In our previous Bible study we considered What is Salvation and the Steps to Getting salvation? Today we want to learn about how to maintain and keep salvation. There are different heretical teachings that are dangerous to our receiving and sustaining salvation. One of which is the false doctrine of “eternal security”, also known as “once Saved, always saved”. It is the belief that once someone becomes a believer they are saved from Hell and cannot lose their salvation. This is a lie. Jesus Christ warns against the loss of salvation in the Bible. The concept of the entire Bible does not, in any way, support such a misleading teaching from Genesis to Revelation.
Salvation is a free gift from God, which we can either decide receive or reject because we are humans with independent will power. We are rational beings with the right to choose between good and bad, life and death (Deuteronomy 30:15-19). We can choose to follow God and also to drop our cross and unfollow Him. Hear this: “And Jesus said unto him, No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.” (Luke 9:62).
We believe that salvation can be received and lost. Therefore, we want to consider how a saved believer can keep and maintain their personal salvation.
1. Study the Bible daily
The study of God’s Word is very vital to the survival of every believer. It is the amount of God’s Word that you have and practice that determines your level of spirituality and spiritual well-being. The study of the Word of God is so important that it cannot be overemphasized.
Below are a few reasons why we should study God’s Word daily:
-Spiritual growth. The Word of God helps us to grow spiritually daily. “As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby” (1 Peter 2:2).
– Strength to Battle and Defeat the Devil:
Satan is in a constant war with believers so that he can deter them from continuing the course of following God. The Word of God gives us the strength and wisdom we need to overcome on a daily basis. “And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God” (Ephesians 6:17).
– To Grow and Strengthen our Faith:
“So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” (Romans 10:17). The Word of God helps us to grow our faith in God. We meet different trials every day, and we need the Word to overcome them so that the temptations will not conquer our faith.
– The Fear of God:
We need to constantly feed ourselves with the Word of God so that we can have the fear of God in our hearts to enable avoid sinning against God.
Psalm 119:9, 15 “Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed thereto according to thy word. I will meditate in thy precepts, and have respect unto thy ways.”
– Success in Life:
The Holy Bible contains principles of success in life. God told Joshua to meditate on and do His Word so that he could be successful. “This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.” (Joshua 1:8).
2. Obey God’s Commandments
We are called to obedience and not to disobedience. Some people believe that Jesus Christ has removed the commandments of God, therefore, there’s no commandments to keep, and that we only need to just live by faith. This is wrong! The ceremonial laws of the Old Testament laws have been nailed to the Cross but the New Testament has commandments that every Christian must obey. Jesus Christ said “Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you” (Matthew 28:20). Look at the following scriptures and know that Jesus Christ has given us His own commandments to keep:
“If ye love me, keep my commandments.” (John 14:15)
“He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him” (John 14:21).
“Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.” (John 14:23).
“If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love.” (John 15:10)
“For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.” (1 John 5:3)
God hates disobedience. Those who must be and remain in His Kingdom must obedient (1 Sam. 15:22). Being obedient is not the same with being perfect. You must not be perfect first to remain in His Kingdom but you must not submit to His authority in humility with the spirit of obedience. We must live a lifestyle that is above sin (2 Timothy 2:19).
3. Be Filled with the Holy Spirit
When we receive Jesus Christ and get baptized we receive the Holy Spirit into our bodies. We must then strive to be filled with the Holy Spirit of God. The Holy Ghost baptism is important to every believer. There are many things the Holy Spirit of God living in us does for us. Without the Holy Spirit we cannot walk with God and please Him.
– Let the Holy Spirit live in you. “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?” (1 Corinthians 3:16)
“But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.” (Romans 8:9)
– Be baptized in the Holy Spirit. Acts 2:2-4.
– Manifest the fruit of the Spirit.
4. Maintain a Lifestyle OF Prayer and Fasting
Jesus Christ who is God showed us the example of how a Christian must live. Jesus Christ lived a prayerful lifestyle. He fasted and prayed for 40 days and 40 nights (Matthew 4).
We read about Him going to secluded places to pray. When He foresaw that His time to face death was near He went to a garden and prayed. This is how a Christian should live. Prayer is for survival and maintenance of daily victories.
The Bible sees the importance of prayer to the extent that we are admonished to “Pray without ceasing.” (1 Thessalonians 5:17).
“Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints” (Ephesians 6:18).
Jesus Christ wants us to fast regularly. Mark 2:20 says “But the days will come, when the bridegroom shall be taken away from them, and then shall they fast in those days.”
Fasting is a necessity spiritual exercise that we need to engage ourselves in so that we can stay healthy spiritually. Fasting is very vital in this dark world where the powers of Hell are prowling about. Fasting was a lifestyle to Apostle Paul as seen in 2 Corinthians 11:27 “In weariness and painfulness, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness.”
Fasting helps us to be vigilant, keeps us spiritually fit, increases the level of self-control and helps to subject the flesh under the control of the Spirit of God.
Fasting elevates you spiritually.
5. Continuous Fellowship with God and other Believers
Fellowship is important, especially, for the purpose of mutual edification. We should associate with other born again believers and fellowship with them. This helps us to become stronger. “Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.” (Hebrews 10:25).
We also need to fellowship with God through His Spirit.
“That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ.” (1 John 1:3)
When God promises us that He will always be with us not because of giving us protection only but it is also because there’s need for fellowship. We are His temple and we interact spiritually through fellowship.
6. Evangelism (Soul Winning)
We are not saved to go to Heaven alone but to rescue others from the wrath of God.
A Christian who does not evangelize to win souls is not alive in the Kingdom business of soul winning. Such selfish Christians will be questioned on the Day of Judgment for allowing souls to perish when it was in their power to preach to them.
Mark 16:15 “And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.”
Someone brought the Good News to you, so why must you hoard it and deprive others from hearing it through you?
7. Acts of charity
Our service to God is service to humanity. Those who are saved should see it as their responsibilities to help those in need. Some Christians give only in the Church. They do not see it as their obligation to help the needy around them. We should help those in need, both believers and unbelievers.
“As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.” (Galatians 6:10).
Let us show genuine love to those around us, especially believers, because in so doing we serve God (Matthew 25:34-40)