Bartimaeus Alliance of the Blind, Inc.

Home Articles & Books Christian Bookshare Index


John F. Strombeck


Copyright 1940, by Strombeck Agency. Inc.

Reproduced here by the Bartimaeus Alliance of the Blind, Inc. under provisions of the Chafee Amendment, 1996.

                        SO GREAT SALVATION

                        by J. F. Strombeck

  Salvation from start to finish. Its meaning, its application and its
necessity. This is, in part, the scope of So Great Salvation. "The
purpose of this book," writes the author, "is to gather into a small
volume the salient truths concerning salvation and present them in
the language of the layman." He defines salvation as "a liberation
from sin and all its consequences, a preservation from destruction
and calamity."

  The solid strength of this volume is found in its comprehensive and
logical dependence upon the Bible. The sound scriptural base which
characterizes So Great Salvation reveals a thorough knowledge of
God's written revelation and exposes the reader to practically every
significant New Testament passage relating to the theme of

  So Great Salvation provides a tremendous wealth of knowledge
concerning "the greatest concept ever given, the greatest word ever
written." It is a rich, far-reaching study of the most basic concept
in the Christian life.

                        SO GREAT SALVATION

                        by J. F. STROMBECK



   1 The Importance of Salvation / 7
   2 So Great Salvation / 11
   3 So Great Compared with Creation / 19
   4 So Great in View of Sin / 26
   5 Delivered from the Power of Darkness / 33
   6 In Him We Have Redemption / 37
   7 God's Justice Satisfied / 46
   8 Clothed in the Righteousness of God / 50
   9 Brought into Harmony with God / 59
  10 A New Life with a New Nature / 65
  11 Saved by His Life / 73
  12 Objects of God's Unfailing Love / 78
  13 The Eternal State of the Saved / 82
  14 Salvation Is of God Through Jesus Christ / 85
  15 By Grace Through Faith, or How Is Man Saved / 92
  16 The Certainty of Salvation / 103
  17 Why Does God Save Man? / 108
  18 Salvation and Man's Conduct / 113
  19 What Does It Mean to be Lost? / 119
  20 How Shall We Escape, If We Neglect? / 124


                   1 The Importance of Salvation

  GOD is Eternal. In Him are eternal values, and apart from Him there
are no such values. All that is of man, all that he produces and
possesses, is temporal. Most human values are not only temporal, they
are ephemeral. Some last a few years and others even remain for
centuries for a future society to enjoy, but as for each individual
no temporal values follow him beyond the portals of the grave.

	As there are no eternal values apart from God, man can come into
possession of these values only as he becomes related to God. Through
sin, not primarily the sins of each individual, but the original sin
committed by Adam, the whole human race became separated from God.
Man cannot of himself through any reformation that he might bring
about or by any of his own good works return to God. There is but one
way for man to come to God and that is through Him who came down from
heaven and into the world as the Saviour of men. It is through the
salvation that God offers in Jesus Christ, and only so, that man may
become related to Him and thereby partake of His eternal values.
Jesus said, "I am come that they [who will hear Him] might have life,
and that they might have it more abundantly" (John 10:10). This life
that Jesus came to give to man is eternal and the abundance of it is
eternal in its values.

	There is an abundant life, widely advocated these days, but that is
restricted entirely to the material and temporal. A large part of the
professing Christian Church has, to


an amazing extent, become concerned about the abundance of the
material and temporal to the exclusion of the spiritual and eternal.
Moral reform, social uplift and economic problems have taken the
place of the proclamation of a salvation that God freely offers to a
sin-cursed human race that is traveling at a terrific speed toward an
everlasting separation from Him and all that flows from Him.

	Even where the need for salvation is seen and faithfully presented,
very often the temporal values derived therefrom, in the form of
reformed lives and remade homes, are the most loudly acclaimed, while
the spiritual and eternal values that come to the individual are in
many, yes, very many, instances seldom mentioned and much less given
their primary importance.

	The present-day emphasis upon lifting the human race out of its low
state has largely become one of dealing with temporal values. God's
emphasis, on the other hand, as found in the Bible, is to deal with
the problem of human sin and all its consequences on the basis of
eternal values. This is through salvation.

	Social welfare work and all moral reform, however good for the
present, do not help men and women beyond the grave, and the grave is
not the end of man. He has an undying soul that goes on and on and on
into eternity. The salvation that God, and He alone, has accomplished
through Jesus Christ provides for that undying soul of man and brings
it into an unending infinitely glorious and blissful state.

	In all periods of human history has been found recognition that
there is an existence beyond the grave in which man either enjoys the
pleasure of a higher Being or suffers His wrath. Mythology is full of
this concept. The American Indians looked forward to their happy
hunting grounds. The Norsemen hoped to go to Valhalla. The


Chinese worship the spirits of their ancestors and Hindus believe in
transmigration of the soul, thinking that after death man's soul
still exists, but in the body of some animal until it is cleansed and
returns to God, the source of all things. Scarcely a man or woman now
living does not, deep down in the heart, at some time or other
contemplate a future existence.

	There is also agreement that the future eternal state is determined
for each individual while in the present life. When it comes to the
question as to what determines the future state of each individual
there is, however, the widest possible difference. On the one hand
all world religions, with no exception, offer man a state of eternal
bliss or relief from suffering, as a reward for something that he
does. Even much of that which is called Christianity is included in
this group. Directly opposed to this, God offers for the mere
acceptance thereof, a free, unearned salvation, irrespective of what
man's sins and failures might be. He who accepts this salvation is
assured eternal joy in an unbreakable union with God.

	To substitute temporal values for the eternal values of God's great
salvation is to miss the greatest thing that has ever been offered to
man. Because a large part of the professing Church leadership is
doing that very thing, those outside the Church, not to mention most
of those inside, never hear of the eternal things which God offers
freely to man, nor how these may be acquired.

	Men everywhere now realize as never before the instability of
temporal and material values, and long for something with stability
in which to trust. The only answer to this longing is found in
absolute spiritual values--in the eternal values of God.

	Because it is only through salvation that man can become related to
God and thereby partake of eternal values,


salvation must be the most important subject for man to consider.

	All that is known about salvation is learned directly or indirectly
from the Bible. There is no other source for this great theme. That
which the Bible teaches must, therefore, be accepted as revealing to
man the meaning of salvation and how it may be acquired. In this
matter man's opinions have no value. For that reason, all that is
here presented closely follows the Bible's teachings.

	The purpose of this book is to gather into a small volume the
salient truths concerning salvation and present them in the language
of the layman.


                   2 So Great Salvation

	IT is well at the very beginning to come to a clear understanding of
the term salvation as here used. Webster defines salvation as (1) the
"Act of saving or delivering; -- preservation from destruction or
calamity; (2) Theol. Liberation from the bondage and results of sin;
deliverance from sin and eternal death." Salvation, then, is a
liberation from sin and all its consequences. It is a preservation
from destruction or calamity. Because it is a. preservation,
salvation cannot be a mere temporary experience. It is something that

	But salvation may include more than liberation from the bondage and
results of sin and preservation from destruction. It also includes
that which God does to bring man into a perfect state, a state which
He has purposed for all who are saved from the consequences of sin.

	From a careful reading of the Bible it is evident that salvation
does not include the same things in every age. In all ages, salvation
from the consequences of sin and deliverance from everlasting death
are the same. In no age does God temporarily save man and allow him
to lapse back into his former lost condition. But it is in the matter
of God's objective with those who are saved that there is a vast
difference in salvation in the different ages.

	At a time still in the future, "all Israel shall be saved: as it is
written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn
away ungodliness from Jacob" (Rom. 11:26; see also Ezek. 11:19, 20
and 36:24-28). In that salvation every Israelite, the whole nation,
becomes saved and enters into an earthly kingdom over which the
Prince of Peace


shall rule. No heavenly position is in view in that salvation, for
Israel remains an earthly people.

	Another group shall be saved out of a seven year period following
the present age and preceding the establishment of the kingdom
mentioned above. At least half of this period shall be a time of
"great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world
to this time, no, nor ever shall be" (Matt. 24:21). During that
period "a great multitude ... of all nations, and kindreds, and
people, and tongues," shall be saved. Their destiny is to be "before
the throne of God, and [they shall serve him day and night in his
temple" (Rev. 7:9-17). In God's purpose the saved of that time shall
be a heavenly people, but they shall be servants in His temple.

	John the Baptist spoke of himself as the friend of the Bridegroom
(John 3:29). Because he was the last of the Old Testament prophets,
this suggests that the position of the Old Testament saints, in their
relation to Christ, shall be as the friend of the Bridegroom.

	Those who are saved out of the present age of grace (which began
after the death, resurrection and ascension of Jesus Christ and will
close just before the tribulation period begins) are said to be
predestinated to be conformed to the image of the Son of God (Rom.
8:29). They are called the Body of Christ (Col. 1:24), with God the
Father, even as He and the Son are one (John 17:21). This is the most
exalted position to which any of God's creatures shall ever be

	The term salvation, as applied to this age, includes then, all that
God does for man in delivering him from the consequences of sin,
conforming him to the image of His own Son and bringing him into a
perfect union with Himself and His Son. This salvation is the
greatest concept that has ever been given to man.It is the greatest


word that has ever been written or has ever passed human lips. No
wonder that the Bible calls it "so great salvation" (Heb. 2:3).

	It is this salvation in its greatest sense, as applying to the
present age, and offered to those who are now living, that is
considered in the following pages.

	So Great Because of What It Includes

	In order to place the one that He saves in this highly exalted
position, God does many things for and with him. Some of these are
here enumerated. They are explained in later chapters. There is
deliverance from the reign of Satan, called the power of darkness,
and redemption from the curse or penalty of God's holy law. All
trespasses are forgiven. He who is saved becomes reconciled to God
and is brought into a state of peace with Him. He is born again of
God with an eternal life. He is made part of a new creation in Christ
Jesus. The Holy Spirit is given to dwell within him forever, and he
is also sealed by the same Spirit. He is given a perfect standing
before God because of the merits of Jesus Christ, and is placed under
the keeping and providing care of God for all his spiritual needs.
Provision is made for deliverance from the power of sin in his
earthly life. He becomes the object of the intercession and advocacy
of the Son of God before His Father. He becomes subject to the
Father's chastening. For him there shall be deliverance of the body
from corruption and mortality. He shall be conformed to the image of
the Son of God and made one with God the Father and God the Son. He
shall be before God in love throughout all eternity. All of these
things belong to God's salvation which He has prepared for and freely
offers to man in this age. In these is a greatness that cannot be
fathomed by the human mind, but may be possessed by the mere
acceptance thereof.


	So Great Because Available to All Men

	While salvation is not the same for all ages, in some form or other
salvation has been accomplished for all mankind, and has been made
available to every member of the human race. The following passages
show that salvation is for all men.

	"Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world
[mankind]" (John 1:29).

	"For God so loved the world [all mankind], that he gave his only
begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but
have everlasting life" (John 3:16).

	"For the bread of God is he which coming down from heaven, and
giveth life unto the world (John 6:33).

	"And I [Jesus], if I be lifted up from the earth, [on the cross]
will draw all men unto me" (John 12:32).

	"By the righteousness of one [Jesus Christ] the free gift came upon
all men unto justification of life" (Rom. 5:18).

	"God was in Christ [on the cross], reconciling the world unto
himself, not imputing [counting] their trespasses unto them" (II Cor.

	"Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge
of the truth" (1 Tim. 2:4).

	"Who gave himself a ransom for all" (I Tim. 2:6).

	"We trust in the living God, who is the Saviour of all men,
specially of those that believe" (1 Tim. 4:10).

	"For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all
men" (Titus 2:11).

	"Jesus ... was made a little lower than the angels ... that he by
the grace of God should taste death for every man" (Heb. 2:9).

	"And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but
also for the sins of the whole world" (I John 2:2).

	"And we have seen and do testify that the Father sent


the Son to be the Saviour of the world" (I John 4:14).

	All these passages teach the availability of salvation to every
member of the human race. They do not, however, teach that all men
shall be saved. It is tragically possible to reject and even neglect
so great salvation and be lost forever. (See Chapter 20.)

	So Great Because of What Was Required to Accomplish It

	The greatness of salvation is also seen in comparing that which God
did in creating the universe with that which He had to do in saving
man. When God created the heaven and the earth He spake and they came
into existence. "By the word of the Lord were the heavens made; and
all the host of them by the breath of his mouth" (Ps. 33:6). "By the
word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of
the water and in the water" (II Peter 3:5). Seven times in the first
chapter of Genesis are found these words or their equivalent: "And
God said, Let there be," and in each case that which He commanded was
brought about.

	God not only created the heavens and the earth "by the "word of His
power"; He also upholds all things by that same power (Heb. 1:3). All
that man can see of the earth and all the life which is upon it, all
the forces of nature and all the stars of heaven, in their respective
courses, are upheld by the power of God's Word. All of this reflects
His omnipotence.

	But God could not--and this is said reverently--"by the word of His
power" alone bring about the salvation of man. It is true that man is
born again by incorruptible seed, by the Word of God (I Peter 1:23),
but that is


possible only because of the infinite sacrificial work of God which
was prompted by His love.

	Why this was necessary and the effect of this sacrificial work of
God will be considered in detail in Chapter 7. Here it is mentioned
to show that apart from it God could not even by His omnipotence save
man. Notice that in the following Scripture passages that which is
done is said to be conditioned upon the giving of the Son of God and
that the emphasis is upon His death.

	"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son,
that whosoever believeth on him should not perish, but have eternal
life" (John 3:16, R.V.). Apart from the giving of the "only begotten
Son" men would perish and could not receive eternal life.

	"Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he
also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he
might destroy him that had [past tense] the power of death, that is,
the devil; and deliver them who through fear of death were all their
lifetime subject to bondage" (Heb. 2:14, 15). It was through the
death of Jesus Christ that the works of the devil were destroyed and
man was delivered from the fear of death.

	"For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the
unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the
flesh, but quickened by the Spirit" (I Peter 3:18). If Christ had not
been put to death He could not have brought man to God.

	"Him who knew no sin he [God] made to be sin on our behalf; that we
might become the righteousness of God in him" (II Cor. 5:21, R.V.).
Only as man's sins have been charged to Christ and paid for by His
death can God reckon sinful man as righteous.

	"Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a
curse for us: ... that we might receive the


promise of the Spirit through faith" (Gal. 3:13, 14). Christ being
made a curse for man is the condition for receiving the Spirit
through faith.

	"Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity,
and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works"
(Titus 2:14). Apart from the death of Christ there can be none who do
good works as God sees them.

	"By the obedience of one [Jesus Christ] shall many be made
righteous" (Rom. 5:19). This obedience is expressed in the following:
"Who, existing in the form of God, counted not the being on an
equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, taking
the form of a servant, being made in the likeness of men; and being
found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, becoming obedient even
unto death, yea, the death of the cross" (Phil. 2:6-8, R.V.).

	The above passages declare in unmistakable terms that salvation
could not have been accomplished apart from the Son of God giving His
life in death.

	From His exalted position in glory the Son of God spake and the
heavens and the earth came into existence. When a rebellious and lost
human race was to be saved, He who had made the universe left His
position in glory. He took upon Himself the form of sinful man and
gave His life out in death upon Calvary's cross to deliver man from
the power of Satan and redeem him from the curse (penalty) of the
broken law that God might in grace save man unto Himself.

	Apart from the infinite love of God as expressed in the death of His
Son there can be no salvation.

	But salvation is not only by the love of God as expressed in the
gift of His Son, it is also by His power. Paul in writing to the
Christians in Ephesus said that God exercises


a power on behalf of all who believe. This power is the same as that
which He exercised in raising Christ from the dead, and in setting
Him on His Own right hand "far above all principality and power, and
might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this
world, but also in that which is to come" (Eph. 1:19-21). Nowhere is
found a better description of God's power than this.

	That which demanded the death of the Son of God and requires the
fullest exercise of God's infinite power for its accomplishment, can
be nothing less than "So Great Salvation."


                   3 So Great Compared with Creation

  THE greatness of salvation can never be fully understood by man
while in the present mortal body, but some of its greatness can be
seen by comparing or rather contrasting it with creation. Both
salvation and creation are God's work, and His exclusively.

	"In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth" (Gen. 1:1).
Thus God brought all matter and all energy into existence.

	The heavens are the work of His fingers, and the moon and the stars
were ordained by Him (Ps. 8:3). This includes not only that which man
can see with the naked eye, but all that lies beyond the range of the
strongest telescope. The vastness of it all is beyond the
comprehension of man.

	Consider next the earth with its rocks and minerals and its past
life as recorded in the fossils. There are the precious stones--the
diamond, the ruby, the sapphire and the emerald--each with its own
special beauty and appeal to man. Then there are the marbles,
granites, sandstones, limestones and slates used by man to build his
houses and places of worship, amusement and business. Out of the
earth man takes the ores and even the pure metals, as gold and copper
nuggets. By smelting and refining processes he produces metals which
form the backbone of vast industrial and construction projects. The
soil of the earth, when sown and acted upon by moisture and sunlight,
brings forth food for both man and beast.

	The fossils tell their silent though eloquent story of prehistoric
ages when great monsters roamed the primeval


forests. And some of the forests, even layer upon layer, remain with
their massive tree trunks preserved in stone almost as hard as the
diamond. The coal beds proclaim to man that ages ago there were
luxuriant tropical jungles upon this earth.

	All of these rocks and minerals have their own peculiar properties
and each one is always the same. They are all subject to fixed and
determinable laws of chemistry and physics, many of which have long
been known to man and others which are being constantly discovered.
It might be asked, parenthetically, how each of the metals and
minerals acquired its own individual characteristics? What gave to
each metal its coefficient of expansion, its specific gravity, its
fusion point, its conductivity of heat or electricity, its tensile
strength, its hardness or softness, its toughness or brittleness and
its stiffness or pliability? These are all fixed and determinable.

	The evolutionist tries to explain the characteristics and habits of
plant and animal life by claiming chance variations from one
generation to another through thousands upon thousands of
generations. The laws of physics and chemistry are as complex as
those of plant and animal life, and the characteristics of the
inorganic as fine as those of the organic. But there are no
generations to produce variations in the realm of the inorganic. The
gold and copper nuggets, the iron, lead, copper and silver ores, and
the marbles, granites, etc., are as old as the mountains themselves.
Where then did these fixed characteristics and laws come from? There
is but one answer: God in His creative work brought forth each
element with its fixed properties and made it subject to fixed
chemical and physical laws.

	Man can delve deep into the secrets of geology and discover much,
but the subject is so vast that there is much that is still to be


	In the same way consider plant life. How it shows forth God's
creative power! The great redwoods of the Pacific Coast have stood
there for centuries. The firs and pines of the north, the palms of
the south and all other trees serve man in their own way and are
always the same, for there is an unchangeable law of life within. So
also the grasses that produce grain, the plants whose roots sustain
life, the leaves which serve as food, were all given their properties
by the Creator. Still others bear flowers that enrich the life of
man, such as roses and lilies. Each plant has its own habitat; the
lichen on the solid rock, the Indian pipe in the rotted trunk of a
fallen pine, the mistletoe in the high branches of trees, the ground
hemlock in the densest shade, the sagebrush on the desert, the grains
in the rich soils and open sun, the lotus and the flags in the
shallow water, and the kelp on the ocean's bed.

	Yes, plant life is another great division of God's creation that man
can study and comprehend, but it, too, is so vast that even after
some six thousand years of human existence upon earth there is much
left for succeeding generations to learn.

	So also the animal world, from the smallest of the invertebrate
insects to the largest of the mammals, as the elephant and the whale,
might be considered. All were made by God, each according to its kind
(Gen. 1:21), whether it be the fowl of the air, the fish of the sea,
the beasts of the earth, or things that creep upon the earth. To
these also God gave life, but of a higher order than that given to
the plants. They can all move about, in the air, in the water, or
upon the face of the earth. Each one of the animals has its own
characteristics and fixed instincts and habits of life, and is
perfectly adjusted to its own environment. Men have written books on
zoology and filled libraries therewith, but there is more left to


and new discoveries are being made yearly. This, too, is but a part,
and a small one, of God's creation.

