Major Doctrines Which Define New Testament Salvation
This reference is also available in a printed version under the same
Several churches and individuals have used it to help teach the basic
fundamentals of salvation to new Christians. It covers alot of material
in a few pages with over 350 Bible references. It is available from
Morton Publications, 2101 Morton Road, Sutton, WV
26601 for $2.00 each
postage paid. For more information email the author, Timothy S.
The following is a
set of eight outlines intended to help a born again Christian better
understand his salvation. Many Christians neglect to study the
doctrines that define New Testament salvation and miss the rich
blessings that understanding them brings. Salvation has many different
aspects; no single term or principle can adequately define it. To show
believers the extent of what they have in Christ, the Holy Spirit put
no less than eight separate doctrines in the Bible to explain New
Testament salvation. Each one describes it from a slightly different
perspective. A good understanding of these doctrines is essential for a
Christian to become mature in the faith and truly appreciate what God
has done for him. Every Christian should be fully acquainted with the
sanctification, regeneration, etc.,
many have only a shallow knowledge of these doctrines if any knowledge
of them at all. However, if the believer will study the scriptures as
the Lord commands him to (2 Timothy 2:15), the Holy Spirit will reveal
these truths to him (John 14:26). He will then have a greater
confidence in the permanence of his salvation and also be better
equipped to serve his Savior.
primary reason God has given man the Bible was so he could learn
doctrine (2 Timothy 3:16). God
wants the sinner to learn that
without Christ he is lost and headed for Hell, and He wants the
Christian to learn what happened to him when he received Christ. Apart
from the scriptures no one could know either. In several places in the
Bible the Holy Spirit pleads with believers to not be ignorant of
doctrine (Romans 11:25; 1 Corinthians 12:1; etc.), and the doctrines
that are the most profitable for any believer to learn are these eight
on salvation. Once they are mastered, the saint will be better prepared
to understand some others that are more difficult.
The reader is to
study all the references given below in his Bible. He is NOT to use
these outlines by themselves as a substitute for this study. They are
intended only to aid him in finding out what the Bible says about the
subject of salvation. The Bible alone (KJV) should be the Christian's
final authority for this matter (and every other matter), so a believer
should never let any other reading material, Christian or otherwise,
stand between him and his personal study of it. Personal study is the
only way he can know for certain what the Bible says and determine if
any teaching or doctrine he may be confronted with is scriptural. Many
believers because of failure to do this are confused about many aspects
of Christianity and often fall away from the truth. Every Christian
should have the same attitude towards the Bible as the
after hearing the apostle Paul's words, "...searched
daily whether those things were so"
(Acts 17:11-12). Since the Holy
Spirit commended these people for checking the words of an apostle
against the Bible, how much more should believers today check everything
they read and hear
with the Scriptures also?
The reader will
find that the names of these eight doctrines are not terms Christians
generally use to describe salvation. They usually describe what God has
done for them by saying their sins have been
forgiven, remitted, or
pardoned. Though all three of
these words can be found in the Bible
in some form, they are not words the Holy Spirit places emphasis on.
The above words are not even mentioned in the books of John, Romans,
and Galatians (except "forgiven"
quoted in Romans 4:7), and
these are the books which tell us the most about salvation. Of course,
salvation includes forgiveness and remission of sins, but it goes much
beyond the meanings of these terms. It contains eternal
standing of righteousness, perfect holiness, a new birth, a new nature,
and a host of other virtues, all purchased by the death and shed blood
of the Lord Jesus Christ. All
who personally receive Christ are
freely given these blessings, and it is only fitting that each believer
have a good understanding of what they are.
believer, please understand that these doctrines speak of blessings and
virtues you possess NOW. They do not refer to something the Lord will
give you in the future, or to rewards you earn by obedience; they
became fully effective
in you the moment you received Jesus
Christ. It is your UNION with Christ that makes them your own. Dear
saint, please do not cheat yourself by neglecting these precious
doctrines. God has rich blessings for those who invest in the study of
them. The time it will take you to "search
the scriptures" and
learn them will be nothing compared to the rich dividends you will reap
for the rest of your life!
KNOW these doctrines. Meditate
on them until they become
familiar friends (1 Timothy 4:15); study
them so you can give a
good answer to a skeptic (1 Peter 3:15);
memorize them so you
can help others understand (Psalm 119:11); and rely on their
truths so you can have the
"...peace of God, which passeth all
4:7). Once you really grasp what
God has given you, and realize what all salvation contains, NO
will be able to talk you out of your security in Jesus Christ.
matter how many "good words
and fair speeches..." (Romans
16:18) someone may use to try
to convince you otherwise, you
will KNOW that you have
"...passed from death unto life" (John
5:24) and will dwell with your Savior for ETERNITY!
unto God for his unspeakable gift" (2
Corinthians 9:15) and let
all praise, honor, and glory go to God the Father, and His Son, the
Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!
to be given or imparted life.
