Commentary By: Gordon King
Many believers think that once they are saved they can lose their salvation, that it all depends upon how they live their lives that keeps them saved. Many others believe that once you are born-again you will always be saved. What do you believe?
If we can lose our salvation by not performing up to God’s standards then how could we have been saved in the first place if our standards were so low? If we as sinners could not conform to God’s standard of perfection in order to be saved, then just how could we maintain our salvation if God’s standards require perfection?! That’s what it’s really all about if we believe that we can lose our salvation. We must perform good works perfectly in order to maintain salvation, anything else would not conform to God’s perfect will. We are not saved by our works, nor do we maintain our salvation by our works!
“For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.“
‘But now we have been delivered from the law, having died to what we were held by, so that we should serve in the newness of the Spirit and not in the oldness of the letter. 7 What shall we say then? Is the law sin? Certainly not! On the contrary, I would not have known sin except through the law. For I would not have known covetousness unless the law had said, “You shall not covet.” ‘
God did not save any of us because of our works, because God commands perfection in the law. We are only condemned by the law if we try to be saved by the law!
“There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit. 2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death.“
The law was given so that we would know sin, that it would teach us the sin in our lives. It is impossible to keep all of God’s commandments perfectly, no one has done it, no one can do it!
“For the law, having a shadow of the good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with these same sacrifices, which they offer continually year by year, make those who approach perfect.“
“Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God. 20 Therefore by the deeds of the law no flesh will be justified in His sight, for by the law is the knowledge of sin.“
Therefore there must be another way to save us, there must be another means by which a person can be saved and given eternal life, or none of us would ever obtain it.
God gave Himself as a sacrifice for our sins, meaning that He paid the price for our sins that we ourselves should have paid! Someone had to pay the price, for the penalty of sin is death.
“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.“
God Himself chose to die on the cross, taking upon Himself the sins of the world, each and every sin ever committed or that will ever be committed. It is only God who could have done this, for He requires perfection, the perfect sacrifice, and since God is the only one who is perfect He is the only one who could have been the sacrifice, the sacrificial Lamb! He paid our sin debt and gave to us eternal life, what a bargain! Instead of eternal death that we deserve, He takes our sins upon Himself and gives us what we don’t deserve, eternal life!
“The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!“
“But this Man, after He had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down at the right hand of God, 13 from that time waiting till His enemies are made His footstool. 14 For by one offering He has perfected forever those who are being sanctified.“
Our salvation only depends upon us believing and accepting Jesus Christ and what He has done for us on the cross, nothing more, nothing less! The same goes for us remaining saved, it only depends upon what Jesus did for us, nothing more, nothing less! If not then we are telling God that He was not good enough to save us or keep us saved, that His perfect sacrifice was not perfect! Are you going to be the one to tell God that?! I’m certainly not!!! I believe Him, I trust Him, and I trust in the sacrificial power of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ on the cross!
‘Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” ‘
“Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”
‘Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” ‘
To be saved by Jesus Christ means to be born-again, made a new creation, an eternal creation in Christ!
2 Corinthians 5:17
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.“
Once born-again we are a new creation in Christ, we have died to the old self, old things have passed away, we have become an eternal spirit with Christ forever, not until we sin again but forever, everlasting!
In order to believe and accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior we must first repent of our sins, for if we do not then we cannot truly accept Him.
2 Corinthians 7:10
“For godly sorrow produces repentance leading to salvation, not to be regretted; but the sorrow of the world produces death.“
2 Peter 3:9
“The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.“
This is not a work, but a change of heart, and without this change of heart we cannot truly know God! Repentance means first acknowledging that we have sinned, recognizing that it is wrong, and having a change of heart and mind about our sins. It means confessing our sins to God, telling Him that we don’t want to do them anymore, all from a humble heart with honest intentions. When we do this then we can come to God and accept Him and His gift of salvation, if we do not then we don’t really want to accept Him or His gift, it means that we don’t really want to be saved, that we don’t want to make Him the Lord of our life! If we don’t first repent of our sins then we have not truly accepted Christ as our Lord and Savior, we have not been born-again! Just how many people who call themselves Christians have done this? How many have believed in God for salvation but did not first repent of their sins? How many are deceiving themselves into believing that they are saved when they really aren’t? I don’t know the answer to that question, but God does!
When we are saved then we are Justified through faith in Jesus Christ, meaning that we are found righteous in the eyes of God!
“But now the righteousness of God apart from the law is revealed, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets, 22 even the righteousness of God, through faith in Jesus Christ, to all and on all who believe. For there is no difference; 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, 25 whom God set forth as a propitiation by His blood, through faith, to demonstrate His righteousness, because in His forbearance God had passed over the sins that were previously committed, 26 to demonstrate at the present time His righteousness, that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.“
“knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law but by faith in Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, that we might be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the law; for by the works of the law no flesh shall be justified.“
‘But that no one is justified by the law in the sight of God is evident, for “the just shall live by faith.” ‘
It is by having faith in Jesus Christ that we are found worthy to be saved, this is Justification. Without faith it is impossible to please God, without faith we cannot be saved! The process of Sanctification means that we are set apart from the world, being made more and more like Jesus Christ.
“And by that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.”
God not only sees us as being in the sanctification process, but as already being sanctified!
1 Corinthians 6:11
“And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.”
Sanctification is a process in which the Holy Spirit cleanses us, however, we can hinder the workings of the Holy Spirit by disobeying God.
2 Timothy 2:21
“Therefore, if anyone cleanses himself from what is dishonorable, he will be a vessel for honorable use, set apart as holy, useful to the master of the house, ready for every good work.”
