Doctrine of Eternal Security
JOH 11:25 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me will live even if he dies,1
As Christians, our greatest hope and confidence lies in the fact that at the moment of salvation we have eternal life. The indwelling of all three members of the Trinity, received at the moment of salvation, guarantees us eternal security. God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit indwell the believer’s body to guarantee that he cannot lose his salvation.
As the Lord said in the Gospel of Joh, we receive salvation by our decision to believe in the saving work of the Lord Jesus Christ on the cross as the Son of God.
JOH 6:28‑29 Therefore they said to Him, “What shall we do, so that we may work the works of God?” Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He has sent.”
Salvation is the result of a single non-meritorious act of faith on our part and relies totally upon the grace of God. We cannot do anything to earn or deserve it, nor can we do anything to lose it. Salvation is a grace gift from God through faith, EPH 2:8-9, 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 [any human effort to attain salvation, ref: Isaiah 64:6], so that no one may boast.
As believers, we fail miserably over and over again, often living worse than an unbeliever. But there is no sin we will ever commit that can undo the perfect salvation work of the Lord Jesus Christ on the cross, which means that we cannot lose our salvation, and once we are saved, we are always saved. Salvation is contingent only upon one’s belief in the work of Jesus Christ on the cross. Jesus Christ indwells the believer’s body for security, protection and a guarantee that the believer has eternal life. In fact, the moment that the believer dies, he is … absent from the body and…at home with the Lord, 2CO 5:8. The first person the believer will see in Heaven when he leaves his earthly body through physical death is the Lord Jesus Christ.
The Word of God is very clear on the subject of eternal security; unfortunately, many believers are ignorant of this very important doctrine and waste much of their time and energy performing a variety of works in an attempt to earn and keep their salvation. God desires that we know and understand the truth of eternal security, which will provide us with the foundation to live the spiritual life and become a winner in the predesigned plan of God. There is only one way to receive salvation and nothing we can do to lose it once we receive it.
EPH 4:30 Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by Whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.
The Greek word in this verse for sealed is sphragizo and it means to stamp with a signet or private mark for security or preservation. Once a believer is sealed by God the Holy Spirit, it can never be reversed or undone. Throughout the Bible this point is made crystal clear.
JOH 5:24 “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who hears My Word, and believes Him Who sent Me, has eternal life, and does not come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life.”
The first two words in this sentence are very important to understand. When the Lord says, “Truly, truly” in the Greek, this is known as a sentential participle, which emphasizes an important point of doctrine. These two words actually mean, for certain, without a doubt, or indeed. Whenever the Lord Jesus Christ says, “Amen, amen” or “Truly, truly”, it introduces a point of doctrine, a very vital truth of tremendous importance. The Lord Jesus Christ knew exactly what doctrinal principles Satan would attack, and “Truly, truly” is a warning that what was about to be said would inevitably be under attack by the kingdom of darkness. The phrase, “Truly, truly” or “Amen, amen” is used 25 times in the Bible, all found in the Gospel of Joh. Each time the phrase is used, it introduces a truth that is of the greatest importance, i.e., something we need to pay particular attention to.
For example, it is used in JOH 3:3 to introduce the importance of being born again: Jesus answered and said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.”
In JOH 5:19 it is used to introduce Our Lord's equality with God the Father: Therefore Jesus answered and was saying to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, unless [it is] something He sees the Father doing; for whatever the Father does, these things the Son also does in like manner.”
In JOH 6:26 it is used to warn us against false motivation: Jesus answered them and said, “Truly, truly, I say to you, you seek Me, not because you saw signs, but because you ate of the loaves and were filled.”
In JOH 8:34 it is used to warn us about the bondage of sin: Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is the slave of sin.”
In JOH 8:58 it is used to indicate the deity of the Lord Jesus Christ: Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was born, I am.”
In JOH 10:7 it is used to describe the only way of salvation through the Lord Jesus Christ: So Jesus said to them again, “Truly, truly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep.”
In JOH 12:24 it is used to bring out the importance of losing your self-life: “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.”
In JOH 16:23 it is used to describe the importance of prayer: “…Truly, truly, I say to you, if you ask the Father for anything in My name, He will give it to you.”
In JOH 5:24 it is used to describe eternal security: “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who hears My Word, and believes Him Who sent Me, has eternal life, and does not come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life.”
The phrase, “Truly, truly”, is emphasized because the kingdom of darkness attacks doctrine through distortion, with the intent of distracting the believer from advancing in the plan of God. Satan often does this by creating a counterfeit or false doctrine.
Notice in JOH 5:24 that it says, …does not come into judgment, …; it does not say ‘might not’, or ‘should not’ or ‘may not’, but emphatically, does not. In the original Greek, the verse is much clearer; it says, kai eis krisin ouk erchetai[and into judgment not comes]. The verb erchetai means to come or to arrive, and therefore, it is correctly translated in the New American Standard Bible as, does not come into judgment.
The word oukis an interesting word. Joseph Thayer writes that when you join ouk with any verb, it is used to strongly deny that what is being declared in the verb will ever happen to the subject of the sentence. The verb here is krisis, which indicates judgment. The subject is anyone who believes. Therefore, anyone who believes will never come into judgment! The judgment here is an eternal one, so we must conclude that once a person believes in the Lord Jesus Christ, he will never lose his salvation.
As ROM 8:1 states, Therefore there is now no condemnation [katakrima, or judgment, punishment, doom] for those who are in Christ Jesus. Those in Jesus Christ will never be judged or come into judgment - not ‘might not’, but ‘will not’.
JOH 5:24 “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who hears My Word, and believes Him who sent Me, has eternal life, and does not come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life.”
In the original Greek, the word erchomai, translated come in the present tense, means that the scenario is habitually true or keeps on being true. The middle voice indicates that someone else has done the work, and the one who believes benefits from it. The indicative mood indicates that the statement is dogmatic and absolutely true! In fact, with “Truly, truly” or “Amen, amen” at the beginning of this statement, it becomes blasphemous for any believer to even think that someone can lose their salvation! What it does not say is that you may hope to have eternal life, providing that you continue to be faithful, or if you perform some series of works, as some believe.
Notice the last phrase, "but has passed out of death into life." The word, but, is the subordinating conjunction alla, which can be translated because or on the other hand. What is meant by a subordinating conjunction? A subordinating conjunction determines the reason why the action of the main verb is true and it does so by setting up a contrast. The main verb here is, does not come into judgment, followed by the conjunction alla, but has passed out of death into life."