Concerning the Christian it
refers to the life and nature he receives when he is born again and
made a new creature in the Lord Jesus Christ.
The word regeneration
is found only two
times in the Bible. First, in Matthew
19:28, where it speaks not of the new birth of the Christian but of the
restoration of the earth at the second coming of Christ. It is
mentioned the second time in Titus 3:5 where one finds the actual
renewing and rebirth of the believer mentioned.
A. The Need For Regeneration
1. Since the fall of
Adam in the garden of Eden (Genesis Ch. 2-3), every person (except
Jesus Christ) has been born
spiritually dead in trespasses
sins (Romans 5:12-14; 1 Corinthians 15:21-22; 2 Corinthians 5:14-15;
Ephesians 2:1-7). To correct this every individual must be born a second
time unto righteousness and life
2. Also, every
individual on earth has inherited the evil nature Adam acquired at the
fall. Therefore, each person needs another nature that is not evil, but
righteous and holy, before he can have proper fellowship with a
righteous God (Genesis 8:21; Jeremiah 13:23; 17:9; Matthew 13:38-42;
Luke 11:13; 16:23; John 3:36; Romans 6:23; Revelation 20:15).
3. This evil
nature, and the sins resulting from it, is totally contrary to God and
brings His wrath
on the individual (John 3:18, 36; Galatians
3:10; 4:8; Ephesians 2:12; 4:18; 1 Thessalonians 4:5; etc.). Those who
refuse God's gift of regeneration will permanently
wrath in the lake of fire (Revelation 20:15).
4. Jesus told
Nicodemus, a very moral man and a ruler of the Jews, "Ye
born again" (John 3:1-12).
B. The Method Of Regeneration
1. A person becomes
regenerated when he hears the gospel, repents, and by faith receives
Jesus Christ as his personal Savior (John 1:12-13; Titus 3:5; James
1:18; Peter 1:23).
is a literal birth
into God's family where the believer
actually becomes God's child (Romans 8:14-16; 1 John 3:1-2; 5:1; 1
3. When a person
receives Christ , his spirit, which was dead in Adam, is instantly reborn
by the Holy Spirit (John 3:6). After this, he is no longer in Adam but
"in Christ" (Romans 8:1-11).
4. This birth is
as real as a person's physical birth from his parents (John 3:5-6).
5. It enables the
believer to call upon God as his father, and upon the Lord Jesus Christ
as his elder brother (Romans 8:15-29; Galatians 4:6; Hebrews 2:10-13).
6. It also makes
the believer a "new creature."
This is because he has been
given another nature in addition to the evil one he was born with (2
Corinthians 5:17; Galatians 6:15).
7. This new
nature is Jesus Christ's very
own nature, thus it carries with
it all of His moral attributes (Romans 6:8, 8:9; 1 Corinthians 1:30;
Galatians 2:20; Ephesians 2:10, 4:24; Colossians 2:13; 2 Peter 1:4).
8. Since the new
nature is Christ's nature, it is in every way contrary to the
believer's fallen, Adamic nature which he still has (Romans Ch. 6-8;
Galatians 5:16-17; Colossians 3:9-10).
Christian is to grow and become mature in his new nature and make no
provision for the old (Romans 13:14; 2 Corinthians 5:15, 7:1; Galatians
5:16; 1 Peter 2:2; 2 Peter 3:18).
C. The Permanence Of Regeneration
1. Since the life a
Christian receives is Christ's own life, it is therefore eternal
life (John 3:15-16, 5:24,
6:40, 48, 10:28-30; Romans 6:22; 1 John
2:25, 5:11-13; etc.).
2. The father and
child relationship between God and the regenerated believer cannot
be broken. Regardless of what
may happen in a Christian's life, he
will always be God's child (John 10:28-30).
3. The believer
is born again by "incorruptible
seed" (the word of God), thus
he "liveth and abideth
forever" (1 Peter 1:23).
Adoption refers to
God placing a believer as an adult son (heir) into His family and
giving him access to all the privileges that go with it.
A. The Biblical Use Of The Word
1. There is some
confusion among Christians about this doctrine because of the modern
use of the word adoption.
The modern meaning, to take a child
born of one family and place him into another does not consider the
fact that a believer becomes a member of God's family by regeneration
A Christian is literally
God's family, not just placed into it still having only the nature of
2. In the
scriptures, adoption is not so much a word of relationship but of position.
It speaks not of how the believer became a member of the family but of
the fact he already
is a member because of regeneration. God has
placed him in the position of an adult son, and he has all the rights
and privileges that go with it (1 John 3:2).
B. How Adoption Became Available
1. God's justice
required Jesus Christ's death on the cross to deal with sin before He
could place any person in His family. His death and shed blood fully
redeemed the believing sinner and made regeneration and adoption
available (Romans 8:15-16; Galatians 4:4-6).
