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Written by David Montgomery   


Of Salvation

Second Installment

In the first installment, I supplied a number of verses that mention salvation. If you looked closely at that list, you should have noticed that many of those verses seemed to contradict each other. Some said that God saves, some said that faith saves, some said that others can save others, some said baptism saves, one mentioned of a salvation in bearing children, one said the waters of the Great Flood saves. The Apostle Paul wrote in one verse that he was the worst of all sinners and then in another verse he wrote that he is going to save sinners. How can the worst sinner save sinners? Then, Paul says in another verse that folks can be saved by remembering his preaching. So the worst of all sinners is so good a preacher that his sermons can save people? If Paul is the worst of all sinners, it seems to me that others ought to be preaching to him so he can be saved. Am I making sense here? I can go all day like this. Are we having fun yet?

To solve the dilemma and still make sense, I can see only two conclusions:

1. The Scriptures are wrong.

2. There is more than one type of salvation.

I subscribe to point #2. There is more than one type of salvation.

Check out this illustration: How many types of apples are there? I can think of several: Gala, Fuji, Granny Smith, Red Delicious, Yellow Delicious, Pink Lady, Rome, etc. Lots and lots of apples, right? OK, so here’s the point: There are different TYPES of apples but they are all called “apples.” The same reasoning applies to salvation. Yes, it is salvation but what type of salvation? Remember the two questions I asked in the fist installment: What are we saved FROM? And what are we saved TO? You have to ask these questions when you read scriptures about salvation or you will get majorly confused and could end up believing a doctrine that aint in the Bible.

Let’s apply this line of reason to some verses in our list.

1. Matthew 1:21 “And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.”

Jesus is going save his people FROM what? The verse says He will save them from their sins.

Jesus is going save His people TO what? Well, we can imply that he will save them to a position where they cannot ever be tainted by sin, which is exactly what Jesus did (see the essays on Justification and Sanctification).


2. Matthew 8:25 “And his disciples came to him, and awoke him, saying, Lord, save us: we perish.”

Save them FROM what? From the storm, of course.

Save them TO what? To a place where there aint no storm.


3. 1Corinthians 15:2 “By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain.”

Now here is a verse that says we save ourselves. Well, apply the questions and see what you get.

Saved FROM what? If you read the context, it is a salvation from a vain, empty and hopeless mentality.

Saved TO what? To a knowledge which yields happiness and confidence.

It is always a good idea to check the context of any verse of Scripture before you make any assumption as to its teaching. This is especially true when a verse mentions salvation. I always ask myself, what salvation is this text teaching? Is it salvation from hell? Salvation from fear? Salvation from physical death? What? What? What? You see, that is the burning question: When a verse in the Bible mentions salvation; is the context always about saving sinners from sin, death and hell?? My answer is NO, and a thousand times, NO.

There is a salvation that only God can accomplish and that is to save no-good hell-deserving, lousy, filthy, stinking, bushwhacking sinners. The work of this salvation began in the process of Election and went through Predestination to the sacrifice of Jesus Christ when He paid our sin debt on the cross, and on to Regeneration where we are born again and our sins are washed away. I call this work of salvation, “eternal” salvation…but once we have this spiritual life within us, we *ought* to live as best as we can. We *ought* to obey His commandments and believe the gospel. When we do these good works, we experience a deliverance FROM fear, ignorance, bad philosophy and a deliverance TO hope, confidence and good judgment. I call this work of salvation, “time” salvation. Using expressions like this has greatly helped make sense of what was once a very complicated puzzle to me.

So, do y’all get my drift or are you “casting asparagus on my cooking?” (Chef Curly Q. Howard).

Thank you,

David Montgomery

Last Updated ( Friday, 03 April 2009 )
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