We have two questions we want to ask you:
How are we saved?
What are we saved for?
Have you been or have you heard someone say, "How am I saved and what do I do?"
Let us be clear... being saved and what you do after is more than raising your hand when asked if you want to accept Christ as your savior and then attending Sunday service every Sunday morning.
Let us be clear again... while these are important things we want to break down what being saved and saved for what truly means.
Back to the two questions presented.
These are two critical questions and something many people seem to differ on. So, let's dive into the first question:
How are we saved?
God saves us through the sufficient sacrifice of Jesus Christ, who offered to accept the penalty due to us on the cross. The salvation offered to us by God can be explained as a three-step process:
1. Justification - is legal terminology that describes the process of being made right, or declared innocent, in a legal proceeding. This is a process that occurs once in the life of a believer. Upon believing in Jesus Christ and accepting Him as our defense attorney, Christ extends to us all the grace and mercy of God the Father. While we, of course, will continue to struggle with sin and will offend God, our name will be written place permanently in the Book of Life that Scripture describes.
For All Have Sinned
23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, 25 whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith. This was to show God's righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins.
2. Sanctification - The process of gradually moving from being controlled by the natural man to being spiritually minded men is called sanctification. Sanctification has to do with being made holy, or in other words, being set apart. The Bible describes followers of Christ as being in the world, but not a part of it. Our purpose as Christians is unique, and distinct from all other human beings who do not identify with Christ and His justifying work of death and resurrection.
I Thessalonians 5:22-24
Abstain From Every Form of Evil
Abstain from every form of evil. Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. He who calls you is faithful; he will surely do it.
3. Glorification - The final stage of salvation ultimately occurs when our hope and faith are consummated, and we are awarded what we have been promised. For the follower of Christ, this transpires at the moment we experienced physical death and ushered into eternity, being united with God the Father through the justifying love of Jesus Christ.
This leads us to the second question:
What are we saved for?
The answer to this question is clearly answered in Scripture. We are saved for OUR good and for HIS glory.
We are saved:
As the Israelites lost sight of their destination (the Promised Land), the Christian pilgrimage through sanctification requires continually re-orientation to keep us anxiously and joyfully marching towards GLORY. This perspective of moving towards the glorification stage of our salvation keeps us resolute in times when our faith is under fire. Consider and meditate on these words of the Apostle Paul:
II Corinthians 4:16-18
So We Do Not Lose Heart
So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.
Have you accepted Christ as your savior? Do you have more questions about a life lived for Christ? Do you want to discuss these topics more in-depth?
Yes?! Great! We encourage you to first seek out your pastor or elder at your local church. These people exist in your congregation (body of the church) for this sole purpose.
FPAM is a parachurch ministry. We exist not to replace the local church but to support it. If you feel comfortable with one of our chapter leaders or board members, please reach out to them and together they or we can explore these topics and work together to get you plugged in at your local church.
Live for His glory... Succeed for His kingdom!
Diving Deeper - Our Path Forward
Diving Deeper introduces material in coordination with our blog post so the reader can dive deeper into the topic.
The Diving Deeper for this post comes from the book Evangelism authored by J. Mack Stiles a series of book from 9Marks on Building Healthier Churches.
Download Actually Sharing Our Faith and take the time to investigate what God's path forward for you looks like