The Light of Christ Journey

Encouraging people on their journey with Christ

Paul’s idea of who can be saved differs significantly from the world’s. Most people think they must find favor with God by doing something. All religions, except Christianity, teach a way to earn salvation. They expect to be approved by God based on how they live, or because of what they do, on the assumption that the good things they do will outweigh the bad. The problem with this whole way of thinking is that it reflects a deficient view of human sinfulness and God’s holiness. 

Jews Followed the Law to be Approved by God

Paul, a Jew himself, understood that the Jews had high regard for the law. Romans 10:1 Dear brothers and sisters, the longing of my heart and my prayer to God is for the people of Israel to be saved. I know what enthusiasm they have for God, but it is misdirected zeal. For they don’t understand God’s way of making people right with himself. Refusing to accept God’s way, they cling to their own way of getting right with God by trying to keep the law. For Christ has already accomplished the purpose for which the law was given. As a result, all who believe in him are made right with God. [1]

Unfortunately, in their zeal for the law, the Jews had taken their focus off God and missed how Jesus was the Messiah. Paul tried to use what the Jews knew to show how God’s approval comes through our faith in Jesus. Then Paul concluded that if God’s approval is not dependent on following the law, it is for everyone, both Jews and Gentiles alike.

Too Simple to be True?

It didn’t matter if you were a Jew or a Gentile to Paul, as salvation depended on faith in Jesus. Romans 10: If you openly declare that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by openly declaring your faith that you are saved.[2]

To believe in our hearts and declare our faith involves a total commitment to God. We discover our sin as we believe in Jesus with all our hearts. This leads to repentance, and God promises to forgive as we confess and repent or turn from our sinful way. This leads to the restoration of our relationship with God. Our salvation is a gift that we can’t earn.

Anyone willing to commit to faith and follow Jesus can find salvation. It doesn’t depend on what we do. Jesus will save the worst sinner if they will turn and follow Him. Ephesians 2: God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it.[3]  Don’t refuse the gift.

To learn who can be saved, listen here:

[1-3] Tyndale House Publishers. (2015). Holy Bible: New Living Translation. Tyndale House Publishers.

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