The reason that a believer can never be judged or lose his salvation is given with the word metabebeken,meaning to pass over from one place to another, to be totally removed, to totally depart. The perfect tense with an indicative mood is a dogmatic way of referring to eternal security. The moment one believes, he has already passed from death to life, and is not able to pass from life back to death, thereby losing his salvation. The Word of God is crystal clear on this; in JOH 5:24 the Lord Jesus Christ Himself declares that the moment an individual believes, he “has passed out of death into life.”
EPH 2:4-6 But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly [places] in Christ Jesus,
In EPH 2:6, Paul further explains that at the moment of faith in Christ, children of God are already seated with Him [Christ] in the heavenly [places] …
If even one believer lost his salvation, the Lord Jesus Christ would be a liar, and He will not have fulfilled His Father’s plan.
JOH 18:9 to fulfill the Word which He spoke, “Of those whom You have given Me I lost not one.”
JOH 17:11-12 “I am no longer in the world; and they themselves are in the world, and I come to You. Holy Father, keep them in Your name, which You have given Me, that they may be one even as We. While I was with them, I was keeping them in Your name which You have given Me; and I guarded them and not one of them perished but the son of perdition, so that the Scripture would be fulfilled.”
When the Lord Jesus Christ says, “ … not one of them perished but the son of perdition,” he is referring to Judas Iscariot, and not talking about his physical death, which hasn’t yet occurred, but, rather, his being doomed for eternity.
JOH 6:37 “All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will certainly not cast out.”
JOH 5:24 “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who hears My Word, and believes Him who sent Me [in other words, believes the Father’s testimony concerning the Son], has eternal life, and does not come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life.”
The grace gift of salvation is irreversible.
Now is the moment to be prepared for eternity by personal faith in Jesus Christ. Believers should live their life in the light of eternity, JOH 3:16, “ … that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.” Eternal life belongs to believers only, and is defined as the unbreakable relationship of the believer with the integrity of God - not the love of God - but the integrity of God. It is an unbreakable relationship because of who and what God is, in spite of Who and What we are.
ROM 11:29, for the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable, brings the concept of eternal security into focus. The moment we believed in the saving work of Jesus Christ on the cross, God, in His grace, gave us at least forty things that cannot be cancelled or taken away by anything or anyone … not even God Himself.
ROM 8:38-39 For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus Our Lord.
Believers are said to be kept and guarded by the power of God, 1Pe1:5, [For you] who are protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. The reason why so many believers do not understand that they are kept by the power of God and saved by the grace of God is that they do not know the thinking of God. God cannot and will not cancel or take back eternal life. This fact does not imply, however, that we personally will succeed as believers. Whether we fail in executing the predesigned plan of God for the Church-age and end up a spiritual loser or succeed in executing God’s plan and become an invisible hero depends entirely on our attitude toward Bible doctrine.
Eternal security and rebound are not a license to sin.
GAL 6:7 Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap.
Eternal security ensures us that we cannot lose our salvation; however, we can lose rewards and blessings! Additionally, rebound ensures us that we are forgiven of our sins at the moment we confess them, but it does not magically remove the consequences of our actions. For example, if we break the law and are caught, we are still saved, and if we name and cite the sin, we are forgiven, but we will still suffer the consequences of the established laws. Make no mistake … no one gets away with anything in the Supreme Court of Heaven.
Eternal security is taught in original Greek and Hebrew.
To fully comprehend eternal security, we must understand the indwelling of Christ, which is the actual guarantee of eternal security. We will note a few verses that dogmatically teach this from the inspired original languages of Scripture.
EPH 2:8 For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, the gift of God;
This verse starts out with two very important words concerning our subject of eternal security. The first one is the dative singular noun, chariti, which is the word for grace. This is where we get our English equivalent, charity. The second word is the genitive singular feminine noun, pisteous, which is translated, faith. The verse starts out, For by grace you have been saved through faith; this is written to the believer and looks back at the moment he believed in Christ. The subject is the believer, saved through non-meritorious faith in that which God’s grace provided. Grace is what God does for us, and not what we do for God; and what God does for us is permanent.
Next is what we call a periphrastic perfect tense, which is composed of two verbs: the perfect passive participle of sozo [saved] and the present active indicative of eimi [has been]. The periphrasis is carried over from the Attic Greek and indicates that the writer cannot get all the details into one verbal form. Therefore, he uses two verbal forms to provide a more forceful expression. Nothing is more forceful than the expression of eternal security for the believer as stated in this periphrastic perfect. The periphrasis is one of the most powerful and most forceful of all expressions in any language! In the Greek it is so strong and powerful that it has no loopholes or leaks of any kind. It indicates that we are tied into eternal life forever, simply by the few seconds it takes to believe in the salvation work of Christ on the cross.
The first verb is a perfect passive participle, sesomenoi, meaning salvation. The intensive perfect of sesomenoi emphasizes the present state from a past action. The present tense refers to the fact that the person is saved, while the past action refers to faith in Christ. This indicates the completion of an action at the moment of faith in Jesus Christ with an emphasis on the existing results; in other words, once saved, always saved.
Verbs in the passive voice are generally intransitive. In comparison, a transitive verb makes an incomplete affirmation and requires a direct object to complete its meaning. For example, in ACT 16:31, the word believe is a transitive verb: They said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved …” The direct object of believe is the Lord Jesus Christ. However, in our passage, EPH 2:8, there is no object. Therefore, the intransitive verb used here makes a complete affirmation of eternal security and does not require an object of the verb to complete its meaning.
For by grace you have been saved … The second finite verb, have been, is added for duration. It is the Greek word este, the present active indicative of eimi, which translates, have been. The gnomic present of eimi expresses a universal doctrine, i.e., eternal security. It expresses a doctrine or fact, an absolute truth, a state of condition that perpetually exists and will never be changed. The time element is remote, because the doctrine of eternal security is true at all times. A believer never loses his salvation, even for a second. This could also be called a static present because eternal security is a condition that perpetually exists.
For by grace you have been saved through faith; … Both charis [grace] and pistis [faith] are in the feminine gender. In addition, the demonstrative pronoun houtos, translated that, is in the neuter gender; therefore, houtos, the near demonstrative pronoun, refers to neither grace nor faith. The use of the neuter gender, which is the Greek way of saying, “and this”, refers to the entire idea of salvation. In other words, and that [salvation is] not of [from] yourselves …; mankind cannot do anything to achieve his own salvation.
On the other side of the words grace and faith, we do not have the feminine gender; instead, we have a break in the original Greek - the neuter gender of the immediate demonstrative pronoun houtos. We would have had a feminine gender if the words grace and faith were being referred to next specifically, which they are not. The word houtos is in the neuter gender because, although it does refer to grace and faith, it refers to them as part of salvation in general. What this all means is that the grace, faith, and salvation collectively are not of ourselves, but are, as EPH 2:8 teaches, the gift of God.
