's salvation apply not only to those who have already died in Christl.   But they also apply to the "living in Christ" now, and at the time of Christ's appearing!
 The Bible is emphatically clear that "No flesh will be justified in His sight by the Law" (Rom.3:20;   Eph.2:8-10;   Titus 3:4-7).  those people who trying to earn their right "into heaven" at the time of the resurrection are trying to achieve a glorified body by their "works of moral and religious character", which have become "a law" to them.  They are seeking God's favor for the purpose of "qualifying" entry into God's presence.  This is there whole problem with these people!
  Godly character can only be acheived and practiced by the believer who is said to be "in Christ" according to the scriptures. The Holy Spirit comes to indwell the believer at the moment of his or her coversion to Christ (Eph.1:13).  It is God through His Holy Spirit who empowers the saint for Godly and faithful service (Eph.2:10;  Phil.1:6,  2:13).   When those who are "in Christ" surrender themselves to the leading of the Holy Spirit the fruit of the Holy Spirit then manifests itself in and through them (Gal.5:16:25) as they walk in obedience to Christ.  The fact is, the bible is clear in Rom. 8:7 that no one who is "in the flesh" is capable of keeping the Law of God.  Scripture says that if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, they do not belong to Him.  (Rom.8:9).   
  If the Holy Spirit is not indwelling a person,  then they have never been saved, nor do they have the power to live for Christ, since they are "Dead in sins" (Rom. 3:10,11, 23;  6:23;    Eph.2:1-7;   Col.2:9-14).   Thus it is important to know and understand that the only criteria mentioned and taught by the apostle Paul in the New Testament epistles,  which allows a Christian to be a participant in the resurrection/Rapture is that one must possess the Holy Spirit of Christ (Rom.8:9-16;   Eph.4:30;   1Thess.4:16), which is received at that moment that they trust in Christ (Eph. 1:13-14).
  This subject of the resurrection of the church saints needs to be taught and understood through the pages of scripture and should not be approached nor taught by emotionally charged driven people who are confused on the subject, and who teach that a christian must earn their right to to receive their glorified body through acts of "obedience, good works, faithfulness, watchfulness, praying, and holy living." 
  Though these manifested acts of obedience are very important in the Christians walk.  They are NOT the bases, nor are they the qualifying factor for those who are "already in Christ."  The apostle Paul makes emphatically clear that if one possesses the Holy Spirit they will be given a resurrected body by God's Spirit who indwells (Rom. 8:9-16).  
  The "spirit" of every believer in Christ has already been made righteous by the righteousness of Christ (Rom. 3;22;  1Cor.1:30;   Phil. 3:9;   2 Cor.5:21) which they received from God at that moment when they called on the name of the Lord to be saved (Rom. 10:9,10,  10:13;   Eph.1:13-14).   But the believers "flesh" has not been made perfect, glorified, nor quickened yet.  This glorification of the believers body takes place at the time of the resurrection/Rapture (1Cor 15:50-58;  1Thess. 4:13-18). 
  Sadly there has been a great neglect of teaching and a terrible lack of emphasis on "what" this whole event of the Rapture of the church is really all about.  To many emphasize and focus on only "one aspect" of this event,  which is the "translation of the living saints in Christ" into the presence of God.  But many neglect to point out and show that this important event is really the "resurrection program of God."  God is completing and "ending" the dispensation of grace (the chruch age) at the time of the resurrection/ Rapture of the church saints. 
  Once the resurrection event has taken place.  God then restarts His prophetic program once again with His people Israel (Ministry ended when He rode into Jerusalem on Nisan 10 and wept over the city in 30.5 AD. / Matt. 23:37-39).  Following the Rapture God then begins to complete the rest of Israel's prophetic 70th week mentioned in Daniel chapter 9.  Israel and the world will go back under the Old Testament economy (Law) in order for God to begin His "judgment and wrath program which is specifically for unbelieving Israel and the rest of the unbelieving Gentiles who were left behind at the time of Christ's appearing. 
  God is going to save a faithful remnant out of the nation of Israel during this judgment period.  Where there is "no grace", there is only the outward physical manifestation of the "judgment of God upon the wicked" in the "Day of the Lord" (Rom.1:18,  2:5;   Rev. 6:2).  Those of us who are in Christ are not destined for judgment, nor wrath of any kind! (Rom. 5:1, 9;    8:1,2;   1Thess. 5:1-11). 
  Christ is returning at the time of the resurrection for the sole purpose of "finalizing and completing" the redemption program for the church (the glorification of the bodies of the church saints 1 Cor. 15:50-58) who are not under the administration of the Old Testament economy of the Law,  but under the new administration of grace in-which they stand (Rom. 5:1,2).  "For the Law was given through Moses;  grace and truth were realized through Jesus Christ" (John 1:17).
  The apostle Paul in Romans 8:3 says this: "For what the Law cound Not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did; sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, He condemned sin (all sin past, present, and future) in the flesh, (v.4.) "In order that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us (the believer), who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit" (The indwelling of the Holy Spirit).
