Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
March 8, 1962
NUMBER 43, PAGE 4,13a

You Are Lost --- Unless


Steve Hudgins, Ocala, Florida

It is hoped that this title will startle and challenge you to some serious thinking and study on the matter of your soul's condition before God. Remember the statement of Jesus, "Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it." (Matt. 7:14) To the question, "Are you saved?" many answer, "Yes" who actually are without knowledge of the conditions upon which God has promised to save. How do you answer this question? Upon what do you base your claim? Is it because you are religious — maybe devoutly so? Many religious people are lost. Saul of Tarsus was a devoutly religious person but a chief sinner, "For ye have heard of my conversation in time past in the Jews' religion, how that beyond measure I persecuted the church of God, and wasted it: And profited in the Jews' religion above many of my equals in mine own nation." (Gal. 1:13, 14) "This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief." (1 Tim. 1:15) Is it because you are satisfied, contented, at peace? The information one has determines his feelings about things. A person may receive false information, accepting it as truth, and thus have a false feeling of safety and security. Jacob's false assumption, based on the deceit of his sons, caused him to disbelieve the truth that Joseph was still alive. (Gen. 37:29-34; 45:25, 26) Feelings often deceive in business, love, travel, etc. You wouldn't claim citizenship in this nation nor ownership of property by your feelings. We have more reliable standards. Why then claim citizenship in God's kingdom or a right to a home in heaven on your feelings? The Bible is the reliable standard but many are not aware of the need of studying and complying with it in order to have salvation.

All need to heed the warning of 2 Cor. 4:3, 4, "But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost; In whom the god of this world bath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them." Converting souls to Christ and to His truth is made more difficult by the blinding Satan is doing through his ministers (2 Cor. 11:13-15) in the much erroneous and false teaching that is being done. Due to such teaching people are made to feel that it is well with their souls, that they are saved when they have not met the requirements God has given. Efforts to convert these people are often futile because their false feeling of safety and security has built up an immunity to obedience and thus to salvation. Such a person may listen to gospel preaching and say he enjoys it, but he listens not as one lost but as one who considers himself saved, thinking, "Though this is not what I did, it is not applicable to me because I am already saved." He supposes there are different ways of salvation because of good people at different "churches." Satan has thus blinded such a person to the gospel.


YOU ARE LOST — unless you have obeyed the gospel of Christ. To be lost is terrible — it is to be without Christ, without hope and without God. (Eph. 2:12) Many have never been taught, nor have they any conception of the necessity of obeying the gospel. Jesus taught that man must do the Father's will, "Not everyone that saith unto Me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven." (Matt. 7:21) Peter's question, "....what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?" (1 Pet. 4:17) implies that there is no hope for such a person. Paul taught that those who know not God and obey not the gospel would have vengeance taken on them in flaming fire and he destroyed from the presence of the Lord. (2 Thess. 1:7-9) The Romans were freed from sin when they obeyed from the heart the form of doctrine that was delivered them. (Rom. 6:17, 18) This they did by dying to sin, being buried with the Lord in baptism and being raised to walk in newness of life thus imitating the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ. (Rom. 6:1-5; 1 Cor. 15:1-4) Have you obeyed the gospel like the Romans?


YOU ARE LOST — unless you are in Christ. Salvation is in Christ, "Therefore I endure all things for the elect's sake, that they may also obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory." (2 Tim. 2:10) Peter, in referring to Christ, said, "Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved." (Arts 4:12) Redemption is in Christ — "Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of His dear Son: In Whom we have redemption through His blood, even the forgiveness of sins." (Col. 1:13, 14) Eternal life is in Christ Jesus — "And this is the record, that God bath given to us eternal life, and this life is in His Son." (I John 5:11) To be a new creature is to be in Christ, "Therefore if any man is in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new." (2 Cor. 5:17) Since salvation, redemption, eternal life and new creatures are in Christ it is necessary to be in Him to be saved. How does one get into Christ? We are baptized into Him; "Know ye not that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into His death?" (Rom.6:3) Christ shed His blood in His death, we are baptized into His death and thus contact His blood. (John 19:32-34; Rom. 6:1-5) We put on Christ in baptism, "For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ." (Gal. 3:27) Baptism practiced by denominational churches does not and cannot put one into Christ. It is by denominational authority for a denominational purpose and no claim is made for it to the end that it puts one in Christ.


YOU ARE LOST — unless you are in the Lord's church. Living in a land of "many churches" it is hard for many to realize that the Lord died for and established one church. A study of a few scriptures should convince an honest mind of the truth of this matter. "Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which He hath purchased with His own blood." (Acts 20:28) Christ gave Himself for the church. "Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave Himself for it." (Eph. 5:25) "And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved." (Acts 2:47) He is still doing this. Christ is the Saviour of the church, "For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the Head of the church: and He is the Saviour of the body." (Eph. 5:23) How does one become a member of the Lord's church? When he obeys the gospel the Lord adds him to the church. (Acts 2:27-41, 47) It is not something that man joins but a body to which he is added. It is by baptism that all get into the one body, "For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink of one Spirit." (I Cor. 12:13) This one body is not divided into many denominations nor is it the best people in the denominations but it is the one body, the church over which Christ rules and reigns as King, "And hath put all things under His feet, and gave Him to be the Head over all things to the church, Which is His body, the fulness of Him that filleth all in all." (Eph. 1:22, 23)

By studying these scriptures it is seen that obeying the gospel, getting into Christ and becoming a member of His church are one and the same. Won't you comply with these terms?


YOU ARE LOST — unless you are a faithful Christian. Not only is it necessary to obey the gospel, get into Christ and into His church but one must also be a faithful Christian. A Christian cannot afford to neglect his salvation. (Heb. 2:1-4) He is to walk after the Spirit, "For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God. But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His." (Rom. 8:5-9) He is to believe to the saving of the soul, not drawing back to perdition. (Heb. 10:38, 39) We are kept through faith (1 Pet. 1:3-5) and we are to keep this faith unto death. (Rev. 2:10)

Why not obey the gospel now? Believe, repent, confess, and be baptized into Christ. (John 3:16; Lk. 13:3; Acts 8:37; Acts 2:38; Rom. 6:1-5)