While sitting in McDonald’s a while ago, an elderly gentleman asked me, “Are you saved?” Since I live in the South now, this shouldn’t surprise me. One often hears conversations about church, theology, Christianity, or the hot new Christian book or program. Church members are often taught that the best way to live the Christian life is to be a “witness.” Thus, the question. I see a problem behind the question, however – a very narrow view of salvation. So, I’ve spent a few posts on “salvation.”[featured-image single_newwindow=”false”]
Basically, salvation means preservation or deliverance from harm, ruin, or loss. In Christianity, it is usually understood as the act of saving someone from sin or evil. The point I’m trying to make is that salvation is the person of Jesus Christ (called “salvation” by Simeon).
The Apostle Paul writes that…
“…we shall be saved through him from the wrath” (Romans 5.9)
“…we shall be saved by his life” (Romans 5.10).
Do not overlook the significant prepositional phrases, “by his life” and “through him.” St. Paul is clear that salvation can only take place in relationship to Jesus Christ.
Jesus Christ IS salvation.
A Few Implications
- Jesus Christ is the source of all life-giving deliverance. This may be physical, emotional, relational, or spiritual deliverance. Those “in Christ” have a distinct advantage towards freedom since their Source is and has all power to save. Remember, the deliverance may not be as you expect.
- You are always being saved. Salvation in Christ is an ongoing movement within you. You are in constant need of deliverance from self, sinning, and your passions. Jesus is right there to ready to deliver you.
- Salvation is nothing you bring about. You receive salvation and participate in it. Christ as Salvation is living and active already. You are carried into His life and activity through faith by His grace. You may think it was up to you to decide to “get saved.” Don’t discount the mysterious work of salvation that was already at work in you before Salvation swept you off your feet.
- Being saved is being in Christ. Salvation is not just about getting into heaven. Salvation is about BEING in Christ who lives now and forever. Being in Christ is heaven on earth and earth in heaven. In Christ, the Kingdom is always now. Salvation is about all of life right now not just the prospect of pearly gates, golden streets, and mansions.
- Salvation is more about what you’re saved to than what you’re saved from. There’s something wrong if a person rescued from a burning house keeps replaying that scene in their mind and conversations as if that’s the only thing that’s happened in their life. There is a life to be lived. Salvation in Christ allows you freedom to live deeply into His life. Journey forward.
- All that happens to you is for your salvation. In other words, all that happens to you is for your fuller participation in Jesus Christ. Your life situations may look hopeless and difficult to you. However, God is simply making your salvation possible by these means in order to save you from yourself and for you to seek salvation in Him.
- You are now enabled to pursue God with all your heart, mind, and body. Salvation provides all you need for godliness, goodness, and a beautiful life. You can defeat enemies. You can love people. You can find joy in suffering. You can see more clearly. You can experience the Triune God’s life operating in your life and find your life joined in God’s life.
Salvation is OF God
The Psalmist David knew salvation was of God. Hear him proclaim:
The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? (Psalm 27.1) The whole Psalm is a glorious rehearsal of all that is ours in God’s Salvation.
For God alone my soul waits in silence; from him comes my salvation. He only is my rock and my salvation, my fortress, I shall not be greatly shaken. (Psalm 62.1) Again, this Psalm describes what is ours in salvation.
There is more to salvation than we realize. Let us – you and me – experience Salvation more fully every day.
How are you experiencing Jesus Christ as Salvation described above? Share below.