Monday, September 10, 2018

Grace Q & A: Can a Christian lose their Salvation?

17 For the law was given through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. John 1:17 NKJV

For this reason we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away from it. Hebrews 2:1 NASB

We've been in an extended study getting back to the basics of the Good News Gospel of Grace. Using a Q & A format we've asked and answered many pertinent questions about Grace and even addressed concerns some may have about the message of the Radical Grace of God.

 So far we've seen that under Grace, there is no condemnation in Christ. We've seen what Grace is, we've also addressed the concern about too much Grace? Is there something as too much Grace

 Today, it seemed good to conclude this study by answering the question often asked in relation to God's Amazing Grace. Can a Christian lose their salvation? Can a believer forfeit or leave, or "give back" the gift of salvation?

  What is the root of such questions? What drives believers to ask such a question? Is it walking by Faith or walking by sight, or walking according to outward evidence, to surmise that a person once born again can somehow undo what only Grace and the Finished Work could accomplish?

 Where did man somehow draw the conclusion that a believer can lose his salvation? We have zero accounts of anyone in New Testament Scripture where they were born again and then lost that salvation or came to the point of "walking away" from their faith. I mean if something that has such eternal consequence as loss of redemption, shouldn't there be at least one person we can point to that experienced this?

 What is at heart is a concept rooted in many believers thinking. This concept suggests that somehow man, in all his finiteness can somehow undo the eternal work of the Infinite Lord God Almighty.  In other words, if there is a way to foul it up man can find a way so therefore God just allows fallible man to foul it up and has made no fail proofs in His plan of redemption.

Can we lose our Salvation? Can we leave it?

 Here is the Good News Gospel of Grace answer. No! Your salvation is an eternal work of God, not a temporal work rooted in the fallibility of man and his performance. Think of it, what work caused you to be saved? What good deeds did you do enough of to qualify you for Heaven? No amount of good deeds or random acts of kindness done caused you to have an entryway into the Kingdom of God. No righteous act performed caused you to be saved, so what unrighteous act could cause you to be unsaved?

 Where the disconnect begins is the fallacy that man, when they receive Jesus, are somehow in Covenant, personally, with Father God. So if they aren't faithful to uphold their end then certainly, it seems justified that the person would then be removed from the Covenant. Many Christians in some form or fashion hold to this belief.

  The problem with this concept is the truth that God and man are not in Covenant together. God already tried Covenant with man. That was the fault of the Old Covenant. Man couldn't keep the standards of a Holy, Righteous God. The Law was good and perfect but couldn't make man perfect or holy. 

 Under this New Covenant, God is in Covenant with Himself. God is in Covenant with God and He is infallible. So we are not even factored into the equation. Whenever you hear a teaching or concept that suggest that man in his strength or power, or actions can somehow undo the work of redemption, the Finished Work of Christ, know that is an error. It is wrong because it presumes that man is factored into the equation.  The only part man plays in this Covenant is to believe, and God even gives us His Faith as a gift. 

Irrevocable Love

 Lose our salvation? Salvation is a gift. An eternal gift. Salvation is not an eternal reward for faithfulness or good works or kind deeds. You cannot earn a gift. If salvation is rewarded because of good works or performance it ceases to be a gift. If salvation is received by belief, but then perfected by good works and kept by our ability to remain sinless and faithful, then salvation is a wage earned, a payment for services rendered. 

 29 For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable. Romans 11:29 NKJV

 This is the Word I want to encourage you with. Irrevocable. God's gifts are irrevocable. Salvation is a gift from God. This gift is irrevocable. God doesn't renege or change His mind about His promises. Yes, you may say but surely our actions or unbelief has a part to play in keeping our salvation, right? See this passage in another translation.

29 God’s gifts and God’s call, you see, cannot be undone. Romans 11:29 NTE

 This is the Good News of Grace! We are eternally secure. Our salvation is begun by Grace and kept by Grace. God is our Father, not our Heavenly employer. 

 Jesus gives us His clear view of our eternal security;
27 My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; 28 and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand.29 My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. 30 I and the Father are one.” John 10:27-30 NASB

 Hear what the Apostle Peter says about our eternal security;
 And God has reserved for his children the priceless gift of eternal life; it is kept in heaven for you, pure and undefiled, beyond the reach of change and decay. And God, in his mighty power, will make sure that you get there safely to receive it because you are trusting him. It will be yours in that coming last day for all to see. 1 Peter 1:4-5 TLB

 In summation, can we lose our leave our salvation? Absolutely not! We are eternally secure in the perfect hand of God, resting safely in His perfect once for all redemption. Fear-based theology, reactionary theology, that is reacting to the missteps and failures of our brothers and sisters in Christ by formulating a concept of loss of salvation has no place in the life of Faith. 

 We are saved by Grace through Faith. We are kept by His Grace and not our goodness or faithfulness. We walk by Faith, believing what He said about us is true. We don't walk looking at our circumstance or others to determine the truth. Jesus and His Word are the only truth we look to. Receive this irrevocable love and rest in His Grace. Once you've received Jesus you are eternally secure, no matter what. 
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