16If the first piece of dough is holy, the lump is also; and if the root is holy, the branches are as well.
17But if some of the branches were broken off, and you, being a wild olive, were grafted in among them and became partaker with them of the rich root of the olive tree, 18do not be arrogant toward the branches; but if you are arrogant, remember that it is not you who supports the root, but the root supports you. 19You will say then, “Branches were broken off so that I might be grafted in.” 20Quite right, they were broken off for their unbelief, but you stand by your faith. Do not be conceited, but fear; 21for if God did not spare the natural branches, He will not spare you, either. 22See then the kindness and severity of God: to those who fell, severity, but to you, God’s kindness, if you continue in His kindness; for otherwise you too will be cut off.
16For if the firstfruit be holy, the lump is also holy: and if the root be holy, so are the branches. 17And if some of the branches be broken off, and thou, being a wild olive tree, wert graffed in among them, and with them partakest of the root and fatness of the olive tree; 18Boast not against the branches. But if thou boast, thou bearest not the root, but the root thee. 19Thou wilt say then, The branches were broken off, that I might be graffed in. 20Well; because of unbelief they were broken off, and thou standest by faith. Be not highminded, but fear: 21For if God spared not the natural branches, take heed lest he also spare not thee. 22Behold therefore the goodness and severity of God: on them which fell, severity; but toward thee, goodness, if thou continue in his goodness: otherwise thou also shalt be cut off.
Can Christians lose their salvation? There are few more contested and more important theological questions in Christianity. Many believers are plagued by doubts because they fear that they may fail to work out their own salvation and be eternally lost in hell. In this sermon on Romans 11:16–22 titled “Final Perseverance,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones offers solace to any fearful Christians. He says that the Bible never teaches that true believers can lose salvation. This is for the simple reason that it is God through His Son Jesus Christ who saves. Christians are not even saved by faith, first and foremost, but ultimately by Christ who grants them their faith. Jesus loves His people and He is both able and willing to guard them from ever falling away. What about those passages that speak of the need to persevere? The Holy Spirit uses many means to build up Christians in faith and joy and these passages that warn Christians not to fall away are one of these means that God uses to preserve those He loves. What about people who say they are Christians and stop believing? There are many who are self-deceived and think that they are saved, but their life shows that this is not a true work of God. The glorious truth of the gospel is that Jesus saves all those that He loves and He will lose no one.
Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones
Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.