While sharing recently, a common, but a general question
was asked. For centuries the question has been argued by great thinkers and
religious scholars, and the debate continues to date. Frankly, this question
has excellent answers from both sides of the question. I applaud anyone and
everyone who dares investigate and continues to examine this question impartially.
I would be remiss in my responsibility to others if I did not make the
following statement before beginning this narrative.
Certaintycan be the faith of cowards. Everyone, especially religious leaders, must remain open-minded
and willing to argue, defend, and be prepared to concede, if mistaken, all that
they claim as correct.
The question is: Can we lose our salvation? The comment I
usually hear following that question is, I
was taught once saved, always saved. Let me address the latter first. John Calvin created this doctrine from a
misinterpretation of Saint Augustine's Treatise on the Gift of Perseverance,
written around 429 A.D. Once
saved, always saved is not in Scripture. As for the question can we
lose our salvation, I firmly believe this must be a personal decision based on individual research. A personal decision made only after
thorough, but never-ending impartial study
and review. There is no room for mistake here, no do-over or excuses.
Our eternity is at stake.
personal decision is yes; I can lose my salvation. I can support my
decision with 75 or 80 warnings that do not need scholarly Scriptural interpretation to understand. Others who
disagree with me can do the same. When asked this question directly, I answer
what I believe for me alone.
Am I willing to hear arguments to the contrary? Yes, I always welcome
discussion and continually seek knowledge from others, but I make time to
research, with an open mind, afterward. In other words, I believe what I
believe, but I am not so puffed-up that I will not listen to, and impartially research,
different points of view. I am not so puffed-up that I will not admit when I am
mistaken. As I stated earlier, certainty
can be the faith of cowards.
Time, space, and format do not allow me to
exhaustively or even adequately express the reasoning of my personal decision.
So I will draw from a lower shelf and attempt to explain extremely in brief why I believe anyone can lose their salvation.
·From the Book of John,
we read, My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they know Me. And I give
them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch
them out of my hand.
I was okay with that in the beginning until I realized –
even though no one will be snatched from His hand…I can decide to jump out of it!
·There are several
examples; for example, Rev. 3:5, where we find our name, can be blotted out from the Book of Life.
After reading so many places in Scripture where I can be
"blotted out," or similar words of that meaning, I realized my
salvation is not and was never a
When I wrestled with the question of it being possible to
lose my salvation, what seems to have put the pieces of that puzzle together
for me was reasoned thinking. I started with the most significant reason for
the possibility of losing it – I am human. As long as I continue to ask God to
forgive my sins – I am not saved, His grace forgives
me. The tearful, goosebump filled meltdown I had was me finally accepting
Christ Jesus – not being saved. There is a difference between justification and
salvation. I am indeed Blessed by God continually, and it amazes me. I am not
foolhardy enough to believe the reason I am so Blessed is that I am saved. As
long as I breathe, I must continue to have faith and continuously work on my
relationship with God. My God is my Creator and will save me when I can sin no
more, or He won't. He knows my heart, and that is what is most important to me,
let the other's debate.
From the Book of Jeremiah, he shared, "The human heart
is the most deceitful of all things, and desperately wicked. Who really knows
how bad it is?" But I, the Lord, search all hearts and examine secret
motives. I give all people their due rewards, according to what their actions
18:9-10).Love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your
mind. I bet that is just how He sees His relationship with us, His creation. I
do not want to be saved yet because I in no way deserve it as long as I continue to sin. God's Will be done now and