What is Salvational?

Discussion in 'General Discussions' started by Joshuastone7, Apr 19, 2018.

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    Joshuastone7

    Joshuastone7 Administrator Staff Member

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    So, I've been considering this subject these last few days, and thought I would gain your opinion on the matter. Please and thank you...

    What is salvational?

    The first thought that comes to mind for me is Jesus's response to the rich man.

    Mth 19:16 "Now look! someone came up to him and said: “Teacher, what good must I do to gain everlasting life?”

    Mth 19:17-19 "If, though, you want to enter into life, observe the commandments continually.” He said to him: “Which ones?” Jesus said: “You must not murder, you must not commit adultery, you must not steal, you must not bear false witness, honor your father and your mother, and you must love your neighbor as yourself.”

    Mth 17:21 "If you want to be perfect, go sell your belongings and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come be my follower.”

    So this gentlemen asked our Lord directly what he needed to survive. Perhaps to try and prove his righteousness by his response, in saying that he has kept all the commandments. Or even to test Jesus by asking in the first place, but our Lords answer seems to have found a weakness in this man, by this mans persistence. Had he left the subject alone, would this man have been found wanting in his possessions? Does our Lords explanation show that more is needed then faith?

    Perhaps that's the question, that age old difference between faith and works, culminating 500 years ago in the Reformation. Justification by faith alone was the argument, and whether faith alone is our salvation, or works proving our faith justifies us for eternal life.

    Justification by faith:

    Rom 1:16-17 "For I am not ashamed of the good news; it is, in fact, God’s power for salvation to everyone having faith, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. For in it God’s righteousness is being revealed by faith and for faith, just as it is written: “But the righteous one will live by reason of faith.”

    Faith without works is dead:

    Jms 2:14 "Of what benefit is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but he does not have works? That faith cannot save him, can it?"

    It seems pretty clear to me, that faith alone is not the only deciding factor. I went from a Witness who believed only those in the Watchtower had salvation, to anyone who believes in our Lord surviving, to finding myself equalizing somewhere back in the middle, after all of these years.

    Our Lords words to those that have faith, but lacked works:

    Mth 7:21-23 "Not everyone saying to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter into the Kingdom of the heavens, but only the one doing the will of my Father who is in the heavens will. Many will say to me in that day: ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and expel demons in your name, and perform many powerful works in your name?’ And then I will declare to them: ‘I never knew you! Get away from me, you workers of lawlessness!’

    Yet it is our faith separate from our works that saves us by the free gift:

    Eph 2:8 "By this undeserved kindness you have been saved through faith, and this is not of your own doing; rather, it is God’s gift."

    Our Lord made it very clear that faith alone cannot be relied on to determine salvation. Even Paul said in Rom 3 that men were leaning on Gods forgiveness in his time to justify their sins, believing they could do as they wished, for the grace of God would forgive them, yet Paul clearly pointed out they were quite mistaken.

    It would appear that the decision of who will survive, and who will be cast out, comes down to judgement. It could be down to even a single decision by an individual. It could come down to our personal level of understanding in what is required, or even our lack of understanding.

    I think about the flood and how many people might have been married, a family, and just living normal lives. They didn't survive because they made a simple choice to live their lives rather then heed Noah's words. While they may have believed there was a God, they chose to guide their own steps, either by lack of knowledge, or by choice, the two would seem to be the synonyms. So the deciding factor must be that Noah came to them, told them, but their heart conditions showed their willingness to allow Jehovah to direct their steps or to direct their own. This to me seems more a narrow path...

    Mth 7:13-14 "Go in through the narrow gate, because broad is the gate and spacious is the road leading off into destruction, and many are going in through it; whereas narrow is the gate and cramped the road leading off into life, and few are finding it."

    Our Lord told us the path is narrow, and that seems contradictory to the understanding that all that is needed is faith. There are 2.2 billion Christians on earth, does that sound like a few finding a narrow path?

    This takes me back to the right to rule question that builds the theme of the entire Bible. If Adam and Eve had allowed God to direct their steps, we wouldn't be in this situation, and that same perspective applies even down to our day. It is the permeating theme throughout life in general. It seems likely we will be judged on this factor, beyond all others. Will we allow God to direct our steps, or do we wish to guide our own.

    Our Lord isn't static in our every day workings, he is continually working in our lives.

    Luk 12:48 "But the one who did not understand and yet did things deserving of strokes will be beaten with few. Indeed, everyone to whom much was given, much will be demanded of him, and the one who was put in charge of much will have more than usual demanded of him."

    Some of us are given more "understanding" and therefore we are expected more of. If we with our more knowledge do the same things as those lacking knowledge, they survive, while we are cast out, for we are judged by our knowledge, while they are survived by their lack of knowledge.

    In the end I think about that judging process, and how former imperfect humans sit as judges. Who better then those who were previously forgiven, and who might error on the side of love?

    Mth 19:28 "Jesus said to them: “Truly I say to you, in the re-creation, when the Son of man sits down on his glorious throne, you who have followed me will sit on 12 thrones, judging the 12 tribes of Israel."

    One thing I do know for sure is, that if someone like me can be forgiven, then anyone can be.

    AJ
     
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    Imabetterboy

    Imabetterboy Member

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    I'm not one to say once saved always saved, but I do believed that if someone, saved you from drowning, because you got too close to a raging river and fell in. You are saved!

    If you go and fall in again, than, there may not be someone there to pul you out again. So, I'm sure you'd be carful of what you did in the future.

    So once we have come into a father/son/daughter relationship with our Heavenly Father, we have a different perspective on life. We are saved from the evil world and now want to please our loving Father. We are all his siblings with different views and quirks, but we are united in our love of God and are moved to love one another just like any good decent family.

    That's it from me. We are saved up to a point, Why would anyone want to go back to breaking God's laws and principles?

    Brotherly love!
     

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