What happens to people who succumb to the influence of the evil one after belief and confession? This common occurrence is known as backsliding. For the most part, we acknowledge backsliding as a common occurrence, but backsliding should not be promoted as a way of life. The backslider is one who after having confessed Christ, repeatedly submits to the influence of past temptations. They become backsliders because they have yet to submit their desires to God and become delivered from their ungodly ways.
Picture this: Children on a giant slide love to climb up the slide and usually keep sliding backwards; making getting to the top difficult, if not impossible for some. God states, in Jeremiah 3:14, that He is married to the backslider. Since God established the institution of marriage, surely He can determine how he feels about the backslider and the consequences. There are indeed consequences to being a backslider. The backslider who comes to himself and repents of his sins retains his position with God just as a couple reconciles their relationship when problems arise.
The fate of the backslider who never repents falls into the hands of an angry God. The bible tells us that this person can expect an even greater terror than the one who never confessed any knowledge of Christ. On the other hand, we are told in I John 1:9, 10 “that if we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
If God forgives us, should we care about the forgiveness of others? Who is it that we should be concerned about as it pertains to our status with God? It is without a doubt, the most fruitless exercise in the world to try to please people. Therefore, our only concern should be in pleasing God. According to God’s Word, we, who choose to care about what God thinks, are wise because He is the only one from whom we are seeking acceptance.
Unfortunately, many people attempt to seek acceptance from entities—church folks and institutions—who could care less about a person as an individual. Although there are some churches and other individuals who genuinely care about people, they are too few in number to make a real difference. Consider the following:
A young lady, who did not begin her life’s journey with any understanding of the Word or God’s way of doing things, falls short of the mark, in a number of ways. However, once she has been shown the light and comes to a place in her life where she has now established a right relationship with God, should she not be accepted into the fold as though she has never sinned? [This example uses a young lady because females are often scrutinized more often and judged more harshly for their past sins than males.]
If we truly believe the Word, then we have to acknowledge the fact that once God forgives us, He tosses our sins into the sea of forgetfulness (Micah 7:18, 19). Since our sins are cast into the sea, who has a right to go fishing for them, in an attempt to bring them to the surface? We must forever be on guard against the wiles of the enemy. We cannot allow him or his minions to superimpose their views into our lives. Therefore, whenever anyone attempts to bring our past to the surface, we must remind them—tactfully, if possible—that our past shortcomings have been confessed and forgiven. They do not have a right to fish in God’s sea.
This is an excerpt from: Saved, But Not Yet Delivered! available on amazon.com