The word gift is the singular neuter noun, doron, which refers to something voluntarily transferred by one person to another without any compensation or obligation. This is the original Greek way of saying that by grace we have been saved through faith, and that the grace, the faith, and the salvation are all the gift of God. EPH 2:9 goes on to say, Not as a result of works, so that no one may boast. And the word, not, is the participle ouk that we noted earlier.
Remember what Joseph Thayer said about this word; when you join ouk with a verb, it is used to emphatically deny that what is being declared in the verb will ever happen to the subject of the sentence! In other words, there was never a time when anyone was saved by, or even pleased God with, any form of human works!
In the book of Acts, Chapter 16, the original language of the Koine Greek is also very clear concerning the work of salvation and eternal security.
ACT 16:25-31 But about midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns of praise to God, and the prisoners were listening to them; and suddenly there came a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison house were shaken; and immediately all the doors were opened and everyone’s chains were unfastened. When the jailer awoke and saw the prison doors opened, he drew his sword and was about to kill himself, supposing that the prisoners had escaped. But Paul cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Do not harm yourself, for we are all here!” And he called for lights and rushed in, and trembling with fear he fell down before Paul and Silas, 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, [this applies to] you and your household.”
In this passage, the jailer was not thinking of spiritual deliverance, but of physical deliverance. He is saying, in reality, how can I get out of this jam? However, although this man was preoccupied with physical deliverance, he had already been prepared by God the Holy Spirit for spiritual deliverance. The jailer, like many individuals, needed a tragedy to awaken his God-consciousness.
This is what we call crisis evangelism, which is often misunderstood and used to attack the character of God. But, for some people, disaster is the only way to wake them up. National and local disasters have always been effective soul-winning devices. And God may use any one of us as He used Paul, to be a light in the midst of a disaster. Many people will not give even one thought to God or to salvation until they are placed in the middle of a disaster; thus the principle of crisis evangelism.
The word, believe, in this passage, is the Greek verb pisteuo, which is from pisteuson, the Greek word meaning, system of perception. Perception is something that goes on constantly in the minds of normal, average people. The Bible teaches that all men have faith perception, or God-consciousness, to which the invitation to believe is given. There are three systems of perception: (1) rationalism, which is relying on reason or knowledge, (2) empiricism, relying on observation and experience, and (3) faith, the only non-meritorious system of perception, which is believing in something. It is the object of faith that has all merit, and the object of faith in ACT 16:31 is the Lord Jesus Christ. The emphasis in faith is always on the object. The object does the work and the object gets the credit, and this is totally compatible with the principle of grace. In grace, God does all the work and God gets all the credit, and man simply receives what God has provided.
This is why mankind’s greatest enemy is religion and legalism. Within religion and legalism lie total opposition to grace, and the promoting of man doing the work so that man gets the credit. Legalistic thinking may be as subtle as baptism, giving money in expectation of blessing, tithing, joining the church, repenting from or feeling sorry for sins, or even living morally, all of which entail some form of works.
In ACT 16:31, the word believe, or pisteuo, is an aorist tense. With an aorist tense being used, it means that at the exact point of time that you believe, God saves you. It is not a present tense, which would indicate that you have to keep on believing, or else you could lose your salvation. It is not only academic dishonesty, it is also blasphemous to tell people that they can lose their salvation, and then back it up by misquoting the original languages. In addition to the aorist tense, the word believe, or pisteuo, is an active voice, which disproves hyper-Calvinism and those who deny the existence of a free will. The active voice indicates that the subject produces the action of the verb, and that there is no violation of human volition. In addition, the imperative mood tells us that this is a command. In fact, it is the only way of salvation.
They said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, …. The phrase, will be saved, is the future passive indicative of the word sozo, referring to eternal salvation. The future tense is what is known as a logical future, which reveals the fact that once you believe you shall be saved. The passive voice receives the action of the verb, and the indicative mood indicates that this is a dogmatic statement that cannot be changed!
Following are additional passages indicating salvation in the passive voice and revealing the fact that mankind can do nothing for salvation, nor can he do anything from his own nature to please God after he has been saved:
Col 2:6 Therefore as you have received Christ Jesus the Lord, walk in Him.
JOH 3:17 “For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved [aorist passive subjective] through Him.”
JOH 5:34 “But the testimony which I receive is not from man, but I say these things so that you may be saved [aorist passive imperative].”
JOH 10:9 “I am the door; if anyone enters through Me, he will be saved [future passive indicative], and will go in and out and find pasture.”
JOH 12:47 “If anyone hears My sayings and does not keep them, I do not judge him; for I did not come to judge the world, but to save [aorist active subjective] the world.”
The following passages have the verb sozo [saved] in the passive voice, and reveal eternal security:
ACT 2:21 “And it shall be that everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
ACT 15:11 “But we believe that we are saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus, in the same way as they also are.”
ROM 5:9 Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath [of God] through Him.
ROM 10:9 [the word of faith which we are preaching,] that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved;
ROM 10:13 for “whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved,”
Because we are in union with Christ, nothing can separate us from our eternal salvation. This can also be referred to as the baptism of the Spirit rationale. Upon receiving the baptism of the Spirit at the point of faith in Christ, every believer in the Church-age is entered into union with Christ. This is called positional sanctification, meaning that every Church-age believer shares who and what Christ is. Jesus Christ is eternal life; therefore, being in union with him means we share his eternal life.
1JO 5:11-12 And the testimony is this, that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. He who has the Son has the [eternal] life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have the [eternal] life.
We also share Jesus Christ’s divine righteousness, 1CO 5:21, we are accepted in Christ forever, EPH 1:6, we share the destiny of Christ, EPH 1:5, we share the heirship of Christ, EPH 1:4, and we are sanctified in Christ, 1CO 1:2,30. He is the Son of God, and we share in His sonship, GAL 3:26; He is a king, and we share in His kingship, 1Pe1:11.
A Fortiori Rationale
One of the objectives of the Christian way of life is to arrive at a place where we think spiritually. Proper mental attitude will give the believer common sense and a sound mind concerning the things of God. For instance, in addressing the doctrine of eternal security, there is the common sense approach or logical approach. The logical approach is developed from two words in the book of Rom: a fortiori, or much more.
A fortiori is a Latin phrase meaning, with stronger reason. It is a system of logic that uses comparison. It is one conclusion compared with some other conclusion or recognized fact, inferred to be even more certain or inescapable than the two conclusions it combines. Simply put, let’s say I have the ability to run twenty miles. It then follows the principle of a fortiori that I also have the ability to run five miles. Or, if I can do 100 push-ups, it follows the principle of a fortiori that I can do ten. A fortiori concludes that something is true based on another conclusion which has already been established; that is, if I have the ability to do the greater, then logically, I have the ability to do the lesser.
