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Joined: 2011/2/5
Posts: 1

 Memoir of an Apostate

The history is pretty simple - I was a Christian, a devoted one who walked with the Holy Spirit (and you can't convince me otherwise) who, during college, left the faith.

I was an agnostic for 7 years, and I HATED the church and spoke innumerable heresies and insults toward Christ and His people.

Through the direction of a friend, I came back. Or atleast, I did what I could. Jesus is precious to me, and I mourn over who I was and what I had done, wishing it away like it were a dream.

But, like plenty of others, I just can't seem to get past Hebrews 6, regardless of how much I try and wish for freedom in Christ.

Hebrews says that what will remain for people like me is nothing but a fear of impending judgement. Ain't that the truth.

And when you're in my position, you're really kind of left with two choices.

1. Live like the devil, because it doesn't matter what you do, you're going to be justly burned.


2. Get it in your head that you're going to try to win yourself salvation by telling others about Jesus and directing them there. Logically, you understand that you can't win salvation by works, but you figure you've got nothing to lose, so you might as well try. (Interestingly enough, Hebrews 6:10 becomes your hope... people can't live without any hope).

So that's where I am. Do I think I'm saved? Nope. Nothing I can really do at this point - as Hebrews said, I cannot be renewed. Do I love Jesus? Yes.

So let's see if I can't get someone else to, someone who has a chance, yeah?

The only way out I can see, logically speaking, is if I've been saved all along. That the years I spent shaming Christ and willfully rebelling, I still somehow belonged to Him. And wouldn't that be a thought!

But it doesn't hold with Hebrews 6. It just doesn't.

Not sure why I'm here. Helps to write out and organize my thoughts.

But to all of you: NEVER walk away. Never deny Him. I can tell you, there's nothing for you out there...

That is, except a fearful expectation of judgement.

 2011/2/5 5:19Profile

 Re: Memoir of an Apostate


I know of another man with a similar struggle with the Hebrews 6 passage. I don't see it in God's character though to refuse someone who is really tired of sin and is ready to let Jesus be Lord. Isn't it such people that Jesus invites to come to him? "Come unto me, ALL ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light." (Matthew 11:28-30)

We also see by 1 Timothy 2:4 that God "will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth." So there is still hope for you.

Hebrews 6 is a hard passage to understand, but I really believe that the main point of Hebrews 6:6 is that it's impossible to repent while crucifying Christ and putting him to an open shame, which by 6:7-8 is shown by not responding to the rain (the word of God in the Holy Spirit- think of the parable of the seed and the sower in Matthew 13). In other words, if you refuse to respond in faith by obeying the word of God you are crucifying the Son of God afresh, and as long as you do that it's impossible to repent, for true repentance is by submitting to the Son of God, who is the word of God. True repentance in the New Covenant is always in submitting to Jesus as Lord to be his disciple (Matthew 12:49-50). The Holy Spirit is thus given to all them that obey him (Acts 5:32). That all lines up with the context of Hebrews 6 (and really the entire Book of Hebrews) of the need to press on to perfection (6:1) by continuing to respond in faith to the word of Christ as his disciple and coming to him as our High Priest for his grace to keep us as we come to him.

With that said, if you were to come on here and ask if there was a way for you to repent and be saved without continuing to follow Jesus on the narrow way, striving against your flesh, the world, and the devil- the answer according to Hebrews 6 would be NO, though I fear you might get a few yesses even then. There is no salvation outside the conditions of discipleship in the New Covenant (Matthew 7:24-27, Luke 14:25-33 show that too). However, according to Matthew 11:28-30 if you're convinced of your need to give God glory, be saved from sin, and walk the narrow way with Jesus, then you CAN STILL come to Jesus and be saved.

