For those who beleive in the doctrine of Once Saved Always Saved (OSAS). How does one reconcile our need to not only confess our sins, but to ask God for forgiveness for those sins?

Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us

Some might say that in Mathew 6 the word should be translated as "debts" which are not necessarily "sins." Yet the parallel passage in Luke 11 uses the word "ἁμαρτία" which clearly speaks of sin.


If we have received forgiveness in full, and it is completed as many would suggest, why would the Lord have us petition (Pray) for our forgiveness when it has already, according to the OSAS doctrine, been freely given and can never be taken away?

This question are for the Faith Practices that adhere to 'assurance of salvation' which includes most but not all the ecclesial bodies that broke and continue to break away from the Catholic Church.

  • Are you familiar with the idea, contextual to eastern Mediterranean culture, about debts of honor being a contextual meaning of that line in the Lord's prayer? Sometimes when a term or word crosses both time and a language barrier, some nuances of meaning can be lost. This keeps biblical scholars busy. Sep 14, 2016 at 21:51
  • second clarification bit: do you and the groups that hold to OSAS believe, or not believe, that the Lord's Prayer was given to the faithful by Him, possibly with a particular purpose? I ask that because a lot of scripture suffers losses in meaning when taken out of context/cherry picked. Sep 14, 2016 at 21:55
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    There are plenty of passages that serve as a basis for asking forgiveness. Is your question specific to the Lord's Prayer, or, more generally asking about all such scriptures? Something like, "According to OSAS, why must Christians continue to ask for forgiveness?" I think the answer to this question will be pretty consistent across the various OSAS groups, but if you are specifically asking about the purpose of the Lord's Prayer the answers will have a different focus. Sep 14, 2016 at 23:01
  • Where do we learn that in OSAS forgiveness has already been given for all sins past, present, and future? This is not stated, but implied in the OP. Where in OSAS is is implied that if one's sin is not forgiven, then he loses his salvation?
    – Steve
    Sep 15, 2016 at 4:10
  • @Nathaniel Let us focus firstly on the Lords Prayer, on how we are to pray. Not conversion, but as people living in covenant with Christ. I don't want to get to envolved because being in Covenant requires actions (works) by believers, and that would confuse the central theme of this question which is, Why must we Pray for that which we have already received and is completed in us? (supposedly) When I say "us" I of course do not mean Catholics but those who support this doctrine.
    – Marc
    Sep 15, 2016 at 14:39

5 Answers 5


The issue you raised is rooted in the concept of justification.

Through the fulfillment of the will of the Father in His Son, Jesus Christ, the Father declared us righteous in His sight. That is, the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ is our justification, the declaration of God that we are free of guilt and penalty of sin and acceptable to Him (Romans 4:25, NIV):

He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification.

Our justification also marks the beginning of sanctification, a continual process of being made holy by the power of the Holy Spirit, a lifelong process that makes us more and more like Jesus Christ.

We can argue that the Lord’s Prayer is the foremost declaration of our faith in the fulfillment of the will of the Father in His Son. Therefore, it is a means to justify ourselves to the Father. Via the Lord’s Prayer, prayed daily, we are led by the Holy Spirit in our daily lives and become more like Jesus Christ – the precise outcome of sanctification!

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    This does not seem to answer the question at all. Additionally, I'm very curious as to which bible version has Romans 6:25. The questions ask why a Christion must continually ask for forgiveness when all their sins have been forgiven. Not only does it sound like a work (denying the perfect sacrifice on the cross and in so, rejecting the Gospel ** protestant position**) but it seems like a pointless activity to ask for something you have already received. Did God word the Lords prayer incorrectly?
    – Marc
    Nov 22, 2018 at 13:37
  • My apology. It is Romans 4:25, not 6:25. I have corrected that in the main text above. Nov 22, 2018 at 20:29
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    Forgiveness of sin by the Blood of Jesus is conditional. This is clear from 1 John 1:6-7. "If we say that we have fellowship with Him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth; but if we walk in the Light as He Himself is in the Light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin." Nov 22, 2018 at 21:04

This prayer was given to Israel and prior to Christ's death, burial, and resurrection. The shed blood of Jesus Christ was the sufficient payment to God for all of our sins past, present, and future. Israel's past sins were also paid for, but their future sins (post-cross) will not be forgiven until Christ returns:

Acts 3:19

"Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord."

In contrast to what Peter says to the remnant Jewish church of believers, notice what Paul says to us today, the church, the body of Christ:

Ephesians 1:7

"In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;"

Colossians 1:14

"In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:"

2 Corinthians 5:19

"To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation."

You may notice that Paul never mentions to us how to get our sins forgiven in any of his thirteen epistles (Romans through Philemon). This is because our sins have already been forgiven through the blood of Jesus Christ.

In fact, believing that our sins were forgiven through Christ is part of the requirement for salvation today:

Romans 3:25

"Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;"

1 Corinthians 15:1-4

"Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; 2 By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. 3 For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; 4 And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:"

Paul goes on to say that we today do not really know what to pray for as we ought to:

Romans 8:26

"Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered."

