The question is often asked: Can a person, once saved, ever lose their salvation? The short answer is: NO. The Bible clearly and unequivocally teaches that a person who was truly saved and converted can is eternally secure in that salvation and will never lose it. This is referred to as the Eternal Security of the Believer, Perseverance of the Saints or “Once saved always saved.”
We are going to discuss a lot of material here, so this will be a longish post. We will look at the key passages that support this doctrine; we will look at how Security of the Believer flows naturally from other things we know about Salvation; we will look at at some arguments made against the doctrine and finally we will look at why proper understanding of our security in Jesus Christ matters so much.
First, let’s look at some Scriptures which teach us about the Eternal Security of the Believer.
John 3:36 He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.
John 5:24 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.
John 10:27-30 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand. I and my Father are one.
Romans 8:35-39 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Hebrews 10:39 But we are not of them who draw back unto perdition; but of them that believe to the saving of the soul.
1 Peter 1:5 Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.
Simply tossing around Bible verses does not necessarily prove anything; out of the proper context, any verse can be used for most any proof. We always have to make sure we quote verses in the full context in which they appear. That would include the context of their chapter as well as the overall story of the Bible. They must be placed in the proper linguistic, historical and cultural context to be fully understood. Simply placing the above verses in the context of things we learn elsewhere in the Bible, it is clear that they teach that one’s salvation can never be lost.
If we look at the security of the believer in terms of why we needed to be saved in the first place, it simply makes no sense to propose we could lose our salvation once it is ours. Remember, we do not need to just be saved from our big sins, or our really heinous sins; we need salvation for all of them big or small. God is perfect and Holy, we are imperfect and sinful. Because God is perfect, any imperfection separates us from Him. We owe a penalty for our sin, big or small, which we can only pay by our death. Read the post on that subject here. If we could lose our salvation for some sin, then the question immediately comes up: for exactly WHAT sin or sins could we lose it? The obvious answer is easy to come up with. Any sin separated us from God in the first place. If we could lose our salvation for some sin, then likewise any sin would take it from us.
Remember Romans 6:23? “The wages of sin is death .” That statement is not graded on a curve. It is all inclusive for all sin. The payment is due from each of us. And it’s not paid on the installment plan. This penalty is either paid, or it’s not. If one has not accepted Jesus’ payment for it, then it is not paid. However, of one has accepted Jesus as Lord and Savior, then it is paid.
We also understand that our salvation is by Grace and not by works. We know that we do not make even the smallest contribution to the obtaining of our salvation. We discussed that quite fully in this post.
If our salvation is 100 percent obtained by grace, then it is also 100 percent maintained by grace. If no works of any sort help us attain salvation, then conversely and obviously, “bad” works, lack of works or substandard works could not possibly cost us that salvation, right? If we don’t work to get it, then why would we have to work to keep it? There are substantial numbers of people who would agree that initially, salvation is by grace but that we must then maintain it by our works.
If Salvation did have to be maintained by works, then the immediate question is: Exactly WHAT are the works requirements that must be met in order to keep it? It is the same problem as determining exactly what sin could cost us our salvation. There is simply no list of rules given anywhere is Scripture. Actually, there is a list and it is quite simple. Any sin separates us from God, and no works restore us. Anything else is just what we, humans, have added. We are going to dive into that topic later in this post.
The Apostle Paul addressed that very mindset in Galatians 3:3 “Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?” Paul informed us in that verse, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, that it is simply foolishness to think that we were saved by Grace but needed to maintain it by works.
Perhaps the biggest argument against the Doctrine of Eternal Security is that it somehow becomes “a license to sin.” In other words, one can become saved and then go out in the world and do whatever one chooses with no consequence. After all, one’s sins past, present and future are all forgiven. Technically, that is a true statement. Technically a truly saved person, no matter how far they might backslide, is still forgiven and heaven bound.
Sadly and to the discredit of churches today, we do much to foster this skepticism about the Doctrine of Eternal Security. We have pews full of people who only darken the doors of a church for an hour on Sunday morning, then barrel back to the outside world and conduct themselves just like, or worse than, the rest of the world. This same group of people justifies their behavior by resting on some claim that they are saved, so..”I’m all good, I’m saved and heaven bound. Jesus has forgiven me so it’s cool.” This is a classic case of the tail wagging the dog. Salvation is not about getting a ticket to heaven punched. God truly, deeply loves us and offers us the gift of salvation, but salvation is not about us! That’s Joel Osteen talk for sure. Read my post on just who worship is for and why we are saved here.
