Does the following verse imply that your salvation can be lost? It does not say, "... unless you've accepted Jesus"

1 Corinthians 6:9-10 NIV

Or do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with men nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.

I am specifically asking for an answer from a "keeping salvation" apologist.

  • 3
    What is a "keeping salvation" view? It would be helpful if you used terminology that matches what most Christians use.
    – Caleb
    Commented Feb 6, 2014 at 16:41

3 Answers 3


The conventional Protestant answer is to say that you must take this verse in the larger context of the Bible, which includes statements assuring us that our salvation cannot be lost. For example, John 10:28-29, "And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand. My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father’s hand." And many similar verses.

Then look at, for example, Romans 6:6-7, "knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin. For he who has died has been freed from sin."

Most Protestants therefore conclude that when you are saved, you are freed from your "sin nature". While you will still fail and fall, you will not engage in patterns of habitual sin. If you do, you are probably not really saved. That, they say, is what this verse is saying: That if you engage in habitual sin, you are probably not really saved and will not inherit the kingdom.

I'd hasten to add that we are also warned against judging the state of others' salvation. It is not my job to determine whether or not you are saved, that's between you and God.

Note I am speaking specifically from an evangelical Protestant perspective. I think a Catholic would give a very different answer.

  • I strongly agree with you concerning "... warned against judging the state of others' salvation." Christians have a tendency to do that. If we're not pointing out why they're going to hell, we're condemning them ourselves to hell. Commented Feb 6, 2014 at 14:57
  • @Jay Isn't there a difference between "being saved" and not having a "sinful nature"? Romans 6:6-7 says: "...we should no longer be slaves of sin" not that our human tendency to sin is removed. Or how would you reason that being saved removes our "sinful nature"? Or do we simply have different views on what "sinful nature" means?
    – telion
    Commented May 29 at 8:05
  • All humans sin. We are fallible creatures. But there's a difference between being tempted and sometimes failing, and being a "slave of sin". We could debate the meaning of the phrase "sin nature". Off the top of my head I can't think of a Bible verse that explicitly says that a saved person does or does not still have a sin nature. The Bible clearly says that a saved person still sins, e.g. Romans 7:15ff. But it also tells us that if we are saved we are no longer slaves to sin. Romans 6:17-18. I'd say we still have a sin nature, that is, we still have an inherent desire to sin.
    – Jay
    Commented May 29 at 14:07

In Assembly of God church, we are taught that a born-again Christian cannot sin or very rarely commit sins. We are taught that a born-again christian is identifiable from his character, for the old-self is buried in baptism and we put on the new-self. We become a new man after baptism.

5.2 The Evidence of Salvation

The outward evidence to all men is a life of righteousness and true holiness.

Ephesians 4:24 "...and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness."

Titus 2:12 "It teaches us to say 'No' to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age..."


If we still commit sin because of our weakness, all we have to do is confess our sins to God, ask for forgiveness and repent.

I think this is the same in many other Protestant Churches.

  • "If we still commit sin because of our weakness, all we have to do is confess our sins to God, ask for forgiveness and repent. " => So if you don't confess & repent you lose salvation correct?
    – telion
    Commented May 29 at 8:09

A person cannot lose their salvation. No matter the sin, Jesus atoned for it on the cross. The bottom line is that no sin is allowed into heaven no matter how small we think it is. All sin is sin and is worthy of death. So therefore, unless you have received Jesus as your Lord and Savior then you are "still in your sins." 1 John 1:9 states, "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. We never did anything to earn our salvation and therefore, we have been give the promise that we are "sealed until the day of redemption" Ephesians 4:30

  • "A person cannot lose their salvation." => Isn't 1 John 1:9 contradicting that position? It says "IF we confess..." => What happens if we don't confess?
    – telion
    Commented May 29 at 8:12
  • This scripture is in reference to confession/ repentance unto salvation which is a one-time act that binds and secures our salvation with Christ. Then there is a form of repentance which we must do to apologize and/or turn away from our wrongdoings. This is a lifetime act because we make wrong decisions throughout our lives. If we choose to, we can even confess our sin to one another(James 5:16). All in all, when we get to heaven, those sins which have gone unrepented of for what ever the reason are burned but yet we ourselves remain saved.. 1Cor. 3:15: Commented May 30 at 12:14

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