What do I need to be saved
from? What is Salvation?
Why we need to show a need for Salvation?
Why do we need Salvation? What do you need to be saved from? I have often wondered this question and what goes through minds of people when they hear this. In order to understand salvation we first need to understand the need for a savior. Nobody would ever desire to be saved from something that they do not believe they need saving from. Let’s say I knocked on your door, and I said, “ I sold my house, emptied my children’s savings accounts and life savings and I am now practically homeless because I needed the money to buy you this yellow pill.” You would probably become confused, and maybe agitated that I knocked on your door with such foolishness and instead of looking at me as a hero, you probably see me as some crazy person. This is the reaction we often get from people when we are trying to explain Salvation to them. But what if I knocked on your door and said this: “Hi. My name is John and I am the assistant to the doctor that you saw last week. The results came back and you have a rare disease that only gives you 24 hours to live. The only chance of survival is by getting this yellow pill that cost $1 million dollars. But don’t worry, I sold my house, emptied my life savings and children’s savings and was able to obtain you the yellow pill. Here you go” Your reaction would no longer be one of confusion, anger, agitation etc…but probably be one of gratitude and thankfulness. The difference is that now you understand the need for the yellow pill. Without understanding the need for it, there would be no desire or appreciation of it.
Standards and Sins
So just like any good school there are different requirements to get in. It is much more easy and cost effective to get into a community college then it is to get into Harvard or Yale. There are different qualifications to get into different schools. I know we can agree that standards are a vital part of everyday life. We have (or at least should) have standards with relationships. If they meet your standards great, if not, they are out. Our jobs have certain standards we must obtain (some more strict then others), but if we don’t meet those standards then we will lose our jobs. We don’t get to choose the standards our jobs have, they standard is already laid out and it is up to us to meet them The same goes for Heaven and the Kingdom of God. There are standards that are laid out in order for us to get into Heaven. If we would like to get to heaven when we die, we need to meet the requirements God has for us to get in.
- You shall have no other gods before Me.
- You shall not make idols.
- You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain.
- Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.
- Honor your father and your mother.
- You shall not murder.
- You shall not commit adultery.
- You shall not steal.
- You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
- You shall not covet.
It is very obvious to see that when trying to compare our lives up to these standards, we fall short. It is very easy then to understand these verses:
Romans 3:23– For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard. James 2:10– For the person who keeps all of the laws except one is as guilty as a person who has broken all of God’s laws. Isaiah 64:6– For all of us have become like one who is unclean, And all our righteous deeds are like a filthy garment; And all of us wither like a leaf, And our iniquities, like the wind, take us away.
Sin– an immoral act considered to be a transgression against divine law. When we sin, we break the “law”. We do not live up to the standard God is expecting of us, which then means we disqualify ourselves from entering into heaven and the benefits of the Kingdom of God. The only way we can achieve all that God has for us is to uphold the standard He has laid out. If one of your standards in a relationship is for the other person to be faithful, and they cheat, they have sinned (broken a law or guideline) against you and a consequence may follow.
Consequence of a Sinful Nature
So now what? Why would God give us a standard that we could never keep? Why would God give us a standard that we could not keep, then judge us by not keeping it? Well, why don’t you just keep it? There is a simple list of things not to do, why do you continue to do it? You don’t want to? Because you think it is ridiculous? Or is it because you do not care? The very thing that will make your life unbelievable, is the very thing we continue to break on an everyday-daily basis. The very things you need to do to get all of your hearts desires are the very things you refuse to do and quite frankly are unable to do. You cheat on your wife, you may lose your marriage. If you just decide to not show up to work, you may get fired. If you speed, you may get a ticket. If you curse at someone, you may get into a fight. If you keep having loose sexual relationships, you may have a baby, get an STD, and be in many emotional roller coasters also known as DRAMA. “For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction”. So now what? God made a way! God made a way for you to get what you don’t deserve. He sees us struggling, hurting, tired…etc. He sees that we can not do this by ourselves. So God made a way…for me and for you! In the Old Testament when you broke the law, you had to make atonement for it. We have used this word before, but lets get a definition to it.
