Search This Blog

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Can A Saved Person Become Lost?

It’s commonly taught that a Christian can’t fall from Grace or become lost!  Some doctrines go by these two popular titles “Once saved always saved!” and “The Eternal Security of the Saints”!  Are these teachings according to scripture?  If not, what are their origins?  TO THE BEST OF MY KNOWLEDGE these teachings trace back to John Calvin’s teachings!  OTHERWISE KNOWN AS “TULIP”!  He lived 1509-1564 and was the founder of the Presbyterians. 

I.  TULIP by: John Calvin with their "proof" texts. 

Total Depravity- We inherit Adam’s guilt & nature.  We are so lost that    we cannot chose God due to our depraved state so God “CHOOSES” who is saved!  Jer 17:9; Mark 7:21-23; Rom 3:10-12; 6:20; 1Cor 2:14; Eph. 2:3,15

Unconditional Salvation- God chooses those to be saved according to his will with no value of individual merit. God doesn't look into the future to see who will choose him, some are saved and others are not!  Eph 1:4-8; Rom 9:11,15,21

Limited Atonement- Jesus died only for the elect. Though Jesus’ sacrifice was sufficient for all, it was not efficacious for all. Jesus only bore the sins of the elect.  Matt 26:28; John 17:9; Acts 20:28; Eph 5:25-27; Is 53:12 

Irresistible Grace- When God calls his elect into salvation, they cannot resist. God offers to all people the gospel message. This is called the external call. But to the elect, God extends an internal call and it cannot be resisted. The Holy Spirit in the hearts & minds brings the elect to repentance & rebirth.  Rom 9:16; Phi 2:12-13; Jn 1:12-13; 6:28-29; Acts 13:48

Preservation of the Saints- You cannot lose your salvation. Because the Father has elected, the Son has redeemed, and the Holy Spirit has applied salvation, those thus saved are eternally secure. They are eternally secure in Christ.  Jn 6:47; 10:27-28; Rom 8:1; 1Cor 10:13; Phil. 1:6

Now that we understand where this teaching came from we can refute that teaching with sound scripture not taken out of context!

1Cor 10:1-12—Israel who was saved from Egypt as God’s people fell away.  Paul bases a lesson for Christians that we should not be like Israel.  LOOK @ VS 12.  “…take heed lest he fall.”  Does this not indicate that Christians can fall?

Heb 6:4-6—“if they fall away” This entire teaching is based on the fact that Christians can fall away.

2Ptr 3:16-18—This not only warns us not to FALL but to GROW in grace & knowledge which is essential to keep from falling.  We can’t GROW unless we study the word of God!

Heb 3:12,13—We are to beware of unbelief that would cause us to depart from God!  Is that not falling away?

These are the WARNINGS!  Now let’s look what the Bible teaches about those who fall.


1Cor 9:27—Paul understood that even though he preached to others he too must remain obedient.  “DISQUALIFIED” Paul’s reference to athletics here is that a competitor who failed to meet basic training requirements could not compete at all!  We must make sure we meet the basic requirements, in God's Word, to avoid disqualification!

Jn 15:6—ABIDE in Christ to be fruitful.  NOT ABIDING to be cast into the fire. Surely, this teaches that one in Christ must faithfully abide in order to be eternally saved!

Lk 9:62—“A plowman who looks back cuts a crooked furrow.”Looking back will get you the fate of Lot’s wife!!

Heb 10:26,27—Those who sin willfully after knowing the truth have nothing to look forward to but “terrifying expectation of judgment”!  Sounds like Christians can fall away & it doesn’t sound pretty!

Heb 10:38,39—God has no pleasure in him that SHRINKS BACK.  When we shrink we shrink bank to DESTRUCTION!

Rev 2:4,5—“FIRST LOVE” when you first come to Christ.  When you ”HAVE FALLEN” & don’t repent you will be removed from Christ!  (We are the “light of the world”(Mt 5:14)

Rev 3:15,16—Even those who have become LUKEWARM(not having departed from Christ’s service but not doing it wholeheartedly) will be VOMITED OUT!  