“And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.“
God tells us that when we are born-again then we are sealed by the Holy Spirit for the day of redemption! Who is strong enough to break that seal?! Even if we grieve the Holy Spirit we remained sealed by God!
Jesus also tells us that He will lose none that the Father has given to Him!
“All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out. 38 For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me. 39 This is the will of the Father who sent Me, that of all He has given Me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up at the last day. 40 And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in Him may have everlasting life; and I will raise him up at the last day.“
Not only does Jesus tell us that He will not lose any of us, but that He will raise us up on the last day!!! He says that everyone who sees Him and believes in Him will have everlasting life! I sure don’t know about you, but everlasting means forever to me! Jesus didn’t say that He would lose us if we sin or that He would not raise us up on the last day if we didn’t live up to His commands, but that He would not lose us and would raise us up on the last day! This is the will of our Father in heaven!
The apostle Paul tells us that nothing can separate us from the love of God, nothing!
“Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. 38 For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, 39 nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.“
Jesus also tells us that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life!
“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.“
Where in scripture does it say that this is conditional? Where does it say that our everlasting life is conditional upon our works? It doesn’t! And if you believe that it does than you are misinterpreting scripture! Scripture does not contradict itself we do! We must be Bereans and search the scriptures, pray to God for enlightenment, wisdom and understanding. And if we see a contradiction in scripture, then we are not understanding scripture the way that it was meant to be understood!
God sees all of His children as already being justified, sanctified, and yes even glorified!
“Moreover whom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified.“
Glorification is the process of God perfecting us into the image of His Son Jesus Christ!
2 Corinthians 3:18
“But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.“
“For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, 21 who will transform our lowly body that it may be conformed to His glorious body, according to the working by which He is able even to subdue all things to Himself.“
1 John 3:2
“Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. 3 And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure.“
When we are glorified we shall be like Him! We will see Him as He is, our lowly bodies will be conformed to His glorious body, we will be transformed into the same image as Christ by the Spirit of the Lord!
Once born-again we are justified, sanctified, and glorified, it’s as if it has already been done, because it has! God knows no bounds, He is not bound by time as we are, He sees things differently than we do. As humans on this earth and in this universe, we are bound by the laws of nature and physics, we live in a world that is conformed by time, God isn’t! According to God once we are saved we are already justified, sanctified, and glorified!
So believe what you will, believe that once saved you can lose your salvation, or like me believe that once you are born-again you will always be saved! How can you rest assured of your salvation if you don’t know if you have already lost it or not?! How can you live the way God wills if you don’t know if you are good enough to maintain it? And if you must perform certain “good works” then just how many and to what degree? And if you commit sins then just how many and how bad do they have to be in order to lose your salvation?! And if you must not sin in order to keep your salvation then do you really believe that you are still saved? And if you must not sin then are you not boasting that you have maintained your salvation and that it was not God that did it? Does this not take away all of the glory from God?! And if you must not commit certain acts to maintain your salvation just what sins are they? This could go on and on and on my friends with no end in sight! This is not how God wants us to live as His children, but with assurance and confidence that we belong to Him, that we are His prized possessions for eternity! This is our faith in God, knowing that He will never leave us nor forsake us, never!
‘Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” 6 So we may boldly say:
“The Lord is my helper;
I will not fear.
What can man do to me?” ‘
And if we believe that we can lose our salvation then how are we to boldly say the Lord is my helper, I will not fear, what can man do to me?!
If you must do or not do something in order to maintain your salvation then it is not Christ alone who saves us, but Christ plus something! So, if you believe that you can lose your salvation, then when you share the gospel of Jesus Christ do you also tell the unbeliever that he or she may lose it afterwards?! If not then you are lying to yourself, but if you do then you are also lying because it is not the truth! If you really believe that you can lose your salvation then you must tell them that they can then lose it. However, you will not be able to tell them how or by what means because you don’t know, you don’t know what sins or the degree of the sins, you don’t know what good works or if they were enough. You would never know just when you lost your salvation, and then what would you do? You have to continuously repent and ask God to save you over and over again!
That’s the point, it’s nothing that we do or don’t do that saves us, if it were than we are telling Jesus Christ that His sacrifice on the cross really didn’t mean much, that He wasn’t the perfect sacrifice!
Jesus Christ is God, He is the only way to heaven, He is the perfect sacrifice for all the sins of the world! He is the way, the truth, and the life, the only way! There is absolutely nothing in this life or hereafter that can separate us from the love of God, nothing! The only way to have everlasting life is to be born-again, and the only way to be born-again is by repenting of your sins and accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior! Everlasting, eternal, both have the same meaning, and that is forever and ever! God is eternal life and those that belong to God have eternal life!
Salvation belongs to those who have repented of their sins and have faith that Jesus Christ is who He says that He is, to those who place their faith and trust in Him, to those who make Him their Lord and Savior. Salvation means eternal life, unconditional upon what we do or don’t do afterwards. Does this give us a ticket to sin? Of course not, on the contrary, it means that we are to allow the Holy Spirit to work in us and through us, to live God’s will in our lives, to love God and to obey God, but it also means that God loves us so much that He is continually washing us clean from our sin!
Once born-again God has written His laws and commandments upon our hearts and He will remember our sins no more!
‘For by one offering He has perfected forever those who are being sanctified.
15 But the Holy Spirit also witnesses to us; for after He had said before,
16 “This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, says the Lord: I will put My laws into their hearts, and in their minds I will write them,” 17 then He adds, “Their sins and their lawless deeds I will remember no more.” ‘
God bless my friends! Maranatha!