C. The Privileges Of Adoption
1. The believer has
a father that loves him (1 John 4), cares for him (1 Peter 5:7),
protects him (Romans 8:31), corrects him (Hebrews 12:5-11), and
promises to never leave him (Hebrews 13:5-6).
2. He is a
fellowcitizen with the "...Saints
and the household of God" (Ephesians
2:19). Also, he is an heir of God and joint-heir with Christ (Romans
3. He has within
him the "Spirit of adoption" (the
Holy Spirit, Romans 8:17)
who bears witness in his heart that he is God's son and leads him to
cry upon God as his father. The Spirit will also raise up the saint's
body at the second coming of Christ (Romans 8:11; 1 Corinthians
15:51-52; Galatians 4:4-6; Philippians 3:21; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18).
4. God has
predestinated the believer to be conformed into the image of Jesus
Christ and has promised to openly reveal him as His son (Romans 8:29;
D. The Final Adoption
1. Even though a
believer is now fully God's child (1 John 3:1-3), God has not yet fully
revealed him as such. However, the "firstfruits
of the Spirit"
is a guarantee that He will. This is the main emphasis of adoption, the
day when Christ returns and redeems the saint's body making it "...Like
unto his glorious body"
(Philippians 3:21). In that day, God will openly
show all creation those who are
His regenerated and adopted
children (Romans 8:23; 1 Corinthians 15:35, 51-53; 2 Corinthians 5:1-4).
to be pronounced righteous. It is the legal and judicial act where God
declares the believer righteous in Jesus Christ. It is not only the taking
away of the believer's guilt,
but also the imputation of
Christ's righteousness in its place. The believer is not righteous in
himself but only in Christ.
A. The Two Aspects Of Justification
There are two
distinct aspects of justification:
forgiveness, remission, and taking away of the believer's sins.
b. The imputation
of the righteousness of Jesus Christ.
1. As mentioned
before, man generally thinks of salvation in terms of forgiveness or
pardon. God, however, knew man needed much more than just his sins
forgiven. If salvation only meant forgiveness, the believer would still
be bound to his sin nature and unable to quit sinning. He would be
forgiven for his sins but still hold the position
of a sinner
in God's sight. God did not want such a weak and practically useless
salvation for believers. He devised one that not only takes the sins
away but also puts righteousness in their place—both imputed
and imparted righteousness. When
He looks on a believer, He does
not see someone who is still a sinner and only forgiven, or someone who
is just innocent of the guilt of sin. He sees that saint completely
justified with the righteousness of His son Jesus Christ
3:22-26, 10:3-4; 2 Corinthians 5:21; Colossians 1:22-23).
2. The term
justification in itself only speaks of God imputing righteousness to
the believer's account.
However, the Christian not only has
righteousness reckoned to him (see Imputation),
he also has it
IN him. It is one of the characteristics of the
"divine nature" he
received the moment he believed (2 Peter 1:4; see Regeneration).
This imparted righteousness can also be found under the doctrine, Sanctification.
B. The Method Of Justification
1. Justification is
apart from any work of the law (the
ten commandments, Sabbath
keeping, the sermon on the mount, the golden rule, etc.),
only obtained by faith in the finished work and shed blood of Jesus
Christ (Acts 13:38-39; Romans 1:16-17, 3:21-30, 4:5, 5:1-9, 10:4; 1
Corinthians 6:11; Galatians 2:16, 3:8, 22).
2. If one could
be justified by keeping the law or by good works, then Christ died for
nothing (Galatians 2:21, 3:24).
3. The reason God
gave man the law was to show him that he is a sinner and unable to live
up to God's righteous standard. Then, after the sinner realized this,
its purpose was to lead him to
Christ for salvation (Romans
3:20; Galatians 3:24).
C. The Extent Of Justification
1. Many believe that
salvation only puts the believer in the same condition Adam was before
the fall; that is, in an innocent state. Again, this is only
forgiveness. Innocence and forgiveness in themselves do not speak of righteousness
in any way. As Adam proved, it only takes one act of disobedience for a
person to lose his innocence. On the contrary, the justified believer gains
much more in Christ than he lost
in Adam (Romans 5:19-20).
2. As mentioned
before, justification includes forgiveness and the remission of sins
(Acts 10:43; Colossians 2:13), but it does not stop there; it brings
with it "the righteousness of
God". This the believer cannot
lose; it is a gift God has given with no conditions (Romans 5:17-21,
6:20-23; 1 Corinthians 1:30; 2 Corinthians 5:21).
3. When a sinner
receives Christ, he receives a
death he did not die, satisfying
the curse of the law against him (Galatians 3:13); and a life
he did not live, a holy and righteous life which only Christ could
supply. Thus, every Christian is a partaker
of Christ's death
and resurrection. His position before God is the same as his Savior's,
dead unto sin and alive unto righteousness (Romans Ch. 6; Galatians
4. Although the
believer is legally
dead to sin in God's sight, he is not yet
dead to it physically.
