The question remains after years of debate, when a person is saved, is he/she always saved? I think this question is TOO generic to be honest and answer it correctly. Instead, I think it's better to split this question into two questions:
1. Is a Christian who is saved, always saved?
2. Is a person who is saved, always saved?
To answer these questions, we first, I think, have to define what/who a Christian is. During our very first CSF of this semester, we did just that! This is what we came up with:
“A Christian is a person who believes in Jesus and who lives a life of repentance, turning from evil to God, placing his/her faith in Christ, committing his/her life to obedience in baptism, edification of other brothers and sisters, and to sound doctrine, having the heavenly seal of the Holy Spirit and experiencing the blessings that come from God’s goodness and power."
So to answer the two questions:
1. Is a Christian who is saved, always saved? Yes.
2. Is a person who is saved, always saved? No.
The key, I think, to understanding what living as a Christian involves, is the part of living a life, which means living in a continual state, of repentance, turning away from the evil things around us and turning to Christ. This being said, it is possible for a Christian to become just a person!!! There are many New Testament passages that we read that warn against this "falling away from the faith." As I said before, the key to understanding all of this is realizing that a Christian is LIVING IN A CONSTANT STATE, A CONSTANT RELATIONSHIP WITH JESUS. To best understand this, I think it's best to read what John has to say:
“This is the message we heard from Jesus and now declare to you: God is light, and there is no darkness in him at all. So we are lying if we say we have fellowship with God but go on living in spiritual darkness; we are not practicing the truth. But if we are living in the light, as God is in the light, then we have fellowship with each other, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, cleanses us from all sin.
If we claim we have no sin, we are only fooling ourselves and not living in the truth. But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness. If we claim we have not sinned, we are calling God a liar and showing that his word has no place in our hearts." (1 John 1.5-10)
I absolutely love how John puts it! If we aren't living our lives in a state of repentance, we are living in spiritual darkness. If we are living this way and we claim to be a Christian, we're lying! We don't truly have that relationship that Micah shares with us is what God desires (Micah 6.6-8). However if we are living in the light, we DO have that relationship with Jesus and we can truly/rightly be called Christian. Now I need to add a clarification here, walking in the light DOESN'T MEAN that you never sin and that you're perfect. If that were the case, John wouldn't have added the 'blood of Jesus, his Son, cleanses us from all sin' or 'if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness.' What walking in the light means, is that we understand and truthfully acknowledge that we are sinners who are lost without Jesus. We confess our sins to Him and REPENT from them, 'he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness.' It means that you are not living in a constant of continual sin!!!
So I guess from then a new question arises, "Can a Christian, become a person?" Unfortunately, as much as I want to say the answer is no, the answer is yes. Paul was very conscientious about this, writing:
“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 9.27)
Despite this however, I think we as Christians can be confident and reassured of the fact that if we continue in our relationship with Jesus Christ, continue to walk in the light, every time we fall (stumble into a shadow) and lay on the ground, holding out scrapped knee, God is light, and he will help you back up, forgive your confessed sins, and love on you like no one else!
"As for me, I look to the LORD for help.
I wait confidently for God to save me,
and my God will certainly hear me.
Do not gloat over me, my enemies!
For though I fall, I will rise again.
Though I sit in darkness,
the LORD will be my light.
I will be patient as the LORD punishes me,
for I have sinned against him.
But after that, he will take up my case
and give me justice for all I have suffered from my enemies.
The LORD will bring me into the light,
and I will see his righteousness."
Well I think that sums up most of the night! =) Hopefully I'll be able to update you on more happenings here soon! Until then!