By John MacArthur @http://www.sfpulpit.com
In light of the discussion on Hebrews 6, we will be running several articles this week on eternal security. Today’s article comes from a booklet John wrote entitled, Is Your Salvation Secure? The entire booklet can be read here.
For many years people have debated the issue of whether a Christian can lose his salvation. Some within Christendom believe you can lose your salvation; others say you can’t. That, perhaps more than any other single doctrine, has been a dividing issue in the church. How sad that is, because the Bible is clear about the matter.
It is surprising that many Christians would deny or ignore the straightforward presentation of the doctrine of security in Romans chapter 8. There are other texts in the Bible that discuss the security of the believer, but none are as pointed as Romans 8:28-30. We find in those verses that everyone who has been redeemed by Jesus Christ, without exception, will be glorified.
The key phrase in this trilogy of verses is at the end of verse 28: “called according to His [God’s] purpose.” We are forever secure because that was God’s purpose. The Son of God and the Holy Spirit intercede for us so that the plan of God might come to pass. So our security is guaranteed not only by the purpose of God, but also by the outworking of that purpose through the intercessory ministries of the Son and the Spirit.
The phrase “called according to His purpose” helps us to understand verses 29-30, which explain God’s purpose: “For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren; 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 causes all things to work out for the believer’s good, which is “according to His purpose.” There is no other way to explain why He does that; He simply wants to. God is free to make whatever decisions He wants. And He sovereignly chose for all things to work together for the good and glory of those who are redeemed. Nothing can change that.
To continue reading this booklet, click here.