  All those who have already died in Christ from Pentecost until Christ's appearing will be resurrected first and will receive their glorified bodies at that time along with those who are alive in Christ.  Both the "dead in Christ" and the "Living in Christ" will be caught up together to meet the Lord in the air (1Thess.4:13-18).  These new glorified bodies that the dead in Christ and the living in Christ receive are for the purpose of preparing the saint for the eternal state.  This is why the apostle Paul says the following in 1corinthians 15:50
(v. 50). "Now I say this, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God;  nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable."   (v. 53) "For this perishable must put on the imperishable, and this mortal must put on immortality."
   Qualifying for The resurrection/Rapture program of God is not determined by man's rules.   Nor does anyone have the power or ability "within themselves" to "ensure or guarantee" that they will be a participant in this event when it happens based on their "good conduct, and holy living."  The ONLY criteria that is given to us in the word of God that guarantees any saints participation in the resurrection/Rapture program of God is the criteria that one must be "in Christ" (and the dead "in Christ" shall rise first 1Thess.4:16),  which is accomplished by the indwelling, and sealing of the Holy Spirit of God within the believers life (Rom.8:9-16;  1Cor.12:13;   2Cor.1:21,22;   Eph.4:30;  1Thess.4:13-18).  
  The indwelling and sealing of the believer by the Holy Spirit takes place at the moment of repentance and conversion to Christ through faith in the gospel (Eph.1:13-14), and thus they are forever sealed by the Holy Spirit for the "Day of redemption" Eph. 4:30This glorification of the body of the believer takes place at the time of Christ's appearing.  The glorification of the body is the final stage of the redemption process for the believer in Christ.  The "dispensation of Grace" therefore ends at the time of the resurrection.  The dispensation of the Old Testament economy of the Law then returns once again in order for God to begin "His wrath and judgment program."
Romans 4:15 "For the "Law" brings about "wrath", but where there is "No Law , neither is there violation." (see Romans 8:1,2)
Law, or Grace, which is it? 
  In simple terms Grace is the "Unmerited favor of God."  It is based upon the "finished work of Christ for sin on the cross."  The just demands of the Law (which is death Rom. 6:23) were met and fulfilled in Christ (Matt. 5:17).  This is called "justification."  Christ bore the "Full penalty" for all of our sin (Col. 2:13,14).  Therefore because of this one righteous act of God through Christ,  God can now declare any person righteous, sanctified, and justified (1 Cor. 1:30) who has thus placed there trust and faith in Christ apart from works (Eph. 2:8-10;   Titus 3:4-7).  Now that grace has come (unmerited favor) salvation can now be extended to all mankind through the work of Christ which is "by faith alone", and which has been completely "finished" (John 19:30).  Man can add "Nothing" to what God has already sufficiently, perfectly, and effectively accomplished through His Son (Rom. 8:3).
(note:)  Since the believer is sealed by the Holy Spirit for the "Day of redemption" (Eph. 4:30), and NOT according to their works.  It is therefore "impossible" for them to "keep" their salvation "by their works."  Othewise "grace" would no longer be grace.  And salvation would then become a "work back under the Law."   This would mean then that Christ's sacrifice for "all sin" as the scripture states would be invalid, insufficient, and incomplete.  It would also mean that Christ would have to die over, and over, and over again since "the foundation of the world",  since His sacrifice was NOT perfect the first time.  The word of God tells us just the opposite, and clarifies clearly that His death only needed to happen once! (Heb.9:24-28).  Therefore salvation comes to the believer "ONLY ONCE!"
Below is a diagram which I made to show the different dispensations.
I----------No Law--------I--------------Law-------------I-------age of Grace---------I------------Law----------------I--------------No Law-------------I
I-----Gen. to Sinai------I-----Sinai to the cross---I--Cross to the Rapture---I-----tribulation period------I-----millennial kindgom-------I
I------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------I----------------------The Day of the Lord---------------------I
I------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------I---------Narrow day----------I----Broad day of the Lord---I
I------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------I---------seven years---------I----------1000 years------------I 
  The "Day of the Lord" consists not only of the "wrath of God" (the tribulation period), but it also consists of the "Blessings of God", which is the 1000 year reign of Christ upon the earth.  That which is termed the "Narrow day of the Lord" begins following the Rapture of the church.  The "Broad day of the Lord" is made up of most of the time which relates to the millennial kingdom age. Christ's 1000 year reign on the earth ( Rev. 20:6).
  Grace began at the cross, but the church did not come into existence until Pentecost.  This is when the Holy Spirit came to take up residency within the believer "For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body" (1Cor. 12:13).  Pentecost was the beginning, or the inception of the church.  Above you can see clearly that the "age of grace" has to end before the tribulation judgment can begin. 
  Israel's 70 weeks prophecy was given to Daniel by the angel Gabriel "under the law" (Old Testament economy),  and therefore it must be completed and fulfilled back under the Law since this prophecy was given at that time.  It must be fulfilled "Outside" of the dispensation of grace.  This prophecy of the 70 weeks (or 490 years) was not given to the church, but to Israel only.  Gabriel tells Daniel in Dan. 9:24 the following:  "70 weeks have been decreed for thy people (Daniel's people Israel), and thy holy city (Daniel's city Jerusalem).........etc.  The 70 weeks prophecy (490 yrs) concerns only "Israel's sin" and her restoration (Dan.9:24-27).  
