wondering about God?
(A) KEY SCRIPTURES
Romans 10:9, 10 Acts 2:38
John 3:16 Romans 3:23
Ephesians 2:8-9 Romans 6:23
Salvation is the process through which the individual, alienated from God by sin, is reconciled to God and reckoned just or righteous through faith in Christ.
Salvation can also be referred to as deliverance from the power or penalty of sin; redemption.
In the Hebrew language the word for salvation is yasha, from which we have Joshua. Yasha has this meaning: "to be wide, or roomy - a broad and spacious place." Yasha communicates the idea of freedom. It is "liberation from confinement, constriction, and limitation." The word for salvation in the Greek language is sozo or soteria, which means “cure, recovery, or remedy."
The word "Salvation" in the Bible is used in many different ways. The basic meaning is "deliverance from danger." You could use the term to refer to healing of diseases, deliverance from fear, deliverance from famine, deliverance from enemies, deliverance from bondage, and so on. In Exodus 14:30 we find the words, "That day the Lord saved Israel from the hands of the Egyptians, and Israel saw the Egyptians lying dead on the shore." So in this instance the word is used with reference to God's deliverance of Israel from the bondage of Egypt.
However, the word "salvation" is also used in the Bible with a far more substantial meaning, a spiritual meaning. In the Scriptures we see salvation in its fullest meaning to be God's deliverance of us from his wrath, from sin, and from death. In Romans 1:18 Paul speaks about our need for deliverance from God's wrath: "The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of men..." Paul speaks in Romans 3:23 about the need for deliverance from sin because, "all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God." And in Hebrews 9:27 we see our need for deliverance from death as "man is destined to die once, and after that to face judgment."
(D) HISTORICAL DIMENSIONS
The disobedience of Adam and Eve (Gen.3:6-7) led to their consequent loss of God's grace and the peace and happiness of the Garden of Eden. When they ate the forbidden fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, God punished them by driving them out of the garden and into the world, where they would be subject to sickness, pain, and eventual death. God told Eve that she would give birth in sorrow and pain; Adam's curse was that he would have to work hard to earn his livelihood. The effect of this sin affected all humanity and this picture is captured in the Scriptures below:
A) Man born out of Adam’s loins carries the exact nature of Sin.
“And Adam lived an hundred and thirty years, and begat a son in his own likeness, after his image; and called his name Seth” (Gen 5:3)
“Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me.” (Psalm 51:5)
B) Man totally Infested And Polluted with Sin.
As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. Romans 3:10-11 (KJV)
C) Falling from the Standard of God.
“For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;” (Rom 3:23)
The Consequence of this sin;
“For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” (Rom 6:23
Man became separated from God as a result of this sin leading to death.
There are three kinds Of death:
a) Spiritual death, which is separation from God in this life;
b) Physical death, which Is separation of the body from the soul; and
c) Eternal death, which is separation of body and Soul from God forever.
These are all products or end results of Sin. The death of Jesus Christ on
the cross is the only way to save us from these deaths.
(E) JESUS THE ONLY SOLUTION
Sin led Man to failure, emptiness, anxiety, rebellion, corruption, alienation from God and man,
fear, and death. This is the origin of the woes and evil in our world today. At the moment of
man's disobedience salvation became necessary. Salvation cannot come from man, because
man died through sin. It is absolutely impossible for a dead man to save himself. Man’s
dependence on Education and intellectual enlightenment, moral reformation, medical and
psychological treatment, economic and political strategy, or technological advancement, or any
other man initiated religious activity could not and cannot bring Salvation. Every one of man's
efforts at Self-Salvation is an exercise in futility.