A fortiori is also a system of argumentation or debate that takes an accepted fact, and by comparison, produces an inescapable fact and confident conclusion. Throughout the Word of God, there is a Greek phrase that illustrates the principle of a fortiori. The Greek polloi mallon is the indication of a fortiori, meaning much more. For example:
MAT 6:30 “But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is [alive] today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, will He not much more [clothe] you? You of little faith!”
ROM 5:6-9 For while we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will hardly die for a righteous man; though perhaps for the good man someone would dare even to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then [a fortiori], having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath [of God] through Him.
The principle of a fortiori logically states that if God is able to do something extremely difficult such as saving us, it only makes sense that He can do something much easier, such as keeping us saved! In addition, since God did the most for us when we were still His enemies, it stands to reason that He will do much more for us now that we are His children! To say that a believer can lose his salvation is to say that it takes more power to keep him saved then it took for God to save him, and that is blasphemous!
ROM 8:32 He Who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things?
Notice the phrase, freely give us all things. In one moment of time, at the point of salvation, God freely gave us all we would ever need to live the Christian way of life inside his predesigned plan. He does not give us things one at a time as they come up; He has already given it all to us the moment we believed in Christ.
Pertaining to our doctrine, a fortiori says in effect that if God did the greatest thing for us at salvation by not sparing His own Son, it follows logically that He can do less than the greatest thereafter, which is provide us with eternal security. There isn’t anything or anyone that can hinder blessings from the justice of God to the mature believer except the believer’s own negative volition. The believer’s capacity for blessing includes total awareness of security from the integrity of God. Therefore, no believer who rejects the doctrine of eternal security ever attains spiritual maturity. That believer never receives escrow blessings or eternal rewards from the justice of God. He does, however, still have eternal security, and he has not lost his salvation.
Two realities in life are eternal security and prosperity from the integrity of God. Eternal security is a reality that never changes; it is a result of the believer’s non-meritorious one-shot decision to believe in the person of Christ for salvation. Prosperity is a potential reality based on the believer’s attitude toward Bible doctrine, or the mind of Christ. In contrast, eternal security is not a potential reality; it always exists for both spiritual winner and spiritual loser.
If the greater has been given, which is justification, God will not withhold the lesser, deliverance from the Lake of Fire.
Having God's perfect righteousness ensures the believer that he will never be cast into the Lake of Fire or be judged at the last judgment. The wrath of God is not directed at His children.
1TH 5:9 For God has not destined us for wrath, but for obtaining salvation through Our Lord Jesus Christ.
If the believer is justified by the blood, or spiritual death, of Christ, it follows a fortiori that the believer will be delivered at the last judgment. Justification means having God’s perfect righteousness. With perfect righteousness, there is no way the believer can be at the last judgment or be cast into the eternal Lake of Fire. No one can take perfect righteousness from the believer, which is all that is required to go to Heaven.
There is also the a fortiori principle of reconciliation, which applies to the doctrine of eternal security, ROM 5:10, For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God through [by means of] the death of His Son, much more [a fortiori], having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life. If the greater benefit has been given, which is reconciliation, it stands to reason that the lesser, which is deliverance by His life, will not be withheld.
So what conclusions can we arrive at concerning a fortiori?
• The a fortiori rationale protects the believer from worry, MAT 6:30, “But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is [alive] today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, will He not much more [clothe] you? You of little faith!
• The a fortiori rationale protects the believer from judgment, ROM 5:9, Much more then, having now been justified by His blood [spiritual death], we shall be saved from the wrath [of God] through Him.
• The a fortiori rationale protects the believer from destruction, ROM 5:10, For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life.
• The a fortiori rationale protects the believer from spiritual poverty, ROM 5:15, But the free gift is not like the transgression. For if by the transgression of the one the many died, much more did the grace of God and the gift by the grace of the one Man, Jesus Christ, abound to the many.
• The a fortiori rationale gives the believer the opportunity to reign with the Lord Jesus Christ, ROM 5:17, For if by the transgression of the one, death reigned through the one, much more those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.
• The a fortiori rationale reveals that if the Lord treated His people a certain way under the Law, how much greater will He treat us under grace, 2Co3:9, For if the ministry of condemnation [the Mosaic Law] has glory, much more does the ministry of righteousness abound in glory. And in 2Co3:11, For if that which fades away with glory, much more that which remains in glory.
• The a fortiori rationale protects the believer from fear of death, PHI 1:23, But I am hard-pressed from both [directions], having the desire to depart and be with Christ, for [that] is very much better. The phrase, very much better, is polloi mallon, which means, much more.
• The a fortiori rationale of divine discipline or love from the Father is taught in HEB 12:9, Furthermore, we had earthly fathers to discipline us, and we respected them; shall we not much rather be subject to the Father of spirits, and live?
Essence of God Rationale
Because of the immutable, eternal, infinite attributes of God, He cannot cancel the salvation of any believer, regardless of whether that believer is a spiritual winner or loser.
Jude v. 24-25 Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, and to make you stand in the presence of His glory blameless with great joy, to the only God, Our Savior, through Jesus Christ Our Lord, [be] glory, majesty, dominion and authority, before all time and now and forever.
We do not keep ourselves from falling; God does so as a matter of grace. God has the ability to maintain the relationship with the believer that He alone started. The perfect integrity of God cannot be canceled by the failure or renunciation of any believer living on earth.
2TI 2:11-13 It is a trustworthy statement: For if we died with Him [and we have], we will also live with Him; if we endure [in suffering for blessing], we will also reign with Him [as mature believers]; if we deny Him, He also will deny us [escrow blessings and rewards]; If we are faithless [disbelieving, faithless], He remains faithful, for He cannot deny Himself.
God is sovereign.
In 2PE 3:9, God expresses His sovereignty in a marvelous way: …[The Lord] is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance [change of mind about Jesus Christ]. Once a person believes in the Lord Jesus Christ and is given eternal life, God will make sure that the believer is protected and supplied with all that he needs.
God is integrity and holiness.
There are two categories of divine integrity that make up the holiness of God: justice and righteousness. Justice is mankind's point of reference with God, and although it is true that God loves us, God's love is not our point of reference. God is perfectly just and fair; in fact, it is impossible for God to be unfair in the function of His justice. It is from His justice that He declares us righteous. God can do nothing for mankind that would compromise His integrity.
ROM 3:24 being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus;
ROM 5:1-2 Therefore, having been justified by faith we have peace with God through Our Lord Jesus Christ, through Whom also we have obtained our introduction by faith into this grace in which we stand …
ROM 5:9 Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath [of God] through Him.
ROM 8:30 And these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified.
