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The Daily Word of Righteousness
Your Role in Your Salvation
Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made your good confession in the presence of many witnesses. (I Timothy 6:12—NIV)
The plan of salvation came from God. It is a sovereign program, so sovereign that the very names of the elect were announced at the time the world was created.
We did not choose Christ. He chose us. No person can come to Christ unless the Father draws him or her.
No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him, and I will raise him up at the last day. (John 6:44—NIV)
There are several passages of the New Testament that emphasize the sovereignty of God in the plan of salvation, the Divine predestining that operates in terms of God's foreknowledge.
Because of the clear teaching of God's sovereign actions in our salvation there often is a tendency to overemphasize God's role in redeeming us. Sometimes belief or praise apart from any effort on our part are presented as our sole responsibility. While belief and praise are very important, it cannot be maintained from the New Testament that these are our sole actions in responding to the plan of salvation.
Perhaps we need to take a look at our role in our salvation.
There are several Divine objectives for the plan of salvation. The New Testament tells us what we must do to attain each of the objectives. It may be noted that God is the one who stated the objectives and has given the plan and the necessary virtue, wisdom and power for the attainment of the objectives. But in every case there is something we must do if we are to achieve the objectives God has set for us.
The central purpose of the two thousand years of the history of the Christian Church is to prepare a Body for the Head, Jesus Christ. The Body is the Church, the Wife of the Lamb, the new Jerusalem.
It is the preparation of the Body that is of concern in the present hour. Christ—Head and Body—will one day appear, drive Satan and his works from the earth, and install the Kingdom of God. This is God's plan of salvation for mankind. But, obviously, each member of the Body must be prepared to return with the Lord.
Each member of the Body must be delivered from love for and trust in the spirit of the world.
Each member of the Body must be delivered from the lusts and passions of the flesh and soul.
Each member of the Body must be delivered from all self-will and disobedience to the will of God.
Each member of the Body must have Christ formed in him, thus being made the eternal dwelling place of the Father and the Son.
Each member of the Body must be in the moral image of Christ.
Each member of the Body must be dwelling in untroubled rest in Christ in God.
No person of whom the above is not true is prepared to return with Jesus Christ and drive Satan from the earth. He still is part of the problem, not of the solution.
To be continued.