	Man is God's crowning work of creation. In His own image made He
him, and breathed the breath of life into him (Gen. 2:7). To man God
gave the power of reproduction and gave him the earth to subdue. He
also gave man dominion over the fish of the sea, the fowl of the air
and all things that move upon the earth (Gen. 1:26-30).

	To man was given intelligence and power of reason, so that he has
been able to search out many of the mysteries of creation and is
daily finding more. He has learned to take the coal from out of the
earth and kindle a fire under a boiler filled with water and thereby
haul his heavy trains. He pumps the crude oil out of the earth,
refines it and uses it to fly his planes in the air at a rate of a
mile in a few seconds. By use of a broadcasting instrument and
another receiving instrument man sends his voice out over the air so
that men in Washington, London, Paris and Berlin carry on a
conversation as though all were in one room.

	He uses X rays and examines the bones of his fellow man. He coats a
film, puts it into a camera and opens a shutter for 1/100,000 part of
a second and makes a complete record of all that is in front of the
lens. Man looks through a telescope at the stars and the moon. He
determines the speed at which light travels. He also determines the
speed at which the sun and the moon travel in their orbits. So also
he finds the motions of the earth, and from all this data he
predicts, years and even centuries in advance and that to a split
second, at what time there shall be an eclipse of the sun or moon,
whether it will be total or partial, and at what place on the earth
it will be visible. These serve as a few examples of what man can do.
The list might be multiplied indefinitely.


	Why can man do all this? Because God endowed him with intelligence,
and because of the fixed and unalterable laws of the universe which
speak of a creative intelligence and therefore of a God back of them.
He who created the heaven and the earth and fixed the laws for His
creation, also created man with intelligence to comprehend these laws
and ability to subdue the earth (Gen. 1:28).

	Space has permitted the mention of but a few of the wonders of
creation. The subject is beyond exhaustion, yet all this and all that
might be added cannot be compared in greatness with that of

	The fact that man has so subdued the creation and so marvelously
used it to his own good (and likewise to evil) is evidence that its
mysteries can be fathomed in a large measure by the intellect of man.
But man cannot by his own intellect fathom the mysteries of
salvation. They must be revealed to man by the Spirit of God. It is
written, "Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into
the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that
love Him. But God hath revealed them unto us [who are saved] by his
Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of
God" (I Cor. 2:9, 10).

	Great as it is, that which belongs to creation is finite. It can be
measured by the measures of man. Gold is bought by the pennyweight
and diamonds by the carat. Coal and steel are measured by the ton.
Farms are sold by the acre and city lots by the front foot. Timber is
valued by the thousand board feet of lumber that can be cut from it.
Milk is measured by the quart and gasoline by the gallon.
Transportation charges, whether by land, sea or air, are based on
miles travelled. There is a depth to the sea, a height to the
mountains and a breadth to the great plains. Rain falls by the inch,
and the temperature rises and falls


by degrees. The heat content of coal is according to British thermal
units. Electricity is bought by the kilowatt hours and gas by the
cubic foot. Speed is measured by feet or miles per second, minute or
hour. Light travels at the rate of 186,000 miles per second. The
distance to the stars is measured in light-years and some of them are
a thousand light-years away. The distance is something like this:
5,865,696,000,000,000 miles. Great as this distance is, and beyond
the grasp of the imagination of man, it is still within the limits of
the finite, for it can be measured by man.

	There is a span of life for all living things whether they be
plants, animals or mankind. It may not be more than a few fleeting
moments or it may be hours, days, weeks, months or years and even
thousands of years as in the case of the great Sequoias of the Sierra
Nevada Range. But for each there is a beginning and there is also a
certain end. Even the earth and heaven have a beginning. "In the
beginning God created the heaven and the earth." But salvation is
according to the eternal purpose of God (Eph. 3:11). It was promised
before the world began (Titus 1:2), and "was given us in Christ Jesus
before the world began" (II Tim. 1:9). So also salvation shall endure
after the present creation has passed away. "For the heavens shall
vanish away like smoke, and the earth shall wax old like a garment,
... but my salvation shall be forever" (Isa. 51:6).

	The creation is finite. It can be measured by instruments devised by
man and and it can be comprehended, though incompletely, by the
finite intellect of man. But upon that which pertains to salvation
man can lay no "yardstick." In speaking of salvation, God always uses
terms that clearly belong to the infinite. Salvation is said to be
eternal (Heb. 5:9); so also are redemption (Heb. 9:12),


the life that is given to those who are saved (John 3:16), and the
glory to come (I Peter 5:10). God's purpose in salvation is to
conform man to the very image of His own infinite Son (Rom. 8:29).
Forgiveness of sins is "according to the riches of His grace" (Eph.
1:7). Believers are called "to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord
Jesus Christ" (II Thess. 2:14), even the glory of Him by Whom the
universe was created (John 1:3 and Col. 1:16). Though here on earth
he who is saved dwells in a mortal body subject to corruption, he is
promised an incorruptible and immortal body (I Cor. 15:51-54) that
shall be fashioned like unto the glorious body of his Saviour (Phil.
3:21). Salvation cannot be described otherwise than by the use of
these infinite terms--terms that apply to God Himself. To man in his
original, sinless state God gave dominion over the earth and all that
is thereon. To those of fallen mankind who will receive it as a free
gift, God gives an infinite salvation and places them in a position
far above all else in the universe (Eph. 2:6, with 1:20-22). A
salvation that is so great challenges man's most thoughtful


                   4 So Great In View of Sin

  THE wonders of salvation and its greatness are best seen in view of
the awfulness of sin.

	Sin originated in heaven. Lucifer, the son of the morning, the
covering cherub, who was set upon the holy mountain of God, was
apparently one of the greatest of God's creatures and nearest to Him.
Though a creature of God he refused to be subject to Him. He rebelled
against God and said, "I will be like the most High" (Isa. 14:12-14
and Ezek. 28:14, 15).

	There is much to support the thought that as a result of Lucifer's
sin the earth, which was evidently his domain, was visited by a
cataclysm, and that therefore the so-called days of creation were
really days of restoration of the old earth. For a full discussion of
this interesting subject see Pember's "Earth's Earliest Ages,"
chapters II and III. On the sixth day (Gen. 1:26, 27) God created
man, an entirely new kind of being, that had not previously existed.
Male and female created He them and gave to them dominion over the
restored earth in place of Lucifer.

	Man created in the image of God (Gen. 1:26) was perfect, but
Lucifer, in the form of a serpent, came to God's new creature and
caused him also to sin.

	The Essential Nature of Sin

	To understand the awfulness of sin it is important to see what its
essential nature is--what it is that underlies all the outward
manifestations of sin.

	It has already been mentioned that God created man. To create means
to bring form out of nothing. While


God formed man of the dust of the ground (Gen. 2:7), all that is in
man that is more than a lump of earth was brought forth out of
nothing. Besides that, in the beginning God created the earth out of
nothing. Therefore, all that man is and has is of God. He is indebted
to God for all.

	He who could bring forth man out of nothing can also, if need be,
bring forth all that man needs out of nothing. God can therefore
provide all that man may need. By creating man God assumed the
responsibility for keeping him. By preparing a garden for him (Gen.
2:8) God showed His purpose to care for man's every need. It follows
then that the only rightful attitude for man, the creature, toward
God, his Creator, is one of complete dependence upon and submission
to Him. But the creature did not long maintain that attitude of
complete dependence upon God and therein is the beginning of the long
and terrible tale of man's sin.

	The story of man's first transgression, by which sin entered the
human race (Rom. 5:12), is told in the first seven verses of the
third chapter of Genesis. The serpent, i.e. Satan (Rev. 12:9 and
20:2), said to the woman: "Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of
every tree of the garden?" In this question is a veiled suggestion to
doubt God's goodness in His provision for man. God had commanded man
not to eat of the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil
(Gen. 2:17). Satan implied that in doing so God was withholding some
good thing from man.

	The purpose of the question was to break down man's perfect
confidence in and dependence upon his Creator. And that is just what
it did. Instead of trusting God, the woman began to reason about His
command. She added five words to it; "Neither shall ye touch it."
These added words made God's command seem unreasonable. She no


longer implicitly believed God's word. She was on the ground of
reason instead of faith. She looked to herself for guidance. That is
always so when man reasons about the validity of God's Word.

	Only one more prompting by the serpent was needed. He contradicted
God's statement that the day they ate of the fruit they should surely
die and then added that by eating they should become "as God, knowing
good and evil." The desire to be as God and not need to depend upon
Him could not be resisted. The woman took of the fruit and ate, and
gave to her husband and he ate. By that simple act the creature had
rebelled against God and had departed his state of dependence upon
Him. In that one act he had expressed a desire to maintain an
existence independent of his Creator. To feel that one can do without
God, or even the absence of a feeling of the need of God, and to live
without taking God into consideration, is sin. This holds true
whether the person be one of refinement and of the highest moral
standards, or one of a debased character. The good conduct of an
individual is not the determining factor. It is the attitude toward
God that counts. Sin, then, is essentially a setting aside of God by
His creatures and taking unto themselves His place.

	To depend upon self and to refuse to depend upon God alone is to
refuse to honor and glorify Him as God. As a result hereof, man has
gloried in himself and in his own works. This spirit of self-glory is
exemplified by Nebuchadnezzar. As he walked in his palace one day he
said, "Is not this great Babylon, that I have built for the house of
the kingdom by the might of my power, and for the honour of my
majesty?" (Dan. 4:30). It has been the spirit of man, ever since the
first sin was committed, to glory in his own achievements and to fail
to acknowledge


that all he is and has and is able to do is of God.

	To refuse to remain in full dependence upon God is also to reject
His will as governing in one's life, and to replace it with one's own
will. This is nothing else than to depend upon one's own wisdom
instead of the infinite wisdom of God.

	The very essence of sin, then, is independence of God and dependence
upon self. This manifests itself in failure to glorify God and in
glorification of self. Man lives according to his own will instead of
being guided by the will of God.

	The Outward Expression of Sin

	While the first sin was an act of disobedience and of theft, for man
took that which was not his, these were but the outward expressions
of the new attitude of independence of God. So also all acts which
are called sins are but the expression and evidence of an inward
nature that is independent of God.

	The apostle Paul makes it clear that all kinds of sins are due to a
failure on the part of man to maintain his rightful attitude toward
God. Against the sinful human race he makes the following charge:
"Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God,
neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and
their foolish heart was darkened. Professing themselves to be wise,
they became fools. And even as they did not like to retain God in
their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those
things which are not convenient [or fitting]; being filled with all
unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness,
maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity;
whisperers, backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters,
inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, without


understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection,
implacable, unmerciful: who knowing the judgment of God, that they
which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same,
but have pleasure in them that do them" (Rom. 1:21, 22, 28-32). This
is the awful category of sins that are but the outward manifestations
of man's failure to remain in his rightful attitude of complete
dependence upon God, to glorify his Creator as God, and to remain
subject to His will.

	There is a definition of sin which completely confirms the above
explanation of the nature of sin. It is, "Whatsoever is not of faith
is sin" (Rom. 14:23). Faith means dependence upon God. (See page
113). Therefore, all that is not in dependence upon God is sin.
According to this, even things that seem to be good may be sin. Many
think only of immoralities as sin. That is not true. The strongest
bulwark of sin is not the den of vice; it is the place of
self-righteousness. In the den of vice there may be a greater sense
of need of God and dependence upon Him. The self-righteous feel no
such need of God. They are sufficient in themselves; they depend upon
themselves and are therefore far away from God, though they may be
highly cultured, refined and moral.

	Jesus said to the chief priests and elders of the Jews: "The
publicans and the harlots go into the kingdom of God before you"
(Matt. 21:31).

	Man Is a Sinner By Nature

	There is another aspect of the sin question that is often not
clearly understood; that is, man is a sinner by nature. After Adam
had sinned he was not at all the same being that he was when created.
By sinning he became a sinner. Adam was the only man to become a
sinner by sinning; all others are born sinners. When Adam was a


and thirty years old he begat a son "in his own likeness" (Gen. 5:3).
As Adam was then a sinner this son who was begotten in Adam's
likeness was also a sinner. Everyone, except Jesus, that has since
been born has been born a sinner. King David wrote, "Behold, I was
shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me" (Ps. 51:5).
That is true of every member of the human race from Adam down to the
present day.

	Because of this sinful nature man cannot help sinning. That is why
"All have sinned, and come short of the glory of God" (Rom. 3:23).

	Sin Is Against God

	After the above discussion of sin it should not be necessary to call
attention to the fact that sin is primarily against God. King David,
after having grievously sinned against one of his subjects, confessed
his sin to God and said, "Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and
done this evil in thy sight" (Ps. 51:4). Today there is much emphasis
upon man's social relationships, and man's attitude toward God is
greatly neglected. It is therefore of great importance to remember
that sin, which in its essence is independence of God, is against
God. Let man first recognize this and return to the right attitude
toward God, and then his social relationships will become right, as
effect follows cause.

	The Marvels of Salvation

	When sin is seen to be rebellion of the creature against the
Creator, the desire to be independent of God and to become like God
Himself--independent of any other--to take to oneself glory that is
due God, and to disregard the will of God, then the awfulness of sin
becomes apparent. It is to this problem of sin that salvation


itself. "This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation,
that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners" (I Tim. 1:15).
Only the infinite love of God could conceive the thought of providing
salvation, and that at the cost of the life of His own Son, for such
a rebel creature as man.

	But the marvel of salvation becomes even greater, when it is
remembered that it provides a restoration of that which was lost
through sin. At least those saved during the present age, as has been
said, are to become conformed to the very image of the Son of God
(Rom. 8:29). They are to be holy and without blame before God (Eph.
1:4) throughout all eternity. They are to be one with God the Father
and God the Son, even as they are one (John 17:21). They shall then
be "like God." They shall become that which was offered to man by the
serpent, and which, in rebellion, man tried to accomplish by himself.
Their place before God shall be greater than that occupied by Lucifer
before sin entered into his heart, for they are of an infinitely
higher order than he was.

	Salvation that forgives man's rebellion and does for him that which
he tried to do for himself is well worthy of the name, "So Great


                   5 Delivered from the Power of Darkness

	WHEN Lucifer rebelled against God, and said that he would set
himself above the stars of God and be like the most High, he was, in
the wisdom of God (which is hard for man to understand), permitted to
set up a kingdom of his own, over which he became the supreme ruler.
It might well be called a government in opposition to that of God.

	In creating man, God added a new creature to His domain. Man was a
subject of God's government. To man God gave power to rule over the
restored earth and subdue it to himself. Man was subject to God
alone. The earth might well have been considered as a province of
God's greater domain, the universe.

	But only for a short time did man remain in that state of allegiance
to God. He, too, rebelled. As was seen, Satan caused man to disobey
God's command. By that one act, man declared his independence of God
and his dependence upon himself. It was a rebellion against the
government of God. By listening to Satan, man yielded himself to his
influence and came under his power and rule. He shifted his
allegiance from God to Satan. Man also thereby surrendered to Satan
the earth, over which he had dominion. From thenceforth, man has been
a part of the opposition government against God.

	Satan's rule over the kingdoms of this world cannot be questioned.
When Jesus was tempted in the wilderness, Satan offered Him all these
kingdoms and their glory if He would fall down and worship him (Matt.
4:8, 9). Jesus did not contradict the claim of Satan to the


kingdoms of this world. They became his when man yielded to him. That
is why John could write, "The whole world lieth in the evil one" (I
John 5:19, R.V.).

	Satan's realm is characterized first of all by falsehood. Of him
Jesus said, "He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in
the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie,
he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it" (John
8:44). It was by a lie that he won the allegiance of man.

	His realm is repeatedly referred to as darkness. (John 1:5; Acts
26:18; II Cor. 4:6; Eph. 6:12, and others.) The deeds of man, as a
subject of Satan's realm, are called the works of darkness (Eph.

	Men, because subjects of Satan's realm, are called children of
disobedience and children of wrath (Eph. 2:2, 3). They are this
because they are children of Adam who listened to Satan and disobeyed

	Contrary to popular conception, Satan is described as a very
beautiful and accomplished being. Of him it is written, "Thou sealest
up the sum, full of wisdom, and perfect in beauty. Thou hast been in
Eden the garden of God; every precious stone was thy covering ... the
workmanship of thy tabrets and of thy pipes was prepared in thee in
the day that thou wast created" (Ezek. 28:12, 13). Even in his fallen
condition he can transform himself into an angel of light (II Cor.
11:14). It is therefore not inconsistent with his being that his
subjects be accomplished and refined and appear perfect in the sight
of men.

	The condition of the human subjects of Satan's realm is variously
described. Of them it is said that "the god of this world hath
blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the
glorious gospel of Christ ... should shine unto them" (II Cor. 4:4).
They live "according to the prince of the power of the air [Satan],
the spirit that


now worketh in the children of disobedience" (Eph. 2:2). They are
called darkness (Eph. 5:8). These are not man's words. They are God's
description of mankind in the domain of Satan and under his power.

	From this it is clear that man's disobedience in the garden of Eden
was more than a turning away from God and a state of dependence upon
Him, it was a definite turning of man toward Satan and an acceptance
of his sovereignty for himself and his posterity. The whole human
race became involved and thereby all men became subjects of Satan's
realm of darkness.

	Because of this condition of man, it became necessary for God to
make a provision to save man from the dominion of Satan, that He
might save him unto Himself. That which took place when man sinned in
the Garden had to be reversed.

	It is significant that the first statement in the Bible that has
bearing on man's salvation is a promise of One to come who should
crush the power of Satan. This promise is found in the judgment which
God pronounced upon the serpent immediately after he had caused man
to sin. It is in these words: "And I will put enmity between thee and
the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy
head, and thou shalt bruise his heel" (Gen. 3:15). The head is the
seat of intelligence and authority, the power to dominate and rule.
When the head of Satan is bruised his power is broken and thereby
comes deliverance from the power of darkness. The seed of the woman
is the One born of a virgin. All others (who have been born) are of
the seed of the man. "Behold a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son,
and shall call his name Immanuel" (Isa. 7:14). When Jesus was born of
the virgin Mary, the promise of a deliverer from the power of Satan
was fulfilled. He came to "give light to them that sit in darkness
and in the shadow of death" (Luke 1:79). This


refers to none other than mankind in the darkness of the realm of

	As Jesus entered upon His public ministry, on a certain Sabbath day
He went into the synagogue. He was handed the book of Isaiah the
prophet from which He read: "The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,
because ... he has sent me ... to preach deliverance to the captives,
[of Satan] and recovering of sight to the blind [them that are in
darkness], to set at liberty them that are bruised" (Luke4:18).

	Jesus, the seed of the woman, did bruise the head of the serpent but
when He did so, as was also foretold, the serpent bruised His heel
(Gen. 3:15). This refers to the death of Jesus on the cross, for it
was through death that He brought "to nought him that had [past
tense] the power of death, that is, the devil" (Heb. 2:14, R.V.). In
His last public discourse before His death Jesus said: "Now is the
judgment of this world: now shall the prince of this world [Satan] be
cast out" (John 12:31). "The Son of God was manifested [as the seed
of the woman], that He might destroy the works of the devil" (I John

	When Saul [later called Paul] was stopped on the road to Damascus he
heard a voice which said, "I am Jesus ... I have appeared unto thee
... to make thee a minister and a witness ... to turn them [the
Gentiles] from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto
God" (Acts 26:15-18).

	In salvation, then, God delivers sinners from the power of darkness
and translates them into the kingdom of His own Son (Col. 1:13). All
who are saved thereby become "fellow citizens with the saints" (Eph.
2:19). Their "conversation [i.e. their citizenship] is in heaven"
(Phil. 3:20). They are no more of the present world system, or
cosmos, ruled over by Satan. They are no more in darkness, but are
the children of light (I Thess. 5:5).


