↻ Updated: February 18th, 2020 by JPE
Our Christian Hope is that We are Saved Eternally
God said that we are old outwardly only, or that outwardly we are wasting away, getting older, weaker. Inwardly, however, we are renewed day by day. Wrote the Apostle Paul in 2 Corinthians 4:16: “Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day.” We are saved eternally because of our faith in Jesus Christ, God the Son. It is our Christian hope that is pointed out daily in our walk with God through the inner witness of Christ’s Spirit inside of us. Saved eternally, also known as the eternal security of believers, is a Bible teaching that is sown in our hearts since God “also sealed us and gave us the Spirit in our hearts as a pledge” or guarantee that we are His (saved from sin and the wrath of God!) forever.
READ MORE: Repentance and Faith Required to be Saved
What is Our Assurance that We are Saved Eternally as Christians?
We are saved eternally as proven and guaranteed by Christ’s resurrection from the dead. Secondly, our Lord’s promise in John 10:28 stands: “I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand.” The apostle John also taught about the certainty of life beyond this world through a working faith in Christ. He wrote in 1 John 5:13:
Saved eternally is a teaching that is applicable only to real Christians. Observe John’s statement: “. . . have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God.”
Questionable Doctrine that We are Saved Eternally Even Without Our Human Assistance?
The most popular teaching that we hear people talk about is saved conditionally, ” not saved eternally. Conditional salvation means that one is saved only under certain conditions. Sinning Christians don’t deserve to have any assurance at all of forgiveness and life in heaven forever. Revelation 2:4-5 is one particular verse used by the enemies of the doctrine concerning the eternal salvation of the born-again believer of Christ. Observe this verse:
“Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken the love you had at first. Consider how far you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first. If you do not repent, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place.”
“If you won’t repent,” someone said, “you will be removed. Therefore, salvation is without assurance.”
Firstly, the above verse from Revelation 2:4-5 was intended for the church, not the members’ individual salvation. Secondly, what is removed is the “lampstand,” perhaps referring to the spiritual powerlessness and lack of the unction of the church’s leaders. The result is closure or abandonment of the work. It is happening locally, right?
Read More: Free Salvation Offered by Christ
Since it is impossible for God to contradict Himself (see John 10:27-30, among other verses), it is, therefore, appropriate to interpret contrasting scriptures prayerfully and in the spirit of pushing for the glory of Christ. A sound doctrine is always Christ-glorifying!
God is not a man, that He should lie,
Nor a son of man, that He should repent;
Has He said, and will He not do it?
Or has He spoken, and will He not make it good? (Num. 23:19)
READ MORE: Be Saved Through Faith in Jesus Christ
The Consistency of the Biblical Doctrine of Salvation and Eternal Assurance or Security
In Ephesians 2:8-9, the Apostle Paul wrote that “For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.” This verse thoroughly answers the objections of the Arminians or those who are against the teaching that a born-again Christian is saved eternally and assuredly. Paul said that salvation from God’s wrath is Christ-given and not a result of some good works.
READ MORE: Hyper-Calvinism Rejected
For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.” (John 3:16, NASB)
⟶ We Find from the Gospel According to John that in Christ We are Saved Eternally
The following verses mostly came from the lips of Christ Jesus Himself. Observe how the doctrine on eternal salvation from hell and the wrath of God is taught by our Lord.
▸ John 1:12 (To receive and believe Christ are the twin requirement to be saved eternally.): “But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God.”
▸ John 3:16 (To have eternal salvation, real faith in Christ is the only requirement.): ““For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.”
▸ John 5:28-29 (The two resurrections are taught in the Holy Scriptures.): “Do not marvel at this, for an hour is coming when all who are in the tombs will hear his voice and come out, those who have done good to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil to the resurrection of judgment.”
▸ John 6:29 (Believe in Christ Jesus to be saved forever.): Jesus answered them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in him whom he has sent.”
▸ John 6:39-40 (To live forever in heaven we need to (1) look on the Son, and (2) believe on Him.): “And this is the will of him who sent me, that I should lose nothing of all that he has given me, but raise it up on the last day. For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.”
