As true believers in Jesus Christ, we can rest with confidence that our eternal salvation is secure and unwavering.
But does this mean a Christian can simply live however they want knowing God will just forgive them?
The truth is, a person who is truly saved and covered by the blood of Jesus Christ will not live a life of continued, willful sin – and here is why.
To start, we know that salvation is a gift of grace through faith alone in Jesus Christ.
There is nothing we can do as humans to “earn” our salvation.
It doesn’t matter how often we go to church, say prayers, volunteer to feed the poor, or go on mission trips.
We are reminded in God’s Word that salvation is a gift of God, so we can’t boast or think we were “good enough” to earn it.
“For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.” – Ephesians 2:8-9
How beautiful is this gift!
This truth shuts down legalism dead in its tracks.
So does eternal salvation mean we won’t ever sin again?
Well no, of course not.
On this side of heaven, although we are declared righteous by the blood of Christ, we are still sinners and will continue the process of being sanctified until God calls us home.
But there is a difference between sinning, repenting for one’s sin, and asking God for help to fight sin…
… and a person who thinks they’ve now got the “golden ticket” into heaven and can just continue living however they’d like.
Part of becoming a Christian means the humble acknowledgement that we are not in control of our lives anymore – Jesus is.
And because Jesus is in charge, and He is Lord, we must obey Him.
Paul addressed the notion that grace promotes sin when he said:
“What shall we say then? Are we to continue to sin that grace may abound? By no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it?” – Romans 6:1-2
Ok, so what about the people who claim to be saved and covered by the blood of Jesus, but keep living a life of sin – just as they always have?
Well, some argue that if a person is living the exact same life they did before they claimed to be saved, willfully indulging in sin, then they truly haven’t experienced the gift of salvation.
“No one who continues to sin has either seen him or known him.” 1 John 3:6
When we are saved, because we love God, and have internalized His unconditional love, we don’t take it for granted and keep living as we did in our old self.
While grace isn’t a license to sin, as believers, we know that we will still mess up and sin, and when we do and repent, we can confidently know God is faithful and just to forgive us.
And finally, to be clear, there is a difference between a Christian who is genuinely struggling with a sin – whether it be lust, anger, anxiety, etc. – versus a person who simply “doesn’t care” and chooses to keep living a sinful life because God will “just forgive him.”
On this side of heaven, we will all have our individual struggles, which is why it is so important to continue to pray for one another and encourage each other to stay on the narrow path until we are called home to live forever with our Heavenly Father.
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.” – John 3:16-17
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