2Ptr 2:20,21This passage can no way be harmonized with the theory that a saved person can never be lost!  If some has ESCAPED THE DEFILEMENTS OF THE WORLD and then becomes ENTANGLED in them again the end is WORSE than the first.

Finally, I want to give you a few examples of this happening!

        A)  Acts 8:9-23  Simon of Samaria(Simon the Sorcerer)  Consider these things:
          1)  SIMON THE CHRISTIAN   V 13
                   Simon became a Christian and became obedient to the plan of salvation.  He then continued with Philip.
              2)  CAN’T BUY ME LOVE    VV 18,19       
                    God wants to be #1!  We can’t desire blessings so others will think we are great!
              3)  PETER’S RESPONSE   VV 20-23
                   a)  “May your money perish with you”  v20
                   b)  “Your heart is not right with God”   v21
                   c)  “Repent of this wickedness”   v22
                   d)  “You are in the gall of bitterness & in the bondage of iniquity”   v23   I SURE HOPE SIMON REPENTED!!!

        B)  2Tim 4:10   Demas
              1)  WHO DO YOU LOVE
                   He loved this present world!  He had once been a faithful laborer in the Gospel with Paul, his worldliness finally caused him to depart from the sacred work altogether!  Where can we find in scripture the fate of one who loves the world?  1Jn 2:15-17      

     Many who try to justify from the scriptures that a child of God can’t fall from grace say, “God will never leave his own.  He will not forsake one of his children.”  It is the PEOPLE depart from God and become lost!

Hear The Word-  Rom 10:17; Acts 4:4

We Must Believe or Have Faith-  Heb 11:6; Acts 16:31

We Must Repent-  Lk 13:3; Acts 17:30

We Must Confess Christ Before Others-  Mt 10:32; Acts 8:37

We Must Be Immersed Into Christ (Baptized)-  1Pe 3:21; Mk 16:16; Acts 2:38  

We Must Remain Faithful-  Rev 2:10; Acts 14:22   


  1. John 10:27-29 KJV

    My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand.

    How do I interpret the above passages in light of what you said?

    1. Thank you for the comment. First, let me apologize for the delayed reply. I have recently moved and I'm having problems getting my blog to send emails to my new account.

      Ok, let's keep Jn 10 in context. We see it starts with a parable of Jesus being the Good Shepherd in vv 1-21. Jesus is then walking in the temple and the Jews, now sick and tired of these parables, asks him to plainly say if He was the Christ or not in vv 22-24. Now the scripture you used was in the middle of Jesus' response. He was addressing a question on Him being the Christ. He was not addressing whether a saved person can become lost. When we try to say that he was addressing a lost person we are putting words in Jesus mouth.

      I believe Jn 10:27-29 gives great evidence of this post. We see that Jesus says His sheep will hear Him and follow him. The word "follow" is defined as a follower or companion which is expressing a union or a likeness. So Jesus says His sheep will have a union with Him and they will look like Him by their actions. In other words, He says my sheep will hear me and obey.

      What do His sheep get for hearing and obeying? They get eternal life and will never perish. They will not be plucked out by any man. The apostle Paul says a similar thing in Rom 8:31-39. This is a wonderful blessing of safety and security being in the Lord's flock isn't it? Jn 10 & Rom 8 are addressing external things that are unable to "pull, pluck or separate" us from God. It DOES NOT say that a person can not CHOOSE to leave the flock. Satan may not be able to pull us from the the flock, but we are permitted to walk out! Therefore, a sheep can choose to not hear and not obey the Good Shepherd. A Christian can chose not to obey Jesus, turn away from the truth, and become entangled in the world again. This is addressed in 2Pe 2:20,21 "For if, after they have escaped the defilements of the world by the knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and are overcome, the last state has become worse for them than the first. For it would be better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than having known it, to turn away from the holy commandment handed on to them."

      Therefore, a person is granted a choice to be obedient or disobedient. The freedom of choice is never taken away from man. Adam and Eve had a choice, "To eat or not to eat" or "to obey or not to obey." We both know how they chose and the outcome of their choice. A Christian may not be plucked from the hands of God, but they are allowed, and often do, jump from His hands!!!

      I hope this helps clarify things. Nothing can pluck us away from God, but we chose to leave Him!