                   6 In Him We Have Redemption

  WHEN man sinned in the Garden, he not only yielded himself unto
Satan and came under his dominion, but he also broke God's law as
expressed in the commandment not to eat of the fruit of the tree of
knowledge of good and evil. The penalty for breaking that law was
death. "In the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die"
(Gen. 2:17). That is always the penalty for breaking God's law. "The
soul that sinneth, it shall die" (Ezek. 18:20).

	The death that entered by Adam's sin has passed upon all men, so
that all men are under the penalty of the broken law (Rom. 5:12).
They are under the curse of the law (Gal. 3:10).

	While some reject the Bible teaching that all men are under the
curse because of Adam's sin, one need not go far to find proof
thereof. Every funeral is evidence of that fact. By sin Adam became
mortal (subject to physical death). When Adam begat a son "in his own
image" he was born a mortal. Mortal man cannot beget immortal
offspring. So all men are mortal and therefore under the curse,
because Adam sinned.

	But that is not all. When Adam sinned he died spiritually. His
spirit became separated from God. He lost spiritual contact with God.
He who is spiritually dead cannot beget children that are spiritually
alive. Therefore all who have descended from Adam are "dead in
trespasses and sins" (Eph. 2:1). That, too, is a part of the curse of
the law that has come upon man because Adam sinned. It is not true
that there is a "divine spark" in


every man. All, as quoted, are dead in trespasses and sins.

	Furthermore, because of their sinful nature inherited from Adam,
"all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God" (Rom. 3:23).
Because of this the whole human race is guilty before God and under
the condemnation of His broken law (Rom. 3:19).

	In salvation then, in addition to delivering sinners from the power
and dominion of Satan, God had to make a provision for setting man
free from death, that is, from the curse of the law. As death came by
sin, death being the penalty because of sin, it was also necessary
that man be liberated or set free from sin. Both the penalty and the
cause of it must be dealt with. This provision of God is called

	According to Webster, to redeem means "to ransom, liberate, or
rescue from captivity or bondage, or from any obligation or liability
to suffer or to be forfeited, by paying a price or a ransom." There
are two parts to redemption. First, to ransom or liberate from
captivity or bondage; and second, to ransom from liability to suffer
and to forfeit by the payment of a price. Both of these aspects of
redemption are found in God's work of salvation.

	Man is in bondage to sin and is under liability to suffer the death
penalty demanded by the broken law. He must forfeit his life to
satisfy the demands of justice. The only way to escape judgment is by

	As the penalty for the offense is death, it is impossible for man to
redeem himself. His own life is greater than anything that he might
offer as a redemption price. If the sentence had been an imprisonment
for a term of years it might have been set aside by the payment of a
given amount of good works or penance, but all the good works of a
life cannot be a redemption price, when the liability or obligation
calls for payment by death, or the surrender


of life itself. Surely, there is nothing in man whereby he can redeem
himself from under the curse of the law. Because all men are under
the same condemnation, no human help is available.

	What is more, it is impossible for God, the Judge, to exercise
leniency and set aside the judgment. He is infinite in all that He is
and does. His righteousness is therefore also infinite. He cannot
compromise in His judgments and in their execution. He cannot set
aside the penalty of His own holy law. It must be exacted.

	Because man has not that wherewith to redeem himself and because
God's infinite justice prevents the penalty from being set aside,
there must be found a redeemer, if man is to be saved. There must be
found one who is able to pay a price, or ransom, that is equal to the
penalty demanded by the law. Redemption, then, is a very vital part
of salvation. There can be no salvation apart from redemption.

	Necessarily, under these conditions, God alone can find a redeemer.
This He did in the person of His own infinite Son. For that purpose
He sent His only begotten Son into the world to become a man. "But
when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made
of a woman, made under the law, to redeem them that were under the
law" (Gal. 4:4, 5).

	By His coming into the world and dying "Christ hath redeemed us from
the curse of the law, being made a curse for us" (Gal. 3:13). Yes,
the infinite Son of God was appointed by God to become the Redeemer
of the world.

	The redemption price that He paid as a ransom for mankind had to be
greater, not than the life of one man, but greater than the lives of
all the members of the human race, for all were under the
condemnation of death. And so it was, for the ransom price that He
paid was His own


life. He said of Himself, "... the Son of man came ... to give his
life a ransom for many" (Matt. 20:28) He "gave himself a ransom for
all" (I Tim. 2:6).

	The sufficiency of this ransom price is due to three conditions. (1)
It was a human life. The broken law demanded that man should die.
That is why the Son of God had to take upon Himself humanity. (2) His
life was sinless. He could say to the Jews, "Which of you convinceth
me of sin?" (John 8:46). He did not have to die because of any sin He
had committed. He could therefore die for others. (3) Being the Son
of God He was infinite. His life was greater than the sum total of
all finite human lives. That is why His life could be a ransom for
all--all mankind. The ransom price was greater than the sum total of
all human sin.

	It is important to notice that Jesus said that He had come to give
His life as a ransom. He did not, as is so often claimed, die as a
martyr for a cause. He gave His life. He said, "I lay down my life,
that I might take it again. No man taketh it from me, but I lay it
down of myself" (John 10:17, 18). The death of Jesus was a voluntary
giving of His life as a ransom price, to redeem the human race from
under the death penalty of the law.

	In several Bible passages the blood of Christ is said to be the
redemption price. So in I Peter 1:18, 19, R.V., "ye were redeemed,
not with corruptible things, with silver or gold, from your vain
manner of life handed down from your fathers; but with precious
blood, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot, even the blood
of Christ." The fact that redemption is by the blood of Jesus Christ
is also taught in Ephesians 1:7, Colosians 1:14, 20 and Revelation

	There is no contradiction between the two statements that redemption
is by the blood of Jesus Christ and that


He gave His life as the ransom price. They mean the same thing,
because the life is in the blood (Lev. 17:11) and when the blood is
shed the life is given. That is why the emphasis must be placed upon
the shed blood as Jesus Himself did. When instituting the Lord's
Supper He took the cup of wine and said, "this is my blood ... which
is shed for many for the remission of sins" (Matt. 26:28). It is
therefore most definitely not by His life as He lived it that men are
redeemed from the curse of the law. It is by the giving up of the
life, by the shedding of His blood and therefore by His death, that
man is redeemed.

	The meaning of all this is that man is declared guilty by the law
and is under the sentence of death. Man has not that wherewith he can
redeem himself and escape execution of the sentence. The Son of God
came to earth and became a man. He lived a perfectly righteous life
in the sight of God's law and could have returned to heaven and come
into the presence of God because of His own righteousness. Instead of
so doing, He, the sinless One, died on behalf of the human race. He
paid the death penalty on behalf of man.

	Some teach that the blood of Jesus had as much value when it flowed
in His veins as when it was shed upon the cross. They also teach that
salvation is by the life that He lived among men, going about
teaching and doing good. This directly denies the Bible which teaches
that man is redeemed by the blood of Christ; for the blood could not
purchase our redemption, it could not be a ransom paid out, as long
as it was in His veins. Man's unwillingness to confess himself a
sinner is back of this teaching. To do away with the redemption price
is to deny the need of it. To deny the need of it is to deny sin and
the consequences of sin.

	The earthly life of Jesus never has and never can


redeem a single man from the penalty of the law. It is expressly
stated that He was "made under the law" (Gal. 4:4). That means that
Jesus lived on earth subject to God's law, including the Ten
Commandments, just the same as any Israelite of His day and before.
Therefore, by His perfect life He was saved from the penalty of the
law and had access to God, but most certainly no one else has had
such access by His earthly life.

	There is, however, a value to mankind in His perfect earthly life.
It is this. By being perfect He did not, as already mentioned, need
to die because of sin committed by Himself. He could, therefore, die
for others who were sinners and in so doing give His life a ransom
for them.

	The death of Christ, then, is the very center of salvation. But
there are those who will accept this statement and still deny the
need for the death of Christ as a redemption price. They say that the
death of Jesus is the supreme example of sacrifice for man to behold,
and by seeing that and living sacrificial lives men will be saved.
This cannot be so, for the Bible nowhere teaches that any moral
influence goes out from the cross that will cause unsaved men to be
good, or even better, and thereby make them acceptable to God.

	Redeemed From Under Law

	When God redeems man from the penalty or curse of the law, He also
redeems him from being under law. As already quoted, "God sent forth
His Son ... to redeem them that were under the law" (Gal. 4:4, 5). It
cannot be otherwise, for where the penalty is done away the force of
the law is also done away. The law is not law without the penalty.
From the moment a person is redeemed, God does not deal with him on
the basis of law, but on an entirely different basis and that is
according to grace. "Ye


are not under law, but under grace" (Rom. 6:14, R.V.). The law has
nothing more to say. It cannot declare the redeemed person guilty.
"There is ... now no condemnation to them that are in Christ Jesus"
(Rom. 8:1, R.V.). Redemption, then, results in an entirely different
attitude on the part of God toward those who are redeemed.

	Redemption Is From Sin and the Power of Sin

	When God deals with man on the basis of grace He continues the work
of redemption even to the extent of delivering from that for which
the law imposed the penalty, namely, sin. God's purpose in redeeming
man is not only that He might set him free from the penalty of sin
but also from sin in his life. "Jesus Christ ... gave himself for us,
that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a
people for his own possession" (Titus 2:13, 14, R.V.).

	The apostle Paul said that he was "sold under sin" and that there
was a "law of sin" in his body (Rom. 7:14, 23). Jesus said to the
Jews, "Everyone that committeth sin is the bondservant of sin" (John
8:34, R.V.). Man is surely in bondage under sin. Sin rules in his
life, but from that also there is deliverance. This deliverance is by
the power of God, and because He acts in grace on behalf of everyone
that is delivered from the penalty of sin. "Sin shall not have
dominion over you: for ye are not under law, but under grace" (Rom.
6:14, R.V.). This is so because the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus
sets the believer free from the law of sin and death which is
inherited from Adam (Rom. 8:2).

	Redemption of the Body

	The apostle Paul speaks of a still future redemption for which
believers are now waiting. "And ... even we


ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit,
the redemption of our body" (Rom. 8:23).

	In the death of Christ there is redemption from the penalty of the
broken law, and part of that penalty is physical death. Man's body
became mortal, subject to death and corruption. In that it became
subject to death, it became subject to sickness and disease. Man is
afflicted with all kinds of ailments. For these there is healing in
the death of Christ, but most emphatically, man has not yet entered
into the enjoyment thereof. Paul says, "We ourselves groan within
ourselves waiting for ... the redemption of the body." That day is
still in the future. It shall come, when by the trump of God, the
dead shall be raised incorruptible and the living believers shall be
changed. Then this corruptible shall take on incorruption, and this
mortal shall put on immortality (I Cor. 15:51-54). Not until then
shall the work of redemption be completed. Then there shall be
complete restoration. The effect of Adam's sin shall be entirely

	Redemption Is Unto God

	Redemption is not only from the penalty of the broken law; it is
also said to be unto God. "For thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us
to God by thy blood" (Rev. 5:9) is the song of praise to the Lamb
that the redeemed shall sing in heaven.

	All who are saved are not their own, they belong to Christ by right
of redemption. "What? know ye not that ... ye are not your own? For
ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and
in your spirit, which are God's" (I Cor. 6:19, 20).

	The purpose of redemption, then, is that God might have "a people
for his own possession" (Titus 2:14, R.V.).


	Redemption Is Eternal

	Just one more thought about redemption. Because Christ is infinite
and His blood, the redemption price, is incorruptible, redemption
must be eternal, and that is what God says of it (Heb. 9:12).
Therefore, that which God does for the believer because of redemption
must stand throughout all eternity.


                   7 God's Justice Satisfied

  IN the preceding chapter the value of the death of Christ as a
ransom price to redeem man from the penalty of the law was seen.
Christ's death was seen to be on behalf of man. In this chapter an
additional value, a value to God Himself in the death of Christ, is
to be considered. Failure to recognize that there is a value to God
in the death of Christ is the cause of much misunderstanding and
false teaching.

	Salvation is a work of God on behalf of man, but in order that He
might do this work He had to also do something on behalf of Himself.
God in love longed to save man from the consequences of Adam's sin.
Even as soon as Adam sinned God came in the cool of the evening and
called Adam and said, "Where art thou?" God's loving heart has ever
gone out to save fallen man. Few are aware of this important fact.

	But He who is love is also infinitely righteous. He is also
unchangeable. God's infinite and unchangeable righteousness and
justice demanded that the penalty of His law which the creature, man,
had broken, must be imposed and the execution of it carried out.
God's infinite justice therefore limited His own love. If God was to
save man, He had to do something on behalf of Himself so that He
could remove the consequences of sin without compromising justice.

	And God's love did find a way by which the limitation by justice
would be met and removed. "Herein is love, not that we loved God, but
that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our
sins" (I John 4:10). "And


he is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also
for the whole world" (I John 2:2, R.V.).

	To understand the meaning of these verses it is necessary to
understand the meaning of the word propitiation. It is "that which
... appeases [or satisfies] the divine justice and conciliates [or
wins over] the divine favor."

	The meaning of the above verses, then, is that love is expressed in
that God sent His Son to satisfy His own justice and to make it
possible for Him to extend favor to man. This expression of love is
not only for those who are saved but for all mankind.

	It is well to be here reminded of that which constituted the demand
of God's justice, and how Jesus Christ satisfied that demand. God's
justice demanded death because of transgression of His law. "In the
day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die" (Gen. 2:17).
God's love could not remit that penalty. It could not set it aside.
God's holy and righteous law must be upheld. His wrath against the
unrighteousness of man must take its course.

	When the Son of God was sent from heaven He came into the world as a
man. He lived here thirty-three years as a man, and in every detail
of His life He satisfied all that God's justice demanded. Then He
voluntarily went to the cross. He, the Creator of man, was, by wicked
men, nailed to the cross. There sin, as rebellion against God,
reached its climax, and then as He hung on the cross God laid upon
Him the sin of the whole human race. "Jehovah hath laid on him the
iniquity of us all" (Isa. 53:6, R.V.). That included the first sin by
Adam. It also included every sin of every one of the seed of Adam
born up to that time, and even more, the sins of all men yet to be
born. The sin of all was laid upon Him. Then God's judgment of sin
fell upon Him. "And ... Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying ... My
God, my God, why hast thou


forsaken me?" And "when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded
up the ghost" (Matt. 27:46, 50). Here was death because of the sin of
mankind. It was a double death: spiritual death because in being
forsaken by God He was separated from Him, and physical death in
yielding up the ghost. And that is exactly the curse that rested upon
man because of sin. "But he was wounded for our transgressions, he
was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was
upon him" (Isa. 53:5).

	The demands of God's justice had been met. The justice of God is no
longer a restraining influence to prevent Him from saving those who
will come to Him by the only way (John 14:6), even by Jesus Christ,
who is the propitiation for our sins.

	There is a statement in the Bible that clearly states that God's
purpose in sending His Son was on His own behalf. It was that He
might remain just and still justify the sinner. It is found in Paul's
great treatise on justification by faith. He there declares that God
set forth Christ as a propitiation that God might "be just, and the
justifier of him which believeth in Jesus" (Rom. 3:25, 26). According
to this, God could not remain just and justify any sinner apart from
the fact that the demands of His justice were met by Jesus Christ
when He died on the cross.

	Dr. C. I. Scofield in his note on Romans 3:25 calls attention to the
fact that the Greek word which is there translated "propitiation" is
also used in Hebrews 9:5 where it is translated "mercyseat." The
cross, then, where propitiation was made, because judgment was passed
upon sin, became the place where God shows mercy. That is the
essential meaning of the Cross of Christ. He who will come to the
Cross as the place where his own sins have been judged in the person
of Christ will receive mercy at


the hand of God. Because of the Cross, grace becomes sovereign and
reigns unto eternal life (Rom. 5:21).

	Throughout the ages of human existence man has realized that there
is a wrath of God that needs to be appeased before man can come unto
Him, but relatively few, indeed very few, know that God Himself has
provided a propitiation. After Adam had sinned he hid himself,
because, as he said, "I was afraid" (Gen. 3:10). Ever since then
there has been in the heart of man a fear to meet God because of His
supposed wrath toward man. Mythology is filled with stories of men
trying to appease their gods. So also the heathen go to great
excesses in trying to appease their gods. And the feeling that
something is demanded of man to satisfy the vengeance of God is far
from lacking in even so-called Christian lands. Every thought of man
that something can be done to lessen his punishment in the hereafter
is a confession that he feels that the wrath of God needs to be
appeased and that God is not favorably inclined unto him.

	The central truth of the gospel, the good news of the grace of God,
and that which is so little understood, is that the wrath of God
against all unrighteousness of man has been appeased in the death of
His own Son. His justice has been satisfied and now God, in love, is
longing to extend pardon and peace to all who will come to Him by the
way of the Cross.


                   8 Clothed in the Righteousness of God

  IN Chapter 7 it was seen that because Jesus Christ was set forth as
a propitiation for sin God can be just and justify the one who
believes in Jesus. It is important then to consider what it is that
God does in justifying man.

	The word in the original text translated "justify" is also
translated "righteousness." Justification must therefore be related
to righteousness, and so it is. Justification is the act;
righteousness is the result.

	In order that man may come into the presence of God he must have an
absolutely righteous standing in His sight. Any unrighteousness that
is charged against a man will keep him from seeing God. When God
justifies a person He provides that person with the necessary
righteous standing before Him.

	Justification is more than pardon and forgiveness of sin. Pardon is
negative. It considers the penalty due to transgression.
Justification is positive. It gives to man a meritorious standing.

	The difference between pardon and justification is excellently
illustrated by the events connected with a racial and military plot
which stirred the whole world a few decades ago. This illustration
has been used by others, but is well worth repeating.

	A Jewish soldier named Alfred Dreyfus showed such marked ability
that in 1891 he was appointed to the general staff of the French
Army. Three years later he was arrested, being charged with selling
military information to Germany. His trial resulted in dismissal from
the army, public degradation and commitment to the French


penal colony on Devil's Island. Due to popular demand, Dreyfus was
retried in 1899, but was again declared guilty. Because of public
dissatisfaction with the result of the trial, the President of France
pardoned Dreyfus. But the friends of Dreyfus were not satisfied with
a mere pardon, and in 1906 in a third trial Dreyfus was completely
vindicated. He was given the more advanced rank of major and enrolled
in the Legion of Honor.

	When Alfred Dreyfus was pardoned after the second trial, the penalty
of the crime of which he was accused was remitted. He was taken from
the penal colony on Devil's Island. He came back to his family and
friends, but the stigma of being a traitor rested upon him. But when,
through the third trial, he became vindicated and was promoted to the
rank of major and enrolled in the Legion of Honor, he was justified
before the whole world. He had a standing of perfect righteousness,
and in addition thereto was given recognition that comes only to
those who have served and brought honor to their country.

	This is exactly what happens when God justifies the one who believes
in Jesus. The only difference is that Alfred Dreyfus, an innocent
man, was falsely accused and convicted, while the one whom God
justifies is a truly guilty sinner, and deserves the penalty that the
law imposes.

	All Trespasses Forgiven

	Because man is a guilty sinner, it is necessary for God, in
justifying a person, first to pardon and forgive his sins. God's
forgiveness in saving a person is said to be the forgiveness of "all
trespasses" (Col. 2:13). This forgiveness of trespasses is not the
same as God's forgiveness of the child's sin against Himself as the
Father (I John 1:7-9). It is a judicial forgiveness by which the
sinner is declared


to be free from all trespasses. It is done once and for all when the
sinner comes to the Cross.

	God never treats sin lightly. His forgiveness is not a mere act of
leniency in remitting or setting aside the penalty, as when one man
forgives another. God forgives only because the penalty has been paid
by another, even by Jesus Christ. "For Christ also hath once suffered
for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God" (I
Peter 3:18). Because "without the shedding of blood is no remission,"
God's forgiveness demands redemption.

