Lesson 02 - Eternal Security

Lesson 2 - Eternal Security

Eternal Security

The doctrine of eternal security is the Scriptural teaching that once a person becomes a believer in Christ, that person is secure in Christ forever.  (I John 5:13)

There is sound doctrinal reasoning for knowing that a believer is secure forever.  The most important fact to note is that eternal security depends upon God’s faithfulness, not man’s faithfulness.  It is the life of God (eternal life) that He imputes (credits) to every believer at the moment of salvation, which assures us of an eternal relationship with Him.  The Bible says that believers are guarded in the “hand of God.”  We are also given a guarantee in the Person of the Holy Spirit, Who indwells every believer.  The Holy Spirit Himself is the seal that secures forever our eternal life.  Since salvation is a grace function and has nothing whatsoever to do with human effort or human merit, losing your salvation through sin would negate God’s grace – a blasphemous thought. (John 10:28-29, 14:16-17)

If a believer could lose his salvation through sin, who is to be the judge of which particular sin cancels his salvation?  If you merely have life until you sin again, then you do not have eternal life.  A lack of understanding or believing in the eternal security of the believer results in lack of confidence in God and His Word.  Assurance of salvation should be dealt with in spiritual childhood and cease to be an issue once a believer has begun to learn and apply Bible doctrine.  Confidence in God is a priestly function and is obtained by the consistent study and application of God’s Word.  The more doctrine you learn and apply, the more you know about God and the more confident you become in His plan and purpose for you. (Romans 8:38-39; I John 3:21-22)

Once you have gained confidence in your salvation, you can relax knowing that regardless of what people or circumstances do to you that you are eternally secure in Christ.  This divine viewpoint mental attitude has the result of confidence towards God and courage towards man.  Since you are not trusting any member of the human race, including yourself, to secure your salvation, you can have complete confidence in the “powerful hand of God” to keep you secure forever. (Isaiah 41:10: John 10:28-29)

Sin after Salvation

As previously stated, a believer in Christ can never lose his salvation because of personal sin.  There are numerous examples throughout Scripture of believers who sinned without losing their salvation (David, Moses, Jonah, Peter, Paul).  Though sin is not an issue at salvation, it is an issue in the Christian Way of Life because it removes our fellowship with God, and grieves or quenches the Holy Spirit.  Every believer sins after trusting Christ as Savior, but as you grow spiritually you should begin to sin less though you will never be sinless while in this body.  Therefore, sin in the life of a believer cannot cancel the work of Christ on the Cross.  God’s grace is so much greater than any sin you or I could commit. (I John 1:6-10; Ephesians 4:30; I Thessalonians 5:19)

It is actually God’s grace that not only saves us but it is also God’s grace that keeps us saved.  It is our standing (position) in grace that assures us that we can never be lost once our faith is placed in Christ as Savior.  A person cannot attain a righteous standing before God and a person cannot maintain a righteous standing before God by his own merits.  It is God’s job to keep the believer secure and God always does His job. (John 6:37; Ephesians 2:8-10; Jude 24)

Since personal sins were dealt with at the Cross when Jesus Christ made the full payment for all sin once and for all, condemnation has been removed from those persons that by faith appropriate the free gift of eternal life.  It is never sin that condemns a person, since Christ became sin for us.  We are all condemned at birth through the imputation of Adam’s original sin and we remain condemned by our own volition when we reject the salvation solution found in Christ. (John 3:18; Romans 5:12, 8:1-4)

If a person could lose their salvation through personal sin, then there would be no need for the recovery system found in I John 1:9.  If a person could lose his salvation, he would have to trust Christ as Savior over and over again each time he sinned.  This type of system would make God a liar, a blasphemous thought.  The Bible clearly states that eternal life is a gift.  What kind of God would give you a gift one day and take it back the next?  This, of course, is not the case.  When God makes an unconditional covenant with man, such as the New Covenant (which is a covenant of grace), it is irrevocable.  The New Covenant guarantees eternal life to the believer on the basis of Christ’s substitutionary spiritual death for mankind.  No one, not even God, can reverse Christ’s payment for sin. (John 3:16; Romans 5:8; II Corinthians 5:21; Hebrews 8:6)

