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Why do people separate from God?
Thank you for asking your question about election and losing your faith. I hope that this answer will encourage you, even though some of it may be challenging.
You do not give details in your question regarding who it is that you feel is separated from God. It may be a friend or family member, it could be a person or story you have heard, or it could even be a hypothetical situation and you are just wanting to know more about being close to God.
Within Christianity, there are different trains of thought regarding being separated from God. Rather than going into detail with these, we will look at what the Bible says and how we can stay close to God.
The Bible tells us that by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God (Ephesians 2:8), meaning that we have not saved ourselves, but that it is by the work of Jesus' death on the cross alone. We are told that Christ had offered for all time a single sacrifice for sins (Hebrews 10:12), meaning that any sin we have committed, past present or future, has been paid for by Christ.
Further to this, we are also shown within the scriptures that he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him (Ephesians 1:4). It may seem from our perspective that we decide to choose God, but the Bible shows it the other way around; God has chosen to save us.
God has allowed us free will to make our own decisions. He is not the author of sin and individuals have personal responsibility for their actions. However, the Bible tells us that our salvation is in God's hands, not our own. If we belong to Christ, he does not let us go.
The argument is that if it seems a person who once walked in the faith then leaves for whatever reason, then they were actually never truly in the faith to begin with. This may be difficult for us to accept, but it seems to be the Biblical principle.
So what do we do about people who once attended church and currently do not? I believe that answer is the same as any non-Christian: we present the truth of the gospel and pray for their repentance.
There are stories, probably even some within your church, where people have prayed for a loved one, sometimes for many years, and they have eventually come to know Jesus truly and fully as Lord and Saviour. Be like the people who pray for their loved ones, life up in prayer the people you long to be saved, that their hearts would be softened to the Good News of Jesus and that they would make a full repentance for the forgiveness of their sins.
In summary, people may choose to leave the church for all sorts of reasons, but the Bible tells us that a person cannot 'lose their salvation'. We should pray for our friends and family members who do not yet know Jesus as Lord and Saviour, just as we would with any non-Christian.
He saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit (Titus 3:5).
I do hope this general answer to your question goes some way to helping you find peace with God through Jesus Christ our Lord. If you want to know more about what Jesus has done for you please watch the video on the main part of our site: www.lookingforGod.com
In closing, I want to encourage you to get more involved with your local church. It would be good to speak to a Christian leader or another trusted church individual regarding your question. I know they would be delighted to further answer you as well as offer prayer and support as you continue your spiritual journey: www.lookingforgod.com/churchfinder
Please use our Interactive Answer Matrix and feel free to ask another question. Our helpful staff are praying for you and waiting to try and answer to you from the Bible, and will be delighted to tell you more about Jesus Christ the Lord, the Saviour of the world. www.lookingforgod.com/your-questions
*All Scripture references are taken From The English Standard Version of the Holy Bible unless stated otherwise
*If anything in this answer affects you directly, then please feel free to call our confidential prayer line in the UK on 0845 4567729, where trained Christian volunteers will take your call and pray both for you and with you. If you are outside of the UK then you may submit your request for prayer on line at www.ucb.co.uk/prayerline
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