Wednesday, March 8

How does God save sinners?

A Christian blogger asked me for my explanation of some key Biblical doctrines and how they are inter-related. The following is my understanding:

Nearly All Christians agree on the following points:
1. God will save many but not all people that have and will live to eternal life.

2. God is sovereign and powerful enough to save 100% if he so desired.
3. Faith in the atonement of Jesus Christ is the method for saving sinners.

One view of how man comes to faith in Jesus Christ is that man, though a fallen sinner, has the ability to choose God with a will that is free. In this view Jesus Christ died a sacrificial death to make salvation a possibility for everyone but a certainty for no one. This view limits the power of the atonement since it would be possible that no one would be saved and Christ would have died in vain. This view ultimately depends on human decision. The circumstances of birth and length of life give advantages to some over others in this view.

The reformed view holds that man is spiritually dead due to the fall of Adam and has no ability to choose Jesus Christ in and of himself. In this view Jesus Christ died a sacrificial death to save many that God, through the Holy Spirit, regenerates and enables to freely come to faith in Christ. This view gives the atonement perfect power, but limits the scope to those that God predestines to graciously make alive from their spiritual death through rebirth. Those God saves will persevere through the power of God’s grace and will not be lost. This whole salvation process is through God’s grace from first to last, and does not depend on the effort of man or his decision. Unconditional election is by grace. The atonement is by grace and the preservation of the saints is by grace.

The following Photo Meditations give more explanation and supporting Bible verses: 3, 4, 5, 6, 9, 13, 14, 15, and 33.

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