▸ John 6:50-71 (To live forever is to eat the Bread (meaning to accept and believe) who is Christ.): “This is the bread that comes down from heaven, so that one may eat of it and not die. I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. And the bread that I will give for the life of the world is my flesh.” The Jews then disputed among themselves, saying, “How can this man give us his flesh to eat?” So Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. Whoever feeds on my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.”
▸ John 6:66-71 (Christ is the Eternal Life, not our good works.): “After this many of his disciples turned back and no longer walked with him. So Jesus said to the Twelve, “Do you want to go away as well?” Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life, and we have believed, and have come to know, that you are the Holy One of God.” Jesus answered them, “Did I not choose you, the Twelve? And yet one of you is a devil.”
▸ John 14:23 (A saved person keeps Christ’s word. He walks with Him.): “Jesus answered him, ‘If anyone loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him.'”
▸ John 17:3 (A real knowledge of God is impossible without first accepting Christ as Savior in one’s heart.): “And this is eternal life, that they know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.”
▸ John 20:19-24 (Believe that Jesus Christ is not just Son of God, but God the Son.): “On the evening of that day, the first day of the week, the doors being locked where the disciples were for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.” When he had said this, he showed them his hands and his side. Then the disciples were glad when they saw the Lord. Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, even so I am sending you.” And when he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, ‘Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you withhold forgiveness from any, it is withheld.’”
READ MORE: Human Responsility to Believe in Christ
⟶ We are Saved Forever According to the Gospel of Matthew
▸ Matthew 7:13-14 (Doing good works as a means to be saved eternally is not the “narrow road” mention here. Why because with or without theology, every person believes in good works as the way to reach God in heaven.): ““Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few.”
▸ Matthew 7:21-23 (Note that we are saved eternally not because of doing something for the church like prophesying, mighty works, etc.): “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’”
▸ Matthew 25:46 (Christ taught two “eternals,” viz.: eternal life in heaven and eternal damnation in hell.): “And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”
▸ Matthew 10:28-29 (Salvation is about the Savior’s power to save, not our power to save ourselves from the wrath of God.): “And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell. Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father.”
▸ Matthew 25:31-46 (Take note that in these verses our relationship with Christ is the one thing that matters with God.): “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne. Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. And he will place the sheep on his right, but the goats on the left. Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me.”
⟶ We are Saved Eternally and Assuredly According to the Book of Luke
▸ Luke 23:43 (The thief was saved because he believed in Jesus Christ without the opportunity to do any form of good work.): “And he said to him, “Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise.”
▸ Luke 14:14 (Immortality and the resurrection from the dead are Bible teachings.): “And you will be blessed, because they cannot repay you. For you will be repaid at the resurrection of the just.”
▸ Luke 20:35-36 (Christ’s followers will become like the angels of God.): “But those who are considered worthy to attain to that age and to the resurrection from the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage, for they cannot die anymore, because they are equal to angels and are sons of God, being sons of the resurrection.”
⟶ The Apostle Peter on the Assurance of Salvation
▸ 2 Peter 3:9 (God’s interest is for us to be saved forever and be with Him.): “The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.”
▸ 1 Peter 3:18 (Christ is our Savior, our Hope to live forever in heaven.): “For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God.”
⟶ The Book of Acts also Teaches about Our Eternal Salvation
▸ Acts 24:15 (The resurrection of the unjust proves the horrifying nature of God’s wrath–an imperfect body given for eternal punishing?): “Having a hope in God, which these men themselves accept, that there will be a resurrection of both the just and the unjust.”
▸ Acts 4:12 (Jesus Christ is our only Savior): “And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”
⟶ We are Saved Eternally and Assuredly According to the Apostle Paul
▸ Romans 4:3-5 (Salvation from hell is achieved only by faith in Christ Jesus.): “For what does the Scripture say? “Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness.” Now to the one who works, his wages are not counted as a gift but as his due. And to the one who does not work but believes in him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted as righteousness.”
▸ Romans 6:23 (Salvation is a gift.): “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
▸ Romans 8:38-39 (We have assurance of salvation as real followers of Christ.): “For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
▸ Romans 10:13 (Jesus Christ is our only Savior.): “For ‘everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.’”
