ANSWERS TO LIFE’S QUESTIONS
A Bible correspondence course
Lesson #5 What Is Salvation?
Simply stated, "Salvation is God’s remedy for the consequences of man’s sin."
Lesson Two showed us the sinful condition of man, a condition that man can do nothing about, a condition which God cannot tolerate in His holy presence.
Lesson Three showed us the consequences of our lost condition. Unless something beyond our control takes place, we are bound for eternal punishment. The Lake of Fire and its torment awaits those who are lost.
In Lesson Four we learned about Jesus, the sinless Son of God who came to earth to provide a way to deal with the consequence of man’s sin. He provided Himself as the substitute for us.
Read I Peter 2:24: "Who his own self bare ________ sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being _________________ to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed." (I Peter 2:24)
By now, it should be clear why everyone needs to be saved, as Jesus said, "Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God." (John 3:3b)
Salvation is the spiritual transaction by which Jesus Christ accepts for Himself the punishment for our sin and offers to us
The word “offers” in this statement is very important.
The Bible tells us that Jesus died for the “sins of the whole world.” (I John 2:2) We might conclude, therefore, that because of what Jesus Christ did on the cross everyone in the world is saved.
But that is not the case.
Remember what we learned in Lesson One about our ability to choose?
That is a very important characteristic that we share with God.
God want’s us to love and serve Him, but He does not want us to do it just because we have to. He wants us to love Him willingly. He wants us to make that choice for ourselves.
Even though Jesus paid the price for everyone’s sin, God does not force anyone to be saved. He gives every person the opportunity to choose whether or not he or she will be saved.
So, even though we can do nothing to provide for our salvation—Jesus has done everything that is needed for that—we do not have salvation until we accept it.
Accepting God’s offer of salvation is as simple as accepting a gift from a friend. All we have to do is believe that Jesus is who He claimed to be(the Son of God) and accept what Jesus claimed to do on our behalf (pay the penalty for our sin).
Read John 3:36: "He that ______________________ on the Son [Jesus] hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the
Son shall not see life; but the _______________ of God abideth on him." (John 3:36)
Along with that belief should exist a desire to turn from your sin. This is a concept called, "repentance," and it is a vital part of our salvation. Jesus commented twice that "except ye repent, ye shall all like wise perish" (Luke 13:3,5).
After realizing that following our sinful desires takes us away from God, it only makes sense that when we turn TO God, we are naturally turning FROM our sin.
In addition, knowing how offensive our sin is to God, personal guilt and genuine sorrow for our sin against Him accompanies true repentance (See Psalm 51:1-3).
So, there is no mysterious ritual, no magic words, no ceremony. All you need to do is talk to God and tell Him what choice you want to make.
If you are thinking, "That seems too simple, too easy. There must be something else that I must do," you are not alone. Most of us have been taught, "There is no such thing as a free lunch."
Our natural tendency is to want to do something to feel that we deserve salvation; but the Bible makes it clear that we can do nothing to merit salvation.
"8For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.” (Ephesians 2:8-9)
"Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us" (Titus 3:5a)
When we speak of salvation being free, it is free for us; but Jesus Christ paid an enormous price so that it can be free for us.
Have you accepted God’s offer of salvation? If not, will you do so right now?
Recognize your condition as a sinner before God, turn from your sin and turn to God; then, you are ready for an eternity with God and ready to live for Him as described in Lesson Six.
So, what happens when you receive God’s salvation?
If you have been troubled by the guilt of your sin and the fear of its consequences, you may, upon accepting Jesus Christ as your Savior, feel a tremendous sense of relief.
On the other hand, upon believing in Christ, you may feel nothing at all. You may even wonder if God has forgiven you and accepted you as one of His children. That is not uncommon.
Regardless of how you feel after accepting God’s offer of salvation, you must realize that your salvation is not based upon how you feel. Your salvation is based upon the truth of God’s word.
When God says He will save you when you put your trust in Jesus Christ, you can be sure that He will do precisely that, regardless of how you feel.
The fact is, several important things take place the moment you put our faith in Jesus Christ.
First of all, God forgives your sins and you are at peace with God.
Read Romans 5:1: "Therefore being justified by faith, we have _______________ with God through our Lord Jesus Christ."
Because of salvation you stand before God in the cloak of the righteousness of Jesus Christ. When God looks at you, He no longer sees your sinfulness but He sees Jesus’ righteousness.
"Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe..." (Romans 3:22)
Second, at the very moment you are saved you change masters. Whereas Satan was your master, upon turning from your sin and turning to Christ in faith, God becomes your master. You become one of His children.
At that same moment something else also happened.
Read II Corinthians 5:17: "Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a ________ ___________________________: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new."
At the moment of salvation you are spiritually raised from the dead become spiritually alive.
"For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive." (I Corinthians 15:22)
That is said another way in Ephesians 2:1 "And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins." Quickened is another way to say “made alive.”
Although other things happen when you accept God’s salvation, one of the most important is that God, the Holy Spirit, moves into your life. Your body becomes the temple of the Holy Spirit.
"19What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? 20For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s" (I Corinthians 6:19-20).
There is much to learn about the Holy Spirit; but, in general, He helps us to recognize sin so that we will avoid it. He also helps us to understand the Bible so that we can do what God wants us to do, and He gives us the power to do it. We will learn more about this in Lesson Six.
You may want to review this lesson before completing the QUIZ SECTION below.