Your Convictions About Eternal Security
Key Passages: Romans 5:6-10; Ephesians 2:8-9
Supporting Scriptures: Matthew 7:20 | John 3:3 | John 3:16 | Romans 10:9 | Ephesians 1:13-14 | Ephesians 2:8-9 | Titus 3:5 | Hebrews 9:27 | Hebrews 12:5-6 | 1 John 1:7-10 | 1 John 2:1-2 | 1 John 3:8-9
As Christians we need to have a firm conviction regarding our eternal security.
But sometimes even after we’ve placed our trust in Jesus Christ as Savior, we may have doubts about our salvation. The problem could be that we can’t remember a specific time or place that we surrendered our lives to Christ. Or perhaps we’ve committed sins that cause us to question whether we were truly saved. To settle this matter in our hearts, we need to understand what God’s Word says about salvation and eternal security.
As long as we have doubts about our eternal security, three major issues will occur:
- We’ll be unable to enjoy the blessings God has given us.
- Our service for the Lord will be limited because we won’t trust Him to enable us.
- We may be guilty of misleading others in their faith.
Since judgment comes after death, we need to have a conviction today about where we’ll spend eternity (Heb. 9:27). A conviction is being so thoroughly convinced that something is absolutely true that we take a stand for it, regardless of the consequences.
A true salvation experience provides the gift of eternal life.
Eternal life is that quality of life God gives to believers at salvation that never ceases but goes on forever. The first step in developing a conviction about eternal security is to understand what’s involved in salvation.
- Ephesians 2:8-9 “For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.” Salvation is the result of God’s grace, not our goodness or performance. Grace is God’s unmerited, undeserved, loving favor. Though we did nothing to deserve it, He chose to save us.
- Romans 5:8-9 “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him.” Since the Lord is holy, and His justice requires a payment for sin, He couldn’t just ignore our wrongdoing. Jesus’ atoning death on the cross was the sacrifice that satisfied His justice, making salvation available to all who would believe in Christ. Now, through the death of His Son we are reconciled back into a relationship with the Father and saved from His wrath (v. 10).
- John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.” Faith in Christ is required for salvation. However, this isn’t merely believing some facts about Him but acknowledging that Jesus is God’s means of salvation and surrendering our lives fully to Him.
- Romans 10:9 “If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.” Confessing Jesus as Lord means we agree that Christ’s death on our behalf provides complete forgiveness of our sin. And we believe that God raised Him from the dead, proving that He accepted Christ’s sacrifice as full payment for our sins.
The Lord doesn’t provide the gift of salvation without also giving us the assurance that it’s ours. That’s why He sent His Spirit to indwell and seal us as His children until the day of our redemption (Eph. 1:13-14). The Holy Spirit’s seal is the guarantee of our salvation and cannot be broken by anyone.
Eternal security is the work of God in Christ that guarantees that the gift of salvation once received by faith is possessed forever and cannot be lost.
Many people believe they are basically good, but according to the Lord’s standard, we are all sinners, and no one is good enough to be accepted into heaven. Good deeds can’t save us, and they won’t keep us saved. Although sin no longer fits our new identity in Christ, we’ll still sin at times. However, when we understand the biblical doctrine of eternal security, we won’t excuse our sin or take advantage of our secure position as children of God by living in sin.
Salvation is neither achieved nor maintained by anything we do, and it cannot be lost if we sin.
In the book of 1 John, the apostle John explains how believers are to deal with sin when it occurs in their lives.
- “The blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin” (1 John 1:7). The tense of the Greek verb signifies a continuous, habitual action of cleansing for our sin by Christ’s blood.
- “If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves” (v. 8). Believers are still capable of sin even after salvation.
- “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (v. 9). This is the solution for the times we stumble and fall. Confession is acknowledging to God that we have acted in a manner inconsistent with His character and standards.
- “I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous; and He Himself is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for those of the whole world” (1 John 2:1-2). It’s not God’s will that we sin, but Jesus is our Advocate before the Father when we do. His sacrifice fully atoned for mankind’s sin and satisfied God’s justice. When we repent and believe that Christ died for our sins, we are justified and declared righteous before God.
- “No one who is born of God practices sin, because His seed abides in him; and he cannot sin, because he is born of God” (1 John 3:9). In other words, if we are truly born again, sin will not be a continuing practice in our lives. There may be brief periods of sin, but we will soon feel the Holy Spirit’s conviction.
In the life of believers, sin brings God’s discipline, not the loss of salvation.
Having been saved by the blood of Jesus and sealed by the Holy Spirit, we are eternally secure. And as God’s children, we are called to live a holy life and deal immediately with sin. If we don’t, our loving heavenly Father will be faithful to discipline us so we can be restored to a godly lifestyle (Heb. 12:5-6).
- Do you sometimes doubt that you’re saved? If so, have you done what Scripture says is required for salvation? If not, please take that step today so that your eternal destiny will be secure.
- If you’ve already accepted Christ as your Savior, what specific assurances from God’s Word will protect you from doubting your salvation?