A quick summary is in order here. God was not sitting around in Heaven lonely one day and decided to create humanity to alleviate His loneliness. God is self existent and self sufficient and has no need for us whatsoever. God does not save us so that He can fill some empty void in His existence. We were only created for His honor and glory in the first place. In fact, the entire plan of redemption formed before the beginning of time was simply to declare God’s glory to the universe.
The point of this is God does not save us “for” us. He saves us for a purpose and a reason, and the reason is not us. The most notable Bible passage on salvation based on grace not works is of course Ephesians 2:8,9. Where people go wrong, however, is they stop there. Because right after God makes it clear through the Apostle Paul that works don’t save us, He goes on to tell they whys of our salvation.
Ephesians 2:8-10 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.
That’s just a start. There are numerous passages that teach us the a true saving faith will produce fruit(works). These are merely a few.
James 2:17 Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone.
Galatians 5:19-21 Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.
Galatians 5:22.23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.
2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
1 John 3:6-9 Whosoever abideth in him sinneth not: whosoever sinneth hath not seen him, neither known him. Little children, let no man deceive you: he that doeth righteousness is righteous, even as he is righteous. He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil.
The Apostle Paul answered the question about Eternal Security being a permit to sin very directly in Romans 6:15-23. This question is far from a new one.
Romans 6:15-23 What then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? God forbid. Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness? But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you. Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness. I speak after the manner of men because of the infirmity of your flesh: for as ye have yielded your members servants to uncleanness and to iniquity unto iniquity; even so now yield your members servants to righteousness unto holiness. For when ye were the servants of sin, ye were free from righteousness. What fruit had ye then in those things whereof ye are now ashamed? for the end of those things is death. But now being made free from sin, and become servants to God, ye have your fruit unto holiness, and the end everlasting life. For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Clearly, salvation is not a permit to sin at will. God said that in His Word. Also, clearly, God has expectations of us once we are saved.
Not only does The Bible teach that grace and security are not a permit to sin, but Christians should keep in mind that we all face a judgment one day. Understand clearly that a truly saved person will never face judgment for their sins; the issue of Heaven and Hell is decided only in this life. Believers will, however, be judged at some point in time for how they lived their lives for Jesus Christ while they were alive. The ultimate goal of every believer at the Judgment should be to hear the same words the good steward heard in the Parable of the Talents which Jesus told, “Well done, good and faithful servant.”
Let’s take a look at this judgement believers face. We learn in Romans 14:10-12 as Paul wrote to the Roman believers, that we will all stand at the Judgment Seat of Christ and account for how we lived our lives for him. Since we aren’t going to be judged for our sins what then is the purpose of this judgment? The judgment believers face is to determine our rewards we will receive for the things we have done for Jesus while living. One of the best descriptions of what will happen can be found in 1 Corinthians 3:10-17
What we receive are crowns for various services we have rendered on behalf of Jesus Christ during our lives. Descriptions of these can be found in several places in Scripture: 2 Timothy 2:5, 2 Timothy 4:8, James 1:12, 1 Peter 5:4, and Revelation 2:10.
Not only do saved believers face a judgment later for their works, but we also need to understand that we do not necessarily escaped unscathed in this life for the things we do wrong. We escape the eternal punishment for our sins due to our salvation, but not the earthly consequences for them. The things we do on this Earth affect our lives on this Earth.
God Himself may discipline us. Notice the difference between punishment and discipline. We are free from the eternal punishment for our sins: past, present and future. Like a good parent, however, God will chastise and discipline us in order to bring us back in line with His desire for our lives.
Hebrews 12:6-8 For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not? But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons.
God disciplines us as His children; if fact, if He does not discipline us then we are not actually His!
Sin has earthly consequences which are not necessarily handed out by God, but just the natural outflow of our actions. King David is one of the finest examples of actions and consequences we can find anywhere in the Bible. Only a very few people would even try to make a case for David being unsaved; there is almost universal agreement that as we speak, David is in Heaven with The Lord. Yet, we all also know the truly terrible sins David committed at one point in his life. We all know the story of his adultery with Bathsheeba and his murder of her husband Uriah. David certainly was forgiven by God for those sins, but if one reads the full story of his Kingdom it is easy to see that the consequences of what David did set the stage for many things.
