The Completion of Salvation

January 18, 2007

Our Lord Jesus came into this world, in the flesh like ours by the will of God. He made eternal atonement for the sins of every creature under heaven by his own blood of death of flesh. And until now, he is waiting for all brothers and sisters who believe in this gospel to work out their salvation with him.

Therefore, it is written, “For he says, ‘In the time of my favor I heard you, and in the day of salvation I helped you.” I tell you, now is the time of God’s favor, now is the day of salvation.” (2 Corinthians 6:2). Now is the time of God’s favor, and the day of salvation.

As it is written in the above, the meaning of favor differs from that of salvation. By the grace of God, redemption was all accomplished by our Lord Jesus alone without any others, but salvation is accomplished by him and by all brothers and sisters who believe in the gospel of grace. So, it is written, “…full of grace and truth,” and also, “Truth shall spring out of the earth, And righteousness shall look down from heaven.” (Psalms 85:11).

Therefore, redemption differs from salvation. Redemption means only the forgiveness of sins. It is written, “In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace.” (Ephesians 1:7). And also, “in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.” (Colossians 1:14). Redemption, the forgiveness of sins, was all accomplished by Christ Jesus alone, but salvation, the gift of God, is accomplished by him and by all who believe in it.

So we see that redemption is related only to the death of Jesus, and salvation is related to our death with Jesus through the substance of faith. If anyone says he is saved only through redemption, the forgiveness of sins, it is as if he thinks the cancellation of ten thousand talents of debt is all.

By a parable the Lord spoke about those who are jubilant and boastful thinking the forgiveness of sins is all, “But when that servant went out, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred denarii. He grabbed him and began to choke him. ‘Pay back what you owe me!’ he demanded. His fellow servant fell to his knees and begged him, ‘Be patient with me, and I will pay you back.’ But he refused. Instead, he went off and had the man thrown into prison until he could pay the debt. When the other servants saw what had happened, they were greatly distressed and went and told their master everything that had happened. “Then the master called the servant in. ‘You wicked servant,’ he said, ‘I canceled all that debt of yours because you begged me to. Shouldn’t you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?’ In anger his master turned him over to the jailers to be tortured, until he should pay back all he owed.” (Matthew 18:28-34).

The core phrase is “Shouldn’t you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?” This is the will of God that we become one with Christ and work out our salvation. Those who don’t know this truth are autumn trees without fruit, and make the other servants greatly distressed.

The Lord made atonement for the sin of the world by his own blood according to the will of God so that all who believe in it could bear the least fruit of a hundred denarii and inherit the kingdom of God with Christ Jesus who beared very great fruit. This is the love of God.

Therefore, the Bible says, “I, John, both your brother and companion in the tribulation and kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ…” (Revelation 1:9). And also, “Now if we are children, then we are heirs–heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.” (Romans 8:17). And also, “Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed–not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence–continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling.” (Philippians 2:12).

The Bible says about the atonement that Christ Jesus made all alone and the salvation that he is working out with all brothers and sisters who believe in it, “And I looked, and behold, a white horse. He who sat on it had a bow; and a crown was given to him, and he went out conquering and to conquer.” (Revelation 6:2).

As it is written, “he went out conquering and to conquer,” he already conquered the world making atonement by his blood of flesh, and now by the Spirit he comes again into us who believe, and through his love he will conquer the world with us and finish the work of love of God and cut it short. Amen. This is the will of God in Christ Jesus for us.

Therefore, the salvation was not finished in Jesus alone, but it will be finished in us, who have the forgiveness of sins and believe in it and accomplish the work of love with him. It is written, “Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.” (Matthew 6:12).

Only those who have a new commandment and obey it in his love for us can remain in the kingdom of the Son He loves. It is written, “We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love our brothers. Anyone who does not love remains in death.” (1 John 3:14).

Here is the completion of salvation, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.” (John 13:34). And also, “If you love me, you will obey what I command.” (John 14:15). And also, “Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me. He who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love him and show myself to him.” (John 14:21).

God is truly faithful: He makes us be companions of His Son, Jesus Christ, in such a great salvation. Therefore, his body, the church which shares in what is lacking in the afflictions of Christ, is the glorious church, the bride of the Lamb, which does not belong to the world and comes down out of heaven. Thank you, Lord.

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