“Is not the gospel its own sign and wonder? Is not this a miracle of miracles, that ‘God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish’? Surely that precious word, ‘Whosoever will, let him come and take the water of life freely’ and that solemn promise, ‘Him that cometh unto Me, I will in no wise cast out,’ are better than signs and wonders! A truthful Saviour ought to be believed. He is truth itself. Why will you ask proof of the veracity of One who cannot lie?” ― Charles H. Spurgeon
The Gospel is not a mere message of deliverance, but a canon of conduct; it is not a theology to be accepted, but it is ethics to be lived. It is not to be believed only, but it is to be taken into life as a guide. (Alexander MacLaren)
If anyone believes that Jesus Christ exists that person’s faith is still incomplete, if he or she does not believe in the resurrection of Jesus Christ. This will be a great hindrance to that person receiving salvation.
Those who say he was never crucified by citing any reason or religious authority, are not saved either. For the resurrection to happen there would need to be a death. Not any type of death but that by crucifixion. Again, there is no resurrection of Jesus Christ without the crucifixion. Jesus himself spoke of his death and resurrection as mentioned in the below verses:
- And Jesus began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes and be killed, and after three days rise again. (Mark 8:31)
- saying, “The Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised.” (Luke 9:22)
The crucifixion was foretold in Psalm 22, of which here are the specific verses:
16 For dogs encompass me; a company of evildoers encircles me; they have pierced my hands and feet— 17 I can count all my bones—they stare and gloat over me;18 they divide my garments among them, and for my clothing they cast lots. (Psalm 22:16-18)
This prophecy about Jesus was fulfilled and mention in the Gospel of Matthew (Chapter 19:23-24)
23 When the soldiers had crucified Jesus, they took his garments and divided them into four parts, one part for each soldier; also his tunic. But the tunic was seamless, woven in one piece from top to bottom, 24 so they said to one another, “Let us not tear it, but cast lots for it to see whose it shall be.” This was to fulfill the Scripture which says,“They divided my garments among them, and for my clothing they cast lots.”
The following verses show that one must confess and believe that God raised Jesus from the dead, to receive salvation:
5 For Moses writes about the righteousness that is based on the law, that the person who does the commandments shall live by them. 6 But the righteousness based on faith says, “Do not say in your heart, ‘Who will ascend into heaven?’” (that is, to bring Christ down) 7 “or ‘Who will descend into the abyss?’” (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead). 8 But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith that we proclaim); 9 because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. (Romans 10:5-10)
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, (1 Peter 1:3)
14 Now after John was arrested, Jesus came into Galilee, proclaiming the gospel of God, 15 and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.” (Mark 1:14-15)
Jesus said “repent and believe in the Gospel”. One needs to repent of sin, because it’s the command of Jesus. Now, believing in the Gospel includes believing in the atoning death of Jesus Christ and also his glorious resurrection. Those who don’t believe in the death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus will not be saved, unless they repent of their unbelief and believe in the Gospel completely. And by this I mean they believe that God raised Jesus from the dead.
“Jesus once said that Satan was a thief. Satan does not steal money, for he knows that money has no eternal value. He steals only what has eternal value – primarily the souls of men. Jesus said further that after Satan steals, he kills and destroys what he has stolen (John 10:10). In contrast, Jesus went on to say, that He Himself had come to give us abundant life. Isn’t it amazing that in a world of 5,500 million people, more than 99% of the people prefer to believe Satan’s lies and to obey him rather than believe in Jesus Christ and obey the Word of God. There we can see what a tremendous work Satan has done in convincing people that it is not a serious matter to disobey God’s Word.” (Zac Poonen)
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You salvation which comes from Jesus is highly valuable. This will keep you from going to hell when you die and away from eternal judgement at the Final Judgement. With salvation they joys and security of eternal life in Christ are promised. We must take care that we always have our salvation from God. So here’s a question that pertains to this; can salvation be lost?
A quick and direct answer to this is that salvation can be lost if you give up on Jesus and the Gospel. One can also say that if a person was a Christian but renounced the faith later and then became an atheist then he will automatically lose his salvation. It’s that simple. Now, I know that for a question like this, it’s important to know why salvation can be lost. Also some may wonder what does it mean by ‘give up’ in this case. I’d suggest that you read the following as objectively as you can to understand why a person may lose his/her salvation.
An uneasy question indeed!
This question that makes people very uneasy in church, office and school. The fear of eternal damnation is so compelling that people try to avoid this topic when at dinner at home or at a church picnic. They prefer if the preacher is preaching about dangers of being in sin to a general audience instead of smaller groups or one on one.
