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13These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life.

(1 John 5:13 NASB )

Salvation: What is it?


sal•va•tion   (sal vâ/shen), n. [ME. salvacioun; OFr. sauvation; L. salvatio < salvatus, pp. of salvare, to save], 1. a saving or being saved; preservation from destruction; rescue. 2. a person or thing which is a means, cause, or source of preservation or rescue. 3. in theology, spiritual rescue from sin and death; saving of the soul through the atonement of Jesus; redemption.

In Christian doctrine, salvation is a rescue or deliverance of humanity from a specific condition and from a specific destination. Salvation presumes that there is a danger, jeopardy, peril or life threatening hazard from which rescue must be accomplished on an imminent basis.

The CONDITION from which humanity must be rescued:

  1. Separation from the God of humanity.
  2. Such separation from God occasioned by the sinful actions of all humanity (by disobeying and ignoring the commands of God).

The DESTINATION from which humanity must be rescued:

  1. The sinful human actions necessitate that God pronounce a judgment on all humanity as a punishment for those actions taken.
  2. Such punishment being separation from God and assignment in company with Satan and all his followers in the region of Hell.
  3. Such assignment to be eternal in nature never to be reconsidered, changed or revoked.


All sin is an affront to God — regardless of how it was committed or against whom — and is at its root total rebellion against God and is ultimately a sin committed against God. As a consequence, repentance and confession of offenses committed are required by God and are necessary so that the full significance and gravity regarding the serious nature of the offense(s) can be understood. Repentance is not simply saying, “I’m sorry,” because words come very cheap.

Repentance means to turn around; it implies a reversal of course or of action. True repentance demands actions indicating that the person has turned in the opposite direction from the sins committed.

30 “Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, each according to his conduct,” declares the Lord GOD. “Repent and turn away from all your transgressions, so that iniquity may not become a stumbling block to you.

31 “Cast away from you all your transgressions which you have committed and make yourselves a new heart and a new spirit! For why will you die, O house of Israel?

32 “For I have no pleasure in the death of anyone who dies,” declares the Lord GOD. “Therefore, repent and live.”

(Ezekiel 18:30-32 NASB)

7 But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming for baptism, he said to them, “You brood of vipers, who warned you to flee from the wrath to come?

8 “Therefore bear fruit in keeping with repentance;

9 and do not suppose that you can say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham for our father’; for I say to you that from these stones God is able to raise up children to Abraham.

(Matthew 3:7-9 NASB)

Repentance also carries with it a condition of true remorse and regret, not just because of the consequences of the sin, but because it was committed against God. This expression of remorse reaches to the core of a person’s being.

10 For the sorrow that is according to the will of God produces a repentance without regret, leading to salvation, but the sorrow of the world produces death.

11 For behold what earnestness this very thing, this godly sorrow, has produced in you: what vindication of yourselves, what indignation, what fear, what longing, what zeal, what avenging of wrong! In everything you demonstrated yourselves to be innocent in the matter.

(2 Corinthians 7:10-11 NASB)

Repentance involves an act of obedience and an agreement with God regarding the necessity of Repentance. It involves a response from the innermost being of a person, a sorrow that involves regret for the commission of the sin itself — not just the negative results of that sin. It involves an action that signifies the validity and truthfulness of God’s Word. Therefore, Repentance is a total rejection of the sin committed.

13 He who conceals his transgressions will not prosper, But he who confesses and forsakes them will find compassion.  

(Proverbs 28:13 NASB)

3 When I kept silent about my sin, my body wasted away Through my groaning all day long.
4 For day and night Your hand was heavy upon me; My vitality was drained away as with the fever heat of summer. Selah.
5 I acknowledged my sin to You, And my iniquity I did not hide; I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the LORD;” And You forgave the guilt of my sin. Selah.

(Psalm 32:3-5 NASB)

On what basis are Confession and Repentance made? How do these elements bring a person closer to appropriation of the benefits inherent in the Atonement?

The benefits are appropriated through the gift of Faith that is given from God. It is repentance that brings the person to a position of submission to God and a realization that separation from God is a reality and that reconciliation is not possible through human effort.

It is through repentance that a person understands that only by pleading to the grace of God can a standing before God be obtained.

Repentance is the preparation that leads to faith and the resultant application of the benefits provided through the Atonement of Jesus Christ. Faith involves a knowledge of the claims of Jesus Christ Who is the object; an agreement as to the validity of those claims; and an appropriation of those claims into the life of the person.

  • Regardless of nationality, position or condition, sinners are called to repentance (Acts 5:31; 20:21; 26:20; Matthew 9:13; Luke 15:17,19; 24:47; II Peter 3:9).
  • Saving repentance is the sinner’s forsaking of his own ways and his full surrender to Christ’s lordship over his life.
  • Saving repentance forsakes pride and acknowledges a need for Christ’s lordship in his life.
  • Repentance is not something the sinner must do to win God’s compassion. It is no prolonged agony of soul, but a repentance to the acknowledging of the Truth (II Timothy 2:24- 25).
  • Repentance ushers in pardon for the sinner; it makes way for God’s pardoning grace (Acts 5:31).
  • When David was humbled and broken because of his sin, Nathan said, “The Lord hath put away thy sin” (II Samuel 12:13). Pardon is the richest of blessings for the repentant, believing sinner.


God is absolutely sovereign in salvation. We do not deserve salvation and can do nothing to earn our salvation. It is by His grace. Grace is unmerited favor. Our salvation is established by God’s election of sinners to salvation through Christ. Scripture teaches that Jesus Christ is the sole and sufficient Savior and that salvation comes only on the basis of His blood Atonement. The Bible teaches a dual eternal destiny – the redeemed to Heaven, the unredeemed to Hell.

To summarize: Salvation is not a result of the will of man. It is not a result of the merit of man. It is not a result of some religious sacrifice on man’s part. It is not a result of the love of man. It is not a result of the good intentions of man. It is not a result of the purpose of man. And it is not to the praise and glory of man. Every aspect of salvation is born out of the purpose and the will and the plan of God that when it is accomplished it may be solely and only to the praise and the glory of God. God has saved us in order that He might be glorified — therefore all in our salvation belongs to His credit.

8For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God;

9not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.

(Ephesians 2:8-9 NASB)

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Before you can speak peace to your troubled heart and hurting Marriage, you must not only be convinced of your actual and original sin, the sins of your own unrighteousness, the sin of unbelief, but you must be enabled to lay hold upon the Perfect Righteousness, the all-sufficient Righteousness, of the Lord Jesus Christ; you must lay hold by faith on the Righteousness of Jesus Christ, and then you shall have peace.

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A faith which refuses to obey the commands of the Savior is a mere pretence and will never save the soul.

–Charles Spurgeon

If the one who professes Christ as Savior and Lord in his life has no desire for holiness and the things of God, it is doubtful that he is saved.


Some things need only to be believed before they can be seen. 


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 (Some material from this particular post is taken directly from http://www.ondoctrine.com/)

© 2009 Celia Ann. All rights reserved by Celia Ann and The Ephesian Marriage unless otherwise stated. All other symbols are the trademark of their respective owners.