Get it straight!
First get this one thing straight; there is but one forgiveness, equal for all and equally available to all.
Being forgiven and saved according to what religion says is normally totally separate from the the experience that the bible describes as being reborn with the gifts of the Holy Spirit, who is the only access to God's life for you with his wisdom, knowledge, healing, compassion and understanding.
Forgiveness is a free gift from God given to those who repent (for real) and confess to make Christ their master in life. Every thing else has to be earned or sought out. Generally speaking, people that have paid a higher price will often have a higher level of respect for what they have. However the bottom line is that God knows the sincerity of your heart and your desire to really know him or whether you are just using him. Most of what a lot of Christians know about God comes from what they hear at church, from friend s, from stories they have heard and from songs about God. For a simple example, as I traveled the country doing meetings and other ministry things, I am always shocked to find how many Christians think that the animals went into the ark 2x2. That is what they have always heard. Read it for yourself sometime. Remember that in life even the smallest details can become vital. The world is focused on the physical details and mostly two areas; you're looks & your physical habits, the rest they figure they can train or teach to you. Hey, if you are clean cut and do not smoke and drink, you must be a good person, right? Jesus always, always failed miserably in these two categories. He was mostly unshaven, wore old clothes, drank alcohol, ate with dirty hands, did not hold a traditional 9 to 5 job, did not go to church and worship in the traditional manor and he did most of these things with sinners and people who were despised by the church people. The key is that he did it all for one reason and one reason only, to save souls from the pits of hell and eternal damnation.
Most Christians live life the same as the worldly people, their whole lives are spent with their main focus on self-improvement and self-betterment. The only betterment and improvement that God is interested in is your knowledge, wisdom and ability to do his work while you are here. His work is simple; Defeat the Spiritual powers of hell in order to get the lost children of God saved, despite of your own wants, needs and life! Nothing else that you do in life will matter on your judgment day except how you treated people! Not that you did the best you could for it to work out for them and you, rather that you did the best you could even if it means your life and the whole time you are believing God to make your way through it. If you live as the world lives as a part of it and you depend upon it and you do it by the letter of its knowledge, wisdom and ways; you are loosing the battle for your own soul and you are certainly not doing anything for God. Even if you go to church every week, give your money and so on. Hard facts but if you really read your bible, you know that is what it says. The bible says; You must live by faith, why have you concern about your own life, know you not that God is able to feed the birds how much more will he take care of you. You are to live in the world but not be a part of it and Paul said, "How dare you live by calendars, schedules and other elements of the world after knowing and tasting the awesome supernatural power of God, I am afraid of you!" Jesus said you are as soldiers that have come from a far land to a strange land, to fight a Spiritual war to save the lives of others. Would you make a comfortable permanent life and home there for yourself, become a part of that strange world and forget the mission that you are on? I would warn you that many people in the bible tried it, such as Lot!
Four quick points that God made: 1) My people perish (die Spiritually) because of the lack of knowledge. 2) Many are called; few chosen and very few make it in. 3) Before the end there will be a great falling away. 3) God speaking to a lot of Christians at judgment, depart from me you wicked servant I know you not. These are people that went to church, said they believe in God, used God's name, went on mission trips and so on. 4) Jesus said, "You will know the ones that are truly saved by the signs that follow them, they will bear fruit in my name (fruit = people in or on their way to heaven by your efforts) they will cast out devils, they will lay hands on the sick and the sick will be healed, they shall drink deadly poison and it shall not hurt them and they will even raise the dead." What he is getting at is very basic, people that are truly saved will do what God said they would do, and others are just part time want-a-bes!
God also said to study and show yourselves approved by God, ready to answer any person's questions at any time. God said why do you take even one thought for what you will eat, how you will pay the bills, how your problems will be solved, how you will be sheltered, you of little faith do you not know that the birds take no thought of any of those things, yet God feeds and shelters them, how much more will he take care of you? Does he mean his words or is it all just a joke? The time may come when nothing else can save you and it will be to late to decide if you believe what he said or not and you can't believe it if you don't know it!
You see Christians getting involved with all kinds of worldly goings on, which is they're big down fall and will ultimately be their demise. Read the parable of the sewer and the seed. You will see that the cares of this world will steal the things of God from you.
Generally speaking, people with grave sins have already learned that this world has absolutely nothing to do with any thing and has no answers for anything. Most Christians depend heavily on the world. They loose some business or their job or their car breaks or they have trouble with a neighbor and their whole world falls apart, O MY! Another thing that keeps a lot of Christians away from the power of God is their own lack of forgiveness and their unwillingness to step away from their old life ways of getting things done. They might change or get rid of some habits but they have the same old attitude and still depend on the same old ways.
I don't smoke, cuss, drink, lie or commit adultery! Yea but you also don't set your mind on the things of God as though your life depended on it either! Christians have to understand that we are here for one reason and only one reason, to be soldiers in a Spiritual war against what evil is doing to the lost. The war for souls, the Spiritual war of good vs. evil! If you think it's about more than that, you are blinded by this world.
The Bible says we are not here for fun and games, to carve out a life for ourselves. So let me ask, how much time each day do you spend truly seeking out the things of God, not the things that God will do for you, not reading or bible study, but seeking the things of God until you forget about being hungry or thirsty or tiered, until your flesh is so weak it is powerless. How bad do you want to be a part of his Eternal Kingdom? If you do seek him out, you will find that what he has for you is evil defeating and soul saving tools.
The only things that you will do, for all of your life here, which will count on that Great and Notable day when you stand before God, is the things that were a part of seeking out the lost and getting them saved! Every part of your life should be geared in some way toward the goal of getting lost souls saved. This does not mean getting them to stop smoking and or drinking and getting them in church on Sunday, those things have no significance what so ever. It means getting them saved so they will become part of the soul saving, stomping out evil army of God.
This might sound extreme to you and the new age life style of the modern world, but God is extremely serious about it. If you are living well and people that you know are having a hard time (even at their own fault) I feel for you because the day is coming! I know these things by my own life. I have traveled, with my family, all over seeking out the lost and doing God's work, often starting out with no money and we have always been well cared for by God. God's true soldiers are nomads, often contrary to the world's ways and nearly always misunderstood by Church or Religious people. In short God's people live by the Spirit not by the flesh!