Our Being Saved

Our Being Saved
Genesis 1:24-31; John 5:25-29; Ephesians 2:4-10
God saw all that He had made, and behold, it was very good. Genesis 1:31
Salvation is about so much more than my “personal relationship” with Christ and going to heaven when I die.
This more limited understanding of salvation may be traced back to the early church period; this is when the
Hebrew world view was largely forgotten under the influence of Greek thought.
1. Greek thought divided human beings into two parts: 1. The soul believed to be destined for eternity; 2. The
body which, along with the whole material world, was thought to be unworthy of salvation.
Then God said, let us make man in our own image…. Genesis 1:26
2. In Hebrew thought, the material world is good. Salvation includes redemption of God’s good creation; this
means both body and soul of human beings who are created in God’s image are part of the salvation plan.
Salvation is no escape to heaven from the world’s evil. It’s a new heaven and earth and resurrection of our bodies!
Give me a place to stand and I will move the earth. ~ Archimedes [credited with principle of fulcrum and lever.]
For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God….
Ephesians 2:8
I. Saved through Faith: Biblical faith has two facets: 1. Faith rests on a firm, reliable base. 2. We become
reliable, standing on a firm foundation. To be saved by faith means we have that foundation on which to stand!
…I made known to you, brethren, the gospel…which also you received, in which you stand, by which you are
saved…. I Corinthians 15:1-2
In I Corinthians 15, Paul says that the heart of the Gospel is Jesus’ death and resurrection. It’s our foundation
from which to move our bit of the world. The Lord is risen! Christ is Victor! The resurrection is the first step in
God’s coming new creation, including our own resurrection! It’s the beginning of God’s answer to the Lord’s
Prayer: Thy kingdom come; Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
…all who are in the tombs will hear His voice, and will come forth; those who did good deeds to a resurrection
of life, those who commit evil deeds to a resurrection of judgment. John 5: 28-29
Heaven comes to earth as does hell! There is literally hell on earth and we dare not minimize evil’s presence in
the world and God’s judgment on evil! We are created in God’s image to reflect God’s goodness. But we commit
evil, diminish God’s image and deface our humanity. Over and over Scripture tells us judgment is based on
whether we do good or evil [Matthew 25:31-46; John 5:28-29; Romans 2:6-13; Revelation 20:11-15].
“Let the one who does wrong, still do wrong; and the one who is filthy, still be filthy…. Revelation 22:11
A look at hell on earth suggests a bit about hell in the afterlife. In the midst of the most terrible evil on earth we
find those still trying to do good! Pure evil is where all good is gone; this is really hell! We can think of hell as
where evil doers are allowed to go on doing evil with no good to restrain them! If God permits humans to go on
doing evil until God’s image is totally erased and every shred of humanity is lost, then that is what hell is like!
…we groan within ourselves, waiting eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our body. For in
hope we have been saved…. Romans 8:24
II. Saved in Hope: In Romans 8:18-25, we find a view of salvation that encompasses all God’s world. Hope for
all creation to be transformed and set free from evil and for hell on earth to be no more. It’s not a hope to flee
away to heaven but a hope for the coming of heaven to earth! We can keep on keeping on in hope!
…we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works…. Ephesians 2:10
III. Saved for Works of Love: We are God’s good creation! Rescued by Christ’s victory over evil’s power!
Knowing he is alive! Serving a good God! Standing on faith’s foundation! Keeping on in hope of God’s coming
kingdom! Steadfast in letting love’s light shine! Knowing with faith, hope and love, we make a difference!
…always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your toil is not in vain…. I Corinthians 15:58