THE NEED FOR SALVATION REVISITED


So you stumbled! Perhaps you fell? It’s okay, just remember “Salvation is the only way to avoid Hell.”

Blog Content The Need for Salvation Paper 10/21/2016

Denise Thornton

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Theological Terms Response  

Denise Thornton 

Ohio Christian University 

Professor Thaddeus Hicks 

The Need for Salvation 

Paul declared in Acts 20:27, “For I did not shrink back from declaring to you the whole will of God.” Here Paul is making it clear to the flock that they have no excuse to sin because he taught them how to avoid yielding to temptation. However, Paul knows the flesh is weak, meaning there will be instances of sin creating the imminent need for salvation.  

The need for salvation resonates boldly in these modern times. Perhaps it is more obvious today than ever before that people cannot save themselves, due to heavy indulgence of corrosive carnal behavior, fueled by imperfections of the flesh, and spiritual deficiencies that only God can cover. 

Without God’s grace salvation is not possible.” The bottom line is “good deeds do not cancel out sin or make black souls of sinners white as snow, only God can do that.”  

While a constant need for salvation will always exist in the world, that salvation is only possible through God’s grace. In other words, salvation is a gift that cannot be earned, purchased or brought into existence by man.   

For those who believe in error, that church membership and salvation are simultaneous, perhaps it is time to review God’s word again.  

The Baptism of the Holy Spirit 

A great preacher, Pusey, once said that one of the greatest surprises of heaven will be our amazement at the number of ways in which we insult the divine grace and grieve the spirit of God. The baptism of the Holy Spirit occurs in the instance of salvation when the Spirit of God unites believers with Christ and other believers in the body of Christ. The scripture confirms that “in one Spirit we were all baptized in one Body-Jews or Greeks, slaves or free–and all were made to drink of one Spirit. 1 Corinthians 12, strongly suggests that all men and women, regardless of race, creed, color or class are invited and encouraged to come to Christ, just as they are. Unlike humans, the Holy Spirit does not discriminate. John the Baptist predicted the Baptism of the Holy Spirit which came to pass on the Day of Pentecost, upon when baptizing with water. This was the original day that the Israelites experienced the baptism of the Holy Spirit. The Day of Pentecost also marks the beginning of the church. The bible says “we are all baptized into one body, whether Jews or Greeks, slave or free, and we were all given one Spirit to drink.” (1 Corinthians 12:130. The baptism of the Holy Spirit is available to all who believe in God and receive His teachings. Every believer has been baptized by the Holy Spirit, at the exact same time salvation occurred, some Christians seem to forget that.

Baptism of the Holy Spirit marries believers to the body of Christ while bringing about a human realization and legitimacy of His divine sacrifice. We are one, which takes on new meaning when one is baptized in the Holy Spirit because the undertaking signifies spiritual rebirth. Jesus bore our sins and became the ultimate ransom so that His father could forgive, redeem and one day baptize his children in the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit and eternal life are available to all who give their life to Christ.

Like salvation, it is impossible and inconceivable to earn “For it is you have been saved through faith, and this not from yourselves: it is the gift of God.” Ephesians 2:8

The Concept of Sin 

“Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned.” Romans 5:12 ESV   

There are three types of sin according to the bible; inherited sin, imputed sin, and personal sin. Inherited sin is sin that is passed on to future generations. Imputed sin occurs when one takes something that belongs to someone and credits it to another’s account.” Personal sin is self-explanatory; that which is committed every day by every human being. Regardless of the type of sin,penalties apply. ` 

 [Through Adam, the inherent inclination to sin entered the human race, and human beings became sinners by nature. When Adam sinned, his inner nature was transformed by his sin of rebellion, bringing to him spiritual death and depravity which would be passed on to all who came after him.] “What is the definition of sin” (n.d.). Retrieved {August 29, 2016] from http://www.gotquestions.org/definition-sin.html 

In 1 John 3:4, the Bible describes Sin as ‘transgression of the law of God and in Deuteronomy 9:7 Sin is characterized as a rebellion against God. The law of God is the Ten Commandments, and no human perfectly obeys them all. However, sin is not new to this world, it began with one of God’s most wonderful angels “Lucifer.” Although Lucifer had a wonderful life he wanted more.

Lucifer’s story is the first example of the old saying, “the more man acquires the more he desires.” Eve and later Adam, came to suffer the same affliction, eventually falling victim to Satan’s, “previously Lucifer’s” self-inflicted sinful nature. Like Lucifer, Adam and Eve had everything any human could ever want or need, yet, Eve wanted more. She allowed the serpent/ Satan to tempt her, by making her think God was holding out.

The temptation of what that tree could offer overtook their divine allegiance to God. When Adam and Eve ate from the Tree of life they committed the first and greatest sin on earth, coupled with exhibiting a spirit of rebelliousness. Ever since then, sin has been passed down through all the descendants of Adam.  A spirit of discontentedness is only one element of sin, but it may be the epitome of ungratefulness and isespecially common among the rich.  

“Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the kingdom of God.” When the disciples heard this, they were greatly astonished, saying, “Who then can be saved?” Matthew 19: 24-25 The difficulty is not due to having riches. The problem lies with allowing money to separate oneself from God by trusting in wealth instead of depending on God. Sin begins to manifest in the heart once it turns away from God.  

It is no wonder the first of the Lord’s Ten Commandments is: “You shall have no other God’s before me?” Because God is a jealous God, He insists that believers make him the Head and not the tail. Practicing obedience is the best way to avoid overindulging in habitual sin. Knowing, internalizing, and embracing God’s Word is the most effective weapon in the world for battling sin. “Everyone who makes a practice of sin also practices lawlessness.” 1 John 3:4 

We can also take comfort in knowing that God the Father, knows His sheep, their shortcomings, and susceptibility to committing sin. For that reason, He assigns keepers of the flock. These chosen men and women are appointed to be fishermen, leaders by examples, and teachers of the Word. They imply living proof that while living a perfect life free of sin is not possible, living a Godly life is. Grace takes over where the desire to sin ends.  

Conclusion 

Accepting Jesus Christ as Head in my life was the most powerful life-altering decision I have ever made. Before I was saved, my understanding of the concept of sin equated to no understanding at all.

Like many sinners, I lived in denial, basically only acknowledging hand-picked personal sins. Sins that caused too much pain or embarrassment to address often escaped critical review.

Even though I am a new creature in Christ, I am not where I want to be, but I am happy to say that I am better than I used to be, spiritually, emotionally, and physically.

What keeps me hopeful is knowing “All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God” Therefore, if there is hope for them there is hope for me because everybody sins. Romans 3:23

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