The controversy about the believer’s security is immediately ended by observing the various Bible passages related to eternal life that contain the little word “if.” Since if is the badge of a conditional statement, then the believer’s security is clearly conditional and not unconditional with such evidence. Here are the eternal facts, like it or not:
By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain. (1 Cor 15:2)
The one and only Christian “gospel” shouts out a conditional security for the believer. It is another gospel which denies that. As clear as that is, the following verses also supplement that gospel truth with more insights by saying the Christian must hold firmly till the end to share in Christ, etc.:
We have come to share in Christ if we hold firmly till the end the confidence we had at first. (Heb 3:14)
For if you live according to the sinful nature, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live, (Rom 8:13)
See that what you have heard from the beginning remains in you. If it does, you also will remain in the Son and in the Father. And this is what he promised us–even eternal life. (1 John 2:24,25)
About a dozen other Scriptures could also be cited, but those four suffice to prove that the believer’s security held out in the Christian gospel is conditional, that us sharing in Christ is conditional, that the Christian experiencing spiritual death or not is conditional, and us remaining in Christ and having eternal life is also conditional. It doesn’t get any better than that as far as clarity!
Any person open to the truth of Scripture can verify those facts for themselves. The conclusion, though disturbing to many, is a conditional security for the believer. That means there is no once saved always saved or eternal security, since all those spiritually lethal things can occur and can therefore interfere with final salvation and inheriting eternal life (Gal. 6:8,9).