Salvation 101

Salvation is a gift from God and is something we cannot accomplish on our own, regardless of the works we do in the flesh. Jesus came to Earth to save us because we cannot save ourselves from sin and its consequences. Jesus did not come to help people save themselves; He came to be their Savior from the power and penalty of sin. We should never let a morning go by where we have not thanked our Lord for his sacrifice on the cross, the blood He shed for us, and the agonizing death He endured for us.

Salvation is the assurance of God’s presence within us. While God was with Israel in both a cloud and pillar of fire, He was not indwelling in them, and thus, their hearts were prone to stray. Through the Holy Spirit, Christ is present today in the life of every believer—the consummate definition of Immanuel (“God is with us”). Within every believer lies the power to have dominion over sin.

Salvation is a single-path plan (Matthew 7:13-14). The gate that leads to eternal life (John 10:7-9) is called “narrow”. This does not mean it is difficult to become a Christian, but that there is only one road that leads to eternal life with God (John 14:6), and only a few decide to take it. A 2015 Pew Research poll indicated that only 31% of the world’s population identify as Christians—and there is likely to be many in that 31% who are “lip service only” Christians.

Having knowledge of Jesus does not equate to salvation. Throughout Scripture, Jesus makes it clear that there is no middle ground: you either accept Him or you don’t. We cannot think our way to heaven, nor can we reason out a 51% belief in Him and see this as obtaining salvation. Our Lord asks for a total commitment to Him, forsaking all other gods and idols.

Salvation requires repentance of sins. We must be willing to turn from our worldly ways and allow Him the throne of our heart, not just lip service. We must turn to Him in complete surrender, exemplifying a life anew as a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17).

Salvation does not require any special skill or wisdom—it just requires a heart ready to accept on faith that Jesus Christ is the Living Son of God (Romans 10:13).

If you have never accepted Jesus as your Savior, I urge you to do so today. None of us are promised a tomorrow. This is the biggest decision any of us will ever make—a decision on where we will spend eternity. Jesus reminds us all that there will come a time when God will pull His invitation from you and offer it to others—and you will no longer be invited to the banquet (Luke 14:15).

Don't close Him out of your life.