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John Owen on Apostasy

In the current debate over Justification, it is argued by those holding to the "new paradigm" that Christians are those united with Christ through baptism, thus equating union with Christ to membership in the visible or "historical" church, and that this union can actually be broken through apostasy. Their teaching on this point emphasizes the role of works in salvation and apostasy. They present Hebrews 6:4-6 as one text in support of their teaching.

In contrast, the following passages by the great theologian John Owen offer a contrast to their teaching. For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost, and have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come, If they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame. - Hebrews 6:4-6.

In studying the words in this text, we must see their context, the persons meant, and what is intended by these words.