This leaves him still able to sin. This
ability to sin, however, does not affect the saint's standing or
position before the Lord. To God the old sinful nature is forever
dead, and a dead man cannot
sin! God wants every Christian
to reckon (account) himself that way so he won't sin (Romans 5:17-18,
6:11-14, 8:10; Galatians 2:19-20; Colossians 3:3; 1 Peter 2:24).
justification brings peace
with God. Since the law that cursed
the saint has been satisfied by Christ, there is no longer any enmity
between him and God. The believer can rest in the assurance that he
experience God's wrath, for God poured it all out on
Christ (Romans 5:1-10; Colossians 1:20; 1 Thessalonians 1:10, 5:9).
D. The Permanence Of Justification
1. The justification
that God gives the believer will extend throughout eternity. The reason
is the saint is in an eternal
Savior (Revelation 22:13), who
purchased with an eternal
redemption (Hebrews 9:12), an
eternal salvation (Hebrews 5:9),
that supplies him with eternal
life (John 10:28)! Furthermore, since the saint is sinless, more than
that righteousness in Jesus Christ, "Who
shall lay anything to the
charge of God's elect? It is God that justifieth.Who is he that
condemneth? It is Christ that died..." (Romans
8:33-34). If the
Holy, Righteous, Sinless, Perfect, and Eternal God of Heaven cannot
find anything wrong with the standing of the justified Christian,
Imputation means to
put something on a persons account or charge. To attribute or reckon
something to an individual. Philemon 18 states it as
"Put that on
and salvation there are three different imputations in the scriptures:
a. The imputation
of Adam's sin to all mankind.
b. The imputation
of the world's sins to Jesus Christ.
c. The imputation
of the righteousness of God to the believer.
A. Of Adam's Sin To All Mankind
1. When Adam
disobeyed God by eating from the tree of knowledge (Genesis 3:6), he
not only brought death upon himself, but he also brought it upon all of
his descendants. Adam, the first man, represents the whole human race.
2. Romans 5:12-21
plainly states that men die not because of their own sin, but because
of Adam's one sin
in Eden. Since Adam is the father of all
mankind (all except Jesus Christ), God attributes his sin to all his
offspring. This makes every person a sinner. God does this because all
humanity was in Adam when he sinned; so, in effect, when Adam sinned, WE
sinned (vs. 12). As further
proof, verses 12-14 indicate that all
the people who lived from Adam until Moses did not die because of their
own personal sins. They died because the sinned in their
father—Adam (see also Romans 4:15; 1 Corinthians 15:22).
3. God is showing
us in Romans 5 that all born of Adam are sinners and die, but also that
all born of Christ are righteous
and alive (vs. 17-19). He is
showing us how the head or representative of a family acts in behalf of
his offspring. Since all are condemned by the actions of one man, all
CAN BE saved by the actions of
another. All men are born of Adam,
and all men can be "born
again" into Christ.
B. Of The World's Sins to Jesus Christ
1. The primary
reason Jesus Christ came into the world was to die for its sins and
take them away (John 1:29; Galatians 1:4; 1 Timothy 1:15; Hebrews 1:3,
9:28, 10:12-14; 1 John 2:2; etc.). This was a voluntary act of love on
His part; He did not have to give His life and redeem man but could
have sent the whole world to Hell and been just in doing so (John 3:16,
10:18; Romans 5:8).
2. While Jesus
was suffering on the cross, God laid all the sins of the world, past,
present, and future on Him. His father treated Him as the lowest
sinner, as one who had committed the most wicked crimes, though
personally Christ was sinless and guilty of nothing (2 Corinthians
5:21). And since Adam was not his father, there was no inherited guilt
in Him to compel His death, but He
died anyway. Why? Because of
sin, IMPUTED SIN. Since God charged sin to Him, and "the
sin is death", He had to die to
pay for them (Romans 5:12, 6:23).
3. 2 Corinthians
5:19-21 leaves no doubt that God made Jesus to be sin in the world's
place. He placed His wrath not on the guilty, but on his guiltless Son.
The just suffered for the unjust so He could save all who would receive
Him. Those who refuse Him must suffer for their sins themselves (John
3:18, 36; 2 Thessalonians 1:5-9; etc.).
C. Of The "Righteousness Of God" To
1. This imputation
was covered under the previous outline titled, Justification,
where the believer is justified by the imputed righteousness of Jesus
2. Comparing this
imputation with the last one shows us how real a doctrine imputation
is. Since every true Christian believes that Jesus died for his sins
because God imputed them to Him, he should also believe that he has
been justified with Christ's imputed righteousness. If imputation is
real enough to cause a sinless man's death, the imputation
righteousness must be just as real
(2 Corinthians 5:19-21)! God
treated Christ as a sinner so He could treat the "sinner" as righteous
(1 Peter 2:24).
to be set apart unto God for God's use; to be set apart from sin unto
holiness. It is an act of God where He consecrates the believer unto
The topic of
sanctification (or holiness) is found over one
thousand times in
the scriptures. It is a doctrine the Holy Spirit wants believers to
There are three
distinct tenses of sanctification concerning New Testament salvation:
which refers to the initial act.
which refers to the believer's present life.
which refers to the completion of its work.
