Day 25: Are You Saved?

Selective obedience is disobedience.

The next part of changing your life for God is salvation: If you are not saved and have no intention of doing those things that God's word reveals are necessary for salvation, then you are just wasting your time. As you approach this critical juncture of changing your life for God, you must have an absolute determination to meet every one of God's stipulations in His plan of salvation. Your feelings, inclinations, preferences, upbringing and ancestry have nothing to do with God's plan of salvation. Miss this point, and we might find ourselves missing heaven. For the next three weeks we will look at the things that save us as plainly stated in God's word. Omit any one of the elements and you endanger your soul. Are you saved? Are you sure?

I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life.    I John 5:13,NIV

Day 27: The Blood of Christ

Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. Jesus

The next element of salvation is the sacrifice that was made by Jesus. God's word reveals that the wages of sin is death and that all have sinned. This puts us in a precarious position, does it not? But God, who so loved the world, gave His only son to take our place. That's what Jesus' sacrifice was all about: To pay the penalty for our sins. Our part, now, is to live for Him. Will you?

But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him. Romans 5:8-9, NIV

Day 29: The Gospel

I am not ashamed of the Gospel, for it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes. Paul the Apostle

There is an important transition that occurs in God's plan of salvation that is absolutely critical for everyone who wants to be saved, and so change their lives for God. That transition is our part. The first elements of salvation are most fortunate for us all, because they require nothing of us. These elements are the grace of God, the blood of Christ and the sanctifying work of the Holy Spirit. But, if all that was required were the saving works of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, then there would be no need for obedience and there would be no Hell, for everyone would be saved. But God's plan of salvation has always been designed for man to have a part - and the first part is this: We must hear the Gospel of Christ and obey it.

By this Gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain.

I Corinthians 15:2, NIV

Day 28: Sanctification by the Holy Spirit

Repent and be baptized, everyone of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. The Apostle Peter (as recorded in Acts 2:28)

One of the most important (and misunderstood) parts of our salvation is the Holy Spirit. Scripture tells us that when we become Christians we receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. Some reject this notion, confusing this gift with the miraculous gifts of the Spirit that appear to have been present only during the time of the first century church. Others reject it outright due to it's connection to baptism, since they have decided against the need of baptism regardless of numerous passages of Scripture that discuss that very need. But for those who can accept the word of God, salvation can be theirs - in part because of the vital role that the Holy Spirit plays in God's plan of salvation.

But we always ought to thank God for you, brothers loved by the Lord, because from the beginning God chose you to be saved by the sanctifying work of the Spirit and through belief in the truth. II Thessalonians 2:13, NIV 

Day 30: Belief and Faith

 It is by grace you have been saved, through faith - Paul the Apostle

The next step in salvation is the combination of faith and belief. The two words seem to be used interchangeably at times, and there can be no doubt that they are inextricably related. Still, if there is a subtle difference it might be that faith appears to be belief in action. James said that the demons believe, and they shudder. The reason is that it is too late for them - while they believe in Christ, they missed their chance to act and now they are lost. Faith will cause us to act for God while there is still time. These actions spurred by our faith are prompted by love - not by some twisted notion that we can somehow earn our salvation, for salvation cannot be earned. If we are to truly change our lives for Christ, it will have to be prompted by our belief and faith.

Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. Mark 16:16, NIV