	For Christ's Sake

	Forgiveness by God is said to be "for Christ's sake" (Eph. 4:32).
Therefore, it involves the justice of God. Because Christ died and
thereby paid the penalty for sin, it would be unrighteous of God not
to forgive the one who accepts Jesus Christ as the propitiation for
his sins. If an earthly judge imposed a prison term or an alternate
fine, and a third party paid that fine, it would be unjust after the
penalty had been paid to imprison the one who had been found guilty.

	According to Riches of His Grace

	Though God's forgiveness involves His justice, it is also said to be
according to the riches of His grace (Eph. 1:7). This is so because
it was the love of God that sent His Son into the world (John 3:16)
and it was by the grace of God that He tasted death for every man
(Heb. 2:9). Notice, it is not only according to grace but the "riches
of His grace." There is no stinted forgiveness by God. It is both
free and full.

	The completeness of the forgiveness in this age is seen in
comparison with the forgiveness of the sins of the Old Testament
saints. In the Old Testament days forgiveness was accomplished by
removing the sin from the sinner (Ps. 103:12).


The sacrifices of the Old Testament were for an atonement for sin. To
atone for sin means to cover, but not to entirely do away with it. By
those sacrifices they that brought them could not be made perfect. By
them was a yearly reminder of sins. "For it is not possible that the
blood of bulls and of goats should take away sin" (Heb. 10:4). But
the Lamb of God takes away sin (John 1:29), and those who are
sanctified once for all by that sacrifice are perfected forever (Heb.
10:10, 14). This is a complete and unalterable judicial forgiveness
of sin which gives to the believer a standing before God as perfect
as though he had never sinned.

	This is beautifully illustrated by an incident that happened many
years ago. A newly married couple had invited members of their two
families to a Sunday dinner. The guests were seated around the table.
All desired to be at their best. As the rich brown gravy was being
passed, one young lady accidently tipped the bowl with a resultant
large brown spot on the immaculately clean and shining linen
tablecloth. The hostess quickly and skillfully scraped up the gravy
and spread a napkin over the spot and the meal went on. The napkin
did not take away the spot; it merely covered it so that the dinner
could go on. To the unfortunate young woman who had spilled the gravy
the white napkin was a constant reminder of her accident. So the Old
Testament sacrifices covered the sins of the Israelites, but they
were a constant reminder of sin. The day after the dinner the
tablecloth was washed and the spot taken away. So by the sacrifice of
Christ the believer is washed from his sins in His blood (Rev. 1:5).
There is no napkin to remind of sin.

	From this it is clear that when God deals with the sin problem of
the unsaved one, He does not ask him to put away his sins and live
right in the future. That is impossible


for anyone to do, and besides that there would still be unsolved the
whole problem of past sins. No, God judicially and completely
forgives every sin because Christ has paid the penalty for those
sins. What God asks the unsaved to do is to confess that he is a
sinner and accept Jesus Christ as having borne the penalty for his
sins. That is all anyone can do to receive God's judicial

	Man's Effort to Justify Himself

	In all ages man has tried to justify himself before God. He has
tried to produce a righteousness which would be acceptable to God.
When man does so it becomes self-righteousness and not a God-provided
righteousness. Self-righteousness does not, in fact cannot, save any
man. The Israelites of Paul's time went about to establish their own
righteousness. They even had "zeal for God" (Rom. 10:1-3), but they
were not saved because of that. These people were very religious.
They fasted and said long prayers. They observed all religious
holidays and carried on the temple worship. The reason they were not
saved was that in all they did they were trying to establish their
own righteousness, and that was not acceptable to God.

	So today man tries to establish a righteousness that he thinks
should be acceptable to God. He tries to follow Jesus' example and to
obey the Sermon on the Mount. He does the best he can to live up to
the dictates of his own conscience. Some join the church, become
baptized, say prayers, and take part in all kinds of religious and
philanthropic work. While these things have their place, the doing of
them can in no way add to the righteousness demanded by God of man,
in order that man may come into His presence.

	Some seem to think that God keeps books with them, charging them
with all evil deeds and crediting all good


deeds to their account. If the good deeds outweigh the evil ones they
think that they are acceptable to God. This cannot be God's method,
because He demands perfection in all deeds. It is not a question of a
high batting average. It means striking the first ball every time one
comes up to bat each day of his life from the cradle to the grave.

	Concerning all self-righteousness, the prophet Isaiah said "all our
righteousnesses are as filthy rags" (Isa. 64:6). It has been said
that the "filthy rags" here referred to were those worn by lepers and
therefore full of leprosy. As leprosy is typical of sin, the picture
is perfect, for all of man's self-righteousness is contaminated by
sin. All is done in dependence upon self instead of upon God, and
that, as has been seen, is the essence of sin.

	There are some who think that because the law, especially the Ten
Commandments, was given by God, the observance of it will give to a
man a righteous standing before God. That is impossible because God
requires absolute perfection and obedience, and man cannot render
such obedience. "For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet
offend in one point, he is guilty of all" (James 2:10). Because of
this, "by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in
his [God's] sight" (Rom. 3:20; See also Gal. 2:16).

	For four thousand years man had proved himself incapable of being
righteous. Both Jews and Gentiles had been proved to be under sin.
There was none righteous to be found, no not one (Rom. 3:9, 10). By
the law every mouth was stopped before God (Rom. 3:19). God's law
demanded righteousness by man, but man had failed.

	The Righteousness That God Demands He Also Provides

	No man begotten of Adam has lived a perfectly righteous life--one
that will gain admission for him into the


presence of God. "All have sinned, and come short of the glory of
God" (Rom. 3:23). But that perfect righteousness that God demands of
those who are to come into His presence He also provides. He will
Himself clothe with righteousness, as with a garment, all who accept
His righteousness as a free gift.

	While none of Adam's seed has been able to live a life of
righteousness acceptable to God, when the Son of God came to this
earth and became a true man and so lived, He fulfilled every jot and
tittle of God's law (Matt. 5:17, 18), and thus revealed a
righteousness acceptable to God.

	That the earthly life of Jesus was acceptable to God cannot be
questioned. Near the close of it, Jesus took three of His disciples
with Him up into a high mountain and was transfigured before them.
Moses appeared also with Him as the representative of the law, and
Elias as that of the prophets. With these two as witnesses, God spoke
out of the cloud saying, "This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well
pleased" (Matt. 17:1-5). This was a clear declaration of God's
acceptance of the earthly life of Jesus. Here was One who had not
sinned and come short of the glory of God. He was altogether
righteous and was so witnessed by the law and by the prophets.

	When the whole world stood guilty before God and it had been
demonstrated that no man could be justified by his own good works,
then God, in the person of His Son, living on this earth as a man,
revealed a righteousness acceptable to Himself. This righteousness is
now offered unto all as a gift and it is clothed (as a garment--Isa.
61:10) upon all that believe. This is the message of Romans 3:19-22.

	By Grace and Not of Works

	The Bible expressly declares that no man can earn this righteousness
by anything whatsoever that he might do.


It is said that it is reckoned to the account of all who believe in
Jesus Christ and that only because of their faith. "Therefore we
conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the
law" (Rom. 3:28). "But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him
that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness"
(Rom. 4:5. See also Gal. 2:16; 3:8, 24. Read Rom. chapter 4). Man is
therefore justified freely by the grace of God (Rom. 3:24).

	Through Redemption in Christ Jesus

	Justification is made possible through the redemption that is in
Christ Jesus (Rom. 3:24). It is because He was set forth as a
propitiation for sin (already explained) that God can righteously
forgive the sinner and reckon unto him Christ's perfect
righteousness. When God counted man's sin to Jesus Christ, He became
so thoroughly identified therewith that He was actually made sin and
died as a sinner. When God counts righteousness to the believer he
becomes so thoroughly identified therewith that he actually becomes
the righteousness of God and lives. "Him who knew no sin he [God]
made to be sin on our behalf; that we might become the righteousness
of God in him" (II Cor. 5:21, R.V.). Only a divinely prepared and
perfect righteousness will admit man into the presence of God. No
faulty man-made righteousness will do. Therefore it is only because
God counts righteous the one who believes on Christ that any man can
gain entrance into heaven.

	There is no St. Peter at the gate of heaven asking people what good
they have done to enter therein. The righteousness of God, which is
Christ, is man's only passport to heaven, but one who has received
that passport is certain to enter therein because nothing can ever be
charged against such a one. "Who shall lay anything to the charge of
God's elect? It is God that justifieth" (Rom. 8:33).


	Justification, then, is the imputation of the righteousness of
Christ to the one who believes on Him. It is counting to him the
merits of Christ. It gives to the believer a perfectly righteous
standing before God, as perfect as that of Jesus Christ, and is apart
from any merit on man's part. Justification is demanded by God's
holiness and supplied by His love.

	The Bible gives a perfect illustration of justification. It is
recorded in Genesis 3:21 in these words, "Unto Adam also and to his
wife did the Lord God make coats of skins, and clothed them." Adam
and his wife had sinned. They stood naked before God and under the
judgment of the broken law. By slaying innocent animals, God prepared
coats of skins and these He put upon Adam and his wife. By these
garments they were made fit for the presence of God. Notice that God
made the coats. Adam and his wife did not help in any way. God
clothed them. They did not even put the coats on. They gave nothing
to God for the coats. The provision of the coats necessitated the
death of an innocent third party.

	These coats were provided only after Adam had named his wife Eve,
because she was the mother of all living. By so doing, Adam (under
the judgment of death) showed his faith in God's promise that the
woman's seed (Jesus) should destroy the head or power of the serpent
which is Satan (Gen. 3:15, 20).

	Herein are all the elements of justification. God prepares a garment
of righteousness and in it He clothes all who believe in Jesus Christ
as the One who delivers from sin. Man can give nothing in return for
this garment nor can he put it on himself. The provision of
righteousness is made possible only by the death of an innocent, a
sinless, third Person, even Jesus Christ.


                   9 Brought Into Harmony With God

  IN sinning, as previously pointed out, the first man listened to the
tempter. He yielded himself to the influence and power of Satan and
so mankind became subject to his power. Because of this condition,
God in saving man must deliver him from the power of darkness.
Furthermore, it was seen that, in sinning, man violated God's law,
became guilty and came under the sentence of death. It was therefore
also necessary for God to redeem him from the curse of the law and
from under the law.

	There is one more thing that happened when man sinned. In
considering the subject of sin it was seen that because God created
man, all that man was and all that he had came from God. Therefore,
man's proper attitude toward God was one of complete dependence upon
Him. Man's sin consisted in a declaration of independence of God and
dependence upon self. This attitude taken by man was nothing less
than a rebellion against God and His sovereignty or government over
man, including His provision for man. When any group of people
declares its independence of a government under which they have
lived, it is a rebellion. If and when they are able to establish
their independence and exist as a separate government then their
action partakes of the nature of a revolution. Man has never been
able to establish an independent existence apart from God. There are
some who think and act as though they can do this very thing, but as
long as man cannot exist without God's sunshine, His air and His
rain, man cannot claim to be independent of God. All independence of
God by man, then, is and must be in the nature of a rebellion


against Him. The rebel human race was in need of reconciliation.

	In listening to the tempter's words, as has already been said, man
became subject to him. Thus man became alienated from God and an
enemy to Him. Herein also was need for reconciliation.

	After Adam and his wife had sinned, "they heard the voice of Jehovah
God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and the man and his
wife hid themselves from the presence of Jehovah God amongst the
trees of the garden. And Jehovah God called unto the man, and said
unto him, Where art thou? And he said, I heard thy voice in the
garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself"
(Gen. 3:8-10, R.V.).

	A change had taken place within Adam. He had become estranged from
God. He had alienated himself from Him. Fear of God had taken the
place of love, confidence and trust. Instead of drawing near to God
he drew away from Him. By his sin Adam became far off from God.
Friendship with God, with accompanying communion, companionship,
fellowship and intimacy, were lost and replaced by enmity and

	As Adam passed his sinful nature onto his posterity so also with it
he passed along the state of alienation from God and the feeling of
fear of Him.

	One need not go far to find evidence that mankind is still in that
estranged relationship to God. The evidence of man's fear for God can
be multiplied a thousandfold. Every effort on the part of man to
appease God and every effort to do something to gain God's favor is a
witness to man's alienation from Him. Every fear of death and
judgment to come testifies to the broken harmony between God and man.

	This state of alienation of all men from God requires a


special work on the part of God in behalf of man. Redemption from
under the law and from the penalty of the broken law made it possible
for God to justify man so that in the sight of His law man was
counted as perfectly righteous. But to be right with God on a
strictly legal basis does not necessarily mean to be on intimate
terms with Him.

	If one of two persons, who are very friendly with each other,
commits some illegal act whereby he harms his friend, it is possible
that the legal aspect of the act be settled without bringing the two
back into a state of friendship. They may forever remain alienated
from each other. In addition to a legal settlement there must be
brought about a reconciliation between them. So also, even though man
has been redeemed from the penalty of the law and is reckoned as
perfectly righteous in the sight of the law, he also needs to be
reconciled to God as a part of God's work of restoring that which was
lost to man by Adam's sin. Reconciliation, then, is an important part
of salvation.

	God's work of reconciliation is a work on behalf of man. When two
men are to be reconciled to each other it is possible, in fact
probable, that there is something wrong in each man that needs to be
corrected. They are reconciled to each other. Not so in the case of
reconciliation of man to God. Man is out of harmony with God and only
he needs to be reconciled. "God was in Christ [on the cross],
reconciling the world [mankind] unto himself" (II Cor. 5:19).

	To reconcile means to cause to be friendly again; to restore to
friendship; to bring back to harmony; to cause to be no longer at
variance. It was man that broke the friendship with God. Man, by
sinning, became a discordant note in God's universe. That which is in
man that brought about the discord and the alienation from God must


dealt with. And that is just what God does in reconciling man to
Himself, for "God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself,
not imputing their trespasses unto them" (II Cor. 5:19).

	In justification, which is because of redemption, man's trespasses
are considered as a violation of God's law and are forgiven because
Jesus Christ paid the penalty on the cross and man is restored to a
righteous standing before God's law. In reconciliation God deals with
the trespasses of man as that which expressed man's rebellion against
His authority, in fact, against His government, including His
provision for man.

	That which caused man to fear God, to hide from Him, to be at enmity
and out of harmony with Him, is not counted against man. That which
constituted rebellion is considered as though it had not taken place.

	The awfulness of the separation and alienation of man from God by
sin is best understood by considering the cost at which God brought
about reconciliation. It was by nothing less than the death of the
Son of God. It is said that "when we were enemies, we were reconciled
to God by the death of his Son" (Rom. 5:10). Again, "And you, that
were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet
now hath he reconciled in the body of his flesh through death" (Col.
1:21, 22).

	The penalty for rebellion against a human government is death. That
was well known by Benjamin Franklin when he said, "We must all hang
together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately." So also the
penalty for rebellion against God is death. Therefore when Christ
died on the cross to reconcile man to God He died there in man's
place as a rebel.

	When the Jewish leaders brought Jesus before Pilate they charged
that He had been found perverting the nation,


forbidding to give tribute to Caesar, and saying that He was king
(Luke 23:1, 2). All of these are acts of sedition, or rebellion, and
it was on these charges that Jesus was tried. Pilate, after having
examined Jesus, said to the Jews, "I, having examined him before you,
found no fault in this man touching those things whereof ye accuse
him: no, nor yet Herod: for he sent him back unto us; and behold,
nothing worthy of death hath been done by him. I will therefore
chastise him, and release him. But they cried out all together,
saying, Away with this man, and release unto us Barabbas: one who for
a certain insurrection made in the city, and for murder, was cast
into prison. ... And Pilate gave sentence that what they asked for
should be done. And he released him that for insurrection and murder
had been cast into prison" (Luke 23:14-19, 24, 25, R.V.). He who had
not committed rebellion died as a rebel and he who had committed
rebellion was set free, and that only because Jesus died. Had Jesus
not died, Barabbas would have been crucified. But Barabbas was not
alone in gaining his freedom through the death of Jesus. Jesus, by
the grace of God, tasted death for every man (Heb. 2:9) and that was
in order that the creature, man, who had made insurrection against
God, might become reconciled to Him.

	Sometimes men are called upon to make their peace with God. There is
nothing in the Bible on which to base that appeal. In fact, it
contradicts the statements that "he [Christ] is our peace" and that
He in His flesh has abolished the enmity and so made peace. (Eph.
2:14, 15). Man cannot make his peace with God; all he can do is to
accept the peace that has been made on his behalf by Jesus Christ on
the cross and which is freely offered by God. Reconciliation is a
work of God and of Him alone.

	Through reconciliation man enters from a state of enmity


against God into a state of peace with Him. When the Son of God was
born as a babe in Bethlehem, the angels proclaimed, "on earth peace"
(Luke 2:14). This meant that He who was then born should reconcile
man to God.

	Those who have become reconciled to God, instead of being far off,
are made nigh to God. They have access by the Spirit to the Father.
The feeling of fear for God is replaced with one of love and
confidence in Him. They are "no more strangers and foreigners, but
fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God" (Eph.
2:19). To be of the household of God means that all the goodness and
omnipotence of God is available unto them.

	Though man cannot make his peace with God, he must by an act of his
will accept the peace that Jesus Christ has made for him. God,
through the death of Christ, removed that which caused the enmity and
alienation, but each individual person must change his own attitude
toward God. He cannot maintain his rebellious attitude and become
reconciled to God. Paul, the apostle, said, "we are ambassadors for
Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ's
stead, be ye reconciled to God" (II Cor. 5:20). Only as man is
willing to surrender his dependence upon himself and his independence
of God can he become reconciled to God.


                   10 A New Life With a New Nature

  IN salvation God does more than deliver man from the power of
darkness, redeem him from the penalty of the law, and reconcile him
unto Himself. All this can be done for man and, though great as it
is, it does no more than restore to man that which was lost by Adam's
sin. In addition to this God makes of man a new and infinitely higher
being than Adam ever was. This is accomplished by regeneration, or by
being born again.

	A man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus came to Jesus one night and
said to Him, "Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God:
for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with
him" (John 3:2).

	It is well to consider the type of person Nicodemus was. He is
spoken of as a man, a descendant of Adam. As such he possessed Adam's
fallen human nature. He was a Jew, one of God's chosen people. He was
a Pharisee, one of the strictest religious sect of the Jews who were
separated unto legal self-righteousness. He was a ruler of the Jews,
therefore a member of their council, the Sanhedrin. He was the
teacher of Israel. To him others looked as to a guide in matters
pertaining to God. He was one who had earnestly endeavored to fulfill
the requirements of the greatest moral code the world has ever known,
the Ten Commandments and the Mosaic ordinances. Evidently in him was
found the highest type of manhood possible under the Mosaic law and,
in fact, any other moral code under which man has lived.

	Unquestionably Nicodemus lived up to the light that he had. He
constantly sought more, and so, as one who


desired to learn better how to live a life pleasing to God, he came
to Jesus to learn of Him. In Him Nicodemus saw a teacher come direct
from God.

	To understand the exact attitude of Nicodemus to Jesus it is
necessary to consider just what any teacher can do for the one who
comes to him to learn. All that a teacher can do is to instruct. The
learning must be by the student himself. The improvement in the life
of the student comes from the development of his latent talents.
These are stimulated by the teacher but no talents can be contributed
by the teacher that are not already in the student. To whatever
degree the life of a student can be developed it must necessarily
remain the same life as it was at the beginning. In coming to Jesus
as to a teacher, Nicodemus hoped to learn how to develop and improve
his life so that it would be pleasing to God. He had all his life
been reading the law as a guide to righteous living; now he came to
Jesus in the same attitude.