  God's prophetic program for Israel is designed to be kept "separate" from the prophetic program for the "church."   In the Old Testament Israel was chosen by God out from among all the nations of the earth (Deut 4:37,38,  7:7-8,  10:15). They were "one nationally."  Israel today is still God's "chosen people", but they are in unbelief (Rom.11:25,26).  The church is not made up of a "one nationality of people" like Israel. 
  The body of Christ, unlike Israel,  is made up of many peoples from many nationalities, Jews as well as Gentiles alike, though the majority of the body of Christ is predominantly made up of Gentiles.  Therefore God cannot combine nor fulfill both programs of "Israel and the church" together in the same "dispensaton of time."  In the Old Testament God was only working with, and calling out from among the nations "His people Israel", and no other nation (Deut 4:37,38,  7:7-8,  10:15). 
   Those of "Grace" (the church) who have believed the gospel have been set free from eternal condemnation through Christ (Rom. 5:1, 9, 10;  8:1,2).  The other group is of the Law (unbelieving Israel) who rejected the gospel of grace, and therefore will experience the "physical judgment and chastisment" of the hand of God along with the rest of the unbelieving Gentiles during the tribulation period.
   All the earthly kingdom blessings which were promised to Israel through Abraham (Abrahams seed / Gen. chapters 15-17) will be given to the "believing remnant" of Israel when Christ returns at the end of the tribulation period in order to establish His kingdom (Matt. 24:24,31).  Israel is an "earthly people" to whom the covenants belonged (Rom. 9:4   Eph. 2:12),  and the church is a "Heavenly people" who have inherited all the "spiritual blessings in Christ in the heavenlies" (Eph. 1:3).  Israel and the church must be kept separate in order to understand much of God's word correctly.
  Grace and Law do not mix.  It is either one or the other.  Trying to mix Law and Grace would be like trying to mix "oil with water."  The nature of the two substances will not allow you to mix them.  They will always remain separate due to their natural properties.  Likewise trying to mix the two different dispensations of Law and Grace is also scripturally and theologically impossible to do.  You can see on the chart above that I have displayed,  that the dispensation of the Law ended at the cross and the dispensation of grace began.  Grace will END at the time of the resurrection/Rapture.  Then the Old Testament economy of the Law returns at the opening of the Day of the Lord which follows the Rapture.
  The apostle Paul makes very clear in scripture that the body of Christ is NOT under the Law, and neither can the church every return back under the Law since Christ has fulfilled the just demands of it.   This new administration (Eph. 3:8-11), which is by grace through faith in Christ (Eph. 2:8-10) has given the believer in Christ  "eternally forgiveness" for all sin, for all time (Rom.6:10;   Col.2:13,14;   Heb.9:12, 28   Heb.10:10-14). 
  The dispensation of the Law and the dispensation of grace "have never", and "can never" operate at the same time, since they are two different dispensations of time which effect two different groups.  The Law was not given to the Gentiles, but it was given to Israel.  Both Law and Grace are like the "oil" and "Water" example.  They will never mix! 
Israel's prophetic time  
  During the first 3-1/2 years half of the tribulation God is dealing with "national Israel" and her prophetic prgram by "calling out His remnant of Jewish people" according to Daniel's 70 weeks prophecy, which God will be completing.  These judgments called the "The Birth pangs" (Matt. 24:8) are for the purpose of preparing a remnant out of the nation of Israel who will inherit the promised kingdom, and to "fulfill the times of the Gentiles" spoken of by Jesus in Luke 21:24.  Therefore the church can never be a partaker of Israel's prophetic program during the tribulation period called "Jacob's trouble."  God makes clear in (Jer.30:3-11) that this period is for Israel.
  The apostle Paul says this "Give no offense either to the Jews or to Greeks, or to the church of God (1Cor. 10:32).  Here you can see that Paul teaches that there are 3 different distinct groups of people in the world today.  Israel is not saved nationally at this time.  The faithful remnant of Israel who will be purchased and saved during the tribulation will make up the "true nation" of Israel who will possess the kingdom when Christ returns.
 The church is comprised of many peoples from many nations.  The church is also pictured in the New Testament espistles as a "heavenly people" by the apostle Paul in (Eph. 1:3),  and not an earthly people as Israel is.  Notice that Paul the apostle differentiates the Church from the Gentiles even though the church is predominently Gentile.  The bible says that those who make up the body of Christ are "all one" in Christ (For by one Spirit you were all baptized into one body /1Cor. 12:13).  Those who make up the body of Christ have already been made "perfect in spirit" through the blood of Christ, and therefore judgment is not needed nor required to purchase the church (Rom. 8:1,2).
  The Gentiles make up the third group.  This group is unregenerated and is still dead in their sins.  They are in unbelief just like the nation of Israel.  These Gentile nations will also be recipients of God's physical judgment and wrath during the tribulation period.  These ungregenerated (spiritually dead) Gentiles are the ones who will be left behind along with unbelieving Israel at the time of the resurrection/Rapture.  The Laodicean church, which is the last church mentioned in Revelation 3:14-22 is NOT made up of those who are "in Christ" (the true body of Christ).  