- The rape of his daughter Tamar by her half brother Amnon and Amnons subsequent murder by Absalom. 2 Samuel 13
- Absalom’s banishment from the house of David and partial restoration. 2 Samuel 14
- Absalom’s later rebellion against David. 2 Samuel 15-19
Just a casual reading of this story and it is easy to draw the conclusion that David’s failure as both a father and husband led ultimately to some very serious consequences. One might even say that his other son Solomon behaved in some of the ways he did due to the example set by his father David.
To sum up the above, eternal security in our salvation is not a license to run out and sin all we want to. I heard a preacher say once, “Since I got saved I sin all I want to;” the audience grew silent and he then stated, “but I don’t want to.” Let’s recap quickly.
- True saving faith and salvation will produce works, or fruit
- We will all be judged for the quality of our works.
- God will discipline and chastise us for our actions
- We still face earthly consequences for the things we do
The whole idea that the Doctrine of Eternal Security is no more than a license to sin in probably the single biggest argument that is used to counter the doctrine. As we can see, the argument is simply not a valid one. Other than that, there are numerous Scripture verses used as “proof texts” to support the idea that we can lose our salvation. Several years ago, a family member had an interesting conversation with a person who believed one could lose their salvation. When challenged by the family member for some proof, the person in question quoted Job 1:21, saying “The Lord giveth and The Lord taketh away!” That may be the single most absurd argument for being able to lose salvation that has ever been spoken. Not all of these arguments are that absurd, however; some seem to make sense on the surface. Let’s look at a few. It will only be a few, as there are many.
Some scriptures that speak of earthly chastening are used to teach believers can lose their salvation.
1 Corinthians 11:29 For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord’s body.
Romans 13:2 Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation.
The word damnation in those verses is not referring to “anathema”, or death in Hell, but “krima”, referring to earthly judgment
There are those passages that refer to a believer being called home by God because of committing the sin unto death. This, in context, refers to physical and not spiritual death. 1 John 5:16 and 1 Corinthians 3:17 both refer to this. The fornicator in 1 Corinthians 5 was in danger of committing it and the believers in Corinth participating in the Lord’s Supper unworthily and Annanais and Sapphira all committed it. Nothing in context suggest these were unsaved people, but people being called home by physical death so as not to ruin their testimonies.
Some verses dealing with evidence or proof of salvation are used to illustrate a person losing their salvation.
1 Corinthians 15:2 By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain.
Colossians 1:22,23 In the body of his flesh through death, to present you holy and unblameable and unreproveable in his sight: If ye continue in the faith grounded and settled, and be not moved away from the hope of the gospel, which ye have heard, and which was preached to every creature which is under heaven; whereof I Paul am made a minister;
1 John 2:3-5 And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments. He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him.
James, in particular, is used to support this idea. But in the context of the overall concept of salvation not being by works, it is made clear that the above verses are referring only to the evidence of salvation.
Some verses used to show the possible loss of salvation simply refer to someone who never had it in the first place.
Matthew 7:21-23 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.
Some say that not those who say “Lord, Lord” enter heaven but only those who “doeth the will of my Father” enter heaven. In other words, works are needed to stay saved. Just note, however, what Jesus said. He said, “I never knew you.” To understand the full context of the above passage, it is necessary to read the entire passage in question. Read Matthew 7:15-23. The overall context in the passage is referring to false prophets and teachers who ran around claiming to belong to Jesus, but in fact never had.
The above passages are but a few that seem, on the surface, to support the idea that a person can lose their salvation. Like all of our Bible interpretation efforts, we have to perform this one correctly. Context, language, history and culture all have to be considered when assuming a position or interpretati0n. All of these things taken together, along with Scriptures supporting Eternal Security, clearly show that the Doctrine of Eternal Security of the Believer is, in fact, completely Biblical. Now, the only question remains is: Why is it so important?
The Doctrine of conditional salvation, or that one can lose their salvation, is a product of Satan himself. I am not saying that those who believe it are of Satan; I am saying the thought is from him. Why would I say such a thing? Allow me to briefly explain. First, let’s take a look at the following passage:
Ephesians 6:17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:
In that passage, Paul was speaking to saved believers. What he was passing along from God was that we are to put on our helmet, and that helmet is the helmet of Salvation. He simply meant that Satan desperately wants us to be in a constant state of doubting our salvation. Paul was teaching us not to be distracted by those doubts, but to live secure in the assurance of our status as reconciled children of God.
