Come Now and Let Us
Reason Together
About:

Whether
Or Not a
Person
Can Lose
Their
Salvation

"Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins
be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like
crimson, they shall be as wool."
  Isaiah 1:18

This is God's open invitation to anyone seeking a Bible answer to
questions concerning salvation.   In the following conversation we see
someone partaking of God's offer after having heard a Bible preacher's
sermon . . .

Preacher, I have a question.   During your sermon you seemed to imply that a person cannot lose their
salvation.

That is right.   The Bible teaches that we are saved by faith in Christ and once saved we can't lose it.
But you make it sound as if a person will remain saved no matter what his behavior is.
Well, let's assume it depended on behavior.   How would a person lose their salvation?
By not staying faithful to God.
You mean by disobedience?
Well, yes, you can't go on practicing disobedience and sin and expect to stay saved.
But tell me, how many acts of sin and disobedience does it take to lose it?
That's not a fair question.   The Bible doesn't give a specific number of sins.
Okay, suppose a person breaks all of God's commandments at once, would that results in losing it?
Yes, I would imagine so.
How about one, would breaking one commandment do it?
No!   I'd like to think God is more patient than that.
Yet the Bible says:

"For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all."
James 2:10

The law is one complete unit.   If you disobey one commandment it's like breaking them all.
But that would make it impossible to hang on to your salvation!
That's right.   That's why we need a Saviour.   No one can earn or maintain their salvation on their own.
I'm afraid that if it depended on you to hang on to your salvation you would lose it in a minute!   All it
would take is one sin.

Look, you're trying to confuse me but it won't work!
I'm sorry you feel that way, but I'm only trying to reason with you.   As you can see, salvation can't be
earned.   That's why God offers it as a gift.

"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."
  Ephesians 2:8,9

No one who gets to Heaven will boast as to how he stayed faithful and hung on to his salvation.   To say
that you can lose it is to teach salvation by works.   But it's by grace, the gift of God.

But can't God take that gift away if you don't stay faithful?

My dear friend, God will not take the gift of salvation away:

"For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance."   Romans 11:29

He will not change His mind nor will He ever forsake us once we are saved.   God says:

"...I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee."   Hebrews 13:5

When God says never He means never!   We should not assume there is a condition to His promise when
no condition is given.

But what about the people described in Matthew 7:22- 23?   Surely these people lost their salvation!
But were they truly saved in the first place?   Notice Verse 23:

"And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity."
Matthew 7:23

Christ says that He never knew them.   They were never saved in the first place.   They had made a false
profession.   They were never His sheep.   Jesus says:

"My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:" John 10:27.

And notice what He gives to those who are known by Him:

"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
."
  John 10:28- 29

He gives them eternal life, not a temporary life which depends upon faithfulness.   That would mean
salvation by works since it depends on you.
  He says that they shall never perish.   You see, it's not a question
of you holding on to Christ.   He holds on to you.   He knows how to keep His sheep.   He is the Good
Shepherd not a hireling.   (John 10:11-13).

"And this is the Father's will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose
nothing
, but should raise it up again at the last day."
  John 6:39

But what happens if I willfully sin against God?
He will treat you as a son:

"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?"
Hebrews 12:6-7

When you willfully sin He disciplines you.   He does not disinherit you from being His son.   If a person
could lose their salvation there would be no need for chastening.   You would simply stop being His son.

What you are saying is beginning to make sense, but why am I having such a hard time accepting it?
Because, my friend, you are still viewing salvation as something you must earn, as something that depends
on you.   But realize that Christ did it all, He earned it for us with His blood.   Salvation is now offered as
a free gift to us.   It's not a free gift if you have to work at hanging on to it.   Read Romans 3:23-38 and
notice the key words used in this passage.

1)   Justified Freely - this means to be made right when justice is satisfied.
To say that you can lose it is to say: Christ never fully justified us and it's still up to us to justify ourselves
and finish what He started.
2)   By His Grace - this means getting what we don't deserve; unmerited favor.
To say that you can lose it is to say: we must stay faithful in order to merit salvation.
3)   Through the Redemption that is in Christ Jesus - this means Christ has bought us back with a
       price - His blood.   We have been delivered from our sin debt.   (I Corinthians 7:22-24; II Timothy

       2:5; Colossians 2:13-14)
To say that you can lose it is to say: Christ has not paid the full price needed to buy us back to God
and we must help Him pay for it through our faithfulness (works).
4)   Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation - propitiation means a settlement.   Christ
       has settled it between us and God by His sacrifice.   His death has appeased God.
To say that you can lose it is to say: it has not been fully settled with God and we must help
settle it with our faithfulness (works).
5)   Remission of sins - this means forgiveness of sins.
To say that you can lose it is to say: God has not fully forgiven us on behalf of Christ.   But the Bible
says:

"But this man [Christ], after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right
hand of God;"
Hebrews 10:12.

Therefore, God says:

"And their sins and iniquities will I remember no more."   Hebrews 10:17

Friend, the bottom line is if you had the ability to hang on to your salvation, you could have
earned it in the first place.   You would not need a Saviour.   But the Bible says:

"For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his
own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh:"

Romans 8:3.

"I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is
dead in vain."
  Galatians 2:21

Let me show you some more Bible passages that reinforce the fact that you cannot lose your
salvation.   Jesus says:

"But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst;" John 4:14.

The gift of God is living water (John 4:10) that fully satisfies one's thirst.   To say that you can
lose your salvation is to say that a person can become thirsty again.   But once Jesus fills that
empty spiritual void in a person's heart, he is fully satisfied and at peace with God never to thirst
again.

But what if someone does thirst again?
Then he never had the true living water in the first place.   Next, in his salutation, Jude refers to
the saved as:

"...to them that are sanctified by God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ, and
called:"

Jude 1:1.

The word preserved here means to guard from loss or injury, to prevent escaping, to maintain,
to keep.   In Peter's salutation he refers to the saved as being begotten by God (I Peter 1:3):

"To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in
heaven for you, Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to
be revealed in the last time."
  I Peter 1:4-5

Nothing can take our inheritance from God once He has given it.   We are kept by His power.
But what if I set out to willfully disinherit myself?
You can't.   Once saved you couldn't go to Hell even if you wanted to!

I'm beginning to question whether or not I'm
really saved.   I mean, I must admit that I've never
been fully at peace, always wondering if I had
lost it or not.

God never intended us to wonder.   That's why
salvation depends on Him not you so simply
admit your a lost hellbound sinner.   Repent, turn
away from sin, turn toward God and put your
faith and trust in the fact that Christ has paid it
all.   Christ said it is finished (John 19:30).   Stop
trusting in your ability to hang on to it.   You're
only practicing salvation by works.

For more information please contact:

FARGO BAPTIST
CHURCH

3303 23rd Avenue SouthWest
Fargo, North Dakota 58103
(701) 232-5500

Pastor T. C. Scheving

[Christian Helps Ministry (USA)] [Christian Home Bible Course]