  This church of Laodicea is made up of those who "profess Christ" (They have a form of Godliness, although they have denied its power 2Tim 3:1-7) but who do NOT possess Christ (They Don't have the Holy Spirit, and therefore they do not belong to Christ Rom. 8:9).  For this reason God is going to "spit them out of His mouth" and expose them to the severe   judgments of the tribulation period in order to judge them.  Jesus says in Revelation 3:10 " test "THOSE" (the wicked) who dwell upon the earth."
 The last 3-1/2 years of the tribulation period which encompasses mainly the 7th trump, and the seven bowl judgments is reserved for the wicked Gentile nations.  God will be in the process of overthrowing and destroying the Gentile powers.  The remnant of Israel during this time will be protected by God for 3-1/2 years (Jer. 31:1,2;   Rev. 12:14).   During this last 3-1/2 years of the tribulation period God will be fulfilling the prophecy made by Jesus in Luke 21:24 "And Jerusalem shall be trampled under foot by the Gentiles until the "Times of the Gentiles be fulfilled." 
 The "middle of the tribulation" is seen in Rev. 11:2 ( 42 months / 1260 days / 3-1/2 years). God at this time takes His "great power" and begin to reign from heaven (Rev. 11:17).  This means that from this point onward, all the way to the end of the tribulation period, God begins the "eviction process" of Satan and His wicked evil emissaries from the earth, and renders the Gentile powers destroyed.  These events will climax with the second advent of Christ to the earth (Armageddon).
No flesh shall be justified by the Law 
  The apostle Pauls epistles are very clear that no flesh shall be justified in God's sight by the works of the Law (Rom.3:20).  Neither before the Law came ( For Abraham, who was before the law was declared righteous by faith apart from works (Rom.4:1-3).  Nor during the dispensation of the Law from Mt. Sinai (Mosaic Law) to the cross.   And certainly not during the dispensation of grace which the apostle Paul makes very clear in his epistles.  The Law can never save anyone at anytime.   It only condemns us and points out our sin. Therefore the apostle Paul says that the Law was "our tutor" to lead us to Christ in order that we might be justified by faith (Gal. 3:24).
  Those unbelieving Jews and unbelieving Gentiles who will be left behind at the time of the resurrection/Rapture will experience God's wrath and judgment "physically" during the tribulation period.  The outward physical judgment of God is the result of their "sinful spiritual condition."  The nation of Israel and the rest of the world as a whole have both "rejected" the grace of God which comes through faith in Christ Jesus, and of which they "Could have received" had they believed the gospel during the church age.   
  Therefore there is nothing left but the "physical wrath and chastisment of God" which will come upon Israel and "Them that dwell upon the whole earth" (Rev. 3:10 / in the Day of the Lord ).   This is why the church will NOT experience the tribulation period. The tribulation judgments begin with the opening of the "First seal" in Revelation chapter 6.  This takes place "within, or inside" the "Day of the Lord", which commences immediately following the Rapture.  We who are in Christ are promised that we will NOT experience the "Day of the Lord's wrath" (1Thess 5:1-9 ).      
   Those who are in Christ can never be judged by the Law.  Christ took all our sins upon Himself and judged all of them there at the cross (Rom.6:10;    Heb.9:12, 28   Heb.10:10-14).   All of our sins past, present, and future were "nailed" to the cross" (Col. 2:13-14).   The apostle Paul says: "for the wages of sin is death......." (Rom. 6:23).   This means physical death and spiritual death, which we inherited through Adam (Rom. 5:12).  "Christ is the end of the law, righteousness to everyone who believes" (Rom. 10:4).
   I want you all to see something very important in the text of Gal.2:16-21!   Paul the apostle in Galations 2:18 says this: "For If I rebuild what I have "onced destroyed" I prove myself to be a trangressor."  
  What the apostle Paul is stating in this text of Galatians is this.  That since Christ has been crucified salvation can now come to all men by grace through faith in Christ alone.  Therefore there is no need to return back under the law in order to seek justification since the Law could not justify anyone.  "Christ fulfilled the Law" (Matt. 5:17;   Rom. 8:3,4).  Sin has been judged through the work of the cross, in-which the penalty for all sin, which is "Death" has been paid for "in full" (Col. 2:13,14).  It was only the shedding of Christ's blood that could make atonement for our sins (Rom. 5:9,10).
  Those "Judaizers" whom the apostle Paul was addressing in the Book of Galatians were seeking to be justified by the Law all over again (by their observance of the Law, and its religious duty).   They were trying to "rebuild" that which would enslave man once again, and thus "nullify" the grace of God. 
  The redemptive work of Christ at the cross accomplished for man what the Law could not do.  And that was to give "life."  Therefore Christ has once and for all fufilled the just demands of the Law (Rom. 6:23,   7:6),   "Who also made us adequate as servants of a new covenant, NOT of the letter (the Law), but of the Spirit, for the letter (the Law) kills, but the Spirit gives life" (2Cor. 3:6).