The Power of God

The power of God is unequalled by anything that man can invent or manufacture.  In Greek the word is “dunamis” (from which we get the word “dynamite”).  It is this power that is securing forever the believer’s salvation.  Translated in the Bible as “able,” God’s power is His ability to keep the believer safe for all eternity.  Since the believer has obtained an eternal relationship with omnipotent (all-powerful) God, nothing can separate us from this relationship.  As a member of God’s family, it is irrational thinking to believe that you can remove yourself from His family by some failure on your part.  (Romans 4:21; 8:14-17, 31-39; Galatians 4:4-7; II Timothy 1:12; Hebrew 7:25)

Not only are we, as believers in Christ, kept by the power of God, we have the most powerful advocate in the universe on our side, Jesus Christ.  He is not only our advocate, He is our mediator and our intercessor.  Christ is at the right hand of God the Father as our representative.  No one can bring accusations against a believer that are not answered by Christ on the believer’s behalf.  Even Satan attempts to discredit us before God, but Jesus Christ Himself stands up for us declaring that we are secure forever “in Him.”  (I John 2:1; Romans 8:34; I Timothy 2:5; Hebrews 9:15; Revelation 12:10)

There is another power that assures our salvation forever and that is the power that raised Jesus from the dead (resurrection power).  Because of the Resurrection, our eternal life and the confidence of receiving a glorified body like Christ’s have been secured for us forever.  As a matter of fact, if Christ is not risen then we are still lost and on our way to the Lake of Fire.  However, Christ did conquer death and the grave and we become partakers in His resurrection at salvation.  The entire Godhead (the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit) took part in the resurrection.  As a believer in Christ, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit permanently indwell your body, which is just one more assurance of your eternal salvation.  It takes a very arrogant person to think that he can undo all that God has done for him as a believer in Christ (a sure sign of an immature faith). (Romans 4:25; I Corinthians 6:14; 15:12-19, 51-57; Philippians 3:10; Ephesians 4:6; Colossians 1:27; I Corinthians 6:19)

The Keeping Power of the Father

The Bible states that God is not willing that any should perish but that all should come to the knowledge of the truth.  Since this is God’s desire, it seems very unlikely that once He “had you” that He would let you go.  We are said to be kept in the Father’s hand – there is not a more secure place.  The Father also indwells every believer, a further guarantee of eternal life. The Father has given His word that if a person will believe in Christ as Savior they will never perish - and God cannot lie.  (John 10:29; 14:23; Ephesians 4:6: I John 5:1-13)

The Keeping Power of the Son

There are numerous analogies in Scripture regarding the relationship that a believer has with Christ.  One in particular points to the keeping work of Christ on our behalf.  This analogy is the Shepherd and the Sheep.  One of the many duties performed by a shepherd is to keep his flock secure.  What is unique about our Shepherd is that He is indwelling the Sheep (the believer).  Jesus said of all who the Father had given Him, He would lose none of them, but raise them up in the last day.  What He was teaching by this is eternal security.  “All that the Father gives Him” refers to all believers and the fact that they can never be lost and are guaranteed a resurrection body. (John 6:37-40; 10:1-16, 26-30)

The Keeping Power of the Holy Spirit

The third person of the Trinity is Himself our guarantee of an eternal inheritance.  He is the down payment until the final redemption of those that have been purchased from the Slave Market of Sin (all believers in Christ).  The Holy Spirit is our “seal” Who was promised by Jesus, and fulfilled on the day of Pentecost.  The Holy Spirit also permanently indwells the believer, as not only a guarantee of eternal life, but as our constant companion to teach and guide us as we execute God’s plan for our lives. (John 16:12-15; Ephesians 1:13-14; I Corinthians 1:22; II Corinthians 5:5)

Assurance of our salvation is promised many times and in many ways throughout the Scripture, as we have seen.  Therefore, believe God when He tells you that you are secure in Christ.  Knowledge of God’s Word should be the only assurance that a believer needs and a lack of assurance is a sign that a person is still a babe in Christ. God says you are secure and that settles it! (I Corinthians 13:11; Hebrews 5:11-14; 6:1-3; Ephesians 4:12-14)