This is a question we get almost every day via email: “Can a born-again Christian lose his or her salvation?”
The answer to that question biblically is a resounding clear emphatic joyful glorious no. A born-again person cannot become dead, cannot be unborn again.
Because and I’ll give some biblical thinking here. Try to be as textual as possible not just theological.
The life that is imparted in the new birth is precisely eternal life. 1 John 5:11 says: “And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.”
So he didn’t give us temporary life. He gave us eternal life. We are already participating in the life of the age to come.
Here’s another crucial word. This is in Romans 8:30:
Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.
Now glorification is the final state of permanent salvation. And this verse says that all the called with nobody dropping out are justified and all the justified with nobody dropping out are glorified.
If you’re called you cannot lose your salvation. And I’m going to argue that being called and being born again are identical in biblical categories. We are justified and glorified because we have been called. That is we have been born again. It is the kind of call that Paul is talking about.
There is the call of Lazarus by Jesus from the grave. “Lazarus, I know you’re dead now, come out.” And the call creates the life. That is what happened to everybody who’s a Christian God’s sovereign call created the life. Meaning there’s a promise attaching to the call.
Here are a couple of verses 1 Thessalonians 5:23:
And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
So the logic is if you’ve been called, God is faithful, you will be kept for the last day. Or here it is again in 1 Corinthians 1:8-9:
Who shall also confirm you unto the end, that ye may be blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.
So now you can go back and see why in Romans 8:30.
The called are justified and the justified are glorified because God is faithful. There’s nothing automatic. A lot of people think eternal security is like vaccination.
This is my favorite all-time yes to my perseverance:
And I will make an everlasting covenant with them, that I will not turn away from them, to do them good; but I will put my fear in their hearts, that they shall not depart from me (Jeremiah 32)
I preached on this a while back. I was at age 67, just finishing up my pastoral ministry.
I’m overwhelmed with the fact that God kept me. He kept me, He didn’t let me fall down and bring reproach upon His name. I don’t look back on that and put my thumb in my armpits and say what a good boy am I.
Continue to listen to more of this from Pastor John Piper in the video.