Why does Satan care? The basic reason is that if we rest assured that our salvation is secure, then we can move along to the work God really wants us to do. If we spend our entire lives in a mad scramble to stay saved, then that is all we can do. I hate to sound repetitive, but it’s not about us! It is about our works done to honor and glorify God and not our efforts either to get saved or to stay saved.
As with works based salvation, works maintained salvation becomes about men rather than God. God has laid out the conditions that must be met for salvation: repentance toward God and faith in His Son Jesus Christ. Any other rules are not God’s rules, they are man’s rules. Who makes any such list of rules and conditions necessary to maintain salvation? Some person, of course. When we follow rules set by man, we begin to abandon God’s guidelines as revealed in His Word. When we do that, we begin to follow men rather than God; worse, we begin to follow ourselves. And that is what got us into trouble in the first place way back in Genesis Chapter 3
Are you saved? If you are, rest assured that your salvation is secure for all eternity. Quit worrying about what you have to do to keep it, and get busy doing the works God has actually called you to do.
Are you lost? Understand that this security can belong to you as well. Admit you are a sinner. Agree with God that He is right and you are wrong. Turn from your sin. Believe that Jesus paid your due penalty on the cross, and accept Him as your Savior and Lord today. Then, pick up your cross and follow Him.
30 thoughts on “Jesus Paid it All and the Payment Was Permanent”
You wrote: “God was not sitting around in Heaven lonely one day and decided to create humanity to alleviate His loneliness. God is self existent and self sufficient and has no need for us whatsoever. God does not save us so that He can fill some empty void in His existence. We were only created for His honor and glory in the first place. In fact, the entire plan of redemption formed before the beginning of time was simply to declare God’s glory to the universe.”
God…perfect, omniscient, omnipotent, omnipresent, loving, just…Almighty. Right?
So, why did God create Satan?
Hey Luke, thanks for dropping by. You asked a good question. What is the answer? Well, I would love to just lay out an clear answer, but of course there isn’t really one is there? But I think in some ways the answer lies in the very part of the post you quoted.
“In fact, the entire plan of redemption formed before the beginning of time was simply to declare God’s glory to the universe.”
That is rather an uncomfortable thing for us to ponder, as the idea of doing something for our own glory seems counter to what we consider positive traits.
Did God create Lucifer perfect? Yes
Did Lucifer rebel and is now Satan? Yes
Did God give him and us free will? Yes
Even though we have free will, does God still know the future? Yes
Do I really understand how all that works. Nope. If I did, I would be God
Luke, I know that you seem to be somebody looking for answers, and I can do what my ability allows me to do. Just up front, I can’t answer everything. No one can.
All any of us can do is weigh the evidence and fact available to us and make the decision we see as best.
Anyway. Your question. Why did God create Satan? Other than what has been addressed, any other answer would just be me making things up.
Thanks for coming by!
If you want to hear my thoughts on your second, more thorough attempt at a response…read my perspective and, if you disagree, respond. Thanks
I’m sorry Luke, I hit enter before I was done. I do have a favor to ask. While I am happy to talk about any issue you want, I think understanding that really this was about a believers eternal security in Jesus Christ. In other words, this is meant to be a reassurance of one’s status as a saved child of God. So, while I am all for talking, I really prefer to try to stay focused on the topic at hand if possible.
Does that make sense?
Again, thanks for coming by.
It is in line. That is why I offered the question–in response to YOUR words in the post.
I was a non-believer. Then, I joined the faithful…became ordained as an elder…teaching…leading…and in the process of living a lengthy time as a follower of Jesus Christ I began to attempt to answer basic questions to DEFEND the faith…not attack it.
But, I found conflicts… contradictions. The question: Why did God create Satan? should not be so staggering to those of the faith? If so, why? Why be afraid of a question? If you don’t like answering it here–why not write a post on it. People are interested in that question…
It’s a basic question that is asked by non-believers…believers…and those in times of doubt. It fits perfectly in line with the thought processes in your post…again based on your own words.
Why wouldn’t a believer…a writer of a Christian blog…want to answer it?
“Thanks for coming by”?
Is that what Jesus would do, Wally?
Actually, when I said thanks for coming by, it meant exactly that. Thanks for coming by 🙂
I wasn’t dismissing you at all, but merely saying I appreciated the visit!
