There are some biblical teachings that just stir people up. No matter how many times I say, “we can agree to disagree about this” there’ll always be some people who just get worked up. Mention the work of the Holy Spirit or end time events, and people who disagree with me get fired up. But what gets some people really scorched is when I teach about the security of the believer, the biblical doctrine that if we have genuinely trusted in Jesus, believing that He died for our sins and rose again, proving He is really God, then we are absolutely secure in our salvation and can never lose it.
In last week’s blog, I discussed the security of the believer, identifying God the Father’s work in our redemption, a biblical idea that should calm our hearts not stir our wrath.Today, I want to focus on the God the Son’s work in keeping us safe and sound in our salvation. And if you disagree, don’t get upset or worked up; just take a moment and consider what these biblical passages teach about what the Lord Jesus does to keep us in God’s family.
First, the obedience of the Messiah Jesus keeps us secure. In John 6:37-40, the Lord Jesus said He will receive us, keep us, and ultimately raise us in the last day. But let’s focus on what He said of doing the Father’s will. “For I have come down from heaven, not to do My will, but the will of Him who sent Me. This is the will of Him who sent Me: that I should lose none of those He has given Me” (John 6:38-39). The Son of God became a man to do the will of His Father. If just one time the Lord Jesus failed to do His Father’s will, then He wouldn’t be who He claimed to be. The Lord Jesus staked His entire identity on always doing the Father’s will. And what is one specific desire of His Father? Jesus tells us: “that I should lose none of those He has given Me.” Our confidence in the Messiah Jesus’ obedience to the Father should give us absolute certainty, that if we have to come Him, He will keep us absolutely safe.
Our second source of security is the grip of the Messiah Jesus. The Good Shepherd, made this promise to those who truly trust in Him: “No one will snatch them out of My hand. My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all. No one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand” (John 10:28-29). The image the Lord uses is clear: He is holding us by the hand and we are safe in that. In fact, we are even more secure because the Father has the other hand. When my son was a toddler, we lived in New York City near Queens Blvd, a massive eight lane street. When we crossed that street with him, Eva and I would grasp each of his little hands in ours and there was no way He could get away from us. Some have objected that while no one can snatch us, maybe we can escape ourselves. Well we can’t snatch ourselves out of the Messiah’s hand any more than my toddler could have gotten away from his parents. If we have come to know Jesus, we are held tightly in His grip.
Yet a third way we’re safe with the Lord is the love of Messiah Jesus. Paul makes this abundantly clear in Romans 8:38-39: “For I am persuaded that not even death or life, angels or rulers, things present or things to come, hostile powers, height or depth, or any other created thing will have the power to separate us from the love of God that is in Messiah Jesus our Lord!” This is so clear but for those who say that nothing outside can separate me from the Lord but I can do so myself, just remember, we too are created beings, and don’t have the power to separate ourselves from the love of God found in the Messiah.
Finally, we are also secure in the intercession of our Messiah Jesus. If you’re like me, you might think, I’m so sinful and mess up so frequently, I certainly should be able to lose my salvation. But no, Hebrews 7:25 says Messiah Jesus “always lives to intercede for” us to the Father. And in 1 John 2:1-2, we are told that even when we sin, “we have an advocate with the Father—Jesus the Messiah, the Righteous One. He Himself is the propitiation (or satisfaction) for our sins.” Yes, we fail but we have a living Messiah Jesus, who is our intercessor with the Father, who assures us we are forgiven.
We have no greater source of security than knowing we belong to the Lord Jesus. So when considering this truth, we need two responses. First, we are to draw comfort from knowing we are safe in the hands of the Lord Jesus. As a dad, I always assured my boys that I would always love them, always care for them, and they would always be mine. Even if they abandoned all I ever taught them and rooted for the Red Sox. Now as adults, they tell me that this was a tremendous encouragement to them. How much more reassuring to know that the Lord Jesus will always keep us secure in His love.
Also, we need to respond by living holy lives, reflecting that we are sons and daughters of the King. We won’t choose to sin more and more to get more and more of His grace. Rather, we recognize what He has done for us in redeeming us and so we’ll live for the Lord Jesus, to bring honor to His name. So the next time we think about our security in the Son, let’s not get angry but encouraged, to rest in the Messiah Jesus and to live for Him.