“But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away” Isaiah 64:6
Salvation is by grace through faith in the finished work of Our Lord Jesus Christ and not by
man’s work or effort as evidenced in the Scripture below:
"For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith and this not from yourselves, it is
the gift of God not by works, so that no one can boast." (Ephesians 2:8:-9)
It must be emphasized that Jesus is the only way to Salvation as clearly indicated in Scripture;
"Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men
By which we must be saved." (Acts 4:12)
The death of Jesus Christ on the cross satisfied God's wrath and turned it away from us leading
to forgiveness and justification. Salvation is salvation from the wrath of God. The wrath of God
has been taken away. We have been reconciled to God. And not only that, Salvation is also
Salvation from sin. The Christian is saved from A) Sin's penalty, B) Sin's power, and, in heaven,
from C) Sin's very presence. Salvation is also salvation from death.
(F) HOW CAN ONE BE SAVED
Acts 2:38, Roman 10:9-10, Ephesians 2:8-9
Key Words in the Salvation Experience
- Believe in your heart
- Confess with your mouth
- Get Baptized
(G) SALVATION EXPERIENCES IN SCRIPTURE/BAPTISM
(I) The Ethiopian Eunuch- Acts 8:35-38
“Then Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same scripture, and preached
unto him Jesus. And as they went on their way, they came unto a certain water:
and the eunuch said, See, here is water; what doth hinder me to be baptized? And
Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest. And he answered
and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. And he commanded the
chariot to stand still: and they went down both into the water, both
Philip and the eunuch; and he baptized him.”
This Scripture unifies the extreme positions on either Romans 10:9-10 or Acts 2:38 alone. It is in fact the combination of the two Scriptures that leads to Salvation
(II) The Philipian Jailor - Acts 16:30-31
(III)The House of Cornelius – Acts 10:47
Other Important Scriptures: I Peter 3:21, Col 2:21, Acts 22:16, Gal 3:27
(H) THE BRIDGE ILLUSTRATION
MAN’S PROBLEM - SEPERATION
GOD’S SOLUTION – THE CROSS
MAN’S RESPONSE – RECEIVING CHRIST
(I) WHAT IT MEANS TO BE BORN-AGAIN
In Christianity, born again refers to a spiritual and metaphorical rebirth, accepting Jesus as the Messiah and receiving the Holy Spirit. The origin of the term born again is John 3:3. It is associated with Salvation, Conversion and Spiritual rebirth. It is being born of the Spirit
“Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” (John 3:3)
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!’ (2 Corinthians 5:17)
“Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole spirit, soul and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.’ (1 Thessalonians 5:23)
The Bible makes it clear that we are more than just body and soul. The body is, of course, the physical part of us. Our soul is made up of our mind, our will and our emotions.
“Our emotion expresses how we feel, our mind tells us what we think and our will communicates what we want.”
“Until a man is born of the Spirit, his soul will run his life. He is used to assessing situation with his mind, and reasoning his own conclusions. He pays considerable attention to his emotions, and often allows them to rule him. He makes his own decisions, based upon the reasoning of his mind, or as a result of the emotional desires he has, or by a combination of the two.”.
So before we are born again we live as ‘two bit’ people in the realm of our body and soul (inner being). Our human spirits are to all intents and purposes dead, that is, they are inactive and unable to affect our actions, decisions and desires (see Ephesians 2:1-2)
To be ‘born again’ means that we receive life in this deep area of our personality, which has become dead because of sin? When we are made alive by the Spirit of God we can begin to live as ‘three bit’ people, that is, we can know what it really means to be alive in body, soul and spirit! (See Galatians 5:16-25; Roman 8:9-14; John 3:3-8)
Jesus says that we cannot see the kingdom of God until we are born again. To see the Kingdom means to experience the reality of God, to know the love and forgiveness of God and to be able to live in the power of God as He lives in us by the Holy Spirit.
(J) ASSURANCE OF OUR SALVATION
We must never rely on feelings but on the facts.
What the word of God tells us (John 5:24, Hebrews 13:5, John 6:37; Romans 8:38-399, Titus 1:2, John 10:8-29)
The witness of the Holy Spirit in us (Romans 8:14-16; 1 John 3:24)