The simple truth is, many of your questions don’t have and answer that we can pin down precisely from the Words of Scripture, so my answer is just that…Heck if I know the answer to everything. I’m not afraid of the question, I just know that I can never come up with a satisfactory answer. Certainly not in my own words. All I can do is rely on God’s words, and He has opted not to reveal all to me as crystal clear. So, while I would love to have an answer, and to give you an answer, I cannot.
What would Jesus do? Well, he stayed on message for one thing. I don’t mind conversations at all Luke, but I also don’t really want to get embroiled in endless debates or arguments. Sometimes I write a post for a very specific reason, and it’s not unreasonable that I would guide conversations to at least sort of stay on topic, and in line with the goals I had for the post.
So..in answer to our question: Why did God create Satan knowing he would do what he would do? My post really addressed that and beyond that I simply don’t have an answer. It all revolves around His eternal plan to offer redemption and restoration for His creation. I could add many words and my opinions, but that is really it.
Now, kind of getting back to the content of the post. Luke, for all I know, you may very well be one of God’s children and a saved believer. I don’t know what is in your heart, nor would I presume to say. I know we don’t have all the answers, and I know that bothers many. Honestly, it does not bother me at all. There are many things in all of like for which I don’t have answers, and I am ok with those things. My faith is no different.
What I really saying her is: If you are His, He awaits you as the father awaited the prodigal son, to return where you will be welcomed with open arms. If you are not His, He still awaits you to adopt you as on of His own?
Is that better?
Thanks, Wally. I appreciate giving the time to respond. Have a great day, all the best, luke
My pleasure Luke! Come back anytime. Heck, this place is great. Most of the bloggers here are far nicer than me. Give them a holler!
Wally, thanks…I’ll check back.
But before I go, here’s the follow-up question to your response (and maybe some other readers may feel compelled to answer):
Why would a perfect God need “glory” if he had already glorified himself in a perfect creation?
“On the seventh day…God rested”
Why would perfect, just and loving God choose to break-what-he-perfectly-created and then choose the path to redemption of what he chose to break by condemning people God created in his own image, choosing to send them to hell in the process, when he had already created a perfect world?
Yes…I agree with you. That does not make sense. And, the answer is not “revealed” in the Bible.
And, you’re right, the ultimate, dead-end, non-answer…”I don’t know” on Why did God create Satan? is what I came up with after years of seeking the truth. Again, in that regard, I reached the same conclusion. But, is that what we are commanded to do–put our faith in a hidden God of obvious contradictions (using the very intellect and reasoning God created in us)? God is love–God creates hell. God does not tempt–but God creates Satan?
Read that last question…again. Tough one…sounds contradictory?
And, for the record, I am now a non-believer…and much more at peace as a “seeker” of truth instead of willfully ignoring the non-answers to questions like I offered to you. And, these are just a few of the questions…there’s many, many more.
Again, waging peace, thanks for your time, luke
Just a closing comment, and them much peace to you.
You said “Yes…I agree with you. That does not make sense. ”
Kind of a clarification? I would never say God doesn’t make sense. I said I don’t understand
Wally, my apologies, not trying to infer something false…it seemed like our thinking was congruent–but, I understand the nuance, again, my apologies. The follow-up question is a doozy isn’t it? I could not answer it… Why questions are tough 🙂 Again, thanks, Wally, have a great day…all the best, luke
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Reblogged this on Talmidimblogging.
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Thanks Brother Vincent!
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You’re very welcome Brother Wally!
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Once again, our thoughts and beliefs of the Word are not far apart.
1) “Perhaps the biggest argument against the Doctrine of Eternal Security is that it somehow becomes “a license to sin.”
We both know that there are some knuckle heads from every denomination who DO live their lives as if they have a license to sin. WRONG! We could make assumptions about their salvation in the first place but it’s better to let God be God.
2) “We are free from the eternal punishment for our sins: past, present and future.”
Absolutely! You kind of hit this a little, but sin is not what keeps us out of heaven. It is the rejection of Jesus. Jesus paid for our sins upon the cross. I believe it is 2 Cor 7:19 that says, “He who knew no sin became sin for us that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him.” Jesus took all the worlds sin upon Himself and paid with His blood. However, if we don’t reach out and grab hold of that free gift of grace, then we are doomed to hell…plain and simple.
3) If we could lose our salvation for some sin, then the question immediately comes up: for exactly WHAT sin or sins could we lose it?
