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Salvation:- 5 ( 1 | 2 | 3|4 )


By Nelson Thomas, Mumbai


      We have seen the natural condition of man that necessitates salvation. By birth he is blind, lost and dead. He needs light and life. He needs to be sought after and brought back to God His creator.

Man made ways

      As man face the consequences of his sin and living in a perilous state, he has sought ways to be saved from this hopeless condition. Each religion is the result of this effort. Even today man do try to escape from the havoc sin has brought about in his life. Notice three main methods.

1. Self- reform.

      As Adam did, trying to cover up his sin. Gensis 3:7. Some try to laugh away his pain, others depend upon tranquilizers. Many think education can save them from sin and misery. But the truth is that education may make man more civilized and advanced in life, but that does not make him happy or clean. On the contrary, educated and technologically advanced men commit evil in a more advanced manner and try his best to cover it up!

      Some others try to feel good about everything. They just think and hope that every thing is right, they are also right. Experts counsel them to believe in themselves and hope the best. Plenty of such self-help books are available today, which guides the readers to attain salvation or peace of mind through their own efforts.

      But all such efforts are vain, because he is only dealing with the fruits of his sin nature. The root remains. Job 9:30, 31. An adjustment can not improve him, nor bring him close to God.

2. Self-righteousness.

      Some consider that they are better than many others around them. May be true, they are decent, good, behaves well with others, above that as much as possible doing charitable services like, helping the poor and needy. So, they think they are God's favoured ones and already qualified to attain salvation.

      These groups of people are sincere no doubt but they are ignorant of the divine standard. They measure them with their own standard. We may be better in the sight of our fellow being, not God, who carefully watches all our motives and thoughts. Whether we commit one sin or hundred sin God looks at each one of us as condemned sinner. In many cases man's effort to present himself as a pure man is because of his fear of society or law.

      Bible says that such good works are just like filthy rags before the eyes of God. Isaiah 64:6. Holy God who knows every secret of man can not be influenced by our good works. As it comes from a dirty heart and hand, He can not even look at it.

3. Religious rituals – offerings. Heb 10:4

      Think of the hardship and the cost man is willing to take in order to fulfill a religious ritual in the hope that such a service will give peace and prosperity to him and his household. Man is willing to do anything, however difficult it may be.

      Look at certain pilgrim centers around the world and the money they collect. Religious centers and spiritual gurus are flourishing. Because man is searching for salvation and he is ready to pay any amount for it.

      But the Bible says that such religious ceremonies also fail to bring true and lasting peace of mind to man. That's why week after week, year after year he takes a pilgrimage, offer sacrifices and follow the various rites of his / her respective religion.

      How sad, man knows how to go to the best hospital for better result, he is also keen to send his children to the best institution for better education, but man is bound to certain rituals and religious services and just hope good may come any time.

External vs Internal

      Notice, detergents may remove the filth of the body, but who can cleanse a guilty conscience? Cosmetics may improve external beauty, but internal beauty and peaceful heart comes from God. External inducement like friendship, entertainment, and sightseeing, traveling, reading and mind stimulating activities may give a feel-good experience, but just for a brief period. Yet with all such external stimuli's, man is not permanently happy and peaceful internally.

      All these man made efforts are proved to be worthless as far salvation is concerned. Those who follow such rituals and practices keep on following them but never save themselves, or others.

      Reports from around the world testify to it. Increased rate of suicide, crime, broken families, drug abuse and other mental and social problems point to one truth that man by all his efforts, expertise and economical & technological advancement, does not progress, but deteriorated.

      Then only answer is that till he comes back to his creator the only one and true God, man can not be delivered from sin and its consequences or enjoy lasting peace.

God's way of salvation

      When man with his entire attempt failed to save himself from the effects of sin, God Himself took the initiative and accomplished the work of salvation. In the Garden of Eden we see it as an illustration. When Adam & Eve failed to cover themselves up, God found a way for them. He covered them with a new dress. Gene 3:8, 21. (Heb 10:4, 11—14, 18; 1:3; 2:14 , 15; 2Cor 5:21 ; 1Jn 3:5; Jn 1:29 ; Isa 53:5.)

      Salvation is always of God. Psalm 3:8. He alone can save us, for there is no one else who needs no salvation or forgiveness. When every individual on earth is equally guilty and needs to be punished, no mortal being can be our Saviour and Lord.

      To be delivered from sin and its consequences one must see himself as God sees him and adopt to the divine principles and ways. That is the message of the New Testament. ‘For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son (Jesus Christ), that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” John 3:16.

      This is the gospel – the good news - of the Bible, God loves sinful, guilty and condemned man to save and transform him. God Himself has done the necessary work for it – judicially and legally. Man needs not do any more work, no offering of money either. Salvation is available freely by the grace of God. Believe and trust the Saviour who died for us and rose again to live for us. 1Corinthaians 15:1—4.





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