In order to answer this question, we need to understand the issue of who does the saving and why. If man is even partly responsible for the work in obtaining his own salvation, then salvation can be lost. However, if God is wholly responsible for the work in securing our salvation, it cannot be lost.
There are several statements that Jesus made that should clear up this issue for us. Jesus said in John 6:37 “All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out.” Jesus then goes on to say in John 6:39 “And this is the will of him who sent me, that I should lose nothing of all that he has given me, but raise it up on the last day.” Jesus is explaining that we were given to Jesus by the Father and Jesus has declared that He shall lose no one. It is Jesus’ ability to keep those that have been given to Him. This has been decided before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:4-5). All that God declares that will happen shall happen. We are incapable of thwarting what God has declared will come to pass. We are saved for His glory (Isaiah 43:25).
Romans 8:30 tells us that those whom God has predestined, He also glorified (past tense). Even though we have not yet been glorified, Paul uses the past tense for God has already accomplished it. He has redeemed us (Ephesians 1:7) removed the wrath of God from us (Romans 3:25), and forgiven us (1 John 2:12) in order that we be justified and sanctified (1 Corinthians 6:11).
Lastly, we have been sealed with the Holy Spirit who is the guarantor of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it (Ephesians 1:13-14). If salvation can be lost, God could not have declared that the Holy Spirit is a guarantee of our inheritance. The seal placed upon us reflects ownership. We belong to Him for Jesus paid the price for our salvation and have been given to Him and He shall not lose what was given to Him. The seal of the Holy Spirit guarantees that those that have been given to Him will be not be lost.
We are saved because we must believe that Jesus is Who He says He is and it is not tied to what we do. God seeks after us, we do not initiate contact with Him for scripture states that no one seeks after God (Romans 3:11). God seeks after us and calls on whom He will save (Galatians 1:15-16). Since we are in no position to save ourselves, it is God who saves us to completion. Ephesians 2:8-9 states “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.”
What God began in whom He has called, He will carry it to completion until the day of Jesus Christ (Philippians 1:6). What this means is that it is God who bears the responsibility of completing what He started.
John 5:24 states “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who hears My word and believes in Him who sent Me has everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment, but has passed from death into life.” This verse states that the one who trusts in Christ has everlasting life in the present as it is written in the present tense. It is not a future event. How long is everlasting life? Everlasting life is forever. According to Hebrews 10:14 “For by one offering He has perfected forever those who are being sanctified.” God has already perfected forever (past tense) those who are being sanctified. His work of perfecting those whom are presently being sanctified is a finished work. Christians cannot lose their salvation for we cannot undo what He has already perfected.
The work of God is independent of man. Salvation is a work of God and we respond to His ability to complete what He started. Salvation glorifies God and it is for His name’s sake that He saves (Psalm 106:8).
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