Bingo! Your question further explains my explanation in #2. There is no sin that will cause a person to lose their salvation because they accepted the free gift.
4) Can anyone snatch the believer from the hands of Jesus?
You covered that very well. The answer is NO! John 10:27-28 are on my list of memory verses.
5) So the question remains… It is true that no one can do anything which would cause us to lose our salvation. This is addressed over and over by the Word which you brought out excellently. My questions, however, are the following:
Question: If a person has the freedom to accept God’s free gift of salvation, do they also have the freedom to return, of that same free will, His gift of salvation? In other words, COULD THEY DIVORCE GOD?
Answer: I DON’T KNOW! But, I do know, from the Word of God, that He deals with a persons heart and not their head. We all do and say stupid things in the heat of the moment. So, thank you Lord, for not holding some of my stupidity against me.
Question: BUT, can a person who fellow-shipped with God get to such a point where their heart becomes SO HARDENED that they return that gift?
Answer: I DON”T KNOW…and neither does anyone else, otherwise this issue would have been settled by now.
I will say this, I think the way you presented this material is spot on. You did not belittle anyone and you kept the information focused on the question as to whether someone could lose their salvation by sin or by some outside force pulling them away from God.
As for my questions, they are really irrelevant because if anyone were to ask me that about themselves, I would seriously question whether they ever had a relationship with God in the first place.
Patrick thank you so much for taking the time to pen that comment, I especially like your repetitive use of the phrase, “I don’t know.”
This issue is vastly important, and clearly understanding it is vastly important in how we live our Christian lives. Do we live as if we can just do whatever we want? Well, no! Do we live as if every day has to be a struggle to keep our relationship with Jesus? Well, no!
The answer is what the Bible teaches. And beyond that, as you stated, are many things we simply don’t know.
I really think doubting the security of believers is a seed planted by Satan so what we will look to men to secure and protect us with their rules, rather than to the one who has, Jesus.
Now that I have read comments from Luke above, I again wonder…”Can someone freely give back their salvation? Luke stated he was a believer and is now a non-believer. I could make all kinds of guesses to his sincerity, but that would not prove anything.
Luke, if you are reading this, my intent is not to draw you into an argument. It just so happens you commented while I was asking the question…”Can a person who has once accepted Jesus as Lord become so hardened in heart towards God that they reject the salvation that they once accepted?”
I hope Luke will respond, and I hope it can stay non contentious. I mentioned that to Luke myself, that if he was truly a saved child of God, he remains so, and just needs to come back in fellowship.
I don’t absolutely know the answer to that question, but I lean towards a truly saved person not even being able to walk away of their own accord. As you pointed out, what If person was just having a bad day?
I have suffered some doubts a time or two, and actually said some harsh things both about God and some of His children. If He would have taken me at my word, in those moments, I would have been in quite the pickle, because in my mind at that moment I was rejecting it.
I don’t disagree at all. As Don wrote, I don’t plan of giving up my salvation anyways, so it is a moot point to me.
As for what you wrote about losing one’s salvation through sin or by being yanked from the hands of Jesus, that question comes up all the time and needs to be addressed. For that, you did an excellent job.
You and I are much alike in the fact that we admit that we don’t have all the answers. I follow some who are so convinced that they have all the correct answers. The problem, however, is that they don’t know all the right questions.
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Well..we don’t have all the answers do we Patrick? I’m ok with fessing up to that LOL. Hard for me to do, but Jesus makes me more ok with it every single day. The more I read of His Word, the more convinced of my own cluelessness I become!
I do, however, get somewhat bothered when an admittance that I just don’t know becomes classified as hand waving or dismissing the question. No..it just means I don’t know.
I can make an analogy to my work life here. A large part of my work involves repairing broken satellite. A routine part of fixing it is just going through a system top to bottom and correcting all things which are not right. Sometimes people are adamant that they want to know what was wrong. Well, sometimes….I don’t know! I can say with certainty is is completely right now, but can’t say what was wrong then for sure. I tell them if I pinned it on on thing, I would just be making something up to make them happy, but they can rest assured it is 100 percent A Okay at this moment.
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“The problem, however, is that they don’t know all the right questions.” I had to tell you I love this especially!! God bless!
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To paraphrase King Agrippa, “In a short time would you persuade me to be a Calvinist?” Fortunately, the doctrine of eternal security shouldn’t divide the body. Let each decide for himself what grieving the Holy Spirit means. As for me, I know in whom I have placed my security and have no intention of exercising my free will to change that decision.
