The First Step to Happiness---Be
Saved and Know It
people are actually frightened when they hear Christians use the
word “saved”. It has been said to me, “One of the reasons that
some educated people will not attend Bible preaching churches is
because you talk so much about being ‘saved’. We have gone to
church most of our lives and never heard the word saved. What do
you mean by that word?”
There is no reason for any sincere person to become ill at ease
when they hear Christians use the word “saved”. It is a good
Bible word referring to the condition enjoyed by every genuine
Christian. The word “saved” in the Bible means “delivered” and
“preserved”. It describes what happens when God translates a
sinner from the realm of the lost into the realm of the saved.
Here are some
examples: In Acts 2:21, Peter preached at Pentecost, “…Whoever
calls on the name of the Lord shall be ‘saved.” This
quotation from Joel 2:13 is also quoted in Romans 10:13. In Acts
2:47 we read, “…And the Lord added to the church daily those
who were being saved”. In Acts 4:12, Peter preached to
the religious leaders of Israel, “Nor is there salvation in any
other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by
which we must be saved”.
Paul told the jailer in Philippi (Acts 16:31) “Believe on the
Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your
household.” 1st Corinthians 1:18 declares, “For
the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are
perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of
God.” And Ephesians 2:8 informs us: “For by grace you
have been saved through faith…”
In all the
word “saved” appears fifty-seven times in the New Testament. It
is truly amazing that there are multitudes of church members who
have attended their churches regularly for years and have never
heard the word “saved” used from the pulpit.
ENJOY A FOUR-FOLD SALVATION
FROM THE PENALTY OF SIN.
The penalty of
sin is physical and spiritual death. “The wages of sin is
death...” (Romans 6:23). Physical death comes when the soul
and spirit separate from the body. Spiritual death describes the
condition of a lost sinner whose body, soul, and spirit are
separated from the spiritual life that comes from God. If a
sinner dies physically in his lost condition he will be separated
forever from God in a place of torment.
provided for mankind to receive the forgiveness of their sins
through the sacrificial death of His Son Jesus on the cross.
Jesus was prophesied from the beginning of time to be the Savior
of souls by His sacrifice.
animals slain in sacrifice provided a covering for Adam and Eve
that made them acceptable in God’s presence. The sacrifice that
made Abel acceptable before the Lord was a slain lamb. Noah,
Abraham, Job and Jacob were notable for their sacrifices which
expressed their faith in a coming Redeemer Who would abolish sins
by a sacrificial death.
The lamb slain
on the Day of Passover and the goats slain on the Day of Atonement
pictured how the innocent Lamb of God would receive the punishment
for the sins of His people. In fact, every sacrifice of the Old
Testament pointed to the remission of mankind’s sin and privileges
of salvation through the sacrificial death of Christ.
statement on the sacrificial work of Christ in the Old Testament
is Isaiah 53. Isaiah 53:5, 6 proclaims: “But He was wounded
for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the
chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are
healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; We have turned, every
one, to his own way; And the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of
Baptist, the God ordained forerunner of Jesus, introduced Him
thus; “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the
world!” John 1:29. The New Testament gospel message is that
Christ died to save us from the penalty of sin. “Christ died
for the ungodly” (Romans 5:6); “Christ died for us”
(Romans 5:8); “For He (God) made Him (Jesus) who
knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the
righteousness of God in Him” (2nd Corinthians
5:21); “…That He, by the grace of God, might taste death for
everyone.” (Hebrews 2:9); “Who Himself bore our sins in His
own body on the tree,…”(1st Peter 2:24); “For
Christ also suffered once for sins, the just for the unjust, that
He might bring us to God…” (1st Peter 3:18).
When a sinner
is saved from the penalty of sin he enjoys wonderful peace of
heart because he has peace with God. He knows that God’s wrath
against him for sin has been satisfied through the death of
Christ. “Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have
peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.” (Romans 5:1).
SAVED FROM THE POWER OF SIN.
must trust Jesus to save him from sin’s power as well as sin’s
penalty. The Angel of the Lord affirmed this when he told Joseph,
“…And you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His
people from their sins.” (Matthew 1:21)
The chains of
sin so powerfully bind the lost man and woman that they are a
slave to sin’s power. Jesus said, “…Whoever commits sin is a
slave of sin.” (John 8:43). Thank God, He went on to state,
“If the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed.”
(John 8:36). Jesus not only cancels the condemnation but He also
breaks sin’s fetters, delivers the sinner from the dungeon and
sets him at liberty. He saves from the power of sin.\
FROM THE PITFALLS OF SIN.
the need of a reliable guide to take them safely through the
perils of the future. For this they are confiding in everything
from fortune tellers to computers. Jesus is the only safe Guide
through life. He is God. He spoke the Words of God. By teaching
and example He has revealed the safe pathway of life. “I am
the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in
darkness, but have the light of life.” (John 8:12).
trust themselves to chart their life’s course are bound for
certain disaster. “There is a way that seems right to a man,
but its end is the way of death.” (Proverbs 14:12). The
Scriptures relate the story of several men who did this who came
to a tragic end: Cain, Lot, Pharaoh, Samson, Saul, and Judas are
SOMEDAY FROM THE PRESENCE OF SIN.
given the promise that those He saves will spend eternity with
Him. (John 14:2b, 3). “I go to prepare a place for you. And
if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive
you to Myself: that where I am, there you may be also.”
If the body of
the Christian sleeps in the grave, then Jesus will raise the
body. “Do not marvel at this; for the hour is coming in which
all who are in the graves will hear His voice and come
forth---those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and
those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation.”
(John 5:28, 29).
Christian is still living when Jesus comes, then Jesus will change
his body. “Behold, I tell you a mystery; We shall not all
sleep, but we shall all be changed---in a moment, in the twinkling
of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and
the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.”
(1st Corinthians 15:51, 52.). The Christian’s
glorified body shall be forever rid of the sin nature. His body
shall be just like the body of Jesus is now. “…We know that
when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as
He is.” (1st John 3:2). At that time the Christian
shall also be forever rid of the presence of sinful temptations in
his surroundings. In that eternal dwelling place of God’s people
no sin will be tolerated to enter. “But there shall by no
means enter it anything that defiles…” (Revelation 21:27).
step to happiness is to be saved and know it. In the next message
we will discuss how you can know you are saved.
Copyright © 2004
Thomas E Berry
Scripture quotations from NKJV unless otherwise noted
Copyright © 2008 Truth Helpers Inc.