Part 1 of 21 –
What is Salvation?
I find that many Christians really do not know what the salvation that is of God actually includes. From what are believers saved? Of what does the believer’s salvation consist?
In these next few installments I have numbered three aspects of God salvation for believers. The first aspect of salvation is immediate, including several blessings described below. Later we will discuss a second aspect, which is in process, and a third aspect that is yet to come.
1. First and most vitally, our salvation is from perdition, from the judgment that is due every man because “all have sinned…” (Romans 3:23) and “the wages of sin is death…” (Romans 6:23a).
This first aspect is salvation from the eternal loss of our soul in God’s judgment. “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation (judgment); but is passed from death unto life.” (John 5:24) The loss of our soul would otherwise occur at the “Great White Throne” judgment of the lost dead who will be resurrected from their graves (Heb., Sheol; Greek, Hades) to stand at the final judgment (Rev 20:5, 12-13). Rev 20:15 …whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.
The judgment of all the lost of the ages occurs at the end of the 1,000 year millennial reign of Christ on earth, just prior to the eternal
on new (remade) earth. The Bible is clear that every person born of Adam’s lineage is infected with Sin (noun, as a nature). Romans 5:12 Wherefore, as by one man (Adam) sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned: Thus, all men are born and lost in sin and will come to eternal death due to their own individual acts of sin. “…There is none righteous, no, not one: (Romans 3:10) “The SOUL (Heb. nepesh, human vitality) that sinneth, it SHALL DIE (Heb. mut, be killed)…” (Ezekiel 18:20a) kingdomof God
Ultimately, all the lost will die an eternal death, which obviously is the exact opposite of “eternal life.” They will die a physical body death when their human spirit leaves their body (James 2:26). Their unregenerated human “spirit” shall then “return unto the Lord who gave it.” (Eccl 12:7). With the loss of their human spirit, their soul, which had been enlivened by their human spirit, is then at once snuffed out. The loss of the soul-life may be likened to a lamp without electricity (spirit) – the light (soul) goes out.
This death sequence is the opposite of the original sequence of the enlivening of the first man, Adam. Adam was fully animated by the one inbreathing of the human spirit that God breathed into Adam. Genesis 2:7 (AMP) Then the Lord God formed man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath or SPIRIT OF LIFE, and MAN BECAME A LIVING BEING (NEPESH, SOUL). Zechariah 12:1 The burden of the word of the LORD for Israel, saith the LORD, which ...FORMETH THE SPIRIT OF MAN WITHIN HIM. As noted here, Adam first became enlivened in his human spirit; therewith his soul and body also became alive.
Just as David, all men have been conceived in sin (Psalm 51:5). All mankind since Adam’s fall are possessed of a fallen Sin nature that is precisely located within their body of flesh (Rom 7:17-23). As result of the fall of Adam, he and all men since are under the dominion of “Sin” (Rom 6:14a). The fallen evil sin-nature indwells every human person from birth. Thus, all men are born into this world as slaves of “SIN.” Rom 6:20 (AMP) For when you (Christians) were (formerly) SLAVES OF SIN... All men are hopelessly and eternally lost in sin unless God would intervene in their lives, individually.
This was the state of all mankind until God made a “way” (John 14:6 “(Jesus)…I am the way”) for men to be saved from judgment. Now God works to intervene in the individual lives of men… to bring them to His salvation that is in Christ Jesus. He works in men to draw them to forgiveness, eternal life, and relationship with Him, via His Son Jesus, who “redeems (ransoms) us from all sin” (Titus 2:14).
Cornelius R Stam wrote; “…God has taken us before His bar of justice, pronouncing us guilty, but He also stepped down, as it were, to pay the penalty for our sins Himself…then He justly declares us righteous in Christ.”
Rom 3:24-26 Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: 25 Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; 26 To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.
Our salvation is based upon Christ’s payment of our just debt. Today believers are “justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus” (Rom. 3:24). The word “freely,” here, does not mean “without cost,” but “without cause.” The same original word is translated “without a cause” in Jn 15:25, where we find the words of Christ: “They hated Me (Jesus) without a cause.” Men as sinners hated Jesus without a cause, yet God justifies sinners without a cause. What had Christ done to earn the hatred of men? Absolutely nothing! Jesus had been kind and He helped those in distress. He had healed the sick. He had made the dumb to speak, the deaf to hear, the blind to see, and the lame to leap for joy. Why, then, did they hate Him: Jn 15:25 says they hated Jesus “without a cause,” without any cause in Him. The cause of their hatred springs from their own evil hearts. Adam and Eve became “as gods” of their own lives (Gen 3:5, 26); therewith all men are “at enmity with God” (Rom 8:7).
What have we as sinners done to merit justification before God? Nothing whatever! We as sinners have broken God’s natural law daily (Rom 2:15); lying, cheating, stealing, deceiving, omitting, gossiping, and committing hundreds of other sins. Yet, in love, God gave His Son to die for us on
Calvary“that He might be just and (at the same time) the Justifier of him that believeth (trusts) in Jesus” (Rom. 3:26). God loves and justifies believers “without a cause,” that is without any cause in them or due to them. The only cause is to be found in God’s own heart of love, for “… for GOD IS LOVE.” (1John 4:8b).
Those who trust in Christ alone, the One who died for their sins, they are justified “without a cause,” by God’s grace, through the “redemption” that is “in Christ Jesus.” “God commendeth His love toward us in that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us” (
5:8). “By this man (Jesus) is preached...the forgiveness of sins, and by Him (by Christ) all that believe are justified from all things, from which He could NOT BE justified by the law of Moses” (Acts 13:38, 39). Rom.
God now freely offers men forgiveness, justification and redemption “in Christ,” to reconcile believers to Himself. Upon their believing, God immediately gives each one His Son’s very “life” (Zoe, resurrected spirit of life). Jesus’ resurrected eternal LIFE is the one remedy for eternal DEATH.
John 3:16 (AMP) For God so greatly loved and dearly prized the world that He [even] gave up His only begotten (unique) Son, so that whoever believes in (trusts in, clings to, relies on) Him shall not perish (Gk. apollymi, be destroyed fully) but have (the) ETERNAL (the everlasting) LIFE (Gk., Zoe, Christ’s “Spirit of life”).