Can a person ‘lose’ their salvation?

Many people have taught that a person can “lose” his/her salvation. If people don’t do the right things, go the right places, and so forth, then they won’t be saved.

I agree that there are some fruits of the spirit that Christians will begin to show–not always right away–because they ARE saved. But to lose their salvation?

How big is what Jesus did for you? What He did for me was huge. Enormous. So big that it’s impossible to ‘lose’. I could reject it, perhaps, but if I am really saved, would I? And still, again, how could I lose something that big? I’ve lost my keys… I’ve even lost my car a couple of times amongst all the others in the parking lot. But those are so small in comparison. For me, to ‘lose’ my salvation would be akin to someone ‘losing’ the Empire State Building or the Great Wall of China. A person could get lost and miss it (though if they’d stop and ask for directions that might be a bit difficult, too), but they couldn’t ‘lose’ it. It’s too big to be lost.

How does salvation work, anyway? Is some poor angel trying to keep a score board in Heaven? Saved: IIIIIIII Lost IIIIIII… Oops! Another tally for lost. Nope, saved. Nah, lost again! Aha! Sav–los–save–ah, forget it. Silly human! I hardly think so. Nor should we go around day to day or moment by moment wondering if there’s anything we said or did that we should repent of “so if God came back this instant I’d be saved”. We should instead live conscious moment to moment and day to day that we want to do our best for Him, not so we can be saved, but just because we love Him and want to please Him (because He first loved us).

Nor does a person turn around one day and say, “oh, my! Where did my salvation go?!?! It was here a bit ago, I’m sure!” It’s not something that slips through your fingers and disappears slowly over time. Salvation doesn’t wear out or fade away. It doesn’t “leak” out of your life. You can neglect it, but God is still there, drawing you back. You can intentionally walk away from it, but you still remember where it is. You haven’t lost salvation in those cases, but instead have made a conscious decision to go in another direction. But does that make us “unsaved”? Can we undo what God’s already done for us? I believe in free choice, so I guess if someone rejected salvation, God wouldn’t force them to stay saved if they didn’t want to be. I’m just still not sure how anyone who was once saved could reject such a wonderful gift. Question it? Yes, I’ve been there. Doubt some things? Sure. Reject it? Maybe. Lose it? No. It’s too big to lose.

We see things ‘in time’. One moment to the next. But God is eternal. His vision stretches far beyond our own. We may FEEL closer or further from Him in a moment, but that doesnt’ mean He actually IS more or less distant.

He promised never to leave us or forsake us. Never. No matter what.

Part 2, a more Biblical perspective:


About thrugracealone

I'm a country girl raised city. I prefer open windows to AC, love a good thunderstorm, and enjoy hearing the owls and seeing lightning bugs. A bit old-fashioned, maybe, I can recognize many trees by name, resent elms and weeds, wish for a large garden and canning skills, and hope someday to downsize and get a few acres in the country. I am blessed with a terrific church, a good job, a sturdy house, two cats and a yard full of strawberries and mulberries in the right season. Some of my other favorite things to do are spoiling nieces and nephews, reading, swimming, biking, long walks, and blogging, of course. One of my favorite stories is creation. My abbreviated version goes like this: 1In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. 2Now the earth wasa formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters... And God moved... And God said... And it was very good. If God can speak to darkness, to an earth without form and void, and make something like this that we see everyday, and make it very good (and it was even better before the Fall!), He will surely make something wonderful out of the dark, void situations I sometimes find myself in. He has, and it's been very good. Two top posts: Can a Person Lose their Salvation? Baptism!

Posted on August 1, 2011, in Christianity. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. This post has been getting some hits in web searches lately. I want to clarify a few things from a more Biblical stance and will do so in “Can a person ‘lose’ salvation? Part 2”.

    No, a person can’t lose their salvation. My post above was a bit tongue in cheek about the term ‘lose’, but truly no, salvation can’t be lost. 1 Cor 3 says: 10By the grace God has given me, I laid a foundation as an expert builder, and someone else is building on it. But each one should be careful how he builds. 11For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12If any man builds on this foundation using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw, 13his work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each man’s work. 14If what he has built survives, he will receive his reward. 15If it is burned up, he will suffer loss; he himself will be saved, but only as one escaping through the flames.

    According to this, if your foundation is Jesus then you can build with the wrong materials (beliefs, teachings, actions?) on that foundation, but the foundation itself will remain sure. Your ‘building’ may be shaken, but Jesus can’t be shaken… so if you believe the wrong things or do the wrong things you may suffer loss, but you will still be saved (v15).

    I hope that makes sense.

    Another verse, and one that I discredited for a long time (I didn’t look it up and thought there was a different surrounding text!) is John 10:27My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. 28I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand. 29My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than alld; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand. 30I and the Father are one.” Look it up. He’s not just talking about the disciples!!!

    Romans 8 is my all time favorite: 38For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,m neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

    NOTHING can separate us from God. I used to hear people say, “yeah, nothing and no one but yourself!” But that’s not what the verse says. It gives a list and then says “nor anything else in all creation”. Wait, now. Stop and think. Are you a part of creation? If so, you are included in the NOTHING. God’s love is greater, is more powerful, than death, life, angels, demons, principalities, powers, the present, the future… and it’s more powerful and greater than you are, too. God loves you. Not for now, not because you…, not as long as you… Permanently. Eternally. Very, very much.

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