Can a Christian Lose Their Salvation?

July 2, 2023

Lead Pastor Dr. Timothy Melton

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If one truly puts his or her faith in Jesus Christ it is impossible to lose that faith. 

As we look at Ephesians 2:8-9 we see that it is “By grace you are saved, through faith." The grace of God is what covers our sin and reconciles us to God, but salvation is “triggered” by our faith. Once we believe, we inherit all the promises that are due a child of God. This can never be undone. Things can never go back to how they were before. Once the power of God has been unleashed by our God-given faith it can never be revoked. Even as we pass through moments when our faith struggles His Spirit that lives in us will continue to work in us to bolster our faith and make sure it is secure forever. “If we are faithless, he remains faithful—for he cannot deny himself (2 Timothy 2:13).

Let us look to the scriptures to see what occurs when one puts their trust in Jesus Christ.

A Christian is a new creation. “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come” (2 Corinthians 5:17). The Christian is a new person. Yes, they still look the same and have some of the same characteristics, but at the core of who they are they have been made new. They have been forgiven. They have been freed from their selfish desires and their “old selves.” They are no longer slaves to sin. Something totally new has come. The old sinful person has died. Galatians 2:20 states, "I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me.”

Our old sinful self is not just sick, lying dormant or in some sort of spiritual hibernation or coma. The old self that was in bondage to sin and unbelief is dead and gone. For someone to be able to lose salvation the new creation would have to be destroyed, the person would have to be removed from Christ, and the old self which has been put to death and put away would somehow have to be raised back to life.  But the new reality is that “It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me.” The unbeliever I used to be, is gone. Christ now lives in me. He is my new identity and He cannot disown or not believe in Himself. The faith that has ushered one into salvation now is irrevocably connected to one’s identity in Christ. 

A Christian is redeemed. “Knowing that you were ransomed from the futile ways inherited from your forefathers, not with perishable things such as silver or gold,  but with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without blemish or spot.” (1 Peter 1:18–19). The word ransomed or redeemed refers to a purchase being made, a price being paid. We could not buy salvation with silver or gold or even with our own good works. We were desperately lost in sin and in need of a Savior. “The wages of sin is death,” (Romans 6:23) but we were purchased. . . ransomed, by the death of Christ which was the price that was required to grant us life. There was nothing that we did to merit salvation. It was fully accomplished by Christ and through faith it became ours. Even our faith began with Christ, who is the Author and Perfecter of faith (Hebrews 12:2).

To lose our salvation we would have to somehow revoke or return the “ransom” cost that Christ paid for us. 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 declares that we “are not our own. We have been bought with a price.” We have become children of God, a co-heir with Christ. Even if it was possible, we no longer even have the authority to revoke the redemption that is over our lives. We are completely His.

A Christian has been marked by God and has received the Holy Spirit to dwell within them, as the guarantor of eternal life with Christ. “In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory” (Ephesians 1:13–14). The Holy Spirit guides the believer into all truth, convicts of sin, and causes the believer to walk in the ways of God (Ezekiel 36:26-27). That guarantee would now have to be undone if one could lose their salvation. If this were possible then the Holy Spirit would not have been the guarantor of anything. 

So be encouraged. Nothing can separate us from the love of Christ (Romans 8:38-39) and nothing can snatch us out of His hand (John 10:29). So those who are truly in Christ can rest in the fact that they will be made like Christ and that Christ has gone to prepare a place for us. Rest in His love and be compelled to righteous deeds by the love that we have been granted. We are secure in Christ with a love that will not let us go.