Greg Strand is EFCA executive director of theology and credentialing, and he serves on the Board of Ministerial Standing as well as the Spiritual Heritage Committee. He and his family are members of Northfield (Minnesota) EFC.
Does the EFCA believe in “once saved, always saved” or that one can “lose their salvation”?
The EFCA as a denomination attempts to focus on the essentials of the gospel which means we have a parameter on some doctrinal issues. One of those issues is whether or not one affirms eternal security (perseverance of the saints) or apostasy (one can fall away and lose one's salvation). The former view is generally held by those who would be more Calvinist/Reformed in their leanings while the latter would be held by those more Arminian/Wesleyan and Lutheran.
Because the EFCA is a place for both Arminians/Wesleyans (including Lutherans) and Calvinists/Reformed, there is no official position either mandating or prohibiting either position. Rather, our formal, official position is that we are a place where both are allowed and proponents of either position can serve and minister together. It is not to be a doctrine that causes division in the EFCA
It is true that local EFC churches would lean in one theological direction more so than another on this doctrine. But whichever way the church leans, the church ought to be welcoming to the person who leans in the other theological direction. This means this issue is local church specific and a local church distinctive.
In the EFCA it falls into the category of the “significance of silence,” or that area in which we affirm “unity in the essentials, dialogue in the differences,” and without division.