A. Positional Sanctification
1. This is the instantaneous
sanctification the believer receives the moment he trusts Christ. At
that time, Christ sets his soul apart from sin and imparts unto him His
own holiness and righteousness. God's law, a reflection of His nature,
demands that man be perfect and holy. This, however, is impossible for
the natural man because he is by nature sinful and unholy (Romans 8:8;
2. God's work of
sanctification supplies every moral virtue He requires man to have.
When a person receives Christ, he gets all of Christ's moral virtues
with Him—he meets all the law's requirements in Him (Romans
3. When God looks
at the position
of a Christian, He sees the separated,
sanctified, righteous, and perfect
life of His son Jesus Christ.
The saint need never fear of losing this standing before God because it
is his union with Christ that brought it about. This union can never be
broken (see Regeneration;
Justification; Romans 15:16; 1
Corinthians 1:2, 30, 6:11; Galatians 2:20; Ephesians 1:3-4; Hebrews
2:11, 10:10, 14, 13:12, 21; 1 Peter 1:2).
4. Also, the
instant one believes, his soul is cut loose from his flesh by a
spiritual circumcision performed by Christ (Colossians 2:10-15). As a
result, the believer is no longer a slave to his old, Adamic nature
(though he can still yield to it); he is set free to serve his new
righteous nature which is Christ's. The saint is now capable of living
a holy life that is pleasing to God (Romans 6:11-14; Colossians 3:1-4).
B. Progressive Sanctification
1. This tense speaks
of how the Christian's present life is to become holier and more Christ
like day by day. Since the believer's soul is sanctified in Christ, God
expects this holiness to affect his behavior and be manifested in his
daily walk. He wants him to follow his Savior and live a clean,
separated life (Romans 12:1-4; 2 Corinthians 7:1; Galatians 5:22-25; 1
Thessalonians 2:12, 4:1-4).
2. Before a
person is saved it is impossible for him to live a holy life. However,
after salvation he can; he has the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit
to assist him. The Spirit prompts him to live "...not
this world...", but after
Christ. "As ye have therefore
received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in him" (Colossians
2:6). See also: Romans 12:1-4, 16:19; 1 Corinthians 6:12-13, 6:19-20,
7:23; 2 Corinthians 6:14-17, 7:1; Philippians 2:15, 4:8; Colossians
3:5-15; 1 Thessalonians 5:5, 22-23; 2 Thessalonians 2:13; 1 Timothy
6:11-12; Hebrews 12:1-4; James 1:24-27, 4:4; 1 Peter 2:11-12, 24).
a. How To Resist Temptation And Live
1. Every Christian
knows what it means to be tempted. However, being tempted to sin is
not a sin in itself. The Lord
was tempted in all the areas we are,
yet He did not sin (Hebrews 2:17-18). God will allow His people to be
tempted for several reasons. Some of them are: to try their faith (1
Peter 1:7), to keep them humble and dependent on Him (1 Peter 5:6), to
cause them to know the victory that is in Christ (Hebrews 2:18), and to
enable them to win the crown of life (James 1:2-4, 12).
2. The Bible
gives the believer some guidelines to follow concerning temptation.
a. He is to watch
and pray that he enters not into
it (Matthew 26:41).
b. He is to stay
away from any thing or situation
that may lead him into it (Romans
16:19; 1 Thessalonians 5:22).
c. And he is to
from worldly thinking to godly thinking by the
renewing of his mind (Romans 12:1-4).
even after abiding in these guidelines, temptation may still come. The
Christian can defend himself against it by following three scriptural
principles. He should:
his Savior's example and resist the Devil by rebuking him with
scripture (Matthew 4:1-11; James 4:7).
himself to God and reckon himself dead to sin (Romans 6:2-11; Galatians
2:19; 1 Peter 2:24).
c. Earnestly watch
for the way of escape God has promised, taking it immediately once it
is discovered (1 Corinthians 10:13).
4. If the
believer will sincerely and prayerfully follow all three of these
principles when he is tempted, he will, by the power of God, overcome
the temptation. Furthermore, the experience he gains in dealing with it
will make him stronger and better able to serve the Lord. However, if a
believer gives in and does sin (and all Christians do at times), it is
because he neglected
one or more of the above means of defense.
