For the last several posts, we've discussed what it means to be saved and how one gets saved. Today I want to look at a question that confuses many: who can be saved? In short, the answer is anyone. Yes, anyone. Anyone who believes on the Lord Jesus Christ and accepts Him as their Savior is saved. It doesn't matter their gender, their race, their denomination, their net worth or their popularity. The Bible says, "whosoever will," and the Bible means exactly what it says. Here are just a few verses that support this stand:
And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely. - Revelation 22:17
For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. - Romans 10:13
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. - John 3:16
Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. - Matthew 10:32
And when he had called the people unto him with his disciples also, he said unto them, Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. - Mark 8:34
And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this? - John 11:26
Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and every one that loveth him that begat loveth him also that is begotten of him. - I John 5:1
You will not find any exceptions in the Scriptures. There are no verses that state "whosoever except. . ." John 3:16 doesn't say that God so loved part of the world. It says He loved the world. God is a loving God, and as such, He doesn't want anyone to go to hell (II Peter 3:9). That being said, we must also realize that God is a holy God, and there is no place for unholiness in His kingdom. That is why He sacrificed His only begotten Son. Only through that sacrifice could both His love and His holiness be satisfied.
He has offered everyone the opportunity to trade in their filthy rags of sin in exchange for His holy robe of righteousness. Everyone has a choice. The invitation is extended to all, without exception.
"But what about the elect?" you may be asking. "Doesn't the Bible say that some are predestined to go to Heaven?"
Yes and no. The mention of the elect and those predestined only serves as proof of God's omniscience (all-knowing characteristic). It doesn't mean that God picks and chooses who
get saved. It simply shows that God already knows who
get saved. He sees the beginning from the end. He abides outside of time. With Him, there is no past or future. I know that's a lot to take in, but it's not necessary for us to understand it. We need only believe it. That being the case, God knows right now who will be saved tomorrow and the next day and the next day. And in that sense, all those who are saved or will be saved are the elect or the predestined. It's still man's choice. It has been since the beginning, and it will continue to be so until the end of time as we know it (and maybe even after that, who knows?)
Once again, we must be careful not to take a few confusing passages and turn them into our own belief system that clearly undermines other clear passages in the Bible. The message of "whosoever will" is sprinkled all throughout the Bible (in the New Testament especially). And as we've already seen, the Bible does not contradict itself. So we can take comfort that when God says "whosoever will," that's exactly what he means.
Who can be saved? Anyone who puts their trust in Christ. And that includes you!
The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. - II Peter 3:9