Don't use Hebrews 6:10 to try to win your salvation now. It is just simply saying that God is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him by faith (Hebrews 11:6 exactly). I would not trust in any salvation experience in the past nor exclude the possibility that you were saved in the past. Neither is the main issue, and that is what the Hebrews writer is saying. The issue is that you submit to Jesus and call on him now and continue to until the end (Matthew 24:13). Remember that the Holy Spirit is given to those who obey Jesus and that the Spirit witnesses to those he lives in and leads that they are God's children (Romans 8:16). Seek Christ until you get that witness and continue to follow him by faith so you are given that witness continually.

 2011/2/5 6:31


I really feel for you.

Growing one has given good advice.

You can't earn your way back. Follow after Jesus, dont let others judge your salvation, just repent and follow after Jesus.

If you do this I don't know about anyone else, but I will consider you a brother

 2011/2/5 6:58

Joined: 2005/6/18
Posts: 1481


hi,i want you to consider a different slant to your problem.i want you to take a long time in the study of the blood covenant and all that it means and all that the bible teaches about it. i want you to focus on david asking if there was any in the house of saul around that he might honor the covenant he made with jonathan. jonathan had a son named mephibosheth who feared and hated david for he was hiding in the wilderness to avoid any contact with david:for he was told that david had usurpt his throne and was rushed out of the palace and dropped and crippled in the process as a child to avoid being killed by david. he was brought to david and david gave him honor and his inheritence instead.Jesus cut a covenant for God and man(you)for you... He took the wrath of the father on His self for all of your sins.He also is the enforcer of this covenant forever making intercession for you and promised that you would in no wise be cast out and that He would never leave you or forsake you. even if you like mephebosheth grew to hate Him and fear Him for all the wrong reasons.His mercies are new every morning and you have very little to do with your birthing;old and new.jimp

 2011/2/5 7:22Profile

Joined: 2004/7/7
Posts: 7463

 Re: Memoir of an Apostate

At the onset let me tell you I agree with growingone. Now having that behind me I want to ask you a question.

Is there a possibility that you are engaging in another sin[s], perhaps secretly or overtly, that you are unwilling to repent from, leave? Sounds to me as though this is the thing that is keeping you from experiencing forgiveness but the devil has you convinced it is something else, like apostasy.

Think about it. Also take note of the quote by Ravi Zacharias on the bottom of my post.

Sandra Miller

 2011/2/5 9:44Profile

 Re: Memoir of an Apostate....Bunyan

When I look at the apostate and the backslider I see a primary difference. When you are apostate, your conscious goes with it. You no longer have a conscious that would convict you of good and evil. It is seared as with a white hot iron.

A backslider, however, still , somewhere, no matter how deeply hidden, has this conscious that says Jesus is Lord.

"Jesus is precious to me, and I mourn over who I was and what I had done, wishing it away like it were a dream."...fearapostasy

This statement is an impossibility for the apostate one.

Please take the time to purchase and read John Bunyan's auto-biography.."Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners."

Bunyan did what you did...almost to the T....and came back with very similar ideas that you have about yourself.He ended up being an honored slave of his master overwhelmed with His mercies....until the day of his death.I believe this for you, keep fighting..[you are; this is why your here.]

You will realize that God is very good, and be at peace.

 2011/2/5 12:06

Joined: 2009/2/20
Posts: 494
Celina, Texas


I too deeply respect the truths and wisdom I have heard from growingone and ginnyrose. I would however have no reservation in questioning that which you are so sure of. You say you were saved as a teenager. So was I. I had a love for the Lord, the lost, His word, bible studies, bus ministry, Sundays and Wednesday night fellowships, defense of the faith, prayer, and a list of other things that accompanied my life. It. would be 33 years later having been in the church raising my family, teaching High School Youth, and sitting amongst the better minds in my church that God would show me His Mercy and Grace. I was saved one night when least expecting it.

I, like you was sure of my salvation, until God showed me who He was and who I was. I did not need to know what Jesus did for me because that I already knew. What I did not know was who God was and in light of that being revealed, who I was ( this bringing about true repentance and not the kind of a wounded conscience that virtualy every person on this planet has save the mentally incapable). Once I knew who God was and what I was the blood of the spotless lamb of God could be applied.