God is wise, incorruptible, and perfectly righteous.
God is the perfect and fair judge, the one judge who has never rendered a wrong decision. God declares the believer perfectly righteous. Losing one’s salvation would indicate that the believer is not perfectly righteous, and that the justice of God made a wrong judicial decision as perfect judge. Since it is blasphemous to even suggest that God could make a wrong decision, we know that when God declares someone justified, there is absolutely no way that person could ever be declared unjust or lose his justification.
God also possesses eternal, unchangeable, and perfect righteousness, and all justice is administered from the perfect righteousness of God. This means that He is always perfectly right. Many passages tell us that behind God's justice and judgment is the other half of divine holiness, which is God's perfect and absolute righteousness. And this righteousness of God is available to any person who believes in Christ.
ROM 3:22 Even [the] righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all those who believe; for there is no distinction [between Jew and Gentile];
God always has perfect righteousness and He has given this perfect righteousness to us freely as a down payment on eternal security. There is nothing anyone can do to be sustained or blessed by the grace of God, because the grace of God comes from divine justice to His righteousness. God found a way to bless us as believers totally apart from any system of works, human merit, or Christian service. Part of that blessing is eternal security. Effective Christian service and works are a result of spiritual growth, never the means to achieve it.
What the righteousness of God rejects, the justice of God condemns. Therefore, for a believer to lose his salvation, the justice of God would have to condemn the righteousness of God that is in us, which is impossible!
What the righteousness of God accepts, the justice of God blesses. This is the reason for eternal security. We receive the righteousness of God at salvation, and from then on we receive logistical grace support blessing from God. At the moment of salvation through faith in Jesus Christ, the righteousness of God is imputed to each one of us. This means we can live with God forever because we are considered as good as God is, having His righteousness. This may sound like arrogance but it is not, since it is because of the righteousness of God imputed to us at the moment of salvation.
God is love.
The love that comes from the integrity of God is perfect love. God is omniscient, and therefore, divine love has perfect knowledge about everyone that it loves. This means that the day that you were born again and saved, God loved you personally with a love that knew about every single sin that you would ever commit the rest of your life. God knows every thought that every person ever had or ever will have throughout history. God's love doesn't stop and turn away because someone insults or blasphemes Him. Man does not have the power or ability to change God's love, because His love is perfect.
Although God foreknew human failure, He did not cancel His love for those who fail. God does not condone sin, but at the same time He doesn't stop loving the sinner. God does not condone legalism or human good, but he doesn't stop loving the legalist and the self-righteous person who is full of his own self-importance. God has never canceled His love for His creatures, even though his creatures do not always love Him. God is love, always has been love, and always will be love. We need to understand that God does not fall in love, nor is God's love ever corrupted, compromised, or bribed by human works. God's love does not increase or diminish, and it cannot be altered by our sin, failure, evil, legalism, self-righteous arrogance, or instability. God's love is never frustrated, disappointed, or distracted. God's love is not sustained by attraction, rapport, or by any category of human merit or works, nor by any system of worthiness.
God’s love cannot be “bought” with good behavior. God is not impressed by any form of human good, morality, self-righteousness, or any other system of Christian works performed by the believer. Divine love is only attracted to divine righteousness, because divine righteousness means incorruptible and perfect virtue. The believer possesses divine righteousness and therefore becomes the object of God's personal love. As unbelievers, we are spiritually dead and the recipients of God's impersonal love, which means that He loves us from His own integrity and virtue, based on His Divine character and not on our imperfect character. Once we believe in Christ and receive the imputation of divine righteousness, personal love gravitates to divine righteousness so that God loves us personally. This is another reason why we can never lose our salvation. Divine personal love is defined as divine love being attracted to divine righteousness. Each person of the Trinity possesses divine personal love, and each directs His personal love toward other persons in the Godhead who possess coequal and co-eternal divine righteousness. Since the Father's righteousness is imputed to the believer at the moment of salvation, and since the Son's righteousness is shared by the believer through the baptism of the Spirit, we as believers in the Church-age have a double portion of God's righteousness. This is part of being in the Royal Family of God!
Possession of divine righteousness means four things: (1) justification at the moment of salvation through faith in Jesus Christ; (2) the believer as the object of God’s personal love; (3) the believer being blessed and sustained by logistical grace support, which flows from the justice of God to the indwelling righteousness of God; and (4) eternal security for the believer.
God is omnipresence.
Although God fills space and time with his presence, He is not limited by it. God sustains life and gives it purpose and value. God is ever present. Omnipresence is the word that expresses the fact that Heaven is God's throne and the earth is God's footstool, Isaiah 66:1, Thus says the Lord, “Heaven is My throne and the earth is My footstool. Where then is a house you could build for Me?”
Even Heaven cannot contain God’s omnipresence because He is actually far, far greater than Heaven, 1KI 8:27, “But will God indeed dwell on the earth? Behold, Heaven and the highest heaven cannot contain You, how much less this house which I have built!”; ACT 17:24, “The God Who made the world and all things in it, since He is Lord of Heaven and earth, does not dwell in temples made with hands;”
The omnipresence of God guarantees us that He will fulfill His promises, MAT 28:20, “… and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” He is with us always, not only as long as we do something or hold up our end of the bargain, but ALWAYS, not because of us, but because of His character.
HEB 13:5 …for He Himself has said, “I will never desert you, nor will I ever forsake you.”
PSA 37:23-28 The steps of a man are established by the Lord, and He delights in his way. When he falls, he will not be hurled headlong, because the Lord is the One who holds his hand. I have been young and now I am old, yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken or his descendants begging bread. All day long he is gracious and lends, and his descendants are a blessing. Depart from evil and do good, so you will abide forever. For the Lord loves justice and does not forsake His godly ones; they are preserved forever, but the descendants of the wicked will be cut off.
God is omniscience and knowledge.
There never was a time in all of eternity past when God did not know everything about each one of us. Every thought each of us would ever have, every motive that would be formed from those thoughts, every decision we would make from thought or lack of thought, and every resultant action was known by God in eternity past. We may be surprised over something we do but God is never surprised.
All of God’s knowledge is simultaneous, and this is a very important principle. There never was a time when God did not know everything. This includes every sin that we would ever commit after the day of our salvation. God knows everything about us that is knowable, and every thought we ever had or will have, along with every decision, motive and action. Time has no relevance to God’s knowledge. This means that at any given point of time the future is as well know to Him as the past.
Man’s past, present and future failures have no effect on the unchanging character and nature of God. God treats His creatures from perfect virtue and integrity and does not renege on any promise or provision that He has made for mankind. It is comforting to know that our so great salvation is secure and eternal strictly because of God’s unchangeable character, in spite of any failure on our part.
