Telling those who profess to believe in Jesus, yet who live lifestyles of willful sin, that they are still saved as long as they haven’t purposefully renounced their faith in Jesus, is a message of counterfeit grace and of the false gospel of lawlessness which will cause many to be deceived into thinking they are saved while they are truly lost. Even if some teaching this are not living lifestyles of willful sin, the Lord wants us to understand that we will be held accountable for those who are deceived and lost through this false teaching. Much damage has been done by those assuring goats that they are sheep and tares that they are wheat.
The Lord gave me this verse twice yesterday, confirming again that it is not necessary for people to deny or renounce Him with their mouths; many deny and renounce Him by their actions, even while claiming to know Him.
They profess to know God [to recognize, perceive, and be acquainted with Him], but deny and disown and renounce Him by what they do; they are detestable and loathsome, unbelieving and disobedient and disloyal and rebellious, and [they are] unfit and worthless for good work (deed or enterprise) of any kind. Titus 1:16
He has made it very clear in His Word how we can know if we are truly remaining and abiding in Him (these are just a few).
“And this is how we may discern [daily, by experience] that we are coming to know Him [to perceive, recognize, understand, and become better acquainted with Him]: if we keep (bear in mind, observe, practice) His teachings (precepts, commandments). Whoever says, I know Him [I perceive, recognize, understand, and am acquainted with Him] but fails to keep and obey His commandments (teachings) is a liar, and the Truth is not in him. But he who keeps (treasures) His Word [who bears in mind His precepts, who observes His message in its entirety], truly in him has the love of and for God been perfected (completed, reached maturity). By this we may perceive (know, recognize, and be sure) that we are in Him: Whoever says he abides in Him ought [as a personal debt] to walk and conduct himself in the same way in which He walked and conducted Himself.” I John 2:3-6
“No one who abides in Him [who lives and remains in communion with and in obedience to Him—deliberately, knowingly, and habitually] commits (practices) sin. No one who [habitually] sins has either seen or known Him [recognized, perceived, or understood Him, or has had an experiential acquaintance with Him]. Boys (lads), let no one deceive and lead you astray. He who practices righteousness [who is upright, conforming to the divine will in purpose, thought, and action, living a consistently conscientious life] is righteous, even as He is righteous. [But] he who commits sin [who practices evildoing] is of the devil [takes his character from the evil one], for the devil has sinned (violated the divine law) from the beginning. The reason the Son of God was made manifest (visible) was to undo (destroy, loosen, and dissolve) the works the devil [has done]. No one born (begotten) of God [deliberately, knowingly, and habitually] practices sin, for God’s nature abides in him [His principle of life, the divine sperm, remains permanently within him]; and he cannot practice sinning because he is born (begotten) of God. By this it is made clear who take their nature from God and are His children and who take their nature from the devil and are his children: no one who does not practice righteousness [who does not conform to God’s will in purpose, thought, and action] is of God; neither is anyone who does not love his brother (his fellow believer in Christ).” I John 3:6-10 AMP –
Though the wording of the KJV has led to much misunderstanding and misinterpretation of these passages, the original Greek present active verb forms clearly supports this translation in the Amplified.
When we water down the definitions of “believe” and “faith” in Jesus to describe merely a mental ascent to who Jesus is and what He did for us, which does not produce the transformed life of a true follower of Christ, we teach people that they need have nothing more than the devil’s faith ~ he knew the truth about God but failed to follow Him (James 2:14-26). This is not God’s definition of saving faith in Jesus. Jesus made clear that it is not those who merely call Him Lord who are saved, but those who live under His Lordship, who do His Father’s will (Matthew 7:21-29, Matthew 5-7). We must understand and teach God’s definitions of believing in and receiving Jesus as our Lord and Savior or we will continue to propagate a demonic deception with horrifying eternal consequences for many. The love of God will cause us to tell people the truth while there is still time, even if it’s not what they want to hear.
Praying for us all!