If you don’t ignore physical safety then why ignore spiritual security?
When it comes to your physical safety, you know there are rules and principles to be followed. You don’t fiddle with the law of gravity but take due precautions when going in an aircraft. Small babies by instinct scream when they see a vicious snake around and so alert their parents. If you see a landmine its unwise to step on it even if your captain says to tap it, you’d rather choose to disobey him and throw a stone on it from (real) far away to show him that is dangerous. So if we take care of our physical safety how much more must be aware of everything related to our spiritual security in this life and the life to come?
Beware of the bandwagon effect
Then as usual you have the denominational bandwagon effect in which legalistic people are of the opinion that if you follow all their rules you are saved but if you do not, then you’re not going to heaven. Also, there is the permissive crowd which has a feeling that everybody will go to heaven if they say the sinners prayer no matter how they behave later. It’s not wise to depend on someone’s feelings or opinions when it comes to salvation. You need to have the facts which prove themselves true in every situation and every time. This is a case of reality and not wishful thinking. No wonder you need to know that the Bible says about salvation and losing salvation.
To understand salvation lets read the below scripture verses. I’ve put an explanation in italics, where necessary.
- For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. (John 3:16)
- Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life. He does not come into judgment, but has passed from death to life. (John 5:24) (‘my word’ means the Gospel which also includes repentance of sins)
- Peter said to them, “Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. (Acts 2:38)
- and after he brought them out, he said, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” They said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household.” (Acts 16:30-31)
- For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. (Romans 10:13)
- If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us [our] sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. (1 John 1:8-9)
- Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Spirit (Titus 3:5) (It’s Jesus who saves us and not our good works)
To get a clear picture of how a person can lose salvation you can refer to the following scripture verses. Lots of verses here, so you may like to slow down a bit, when reading them:
- Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God. (John 3:18)
- “Why do you call me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do what I tell you? (Luke 6:46)
- “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 7:21-23)
- For false christs and false prophets will arise and perform great signs and wonders, so as to lead astray, if possible, even the elect. (Matthew 24:24)
- He will render to each one according to his works: to those who by patience in well-doing seek for glory and honor and immortality, he will give eternal life; but for those who are self-seeking and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, there will be wrath and fury. (Romans 2:6-8) (here ‘patience in well-doing’ means to continue to believe in Jesus’ work of salvation for them)
- Don’t you realize that in a race everyone runs, but only one person gets the prize? So run to win! All athletes are disciplined in their training. They do it to win a prize that will fade away, but we do it for an eternal prize. So I run with purpose in every step. I am not just shadowboxing. I discipline my body like an athlete, training it to do what it should. Otherwise, I fear that after preaching to others I myself might be disqualified. (1 Corinthians 9:24-27)
- But the Lord said to Moses, “Whoever has sinned against me, I will blot out of my book. (Exodus 32:33)
- And if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away his share in the tree of life and in the holy city, which are described in this book. (Revelation 22:19)
- The saying is trustworthy, for: If we have died with him, we will also live with him; if we endure, we will also reign with him; if we deny him, he also will deny us (2 Timothy 2:11-12)
- For if we go on sinning deliberately after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a fearful expectation of judgment, and a fury of fire that will consume the adversaries. Anyone who has set aside the law of Moses dies without mercy on the evidence of two or three witnesses. (Hebrews 10:26-28)
- And by this we know that we have come to know him, if we keep his commandments. Whoever says “I know him” but does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him (1 John 2:3-4)
- But when a righteous person turns away from his righteousness and does injustice and does the same abominations that the wicked person does, shall he live? None of the righteous deeds that he has done shall be remembered; for the treachery of which he is guilty and the sin he has committed, for them he shall die. “Yet you say, ‘The way of the Lord is not just.’ Hear now, O house of Israel: Is my way not just? Is it not your ways that are not just? When a righteous person turns away from his righteousness and does injustice, he shall die for it; for the injustice that he has done he shall die. (Ezekiel 18:24-26) (in context of the Gospel, this would indicate any person who turns away from the Gospel is deemed a sinner)
And finally please consider:
Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him. (John 3:36)
So by this we must have great regard of the salvation which comes to us from Jesus and never take it lightly. If you have sinned, there is hope. Simply repent of your sins and unbelief and choose to follow Jesus again.
