God knew that man would sin and would need to be reconciled to Him. At the heart of God’s plan to reconcile sinful man to Himself is a Mediator, Jesus Christ (1 Timothy 2:5-6).
What is salvation?
Salvation is defined as “deliverance from the power and effects of sin” All have sinned (Romans 3:23), but we cannot save ourselves, because only a sinless person can save a sinful person. The Bible tells us that Jesus Christ died for sinners (1Timothy 1:15; Romans 5:6-8).
Provisions of Salvation
Certain provisions were necessary for salvation to be available to humanity: the death, burial, resurrection (1 Corinthians 15:3-4), ascension (Mark 16:19), and exaltation of Jesus Christ (Acts 2:33, 5:31; 1 Peter 3:22; Hebrews 1:3).
Process of Salvation – God’s Side
Through the divine side of salvation, God sovereignty acts to secure salvation for sinners through: Election – God chose, by grace, salvation in Christ for those whom He knew would accept Him (Ephesians 1:4-5). Regeneration – God makes us alive through Christ, enabling us to be born again, to experience a new birth (John 3:3). Without a new birth, we are “dead in trespasses and sins” (Ephesians 2:1). Justification – When God justifies us. He declares us “guiltless” before Him and places all of the righteousness of Christ to our credit. Justification represents both God’s forgiveness of our sins and the righteousness He has accounted to us (Romans 3:28; 5:1). Adoption – Adoption means, “the placing of a son.” God gives us the full rights of inheritance in His family as though we had been born into it (Galatians 4:4-5). Because we are God’s children, we can call him Abba or Daddy (Romans 8:15). As God’s children, we can be confident that he understands us, takes care of us, and will bless us. Sanctification – When we become Christians, God sanctifies us; or sets us apart permanently for Himself (1Corinthians 6:11). Through sanctification, we become more and more like Jesus Christ through the work of the Holy Spirit.
Process of Salvation- Man’s Side
Just as there is a divine side of salvation, there is a human side that shows itself through “free will”: Belief means acknowledging Jesus Christ not only in our heads, but also in our hearts (John 3:18, 36). Repentance is a sincere and thorough change of mind and heart away from sin (2 Peter 3:9). We must not only turn from our sins, but we must also turn to God (Acts 3:19, 26:18; 1 Thessalonians 1:19). Faith can be defined as “confiding trust.” It involves our intellect, emotions, and will (Mark 4:16-17; Romans 10:9, 17; Ephesians 2:8-9)
Product of Salvation
God created us and Christ purchased us so that we might know Him, walk with Him, and glorify Him (Ephesians 1:11-12). He also wants us to bear much fruit as we invest our lives in service to Him. We bear fruit by winning others to Christ, by helping them grow spiritually (Romans 1:13), by sharing our blessings with others (Philippians 4:17), by giving praise and thanks to God (Hebrews 13:15), and by living a changed life through our conduct and character (Galatians 5:22).