According to Christians who believe that salvation can be lost:

  • What is eternal life? Is eternal life attained now (in this life / before death) or at the resurrection?
  • What is spiritual rebirth? When a Christian is born again, does he/she attain eternal life at that moment?
  • If salvation can be lost, can salvation be regained? Can we be saved multiple times? If so, would that mean that we can have multiple "born again experiences"?

Related questions

  • In Judaism, an apostate who repents is called a baal teshuvah, and he is considered closer to God's essence than a saint.
    – Fomalhaut
    Jun 23 at 1:14

2 Answers 2


Read the Parable of the Wise and Foolish Virgins, the Parable of the Talents, the Parable of the Prodigal Son, what the Lord mentions about those who commit Blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, and what the Lord says about those who take the mark of the beast.

Using the mark of the beast as an example. If you are a truly born against spirit who is saved in Jesus Christ, according to the Lord's own words, you will be eternally damned and will not be allowed to repent and be saved again.

If you commit blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, you can never be forgiven.

And if you do not do the work the Lord assigns you in His house, you will lose your salvation as shown in the Parable of the Talents.

If you receive the annointing of the Holy Spirit, and don't keep the annointing topped up as the wise virgins did, but let it run out as the foolish virgins did, then you will be locked out of Heaven.

But there are times when you as a saved person can fall into temptation and sin, and you can still repent and be saved. Consider when Jesus was denied by Peter before the crucifixion, and after the resurrection, how Jesus asked him 3 times to feed His sheep!

You have to know the context of the sin and the conditions attached.

When you are born, you are born spiritually dead belonging to the devil and destined for Hell.

Once you are born again, you can sin and be forgiven depending upon what the sin is. But if you sin the sin that kills your spirit, then you can never be reborn into life again and will remain among the damned.

1 John 5:16 New International Version 16 If you see any brother or sister commit a sin that does not lead to death, you should pray and God will give them life. I refer to those whose sin does not lead to death. There is a sin that leads to death. I am not saying that you should pray about that.

But when you invite Jesus into your life and accept Him as your Lord and Saviour, then at that point you have entered into eternal life because you become spiritually born of Jesus. At that point you are expected to repent and turn your life around. And once you are saved, you are expected to know God's will for your life and do it. See, Matthew 7:21-23.


For mainstream Christians who believe that salvation can be lost (such as Arminians, Pentecostals, and Catholics), there is only one time conversion (born again) and one time corresponding baptism. That is the stage called "spiritual rebirth", receiving the indwelling Holy Spirit.

But between conversion and death we can sin mortally and if we don't repent we lost the salvation. For non-Catholics, repentance will regain our "justified" status, and for Catholics the sacrament of confession will regain us back our "sanctifying grace".

Only Calvinists believe eternal life starts now (in this corrupt body that will still die physically), since they believe the elect will be preserved, hence future eternal life after resurrection is guaranteed.

  • Saying "We can sin mortally" is a bit of a broad stroke; those more Arminian-leaning would say it's not that there's an unknown list of sins and if you commit one of those, you're out, rather you have to deliberately reject God/your faith. It's not that you've sinned so bad God can't forgive you, it's that you no longer want to be forgiven Jun 17 at 23:07

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