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WHAT IS SALVATION?
Salvation is an important subject, but few lessons deal with it in its entirety. Many people do not fully understand all aspects of salvation and therefore cannot witness effectively to others. Salvation is a simple message, but God used a whole Bible to fully explain it.
Salvation is sort of like eating a meal when you’re hungry. On one hand, the message is simple; all you need to do is put the food in your mouth. But on the other hand, you can look at the big picture and it is more complicated. You could learn how to grow the vegetables, how to grow and pick the fruit, how to raise the steer, how to keep the food fresh, how to buy the other ingredients, how to prepare the food, and finally how to set the table.
At the end of this lesson, you will find a list of scriptures related to salvation. You can use these as part of the lesson, or they can be studied at home to give a more complete understanding of the doctrine of salvation.
Nelson’s Bible Dictionary defines salvation…... Salvation is the deliverance from the power of sin; redemption. In the Old Testament, the word salvation sometimes refers to
1. Deliverance from danger (Jer 15:20)
2. Deliverance of the weak from an oppressor (Ps 35:9-10)
3. The healing of sickness (Isa 38:20)
4. Deliverance from blood guilt and its consequences (Ps 51:14).
5. It may also refer to national deliverance from military threat (Ex 14:13) or release from captivity (Ps 14:7).
6. But salvation finds its deepest meaning in the spiritual realm of life. Man's universal need for salvation is one of the clearest teachings of the Bible.
7. Man is not only being saved from a life of sin, but he is also being saved from the wrath of God and the punishment of Hell.
The history of salvation:
The need for salvation goes back to man's removal from the Garden of Eden (Gen 3). After the sin of Adam and Eve, man's life was marked by strife and difficulty. Increasingly, corruption and violence dominated his world (Gen 6:11-13).
When God destroyed the world with the flood, He also performed the first act of salvation by saving Noah and his family. These eight people became the basis of another chance for mankind. The salvation of Noah and his family was viewed by the apostle Peter as a pattern of the full salvation which we receive in Christ (1 Peter 3:18-22).
The central Old Testament experience of salvation is the Exodus (Ex 12:40-14:31). Much of Israel's worship of God was a renewal of this mighty experience that brought them from tyranny in Egypt to freedom in the Promised Land (Ex 13:3-16). The mighty saving power of God was demonstrated dramatically as the Israelites formed a holy nation of priestly servants of the Lord (Ex 19:4-6). The Exodus became a pattern of salvation by which God's future deeds of redemption would be understood.
But just as the Exodus symbolized their salvation, the Captivity of the Israelites in Babylon was a disastrous return to bondage. The people responded to this plight with expectations of a new and better Exodus (Isa 43:14-16) in which God would forgive their sins and restore their hearts to faithfulness (Jer 31:31-34).
This hope for a new Exodus merged with expectation of a full realization of the rule of God (Ezek 36:22-38). Since God was Lord and had shown Himself to be righteous and faithful, He must one day overpower His enemies and perfect the life of His people. This hope is expressed through the concept of the "Day of the Lord" as described by the Old Testament prophets (Joel 2:1-11; Amos 9:11-15). This hope also focused on the role of the Anointed King and the coming of the Messiah (Ps 2).
Even Israel's return from the Captivity, however, failed to fulfill all their hopes (Hag 2:3). So, a new understanding arose: the full realization of God's purpose of salvation would involve the coming of a completely new age (Isa 65:17-25, from Nelson's Illustrated Bible Dictionary, Copyright © 1986, Thomas Nelson Publishers)
This doctrine of salvation reached its fulfillment in the death of Christ on our behalf. Jesus' mission was to save the world from sin and the wrath of God (Matt 1:21; John 12:47; Rom 5:9). During his earthly ministry, salvation was brought to us by his presence and the power of faith (Luke 19:9-10). Now, our salvation is based on His death and resurrection (Mark 10:25).
What salvation is not!
1. Salvation is not self-punishment, fasting, pain infliction, or meditation.
2. It is not living a good life - Loving others, acts of service, charity, or abstinence from sin.
3. It is not denying sin
4. It is not claiming to be saved or pretending to be saved.
5. It is not believing in God.
This doctrine of salvation was completed by the death of Christ.
1. Jesus was sent to be living sacrifice to save us from sin and eternal punishment. During His earthly ministry, salvation was brought to us by His presence and the power of faith.
2. Now, our salvation is based on His death and resurrection.
What should we know about salvation?
1. Everyone needs salvation. Rom 3:23…... for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God
2. Salvation is available to everyone. Rom 10:12-13.….. For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile — the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, 13 for, "Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved."
3. Love: It all starts with Gods love for us. By the grace of God, he sacrificed his own son to die on the cross to make salvation possible.
a. John 3:16…... "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
b. JOHN 3: 17-18…... 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God's one and only Son.
4. Grace: Because God loves us he extends the gift of mercy to us which is Grace……Ephesians 2:8-9...... For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith-and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God 9 not by works, so that no one can boast.
What steps are involved in receiving salvation?
1. Redemption: Freedom purchased at a price - Eph 1:7...... In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God's grace.
2. Faith: Faith is more than just belief……Heb 11:1-2...... Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. This is what the ancients were commended for.
3. Repentance: Repentance means admitting your sin and having a desire to change…... 1 John 1:8-10….. 8 If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word has no place in our lives.
4. Justification: Justification means making clean and right with God. Rom 4:25...... He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification.
5. Righteousness: Once we are justified, we are made righteous. RO 3:22...... This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference.
6. Sanctification: Once you are made righteous you can be sanctified (protected and set aside) ICor 6:11…...And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.
