The Doctrine of Our Salvation by Lance Brien
This has been yet another great week in the Immersion program, full of fun, fellowship and really good teaching! Although I could tell you of all the great dinners, conversations, and Scripture reading that we’ve done, what I want to focus on for this post is the doctrine of our salvation according to the New Testament. This is what we were taught by Ryan Francis last week. I feel that this subject is essential for every Christian to know and understand.
First, we must realize that even though we are sinners, God chooses to save us. God makes the decision to choose. And He chooses who He chooses. We, as creation, have no place in questioning the creator. Romans 8:9 says, But who are you, O man, to answer back to God? Will what is molded say to its molder, “Why have you made me like this?”
I think a better question is, how does a dead man respond? Because we were dead in our sin, as Ephesians 2:1 tells us And you were dead in the trespasses and sins.
And unlike popular TV shows, dead men don’t walk. Dead men do nothing. So, since man is unable to do anything, the first issue isn’t figuring out how should we respond to the call of the Lord, but how does one go from being dead to being alive? Well, Ephesians 2:5 as the answer:[God] …made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved.
Some people like to image that we, as sinners, were lost of in a sea of our sin, drowning in an ocean that stretches to infinity in all directions. We believe that as we are floating on the surface Jesus, out of nowhere, throws us a life-line that we grab and hold fast to as He reels us into the safety of His arms. But, this is not what we see in Scripture. The Bible makes it very clear that we are not drowning in a sea of sin. We’ve already drowned in it and are at the sea floor of this infinite ocean. Man was born spiritually dead, it’s not something we work our way into. This is what makes the Gospel truth of regeneration so beautiful. Christ doesn’t throw us a life-line, He swam to the depths of our death and brought us up to life, so that we may walk on dry ground.
Just one verse back, in Ephesians 2:4-6,we see this:
But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ-by grace you have been saved- and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus.
Our salvation is only ours because it was gifted to us. The act of God that took me from spiritual death to spiritual life was so powerful that I only had one possible response: accepting the gift of grace. Now, God views me through Christ. His righteousness covers my sin; and I strive to be continually sanctified, not because I need to attribute to my salvation, but because I love Him too. And He is deserving of the Glory.