Scripture Reading: Now the just shall live by faith: but if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him. But we are not of them who draw back unto perdition; but of them that believe to the saving of the soul.
Definition: Eternal security [referred to as the “perseverance of the saints” in Calvinist theology, or commonly known as “once saved always saved”] is variously interpreted. In essence, it is a teaching which asserts that once a person is truly regenerated or born again there is nothing that can cause a reversal of the converted condition. This doctrine purports that once a person has accepted Christ and been saved, God will preserve the individual and his salvation is eternally secure without possibility of losing that salvation.
Summary: An individual’s salvation is exclusively by the grace of God and is not based on works. God will be faithful to preserve that individual by His grace which enables a life of holiness. Salvation is a covenant relationship of faith; so if an individual chooses to swerve from that faith and commitment to God, the relationship is broken and salvation is forfeited. Hence, while eternal security or “once saved always saved” is a theological fallacy, a believer can rest in God’s grace and be eternally secure as he follows Christ in faith.
I. Salvation Solely by Grace Through Faith
A. Ephesians 2:8-9 By grace are ye saved (Romans 5:1).
B. Hebrews 7:25 God saves to the uttermost.
C. 2 Corinthians 5:17 New creature in Christ.
II. Eternal Life Is a Gift of God
A. John 5:24 He that believeth hath everlasting life (1 John 5:11-13).
B. John 6:37-40 He that cometh, Jesus will in no wise cast out.
C. Romans 6:20-23 Wages of sin/gift of God.
III. Security in God
A. John 10:27-29 Christ’s sheep shall never perish.
B. Romans 8:35-39 Nothing can separate from the love of God.
IV. God Is Faithful to Preserve
A. Jude 1:24 Keeps from falling (1 Peter 1:5).
B. 2 Corinthians 1:22 God seals the believer(Ephesians 4:30).
C. 1 Corinthians 1:8-9 Confirmed unto the end.
D. Philippians 1:6 God will finish the work.
V. Spiritual Relationship Illustrated
John 15:1-11 The believer is to abide in Christ, the vine.
VI. Holiness Required
A. 1 Corinthians 6:9-11 The unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God.
B. Hebrews 12:14-15 Follow holiness lest you be defiled.
C. 1 John 1:6 Profession of fellowship while in darkness is a lie.
VII. Evidence That Salvation Can Be Lost
A. Matthew 13:3-9 Parable of the sower.
B. 1 Timothy 4:1 Some shall depart from the faith (Acts 20:28-30).
C. Galatians 5:1, 4 Fallen from grace.
D. 1 Timothy 6:9-11 Erring from the faith.
E. Hebrews 3:12-14 Unbelief causes departure from God.
F. 2 John 1:8-9 Lose not the things you have wrought.
G. Revelation 3:3-6 Defiled garments.
H. 2 Peter 2:20-22 Entangled and Overcome.
I. 1 Corinthians 3:16-17 God will destroy a defiled temple.
See Also: 1 Corinthians 9:27, 2 Peter 3:17, Romans 11:21-23, 2 Timothy 2:17-19.
VIII. Exhortation to Faithfulness
A. Colossians 1:21-23 Be not moved away.
B. 1 Corinthians 15:58 Be stedfast and unmoveable.
C. Hebrews 4:14 Hold fast our profession (Hebrews 3:14).
D. 1 Timothy 6:12 Lay hold on eternal life.
Be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.