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Hey Don, welcome to Church Set Free! Thank you for a reasonable response to this posting. This issue can be contentious, and reasonableness is in short supply and appreciated.
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“As for me, I know in whom I have placed my security and have no intention of exercising my free will to change that decision.” Well said.
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Hey Brother Patrick, just wanted to say, love your comments and look forward to hearing more from you. Will try and get over to your Blog as health permits. Today, it’s 2:54 my time, I’m feeling pretty good though couldn’t sleep. But am always looking for fellowship with fellow Christian Bloggers!!
God bless as you continue to encourage and edify one another!!!
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Hey Brother Roland, nothing but an agreement here. I love Patrick’s visits. His comments are always enlightening and make me think about what I myself have written.
Hey Brother Wally!! Trying to catch up on some reading as tonight don’t feel too bad and am getting blessed by the posts and the comments. In one of the upcoming segments of “The Living Word” I hope to give an answer as to why God created Lucifer who became Satan. The fact we need to remember is that in the Written Word of God, all that we NEED to know to have a relationship with God as our Heavenly Father is there. I could go into a brief explanation here but it wouldn’t be sufficient.
To comment upon some things Brother Patrick said about our decisions to serve Christ and to place our security in Him, I wholeheartedly agree. But — and I know that’s a nasty word, but — there WILL be an end time apostasy and apostasy is the willing turning away from the truth. Not what some believe to be the truth, but the actual truth. That means, for whatever reason some will say, I know the truth of God and His plan for me, but I reject it. Now, I also agree that I cannot JUDGE (sentence) and that only Christ Jesus will have the final say as depicted in Matthew 7:21-23. But we CAN judge (discern or appraise) by ones actions whether they be a false prophet, wolf in sheep’s clothing etc., and that is to protect the Body of Christ as a whole.
I do know this also, that our Heavenly Father, the God of all Created will never, ever stop loving and this is where so many Christians build a box around their beliefs. There will be many for instance who reject the plan of redemption and yet our God will STILL love them. How and why? Because He IS love for one, for another, because He created us to be loved. It will be personal choice to reject His love, to reject His plan etc. and for whatever outcome, for wherever they spend eternity, not being able to see, sense, feel or know His Presence, He will still love them. He CAN’T do otherwise for it is WHO HE IS. I will cover more hopefully Feb. 10 on Church Set Free.
We mustn’t confuse God’s love with His just-ness for it is a part of His love for mankind. He will not infringe upon mankind’s ability to choose even if it means mankind’s own eternal darkness. It wouldn’t be love if He did infringe so in a very real circumstance, we ARE the masters of our own destiny. Think on this though concerning Lucifer’s role; without the knowledge of wrong how could mankind make a choice for right? ‘Nuff said for now!
Brother Wally, as time permits I will get back with you either on Facebook or maybe in an email. Love you Brother! Thanks for your in-depth teaching!! Until later, God bless!
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Hey Brother Roland. First and foremost, what a nice thing to see you well enough to read and comment. That is a huge blessing. Your comments always give me far more to think about than I can possible write about in return. In most cases, my additions to your well thought out comments would be a waste of time.
As I have heard said, sometimes the comments are worth more than the post. But, that is actually a good thing!
Can, as saved and secured people, still choose to reject? I get some say yes, some say no. I do know, as some have pointed out, I certainly have no plans to! It’s quite complicated, isn’t it? And debating that point is both useless and beyond my theological pay grade LOL.
On the other hand, there have been those who have come around saying we can sin bad enough to be separated from our Lord, and those I will gladly debate with.
I think you and I are thinking alike on the Justice Post by the way 🙂
More than anything, I pray for your return to full health, as we miss you around here.
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As to an unforgivable sin, the Bible speaks about Blasphemy of the Holy Spirit. I did an article years ago, but even now I can’t say that I, who have been involved in Charismatic and Full Gospel churches can still say what that is. I can honestly say this, I am so glad that I am NOT the judge!!! AND – I thank Him that He IS such a loving Savior!!! God bless you Brother and thanks for all your prayers!!
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Hi Brother Roland. One of my memorization verses is Psalm 89:14 – Justice and judgment are the habitation of thy throne; mercy and truth shall go before thy face.
God is as much a God of justice and judgment as He is mercy and truth. I have no doubt we have entered into the period of apostasy.
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