	It was to this attitude of desiring to improve himself that Jesus
answered Nicodemus and said: "Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except
a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God" (John 3:3).
Jesus' answer to Nicodemus is the answer of the Son of God to man's
desire to establish his own righteousness and by his own goodness
gain entrance into the kingdom of God. By this one answer, made to
one of the most religious, punctilious, educated, honored and
truth-seeking men of his generation, Jesus declared that natural man,
however refined, moral and educated he might become, cannot thereby
gain entrance into the kingdom of God and His heaven. There is not
that in man which can be developed into a life acceptable to God. How
this with one stroke sets aside all present-day teaching that Jesus
was the greatest teacher the world has ever known and that by
following His teachings one


can be saved! While the saved person should carefully consider the
teachings of Jesus [though some of them were for the Jewish nation
alone], the unsaved may all his life strive to follow these teachings
and still at the end of his life find heaven's door closed to him.
Jesus said, "Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of

	The word birth, when used literally, always means the coming into
existence of a new life. This life always partakes of the nature of
the parents. When a wolf or a sheep is born there is a new life which
has the wolf or sheep nature, as the case may be. When a child is
born into the world, a new life comes into existence. This life has a
human nature which, as has already been shown, is sinful. It is
shapen in iniquity and conceived in sin (Ps. 51:5). Such a life
cannot change its nature. The prophet Jeremiah wrote, "Can the
Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots? then may ye also
do good, that are accustomed to do evil" (Jer. 13:23). Nor can it be
said that in such a life there is a divine spark that needs but to be
stirred to bring that life into fellowship with God.

	Jesus explained that to be born again is to "be born of water and of
the Spirit" (John 3:5). This statement is illuminated by a verse in
Paul's letter to Titus, "Not by works of righteousness which we have
done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of
regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost" (Titus 3:5). To be
"born of water" is "the washing of regeneration." It is a cleansing
of the individual from sin "with the washing of water by the word"
(Eph. 5:26). Jesus said to his disciples, "Now ye are clean through
the word which I have spoken unto you" (John 15:3).

	To be born of the Spirit is to be born "not of blood, nor of the
will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God" (John 1:13).
It is to be "born again, not of corruptible


seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and
abideth for ever" (I Peter 1:23).

	By the new birth, God becomes Father of those so born and they are
called His children (I John 3:1), but apart from regeneration there
is no fatherhood of God for man in this age.

	With the new birth there is also a new nature. It is the nature of
God, the One by whom life is given. As the life of one born of the
flesh is mortal because Adam became mortal, so the life of one born
of God is eternal because God's life is eternal. This eternal life is
the present possession of all who are born again (John 5:24). One who
is born again cannot die. As the old life, born of the flesh, has a
sinful nature, so the new life born of God has His divine (II Peter
1:4) and sinless nature. "Whosoever is born of God doth not commit
sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is
born of God" (I John 3:9). This new life is not a development of a
"divine spark" in the natural man; it is a new and entirely distinct
life from God, just as the natural life is from the earthly parents.

	Jesus made it very clear to Nicodemus that the new birth and the old
natural, or physical, birth are separate and distinct. He said, "That
which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the
Spirit is spirit" (John 3:6). The two have nothing in common, in fact
they are in conflict with each other. "For ... the flesh lusteth
against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are
contrary the one to the other" (Gal. 5:17). "For they that are after
the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after
the Spirit the things of the Spirit. For to be carnally minded is
death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the
carnal mind [i.e. the mind of natural man] is enmity against God: for
it is not subject to


the law of God, neither indeed can be" (Rom. 8:5-7). "The natural man
receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are
foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are
spiritually discerned" (I Cor. 2:14).

	From the above it is evident that it is impossible by education,
culture or reformation to change the natural state of man into the
spiritual state of the kingdom of God.

	The new birth, then, is God's answer to that phase or aspect of the
sin problem which involves the sinful nature of man. In salvation God
gives to man through spiritual birth a new sinless nature like unto
His own.

	But how about the old sinful nature of those who are saved? What
becomes of that? It still lives on in the individual as long as that
person lives in the present mortal body. When at death the spirit of
the saved departs from his body then the old nature dies.

	It is because the old sinful nature survives that those who have
been saved can and do commit sin. This happens when, in the conflict
between the carnal and spiritual, the carnal gains the upper hand.
God's appeal to all who are saved is to "Mortify [put to death]
therefore your members which are upon the earth" (Col. 3:5) and
"Reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto
God through Jesus Christ our Lord" (Rom. 6:11).

	The New Creation in Christ Jesus

	The one who is "born again" is "created in Christ Jesus" (Eph.
2:10). "In Christ Jesus neither circumcision [i.e. Jews] availeth
anything, nor uncircumcision [i.e. Gentiles], but a new creature"
(Gal. 6:15). This creation takes the place of the old creation in
Adam. "If any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are
passed away; behold, all things are become new" (II Cor. 5:17). This


new creation is "the new man, which after God is created in
righteousness and true holiness" (Eph. 4:24).

	It is not difficult to understand that the angelic host, made up of
created beings, belongs to a creation entirely distinct from man.
There is even a greater difference between mankind as descended from
Adam and the new creation in Christ Jesus, for that new creation is
even higher than the angels. It is important to recognize that the
one who is born again belongs to this higher order of spiritual
beings. It is difficult to do so as long as the new life dwells in
the present mortal bodies of the old creation in Adam. In them there
is still much evidence of the old or first creation.

	It was seen that the first creation derived its sinful nature from
its federal head, Adam. By his sin all became sinners, and as the
penalty for that sin was death, so death passed upon all men.
"Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world [mankind], and
death by sin; and so death passed upon all men" (Rom. 5:12).

	The words which are written large over the first creation, that of
which Adam is the federal head, are SIN HATH REIGNED UNTO DEATH. That
condition is unalterable, for God had commanded Adam not to eat of
the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil and had made
death the penalty for disobedience. This meant death in its fullest
significance, physical and spiritual, and the second death, which is
the final everlasting separation of the body, soul and spirit from
God. God's commandment had been broken and the penalty could not be

	When the Son of God became flesh and came into the world, He dwelt
among men of the old creation. But He was not of it. He was not of
the seed of Adam, but of the seed of the woman. He was conceived by
the Holy Ghost. Therefore, He did not possess Adam's sinful nature.


was full of truth (John 1:14). He was in the likeness of sinful flesh
(Rom. 8:3), but no sin was in Him.

	Then, through infinite love, He identified Himself with the first
creation and took upon Himself the guilt thereof. He was the Lamb of
God which taketh away the sin of the world. As a result, He tasted
death for every man (Heb. 2:9). Even with Him, sin assayed to triumph
unto death.

	But God raised Him up, "having loosed the pains of death: because it
was not possible that he should be holden of it" (Acts 2:24). He
arose victorious over death. The Son of God? Yes, but also the Son of
man. With His resurrection there was a new creation raised by God out
of the death of the old. All who are saved are quickened together
with Christ in this resurrection. "But God ... even when we were dead
in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are
saved;) and hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in
heavenly places in Christ Jesus" (Eph. 2:4-6).

	As the first creation has one man as its federal head, so also has
the new creation the man Jesus Christ (Rom. 5:15). The first creation
received its sinful nature from its federal head, Adam. The new
creation received its righteous nature from its federal head, the man
Jesus Christ, for "by the obedience of one shall many be made
righteous" (Rom. 5:19). In each case, the nature of the creation
depends upon the act of the head. It does not depend upon the acts of
those who issue from those heads.

	As the unalterable law of the first is SIN UNTO DEATH, so the law of
law of the new creation is even more unalterable than that of the
first creation: "For if by one man's offence death reigned by one;
much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of
righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ" (Rom. 5:17).


Since the head cannot be condemned (Rom. 6:9,10), the members of the
new creation cannot be condemned.

	Salvation, then, includes something vastly more than a restoration
of man to the original perfect condition in which he was when
created. It includes a new eternal life having a divine nature. This
new life becomes the immediate possession of the one who believes in
Jesus Christ. All who are so "born again" become a part of the new
and infinitely perfect and righteous creation in Christ Jesus.


                   11 Saved By His Life

  PAUL, writing to the Christians in Rome, said, "For if, when we were
enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much
more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life" (Rom. 5:10).
Notice the two words, "much more." It is great that all who have
believed on Jesus Christ are reconciled to God by the death of His
Son. But it is a far greater thing that all who have been so
reconciled shall be saved by the life of the Son of God.

	This does not mean that they are saved by the earthly life of Jesus
and by following His example. The life here referred to is the
present life of Jesus Christ at the right hand of God in heaven. That
this is so is taught clearly by the following passage; "But this man
[Jesus], because he continueth ever ... is able also to save them to
the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to
make intercession for them" (Heb. 7:24, 25).

	The simple meaning of all this is that after Jesus Christ died on
the cross to set men free from the power of Satan, to redeem them
from the penalty of the law and to reconcile them unto God, He arose
from the grave and ascended into heaven where He now is in the
presence of God the Father. His work there is to see to it that all
who come to God by Him [i.e. His death] shall be saved from wrath and
brought into eternal glory in the presence of God where He now is.
This salvation is said to be to the uttermost.

	Because it is conditioned upon His continuing forever it must be a
continuing salvation, one that cannot be


terminated. Here, as always, salvation is represented as an unfailing
work of God.

	Just how those who have become reconciled to God by the death of His
Son are saved by His life is learned from the expression, "he ever
liveth to make intercession for them." In other words, because the
Son of man intercedes with the all-powerful Father on behalf of those
who come unto God by Him, God will exercise His power on their

	It is helpful to consider the nature of this intercession of Jesus
Christ with the Father. Instances of His intercession for His
disciples while with them on earth give some idea of how at the right
hand of God He now prays for all believers.

	Just before the betrayal and arrest of Jesus by the Jews, He said to
Peter, "Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he
may sift you as wheat: but I have prayed for thee, that thy faith
fail not" (Luke 22:31, 32). Bible readers are familiar with the story
(Mark 14:54, 66-72) how that after Jesus had spoken these words Peter
did deny Him three times. Did Jesus' prayer for Peter go unanswered?
It did not. Jesus did not pray that Peter should not be tempted.
Neither did He pray that Peter should not fail and deny Him. No, He
prayed that Peter's faith should not fail. And Peter's faith did not
fail. Though he sinned against his Lord by denying Him, even to the
point of cursing, his faith failed not. He was restored and in his
later life he was seen with an even stronger faith than before. So
Jesus now prays for those who come unto God by Him that their faith
fail not.

	There is another example of the Lord's intercession for His own. It
is found in the seventeenth chapter of John's Gospel. This whole
chapter has been called Christ's intercessory prayer. Jesus makes it
clear that this prayer is not


for the world (that is, all mankind), but only for those whom the
Father had given to Him out of the world (v. 9). This includes all
who believed on Him as the Son of God. But it was for many more than
those who were then living. It was not for them alone, "but for them
also which shall believe on me through their word" (v. 20). This
prayer, then, was for all who throughout the centuries since, even
down to this time, have believed the gospel message and accepted
Jesus Christ as their Saviour.

	What then did He pray on behalf of all believers of this age? His
first prayer for them was, "Holy Father, keep through thine own name
those whom thou hast given me" (v. 11). His first concern for those
for whom He had died and who had become reconciled to God by His
death was that they be kept safe. Even now this is His concern for
those who come unto God by Him. They shall be saved to the uttermost.

	Is there any possibility that this intercession by Jesus with the
Father shall go unanswered? To say so would be to say that God fails
to answer the petitions of His own Son.

	Then Jesus enlarged upon His prayer on behalf of His own. He said,
"I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that
thou shouldest keep them from the evil" (v. 15). It was a greater
prayer that they be kept from evil in an evil world than that they be
taken out of it so as to be kept from being lost. If there had been
any question about the greater petition being fulfilled, surely He
would have asked for the lesser. Therefore all who are His own,
because of His intercession, are being kept from the evil while in
this world. This does not mean that they do not fail at times, as did
Peter, but that the evil shall not overcome them.

	He further prayed, "That they all [all the saved of this age] may be
one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee,


that they also may be one in us" (v. 21). This is a prayer that all
believers may come into the same perfect unity (more than harmony)
with God the Father and God the Son that exists between them. No
finite mind can grasp the implications of this prayer but it is
nothing less than a divine position for those who believe on the Son
of God.

	Again He prayed, "Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast
given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which
thou hast given me" (v. 24).

	All of this is a part of His intercession for His own and all is a
part of being saved by His life.

	But there is another aspect to the intercession of Christ for His
own. His intercession may partake of the nature of the pleadings of a
lawyer before a court of justice. There are times when one who has
been saved commits sin. When that happens there is one who now has
access to heaven (Job 1:6) that brings accusations against the
sinning child of God. He is Satan, who is called the "accuser of our
brethren" and is said to accuse "them before our God day and night"
(Rev. 12:10). This condition calls for intercession by Him Who is at
the right hand of God. But the accuser (the prosecuting attorney) can
lay nothing to the charge of those for whom Christ intercedes. It is
written, "Who shall lay anything to the charge of God's elect? It is
God that justifieth. Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that
died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand
of God, who also maketh intercession for us" (Rom. 8:33, 34).

	There is another passage that presents the same truth. "My little
children [those born of God], these things write I unto you, that ye
sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father,
Jesus Christ the righteous: and he is the propitiation for our sins:
and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world" (I
John 2:1, 2).


	This teaches then, that when one who has been justified by God
because of the death of His Son commits a sin, he is accused before
God by Satan. He is charged with having broken God's holy law and is
therefore worthy of death. Then Jesus Christ, the righteous one,
steps in as attorney for the defense and pleads that His own death on
the cross paid the penalty for the particular sin in question and
therefore His client cannot be condemned. It is because of this
advocacy by Jesus Christ that there can be no condemnation for him
who is justified.

	This advocacy is not in any way conditioned upon confession,
repentance, prayer or anything else to be done by the one who sins.
It says, "If any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father." It is
well that it is so, for often unknown sins against God are committed
of which the believer could not be cleared if he first had to do

	This advocacy by Christ cannot of course enter into the life of any
believer as an experience. It is something that takes place in heaven
the instant that any child of God sins, and that is oftener than most
people think. It would not be known except that it is revealed by the
Word of God. The knowledge thereof, however, is of the utmost comfort
and assurance to all who have come to see this great truth and
realize how often even a saved person sins.

	This too, then, is part of being saved by His life. More might be
said on this subject, but that which has here been presented is
sufficient to show the importance of this part of God's work of
salvation. Because of it, one who has been saved shall be saved to
the uttermost, or to the end, as Heb. 7:25 might be translated. He
shall be safe as long as his intercessor lives and that is throughout
all eternity.


                   12 Objects of God's Unfailing Love

  IT has been shown (see page 46) that when the demands of God's
justice have been satisfied by the death of Christ and an individual
has accepted Him as the propitiation for sin, then the grace of God
becomes sovereign in the life of that individual. From that moment on
God deals with that person exclusively on the basis of grace. And as
grace is the expression of God's infinite love, he becomes the object
of God's love.

	After God has justified a person there is nothing that can separate
him from God's love. Paul exclaims: "Who shall separate us from the
love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or
famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? ... For I am persuaded,
that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor
powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor
depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the
love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord" (Rom. 8:35, 38, 39).

	The saved person is unalterably the object of the love of God and
God deals with him on that basis alone. Let no one think that God
ever becomes angry with one who has been saved. There is no wrath of
God at any time upon those who have accepted Jesus Christ as Saviour.

	God's love for the world gave His Son. To those who receive the Son,
God's love supplies all that they need to fulfill His purpose with
them under every circumstance in life. "He that spared not his own
Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also
freely give us all things?" (Rom. 8:32). The "all things" are those
that pertain to the Son and to His kingdom and


therefore do not necessarily include material and temporal things. In
fact, God might, and often does, withhold from His children material
blessings, that His spiritual blessings may become greater.

	Suffering on the part of those who are saved can be understood only
as one sees that it is always confined to the realm of the material
and the temporal. In suffering, material or temporal things are
withheld or taken away. The body may become afflicted, plans may go
wrong, friends lost, and many other things may happen. All of these
are a withdrawal of those things that come to man from God as from
the Creator to the creature. They are a part of His providence. When
God's child so suffers, except through his own violation of natural
laws or because of his own neglect, then God withholds the lesser
temporal blessings of His providence that He may better give of His
greater spiritual blessings from His grace.

	The man born blind was so born that the works of God might be made
manifest in him (John 9:1-3). Mary and Martha, whom Jesus loved, went
through days of deep sorrow. "For the glory of God, that the Son of
God might be glorified thereby" (John 11:4). And Paul, who knew
suffering, said; "I reckon that the sufferings of this present time
are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed
in us" (Rom. 8:18).

	There is one definite provision of God's love for all who are His
that causes suffering. It is known as chastening. "My son, regard not
lightly the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou are reproved
of him; For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every
son whom he receiveth. It is for chastening that ye endure; God
dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is there whom his father
chasteneth not? But if ye are without chastening, whereof all have
been made partakers, then are ye bastards,


and not sons" (Heb. 12:5-8, R.V.). This teaches that everyone who
becomes a child of God is chastened.

	To understand the meaning of God's chastening one must carefully
notice a fine difference of meaning in three words: punish, chastise
and chasten. All three imply visitation of distress and affliction
upon a person, but there is a great difference in the purpose for
which these are inflicted. Punishment is imposed because of guilt,
because the law has been broken, and in order to satisfy justice.
Those who do not accept Jesus Christ as the propitiation for their
sins shall be "Punished with everlasting destruction from the
presence of the Lord" (II Thess. 1:9). This shall be that the justice
of God might be satisfied. God never punishes His children.

	Chastisement implies specific guilt, as under law, but the object
thereof is correction and reformation of the offender. It is not
satisfaction of justice as in punishment.

	Chastening implies imperfection in the one chastened, but never
guilt. The purpose is not to satisfy justice, but always and only to
purify from errors and faults. Gold is chastened in order that all
impurities may be removed from it.

	Chastening, then, is an expression of the love of God the Father. By
it He visits affliction upon those who have been freed from
punishment under the law, that they may be purified from that which
is not in harmony with His holiness.

	The purpose of chastening is that it shall yield "Peaceable fruit
unto them that have been exercised thereby, even the fruit of
righteousness" (Heb. 12:11, R.V.).

	Another provision of God for those who are saved is that He, on
their behalf, exercises all of His omnipotence. One who has believed
is not left to his own resources to carry on. Paul in writing to the
saints in Ephesus (and all believers are saints) said that he did not
cease to make


mention of them in his prayers that they might "Know ... what is the
exceeding greatness of his power" toward those who believe. Then he
describes the greatness of the power that God exercises on their
behalf. It is even the same power by which Christ was raised from the
dead and set at God's own right hand in the heavenly places far above
all principalities, and power, and might, and dominion, and every
name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is
to come: and put all things under His feet (Eph. 1:16-23). In all the
Bible there is no greater description of the omnipotence of God than
this, and it is momentarily exercised by God on behalf of every
believer, even the most weak and failing. That power guarantees the
accomplishment of His purpose in salvation.

	Because God's love freely gives all things with Christ, and purifies
from that which is out of harmony with Himself, and because His
infinite power is constantly in operation on their behalf, there is
in salvation a perfect provision for all who are saved.


                   13 The Eternal State of the Saved

  MANY who call themselves Christians say that they are not concerned
about the future state. What they are interested in is the present.
The Bible, however, teaches that the future state is of the greatest
importance. In the first place, the present life is limited to a span
of a few years while the future is an eternity. Secondly, while there
are glories of salvation to be enjoyed by the believer, even while in
the present body, there is still the presence of sin and its
consequences of poverty, sickness, death, and sorrow which will never
be removed during the present life. In fact, the earthly existence of
the saved man is but a period of preparation for an eternal state.
There seem to be but few who realize the glories that await those who
are saved and the exalted position which is to be held by them
throughout an unending eternity. Finite minds cannot grasp the
fullness of all this but the Bible reveals enough to show that it
shall be the greatest thing that has ever come to any of God's

	The eternal state for believers of this age shall be ushered in by
the return of the Lord Jesus Christ. "For the Lord himself shall
descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel,
and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ [all who are saved]
shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught
up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and
so shall we ever be with the Lord" (I Thess. 4:16, 17). "We shall not
all sleep [die], but we shall all be changed, In a moment, in the
twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound,
and the dead shall be raised


incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put
on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. So when
this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal
shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the
saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory" (I Cor.
15:51-54). This is the blessed hope for which believers are now
waiting. When this shall have taken place then God, by His work of
salvation, shall have removed every particle of the results of Adam's
sin, including corruption and mortality.

