Response to Comments
In my last post, I wrapped-up the series on Eternal Security. As promised, I want to take a few minutes to respond to the comments made in the last several posts.
As a reminder, this series was inspired by my own quest to answer the question: Can I Lose My Salvation? I did my best to present both sides of the coin impartially. I spent a lot of time praying in addition to reading and researching Scripture, commentaries, study notes, dictionaries, theology books and other related material. In my last two posts, I answered the question by stating that theologically, I am a Calvi-minian and am in no fear of losing my own salvation. My responses are italicized.
Good morning, Donald;
Can a Christian lose salvation? First, the term Christian must be defined. A “Christian” is not a person who has said a prayer or walked down an aisle or been raised in a Christian family. While each of these things can be a part of the Christian experience, they are not what makes a Christian. A Christian is a person who has fully trusted in Jesus Christ as the only Savior and therefore possesses the Holy Spirit (John 3:16; Acts 16:31; Ephesians 2:8–9).
I don’t disagree! Trust and obey, there is no other way.
So, with this definition in mind, can a Christian lose salvation? It’s a crucially important question. Perhaps the best way to answer it is to examine what the Bible says occurs at salvation and to study what losing salvation would entail:(See: Can a Christian lose salvation? @ http://wp.me/p26QNa-3qg).
Michael, you have stated your position in your usual excellent manner. We obviously disagree on the issue of can a Christian as you’ve described above and in your post, turn his back on His Savior and walk away. I do believe it is possible by his own free will, but highly improbable by the working of the indwelling Ruach.
Secondly, we must look to the question of “Is it possible for a person’s name to be erased from the Book of Life?” First, Scripture is clear that a true believer is kept secure by the power of God, sealed for the day of redemption (Ephesians 4:30), and of all those whom the Father has given to the Son, He will lose none of them (John 6:39). The Lord Jesus Christ proclaimed, “I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand” (John 10:28-29b). Salvation is God’s work, not ours (Titus 3:5), and it is His power that keeps us.
If the “anyone” referred to in Revelation 22:19 are not believers, who are they? In other words, who might want to either add to or take away from the words of the Bible? (See: “Is it possible for a person’s name to be erased from the Book of Life?” @ http://wp.me/p26QNa-2dZ ).
Michael, I going to take a pass on this position as my next series will be a look at the End Times. I’ll examine this issue then.
And thirdly: We must answer the question “If our salvation is eternally secure, why does the Bible warn so strongly against apostasy?” The Bible teaches that everyone who is born again by the power of the Holy Spirit is saved forever. We receive the gift of eternal life (John 10:28), not temporary life. Someone who is born again (John 3:3) cannot be “unborn.” After being adopted into God’s family (Romans 8:15), we will not be kicked out. When God starts a work, He finishes it (Philippians 1:6). So, the child of God—the believer in Jesus Christ—is eternally secure in his salvation.
However, the Bible also contains some strong warnings against apostasy. These warnings have led some to doubt the doctrine of eternal security. After all, if we cannot lose our salvation, why are we warned against falling away from the Lord? (See: “If our salvation is eternally secure, why does the Bible warn so strongly against apostasy?” @ http://wp.me/p26QNa-2To ).
I think I laid out my position of Apostasy clearly in Eternal Security ~ Part 4 & 5. I stated above: I do believe it is possible by his own free will, but highly improbable by the working of the indwelling Ruach, for a believer to Apostatize.
I think it comes down to the extent of perseverance of the saints, Don. I know you lean towards even a saved believer being able to walk away from his salvation. I actually believe we might WANT to, and even intend to. I just don’t get on board with the idea that, no matter how much we might think we want to walk away, or plan to, that God will actually let us. I honestly think in that case He revokes our will and keeps us anyway. He loves us so much that He stops us from being stupid.
I’m not convinced that He revokes our will; but, by the indwelling of the Ruach it’s not a fight that I think I could win. It is that indwelling that I consciously rely on to keep me from doing the ultimate stupid.
Also, in Eternal Security ~ Part 23, Patrick from Serving Grace Ministries commented:
I think you [Wally and I] are both right. It would be ludicrous to believe that the God who draws all men unto Himself would let go easily. Also, notice that Hebrews 6:5 the author (who I believe to be Paul) is dealing with the issue of maturity in the things of God… those who have advanced beyond the elementary teachings of the Gospel but have flowed in the gifts of the Spirit.
Patrick, you’ll get no argument from me, except for the authorship of the Letter to the Messianic Jews (Hebrews).
And, Spaniard VIII from SPIRITUALMINEFIELD commented:
I disagree with Wally that God takes away our freewill, its unBiblical. I do agree with Wally that you cannot lose your salvation because Jesus plainly said so in John 10:28. Even though you have freewill, you will never choose to abandon Christ, its impossible. Why? Because through faith in Jesus we are born again, becoming a new man, not the same as the old one. Our soul becomes totally devoted to Jesus Christ. If we can lose our salvation, then we never had something that was eternal. Either we have it or we don’t. Thanks for the ping Son.
See my response above to Wally’s comment and the following.
Interestingly, over the last couple of days in my daily readings (both Scripture and devotionals) I have been seeing passages or comments that support the “once saved, always saved” credo of classical Calvinists. “He who wins the victory will, like them, be dressed in white clothing; and I will not blot his name out of the Book of Life; in fact, I will acknowledge him individually before My Father and before His angels.” ~ Revelation 3:5. I’m not there yet, but who knows what the future may hold. Regardless, I am convinced that I am saved and won’t be left behind.
I close with the following two quotes from devotions I have read in the last two days.
“So how does a branch keep from being pruned from the vine? If God is the divine gardener and we are the branches, how do we make sure that he doesn’t target us for trimming? How can we make sure that we survive the gardener’s shears? “Stay united with me, as I will with you — for just as the branch can’t put forth fruit by itself apart from the vine, so you can’t bear fruit apart from me” ~ John 15:4. According to Yeshua, the secret to growth is connection. The way we stay healthy is simply to stay attached. The formula for more fruit is to remain on the vine. To feed from its roots. To stay plugged into the source of all life.” 
“As God’s child, live today with the surety, hope, and courage that come from knowing that your standing before God is secure.” 
In my next post, I share about Hanukkah.
 Embracing Eternity: Living Each Day with a Heart Toward Heaven ~ December 16th.
 New Morning Mercies by Paul David Tripp ~ December 15th.