7. Regeneration: After you are sanctified, the Holy Spirit gives you the power to have a new life in Christ. You are born again.
8. Born Again: Once we are sanctified, we are said to be saved or born again. John 3:3….. In reply Jesus declared, "I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again."
WHAT HAPPENS WHEN WE ARE SAVED?
1. We want to have a public display of our conversion. We should have a shameless testimony and a hunger to witness to others. This often includes water baptism.
2. We have a hunger for God’s word. This includes reading the Bible, attending church, and praying.
3. We feel that we have been given a new life. We think differently, treat others differently, and even treat ourselves differently. We are eager to enjoy the gift of a new life in Christ.
4. How do we know we are Christians?
a. 1 John 2:3-6…... We know that we have come to know him if we obey his commands. 4 The man who says, "I know him," but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in him. 5 But if anyone obeys his word, God's love is truly made complete in him. This is how we know we are in him: 6 Whoever claims to live in him must walk as Jesus did.
b. Peter tells us how our faith should grow after we are saved. 2 Peter 1:5-9….. For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; 6 and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; 7 and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love. 8 For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.
5. When we are saved, we receive the gifts of the spirit and the fruit of the Spirit. We will study these in the next lesson.
We analyzed salvation by breaking it down into 8 steps. God’s love and grace makes salvation available to everyone through his son who died on the cross. It should be noted that his name “Christ” means the anointed one and his name “Jesus” means salvation. All have sinned and are in need of salvation. We must have faith to repent of our sins and accept him as our Lord and savior. We then become slaves to righteousness. We have the power of the Holy Spirit to overcome the sinful life we had before. We receive the fruit of the spirit and the gifts of the spirit. We are also made holy and set aside as protected from Satan and given eternal live. Finally, we should live a new and better life.
1. What are some of the unscriptural ways people feel they can impress God and be saved?
2. How did Cain fail in his efforts to please God?
3. How did you feel when you were first saved? Can you compare it to falling in love?
4. Contrast salvation in the Old Testament with that of the New Testament.
5. How would you tell a non-believer how to be saved?
6. Discuss the qualities mentioned in 2 Peter 1:5-9 and how they should manifest themselves in our lives.
LIST OF SALVATION SCRIPTURES
1. JOHN 3: 16-18 GOD’S LOVE AND GRACE
2. Ephesians 2:8-9 GRACE, FAITH, AND SALVATION
3. Rom 3:22-26 ALL HAVE SINNED
4. 1 John 1:7-10 REPENTANCE
5. John 10:25-29 SALVATION ASSURED
6. Romans 3:27-31 FAITH MEASURED BY OBEDIENCE
7. John 2:3-6 ARE WE REALLY A CHRISTIAN?
8. JOHN 3:4-10 MEANING OF BEING BORN AGAIN
a. Mathew Henry’s commentary on 1 John 3:4-10…... That he cannot commit an act of sin, I suppose no judicious interpreter understands. This would be contrary to 1 John 1:9, where it is made our duty to confess our sins, and supposed that our privilege thereupon is to have our sins forgiven. He therefore cannot sin, in the sense in which the apostle says, he cannot commit sin. He cannot continue in the course and practice of sin. He cannot so sin as to denominate him a sinner in opposition to a saint or servant of God. Again, he cannot sin comparatively, as he did before he was born of God, and as others do that are not so. And the reason is because he is born of God, which will amount to all this inhibition and impediment. There is a light in his mind which shows him the evil and malignity of sin. There is that bias upon his heart which disposes him to loathe and hate sin.
9. Romans 6:15—18 SLAVES TO RIGHTEOUSNESS
10. Galatians 6:7-10 GIVING UP ON BEING A CHRISTIAN
11. James 1:22-25 DO NOT JUST LISTEN TO THE WORD
12. I Timothy 1:18—20 SHIPWRECKED FAITH OF HYMENAEUS
13. Hebrews 10:26—29 CHRISTIAN APOSTACY
a. Mathew Henry Commentary: The sin here mentioned is a total and final apostasy, when men with a full and fixed will and resolution despise and reject Christ, the only Savior, despise and resist the Spirit, the only sanctifier, and despise and renounce the gospel, the only way of salvation, and the words of eternal life; and all this after they have known, owned, and professed, the Christian religion, and continue to do so obstinately and maliciously. This is the great transgression: the apostle seems to refer to the law concerning presumptuous sinners, Num 15:30-31. They were to be cut off. (From Matthew Henry's Commentary on the Whole Bible: New Modern Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1991 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)
14. Hebrews 10:36—38 BACKSLIDERS DESTROYED
15. 1 John 2:1-6 OBEDIENCE REQUIRED
16. James 5:19-20 WANDERING FROM THE TRUTH
17. Jude 1:4-7 ANGELS LOST THEIR SALVATION
18. II Peter 2:19-22 THOSE WHO RETURN TO SIN
19. Gal 5:18-23 FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT
20. Rom 8:13-14 BE LEAD BY THE SPIRIT
21. Gal 5:13-14 FREEDOM WITH LIMITS
22. Rom 2:12-16 GENTILE LAW
23. 1 Cor 5:9-13 AVOID BAD CHRISTIANS
24. James 2:10-24 FAITH VERSES BELIEF
25. Luke 6:43-45 BAD FRUIT
26. Matthew 13:18-23 PARABLE OF THE SEEDS
27. Matthew 7:21-27 THE HOUSE UPON THE ROCK
28. Matt 12:30-32 THE UNFORGIVABLE
29. Rev 21:6-8 THE SECOND DEATH
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