	But there shall be much more than that. The saved shall forever be
"with the Lord." This was His promise to His disciples; "I go to
prepare a place for you ... I will come again and receive you unto
myself; that where I am, there ye may be also" (John 14:2, 3). Even
before the foundation of the world believers of this age were of God
the Father chosen in Christ to be holy and without blame "before him
in love" (Eph. 1:4). Jesus speaking to His Father said: "Father, I
will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am;
that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou
lovedst me before the foundation of the world" (John 17:24). In the
presence of God the Father, enjoying His love in company with the Son
of God, and beholding His glory, is the certain prospect of every
saved person. But it is still more than that.

	They shall not only be with Jesus Christ, they shall be like Him.
"Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what
we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like
him; for we shall see him as he is" (I John 3:2). "As we have borne
the image of the earthy [Adam], we shall also bear the image of the
heavenly" (I Cor. 15:49). For the Lord Jesus Christ "Shall change our
vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body"
(Phil. 3:21).


	To be conformed to the image of the Son of God suggests a position
of great glory. And so it is, for the call by the gospel is "To the
obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ" (II Thess. 2:14).
Though it has not yet been experienced by them, it has already been
given by Jesus to those whom the Father has given Him (John 17:22).
And, "When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also
appear with him in glory" (Col. 3:4).

	But there is even more in store for those who are saved than to be
free from the consequences of sin--to be forever with Christ, to be
conformed to His image and to receive His glory. They are to enter
into a perfect union with God. This is infinitely more than harmony.
The angels are in perfect harmony with God, but they belong on a
different plane. They are of another class. Jesus prayed to His
Father; "Neither pray I for these [the disciples] alone, but for them
also which shall believe on me through their word; That they all may
be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may
be one in us" (John 17:20, 21). This can be nothing less than being
elevated to the level of God, for only so can there be the same unity
as now exists between God the Father and God the Son.

	There are other declarations concerning the saved of this age which
support this statement. "For we are members of his [Christ's] body,
of his flesh, and of his bones. For this cause shall a man leave his
father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two
shall be one flesh. This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning
Christ and the church" (Eph. 5:30-32). Here the relationship between
Christ and the saved is the same as between husband and wife. As a
man and his wife must be on the same level so must it be with Christ
and the Church. The ultimate for the saved then, is to be raised to a
divine level.

	If God had only saved man from sin and restored him to


Adam's original state that alone would have been marvelous. To have
done a little more and given him the position of an angel would have
been greater. To have given to him the order of the archangel, or a
seraph or cherub would have been still greater; but God does
infinitely more than that--He raises the saved of this age even to
His own level.

	Because the fact is so seldom recognized it is well to repeat that
the marvel of this becomes all the greater when one remembers that
Lucifer desired to be like the Most High and tried to bring it about
by his own efforts. It was also the promise by Satan that man would
be like God that caused him to sin and rebel against God. That which
both Lucifer and man sought by self-effort and in rebellion against
Him, God freely gives to those of His rebel creatures who will but
accept His own Son as the propitiation for their sins.


                   14 Salvation Is of God Through Jesus Christ

  BECAUSE of man's inborn sinful nature causing him to depend upon
himself, he insists upon contributing something to his own salvation.
It is the hardest thing for man to learn that he cannot do so. That
is undoubtedly why the Bible at every point reiterates the fact that
that which is done in salvation is of God--God the Father, God the
Son, and God the Holy Spirit. It therefore seems needful to look
still further at God's own emphasis upon the fact that salvation is
of Him and Him alone.

	To think that man can be brought back into fellowship with God and
into union with Him by anything that man can do or that man can
contribute is to fail to realize the awful gulf of separation between
man and God that was caused by sin. Nothing less than God's work can
span that chasm.

	To hold that man can contribute anything toward being saved is to
fail to understand that the finite cannot contribute to the
infinite--it is to fail to realize the utter helpless and sinful
condition of fallen man.

	It is therefore necessary for all to realize with David, the
Psalmist, that "Salvation belongeth unto the Lord" (Ps. 3:8), that
"The Lord is ... my salvation" (Ps. 27:1), and that, "He only is ...
my salvation" (Ps. 62:2).

	Salvation Has Its Source in the Love of God

	God does not only love man, He is love (I John 4:8). It is by such
as He that salvation is wrought. That salvation


is the expression of God's love is repeated over and over again in
the Bible.

	"For God so loved the world [i.e. mankind], that he gave his only
begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but
have everlasting life" (John 3:16). As the measure of God's love is
here said to be His Son, and He is infinite, so God's love for
mankind is infinite and cannot be limited by man's sin. "But where
sin abounded, grace [God's love in action] did much more abound"
(Rom. 5:20).

	The following passages declare that salvation is because of God's
love. "But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were
yet sinners, Christ died for us" (Rom. 5:8). "In this was manifested
the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten
Son into the world, that we might live through him. Herein is love,
not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be
the propitiation for our sins" (I John 4:9, 10). "But God, who is
rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, ... hath
quickened us [made alive] together with Christ" (Eph. 2:4, 5).

	It is an expression of God's love that those who are saved are
called the children of God (I John 3:1), and His correction or
chastening of His children, as was seen in Chapter 12, is also
because of His love for them (Heb. 12:6). It is God's purpose that
they shall throughout eternity be before Him in love (Eph. 1:4). And
Paul declares in the most emphatic terms that nothing can separate
those who have been justified, from the love of God which is in
Christ Jesus.

	Salvation, then, is a work of God for fallen man and is prompted by
His infinite love. Is it not an insult then to God's love to hold
that man must or even can do something, however little, to contribute
to its perfection?


	That salvation is of God alone apart from any contribution by man is
evident from the source and the execution of God's plan of salvation.

	Salvation was planned and purposed before the earth was created and
that was long before God brought man into being. Believers were
chosen in Christ before the foundation of the earth (Eph. 1:4).
Eternal life was "promised before the world began" (Titus 1:2). The
death of Christ on the cross as "the Lamb of God, which taketh away
the sin of the world" (John 1:29) was "foreordained before the
foundation of the world" (I Peter 1:20). Salvation was decided upon
in the councils of God long before man came into existence. Surely
man had nothing to do with those plans.

	Regeneration, or being born again, by which man receives eternal
life and enters the kingdom of God, (John 3:3, 5) is of God. It is
expressly said to be "not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor
of the will of man" (John 1:13). As no man ever contributed to his
physical birth, so can no man contribute to his spiritual birth. When
he is so born he is saved for all eternity because he has eternal

	The Holy Spirit reproves the unsaved world of sin (John 16:8, 9).
Christ has redeemed by His own blood unto God (Rev. 5:9). "God was in
Christ [on the cross], reconciling the world unto Himself" (II Cor.
5:19). "It is God that justifieth" (Rom. 8:33). "The just shall live
by faith" (Rom. 1:17), but Jesus is the author and finisher of that
faith (Heb. 12:2) and it is God who works in believers "both to will
and to do of his good pleasure" (Phil. 2:13). Believers are kept safe
by the power of God and that through His own name (I Peter 1:5 and
John 17:11). Finally, the Lord Jesus Christ shall change the bodies
of all believers so that they may be fashioned like unto His glorious
body (Phil. 3:21). Many more passages might be


quoted, but these are sufficient to show God's own emphasis upon the
fact that it is He who saves man. Where in all this is there room for
man to contribute anything? By the very nature of the things that are
done that is impossible.

	"The Lord is ... my salvation."

	"He only is ... my salvation."

	Through Jesus Christ

	These are days of apostasy when the doctrine of the Trinity is
widely rejected and the Unitarian idea, which denies the deity of
Jesus Christ and teaches that salvation is by character, is being
taught. It is therefore highly important to notice what the Bible
teaches as to the place of Jesus Christ in salvation. It is
impossible to consider God's salvation as offered in His Word without
realizing that Jesus Christ is the Saviour and that salvation is
through Him. But because of the denial of Christ's work in salvation
it is needful to point out that apart from Him there can be no
salvation for man. To reject that teaching is to reject the very
central message of the Bible.

	Jesus said to His disciples, "Ye believe in God, believe also in me"
(John 14:1). It is not enough to believe in God--to acknowledge that
there is a God who created and provides for man. It is equally
necessary to believe in His Son Jesus Christ. This is so because no
one can come to the Father except by Him. He said, "I am the way, the
truth, and the life; no man cometh unto the Father, but by me" (John

	He is the way; that is, the way to God. No man can find God apart
from Jesus Christ. No man has seen God but the Son of God. When He
lived on earth as a man among men He declared God to man. He is the
truth and He is the life. To reject Him is to reject both truth and
life and the only way to God. "He that hath the Son hath


life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life" (I John

	It has been told by a missionary to the Congo that the natives of
that land believe that there is a heaven and a hell. They also
believe that it is impossible for man, because of his wicked
condition, to go to heaven; he must go to hell. Therefore they
worship Satan, the ruler of hell. They offer sacrifices to him so as
to lessen their punishment in hell. To them there is no way to God
because they know not of Jesus Christ, the only way to heaven and the
Father. They do not commit the error of those who hold the unitarian
viewpoint, disregarding the only Way and seeking to go to God by
their own merit. In seeing their own inability to please God, the
Congo natives see the truth better than many who call themselves

	Man, because of sin, has been separated and shut out from God. He
can only come to Him by Jesus Christ. "Neither is there salvation in
any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men,
whereby we must be saved" (Acts 4:12). "The Father sent the Son to be
the Saviour of the world" (I John 4:14). "As many as received him,
[the Son] to them gave he [God] power to become the sons of God"
(John 1:12). "He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and
he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of
God abideth on him" (John 3:36).

	That there is no salvation apart from Jesus Christ, He who was truly
Son of man and also Son of God, is further proved by the fact that
the Bible, in speaking of the things that pertain to salvation,
consistently makes mention of the fact that these are either in
Christ, by Him, with Him or through Him. He is always related to that
which God does in saving man.

	The following are but a few of the many references to


Jesus Christ in His identification with salvation. They show the
vital part that He has in salvation. God's eternal purpose with
regard to salvation for this age was purposed in Christ Jesus (Eph.
3:11). Believers were chosen in Jesus Christ before the foundation of
the world (Eph. 1:4). God saves, "According to his own purpose and
grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began" (II
Tim. 1:9). He is the "Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the
world" (John 1:29). The exceeding riches of the grace of God in His
kindness toward the saved is through Jesus Christ (Eph. 2:7). In the
Son, "We have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of
sins" (Col. 1:14), and this is because He is the propitiation for the
sins of the whole world (I John 2:2). God has made peace through the
blood of His cross, to reconcile all things unto Himself by Him (Col.
1:20). Believers are made accepted in the Beloved Son (Eph. 1:6;
Matt. 3:17), and are complete in Him (Col. 2:10). They are the
workmanship of God "created in Christ Jesus unto good works" (Eph.

	There is not one conceivable thing that God does for man in
salvation that is done apart from the Son of God, and God's Word is
very particular always to mention that fact. Therefore, there can be
no salvation to the one who has no place in his life for Jesus Christ
as the Son of God.

	If salvation is of God alone and His work is done exclusively
through the medium of His Son, where is there room for any
contribution on the part of man?


                   15 By Grace Through Faith, or How Is Man Saved?

  THERE is a very important question that comes to every person. It is
this: how is it possible for any individual to enter into all of the
things that are included in salvation? What must be done, if
anything, to be saved? The Bible, when properly interpreted, gives a
simple and definite answer.

	Salvation is by grace on the part of God and received through faith
on the part of man. "For by grace are ye saved through faith; and
that not of yourselves: It is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any
man should boast" Eph. 2:8, 9).

	By Grace

	Grace is one of the greatest words in the Bible. It speaks not of
what man does for God but what God does for man. It may be said to be
God's abounding provision through the operation of His infinite, or
unlimited, love on behalf of one who will believe in Him. It is the
kindness and love of God toward man, whereby all that the Christian
is and all that he has is provided through Jesus Christ. "He that
spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he
not with him also freely give us all things?" (Rom. 8:32).

	God is love, and grace is that love in action.

	Grace is always unmerited. In fact man's demerit is that which makes
grace possible. Had man not sinned then Jesus Christ could not by the
grace of God have tasted death for every man (Heb. 2:9).


The operation of grace is not hindered by sin, nor is it limited
thereby. "But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound" (Rom.
5:20). "God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet
sinners, Christ died for us" (Rom. 5:8). Some one has said, "Grace
works not by what it finds, but by what it brings."

	All that is included in salvation is by grace. It is not only that
which God does to remove man's sin and guilt and restore that which
was lost by the failure and sin of man. It includes all that God does
in conforming redeemed man into the likeness of His own Son and
placing him in a state of eternal glory.

	Salvation in its fullest sense, including the past, present and
future work of God for the believer, is one continuous series of acts
of grace. "The Word [the Son of God] was made flesh and dwelt among
us, ... full of grace and truth. And of His fulness [of grace] have
all we [who believe] received, and grace for [upon] grace" (John
1:14, 16).

	It was by the grace of God that Christ tasted death for all men
(Heb. 2:9). Sins are forgiven according to the riches of God's grace
(Eph. 1:7). Sinners are justified freely by His grace (Rom. 3:24),
and grace reigns unto eternal life (Rom. 5:21). Paul said, "By the
grace of God I am what I am" (I Cor. 15:10), and God said that His
grace was sufficient for him (II Cor. 12:9). By grace there is
deliverance from the power of sin in the life of the believer (Rom.
6:14). It is by grace that the believer maintains a proper conduct
toward the world and with fellow saints (II Cor. 1:12). Gifts for the
perfecting of the saints, the work of the ministry and for the
edifying of the body of Christ are said to be grace given to the
saints (Eph. 4:7, 12, 13). There is grace by which believers may
serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear (Heb. 12:28).


Liberal giving of material things out of deep poverty and under great
trial of affliction, but with abundance of joy is said to be a grace
bestowed on the churches of Macedonia (II Cor. 8:1-4). And God is
able to make all grace abound toward believers; so that they will
always have sufficiency in all things and may abound in every good
work (II Cor. 9:8). There is grace to help in time of need (Heb.
4:16). The heart becomes established with grace (Heb. 13:9), and God
has given an everlasting consolation and good hope through grace (II
Thess. 2:16).

	In addition to all this there is the promise of grace that is to be
brought to believers at the revelation of Jesus Christ (I Peter
1:13). Surely all this is grace upon grace by Him who was full of
grace and truth. Salvation is all by grace.

	Not of Yourselves

	Man can contribute nothing to his own salvation because it is "not
of yourselves." It is well that it is so, for man is fallible and
finite and all that he does of himself is destined sooner or later to
failure. Therefore if he did add anything to accomplish his own
salvation his salvation would be imperfect and incomplete. But
salvation is entirely of God and that which He does is perfect and
shall not fail. "It is ... by grace; [and therefore of God] to the
end the promise might be sure" (Rom. 4:16).

	When one considers the infiniteness of salvation, how could it be
possible for fallen, sinful and undone man to contribute anything
that might in the least be recognized by God as being given as
payment for that which He freely gives or as contributing to that
which He does?

	Neither is it a matter of surrendering the life or the heart to God
or yielding the life to Him. That is a part of sanctification and not
in any way a condition for receiving eternal life. If it were
necessary, salvation would be by


works. There is, however, a surrender that must be made in order to
be saved. It is necessary to surrender or to yield any and all
dependence upon one's own righteousness as a means toward being

	As the essence of sin is man's desire to depend upon self and be
independent of God, every effort of man to do something himself
instead of completely depending upon God becomes just one more sin
committed by him and keeps him from God.

	The hardest lesson for man to learn seems to be that he can do
nothing whatsoever to aid God in His saving work.

	Not of Works

	Salvation is also said to be "not of works." This is emphasized
elsewhere in God's Word. "Not by works of righteousness which we have
done, but according to his mercy he saved us, and called us with an
holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own
purpose and grace" (Tit. 3:5; II Tim. 1:9).

	These passages most definitely exclude, as a means to salvation, all
that can be called human works, such as obedience to the Ten
Commandments, fulfilling the golden rule, joining a church or
religious organization and participating in religious and social
work. All religious exercises such as prayers, fasting, penance and
self-denials, baptism and any other strivings on the part of man to
earn or merit salvation are ruled out. Not that many of these things
have no value in the sight of God, but they contribute nothing
whatsoever toward gaining salvation and man's entrance into a state
of eternal bliss with God.

	It is not even a matter of putting away sin. That is a matter for
the saved, or justified, person to do.

	Salvation cannot be of works, for then it could not be by grace.
"And if by grace, then is it no more of works:


otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works then is it no
more grace: otherwise work is no more work" (Rom. 11:6). "Now to him
that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt" (Rom.

	Lest Any Man Should Boast

	Salvation is not of works lest any man should boast. This is so that
no flesh shall glory in the presence of God (I Cor. 1:29). How this
puts to naught all the stories about men coming up to the pearly
gates and being questioned by St. Peter as to the good that they have
done to gain admittance! That is one place where man shall not glory
in his own achievements.

	The Gift of God

	Salvation is the gift of God. It must be a gift to be by grace. Here
again merit on the part of man is excluded for that which is given on
condition of merit or goodness is not a gift but a reward. Salvation
then is not in the slightest a reward that God gives for good
conduct. This again teaches that people do not enter heaven because
of the good that they have done.

	Through Faith

	Inasmuch as salvation is by grace and is a free gift from God and is
in no way of man nor because of any good or meritorious thing that
man can do, it is evident that man's part in salvation is merely to
depend upon or trust God to perform, and to accept that which God
freely gives. That is exactly what the words "through faith" mean.

	Faith is counting God sufficient to meet every need and able to do
even that which seems utterly impossible. Abraham is called the
father of all them that believe (Rom 4:11). Of him it is said, when
God promised a son


though contrary to all natural conditions; "He staggered not at the
promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith ... being
fully persuaded that, what he had promised, he was able also to
perform" (Rom. 4:20, 21). Abraham did not make the mistake of putting
circumstances between God and himself but rather depended upon God to
overcome that which to him seemed utterly impossible. This is the
meaning of faith. From this it is evident that faith is opposed to
human reason, for the latter considers circumstances and man's own
judgments instead of depending upon the workings of an omnipotent and
infinite God and receiving His revelations as found in the Bible.

	It is also evident that faith is not work. In fact it is ceasing to
work, for one who counts upon God to do that which He has promised
ceases to depend upon himself to do that selfsame thing (Heb. 4:9,
10). It is an acknowledgment of one's own inability to work. This is
always an element of faith.

	There is no merit in faith. "It is of faith, that it might be by
grace" (Rom. 4:16). If there were the slightest merit in faith, it
could not be a channel through which grace could work. It would be a
counter agent to grace which, as has been seen, by its very nature
excludes merit on the part of man. Faith does not only exclude the
thought of merit, it actually includes the idea of helplessness and
hopelessness. In faith one depends upon another to do that which one
is unable to do for oneself. A child in the family is ill and near
death. The family physician is called. In so doing the parents
confess their own inability to deal with the illness and express
their confidence in the doctor. There is no merit in calling the
doctor. Their faith in the doctor merely gives him the opportunity to

	To believe in God is to commit oneself to Him. In John 2:24 it is
said that Jesus did not commit Himself to the


Jews because He knew all men. The Greek word here translated "commit"
is translated "believeth" in John 3:16 where it is said that
"whosoever believeth in him shall not perish but have everlasting
life." This might correctly read, "Whosoever committeth himself unto
Him shall not perish, but have everlasting life."

