We can be sure that God will hold up His end and no other force can keep us from our salvation1, but Scripture is abundantly clear that we can fall away and thereby lose our salvation1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9. In fact, Scripture shows the New Testament writers uniformly warned about this reality. Paul1,2,9, James4, John5, Jude6, Peter7,8 and even ‘anonymous’3 all give urgent warnings that we can lose our salvation.
“You didn’t earn your salvation, so you can’t lose your salvation.” This is the popular and knee-jerk response when the question if we can lose our salvation comes up. Ironically, the logic of the statement doesn’t even stand and is most certainly and obviously not true.
Of course we can lose things that we didn’t earn! If someone gives you a dollar bill you didn’t earn it but…you can lose it…you can neglect it…you can forget about it…you can misplace it..you can have it stolen…you can even simply discard it. So it is with our salvation, and Scripture even points to many of these same culprits3,4,8 of how we can lose our salvation.
[If there was ever a case study for the importance of understanding the context of Scripture it’s demonstrated with this question and passages. We must always consider context for any passage of study. The simple process of the Bible Study Framework and its critical “What is the context?” component is demonstrated below.]