Did Anyone See My Salvation?

My baptism was a solemn but impactful experience. That early morning, as I emerged from the sea at Vigie Beach, I could almost see my sins floating away into the horizon along with the old Jason. The date was March 8th 1992 and I was a member of the World Wide Church of God. I had accepted Jesus as my personal saviour and I was saved. I was filled with the Holy Spirit and was washed clean by the blood. Now, 20 years later, I no longer believe in deities, human sacrifices, and the afterlife. Does that mean I have become unsaved and is it possible to lose your salvation after you’ve received it? What a weird concept—one that
Christians still cannot agree on.
Some will argue that I was never saved in the first place, while others will say that I am still saved but only under the influence of Satan. All I need to do in order to reactivate my salvation is repent and believe. I’m not sure how that applies in my case. Do I go back in time to the period when I didn’t know any better and accepted religion wholesale without question, or do I now pretend that I believe in order to regain my salvation? How about God sending an angel to appear before me in one of my dreams, like he did in the good old days, to say: “Jason, son of Joseph, fear not for I am real.” If it was enough evidence for them, I’m sure it would suffice for me too.
There was nothing fake about my baptism or my desire to be baptized. In my church, one was never coerced into baptism. Baptism was something that one willingly did when one was ready and spiritually mature.
I was never one of those part-time Christians either. Church was all I knew from birth. Christianity was literally a way of life. Bible study was not something that was done only on a Tuesday night, but it was a family routine—every morning religiously at 6am. Prayer was habitual, personal communication with God and not meaningless recitations.     As an adolescent growing up, I had an active social life which consisted of wholesome fun with mainly friends from church. I paid tithes and gave offerings diligently and up to the moment of writing this
essay, a piece of pig has never touched my lips.
I practiced what I preached as well, so that back then, when I encouraged my students to practice sexual abstinence, rest assured
that I too was doing the same. In fact, when I got baptized at the age of 21, fornication was certainly not on my list of things to repent for. So, while my intention is not to sound like the biblical Pharisee, if I wasn’t saved, then I am curious as to what was missing. Did I mention that I fasted regularly; 24 hours without food or a drop of water? I was even afraid to brush my teeth for fear that some of the water would escape into my gastro-intestinal tract.
I have no doubt in my mind what went wrong though, or rather, what went right. It’s quite easy to explain. I simply grew up! I started to question my faith and the bible; I read widely and started to think for myself—something which religion directly or indirectly discourages. Most importantly, I began to question the integrity, perfection, and love that the Christian God is supposed to have and I found him wanting—big time. But that would not be the Christian explanation for my “backsliding”. Their interpretation would most likely be that I allowed Satan to lead me astray, which would lead me to the conclusion that if Satan
does exist, he is so much more powerful and effective than God.
Here I am, all weak and incapable of doing it on my own. I turn to the almighty God and place my life in his hands, expecting some kind of guidance and support.  And what do I get? I am practically left alone with my thoughts to make my own decisions. Did I need to be baptized and saved to make my own decisions? Where was the power of the blood? Where was the Holy Spirit which was supposed to convict and guide me? What went wrong with the wisdom and intelligence that God supposedly gave to me? Why is it that my brain no longer allows me to believe things which make absolutely no sense? If Satan is responsible it’s because God has retired from active duty, he didn’t care to give a brother a hand, or he is just no match for Satan.
A loving parent does all in his power to make sure that his children receive all the support that they need in order to succeed—whether or not they ask for it—especially when that parent has let loose another intelligent, powerful being, whose sole purpose is to deceive you. That parent’s advice and instructions are clear and not cloaked in parables, metaphor, and mystery. He understands that in order for you to make wise choices you must have knowledge, experience,
and the ability to think critically. That means he would expect you to seriously question a 2000 year old book that is incapable of being revised or edited, and one from which a myriad of interpretations and religions emanate. He would not expect you to trust so easily the interpretations of preachers, who have proven themselves to be just as ignorant and misguided as the rest of us.
Meanwhile, Satan’s presence is believed to be felt everywhere. He is clever and aggressive. From the time you are born he begins to tempt and persuade. He is busy influencing human behaviour and seeking whom he may devour. He is supposedly in our music, on television, on the internet, and apparently closely associated with the natural urges of all human beings. The guy is a worker. He is
indeed the “prince of the power of the air” and the “ruler of this world”.
God could take a page out of Satan’s book.

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