	It might be well to emphasize the fact that saving faith is not in a
dogma or religious system but is in a Person. It is in that Person
fulfilling His promise. Jesus said, "He that heareth my word and
believeth him [God the Father] that sent me, hath eternal life, and
cometh not into judgment, but hath passed out of death into life"
(John 5:24, R.V.). Faith is also in the Son of God. "For God so loved
the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever
believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life" (John
3:16). It is also in the name of the Son of God. "But as many as
received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even
to them that believe on his name" (John 1:12). "His name" stands for
all that He is and all that He did to redeem man from the penalty of
sin. To believe on Christ and in His name is to receive Him as the
one sent from God, who came to save sinners and to give eternal life.

	Faith then is not to believe things about Jesus: that He was a
historical person, that He was a great teacher or a good man nor even
that He came to be the Saviour of the world. There must be a personal
dependence upon Him to save--a committal of oneself to Him. He came
into the world not to help men to save themselves. He came to save
that which was lost--that which was beyond all human help.

	Again, faith is not a mere mental assent to the above facts
concerning Him and His work. It is a heart relationship to Him. "For
with the heart man believeth unto


righteousness" (Rom. 10:10). Any real dependence upon God must come
from the heart.

	Jesus gave a clear illustration of what faith in Him means. He said
to Nicodemus, "As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even
so must the Son of man be lifted up: that whosoever believeth in him
should not perish, but have eternal life" (John 3:14, 15). The
Israelite in the wilderness (Num. 21:5-9) showed his faith by looking
upon the serpent of brass that hung on the pole. In this one act of
faith was expressed a confession of sin and utter helplessness and an
acknowledgment that God's provision was his only hope. He did not
understand the significance of the serpent, nor why it was made of
brass. He did not analyze his faith to see if it was strong enough or
of the right kind. He did not question the intensity of his look. He
surely claimed no merit for looking. There were just two things in
his mind: his own absolute hopelessness and the sufficiency of God's
provision, the object of his faith. And this is all that there is to
that faith through which the lost are saved. There is no power in
faith that contributes to salvation. The saving power comes from God.

	One more illustration of faith might be helpful. A traveler was
taking his first trip across the Atlantic. During the first night out
he was awakened from his sleep and immediately realized that he was
far out at sea and the only thing between himself and death by
drowning was the ship. It was a helpless feeling. The noon before he
had committed himself to that ship because he had confidence in it.
In that dark hour of the night he reassured himself of the
trustworthiness of it and went back to sleep. So a sinner may depend
upon Jesus Christ and commit himself to Him as the means of being
brought to God, and can rest in full assurance of His


	Because faith is dependence upon God, it is clear that God's
condition upon man to be saved is a return to the state of perfect
dependence upon God which Adam had before he sinned. But in one sense
it is more than that. Adam's perfect dependence upon God was as the
creature to his Creator and sustainer. In salvation, in addition to
this, it is full dependence upon God's provision in Jesus Christ to
take away sin and the consequences thereof and to give all things
with Him.

	Repentance and Confession

	There are two elements of saving faith which need to be mentioned.
They are repentance and confession. There are some who seem to think
that these are not necessary for salvation. Others emphasize their
importance to such an extent that they become conditions in addition
to faith. Both of these positions are wrong. It is impossible to
believe on Jesus Christ as one's personal Saviour without repenting
of sin and confessing that one is a sinner.

	For a sinner to repent of sin is for him to change his mind
concerning sin, and there can be no dependence upon God to save
without this change of mind. As long as one sees nothing wrong in sin
but finds pleasure therein and is perfectly satisfied to remain
independent of God and His Son Jesus Christ one will have no desire
to be saved. As a part of dependence upon God for salvation one will
think of sin as the terrible thing that it really is. It will be seen
as disobedience to God, as contrary to His holiness and as enmity
against Him, and most of all as that which separates from Him. A real
right about face regarding sin takes place. If there be no such
experience one may well question the reality of the faith in the

	To insist upon a repentance that in any sense includes the idea of
remorse or a demand for a change of conduct


either toward God or man, as the works of repentance preached to the
Jewish nation by John the Baptist (Luke 3:7-14) or as in penance, is
to add an element of works or human merit to faith. This necessarily
makes faith void because it is impossible to depend completely upon
God as long as one tries to contribute something, however little,

	So also in the matter of confession. It is impossible to accept, or
believe on Jesus Christ as the Saviour from the penalty of sin,
without confessing that one is a sinner and utterly unable to do
anything to remedy the condition.

	One who thinks himself righteous needs no saviour, in fact,
self-righteousness is the greatest hindrance to being saved. The
Pharisees of Paul's time could not become saved because they were
self-righteous (Rom. 10:1-3). "Jesus came into the world to save
sinners" (I Tim. 1:15). It was for sinners that Christ died (Rom.
5:8). Only by accepting salvation as a sinner can a person be saved.

	To confess oneself as a sinner is not the same as to confess one's
sins. It is far more fundamental and self-abasing. It is possible to
confess many sins and still claim a great deal of human merit. To
confess to God that one is a sinner is to exclude all human merit.
Furthermore it is impossible for anyone to confess all of one's sins.
Many have been forgotten and others may not even have been recognized
as such. To confess part of one's sins and not all would be of no
avail because all sin must be forgiven in order to be saved.

	There is a place for confession of individual acts of sin, but that
is for the believer who has committed sin and who seeks forgiveness
(I John 1:9).

	Any emphasis upon repentance or confession that gives to these the
nature of being meritorious is in addition to faith and must be
excluded, for then they become works,


and works, as has been shown, have no part in salvation.

	This has already been said, but can stand repetition. The great
difference between Christianity and all the religions of the world is
that God offers salvation as a free gift of His infinite love to all
who will but receive it from Him by merely acknowledging their need
thereof and accepting, or claiming it; whereas, every religion apart
from Christianity demands some work on the part of man to earn favor
with God. There is much in the world that is called Christianity
which demands merit on man's part. This is not Christianity, and
insofar as human merit is demanded, it denies God's offer of
salvation by grace through faith.

	God's Word says that salvation is of grace (God's unmerited favor),
that it is received through faith (dependence upon God), that it is
not of oneself, that it is the gift of God and that it is not of
works, in order to exclude boasting because of human merit.
Therefore, man certainly can do nothing but humbly receive it from
God. All effort on the part of man to earn salvation by that which is
in the least meritorious is dishonoring to God.


                   16 The Certainty of Salvation

  LARGE numbers of Christians go through life without any certainty as
to whether or not they are saved. Many even hold that one cannot be
certain about this matter. Many others, while never questioning the
fact of their salvation, are not sure that they shall be kept safe
from final separation from God and from His Judgments because of sin.

	The lack of certainty as to the future is the cause of much, yes,
very much, of the world's economic distress. Assurance is of
inestimable value in all phases of human life. So also in the
spiritual life of all who are saved, it has a most important place.
Fortunately, God's Word has not left man in the dark in this
important matter.

	How Can One Be Sure He Is Saved?

	All doubts and uncertainties as to whether or not one is saved can
be traced to one of three causes. It might be due to the fact that
man is prone to consider his own feelings. While emotions have their
right place in the life of one who is saved, they have nothing to do
with the fact of salvation. Uncertainty might also be due to a
feeling that one is not good enough to be saved. Salvation never
depends upon the goodness of man. It depends upon the goodness and
love of God and man's acceptance thereof. Finally, uncertainty may
come from man's reasoning about salvation. As soon as man begins to
reason, he is off the ground of faith. As faith is God's only
condition placed upon man to be saved there must be uncertainty when,
because of reason, doubts take the place of simple faith.


	When any man who is known for his truthfulness promises that he will
do something, his word is accepted and his fellow men act in full
assurance that he shall do as he has said. God is known for His
truthfulness. He cannot lie (Titus 1:2). "God is not a man, that he
should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he
said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not
make it good?" (Num. 23:19). Therefore that which God says in His
Word can be accepted without the least hesitation on the part of man.
God's Word must always be the basis for knowledge about salvation. In
speaking of salvation God uses very definite and clear terms which
need no interpretation, but sometimes a re-emphasis because man's
preconception blur their clarity.

	One of the most definite statements concerning man's present
possession of salvation came from the lips of Jesus. He said;
"Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and
believeth him that sent me, hath eternal life, and cometh not into
judgment, but hath passed out of death into life" (John 5:24, R.V.).
Notice that the statement begins with a double "verily" as though it
was necessary to emphasize strongly that which follows because of
man's slowness to rest in the assurance that it is true. Then, in the
words "I say" Jesus declares Himself as the authority for that which
is said. The statements that follow must necessarily be accepted as
the direct Word of God, and true. To question them is to question the
truthfulness of the Son of God.

	Concerning everyone that believes, Jesus said that he has eternal
life. He did not say that he might or even shall receive it at some
future time after death. It is a present possession of all who
believe. As this life is eternal it cannot die. It is not mortal as
is the physical life. It is impossible now to have eternal life and
not be saved for


time and eternity. This one statement should suffice, but it is
followed by another. The one who believes shall not come into
judgment. The judgment for his sins fell upon Jesus on the cross and
therefore no judgment awaits the believer. One who shall not come
into judgment must be saved and saved now. There is even a third
statement declaring the present saved condition of one who believes.
He has passed from death unto life. This means nothing less than
having passed from the state of being lost (death) into the state of
being saved (life). It is an accomplished fact. In view of these
three statements, attested to by the Son of God Himself, there can be
absolutely no question whatsoever as to the present salvation of
everyone who believes. The only question that can possibly raise a
doubt in any person's mind is, Have I believed? To believe has
already been explained (Chapter 15) as meaning to depend upon God and
to count on Him to do that which He has promised. It is to depend
upon Jesus Christ as the propitiation for one's own sins as explained
in Chapter 7 and includes a change of mind as to sin and a confession
that one is a sinner and needs to be saved. It is an intensely
personal matter between God and the believer. Certainly, no one needs
question whether or not he or she has believed.

	Can One Be Certain of Being Kept Safe?

	The above passage not only gives assurance as to a present
salvation. It also assures the one who believes that there can be no
future failure in his salvation. One who has received eternal life
cannot die spiritually and be lost. One who shall not come into
judgment cannot be lost because it is in the judgment that the lost
are declared to be forever separated from God. One who has passed
from death unto life has passed from the domain of Satan (Chapter 5)
into the kingdom of the Son of God and that kingdom


is a sealed state (Eph. 1:13). It is not subject to change.

	In viewing the greatness of salvation it was seen that it could not
be measured by rules applying to creation, but only by the infinite
terms applying to God. If one who has been saved can be lost this
could not be true because there would be a time limit to salvation.
If a person remained saved for but a few years, salvation would be
but a temporal work. But God says that it is eternal (Heb. 5:9).

	All the things that God does in saving man are of such a nature that
the possibility of failure at any point is shut out. Redemption from
the penalty of the law was with the incorruptible blood of Jesus
Christ. This redemption price can never lose its value. It assures an
eternal redemption (Heb. 9:12). One who has been redeemed can never
again become guilty under the law.

	Justification is by God counting the infinite righteousness of Jesus
to the one who believes. There can never be found any flaw in that
righteousness. This was made possible because man's sins were
reckoned to the account of Jesus and He paid the penalty therefor. As
all the demands of God's justice were then satisfied there can never
be any charge brought against the person that has been justified.

	When the justice of God has been satisfied nothing whatsoever can
limit the operation of His love. All who are redeemed, justified and
reconciled to God are unalterably subject to His grace, which is the
full expression of His infinite love. They are the objects of God's
power, even the same power that He exercised in raising Jesus from
the dead and setting Him far above all things in the universe.

	By regeneration man is born into the kingdom of God just as truly as
by the natural birth he has been born into the human race. That
spiritual life which is born of God (John 1:13) partakes of the
divine nature and therefore


cannot sin (I John 3:9). It was sin that separated man from God.
Because the spiritual life cannot sin, it can never be separated from

	He who is born again is in a new creation in which the fixed law is
"grace reigns through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus

	All who are reconciled to God by the death of His Son shall be saved
by His present life in heaven where He ever lives to intercede on
their behalf.

	As salvation is exclusively of God, as it is by grace and therefore
unmerited by man, and as fallible man can contribute nothing toward
his own salvation, there is no point at which there can be failure.

	Salvation of one who believes in Jesus Christ is as certain and as
enduring as is God Himself.

	There are many passages in the Bible that declare the certainty of
salvation but only one needs to be quoted here. "My sheep hear my
voice, and I know them, and they follow me: and I give unto them
eternal life; and they shall never perish, and no one shall snatch
them out of my hand. My Father, who hath given them unto me, is
greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of the
Father's hand" (John 10:27-29, R.V.).

	In view of all this, need anyone question his own salvation and
whether or not he has been saved for all eternity?

	Note. An exhaustive study of the security of the believer is found
in "Shall Never Perish," by the author.


                   17 Why Does God Save Man?

  WHEN one considers the awfulness of man's sin against God and God's
omnipotence, which includes the power to create another being to take
the place of man, if and when he were destroyed by God's judgments,
there comes a question that demands an answer. It is this: Why does
God save man?

	That Man Shall Not Perish

	The first answer to this question is found in John 3:16. "For God so
loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever
believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." Here
God's purpose is in consideration of man. God knows as no one else
the awfulness of an everlasting destruction from His presence and
from the glory of His power (II Thess. 1:9) which shall be the lot of
those who are not saved. His love, and that at the cost of His own
Son, would spare the creature from this punishment even though
through sin he had become an enemy. The importance to man of being
saved from perishing is so great that no one this side of eternity
shall ever realize it even in a small degree.

	Unto Good Works

	Some lightly and mistakenly say that to them salvation is more than
"a fire escape from hell." Its importance to them is for the present
life. It is true that one of God's purposes in saving man relates to
man's life on this earth, but the eternal values of salvation far
outweigh any temporal advantages as the infinite is greater than the


	Furthermore, God's purpose for the earthly life of the saved person
is that eternal values may result therefrom. In connection with the
statement that salvation is by grace and not of works it is also
stated that it is so in order that there may be good works by those
who are saved. "For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus
for good works, which God afore prepared that we should walk in them"
(Eph. 2:10, R.V.). God does not save man because of man's good works,
but that it may be possible for man to do good works. Neither does
God save man and deliver him out of an evil world and the power of
darkness, to continue a life of sin as before. While God's ultimate
purposes in salvation are eternal, the new nature given to one who
has been saved is necessarily reflected in his present earthly
existence. Paul said, "How shall we that are dead to sin, live any
longer therein?" (Rom. 6:2) and in writing to Titus he said, "I will
that thou affirm constantly, that they which have believed in God
might be careful to maintain good works" (Titus 3:8). It was to be a
constant affirmation by Titus that good works were to be maintained.
Certainly God's purpose for the life of every saved person is that he
do good works. Even His grace abounds toward the saved that they
"always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every
good work" (II Cor. 9:8).

	It is important to recognize just what constitutes good works. First
of all, there are only certain ones who can perform good works. They
are those who are "created in Christ Jesus" thereto. Only those who
are saved can do works that God will accept as good.

	Again, not all of the works by those who are saved are "good works."
The "good works" of the saved were "afore prepared that we should
walk in them." That which has been prepared by God beforehand must be
according to


His will and purpose. Therefore many seemingly good works by saved
people which are self-willed and planned do not come under God's
"good works."

	Evidently these works, in order to be good, must be to the glory of
God and not for the glory of man. "Whatsoever ye do, do all to the
glory of God" (I Cor. 10:31). "And whatsoever ye do in word or deed,
do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the
Father by him" (Col. 3:17).

	Much of the present day social welfare work which is often prompted
by deeply sympathetic feelings and carried out with much sacrifice
cannot be included in God's good works because God is entirely left
out. It is not done by saved people. The works are not "afore
prepared by God" and the objective is not the glory of God. It cannot
be denied that these works have an unmistakable value, but that value
is a temporal one and has no relation to God's work of salvation
which involves eternal values.

	If and when the social work is done as a means of bringing to the
needy not only temporal help but also spiritual and eternal aid
through salvation, then it becomes "good works" according to God's
purpose in salvation.

	The good works are good because they have a part in the carrying out
of God's whole program of salvation, and are not in themselves the
ultimate objective. They are, as it were, a link in the chain of
thing that shall finally culminate in the praise of the glory of God.

	To the Glory of His Grace

	If God had only had in mind the matter of salvation from everlasting
separation from Himself and unto good works, His work of salvation
could have stopped far short of what it does. It would only have been
necessary to have restored man to Adam's original condition in the


of Eden. He could there continue in everlasting bliss and fellowship
with God and carry on good works. But, as has been seen, God does far
more than restore man to Adam's original state. Consequently there
must be another and even far greater reason for God to save man. And
so there is.

	That it was the love of God that caused Him to save man suggests the
possibility that in salvation God found a way to express His love as
in no other way. Jesus in His prayer to His Father said, "The glory
which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as
we are one ... that the world may know that thou hast ... loved them,
as thou hast loved me" (John 17:22, 23). That part of God's work of
salvation through which the glory of Christ is given to those who
accept Him is here expressly said to be in demonstration of God's
love for them.

	Ephesians 2:7 teaches that salvation is in order "That in the ages
to come he [God] might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his
kindness toward us through Christ Jesus." Ephesians 1:5, 6 declare
that the saved have been predestinated "unto the adoption of children
by Jesus Christ to himself ... to the praise of the glory of his

	"The heavens declare the glory of God" (Ps. 19:1). That glory is the
glory of His creative power. When God's work of salvation has been
consummated and they who are saved during this age have been brought
into a perfect unity with God then shall there be praise, not only to
the glory of His creative power, but to the glory of His grace. This
is the very highest pinnacle of God's glory, and to accomplish this
is the greatest reason why God in this age saves man.

	Lucifer, in sinning, refused to give unto God His due glory. So also
Adam and the entire human race, because of sin, have not glorified
God as God. In saving man, His lost and rebellious creature, God does
so, not only to restore


the lost glory due Him as creator, but to gain a far greater glory,
the glory of the Redeemer and the Saviour.

	If man could contribute the least bit to salvation, by just that
much would the praise of the glory of the grace of God be reduced. He
could not be praised for that which man contributed. The glory of His
grace must be absolute. It cannot be marred. An infinite God cannot
be infinite if His glory is diminished by the slightest amount.

	That is why human merit and the works of man are excluded as a
contributing factor in salvation. That is why no flesh shall glory in
His presence (I Cor. 1:29) and that is why the basic principle of
salvation is by grace through faith.

	In salvation God does not salvage something that is good in man. He
takes an utterly lost and condemned sinner, and raises him apart from
any of his own merit to His own divine level and glory, all to the
end that the glory of His grace may be praised.

	Only as it is seen that the great purpose of God in salvation is to
the praise of the glory of His grace, is it at all possible to
understand why God does not destroy man (who rebelled and tried to
make himself like God) but instead actually transforms him into that
exalted condition that he, in rebellion, sought to gain. There can be
no greater manifestation of grace than that. Nothing could call forth
praise to the glory of God's grace more than that action. Herein is
also a reason why God permitted man to sin.

	"O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God!
how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out!
For who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been his
counsellor? Or who hath first given to him, and it shall be
recompensed unto him again? For of him, and through him, and to him,
are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen" (Rom. 11:33-36).


