By Jun P. Espina | Last updated on March 20th, 2020 at 09:56 am
Free Salvation Offered
Why talk about Jesus Christ and what to believe in Him? In this article, I want to point out our souls’ salvation from God’s wrath through faith alone. True, Christ limits His free-salvation offer only to those who believe in His atoning death on the cross. Some think the formula to live eternally is faith in Christ plus church membership, baptism, and other types of moral duty. Concerning good works, the apostle Paul declared that it is the result, and not the cause of salvation. Doing a charitable endeavor, therefore, such as giving money to feed the poor cannot clean and forgive the guilt of a sinful soul. “I am the door,” taught our Lord Jesus, “if anyone enters through Me, he will be saved.” (John 10:9) We are not the “door” to heaven; Christ is!
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I want to quote from Ephesians 2:8-10 (NASB):
Study verse 9 of this Scripture where it says that salvation is not related to doing some duties of religion as it would only make one boastful. In the succeeding verse (10), however, it says that we are His workmanship [God’s masterpiece, NLT], created in Christ Jesus for good works. We need to do good as real Christians (also known scripturally as God’s redeemed people) better than the unsaved humanity. It is written in the book of Hebrews that God equips “you in every good thing to do His will.” Living the godly and biblical life, therefore, is not impossible since God will equip us to do what’s pleasing to Him.
Going back to our thesis, we maintain that the obedience to the Ten Commandments, for example, cannot save a soul from the mouth of hell since the biblical path to salvation is faith in the Savior alone. Jesus Christ is the Forgiver of sin and the only Way to heaven. (cf. Acts 4:12) The teaching of the Holy Bible, allow us to reiterate, is a free salvation provided to everyone. Our role is to accept or reject it. (cf. John 3:36) After receiving the Second Birth (cf. John 3:1-8) by faith, then God’s Spirit will help us live the life that is pleasing to our Father God. (see: Gal. 6:1)
Free Salvation Offered to Believers Only
What surprises me most is our complete blindness or devil-may-care attitude to our eternal destiny (the salvation of our soul). Why don’t most of us (myself included before I followed Christ!) want to take the truth eagerly about the free salvation offered by God to the entire human race through trusting in His Son, our Lord Jesus Christ?
Before I became a born-again Christian, I thought that life is nothing more than birth, old age, and then death. I didn’t know that my soul is immortal and that on account of my sins I would live forever in the lake of fire—for “the soul that sinneth, it shall die”! (Ezek. 18:20)
What must I do then to be saved, since I am sinful at birth, for “I was born a sinner—yes, from the moment my mother conceived me.” (Psalm 51:5, NLT) We find the same query from Acts 16:30-31. Our soul is immortal and deathless; therefore we need to be saved from God’s judgment since we have wicked hearts naturally. And the free salvation given by God is the only logical and biblical method to trust. Our good works cannot save us. For . . . whoever believes in Him . . . have eternal life. God gave to us His Son, Jesus Christ, our Savior, so that we wouldn’t perish in His judgment. We would be saved from hell if we would believe in His free salvation offered to us through trusting in His Son’s blood.
According to the Holy Scriptures, God offered this free salvation only to “whoever believes in Him” [Christ].
No Other Method to Receive Salvation
How to be saved from God’s wrath? It is the query of the Philippian jailer mentioned in Acts 16:30-31—over 2000 years ago.
One of the thieves who was crucified with Christ told the Lord these words: “Jesus, remember me when You come in Your kingdom!” (Luke 23:42). Nine words of faith were enough to catapult him into heaven. Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, for He is our Savior and Lord, the forgiver of our sins. The Bible says that salvation is of the Lord. God saved Noah, for instance, from the flood and Daniel from the lions. Yes, the free salvation granted by God is the only scriptural method to be saved since God said “I am the LORD, that is My name; I will not give My glory to another.” (Isa. 42:8) Self-glorification such as doing something pleasing to God is not the Bible plan for anyone to become a real child and inheritor of the everlasting life. In man’s salvation from hell-judgment, God wants to get the glory. (“I will not give my glory to another,” He said.)
Why Can’t We be Saved Through our Good Works?
We usually think, in our ignorance and lack of Scripture, that salvation is obtained through our efforts. All religions that are not God’s fall on the same basic good works theology. The proponents of this persuasion also known as the Armenians typically use Matthew 24:13 (among other verses) to support their do-something-to-be-saved teaching. It says that “the one who endures to the end, he will be saved.” Sadly, Matthew 24 is about the coming Great Tribulation or that the “end” mentioned refers to the end of the Tribulation Period. Thus, it has nothing to do with the salvation of our souls. Those who would “endure” might even be unbelievers of Christ.
I believe, however, that we need to do something to receive our salvation from hell. What is it? It is to trust Christ’s substitutionary death and in His resurrection since the forgiveness of our souls happens only after receiving the Gospel by faith. “Believe the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved.”
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Perhaps you have also uttered this unscriptural conviction before that if “you have won your neighbor by doing good, you have won God.” But no man, in his fallen state, can ever win the heart of God no matter how faultless, humble and kind he appears to be. We cannot win God’s favor by ourselves. We need the blood of His Son for in Christ alone “we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace.” (Eph. 1:7) Second, the apostle Paul also taught that “there is one God, and one mediator also between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.” (I Tim. 2:5)
We are sinners naturally, and God is so holy that no man can approach His light without a savior, without Christ’s Spirit in our soul whom we received by faith.
We need, therefore, to believe in our Lord Jesus Christ if we want to be saved from sin and hell and live forever in heaven. The free salvation offered by God is the biblical method to enter the blissful eternity. The man-made theological teachings are nothing more than a circle on good works invented and reinvented with the supreme goal of giving glory to man, the creature, rather than our Creator God and Christ Jesus, our Lord and Savior.
Free Salvation Offered Through Faith in Christ.
The apostle Paul said that one needs to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ if one wishes to be saved. The typical question is on what to believe in Him. The thief on the cross did just say, “Jesus, remember me when You come in Your kingdom!” What has made such a declaration of faith so pleasing to God? Well, it’s all about the unseen things; that Jesus is going to be King in His own kingdom even though He was yet dying on the cross.
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That thief went to heaven without baptism, tithe-giving, or church membership. C. H. Spurgeon once said that we always need to observe the “duties of religion” but only after experiencing the Second Birth through faith in Christ.
Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ if you want the full salvation of your soul from God’s judgment. It was the message of Paul and Silas to the Philippian jailer mentioned above.