Am i saved if i continue to sin?

There is a recurring concern among Christians about the security of our salvation. Can I lose my salvation for any reason? Are there certain things that will cause God to revoke my salvation? While these worries can feel real, we must look to the scriptures to ground our conclusions.


Let us first consider what God truly does with our sin the moment we become officially saved. It can be described in two decisive acts. We are freed and forgiven of sin because of what Jesus Christ did at the cross and accomplished through His resurrection. Upon our conversion, the Bible teaches us that we have become set free from the dominion and power of sin. Paul writes in Romans 6:6-7 that “our old self was crucified with him so that the body ruled by sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin-because anyone who has died has been set free from sin.” Therefore, while sin previously held a condemning authority over us keeping us in utter bondage, that power has now been broken because of Christ. Sin no longer has the power to sentence us to eternal condemnation because Jesus has rescued us from that dreadful destiny (Romans 8:1). This freedom, purchased by Christ, is a gift given once and for all as we continue to believe in Christ as our redeemer and savior.


Beyond our freedom, Christ has also died to grant us God’s forgiveness. This act of pardon is not limited to a certain time frame nor is it conditional upon us. The past, present, and future forgiveness of God is solely dependent on the completed work of Christ at calvary. If our forgiveness was conditional to us, then Christ died for nothing or would need to repeat his sacrifice over and over again. We know this cannot be the case. Hebrews 10:10 affirms that we have been cleansed of our sin through the offering of the body of Jesus once for all. The only act required of the sinner is true repentance and confession. When this occurs, God is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9). Therefore, nothing can change a true Christian’s legal standing before God because God’s forgiveness and freedom are final decisive acts rooted in the finished work of Jesus Christ.


All of that is to communicate to us the lengths that God went to in order to save us in such a magnificent way. The salvation granted to the truly repentant sinner is a gracious gift of eternal life. Whenever we are tempted to think God will change His mind about us, we should remember that God makes no mistakes and will lose none of those that are His own (John 10:28-30).


Our confusion then lies in what we are to do with the sin that remains a part of our lives. There is no promise in scripture that we are going to enter a state of sinless perfection once we’re saved. In fact, the Bible says if we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us (1 John 1:8). The only time we will become sinless is when we pass from this life and enter our glorified bodily state in the presence of the Lord. Until then we cooperate with God’s Holy Spirit in the work of putting to death that which remains in our mortal bodies (Colossians 3:5). In other words, now that we are fully aware of our sinful tendencies, we are to target them with all persistence to eradicate them from our lives. This becomes of a lifelong process of purification, sanctification and holiness, in which we sin less and less over time.

Let us include the two themes we mentioned at the beginning and see how they affect our daily effort in killing sin. Our freedom from sin allows us to become fully aware of our previous life of slavery. Now, we are suddenly awakened to even the smallest hint of sin and care deeply about dealing with it. However, consciousness of sin alone will not always help us. It might just lead us to the despairing thoughts of God revoking our salvation or doubting if we’re even saved. We need to pair our freedom from sin with God’s forgiveness of sin to truly fight. There will be times that we will win the war against sin through the power of Spirit, but we will surely also face defeat and many defeats at that. This is where we are allowed to call upon the everlasting grace of God to pick us up again so that we may fight with hope.


Therefore, yes, we are still saved despite our continued sins. However, we must be fully participating in the ongoing saving work God is doing in our lives by exposing our sins so that we might kill them every day. It is good to survey ourselves before God as David did and ask God to search our hearts (Psalm 139:23-24). Paul even insisted that we examine ourselves to see whether we are even in the faith (2 Corinthians 13:5). It is very possible for someone to continue in a lifestyle of sin, enjoy that sin, be unrepentant and unremorseful of that sin and cling for dear life to that sin. If this person has such strong loving-affections toward their sin, we can be assured that they were never saved to begin with. True Christians hate the sins that placed their savior on the cross. Although these same sins entangle themselves in the believer, they are not cherished nor adored. Rather the Christian learns to despise these thoughts, desires, and behaviours. They want nothing more than for God to take them away for good. You might want to reflect and consider whether this be the posture of your own heart.


One final note of encouragement. Even the Apostle Paul expresses to us his constant wrestle with sin in Romans 7. He explains the deep longings he has to do that which pleases God, but he also knows that sin is lurking around the corner trying to keep him bound. Paul’s tension reminds us that this is a war that plagues us until we leave this earthly life. For those uncaring and unwilling to fight, they prove themselves to be an unbeliever. But to those who are constantly burdened by their sinfulness, the Lord will grant mercy, strength, and the power of His Spirit to make us overcomers (Romans 8:37). Here are some helpful items that might encourage you in the daily battle:

  • Continue to read, meditate and live according to the Bible (Psalm 119:11).
  • Be more aware of the Holy Spirit’s Work in your life (Galatians 5:16).
  • Pray, Confess and Repent to God daily (Matthew 6:12-13; 1 John 1:9)
  • Make drastic changes to your influences & surroundings (James 4:7)
  • Confide in another Christian and become accountable (James 5:16)

Click here to read other articles on Bible topics.