                   18 Salvation and Man's Conduct

  WHILE it is of the utmost importance to recognize that God says
nothing whatsoever in His Word to the unsaved about the matter of
conduct, and that salvation is offered as a free gift apart from the
question of conduct, it is not to be assumed that there can be
indifference in this matter on the part of those who are saved. God
does not try to improve or reform an unsaved person because however
much such a one might become improved, he still cannot measure up to
God's demand for righteousness and thereby secure a standing before
God as one who is righteous. Another reason why the unsaved are not
urged by God to improve their conduct is that there is no power
within them to live a life according to God's standard for those who
are saved. The question of Christian conduct must, therefore, never
be considered in relation to being saved. To do so is but to confuse
the issue. After a person has accepted Christ as Saviour then, and
only then, does God appeal to that person in the matter of how his
earthly life should be lived.

	In salvation God freely gives to man a new position before Himself.
Before a man is saved his standing before God is that of a sinner (a
sinner by nature and because he commits sin) and he is under the
condemnation of death. After he becomes saved, he stands before God
entirely upon the merits of Jesus Christ Himself. He is a child of
God because he has been born again, and is every moment so considered
by God. He is a member of the family of God. He is clothed in the
very righteousness of God and nothing can be charged against him to
alter that condition. He


stands before God as the object of His unalterable love and full
measure of His grace. This standing before God is entered into the
moment a person believes on, or receives Jesus Christ as Saviour.
Because it depends solely upon the merits of Christ, the position is
the same for the most stumbling and failing Christian as for the most
godly saint.

	That it is possible for any man so to stand before God is known only
because it is revealed in God's Word. It is never known because of
one's experience. But because of his knowledge thereof the saved
person enters into rich experiences.

	It is the fact of this perfect standing before God that is always
made the basis for God's appeals to the saved in matters of conduct.
They are exhorted to live their earthly lives in harmony with their
standing and with what they are in their saved state.

	The following serves as a limited illustration of this condition.
The children born into a royal family are taught and trained and
exhorted to conduct themselves as royalty which they are by birth.
They are an honor to the king only as they so conduct themselves.
There are many things they cannot do that are not forbidden to other
children. On the other hand, to the street waif of the lower east
side of New York City there can be no appeal to live as a son of a
king because he does not hold that position.

	All of the writings in the Bible that are addressed to believers of
this age hold with perfect fidelity to this principle. For every gift
of grace there is an appeal to a life consistent with that gift.

	It would be most inconsistent for those who have been delivered from
the power of darkness and translated into the kingdom of the Son of
God to continue to live according to the practices of their former
state. So the appeal to them is: "For ye were sometimes darkness, but
now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light ... And have


no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather
reprove them" (Eph. 5:8, 11).

	All who are saved have been redeemed from the penalty of the law by
the payment of a ransom price, even by the blood of Jesus Christ. The
appeal to godly living because of this reads: "For ye are bought with
a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit,
which are God's" (I Cor. 6:20). While it is contrary to human reason
that God should give His own Son in death to redeem man from the
death penalty of the law, and can be explained only on the basis of
love, it is most reasonable to expect that one who has been so
redeemed and given an eternal position with God should spend the days
of his earthly life so that God might thereby be glorified. This is
not a compulsion but because of what God in love has done.

	Paul writing to the Christians at Rome, in a message that also
applies to all Christians of today, said: "I beseech you therefore,
brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living
sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable
service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by
the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and
acceptable, and perfect, will of God" (Rom. 12:1, 2). Notice that
this which Paul urged the believers to do he called a "reasonable
service." This was no small thing. Its reasonableness is because of
the "mercies of God." What are these mercies of God? They are all
that is related to justification by the grace of God through the
redemption that is in Christ Jesus because He was set forth as a
propitiation for sin (Rom. 3:24-26). Surely one whose every sin has
been forgiven and to whom God has freely reckoned divine
righteousness because His own Son has died to satisfy His justice,
ought to present himself to God,


renounce the things of this world, and seek to live according to the
will of God.

	In reconciliation, the saved person, who had been afar off from God,
is made nigh to Him. But many who have been reconciled are not living
in close contact with Him. It is not only their privilege to do so;
they are admonished to "draw near with a true heart in full assurance
of faith ... Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without
wavering; ... And let us consider one another to provoke unto love
and to good works" (Heb. 10:22-24).

	He who is born again is born of the Spirit. The Spirit of God dwells
within him. Because of this condition Paul could write to the
Christians at Corinth: "What? know ye not that your body is the
temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God ...
therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are
God's" (I Cor. 6:19, 20).

	He who is born again is a new creation in Christ Jesus (II Cor.
5:17). Because of this he is admonished to "put off concerning the
former conversation [behavior] the old man, which is corrupt
according to the deceitful lusts; ... put on the new man, which after
God is created in righteousness and true holiness" (Eph. 4:22, 24).

	Though some are not fully aware of it, all who are children of God
have a blessed hope of seeing Jesus Christ their Lord and being
changed into His image. This fact is made the basis for a strong
appeal for a pure and godly life. "Beloved, now are we the sons of
God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that,
when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as
he is. And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself,
even as he is pure" (I John 3:2, 3). The unconditional promise to all
believers to become like the


Son of God should be the greatest possible incentive to godly living.

	Unsaved men (and also many who are saved) think of conduct only in
terms of compliance with a moral code. None of the above appeals is
in the nature of such compliance. They are appeals to a new life on a
divine plane, even while the saved are still on this earth. Only as a
person realizes and enters into those things which come to him
through salvation can these appeals have any meaning to him. That is
another reason why conduct is not a matter for consideration until
one has been saved.

	In contrast to the above, under the law that was given by Moses,
man's standing before God was always conditioned upon that which he
did. If he fulfilled the law God blessed him. If he failed to fulfill
the law he became subject to severe curses. Both blessings and curses
were faithfully predicted to Israel by Moses in his farewell address
to them (Deut. 28).

	There is much, indeed very much, confused thinking because the order
under the Mosaic law is not distinguished from God's order under
grace. Under law, because of the fact that the standing before God
depended upon what man did, it was possible to lose one's standing
and the blessings that went with it, and in the place of being
blessed one became cursed. Under that condition the motive to conduct
became one of fear of punishment. That motive to a very large extent
underlies human conduct. It is the controlling motive in most lives.
It is only natural that the unsaved man should think that fear is the
motive for godly conduct, but when one who has been saved still
thinks of fear as the impelling motive for conduct there is a great
loss in that life. The motive to true Christian conduct is love. Paul
wrote, "The love of Christ constraineth us" (II Cor. 5:14). It is the
love of God that gave His


Son that whosoever believes shall not perish (John 3:16). It is the
love of Christ who gave Himself to save the lost. It is the love of
God by which all who are saved are called the children of God (I John
3:1). It is divine love as expressed in all that has been done to
save man and that is being done and shall be done to consummate the
work of salvation.

	That fear is not the motive for Christian conduct is clearly stated.
"For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye
have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father"
(Rom. 8:15). "For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of
power, and of love, and of a sound mind" (II Tim. 1:7).

	Christian conduct, then, is the result of that which God does in
saving man. Love, not fear, is the true motive thereto. These two are
contrary, the one to the other. "There is no fear in love; but
perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that
feareth is not made perfect in love" (I John 4:18).


                   19 What Does It Mean to be Lost?

  JESUS said of Himself, "For the Son of man is come to seek and to
save that which was lost" (Luke 19:10). Paul writes, "But if our
gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost" (II Cor. 4:3). The
word "lost" here applies to persons, and it tells of the state of
these individuals in their relationship to God. Because Jesus came to
seek them, it is evident they who are lost must be away from God.
They have not received the benefits of the gospel of grace, for the
good news of a free salvation is hidden to them because their minds
have been blinded by Satan, the god of this world (II Cor. 4:4). As
these statements are applicable to those who are not saved, it
follows that all who are not saved are lost.

	Men do not become lost because of anything they do. They are lost
until they become saved. Only Adam and Eve became lost and in them
the whole human race. Jesus Christ came into the world that men might
be saved from their lost condition.

	Inasmuch as those who are lost are not saved, to be lost means first
of all to be without any and all of the great benefits, previously
explained, that come to man through salvation. But it means more than
that. Just as few realize how much is included in salvation so also
only a few realize what it means to be lost and how terrible the
destiny of the lost shall be.

	God's Estimate of the Present State of the Lost

	Salvation includes deliverance from the power of darkness (Chapter
5). Therefore, to be lost means to be in


the realm over which Satan has sway and consequently to be outside of
the kingdom of God. It is to be in that realm which as a whole is at
enmity with God.

	God, in His Word, gives an estimate of the present condition of the
lost. They are said to be dead in trespasses and sins (Eph. 2:1, 5).
Death in the Bible always means separation. Physical death means the
separation of the spirit from the body. Spiritual death means the
separation of the spirit from God and the second death means the
everlasting separation of spirit and body from God (Rev. 20:14). To
be dead in trespasses and sins is to be spiritually dead--spiritually
separated from God.

	Someone has defined death as being out of correspondence with
environment. To be spiritually dead is to be out of correspondence
with God.

	When Adam and Eve took of the forbidden fruit (Gen. 3:6) they died
spiritually. Their sin separated them from God. Sin has ever since
separated man from God. That is why those who are not saved are dead
in trespasses and sins.

	It is not only sin in the form of gross immoralities such as murder,
drunkenness, adultery, falsification, bribery and the like, but many
other things that are not even considered as sins. All that does not
measure up to the perfection and holiness of God is sin. It is said:
"All have sinned, and come short of the glory of God" (Rom. 3:23).
Even the most moral and refined are separated from God by sin.

	What is more, every man is a sinner by nature, because he is a
member of a sinful race descended from Adam, the original sinner.
Until any man has the sin question settled with God, he is separated
thereby from Him.

	What it means to be dead in trespasses and sins is learned from the
changed attitude of Adam toward God after he had sinned. He hid
himself from the presence of God among the trees of the garden
because he was


afraid (Gen. 3:8-10). Those who are spiritually dead are afraid of
God. Something deep down in the heart, though at times dormant,
causes the unsaved, as Adam did, to fear to meet God. Little do they
realize that, as God in love sought Adam, so God even now in love is
seeking them to bring them into complete harmony and union with

	The lost are said to be without Christ, having no hope, and without
God in the world (Eph. 2:12). To be without Christ is to be without
the only means of coming to God and receiving His benefits. Jesus
said: "I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the
Father, but by me" (John 14:6). To be without Him is to have no hope
as to the future state. To be without God is to be without the
Creator and Sustainer of man and the universe. It is to be without
God as Father. It is to be "far off" from Him (Eph. 2:13). Yes, those
who are without God still enjoy much of God's providence but they
have no claim upon His care and provision. They have no standing
before Him because they belong to a rebel domain. It is only in the
name of Jesus Christ that any man can claim anything from God. Jesus
said: "Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall ask the
Father in my name, he will give it you" (John 16:23). The lost cannot
ask in the name of Him whom they have not received.

	Those who are saved have been called out of darkness into God's
marvelous light (I Peter 2:9). The unsaved are still in darkness.
They are said to be "darkened in their understanding, alienated from
the life of God, because of the ignorance that is in them, because of
the hardening of their heart" (Eph. 4:18, R.V.). Men may be very
intellectual as far as the things of this world go, but in darkness
as to spiritual things. The god of this world has blinded the minds
of them that believe not lest the light of the glorious


gospel of Christ should shine unto them (II Cor. 4:4.).

	The unsaved are called the sons, or children, of disobedience (Eph.
2:2). This is so because they "obey not the gospel [or good tidings]
of our Lord Jesus Christ" (II Thess. 1:8). Being disobedient to the
gospel and rejecting the Son of God they are "by nature children of
wrath" (Eph. 2:3). "He that believeth not the Son shall not see life;
but the wrath of God abideth on him" (John 3:36).

	The above is not a very pleasing picture of the unsaved in their
present state, but it is God's own description of their condition and
is therefore true.

	The Final State of Being Lost

	Those who do not heed the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ but reject
salvation "shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the
presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power" (II Thess.
1:9). This is an everlasting condition. In the present life there is
opportunity to become saved and brought back to God, but when the
final separation from Him has taken place there shall be no such

	This separation is not only from the presence of the Lord, it is
also from His power and therefore from all benefits that go out from

	Many think lightly of being separated from God. They have nothing to
do with Him now and do not admit that they are getting anything from
Him. They think that they can do very well without Him. Little do
they realize how much they are depending upon and receiving from Him
every moment of their lives. The air they breathe was made by Him.
The rain that falls and the sun that shines are both sent by Him.
They call this nature, and so it is, but God brought it all into
being and sustains it


all by His power. Apart from God's providence for man, every creature
would die instantly.

	When man becomes separated from the glory of the power of God he
shall not benefit in the slightest from God's providence. The
creature will be completely separated from every phase of His
provision. That state is called "blackness of darkness for ever"
(Jude 13). There shall be no ray of light to pierce the absolute
darkness; no drop of rain to quench an insatiable thirst; no morning
star to point to the break of a new day after that everlasting night.

	Lost man in that state is also described as being cast into the lake
of fire. It is said that all who are "not found written in the book
of life" shall be cast therein (Rev. 20:15). Some say that this is
only figurative. If so, that makes the condition more serious, for
the reality is always more than the figure. It is also spoken of as
"hell fire: where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched"
(Mark 9:47, 48). And still again as "outer darkness: there shall be
weeping and gnashing of teeth" (Matt. 8:12).

	All who are not saved are already under condemnation. "He that
believeth not hath been judged already, because he hath not believed
on the name of the only begotten Son of God" (John 3:18, R.V.). They
are now living under a suspended sentence, but the judgment shall
surely be executed unless they turn to God and in dependence upon Him
receive Jesus Christ as their Saviour.

	The essence of sin was seen to be a desire to be independent of God.
The final state of the lost shall be one in which there can be no
dependence upon Him. Hell, then, is nothing more or less than the
fulfillment of man's desire and the ultimate consequence of his own


                   20 How Shall We Escape if We Neglect?

  IN the foregoing chapters the greatness of salvation has been
pointed out. It culminates in nothing less than an eternity, not only
in the presence of God, but in the very image and likeness of His own
Son and in perfect unity with God the Son and with God the Father. It
has also been shown that this salvation is available to all. It has
been completely accomplished on behalf of man by God through Jesus
Christ. It is offered as a free gift to everyone who will so accept
it. The only condition imposed upon man is to acknowledge his own
individual need thereof and accept it. Finally, the awfulness of the
judgment, even everlasting separation from God and His provision for
man both as Creator and as Saviour, has been described. There is but
one point left to consider. That is the terrible possibility of
completely losing the benefits of salvation and suffering the awful
judgments of God.

	"For if the word spoken by angels was steadfast, and every
transgression and disobedience received a just recompense of reward;
how shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation; which at the
first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by
them that heard him" Heb. 2:2, 3).

	The first thought here is that apart from salvation there is no
escape from the judgments of God. Man must accept God's salvation or
he must face God as his judge. Having neglected that, he shall have
nothing to offer as a valid reason to escape punishment.


	The second thought, already mentioned, is the terrible possibility
of neglecting God's great salvation. The word used in the Bible
passage is "neglect." It is not reject. More people are lost by
neglecting than by rejecting salvation. Probably only relatively few
really face the issue and then willfully reject. Most people

	When Paul stood before Felix and "reasoned of righteousness,
temperance, and judgment to come, Felix trembled, and answered, Go
thy way for this time; when I have a convenient season, I will call
for thee" (Acts 24:25). There is no record of a more convenient
season for Felix.

	One of the great inventors of the past generation is reported to
have said that he would give the last five years of his life to the
study of religion. Without having received notice as to when those
five years would begin, he died and that, as far as is known, without
having given thought to the all-important matter of salvation.

	The world is rushing headlong toward eternity without giving a
thought to Calvary and the Christ who there died that they might
live. They are going to an endless death--a separation of both body
and spirit from God and His love with all its benefits, all because
they neglect to accept His great salvation.

	With such great issues at stake, why do so many men, women and
children neglect to consider and accept God's free salvation? Why do
some even go so far as to reject it willfully?

	It seems safe to say that whatever the individual reason may be, it
comes under one of two groups. The first of these is that men love
darkness (John 3:19). Darkness as God recognizes it, is not confined
to the things that are done by the underworld. Jesus came into the
world to shine as a light in darkness (John 1:5). Apart from Him man
is in darkness. This does not, as has previously been


said, mean intellectual darkness, for there is much intellectual
light in the world. It means spiritual darkness. There are many
things in the way of culture, refinement, adventure, human progress
and accomplishment which according to God's estimate are works of

	These things are not wrong in themselves but men love these things
to the extent that they will not set them aside and consider the one
all important thing, namely, salvation. Men love the pleasures of
this world so that they neglect to consider their eternal welfare.
This world does have pleasures to offer: preferment, honor,
popularity, accomplishment, amusements and sports to mention only a
few. But when this world shall pass away all these pleasures will
have disappeared. They will have passed away even long before that
time for each individual whose days on earth have been numbered.
There is nothing left. And what is worse, God's great salvation has
been neglected until it is too late to accept it.

	The other reason why many neglect God's great salvation is the
belief that man can be saved through his own efforts. Many try to
earn their salvation by their own goodness. They are often willing to
suffer great sacrifices and deny themselves all worldly pleasures to
earn God's favor and His salvation. In this effort on their part,
they neglect God's salvation. As long as man fails to see the utter
uselessness of even the finest human effort as a means to salvation,
so long will he neglect or reject God's salvation.

	As has previously been mentioned, the Pharisees were not saved; they
rejected God's salvation, because they went about trying to establish
their own righteousness. There has probably never been any group of
religious people more zealous for the true God than they, but they
depended upon their own goodness and had no need for a freely given
salvation from God.


	The desire to obtain salvation by one's own meritorious works has
its roots in man's unwillingness to acknowledge his lost and utterly
hopeless state. Man dislikes more than anything else to admit that
because of sin he is undone. He is unwilling to confess, as Paul did,
that in himself "dwelleth no good thing" (Rom. 7:18). Men do not want
to declare a voluntary bankruptcy in the court of the eternal Judge
and list their assets at absolutely nothing and liabilities so great
that they far exceed the possibility of human payment. They are not
willing to write down "no value" against all of their own good works
and accomplishments. They do want to offer God something in the way
of a settlement even if it be but a fraction of one per cent.

	Whatever the cause may be, whether preoccupation because of a love
for the things of this world, or an effort to earn salvation, the
result is the same. Salvation is neglected and God's judgment is
certain to fall.

	That which follows has already been said and emphasized but it is of
such infinite importance that it is fitting to repeat it here in
different words as the closing thought of this book.

	Men are lost because, and only because, they do not accept Jesus
Christ who is the way to God the Father, and apart from whom there
can be no salvation.

	Men are not lost because they are not good enough for heaven. They
are not lost because they belong to Adam's sinful race. They are not
lost because of the sins which they have committed, however heinous
these may be. They are not lost because they are born sinners. The
condemnation that rested upon man because of all of these conditions
was taken away when the Son of God bore that condemnation on the
cross that was raised on Calvary's hill. He there, as the Lamb of
God, took away the sin of the world. In fact He came to earth for
that very purpose. Now,


because sin was judged on the cross, God offers eternal life to
everyone who will receive His Son as the One who met all the demands
of His justice. Those who will not so receive Him shall be judged and
punished with an everlasting separation from the presence of God and
the glory of His power (II Thess. 1:9). "He that believeth not is
condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the
only begotten Son of God" (John 3:18). "He that believeth not the Son
shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him" (John 3:36).
"For there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby
we must be saved" (Acts 4:12).

	One day nearly two thousand years ago Pilate said, "What shall I do
then with Jesus?" That question every man must answer. Man cannot
escape it. He must accept Him, or he will neglect and thereby reject
Him. There is no middle ground.

	Some say, "How can a loving God send men to hell?" The question is,
rather, "How can God, who in love has given His own Son to save men
from hell, do otherwise than cast them therein when they reject His
provision to save them therefrom?"

	How shall you escape if you reject so great salvation?

	To anyone who has not yet accepted Jesus Christ and God's salvation
through Him, there still comes the Bible's last invitation to
mankind. "And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let
him take the water of life freely" (Rev. 22:17).

Return to Top