Holman Christian Standard Bible & Once Saved - Always Saved - 08/15/2004
I discovered this site purely by accident yesterday and then, just last night, my daughter came home from school kind of upset and said her teacher was talking about evolution. I came to this site today and printed out some things for her to take to school and I intend to check her book to see if it has both views. If not, I'm going to go to the school and protest.
She did tell her teacher that she would fail any test about evolution because she was not going to listen to anything he had to say about it! Go girl! :)
I do have 2 questions for you.
First, I've read several of your articles and letters mentioning NIV and NASB, but what do you think of other translations, namely the new Holman Christian Standard? I'm Southern Baptist and Lifeway is using it exclusively in their dated Sunday School materials which is what we use at our church. Personally, I think its more accurate to the original languages because they went back to the earliest material they could find, but I'd like another opinion on it.
Also, do you believe that once you are saved, you are always saved, even if you backslide? My son was saved when he was about 13 but now he is far from living a Christian life and I would be devastated if Jesus returned and my son was not raptured with the rest of the family or if he suddenly died. I have been trying to bring him back and he has shown some interest but he is still not living right. I also have lots of people praying for him, even though he doesn't know it and I know that PRAYER WORKS but I'm still worried.
I thank God that I found this site. You have cleared up some questions I had about different "religions" like mormonism and Jehovah's witnesses. And, just in time, I got info about evolution for my daughter. God knows when we will have a need and provides for it! Praise the Lord!
CONTENDER MINISTRIES RESPONSE:
Hi Lisa. Thanks for writing. I'm glad you were able to find some information on the site that was beneficial to you. It sounds like your daughter is making a stand, and I admire her for that. I would like to suggest an alternative path for her, so long as she is attending public schools. When I was in high school, my science teacher told me, "I have to teach you evolution. I know many of you have religious beliefs that contradict evolution, and I don't want you to change your beliefs. However, you are required to learn what the THEORY of evolution is, so maintain your beliefs while you study this material." My teacher was a creationist. Now, my oldest brother is a science teacher in a public school. He too believes in biblical creationism. He is required to teach the theory of evolution, but approaches it in a similar way, and encourages discussion on things evolution doesn't answer. I think it would be a good idea for your daughter to learn the theory of evolution, so long as she is grounded in the fact that it's not true, and she takes time to study the scientific evidence for creationism. You can tell her to think of herself like people who have an apologetics ministry. We have to study the lies and deception out there in order to effectively counter them. Anyway, that's just something for you to consider. At the end of my email, I've included some links to websites dedicated to creation science. You might want to check them out too.
Regarding the HCS Bible. I hadn't heard of it before, and have since discovered that it's a new translation (the New Testament was published first in 1999, and the complete Bible was published just this year). In the mid-90's, when Zondervan indicated it was revising the NIV with gender-neutral language, the Sunday School Board of the Southern Baptist Convention decided to oversee the production of a new translation (they had previously been using the NIV). Unfortunately, they misunderstood, as the language of the NIV didn't change at all. Rather a new version, the TNIV (Today's New International Version) was developed with gender-neutral language. The TNIV is not the same as the NIV, and I predict the TNIV will soon die out. Anyway, the translation board for the HCS Bible used the same greek text that the NIV and NASB translation committees did -- the Nestle-Aland 27th edition. The HCS translators used the same text, but decided to make a translation less stylistic than the NIV, but less "word-for-word" than the NASB. They wanted to strike a balance between the two. Like other reliable modern translation, they include (but bracket) the Marcan ending (Mark 16:9-20), and exclude the Johannine Comma found in the KJV. Considering the textual basis of the HCS, and considering it is in the same genre as the NIV and NASB, I would consider it to be an acceptable translation (with the caveat that since I haven't read the HCS, I can't speak for the quality of translation).
Now the last thing you asked about was "once saved, always saved." There are some who believe that at any cost. There are others who believe if a Christian takes the Lord's name in vain after striking his or her thumb with a hammer, that their salvation is lost. My personal beliefs are somewhere in between. I do not believe that a Christian has to live completely righteously to retain their salvation. This tends towards works-based salvation taught by Mormons and Catholics, which is completely unbiblical. However, I also believe we risk our salvation if we deny Jesus and the Holy Spirit. Some people lose their faith, and reject the gift they had previously accepted -- salvation through Jesus Christ. We all know people who are in the same boat as your son, and all we can do is pray for them. The good news is that I was once where your son was. I had accepted Christ at a young age, but in my 20's I began living a worldly and ungodly life. I had a mother praying for me, just as your son has one praying for him. I took my wife on this worldly walk with me, and the Holy Spirit reached out to her and turned her around. The Holy Spirit then used her to shake the stupid out of me. Even when you feel like despairing, don't give up hope or faith. The prayers of the righteous avail much. And I will add your son to our prayer list as well. God bless you as you contend for the faith, and the faith of your family.
Ben and Jennifer Rast
Creation Science Links:
Have your daughter print this and take this to school: