Question: Will the Holy Spirit leave a believer who contracts HIV? Do they still have eternal life? Is only Jesus necessary for eternal life?
To answer this question, I must start by making the assumption the question has been asked by a professing believer in Christ and has somehow fallen into sinful activities resulting in the contraction of HIV. If so, does that mean the Holy Spirit will leave you, and you no longer have eternal life in Christ? In addition, as questioned, can you gain eternal life only through Jesus Christ?
Beginning with the question of whether the Holy Spirit will leave a believer who contracts HIV or, for that matter, will He leave a believer who has fallen into various types of sins that are an abomination to the Lord? Let us begin by understanding the scriptures teach His Holy Spirit will never leave a true believer and teaches us of the eternal security of Christians. Note: I will look at what it means to be a true believer in Christ and their characteristics.
Ephesians 1:13-14 says, “In him you also when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory.”
Here we are taught that a “true” believer in Christ has been given the Holy Spirit as a guarantee until they acquire inheritance of their possession. Again, John 14:16 says, “And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever,”. We are taught that His Spirit has been given to us so that He will be with us forever, not to leave us at a particular time, but to remain with us forever. Amen!
While we live in a sinful world, believers can still fall into sin (1 John 1:5-10). Sometimes we may fall short of being worthy of the gospel when we struggle against the fight with our sinful nature. In fact, 1 John 1:6 teaches that if we say we have fellowship with God while we walk in darkness, THEN we lie and do not practice the truth. Notice here the emphasis is on “PRACTICE” (and not sinlessness). So those who do not practice the truth, or on the other hand, those who “practice” sin, do not in fact, have fellowship with God. These people love the sin they indulge in without remorse, regret, or guilt. Instead, they practice it and live in them. 1 John 3:8 also says “Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning…”
Take this time to examine your situation. Are you practising sin, or do you hate your sin, struggling to overcome it, seeking the help of the Holy Spirit to overcome it so that you may glorify God? If you love your sin, continue to practice it, and without a repentant heart, you may not truly be a believer in Christ(1 John 1:6).
1 John 1 goes on to say that if we walk in the light as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, cleanses us from all sin (1 John 1:7). Again, 1 John 3:7 says, “Little children, let no one deceive you. Whoever practices righteousness is righteous, as he is righteous.” This “practice” is the sign of a true believer, one who bears fruit in keeping with repentance (Matthew 3:8). It does not mean that you will be sinless. Instead, you would hate the sin you are in, not wanting to do them, and come in repentance before God. 1 John 1:9 says if we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
In saying all this, as a Christian, you may have fallen into a sin resulting in contracting HIV. If you are indeed a child of God, hating your sin, not continuing in its practice, and in repentance, God is faithful to forgive your sin and cleanse you from all unrighteousness. The Holy Spirit does not leave a true believer. If not, it is time to repent before Christ, believe in His name, repent from your sinful ways, and love Him. Only through Jesus Christ, the lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world, will you receive justification through His life, death, and resurrection.
There is only eternal life in Jesus Christ. John 14:6 says, “Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” Jesus is the only path to heaven. We can only stand justified because of the righteousness of Christ. John 17:2 says, “And this is eternal life, that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.” Only Jesus Christ can provide eternal life. To receive this free gift of salvation, believe in His name, trust in the death and resurrection of Christ as the payment for your sin and know that you have been justification comes from the righteousness of Christ (Romans 3:22).