  Eternal life can now be given to man as a gift (Rom. 6:23), which comes by the grace through faith in Christ alone (Eph. 2:8-10), and who fulfilled the just demands of the Law when He hung on the cross and cried out "It Is finished(John 19:30).  Paul says "I do NOT nullify the grace of God; for if righteousness comes through the Law, then Christ died needlessly" (Gal. 2:21).
What does this all mean?
  This is an important and vital question!   Jesus said in John 6:39 the following: "And this is the will of Him (the Father) who sent Me, that of all that He has given Me I lose NOTHING, but raise it up on the last day."  
   Listen!  Our salvation which was accomplished by Christ's redemptive work at the cross is “eternal and for keeps.”   Question: "How can it be said that one has eternal life unless it means forever!    If the salvation of the believer could be lost, then it is not forever, and therefore it cannot be stated as eternal life
  Jesus has already declared this divine truth Himself in John 5:24 "truly, truly, I say to you, he who hears My word, and believes Him who sent me (the Father) Has eternal life (present perfect tense, which means at that moment you believe, and forever) and  DOES NOT come into judgment (at no time whatsovever), but has passed out of death into life." 
  Romans 8:1,2 says: "There is therefore now "no condemnation" to those who are "in Christ Jesus",  For the Law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you FREE from the law of sin and death.  
  HEY!  what do you know!  We already have eternal life according to Jesus in John 5:24, and we don't have to die in order to get it!  This eternal life that we possess in Christ can "never be altered" by our failing Christian conduct as a believer no matter how miserably we fail.  Why?  Because Christ paid the full penalty  for all of our sins, for all time (Rom.6:10;    Heb.9:12, 28   Heb.10:10-14). 
  If this sound doctrinal teaching from the word of God that I have been sharing with you stirrs a desire in anyones heart to want to go out and live like the devil,  then you have never been saved my friend.  This is why one gets saved.  Its because the Holy Spirit is convicting them of their sin, and they want to be forgiven by God.  Christians, no matter at what level of spiritual maturity they are at, whether weak or strong never cease to battle sin in their lives each and every day
  If you are struggling against the temptation of sin, and you are concerned about your spiritual walk with Christ,  then that is good  because only a child of God is concerned about sin in their lives and their walk with Christ.  The power and the victory of Christ which is available to every believer comes from God's Holy Spirit who indwells them, and who seals them at the moment of their conversion to Christ (Eph. 1:13).  The Holy Spirit is our only strength and power for the battle in our lives against sin, the world, the devil, and the flesh (Eph. 6:10-18).  The Holy Spirit has been given to us so that we might be victorious over sin while we live in these corrupt bodies of flesh, which have not been made perfect yet.
  The wicked have no power, nor do they have any desire to live for Christ.  Therefore they have no desire to stop sinning.  They are compelled to live by the power of the flesh with no restraints since they are "devoid" of the Spirit of God (Jude 1:19).   Knowing that I am forgiven eternally for all my sins as a Christain has "never" compelled me to live like the devil.  My eternal security in Christ has always compelled me to want to live a Godly life for Christ out of humility, gratitude, and with love in my heart for Him because of what He endured and accomplished for me at the cross ( Eternal Redemption through the shedding of His blood) (Heb. 9:12).
  Every persons sin from the beginning of Adam until the last person to be born was paid for in full by Christ's death on the cross (Col. 2:13-14).  Yes Jesus paid the price for ALL of them past, present, and future!  The ones we have forgotten about, the ones we have confessed, the ones we haven't confessed, sins yet to be committed tomorrow, the next day, and the next week, etc.  Where were you and I when Christ died on the cross?  That's right!  We were all in the future waiting to be born.  And yet the bible says He died for all of our sins for all time.  If you don't believe me.  Then here are some scripture verses just for you my friend!
Hebrews 10:10, 12, 14
(10). By this will we "have been sanctified" through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ ONCE FOR ALL!   ( do you see any conditions or loop holes here?  I don't! )
(12). But He (Christ), having offered ONE SACRIFICE for sins, FOR ALL TIME sat down at the right hand of God."  ( Do you see any conditions or loop holes here?  I don't )
(14). For by ONE OFFERING (For sin) He (Christ) has perfected FOR ALL TIME (Past, present, and future) those who are sanctified."  Do you see any conditions or loop holes here?  I don't!
  You know what folks!  If anyone one of you who are reading this article cannot accept these scriptures as God's absolute truth, and therefore cannot accept the fact that Jesus died for ALL of your sins,  and paid the FULL PENALTY for them ALL.   Then you have a very serious problem!  Hebrews chapter 10:10,12,14 shows clearly that Jesus died for all of our sins in......................
(1). the past (ones you have committed intentionally, or unintentionally, confessed, and not confessed).
(2). the present (ones you are committing intentionally, unintentionally, confessing, and not confessing).
(3). the future (ones that you haven't committed intentionally, or unintentionally yet,  which will be confessed in the future, or not confessed ).  
