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28485
“Saved and Lost?”
by Art Sadlier   
March 7th, 2016

Eternal Security

Can a believer lose his or her salvation? That is a question that troubles a lot of Christians, the answer can give great peace and stability to a true child of God.

We need to understand that the word of God teaches that God alone can provide salvation. Man has no part to play in his salvation, it is all of God. Only a Divine human Savior could go to the cross and pay the price of sin and only God by His Spirit could apply that salvation to an individual. The scripture says that we are saved by grace through faith. Grace is God providing salvation; faith moves the hand of God to provide it.  

Salvation is the gift of God, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16). Once the gift has been received only the giver can take it away and He has promised never to do that.

“For the LORD loveth judgment, and forsaketh not his saints; they are preserved for ever: but the seed of the wicked shall be cut off.” (Psalm 37:28). “All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out” (John 6:37). “For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 8:38, 39).God has promised that salvation is forever and He cannot lie or break His promise.

“Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life” (John 5:24).  “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life” (John 6:47). 

You can't have everlasting life for a few years and then lose it, once you have it you have it is forever, “And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day” (John 6:40), in this verse the outcome rests entirely on God and His promise.

We need to understand also what happens at salvation; Peter said that when a person is saved he or she becomes a partaker of the divine nature. “Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. (2 Peter 1:4). We actually become a partaker of the very nature of God, we are born again. Paul said we become new creatures in Christ. John said that our new nature cannot sin. “We know that whosoever is born of God sinneth not; but he that is begotten of God keepeth himself, and that wicked one toucheth him not” (1 John 5:18).

Though we know that the old sin nature is ever present until we are glorified, yet we have a divine nature that cannot sin. A Christian has no sin in him, that is in his new divine nature though until his glorification he has sin on him, that is on his old sin nature. "Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is" (1 John 3:2).

The Christian has a new nature that canot sin and he has an old nature that cannot produce righteousness. "That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit" (Romans 8:4-5).

This new nature is a divine nature that cannot sin, could not turn away from the Lord, it can never go back, it could never reject what it has already received, it can never be lost.

If a true believer were to be cast into hell God would be cast into hell with him. “Let your conversation be without covetousness; and becontent with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee” (Hebrews 13:5).  

Other verses give assurance of a salvation that can never be lost.
But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, as I said unto you. My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand.” (John 10:26-29).                                         

Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away” (Matthew 24:35).                                                                                                                                                                                                                             “The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God” (Romans 8:16).

We need to understand that many people think they are saved and they are not. False profession is a major problem in this issue.

We see this in Matthew 13:20-22, “But he that received the seed into stony places, the same is he that heareth the word, and anon with joy receiveth it; Yet hath he not root in himself, but dureth for a while: for when tribulation or persecution ariseth because of the word, by and by he is offended. He also that received seed among the thorns is he that heareth the word; and the care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becometh unfruitful."

We see the gospel being spread in the same way a farmer sows the seed, some respond and make a profession of faith and they look good for a while but time proves that they never had the root of the matter, they had never been saved, Verse 6, "they had no root".

Notice they were self-deceived into believing that they were saved and they were not. It's not that they had been saved and lost their salvation, Jesus said to them, "I never knew you", they were deceived into thinking they were believers but they were never saved.

We see the contrast in verse 23, "But he that received seed into the good ground is he that heareth the word, and understandeth it; which also beareth fruit, and bringeth forth, some an hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty."

That is the curse of New Evangelicalism that plagues the evangelical church today, they preach easy-believe-ism, you don't need to repent, you don't need to change, look at us we are so much like the world you can hardly tell the difference, just name the name of Jesus and you are in. The end result is a disaster, the disaster of Matthew 7:21-23, “Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.”

 A church full of pseudo believers is a catastrophe. Jesus said, "....Except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish" (Luke 13:3, 5).

Paul said, "Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith...." (2 Cor. 13:5).

We need not be in doubt, 1 John 5:13  "These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may KNOW that ye have eternal life...."

It's not saved and lost, it's lost because they were never really saved in the first place. “Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are his. And, Let everyone that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity” (2 Tim. 2:19).

MARKS OF A GENUINE CHRISTIAN

These things do not help you to obtain salvation (with the exception of numbers 1 & 2) but are the evidence that salvation has taken place.

1-  A true understanding of who Christ is and what He has done.

2-  A recognition of our sin and rebellion against God which is accompanied by repentance and faith in Christ as your savior.

3-  An obedience to the words and commands of Christ which is accompanied by a hunger to know God's word.   1 John 2:3, 4   ! John 3:24   John 14:21   Jeremiah 15:16.

4-  Love for our brothers in Christ.  "He that saith he is in the light, and hateth his brother, is in darkness even until now. He that loveth his brother abideth in the light, and there is none occasion of stumbling in him" (I John 2:9-11).   "We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. He that loveth not his brother abideth in death" (1 John 3:14).   "By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another" (John 13:35).

5-  Fellowship with other Christians.   "That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowshipis with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ" (1 John 1:3).  "Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching" (Hebrews 10;25).   "And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers. And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart, Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved" (Acts 2:42,46,47).

6-  Prayer -  a genuine relationship with Christ will involve communication with Him.  "If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you. " (John 15:7).    "Hitherto have ye asked nothing in my name: ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full"  (John 16:24).

7-  Witnessing - A readiness to witness to others as to what Christ has done for you.   "And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature"  (Mark 16:15).    "But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth" (Acts 1:8).

8-  Baptism - Baptism by immersion is not an option for a true believer. Though it has no part in salvation, it is a command of Christ.  "Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost" (Matthew 28:19).    "Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ. Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost" (Acts 2:37-38).

These are the eight marks of true salvation, if your faith in Christ is genuine saving faith, these marks will be found in your life in the coming days.  2 Corinthians 5:17, “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.”

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