▸ Ephesians 2:8-9 (We are saved by grace through faith.): “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.
▸ 2 Corinthians 5:17 (Salvation is experienced.): “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.”
▸ Galatians 2:15-16 (We are justified or made righteous only by faith in Jesus Christ.): “We ourselves are Jews by birth and not Gentile sinners; yet we know that a person is not justified by works of the law but through faith in Jesus Christ, so we also have believed in Christ Jesus, in order to be justified by faith in Christ and not by works of the law, because by works of the law no one will be justified.”
▸ Galatians 3:10-11 (Good works cannot save a soul from hell.): “For all who rely on works of the law are under a curse; for it is written, ‘Cursed be everyone who does not abide by all things written in the Book of the Law, and do them.” Now it is evident that no one is justified before God by the law, for “The righteous shall live by faith.’”
▸ Galatians 3:5-14 (Biblical righteousness is based on faith.): “Does he who supplies the Spirit to you and works miracles among you do so by works of the law, or by hearing with faith— just as Abraham “believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness”? Know then that it is those of faith who are the sons of Abraham. And the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel beforehand to Abraham, saying, “In you shall all the nations be blessed.” So then, those who are of faith are blessed along with Abraham, the man of faith.”
▸ Galatians 3:1-3 (Receive the Holy Spirit by faith.): “O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you? It was before your eyes that Jesus Christ was publicly portrayed as crucified. Let me ask you only this: Did you receive the Spirit by works of the law or by hearing with faith? Are you so foolish? Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the flesh?”
▸ Galatians 3:24-26 (Salvation by faith plus good works? Such doctrine is not biblical! We are saved eternally by faith in Jesus Christ alone.): “So then, the law was our guardian until Christ came, in order that we might be justified by faith. But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian, for in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith.”
▸ 2 Thessalonians 1:9 (The future of the Christless generations in hell.): “They will suffer the punishment of eternal destruction, away from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his might.”
▸ Philippians 3:21 (We will given a glorious body in heaven.): “Who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body, by the power that enables him even to subject all things to himself.”
⟶ Teachings from Revelation on the Salvation of the Soul from Hell
▸ Revelation 1:18 (Note that Jesus Christ is the Giver of Eternal Life.): “And the living one. I died, and behold I am alive forevermore, and I have the keys of Death and Hades.”
▸ Revelation 20:4-6 (There will be resurrection. We are saved eternally.): “Then I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was given to them. And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of their testimony of Jesus and because of the word of God, and those who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received the mark on their forehead and on their hand; and they came to life and reigned with Christ for a thousand years. The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were completed. This is the first resurrection. Blessed and holy is the one who has a part in the first resurrection; over these the second death has no power, but they will be priests of God and of Christ and will reign with Him for a thousand years.”
▸ Revelation 2:11 (There is eternal life and eternal death also known as the second death.): “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. The one who conquers will not be hurt by the second death.”
▸ Revelation 20:4 (John saw the souls who were beheaded because of faith in Jesus Christ. Where is salvation by good works in the verse?): “Then I saw thrones, and seated on them were those to whom the authority to judge was committed. Also I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for the testimony of Jesus and for the word of God, and those who had not worshiped the beast or its image and had not received its mark on their foreheads or their hands. They came to life and reigned with Christ for a thousand years.”
▸ Revelation 20:6 (The giving of eternal life to those who believe in Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord has a purpose: to reign with Christ.): “Blessed and holy is the one who shares in the first resurrection! Over such the second death has no power, but they will be priests of God and of Christ, and they will reign with him for a thousand years.”
▸ Revelation 20:14 (There is eternal life in heaven and also eternal damnation in hell.): “Then Death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire.”
▸ Revelation 21:8 (Cowardice to believe in Jesus Christ is a reason for one to go to hell. Where is good works and conditional salvation? We are saved eternally by faith alone.): “But as for the cowardly, the faithless, the detestable, as for murderers, the sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars, their portion will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur, which is the second death.”