No one in our church would have ever questioned my salvation. It was only after God saved me that men questioned not my prior salvation but my sanity. If you listen to men on this web site who have given their lives in service to God then you will hear a common concern amongst them. In an age that will go down as the age of the cheap gospel ( not too far from the Nights of the crusades riding into the water for baptismal salvation) we must understand what will be the problems and grave results of it's offering.

I was the Lord of my life while professing Christ all those years. There were areas of sin that I was not willing to let go of. So is scripture true when it says that one cannot serve two masters? For that which the rich young ruler would not give up is the very thing that makes him master over his vapor like life. That in extreme contrast to being a slave to Christ where nothing is worth holding onto.

 2011/2/5 12:07Profile

Joined: 2011/1/31
Posts: 21


"Jesus is precious to me, and I mourn over who I was and what I had done, wishing it away like it were a dream."...fearapostasy

Joh 6:44 No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.

Joh 6:37 All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.

The fact that you even have a desire for the Lord has been given you by the Father. He is drawing you by the Holy Spirit.

Do not build a doctrine on one verse, but rather look into the whole counsel of God.

Respond to His drawing of you and let Him dispel all lies and lack of proper knowledge of the Word. His Spirit will not contradict His Word. You cannot say that He is precious to you if He is not drawing you and if you have become completely reprobate.

Take heart. He loves you.

 2011/2/5 12:23Profile

Joined: 2003/7/31
Posts: 2734
Phoenix, Arizona USA

 Re: Memoir of an Apostate

I would second the recommendation that you read John Bunyan's Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners. John Bunyan, who by the way, was the author of Pilgrim's Progress, found himself in your exact position, wrestling with the same verses.

What follows are some extracts from His book Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners. I encourage you to read the whole book, you can read it online at..;

Now began my heart again to ache and fear I might meet with disappointment at the last, wherefore I began, with all seriousness, to examine my former comfort, and to consider whether one that had sinned as I have done, might with confidence trust upon the faithfulness of God, laid down in those words by which I had been comforted and on which I had leaned myself. But now were brought those sayings to my mind, 'For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost, and have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come, if they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance' (Heb. 6.4-6). 'For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins, but a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries' (Heb. 10.26, 27). Even 'as Esau, who for one morsel of meat sold his birthright; for ye know how that afterward, when he would have inherited the blessing, he was rejected; for he found no place of repentance, though he sought it carefully with tears' (Heb. 12.16, 17) .

Now was the word of the gospel forced from my soul, so that no promise or encouragement was to be found in the Bible for me; and now would that saying work upon my spirit to afflict me, 'Rejoice not, O Israel, for joy as other people' (Hos. 9.1). For I saw indeed there was cause of rejoicing for those that held to Jesus; but as for me, I had cut myself off by my transgressions, and left myself neither foot-hold, nor hand-hold, amongst all the stays and props in the precious word of life...

Then that scripture gave me hope, 'I will never leave thee nor forsake thee' (Heb. 13.5). O Lord, said I, but I have left Thee. Then it answered again, 'But I will not leave thee.' For this I thank God also...

Now as touching this, that Esau sought a place of repentance; thus I thought, first, This was not for the birthright, but for the blessing; this is clear from the apostle, and is distinguished by Esau himself; 'He took away my birthright (that is, formerly); and behold, now he hath taken away my blessing' (Gen. 27.36). Secondly, Now, this being thus considered, I came again to the apostle, to see what might be the mind of God, in a New Testament style and sense, concerning Esau's sin; and so far as I could conceive, this was the mind of God, that the birthright signified regeneration, and the blessing the eternal inheritance; for so the apostle seems to hint, 'Lest there be any profane person, as Esau, who for one morsel of meat sold his birthright'; as if he should say, Lest there be any person amongst you that shall cast off all those blessed beginnings of God that at present are upon him, in order to a new birth, lest they become as Esau, even be rejected afterwards, when they would inherit the blessing.

