Questions & Answers on Christian backsliding

About this Q&A

Backsliding or falling away is one of Satan’s most effective weapons against us. In this Q&A I will answer six questions often asked about backsliding.

(1) What is backsliding?

In Christian theology “backsliding” or “falling away” is a term used to describe a process by which a believer reverts to his old state of life and walk away from God to pursue worldly desires.

(2) Why do believers backslide?

(A) Lust of the flesh – Solomon fell in love with many foreign women despite God’s warnings. Later they shifted his heart to other gods. (1 Kings 11:1-8)

(B) Giving the devil a foothold – By being a dishonest man Judas gave the devil a foothold in him. (John 12:6)

(C) Pride – When pride comes we feel we don’t need God. This also causes us to fall away. (Luke 15:12-13)

(D) Fear – Believers can backslide for the fear of death. Often at the face of persecution. (Mark 14:27; 14:50-52; 14:66-72.)

(E) Doubt – Many of Jesus’ disciples doubted his teaching and did not accompany him any longer let alone following him. (Luke 15:12-13)

(F) Loneliness – The lonely believer has nobody to help him when he feels spiritually discouraged. (Ecclesiastes 4:10)

(3) What are the consequences of falling away?

Such people, unless they repent are destined for eternal damnation (Luke 15:17-20; Hebrews 6:4-6)

(4) What can the church do?

We are to restore them but take precaution. So that we also will not backslide. (James 5:19; Galatians 6:1)

(5) How to know when someone falls away?

You cannot unless they express it by their behavior. In fact some people are very good in concealing their true spiritual condition from others.

(6) How can I keep from backsliding?

(A) Resisting the lusts of the flesh: Each day, prayerfully yield your physical body and its needs to the power of the Holy Spirit that you will not gratify the bodily lusts. (Romans 12:1)

(B) Resist temptations: Surrender your entire self to the will of God and resist the devil. When you do he cannot have a foothold in you. (James 4:7)

(C) Deal with pride: Search your thoughts, speech and actions regularly for even hints of pride. It will keep pride at the bay. (2 Corinthians 13:5)

(D) Deal with fear: Clothe yourself with the armor of God so you can stand firm and fight the fears which cripple your faith. (Ephesians 6:10-18)

(V) Deal with doubt: Initiate a mentoring relationship with a mature believer or a leader who will intercede for you. (Luke 22:32)

(E) Deal with loneliness: Stop being a Lone Ranger and enjoy the company and fellowship in the body of Christ. If you fall someone will be there to help. (Hebrews 10:25)

Closing

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