Monday, March 11, 2013

Eternal Security According to the Apostle Paul

Paul was a firm believer in God's everlasting salvation. "I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep what I have committed to Him until that Day" (2 Tim. 1:12, see also Rom. 4:20-21). Romans 8 is full of it. He opens that grand chapter with, "There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus,who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit" and closes it with equally emphatic declaration of no separation "from the love of God." 

In delivering an address on the eternal security of the believer, I quoted the closing verses of that chapter, in proof that creation above and beneath, past and future, was challenged to produce anything that could separate believers from God's love. At the close of the happy service,a friend remarked, I can tell you something not named in these verses, which will assuredly separate you from God's love." Surprised, I asked, "What is it?" The answer was promptly given, "Sin." Once more we read the precious words, "For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord." Sin is not named, but it is surely included in the expression "things present", for the Apostle says in chapter 7:21: "Evil is present with me." Thus we regard these verse as conclusively proving the ever abiding security of all in Christ Jesus. 

Nothing can snatch you from the grasp of Christ, who has "all power" (Mt. 28:18), who is "the Almighty" (Rev. 1:8), who saves forever "those who come to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them" (Heb. 7:25, Rom 5:10, 8:34). We are engraved upon the palms of His (Is. 49:16), on His breastplate and on the stones upon His shoulders (Ex. 28:12, 29). “Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love" (Jer. 31:3). His hold, His heart and His power will not lose one of His own (Jn. 6:39). 

In Romans 8:30 we are furnished with a magnificent declaration on the security of God's elect. "Moreover whom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified." Here is a golden chain of four precious links stretching from eternity to eternity, each link in the divine chain dependent on the other. "Whom He predestined" in eternity, "these He also called" in time,"these He also justified and whom He justified, these He also glorified" in eternity. Predestined in the past, glorified in the future, and in the meantime both called and justified. Here there is no uncertainty. The infallible salvation of all believers is divinely secured, and no power of man or Satan can break any one of those four links. So absolutely certain is the divine result of God's eternal counsel respecting each one that it is spoken of as already accomplished, "them He also glorified." Our imperfect state and weakness are not taken into account at all in this divine assertion of eternal security. "God for us" brushes aside every difficulty and is the weakest believer's triumphant answer to every unbelieving doubt (Eph. 1:3-11, 2 Tim. 1:9, 1 Pet. 1:2-5).

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