GOD'S ORDER IN SALVATION
By Curtis Pugh
By Curtis Pugh
The Bible is clear as to the order in which salvation is provided for the sinner. Jude 1:1 says, “Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, to them that are sanctified by God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ, and called.” After identifying himself to his readers, Jude next addresses those to whom he wrote telling them three things about their salvation. First, they were set apart (“sanctified”) by God the Father. Second, they were kept safe (“preserved”) in Jesus Christ. Third, they were effectively “called.” These three steps may come as a surprise to those who have become accustomed to looking at salvation as something that man does.
From beginning to end, “Salvation is of the LORD,” (Jonah 2:9). Hebrews 10:14 tells us what the Lord Jesus accomplished by His sacrificial death: “For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified.” Think about that! Those sanctified or set apart for the purpose of being conformed to the image of Jesus Christ are complete, lacking nothing in righteousness because of the work of Christ on their behalf. That is the sense of Christ's having “perfected for ever” those chosen by God for salvation. Through God-given faith Christ's perfect righteousness is imputed (assigned) to them: i.e. literally “put down on their account.” Thus the Lord Jesus said, “It is finished” (nothing more to be done) when speaking of His death-work, (John 19:30).
This being “sanctified” or set apart for holy use was accomplished back when God chose those whom He would save. The Bible says God “...hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame...” (Ephesians 1:4). The chosen ones were kept safe by being “chosen in him:” i.e. in Christ. Just as the Lord Jesus could not be killed until God's foreordained time should come so those whom God chose to salvation are kept safe (examples: see John 2:4; 7:30; 8:20). Then in God's appointed time those set apart for salvation (sanctified) are called with such a powerful call that the elect sinner cannot refuse. After all God cannot be successfully resisted by mere humans. As Paul wrote, “For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure, “ (Philippians 2:13).
The Lord Himself said, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, The hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live,” (John 5:25). The question is have you been called with a call from the Son of God? Just as dead Lazarus was called forth from his tomb with a call that brought him to life so those chosen and kept safe are called with a call that brings eternal life to them: a call from the Lord Jesus Christ Himself. Or are you yet in your sins? So it is that God initiates and completes the salvation of His elect.
Grace Bible Baptist Church
26080 Wax Road
Denham Springs, LA 70726