As a Christian, one must always regard the New Covenant with great respect. For it was founded by the shedding of Jesus Christ in atonement for sins of the whole world. Lets first reflect on the following two scriptures:
- For the Son of man came to seek and to save that which was lost. (Luke 19:10)
- The one who commits sin is of the Devil, for the Devil has sinned from the beginning. The Son of God was revealed for this purpose: to destroy the Devil’s works. (1 John 3:8)
Adam and Eve sinned against God and therefore lost God’s friendship and favor. Death entered by sin into the human race. The main work of the Devil (by his own choice against God’s will) on earth is to make man who was created in the image and likeness of God into the lowest spiritually dead person he can and then die and suffer in hell.
God knew that man by himself could not restore the lost oneness and fellowship with God. So he sent his only begotten Son Jesus to live a human existence to redeem mankind. That’s why Jesus called himself the Son of man. Because he was born of Mary the virgin who is also the descendant of David who descended from Adam. Jesus didn’t want to limit himself to only the Jews because the love of God is for the whole world too.
By identifying himself as the Son of Man he conveyed he is for everyone on earth. Now he came to destroy the Devil’s work of making man sinful and dead in spirit to God. He came to destroy the power of sin and death over man. He came to heal people and cast out demons. He came to restore man to God’s favor by his obedience, being obedient even to his death on the Cross for all.
Jesus gives true joy, hope and peace. Today you too can experience the salvation and hope of Jesus. You get this by believing in the New Covenant by the Blood of Jesus.
To take away the curse of death due to the sin of Adam and Eve, the Lord Jesus had to take that curse on himself and then himself become the curse and be cursed. The Bible explains this. When I was very young I used to wonder about a remarkable curse mentioned in the Bible. Here it is:
“If a man has committed a sin worthy of death and he is put to death, and you hang him on a tree, his corpse shall not hang all night on the tree, but you shall surely bury him on the same day (for he who is hanged is accursed of God), so that you do not defile your land which the LORD your God gives you as an inheritance. (Deuteronomy 21:22-23)
With this curse I would wonder, what is the purpose of cursing a person who is hanged on a tree when he is already dead by the hanging? I didn’t understand at all, until some years later I succeeded in reading the whole Bible word for word. I realized that this curse was destined to be used by God to take away every curse that could ever harm mankind. Here’s that amazing scripture verse that came alive to me:
Christ has redeemed us out of the curse of the law, having become a curse for us, (for it is written, Cursed [is] every one hanged upon a tree,) (Galatians 3:13)
When Jesus shed his blood on the cross, he was hanging on the cross made of a tree, hanging by the painful nails that were driven into his body. He then died on the cross taking away the curse of the law. By believing in this you are justified and purified.
For in the gospel the righteousness of God is revealed–a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: “The righteous will live by faith.” (Romans 1:17)
For he has made him, who knew no sin, to be sin for us; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. (2 Corinthians 5:21)
Here’s what Jesus said about the New Covenant which he formed by the shedding of His Blood on the Cross:
In the same way also Jesus took the cup, after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.” (1 Corinthians 11:25)
And when the hour came, he reclined at table, and the apostles with him. And he said to them, “I have earnestly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer. For I tell you I will not eat it until it is fulfilled in the kingdom of God.” And he took a cup, and when he had given thanks he said, “Take this, and divide it among yourselves. For I tell you that from now on I will not drink of the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes.” And he took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” And likewise the cup after they had eaten, saying, “This cup that is poured out for you is the new covenant in my blood. (Luke 22: 14-20)
Please realize the need to believe in the New Covenant. Lay down your burdens of sin and of life at the feet of Jesus. Believe in the complete work of Jesus which is to restore you unto God in this life and the next.
Here are a few select scriptures that you can reflect upon:
- Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah (Jeremiah 31:31)
- Thus says the Lord: “In a time of favor I have answered you; in a day of salvation I have helped you; I will keep you and give you as a covenant to the people, to establish the land, to apportion the desolate heritages, (Isaiah 49:8)
- “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 3:16)
- Jesus said, “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. (Matthew 5:17)
- Then Jesus said to them,“These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you, that everything written about me in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms must be fulfilled.”(Luke 24:44)
- And Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. (Acts 2:38)
- But as it is, Christ has obtained a ministry that is as much more excellent than the old as the covenant he mediates is better, since it is enacted on better promises. (Hebrews 8:6)
- In speaking of a new covenant, he makes the first one obsolete. And what is becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to vanish away. (Hebrews 8:13)
- Therefore he is the mediator of a new covenant, so that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance, since a death has occurred that redeems them from the transgressions committed under the first covenant. (Hebrews 9:15)
- Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. (2 Corinthians 5:17)