MAL 3:6 “For I, the Lord, do not change; therefore you, O sons of Jacob, are not consumed.”
God is omnipotent.
The word omnipotence is used to describe the unlimited power of God. It emphasizes the eternal supremacy of God’s power, plus the doctrinal fact that God is always in control. God has never lost control in all of human history nor has He ever lost control in prehistoric times during the angelic rebellion. As part of resolving the angelic conflict, God has created free will in man, so that man can choose to be either negative or positive toward God. As a result of his negative volition, man can end up out of control, but God still remains in control of everything.
1PE 1:5 [You] who are protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.
ISA 43:13 “Even from eternity I am He, and there is none who can deliver out of My hand; I act and who can reverse it?”
God is faithful.
The faithfulness of God is an anthropopathism, which is a human characteristic ascribed to God in Scripture as the basis for confidence in who and what God is.
God is faithful in rebound, 1 JOH 1:9, If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. The faithfulness of God has no exceptions in rebound, in that no sin is too bad or heinous or evil. And God’s faithfulness is not based on us being faithful, but on His characteristics alone, 2TI 2:13, If we are faithless, He remains faithful, for He cannot deny Himself. God always does the exact right thing on the basis of the work of Jesus Christ on the cross.
God is also faithful in logistical support, LAM 3:21-23, This I recall to my mind, therefore I have hope. The Lord’s lovingkindnesses indeed never cease, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness. We are daily sustained and supported by the faithfulness of God, regardless of whether we are carnal believers or spiritual ones, winners or losers.
God's faithfulness is based on election, 1CO 1:9, God is faithful, through Whom you were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ Our Lord. God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit indwell every believer. No member of the Trinity can deny Himself nor can He deny any other member of the Trinity. A believer can renounce his salvation and enter into any kind of blasphemy he wants to, but when we believe in Christ, God gives us forty grace gifts and we do not have the power to cancel them and neither will God!
God's faithfulness is stated in relationship to the prehistoric angelic conflict, 2TH 3:3, But the Lord is faithful, and He will strengthen and protect you from the evil. There are many ways that believers are protected, some we are not even aware of! As believers, there are many dangers surrounding us due to invisible warfare. Demon influence from false doctrines and the world’s system is all around, and until the believer learns how to battle these false doctrines by understanding and applying the truth of Bible doctrine, he is in danger of demon influence entering his right lobe and controlling his way of thinking.
These verses on the faithfulness of God are a reminder that regardless of how we fail or succeed, the issue in eternal security is not whether we are a winner or loser, but whether or not we are a believer. As a believer in Christ, God is always faithful to us, no matter what our spiritual condition may be. He cannot be faithless; it is contrary to His essence.
God is veracity.
Veracity means that God is absolute truth. The veracity of God points to all His promises, and one of His promises to the believer is the promise of eternal life!
TIT 1:2 In the hope of eternal life, which God, Who cannot lie, promised long ages ago,
HEB 6:17-18 In the same way God, desiring even more to show to the heirs of the promise the unchangeableness of His purpose, interposed with an oath, so that by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have taken refuge would have strong encouragement to take hold of the hope set before us.
NUM 23:19 “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?”
1JO 2:25 This is the promise, which He Himself made to us: eternal life.
Our relationship with God is based on His integrity, not ours.
The imputation of divine righteousness at the point of faith in Christ is the only means of justification. It is a believer’s eternal relationship with God, which is based on His integrity, not ours.
ROM 5:1-2 Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through Our Lord Jesus Christ, through Whom also we have obtained our introduction by faith into this grace in which we stand; and we exult in hope of the glory of God.
Our relationship with God does not depend on our integrity, our morality, our virtue or our success or failure. It depends entirely on His holiness and His integrity. The very concept of eternal security is based on the fact that the integrity of God is at stake, and that in itself is a comforting thought!
The Christian way of life is not morality; in fact, it is far above morality. Virtue is infinitely greater than morality, but virtue can only be produced by means of the filling of the Holy Spirit plus the perception, metabolization, and application of Bible doctrine. Morality can easily be produced by human self‑determination and the energy of the flesh, and this is why so many unbelievers appear to be more moral than the average believer. However, as believers, we stand in grace and not in merit, and it is God who provides the grace and our standing.
PSA 37:39 But the salvation of the righteous is from the Lord; He is their strength in time of trouble.
We as believers don't stand on our own strength. If we did, we would surely collapse. We stand in the grace of God, ROM 14:4: …To his own master he stands or falls; and he will stand, for the Lord is able to make him stand.
JOH 10:29 “My Father, Who has given [them] to me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch [them] out of the Father’s hand.
The integrity of God overrules man’s failures.
Man’s failures and weaknesses do not abolish the integrity of God or His strength. What this means is that lack of integrity in the believer cannot cancel or dissolve God’s integrity. Our failure to execute the predesigned plan of God does not cause us to lose our eternal salvation. Yet we seem to be more impressed with our own personal failures than we are with the integrity of God. Our problem is arrogance!
PSA 130:3 asks, If You, Lord, should mark iniquities, O Lord, who could stand? The answer, of course, is that no one could. However, the psalmist continues: But there is forgiveness with You, that You may be feared [respected], PSA 130:4.
It is important to understand that salvation through faith in Christ results in the believer receiving the very righteousness of God, and God’s own divine integrity. Our human righteousness and integrity are flawed and break down because of our old sin nature, but God’s imputed righteousness and integrity will never break down, no matter what.
The forty+ things received at the moment of faith in Christ cannot be canceled or nullified by any failure on our part after salvation. The integrity of God is infinitely greater than any failure of man, and as 2TI 2:12-13 states, If we endure [in suffering for blessing], we will also reign with Him [as mature believers]; if we deny Him [in time, by rejecting the predesigned plan of God], He also will deny us [rewards and escrow blessings]; If we are faithless [disbelieving], He remains faithful, for He cannot deny Himself. The perfect integrity of God cannot be cancelled by the failure or renunciation of any believer living on earth. The fact that we are unfaithful, and even losers in the predesigned plan of God, does not change God’s faithfulness. Every believer is indwelt by God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit from the moment of salvation. God cannot deny Himself, and since He indwells the believer, it stands to reason that He cannot deny the believer.
JOH 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten [uniquely born] Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.”
Note that no conditions are added to “shall not perish”. All we have to do is believe in Jesus Christ; nothing is added to faith. Faith alone in Christ alone equals eternal salvation, period! Salvation was designed by God before the foundation of the world, as the Word of God says:
1Pe1:20 For He was foreknown before the foundation of the world, but has appeared in these last times for the sake of you.”
