Man tends to oversimplify salvation diminishing God and His purpose in the process
Oftentimes we make salvation so man-empowered and so one-dimensional … we create an impotent counterfeit … something religious
Focused on an event … a personal decision for Christ … a prayer of salvation … a declaration of ‘I am saved’
We really market and sell the ‘free gift’ (Romans 6:23) while failing to say a word about the ‘cost of discipleship’ (Luke 14:26-33) …
And while there is absolutely no doubt that the free gift of God is of utmost preeminence (Colossians 1:18) … God has a purpose to be fulfilled for those who receive that free gift (Romans 8:29) … a purpose not without costs …
Evangelism is not the end-game. In football analogy, it is simply recruiting … seeking a commitment letter. What comes next? Coaching, conditioning, practices, games, victories … and losses, injuries, and championships. A ‘Yes’, simply says ‘Let’s begin’ NOT ‘It is finished’.
Jesus did not say to make converts … He said ‘make disciples of all nations’ (Matthew 28:19)
We celebrate the rebirth of a child of God … and then leave that newborn infant IN Christ to his or her own devices … perhaps that makes more sense to the spiritual man than it does to the natural mother. An infant IN Christ should be embraced by the church family and loved and nurtured toward maturity, preparing them for the mission … the battle … of life that lies ahead. While they have learned of the love of Jesus … now they must learn of the love one another.
Instead we convert them, then leave them to choose next steps, to become easy prey for the prowling, roaring lion (1 Peter 5:8) … much like that young one you see a lion cut out of the safety and protection of the herd on nature documentaries …
Salvation as defined by God is … divinely multi-dimensional
Salvation has a beginning with God … a beginning in which you were chosen IN Christ Jesus before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:3-4)
Salvation is found IN Christ Jesus alone (2 Timothy 2:10, 3:15), the gift of God (John 3:16, Ephesians 2:8) and not a result of works (Ephesians 2:9)
Salvation has another beginning with you and with me … when we respond as Peter instructed at Pentecost:
“Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off, as many as the Lord our God will call to Himself … Be saved from this perverse generation!” (Acts 2:38-40)
Salvation is guaranteed … to those the Father has given to the Son … none will be lost (John 10:29) God chooses us … we don’t choose Him …
Salvation is guaranteed by the seal of the Holy Spirit of God for the day of redemption. (Ephesians 4:30)
Salvation is not an event … it is a journey … a process … by which ‘God who is at work IN you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure’ … we are ‘being saved’ (Philippians 2:12-13)
Salvation has a finish line … Peter calls it ‘the outcome of our faith’ and confirms it will ‘be revealed in the last time.’ (1 Peter 1:3-9)
Salvation is both personal AND communal … God is performing His work IN and THRU us individually and collectively (Ephesians 5:23, Revelation 19:7)
Yes, I am saved … I am being saved … I will be saved.
Also, we are saved … we are being saved … we will be saved.
All praise, honor and glory to our Lord and Savior!