Have you ever been troubled by questions like these: Can you lose your salvation? Can you be “unsaved” if you do something wrong or if you sin?
It’s extremely important for us believers to be clear about several fundamental matters. One of these is having the assurance that we’re saved once we believe in Christ. Another fundamental matter we must be clear about is the security of our salvation. Just how secure is our salvation? What safeguards it? Does its security depend on us? Can we lose our salvation?
Let’s get into five points that address the security of our salvation.
1. God initiated our salvation, and His calling us is irreversible
Not one of us initiated our salvation. Ephesians 1:4-5 shows us that God initiated our salvation before we knew anything about salvation, before we were even born:
“Even as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world to be holy and without blemish before Him in love, predestinating us unto sonship through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will.”
Our salvation didn’t start with us; it started with God. And Romans 11:29 gives us this reassuring word:
“For the gracious gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.”
Irrevocable! This means our God-initiated salvation is irreversible, permanent, final, and unalterable.
2. God’s love and grace are eternal
We may withhold our love from others if they don’t love us in return, or we may have certain conditions we want others to meet to gain our love. But not God. He loved us even when we were His enemies, dead in offenses and sins. First John 4:10 tells us,
“Herein is love, not that we have loved God but that He loved us and sent His Son as a propitiation for our sins.”
This is how great God’s love is for us. In fact, God’s love for us is eternal. In Jeremiah 31:3 God says, “Indeed I have loved you with an eternal love.” And God’s grace to us is also eternal. Second Timothy 1:9 says,
“Who [God] has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works but according to His own purpose and grace, which was given to us in Christ Jesus before the times of the ages.”
God gave His grace to us before the times of the ages, that is, in eternity past. Both His love and His grace to us are eternal. Just as we can’t lose God’s love or grace, we can’t lose our salvation. God’s love for us, God’s grace to us, and God’s salvation of us are all eternal.
3. God is righteous in regard to our salvation
God’s salvation surely arises from His love for us. But it is also a matter of His righteousness. Our sins violate God’s righteousness, and we should pay the penalty for them.
But Christ fulfilled that demand of God’s righteousness by paying the penalty for us. He died in our place for our sins, bearing them in His body on the cross. Because Christ paid our debt on the cross, God must righteously acknowledge that our debt was paid; He can no longer demand that we pay it.
As an illustration, let’s say we violate a traffic law and a police officer gives us a ticket. But we have a problem—we can’t pay the fine. However, someone pays the fine for us. Since that person paid the fine, a judge can’t require us to pay it again. The judge has to acknowledge that the fine was paid.
The righteous God can never take away our salvation because our debt was fully paid, once and for all, by Christ’s death for us. We were forever redeemed by His precious blood.
4. God begot us with His eternal life
“As many as received Him [the Lord Jesus], to them He [God] gave the authority to become children of God, to those who believe into His name, who were begotten not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.”
Once we’re born of God as His children and receive His eternal life, we can never be “unborn,” even if we do things that aren’t pleasing to God. The life we received from God is eternal, and our life relationship with God is also eternal.
To illustrate, let’s say our child’s behavior isn’t pleasing to us. While this makes us unhappy, it can’t cancel or undo the fact that our child shares our human life. His bad behavior can’t annul the fact that he is our child, begotten with our human life.
We are the children of God, born with His eternal life, and nothing can undo that.
5. God holds us in His hands
John 10:28-29 tells us we’re held in the strongest hands in the universe:
“I give to them eternal life, and they shall by no means perish forever, and no one shall snatch them out of My hand. My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all, and no one can snatch them out of My Father’s hand.”
No one, not even Satan, can snatch us away from these hands! Our salvation cannot be more secure.
Being absolutely clear about our salvation being eternally secure
The verses in the points above show us definitely that our salvation is eternally secure, safeguarded by God Himself. We must be absolutely clear about this. Reading and understanding the verses related to each point will help us to be clear that we can never lose our salvation.
But what if we sin?
We should never think that because our salvation is eternally secure, that fact gives us a license to sin. Although we can never lose our salvation, we shouldn’t be careless about sin. When we sin, we do suffer the consequences. We don’t lose our salvation, but we do lose our joy because sin interrupts our fellowship with the Lord. And when our fellowship with the Lord is interrupted, we’re automatically on a downward slope.
So what should we do when we sin? When the Lord makes us aware of any sin through the speaking of our conscience, we should confess it to Him so we can be forgiven and cleansed from that sin. We shouldn’t let unconfessed sins remain on our conscience; we should keep short accounts with the Lord. Daily we should be in the habit of confessing our sins in order to maintain our fellowship with the Lord and our enjoyment of Him, but never forgetting that our salvation is eternally secure.
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