ACT 2:23 [Jesus the Nazarene], delivered over by the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God, …
It is interesting to note that mankind did not even exist at the time salvation was provided! God did not work side by side with mankind in designing salvation, but rather designed salvation with man in mind.
Confidence in the glory of God begins at spiritual self-esteem.
Confidence in the glory of God is personal love for God the Father and occupation with the person of Jesus Christ. This begins at spiritual self-esteem. When a believer finally realizes completely and confidently that he cannot lose his salvation and that his eternal destiny relies entirely on the grace of God, he begins to reach spiritual self-esteem.
JOH 6:26-29 Jesus answered them and said, “Truly, truly, I say to you, you see Me, not because you saw signs, but because you ate of the loaves and were filled. Do not work for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you, for on Him the Father, God, has set His seal.” Therefore they said to Him, “What shall we do, so that we may work the works of God?” Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him Whom He has sent
We do nothing to gain salvation and we can do nothing to maintain it. It is the grace and work of God. And God never imputes His righteousness without putting it in a permanent container, which is our eternal security. We cannot lose our salvation, and we cannot lose what the integrity of God gives to us.
It is actually quite arrogant for someone to think that he has the ability to commit a sin so big, or do something so horrible, that his actions can cancel the perfect work of God! The truth is, we do not have the power or ability to cancel out or undo what God has done, no matter how evil we are.
The purpose of knowing the doctrine of eternal security isn’t for us to go out and raise hell! As stated earlier, it is not a license to sin, but rather, it is motivation for us to get to know our wonderful God, Who has freely and graciously provided fantastic blessings for us simply because of one non-meritorious decision to believe in Jesus Christ.
Family of God Rationale
GAL 3:26 For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.
Once we are born into a human family, we cannot be unborn and removed from that family. Once in the family of God, no believer can be removed from the family of God. The moment an individual believes in Jesus Christ, he is born into the family of God. More than that, believers in the Church-age are born into the Royal Family of God. Whether we succeed or fail is not the issue in eternal security. Some children of God turn out well and some don't, but they are all part of God's family. That is eternal security! Since all believers are members of the same family of God and cannot lose their family identity, they also have an heirship. You, as a believer, will always be an heir of God no matter how you fail or succeed in the Christian way of life.
ROM 8:16-17 The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ,…
GAL 4:7 Therefore you are no longer a slave, but a son; and if a son, then an heir through God.
The moment we believe in Christ, we enter into the family of God. It is for this reason that we call God “Father”. No other dispensation of believers prior to the Church-age ever referred to God as “Father”.
Scripture tells us that believers have an imperishable and undefiled inheritance that will never fade away, 1PE 1:3-5, Blessed be the God and Father of Our Lord Jesus Christ, Who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance imperishable and undefiled and [that] will not fade away, reserved in Heaven for you who are protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.
An inheritance is reserved in Heaven for all those who believe in Christ. The believer’s inheritance is protected by the power of God. We are heirs based on our personal faith in Christ as Son of God and Savior. The reality of our heirship is realized through our execution of the predesigned plan of God for our life, EPH 1:11, [In Him] also we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to His purpose Who works all things after the counsel of His will; TIT 3:7, So that being justified by His grace we would be made heirs according to hope of eternal life. Therefore, our attitude toward this inheritance should be one of thanksgiving, Col 1:12, [Joyously] giving thanks to the Father, Who has qualified us to share in the inheritance of the saints in Light.
Principle: The inheritance of the Church-age believer is based entirely on the decision and action of God in eternity past on behalf of the believer. It has NOTHING to do with our efforts.
EPH 1:13-14 In Him, you also, after listening to the message of truth, the Gospel of your salvation - having also believed, you were sealed in Him with the Holy Spirit of promise, Who is given as a pledge of our inheritance, with a view to the redemption of [God’s own] possession, to the praise of His glory. The Holy Spirit Himself has been given by God as a pledge [or down payment] of our inheritance!
Eternal Life of God Rationale
God does not possess life; rather, God is life: eternal life, infinite life, and spiritual life. The life of God is imputed to us through Jesus Christ as the only Savior.
JOH 6:47 “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes has eternal life.”
1JO 5:11-12 And the testimony is this, that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. He who has the Son has the life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have the life.
The imputation of eternal life is one of the forty things that God does for any person at the moment of faith in Jesus Christ. It is worth knowing about God's life and character, because He has found a way to share it with us, beginning with eternal life, and then by making this life on earth meaningful and wonderful. God is eternal life, and eternal life means that God is, always was, and always will be, and this is the life that He has given to us. Eternal life has no beginning and no end.
Whether in eternal life or everlasting torment, all souls go on forever.
Every individual who has ever lived on this earth has soul life, and this soul life will go on forever. God does not kill a soul once He creates it. Life is a precious gift from God and, … the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable, ROM 11:29. The question then becomes, will your soul spend life eternal with God or life everlasting apart from God? The issue determining this is what you think of Jesus Christ.
Unbelievers will experience what is referred to as a resurrection of judgment in JOH 5:29, at which time they will stand before God at the Great White Throne Judgment: and [all] will come forth; those who did the good to a resurrection of life, those who committed the evil to a resurrection of judgment. Because he has rejected the grace gift of salvation, the unbeliever will be judged on the basis of his works, and then cast into the Lake of Fire for all eternity. At the resurrection of judgment, there will be no human works acceptable to God for salvation. Only faith alone in Christ alone can save a soul from the Lake of Fire.
Everlasting life refers to a life that has a beginning but no end, while eternal life has neither beginning nor end. Eternal life is the very life of God. Once we are entered into union with Christ, we have His eternal life, which ensures our sharing eternity with Him.
Everlasting life refers to life for all eternity in the Lake of Fire, where the conscience doesn’t die. In the Lake of Fire, unbelievers will experience and feel pain in body and soul forever because they rejected the Lord Jesus Christ as Savior and Son of God. The unbeliever will spend eternity in a place described in LUK 16:28 as a place of torment.
Hell is a very real place.
The Lord Jesus Christ speaks more often in Scripture about the place we know as Hell than He does about the place we know as Heaven. Hell, or Hades, is described clearly in the Bible:
• It is a place where desire is never met, LUK 16:24.
• It is a place of unspeakable misery indicated by the term, eternal fire, MAT 25:41.
• It is a place where their worm [conscience] does not die, and the fire is not quenched, Mark 9:44.
• It is a place where the lake (which many believe to be a liquid form of lava) burns with fire and brimstone, REV 21:8.
• It is a bottomless pit, REV 9:2.
• It is a place of outer darkness, MAT 8:12.
• It is a place of unquenchable fire, LUK 3:17.
• It is a furnace of fire, MAT 13:42.
• It is a place of black darkness, Jud 13.