Atonement- reparation/reconciliation for a wrong or injury. In the Bible God had laid out a plan that if people would follow this plan, they would live an amazing and prosperous/healthy life. If we broke the plan then we would put ourselves in harms way and suffer possible consequences for breaking that. Once you have broken any of these rules, there needed to be atonement made. The same way if you were to break the law by speeding, and you got caught, you would have to make “atonement” by paying the fine. If you did not pay the fine, further consequences would then be expected. You had to get back in “good standing” with God by sacrificing your very best to reconcile yourself back to God. If you did not do this, you would be separated from God and His will for your life.
So how did God make a way? God did something so unthinkable, so unimaginable, so unbelievable to show how much He loves us! He took His son, His very own, and sent Him to the earth to die, as atonement for our sins! Can you believe that!?!? God sees us struggling and messing up because of things we continue not to do, and God wanted to make it easier and better for us. So He made a sacrifice on our behalf. He slained His very best, His son, and made a way for us that if we would just believe and put our faith in Jesus, we shall be saved from the consequences and judgements of our sin. A way to take our old sinful self, and make us perfect in the eyes of God. To blot out every evil deed we have ever done. That Jesus took the punishment, our deserving punishment, willingly, so that we would not suffer, but that we would prosper.
Acceptance of Atonement
2 Thessalonians 1:6– God is just: He will pay back trouble to those who trouble you.
The Bible states God is just and because God is just he must see to it that those who have broken the law get what they rightly deserve. A lot of times people ask, “If God is a loving God, then how could God send someone to hell?” That is like asking, “If you are a good parent, then how could you ground your child”. Or I hear this a lot, “If there is a God, then I will just talk to God when I get there and if He is a good God He will let me through.” Imagine this, you committed a crime and you were found guilty. All of the evidence was there and there was no shot of you getting off. Then the judge asks you, “Do you have anything to say for yourself”? You respond with, “Yes judge, I believe you are a good judge and that you will see my heart and let me go.” The judge responds, “You are right, I am a good judge and because I am a good judge I must see that punishment is given out for the crime that was committed. If I did not do this I would not be a good judge.” Then all of a sudden a stranger walks into the room and says to the judge,” Your honor, I would like to pay the price for this mans crime. Just let him go and I will take the punishment”. We are now presented with a choice. We can either accept what Christ has done for us and make Him the Lord of our life or we can choose to continue to go down our own road and reject a sacrifice that has already been made. A price that has already been paid. Salvation is so much more then a prayer, it’s an appointed moment. Salvation is our deliverance from the consequences of sin (which all of us do every day), and therefore involves the removal of it. Every sin we commit needs to be judged and either we can pay the price for them ourselves, or accept what Christ has already done. That is, He paid the price for us so that we don’t have to suffer, but LIVE. Sin has separated us from God and the consequence of sin is death. Do you want to live or do you want to die? Do you want God to see the old you of the new you? How powerful is the blood? Ohh there is power in the blood. How powerful the blood of Christ to wipe away every evil deed we have ever done. It is time to let our old self die, and live as a new person, a new creature. It’s there for the taking. A lot has been given for you to take it,but the choice of yours. So then how does one be “saved”. It is Repentance (change of mind) unto salvation.
Romans 10:8-11-But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart”—that is, the word of faith which we are preaching, 9 that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation. For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes in Him will not be disappointed.”
Benefits of Salvation
John 3:3- Jesus answered and said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.” Galations 5:16-24– 16 But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh. 17 For the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things that you please. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the Law.19 Now the deeds of the flesh are evident, which are: immorality, impurity, sensuality, 20 idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, 21 envying, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these, of which I forewarn you, just as I have forewarned you, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.24 Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.
Do any of these sound good for your life? Are these things you want to possess. These are God’s promises for your life if you will commit your life to Him and trust Him all the days of your life. God wants to bless you and your life so much that you can not even contain it, but it is your choice. Salvation is there for you. To be saved from a life of constant defeat to a life of victory. To be saved from being judged by our sin, to being judged by our purpose. Psalm 34:8- Taste and see that the LORD is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him.