Ephesians 2:8 clearly states:
“For by grace you are saved through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God” (MKJV)
A person is saved through grace. By this is meant that salvation is received due to God’s favor, and not by any hard work or effort of man. And this salvation is received through faith. Baptism, on the other hand, is the proof of a person’s faith. Thus, the faith of a believer is manifested and proven by his willingness to be baptized.
Now, why do we need to hold on or take care of this salvation we received? This is the salvation we received through faith. Aren’t we already saved by merely accepting it, once saved always saved?
Unfortunately, the Scriptures state that this faith should be held on to. Receiving salvation and doing nothing more is not enough. Looking at 1 Corinthians 15:1-2 we find:
“And, brothers, I declare to you the gospel which I preached to you, which also you have received, and in which you stand; by which you also are being kept safe, if you hold fast the word which I preached to you, unless you believed in vain.”
And also in Matthew 13:22:
“And that sown into the thorns is this: he who hears the Word; and the anxiety of this world, and the deceit of riches, choke the Word, and he becomes unfruitful.”
The Word of God that we received can be lost due to the anxieties and worries for the things in the world; these things can take away the faith of a believer. Faith without works is dead faith, and God removes branches that fail to bear fruit, as described in John 15:1-2.
Notice that Christ is the vine while the Father is the gardener, with us as the branches. While it is true that we are at the care of the Father, and no one can take us away from Him, it is also true that remaining fruitless would cause our severance. In fact, the Bible claims that the Father Himself will cut away the branches that do not bear fruit. Therefore, we should be careful of our faith; once we are saved and placed in the vine, we should do our best to work and bear fruit. After we are baptized, we could now served and produce fruit in the Church, under the leadership of apostles. Only in this way can we grow in faith and be ready to enter the kingdom of Heaven.