There is a lot of talk within Christian circles about whether or not a believer can lose their salvation or if it’s something that is permanent. One side says you can lose your salvation if you fall back or sin while the other side says that once you accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and savior, sincerely, then it’s a once and for all situation. Both sides offer their opinion as to why they believe what they do.
The important part of this discussion is to look at context of the scripture. The Bible is God’s word and it is inspired by God Himself. We are told that every scripture is God breathed (3 Timothy 3:16) so we can accept the accuracy of what the book holds. As Christians, we take God’s word literally because it was inspired by God and since target is our target, seeing how He accepted the Bible as literal and so did the disciples, we should as well.
There are different places within scripture for us to look and examine about such an important topic and it is important. The first place I want to begin is in John 10, verses 28-30. Here, we find Christ claiming not just being the Messiah but His actual role as the deity: “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.”
We learn different things here including that God’s grace and mercy are significant as they cover a multitude of sins but also, that God’s forgiveness through His sacrifice as Christ is sufficient enough to cover all of our sins—not just a few or this one and that one—but all of them whether it’s our past sins, our current sins, or our future sins. Most important of all is that we learn that a person cannot lose their salvation because of anything that we do as there is nothing that God cannot forgive and there are multiple scriptures which we can point to see this in place which is significant for each of us as we are all sinners and we all fall short of God’s glory.
Maybe you’re asking how do I know we fall of God’s glory? Simple: scripture tells us so. Romans 3:23 reads “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;” We see here that because we live in our sin nature that began with Adam and Eve and their part in the forbidden fruit, we fall short of God’s glory. We know that Christ lived a sinless, perfect life and, again, since Christ is our target then we know we fall short of His glory but thanks to the grace of God and His forgiveness, we do have an opportunity at eternal life. No, this does not mean that everyone receives it but rather, that everyone has the opportunity to do so and while it’s hard to believe that anyone would turn down such a gift, unfortunately, many do.
Throughout scripture, we read of God’s eternal and everlasting love and perhaps there is no better place than Romans 8:38-39, reading: “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.”
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.”–Romans 8:28-29
It’s important to note that once we are sincerely saved, not a show of emotions and a few good words spoke but sincerely saved through the faith of Christ, then nothing can separate us from our Savior. No creature or being can do so and guess what, not even ourselves. This is hard for many people to accept and while it is hard for them, if they will only read within context, they will see that God’s forgiveness and His love is what allows for the eternal salvation of man and once we say yes to Him, we have it.
When we look at scripture, we should not only read the scripture but again, read it within context and compare it with other parts of scripture. The Bible teaches us that no person is righteous, not one and Romans 3:10-12 explains this well: “As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.”
As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.”–Romans 3:10-12
This is true for anyone and everyone whether we call ourselves Christian or not. Even if we are a sold-out, born again Christian, we are going to sin and thinking that we can live a perfect, sinless life is arrogant and not accurate. None of us can so logically speaking, we must ask ourselves, then, if we lose our salvation because of sin then how much sin is too much? There is nothing in scripture that tells us as we are told to forgive others constantly, seventy times seven times (Mathew 18:22). That’s a big number that Christ throws out to us and the number is not as important as the message behind it: forgive, forgive, forgive regardless of how many times we have been wronged.
Scripturally speaking, we can see that once a person honestly accept Christ as their lord and Savior, we are saved and always saved. This doctrine is known as eternal security and we can see Christ and His followers teaching it time and time again. When we look at scripture closely, we can see that it lines up with other parts of the Good Book. Scripture does not contradict itself despite the tricks of others so we can take the word of God at its word for what it says. Do I honestly think this will end the debate between those who believe in the different ideologies and doctrines? No. If someone believes you can lose your salvation then they will defend it until the end and so will someone who believes in eternal security but I have gone through it using scripture and then, using logic and both ways show that a person that honestly and sincerely accepts our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, even if they backslide or commit sins, is always saved and has that safety net waiting for them.
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.”—Ephesians 2:8-9