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Eternal Security

This is the confidence that every person who has received the gift of salvation has been given life that is eternal with God for eternity. Before studying this important topic, it is only logical and highly beneficial to consider the fact that God desperately wants His children to know that they are safe and secure with Him.

I John 5:13 says, "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...". The "things" to which John refers are found in the first twelve verses of the chapter, namely that those who believe on the Lord Jesus Christ have eternal life and, in turn, will show fruit by keeping the commandmants of God as sound in His Word.

Salvation produces fruit/works - works do not produce salvation. In other words, fruit is a result of salvation, not a condition for it. God does not want His children to be confused or uncertain as to their relationship with Him. No, God wants us to know where we stand for all eternity.

Consider the terms used to describe salvation

"eternal life" (John 3:16; I John 5:11) - "full assurance" (Hebrews 6:11; Colossians 2:2) - "strong consolation" (Hebrews 6:18) - "hope...sure and steadfast" (Hebrews 6:19)

God the Father keeps us secure

Everlasting life is a free gift from God the Father. Romans 6:23 reveals that eternal life is the gift of God. In order for "eternal life" to be truly "eternal," it must be irrevocable or else it would not be truly "eternal."

This gift from God is obtained only through faith alone in Jesus Christ, His Son, not by any works or merits of man. Thus, the gift is entirely free. Man obtains this gift only by receiving it.

In the infinite power of God the Father, He promises to hold and protect all who have received His free gift. John 10:27-30 reveals that no believer is able to be plucked from the hand of God the Father.

When Jesus says that no man can pluck a true believer from His hand and that no man can pluck a believer from His Father's hand, and that He and His Father are one, He is making the strongest possible statement concerning the securiy of the believer. No man has the ability or the power to snatch the sheep from God's hand because He is perfectly able to keep the sheep secure due to His omnipotence.

God promises to hold and protect the believer to the very end. Philippians 1:6 and I Peter 1:3-5 teach that God is the Author of salvation and that, as the Author, He ensures that all His children are "kept" by His power.

Philippians 1:6 provides no room whatsoever for even the possibility that one could lose his salvation, for if such were the case, then not only would the believer not be "confident" of his   salvation, but God would not actually finish what He had begun in the believer's life.

1 Peter: 3-5 notes that because God is all-powerful, the believer is "kept" in the unfailing grasp of His hand. The believer has a "lively hope" or "living expectation" described in verse four. If the believer possessed the ability to lose his salvation, then he would certainly have no "hope" or confidence in the first place.

Jesus Christ keeps us secure

Because of Jesus Christ's work on Calvary's tree, nothing will be able to separate the believer from God (Romans 8:38-39). This makes it very clear that a believer cannot be separated from God.

Hebrews 7:25 teaches us that we are secured and kept by the interceding work of Jesus Christ on our behalf. This reveals that, though we sin and displease our Father at times, Jesus Christ is ever interceding on our behalf. Romans 8:34 reminds us that Jesus Christ is currently at the right hand of the Father making intercession for us.

1 John 3:1-3 reminds us that believers are certainly prone at times to wander from the commandments of the Word and from a right relationship with the Lord. This does not mean that we lose our salvation as a result. The completed, perfected work of Jesus Christ has secured our salvation. Jesus Christ is the believer's "Advocate with the Father." God has not only made salvation possible, but also makes the security of the believer everlasting.

The Holy Spirit keeps us secure

At the moment of salvation, a believer is completely and totally indwelt by the Holy Spirit. Ephesians 4:30 tells us the Holy Spirit seals us until the return of Christ. The seal is a legally-binding contract between God and the believer. Paul teaches us that while we are able to grieve the Holy Spirit through our actions, our actions are powerless to break the seal of the Spirit.

The seal of the Holy Spirit is given to us by God the Father. II Corinthians 5:5 teaches us that God has given to us the "earnest of the Spirit." The Holy Spirit is our "earnest" or "guarantee" or   "down payment" by God until the very day we are glorified when Christ returns.

Study Questions

1. According to the follwing verses, what kind of life is given to those who believe
    in Jesus Christ?
    a. John 3:15-16
    b. John 5:24
    c. John 10:28
    d. Romans 6:23

2. According to John 6:37, will Jesus Christ turn away any who come to Him?

3. According to Romans 8:35-39, who or what can separate the believer from the love
    of Christ?

4. Describe the role of God the Father in keeping the believer saved.

5. Describe the role of Jesus Christ in keeping the believer saved.

6. Describe the role of the Holy Spirit in keeping the believer saved.

7. The fact that we are eternally secure does not mean we have license to sin. According
    to the following Scripture references, what are the consequences when we commit sin
    as believers?
    a. Psalm 66:18
    b. 1 John 1:6-10
    c. John 15:4-5
    d. II Corinthians 5:10
    e. II Thessalonians 3:14

8. These verses teach us that the grace of God actually motivates believers to do what?
    a. 1 John 4:19
    b. Romans 2:4
    c. Ephesians 3:14-19
    d. Titus 2:11-12

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