5. When a
Christian sins he must remember that God
will by no means abandon
of forsake him. He is still his
Father no matter what happens! God
will instantly forgive any believer when he confesses his disobedience
as sin (1 John 1:8-10). He may have to pay in the flesh for the sin
(reap what he has sown), but he will not suffer eternal condemnation.
Though sin cannot break a saint's relationship with God, it can cause a
break in fellowship until he confesses it as sin and forsakes it.
concerning doubtful things (thoughts and actions the believer is not
certain about), the Holy Spirit has given some more principles to guide
a. Can the
believer do the action he is thinking about in the name of Jesus Christ
b. Can he give
thanks to God for it (Colossians 3:17)?
c. Can he do it
with the belief that it pleases God (Romans 14:23)?
d. Would he like
the Lord to find him doing it when He returns (1 Thessalonians 5:1-3)?
The safest and
surest way to deal with doubtful thoughts, actions, and circumstances
is, "when in doubt, don't."
b. The Means Of Progressive
1. The Lord Jesus
Christ prayed to His Father that all believers be sanctified by the
word of God (John 17:17). The scriptures can sanctify because they
reveal God's nature and show the saint where he needs correction and
instruction (2 Timothy 3:16-17). Before a believer can continue to live
a godly life he must read, study, and submit himself to the Bible. By
doing this the Holy Spirit will give him all he needs to live above
C. Final Sanctification
1. This tense refers
to a future event where God sanctifies the believer
completely—body, soul, and spirit (1 Thessalonians 5:23).
will occur when Christ comes back for His people at the rapture (1
Thessalonians 4:13-18). Now, the believer's body is not yet sanctified,
but in that glorious day it will be, making the him unable to sin! God
will separate his body from iniquity, as his spirit is now, and his old
nature will become literally dead to sin (Romans 6:7). This event is
also called "...the day of
redemption" (Ephesians 4:30;
see Adoption). When the Lord returns, all His saints will have a
glorified body like His, completely and totally
sin (1 Corinthians 15:35-38; Philippians 3:21; Colossians 3:4; 1 John
The Term "Salvation" Also Has Three
The believer has been saved
from the guilt and penalty
of sin (Luke 7:50; 2 Corinthians 5:18-21; 2 Corinthians 2:15; Ephesians
2:5-8; 2 Timothy 1:9; Tit. 3:5; Hebrews 5:9; etc.).
- He is being saved
from the power
of sin in his daily
life (Romans 6:14; Philippians 1:19, 2:12-13; 2 Thessalonians 2:13; 1
- He will be saved
from the presence
of sin at the
second coming (Romans 13:11; 1 Peter 1:5.
to be brought from enmity to friendship. To bring peace where there was
once hatred and strife. God is not reconciled to man, but man to God.
A. The Need For Reconciliation
1. When Adam
disobeyed God and ate of the forbidden tree in the garden he became
alienated from Him (Genesis 3:23-24). Before, when he was innocent, he
could have fellowship with God; but after he ate, a barrier of sin was
erected and this fellowship was broken. All of Adam's descendants are
also alienated from God because they sinned in him (see IMPUTATION).
2. God, because
of His love, desired that man be reconciled back to Him. Since man is
unable and unwilling to deal with sin and make matters right, God had
to initiate the reconciliation. He does this by redeeming the believer
from sin and bringing him up to His righteous standard by the
intermediary work of Christ.
B. How Reconciliation Was Obtained
1. Before man could
be reconciled to God there had to be a mediator to represent both
parties (Galatians 3:20). Job, who thought matters were not right
between himself and God, yearned for someone to mediate between them
(Job 9:32-33). The only person who can represent both God and man is
the "...man Christ Jesus." He
is fully God and fully man—"God
manifest in the flesh" (1
Timothy 2:5, 3:16).
2. It took the
obedient life, sacrificial death, shed blood, and bodily resurrection
of Christ to reconcile man back to God (Romans 5:10, 10:15; Colossians
1:20-22). He paid the sin debt man owed, tore down the wall of
partition (Ephesians 2:11-13), and made peace with God for all who will
receive Him (John 16:33; Acts 10:36; Romans 5:1, 10:15; Ephesians
3. While He was
on earth Christ suffered through life much as all other men do. He
learned what it was like to be tempted, slandered, ridiculed, hated,
poor, forsaken, condemned, and also to die. This fully
Him to represent man. On the other hand, He can represent God because
He is God—the second person of the Trinity (John 1:1-3; 1
5:7). Now, since He is in Heaven, He ever
lives to make
intercession for the believer against all the accusations of Satan
(Heb. 2:18, 4:15, Heb. 5:8, 7:25).
4. Jesus Christ
is the believer's advocate (Romans 8:33-34; 1 John 2:1). If anyone,
anywhere, throughout eternity, challenges the standing of any
Christian, Christ takes the position of a defense attorney to represent
him. He declares the saint regenerated,
redeemed, and reconciled to God.