• It is a place of weeping and gnashing of teeth, MAT 13:42(b).
• It is a place where everyone will be salted with fire, MAR 9:49.
It is said about those suffering in the Lake of Fire, REV 14:11, “And the smoke of their torment goes up forever and ever; they have no rest day and night, …”
These descriptions of Hell, or the Lake of Fire, came from the lips of the Lord Jesus Christ himself. And such truth should make one realize the extreme importance of what 2CO 6:2 is saying: … Behold, now is “the acceptable time”, behold, now is “the day of salvation” -
Anthropomorphism is a theological term. It is derived from two Greek words: anthropos, meaning man and morphe, meaning form, therefore meaning in the form of man. An anthropomorphism ascribes to God a human characteristic or part of the human body that in reality God does not possess, using this to explain some divine policy in terms that man can relate to. In the Old Testament, one example can be found in PSA 37:24: When he falls [the believer’s failure], he will not be hurled headlong, because the Lord is the One Who holds his hand. Divine protection is illustrated in DEU 33:27, “The eternal God is a dwelling place, and underneath are the everlasting arms;… and in PSA 17:8, Keep me as the apple of the eye; hide me in the shadow of Your wings. It is also illustrated in 1PE 3:12, “For the eyes of the Lord are toward the righteous, and His ears attend to their prayer, but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.”
In the New Testament, an example of anthropomorphism is found in JOH 10:27-28, “My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand.” This verse tells us that we as believers are in the Lord’s grip forever; He never lets go.
Eternal security from the standpoint of the body metaphor.
In the Royal Family of God, Jesus Christ is said to be the head, and every believer is a member, or part, of His body, EPH 1:22; EPH 4:15, COL 1:8. Every member of the body of Christ is as useful and important to Him as another.
1CO 12:14-21 For the body is not one member, but many. If the foot says, “Because I am not a hand, I am not [a part] of the body,” it is not for this reason any less [a part] of the body. And if the ear says, “Because I am not an eye, I am not [a part] of the body,” it is not for this reason any the less [a part] of the body. If the whole body were an eye, where would the hearing be? If the whole were hearing, where would the sense of smell be? But now God has placed the members, each one of them, in the body, just as He desired. If they were all one member, where would the body be? But now there are many members, but one body. And the eye cannot say to the hand, “I have no need of you,” or again the head to the feet, “I have no need of you.”
Sealing Metaphor Rationale
EPH 1:13-14 In Him, you also, after listening to the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation [common grace] - having also believed [efficacious grace], you were sealed in Him with the Holy Spirit of promise, Who is given as a pledge of our inheritance, …
The signature guarantee of the Holy Spirit includes the following:
1. Sealing is the guarantee of the ministry of the Holy Spirit in common and efficacious grace [pre-salvation grace].
2. Sealing is the guarantee of eternal salvation at the moment of faith in Christ [salvation grace].
3. Sealing is the guarantee of eternal security in time [post-salvation grace].
4. Sealing is the guarantee of the believer’s portfolio of invisible assets in time [post-salvation grace].
EPH 4:30 Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by Whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.
We earlier saw the Greek word for sealed, which is sphragizo, which means to stamp with a signet or private mark for security or preservation. Remember that a seal attached to something signifies ownership. No matter what happens after salvation, God owns us and will deliver us at the point of ultimate sanctification, i.e., the Rapture of the Church. In the past, sealing was used for a business transaction or contract. In the spiritual realm, the sealing of the Holy Spirit is God’s stamp of approval signifying that the work of Christ on the cross for salvation is totally and completely finished based on the Word of God.
JOH 19:30 Therefore when Jesus had received the sour wine, He said, “It is finished!” And He bowed His head and gave up His spirit.
1CO 6:19-20 Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit Who is in you, Whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? For you have been bought with a price; therefore glorify God in your body.
As believers in the Church-age, we are His children, His sons, His heirs, royal priests, and ambassadors. In contrast, Old Testament saints were called such things as “the apple of His eye” in ZEC 2:8, “My own possession” in MAL 3:17, and a crown of beauty in ISA 62:3.
The sealing of God the Holy Spirit is a reminder that God loves us with an infinite love, and this love will never change. The seal cannot be broken. Anything to which God attaches His seal belongs to Him forever. Through the function of the integrity of God, believers are permanently owned by Him. The sealing of the Holy Spirit at salvation is a challenge to the believer to avoid carnality and reversionism and to keep going no matter how he fails.
2TI 2:19 Nevertheless, the firm foundation of God stands, having this seal, “The Lord knows those who are His” and “Everyone who names the name of the Lord is to abstain from wickedness”.
New Spiritual Species Rationale
Positional truth recognizes our position in Christ as a new spiritual species.
Positional truth recognizes the fact that every Church-age believer, at the moment of salvation, becomes a brand new creature - not an old creature given a second chance, but a brand new spiritual species. As a new creature, we are given access to the supernatural strength and power needed to live the Christian way of life. Understanding this fact gives us confidence regarding eternal security. We are to realize what we are and then live accordingly.
The believer is a new creature, a member of the Royal Family of God. He is part of the body of Christ, an heir to the throne, an ambassador for Christ, a royal priest. If all this is true, and it is, how foolish it is for the believer to think that he can undo what God has done. The doctrine of positional truth ensures absolute security concerning our salvation. And positional truth belongs to the carnal as well as the spiritual believer.
Positional truth simply means that God the Holy Spirit took us, at the moment of salvation, and entered us into union with Christ. Therefore, positional truth is not an experience, nor is it progressive. It is perfect at the moment of salvation, and is not related to human merit, but rather, it is the work of God the Holy Spirit, eternal in nature, and known only through Bible doctrine.
2Co5:17 Therefore if anyone [Church-age believer] is in Christ [and he is], [he is] a new creature [spiritual species]; the old things [position in Adam, spiritual death] passed away [lost their power]; behold, new things [invisible assets plus the predesigned plan of God] have come.
It is important to understand that the believer still possesses the old sin nature; however, it cannot function or control his life apart from his own consent and negative volition toward doctrine. The Greek words, kaine ktisis [new spiritual species] are the most startling words in the New Testament. The Church-age believer has not merely been renovated, fixed up or repaired. He has been made a brand new spiritual creature. And the reason for the new spiritual species is the extension or continuation of the great power demonstration of the hypostatic union into the Church-age. This extension ensures that the power given to Jesus Christ during the dispensation of the hypostatic union is also available to every Church-age believer, although, unfortunately, it is not used by many of them.
Some characteristics of the new spiritual species are as follows:
• The new spiritual species is created by the baptism of the Spirit at salvation. This positional sanctification constitutes the equal privilege of predestination.
• The new spiritual species is forever protecte