  Listen!  I don't know anyones heart, only God does.  For those who think that they have to suffer judgment and punishment for their sins of the past, present, and future that Jesus has already paid for in full,  then it could mean several things.  
(1). It could mean that you may not understand the gospel of Jesus Christ, and therefore you are seeking to be justified before God by "your obedient religious practice, and good moral conduct."  If this is the case, then "you have become your own savior" (1Cor. 8:6;  1Tim. 2:5,6),  which means that Christ is not your personal savior, and therefore the Holy Spirit is not in you (Rom. 8:9). 
 You therefore need to confess your sin to Christ and surrender your will, heart, and life to Him.  Ask Him to forgive you for all of your sins which He has already suffered and died for "past, present, and future."  And then invite Him to come into your heart and save you" (Rom. 10:9,10, 13).
(2). It may be that you have trusted Christ as your savior?,  but you are finding it hard to cannot forgive yourself as Christ has already forgiven you due to your repetitive sinful habits and failures, which drives you to "Self condemnation."  If this is the case then you need to let these scriptures that I have shared with you in this study "Sink deep into your heart", and let them set you free "Once and for all" from this terrible self destruction.  Christ has already done a "Complete and finished work for your redemption" through the cross.   Listen!  God has forgiven us of  ALL OUR TRANGRESSIONS. Go read Colossians 2:12,13. It will comfort you.
  Many of those who read this article will probably fall into the second category listed above.  This second category of people is where all this confusion and doubt is being generated from concerning the subject of  "who will go" and "who will stay" at the time of the resurrection/Rapture.  This is where the "Partial Rapture theory" comes into play.  This second category is also made up of people who think they can lose their salvation.  The problem with these people is that they just cannot forgive themselves of their shortcomings and repetitive failures despite the fact that the word of God has clearly stated that Christ has already forgiven them for all their sins past, present, and future.  Their real problem is that they just can't accept it!   They feel the need to be punished with God's wrath and judgment during the tribulation which is not for the church, but for Israel (Jacob's trouble / Jer. 30:4-11).
  Therefore these Christians are "strong advocates" of the "partial Rapture theory" which is not biblical nor sound doctrinally. Those who adhere to this false teaching believe that some of the body of Christ will be left behind in order to be judged during the tribulation period due to the sin in there lives, whatever that sin or sins might be?  This appeals to them greatly since they feel the need to be "purged, judged, and stricken down by God for their continual failure and repetitive sin in their lives.
  These kinds of Christians find this false teaching appropriate, reasonable, and very justifiable from a "human perspective",  since it is satisfying to their flesh.  This false doctrine appeals to their "Self condemnation" which they have been carrying around much too long.  The devil loves this kind of thing because it takes alot of the Christians energy and focus away from serving Christ and renders them less than 100% effective in service to Him.  They are constantly focused on the sin in their life which they feel needs to be judged!  Therefore they are emotionally drained and "stressed out to the max!"  No one can serve Christ effectively this way!
   I have come up with a name for this "self condemnation syndrome" that these Christians carry around with them. I call it the "Murphy's law of Christianity" (for every action there is a reaction).  These poor saints have failed to see and realize that Christ has already taken all their "Action" (their Sins) and bore them in His own body on the cross (1Peter 2:24).  The cross was Christ's demonstration of love for the world (John 3:16).  His going to the cross was His "Reaction" or remedy for sin, and was not a "Reaction" of condmenation against the sinner (John 3:17 "For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved).  We were helpless (Rom. 5:1-11).  
Can a believer ever be "Unsealed" by the Holy Spirit?
  Jesus said In John 14:16,17  "And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may be with you FOREVER;  that is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it does not behold Him or know Him, but you know Him because He abides with you, AND WILL BE IN YOU (took place at Pentecost).
  Here we have the very words of Jesus state and confirm that when the Holy Spirit comes He will come to indwell and take up permanent residency within the believer (forever).  This indwelling of God's Holy Spirit cannot be reversed.  The Holy Spirit was not sent by Jesus based upon mans human ability and intervention through acts of obedience to religious Law, nor by good moral conduct.  He was sent based on a promise.  
  The word "Abide" is the Greek word Meno / strongs' Greek concordance # 3306 means  "to be present."   Jesus said that the Holy Spirit abided with them, but that later He would come to indwell them.   This took place on the day of Pentecost,  which fulfilled "the promise" given by Jesus to His disciples in (John 14:16, 26;  16:7;  Acts 1:1-8   Acts 2:32, 33),
(Interjection note:)  All the Old Testament saints had the "Abiding" of the Holy Spirit, but not the "Indwelling" of the Holy Spirit, which was not fulfilled until Pentecost.  The particular special ministries of the Holy Spirit to the believer in the present age (Grace)
are for the purpose of "the Baptizm (1Cor. 12:13),  the Indwelling (1Cor. 6:19,20),  the filling (Eph:5:18),  the Sealing (Eph. 1:13).  These special ministries will cease at the close of the church age (resurrection/Rapture)  which is under grace.  The Holy Spirit will return once again following the judgment period (tribulation period) in order to "take up residency within the believer" once again during the kingdom age (Joel 2:28-32).