He can say this because He paid
for the believer's sins Himself and is the source of every virtue he
has. "If God be for us, who
can be against us?" (Romans
see also, Justification;
Sanctification; and Redemption).
C. The Christian's Duty Concerning
1. The reconciled
believer has a duty
to go into the world and tell the lost that
they can be saved from sin and reconciled to God. Every Christian has
been given a ministry of reconciliation (2 Corinthians 5:18-21). He is
God's ambassador to the world and is to preach the gospel (1
Corinthians 15:1-4) to every creature (Mark 16:15), letting each know
that he does not have to die in his sins. The Christian who is obedient
in this greatly pleases the Lord.
to appease or satisfy someone; to make amends for a wrong that has been
committed. It speaks of how God is completely satisfied with Jesus
propitiation is found three times in the scriptures. Once in the book
of Romans (Rom. 3:25), and twice in 1 John (1 John 2:2, 4:10).
A. The Scope Of Propitiation
1. The basis on
which God saves the believer is the propitiatory sacrifice of Jesus
Christ. God, through Christ, appeased His own wrath against the sinner
by paying the penalty His justice demanded
Himself. As a result,
God can justify the believer without compromising His righteousness; He
can accept him into His family without accepting his sin!
2. The Old
Testament sacrifices were a shadow of Christ's coming atonement
(Hebrews ch. 10). To receive remission of sins then, a person had to
apply the blood
of bulls or goats on the mercy seat in the
tabernacle (or temple). The mercy seat, which was on the ark of the
covenant, was the place of atonement, the place where sins were
forgiven and God's wrath appeased (Leviticus ch. 1-16). These elaborate
sacrifices, however, could not
take away any sin; they could
only cover it (Hebrews ch. 9-10). They had to be offered continually
because there was no offering yet available which could take the sins
3. God had no
pleasure in the animal sacrifices. He established them to show man that
he is a sinner, that sin requires payment (death), and that the payment
could be paid by a substitute (Hebrews 10:5-8). These sacrifices
continued for hundreds of years, yet the thousands of animals offered
could not permanently satisfy God's wrath. They were to prepare mankind
for the one to come who could (Romans 3:20; Galatians 3:24).
4. When the
fullness of time had come, God sent to earth the only person in the
universe who could propitiate His wrath for eternity. It was His only
begotten son (John 1:18). He came to shed His sinless blood and die a
substitutionary death to take away the sins of the world (John 1:29).
Jesus took the place of the world (see IMPUTATION),
poured all the wrath He had towards the world out on Him. His one
sacrifice fully made amends for all its sins (Romans 3:25; Hebrews
9:12, 9:26, 10:12).
5. Though Jesus
died for the whole world, the whole world will
not be saved
(Matthew 7:13-14). Each individual must personally accept
Christ for His atonement to apply to him (John 1:12-13). Under the law
God showed mercy at the mercy seat. Now, Jesus Christ is the mercy
seat—the place of atonement. The only way a person can
atonement for his sins is to go to the mercy seat (Christ) and accept
His work in his behalf. The believer will never experience God's wrath;
the sacrifice of his indwelling
substitute (Christ) has
eternally satisfied the Lord and His law's curse against him (Galatians
Redemption means to
purchase or buy back something that originally belonged to the
purchaser. Concerning salvation, it refers to the death of Jesus Christ
where He buys back the sinner, His blood
being the payment.
Redemption is the
foundation of salvation; it is the basis of the seven previous
doctrines. Before God could provide eternal salvation to anyone, He had
to pay the ransom required to release the sinner from his sins. GOD
COULD NOT DECREE SALVATION UNTO MAN, HE HAD TO BUY IT!
A. Why Man Needs Redemption
1. Another result of
Adam eating from the tree of knowledge is that he, in effect, sold
himself to sin. He knew that his
disobedience would bring death (1
Timothy 2:14), but he decided that he would rather die with Eve than
live with God. As mentioned before, Adam's sin did not only affect him,
it also affected all of his descendants (see IMPUTATION).
sinful nature he got when he ate is passed on to all humanity.
Therefore, every person on earth is hopelessly bound to sin (as well as
to its father—Satan, John 8:44); and unless he is redeemed by
someone who is not bound
to it, he will die and spend eternity
in Hell paying for his sins
2. God saw man's
pitiful condition and according to His great love and grace devised a
redemption plan to buy him back from his iniquity (Titus 2:14). The
climax of this plan was the sending of His Son to earth to give His
life (blood) as the ransom (Matthew 20:28). This is the main reason "the
Word" became flesh (John
1:1-3). If Jesus came to earth but failed
to die a redemptive death, His whole ministry would have been in vain.