However, he does say that we should always pray with thanksgiving:

Ephesians 5:19-20

"Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; 20 Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ;"

Praying to God for forgiveness of sin would only indicate a lack of faith in what Jesus Christ completed for our sin payment on the cross. Rather than pray for forgiveness of sin, pray to God with thanks for the forgiveness that was brought to the world by Christ's death, burial, and resurrection and receive the free gift of salvation through having faith alone in this.

Ephesians 2:8-9

"For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9 Not of works, lest any man should boast."


Once saved always saved, of course. When saved you have eternal life. The clue is in the description. Once saved you become the bride of the one who hates divorce. Once saved you become a child of God. Born again. All the promises of God become yours. Joint heirs with Jesus, clothed in his righteousness.

God believes in permanent marriage between a man and a woman. Once married always married. But spouses upset each other and so need to ask each other for forgiveness. A marriage can be happy or unhappy, same with our relationship with God.. it can be marred by our failure to seek daily forgiveness.

A Christian is in a relationship with God. So needs to ask for forgiveness. If he does not the relationship is not dissolved, but it will be damaged.

For a sinner to have a healthy relationship with anyone there needs to be a constant willingness to ask for forgiveness.

  • A spouse usually does require asking for forgiveness. Will they forgive? Maybe, maybe not. If the spouse were to say to the other that they know mistakes will be made because of who they are (a mistake maker), but will stay with and love them forever anyway, then the mistake making spouse may find the power needed to overcome making many future mistakes. God forgave (past tense) the world of all trespasses through Christ's shed blood. Asking for forgiveness would indicate that the one asking has not yet believed that they were forgiven through Christ. The "relationship" has then not yet began. Feb 13 at 14:10
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    What I am trying to say is that daily sins do not undo the marriage vows, though they spoil the marriage. But the one asking for forgiveness does not doubt they are married. Likewise daily sins do not stop our forgiven state. They may however undermine our sense of being forgiven. The Christian life is a life of daily repentance, we love forgiveness so much we keep trying to stay close to God by asking continually. When the Christian asks for mercy, he asks as a loved child of God. He is not asking as a damned sinner, he is asking as a bride of Christ, one gone from condemnation to life. Feb 13 at 15:38
  • "Confessing" may be a better term than "asking for forgiveness". Confessing could be a relationship builder, but asking for forgiveness would indicate lack of faith in Christ's blood as the sufficient payment for the forgiveness of sin that was completed on the cross and on our behalf. "Marriage" may not have been the best analogy for either of us to use also, as believers today are actually the body of Christ (not bride). That is certainly another topic though! Feb 13 at 16:16
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    Well, OK, but it was the Lord himself who teaches us to say Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our trespasses... Who am I to disagree? There are many pictures and representations for the church: his body and his bride (Rev 21:2), his disciples, his friends, his brethren (Heb 2:11) are some. Feb 13 at 18:04
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    I take it you are dispensationalist, and we are not going to agree, so perhaps we can just agree to differ and move on. Every blessing Feb 13 at 19:49

I am one of the OSAS you speak about.

So when a person confesses his sin to God and repents of his sinful life for the first time he is born again.

In John 3 Jesus says that we must be born again to see God's kingdom.

We are saved because Christ suffered in our place.

He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.

2 Corinthians 5:21 New American Standard Bible

However, we still have a sinful nature. We will still sin, but we will keep God's law more by his grace. Since sin is an offense against God we must repent of it and turn back to him. However, no Christian who has repented will ever, ever be lost.

In John 10 Jesus says no one can snatch his sheep out of his hand.

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  • Those are the Bible sound bites. They simply ignore all the other scripture that indicate views contrary to those you have been taught. That's when stretching and bending of the word of God takes place, its like forcing a puzzle price into a place that it does not fit creating not only one problem with the overall picture but many, as the continuity of the word of God is distorted in many places not just the one. Imagine moving some notes in Mozart's concerto's how it would sound to those who know the original beauty.
    – Marc
    Oct 8, 2016 at 12:29
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    I was answering as one of the OSAS. Someone else may answer differently. I was not addressing the other verses here, however I believe OSAS because Jesus said no one can snatch his sheep out of his hand. Oct 9, 2016 at 19:01

The way I best can explain it is once you are born again (Jesus)he becomes your father . Just like you have a earthly father if you are disobedient you break a bond or fellowship with your earthly father ( does not mean that your dad stops loving you or caring for you ) but in order to restore that good relationship one must apologize for your short comings and in doing so it restores your relationship . Or if you don't he may chasten you as a child and in that you may repent and restor back your fellowship . Has nothing to do with salvation . So to repent is because you are a child of the king and you want to maintain a good relationship . Not because you will lose your salvation . Ephesians 2:8-9 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9 Not of works, lest any man should boast


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