  Jesus had to first go to the cross to make atonement for all sin (Rom.6:10;   Col.2:13,14;   Heb.9:12, 28  Heb.10:10-14). Then be buried, rise on the third day, and then ascend back to His Father who accepted His sacrifice for sin.  Then and only then could the Holy Spirit be sent.  If the Father had not accepted Christ's sacrifice for "all sin for all time",  then the Holy Spirit would have not been sent and our salvation would be incomplete and non-existent.  Thank the Lord that the sacrifice of His Son made a "complete and perfect sacrifice for all of our sins." 
  Therefore the sending of the Holy Spirit was sent based totally upon Jesus' finished work which brought "eternal redemption" to mankind through His blood (Heb.9:12).  Man had NO part in the design, the perfecting, nor the completion of his own redemption (1Cor. 1:30).  God through Christ planned it all.  The apostle Paul makes this very clear (Rom. 8:3,4). 
Question:  Why did David cry out in Psalms 51:11  "Do not cast me away from Thy presence, and do not take Thy Holy Spirit from me."   
  Psalm 51 is a Psalm of David when Nathan the prophet came to him after he (David) had gone in to Bathsheba.   David planned the death of Bathsheba's husband Uriah by putting him on the "Front lines" in order to be killed in a fierce battle.  David did this in order that he might have Bathsheba whom he lusted after. You can read about this in 2 Sam. chapter 11.  
  In the Old Testament the Holy Spirit would come upon and "abide" with the kings of Israel who were anointed to lead the nation.  But these kings who were anointed were NOT indwelt with the Holy Spirit as the body of Christ is in this age of grace in-which we now live.  In the book of 1Samuel 10:1 we see Samuel anointing Saul as king over Israel "............Has not the Lord anointed you a ruler over His inheritance?"  In 1Samuel chapter 16:13,  we see that David being anointed with oil by Samuel  "Then Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him (David) in the midst of his brothers; and the Spirit of the Lord came mightily "Upon" David from that day onward."  
The Hebrew word for "anointed" is the Hebrew word Mashach - Strongs' Hebrew concordance #4886 - means "To rub with oil, to consecrate." 
  Here we see that David after being anointed with oil by Samuel experienced the Holy Spirit of God coming upon him (abide / not indwell).  When David sinned against the Lord with Bathsheba he experienced great conviction and remorse for his sin by which he cries out in Psalms 51:11 "Do not cast me away from Thy presence, and do not take Thy Holy Spirit from me."   
  David in his grief thought that the presence of the Lord would leave him due to his sin.  But scripture shows clearly that the "Spirit of the Lord came mightily upon David from that day onward" (1Sam. 16:13).  This shows that the Holy Spirit remained and "abided" with David all the days of his rulership despite his sin,  until his death came,  which is recorded in 1Kings 2:10-11.  
The Conclusion
 The apostle Paul in His epistles always speaks of the "receiving of Christ", and the "receiving of the Holy Spirit" in the "past perfect tense." 
Col. 2:6 "As you therefore "have received Christ Jesus" (Past perfect tense), so walk in Him."
Eph. 1:13 "In Him, you also, after listening to the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation, having also believed, you were sealed in Him (past perfect tense) with the Holy Spirit of promise."
Eph. 4:30 "And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom "you were sealed" (past perfect tense) for the day of redemption.   
  These verses in the New Testament epistles and many others like them, which were penned by the apostle Paul by the divine inspiration of the Holy Spirit are "always" in the past perfect tense.  When you "receive Christ by faith" you also are being simultaneously sealed by The Holy Spirit (Eph. 1:13).  This divine process does NOT need to be repeated over and over again!  You can only be saved once, since Christ died "Once" for sins (Heb. 9:28).  Therefore you receive the Holy Spirit only one time because He has promised "I will never leave you nor forsake you" (Heb.13:5;   John 14:18).
  The spirit of the believer is saved, but the flesh is not.  Christ is returning for the purpose of "redeeming" the believers body (glorification Eph. 4:30,  1Cor. 15:50-58,    1Thess. 4:13-18).  This new glorified body makes the believer compatible for the eternal state.  Jesus is coming to get every saint who is sealed by the Holy Spirit which "He purchased" at the cross with His own blood.  The Holy Spirit is the "down payment",  and when Christ comes,  He will not leave one single child of God behind who possesses His righteousness,  whether they are carnal or spiritual in their walk!  Christ cannot reject His own righteousness which "every believer in Christ possesses" (2Cor. 5:21).
  Paul never mentions,  nor does he every teach any kind of doctrine in his epistles that suggests that the believer can experience the "Unsealing of the Holy Spirit."  It can be found NO WHERE!   From the book of Acts, which was a transitional book from Law to grace, all the way to to book of Jude there is nothing BUT SILENCE concerning such a doctrine.  If the Holy Spirit could leave the believer once they had received Him,  then the Holy Spirit would have most definitly inspired Paul to write extensively on such an important doctrine, but He didn't,  NOT ONE WORD!   There is no sin of the believer in Christ,  of the past, present, or future which has been committed intentionally, or unintentionally, confessed, or unconfessed at anytime which Jesus has not already paid for in full at the cross (Col. 2:13,14).  