No matter what else He may have done (healings, miracles, etc.) man
would still be in his sins, under a curse, and bound for Hell
3. That God would
go to such great lengths to redeem His enemy (Romans 5:8-10) shows the
extent of the love and compassion He has for him. Christ
Giver and the Gift, the Offerer and the Offering, the Redeemer and the
Redemption. Only through Him
can a person be freed from his
bondage to sin and death, for He alone can provide redemption (Acts
B. The Actual Price Of Redemption
For something to be
redeemed a specific price has to be paid, and the price to redeem the
sinner is blood. According to Leviticus 17:11, "The
life of the
flesh is in the blood...it is the blood that maketh atonement for the
soul." So blood not only
represents life, it is actually physical
life itself. Before God would accept an animal sacrifice in the Old
Testament, a priest had to apply it's blood on an altar in behalf of
the offerer. The death of the sacrifice alone could not atone for the
offerer's sins. The priest must apply its blood to complete the
redemption. Again, the Old Testament sacrifices could not take away sin
The shedding and application of animal
blood which the Old Testament so vividly describes is only a picture of
Christ's blood which can take it away (Hebrews ch. 10).
2. The blood of
Christ can redeem sinners for at least three reasons:
a. It does not
have any taint of sin in it. The Lord did not inherit a sinful nature
from Adam as everyone else because a person's nature comes from his
father. Since God is Christ's father, He has His nature (Matthew 1:23;
Luke 1:35). Of course, Mary, His mother descended from Adam, but this
does not affect Christ in this respect.
b. Adam's sin
corrupted his blood and caused his death. The last Adam (Christ) knew
no sin; His blood is incorruptible (1 Peter 1:18-19).
c. The blood that
flowed through His veins was His Father's (Acts 20:28), and since He is
God manifest in the flesh, is could be no less (1 Timothy 3:16).
C. The Application Of The Blood
1. Since God is a
spiritual and eternal being, His blood has a spiritual and eternal
application to the believer. There is more to Christ's blood than the
physical components that were seen at the crucifixion, for it
exists and is available to all,
but it is only applied to those who
receive Him. You cannot get Christ's blood without getting Him, they
2. The moment a
person believes on Christ, Christ literally
washes him from his
sins with His blood (Revelation 1:5), cleansing his soul from all sin
(1 John 1:7), and supplying him with an eternal
(Romans 3:24; Hebrews 9:12). Furthermore, through Christ's redemption
the saint has been completely freed from the curse of the law
(Galatians 3:13), from all iniquity (Titus 2:14), and from his vain
life (1Peter 1:18).
3. In summary,
the precious blood of Christ did (and does) the following:
a. Purchased the
Church (Acts 20:28)
b. Brought justification (Romans 5:9)
c. Brought reconciliation (Colossians 1:20)
d. Brought propitiation (Romans 3:24)
e. Brought sanctification (Hebrews 13:12)
f. Brought redemption (Romans 3:24)
g. Washes the believer (Revelation 1:5)
h. Cleanses the believer (1 John 1:7)
i. Makes the believer nigh (Ephesians 2:13)
j. Gives the believer peace (Colossians 1:20)
4. The two
ordinances of the church also speak of Christ's redemptive work. The
shows His death to sin and the believer's
identification with Him. The broken bread of the second, the
supper, represents His tortured
body, and the fruit of the vine,
His shed blood (Matthew 26:26-30; Romans 6:3-8). God established these
ordinances so Christians would not forget the price paid to redeem
D. The Believer's Responsibility
1. The believer must
since Christ has bought him he is no longer his own. He is not to do
what he desires with his body but what his Owner desires. Every
Christian is the steward of his own body and God will judge him
according to the works he performs in it. It is God's will that he
glorify his redeemer with a holy and obedient life (1 Corinthians
Of The Eight Doctrines
1. Regeneration A changed
nature. The believer is no longer a child of wrath but is literally
born into God's family and given Christ's nature.
2. Adoption A changed
position. The believer is no longer a child of the world but is given
the position of an adult son in God's family.
Justification A changed
standing. The believer is no longer a sinner in God's sight because He
imputes to his account the righteousness of Jesus Christ.
4. Imputation God put the
sins of the world on the account of Jesus Christ, and He puts Christ's
righteousness on the account of the believing sinner.
5. Sanctification A changed
character. The believer is no longer defiled and unclean but is now
separated and holy unto God in Christ Jesus.
relationship. The believer is no longer God's enemy but now has peace
with Him and is His friend.
7. Propitiation All the
wrath of God that was once upon the believer has been appeased by the
substitutionary death of Christ.
8. Redemption The death and
shed blood of the Lord Jesus Christ has bought the believer back from
In conclusion, if
the reader only
learns one thing from the study of these doctrines it should be that
the born again Christian is eternally
secure in Jesus Christ.
Each doctrine individually proves eternal salvation and collectively
the proof is overwhelming. Everything God requires a person to be
(righteous, holy, sinless, perfect, etc.) He supplies in the Lord Jesus
Christ. It is the believer's union with Christ that makes these virtues
his own, so all
who are in Him are as secure in theirsalvation
as He is alive!