First, it is my sincere and honest belief that "Salvation is of The Lord". I believe that God elected his people and the body of Christ before he set his eternal plan into motion. My conversion and faith in the gospel was given to me by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, who has been with me since birth because Christ had atoned and paid for my sin debt before I was born, and before then even in the mind and purpose of our God. Because of the Spirit I have my faith in Christ: Who he is, what he did, and what he will do. I believe in Christ when he said in John 6:47 "Very truly I tell you, the one who believes has eternal life.". Although I did not properly believe until but two years ago, I still had eternal life because here I now stand, believing fully. I also believe that all men without distinction who believe that Jesus is the Son of God and that he saved them from their sins is a born-again believer. That is not to say that they believed the first time they heard the gospel, or that after their belief they had a perfect understanding of theology and lived righteous Spirit-led lives. No, but only that they now believe. Make no mistake, that belief and that faith is a supernatural gift from God, and since "Salvation is of The Lord", only HE determines when they will come to faith, how, and what they will do after they receive it. Let us be clear, they were saved before their faith, for The Father elected them, the Son died for them, and the Spirit was with and is most certainly in them. All I know is that our belief in Jesus and our faith in him is a gift, not a working of human will or effort, but of God's Spirit on those Christ died for. Although the Church separates itself from other "believers" who hold to different theology, it should be unified in the belief that what Christ said rings true, "... The one who believes has eternal life.". Not the one with a perfect knowledge of the divine, not the one who lives a life completely free from the sinful nature within his Adamic body, no, but the one who simply believes! Get this straight, we believe in Christ because we have the Holy Spirit, we have the Holy Spirit because Christ cleansed us from our sin, and he died for us because The Father elected us. Now, the evidence of our election and childhood of God IS our belief. That is who the Church is made of, that is the body of Christ! We must understand that despite that God has ordained that we all be confused and hold to different theologies. Make no mistake, he did this for a reason we do not yet understand, but we know it is true. Why also do many "believers" live unrighteous lives? Is it not because God ordained it to be so? Yes, he did, but he could have also ordained that this be remedied by the correct teaching of the Gospel. These unrighteous believers probably are waiting for a pastor to tell them they have God living inside them! This would ease the burden of trying to be righteous and please God through our flesh. The Gospel is that Christ died so we wouldn't have to pay the punishment for our sins, but that we could instead be reconciled to God and be made the objects of his Love and Mercy (A side note, but because "God is Love", does that mean he Loves everything? Even Sin? No, of course not, he Loves what and whom he will. Why did he choose Abram? Why Issac and not Ishmael? Jacob and not Esau? You and not your unbelieving friend? God is not obligated to save any sinner, but he has in order to display his Mercy and Grace.). No works of man could ever satisfy the eternal punishment required for the smallest of sins against an eternal God, that is why the eternal son suffered punishment in our place. Now, when Jesus satisfied the Justice of God, we were considered Holy in his sight, being given the righteousness of Christ himself! That is why the Spirit could indwell you and give you the faith you now have. As children of God living in fallen bodies we must remember it is God who saves, and only he determines how and when a person will be saved. Before time God ordained you would be what you are: Calvinist, Arminian, Baptist, Pentecostal, Catholic, Universalist. God uses you through what he made you to be, and it is always possible he can yet change you. But we must Love one another as he commanded, for it is our belief in Christ and the Holy Spirit that makes us Children of God, not anything else. Do you believe in Christ? Rest assured you have eternal life with God, whether you know it or not. Do you not believe? It is then uncertain to say if God has elected you, and if you will ever receive the faith. It is my belief God has hidden these things for his purposes, and if he wishes to now reveal them to whom he will, he may. He is God, the author of Life. Or perhaps I am a heretic leading others and myself to hell, but how are you to discern this? Has God himself spoken from the heavens directly into your ears? Has he granted you an infallible understanding? If not, please consider the words I have written. With Love to all who hear, C.