  There are many ministers today who will stand up and preach, teach, scream, stomp their feet, and beat the pulpit with their fist with great emotional conviction saying things such as for example: "The teaching of eternal security of the believer is nothing more than a license to sin.  And if you believe this false teaching then you will find yourself possibly burning in hell one day!"
  I am amazed at the arrogance and foolishness of these kind of preachers, teachers, and lay people!   Anyone who would deliver such a message of condemnation to their audience like the one shown above has openly admitted to everyone that they are in "unbelief."  Christ's eternal blood sacrifice = eternal forgiveness for the believer.  These kind of people have "trampled the blood of Christ" by suggesting that His blood was not sufficient enough to pay the full penalty for all sin.   The sciptures teach just the opposite (Rom. 3:25, 5:10;   Eph. 1:7,  2;13;   Col. 1:20;   Heb. 9:,12,14, 22,  10:10-19).
  Eph. 2:8 says:  "For by grace "you have been" saved, through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the "Gift" of God."  Notice that the "verb tense" is in the "past perfect tense."  This past perfect tense shows action that took place "in the past" with continuing results.  I got the following off the internet.
Meaning of perfect tense.

 This tense is like the aorist in that it also sees the action as taking place in a point in time. The difference is that the perfect also emphasizes continuing results. It denotes completed action in the past with finished results in the present.  Therefore Eph. 2:8 read as follows:

Eph.2:8 "For by grace YOU WERE SAVED IN THE PAST WITH CONTINUING RESULTS through faith, and that not of yourselves" (End quote).

In otherwords folks!  "You can't lose your salvation!"
  The ONLY way that the "sealing" of the Holy Spirit could even come close to being reversed in a believers life is if there was "any sin" that Jesus might NOT have payed for at the cross.  Whoa!   Do you know what this would mean folks?   It would mean then that the apostle Paul and all his epistles that he wrote to the church are absolute lies and worthless to the core and should be thrown out. This means then that you would also have to take all four gospels which were written by Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John and throw them out with the epistles, since the apostles are nothing more than a bunch of lunatics, Liars, Tricksters, and fools!
  Then what you should do is go on National TV and tell the world "They were right!", in that the bible is a Lie!   Then after you have done this you might as well go out and live like the devil because at this point there is no salvation to lose folks!  Therefore
there is no God, no bible, no Holy Spirit, no sin, no right and wrong, and finally no absolute truth anymore!
   The example that I have just demonstrated to you in the above paragraphs shows you just how ridiculous this teaching is concerning losing your salvation and missing the resurrection/Rapture due to sin.  Listen to me!  God didn't forget, overlook, or misplace any sin of any kind, of any amount, of any believer, at anytime past, present, or future, which He has not already placed on Christ when He was crucified!  Lets face it!  The only reason why anyone would would teach that a believer can lose their salvation is because they believe that SIN is the culprit!  What these kind of people have done unconciously is this.  They have just called God "a liar."
  So for anyone who thinks that a believer in Christ can lose their salvation or miss the resurrection/Rapture due to sin,  Then go ahead and make a fool of yourself by trying to "Undo all" that God has accomplished through Christ.  The Holy Spirit could NOT be sent until Jesus Died, was buried, and resurrected, and then ascend to His Father.  If anyone thinks that you can undo this! Then you are "totally delusioned!" 
   Again for clarification!   If the death of Christ didn't make atonement for all of our sins, then the Holy Spirit would NOT have been sent, and the sacrifice of Christ would have been "incomplete!"  The salvation and the security of the believer by the sealing of the Holy Spirit was all accomplished by God through the redemptive work of Christ.  It is impossible scripturally to lose your salvation or miss the resurrection/Rapture as a child of God due to any kind of sin.  Christ has already "Settled" the sin issure for us at the cross!  Those of us who are "In Christ" by faith "have been sealed" with the Holy Spirit "for the day redemption" ( Ehp. 4:30).
 Therefore He (Christ) is able also "to save forever" those who draw near to God through Him, since He "always lives" (eternal) to make intercession for them.
(Heb. 7:25)

  1st Cor.1:7-9 “……. awaiting eagerly the revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ,  “who shall also CONFIRM YOU TO THE END, BLAMELESS in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ.(resurrection/Rapture) “God is faithful, through whom you were called into fellowship with His Son Jesus Christ.

This concludes (part one).  Stay tuned!  You don't want to miss (part 2)
In Christ, Tom Gaston

  1rst Cor.1:7-9 “……. awaiting eagerly the revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ, v.8 “who shall also CONFIRM YOU TO THE END, BLAMELESS in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ.” V.9 “God is faithful, through whom you were called into fellowship with His Son Jesus Christ.


  Phil.1:6 “For I am CONFIDENT of this VERY THING, that HE who began a good work in you will PERFECT IT until the day of Christ Jesus.(resurrection/rapture)


  Eph.4:30 “And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, BY WHOM WERE SEALED

for the day of redemption. (Redemption of the body/resurrection/rapture.)