For many there are who, in the day of grace and mercy, despise those things which are indeed the birthright to heaven, who yet, when the deciding day appears, will cry as loud as Esau, 'Lord, Lord, open to us'; but then, as Isaac would not repent, no more will God the Father, but will say, I have blessed these, yea, and they shall be blessed; but as for you, depart from me, all ye workers of iniquity (Gen. 27.33; Luke 13.25-27).

When I had thus considered these scriptures, and found that thus to understand them was not against, but according to other scriptures; this still added further to my encouragement and comfort, and also gave a great blow to that objection, to wit, that the scripture could not agree in the salvation of my soul. And now remained only the hinder part of the tempest, for the thunder was gone beyond me, only some drops did still remain, that now and then would fall upon me; but because my former frights and anguish were very sore and deep, therefore it did oft befal me still, as it befalleth those that have been scared with fire, I thought every voice was Fire, fire; every little touch would hurt my tender conscience.

But one day, as I was passing in the field, and that too with some dashes on my conscience, fearing lest yet all was not right, suddenly this sentence fell upon my soul, Thy righteousness is in heaven; and methought withal, I saw, with the eyes of my soul, Jesus Christ at God's right hand; there, I say, is my righteousness; so that wherever I was, or whatever I was a-doing, God could not say of me, He wants my righteousness, for that was just before Him. I also saw, moreover, that it was not my good frame of heart that made my righteousness better, nor yet my bad frame that made my righteousness worse; for my righteousness was Jesus Christ Himself, the same yesterday, and to-day, and for ever (Heb. 13.8).

Now did my chains fall off my legs indeed, I was loosed from my affliction and irons, my temptations had fled away; so that, from that time, those dreadful scriptures of God left off to trouble me now; now went I also home rejoicing, for the grace and love of God.

Ron Halverson

 2011/2/5 13:36Profile

Joined: 2007/8/8
Posts: 123

 Re: Memoir of an Apostate

The fear of God is the beginning of wisdom.

1John5:13 I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God that you may know that you have eternal life.

I have always been encouraged that God's mercies are new every day.

One of my favorite quotes is "It is never too late to start doing what is right."

Here is a poem for no matter where life finds you.

Never Too Late:

“It is too late! Ah, nothing is too late—

Cato learned Greek at eighty; Sophocles
Wrote his grand “Oedipus,” and Simonides
Bore off the prize of verse from his compeers
When each had numbered more than fourscore years;

And Theophrastus, at fourscore and ten,
Had begun his “Characters of Men.”

Chaucer, at Woodstock, with his nightingales,
At sixty wrote the “Canterbury Tales.”

Goethe, at Weimar, toiling to the last,
Completed “Faust” when eighty years were past.

What then? Shall we sit idly down and say,
“The night has come; it is no longer day”?

For age is opportunity no less
Than youth itself, though in another dress.

And as the evening twilight fades away,
The sky is filled with stars, invisible by day.
It is never too late to start doing what is right.


-Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

As I read your post I thought of someone who struggled with his faith.. similar to what you describe. His faith was tossed to and fro. He lived an apostate life.... far from God. A "willful rebel" if there ever was one.and he "HATED the church and spoke innumerable heresies and insults toward Christ and His people." until Grace began to work in him.

He is John Newton author of "Amazing Grace". His bio may be a good read to encourage you in your faith.

The fact that your conscious is sensitive to the things of God and your sin is good.

Here is a quote from Ronald Reagan:

How do you tell a communist? Well, it's someone who reads Marx and Lenin. And how do you tell an anti-Communist? It's someone who understands Marx and Lenin".
You can apply apostate and Christian to that.

All of us are ill deserving sinners.
….and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind. But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ— by grace you have been saved— and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable(O) riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is(S) not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. Ephesians 2

Sin will take you further than you want to go.
It will keep you longer than you want to stay,
and it will cost you more than you want to pay.

 2011/2/5 17:39Profile

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